ASU swim and dive falls short against Stanford

The ASU men’s and women’s swim and dive teams battled it out with Stanford Saturday in Palo Alto. The Cardinal came out on top, defeating the Sun Devil men’s team 135-101 and the women’s team 148-68.

Stanford claimed first place in most events, however, ASU senior Tristin Baxter was once again on fire in the distance events. She finished first place in both the 1000 freestyle with a time of 10:03.32 and in the 500 freestyle with a time of 4:51.21.

Baxter believes the team’s strong point for the day was being able to compete against one of the top teams in the nation.

“Everyone stepped up today and fought hard in every race,” Baxter said. “This meet gave us some things to focus on leading up to Pac-12s and NCAAs.”

In addition to Baxter’s personal success, both the men’s and women’s 400-meter freestyle relay teams took first place as well.

The women’s relay team, consisting of junior Juanita Barretto, freshman Kat Simonovic, sophomore Marina Spadoni and Baxter, finished the race in 3:28.17.

The men’s relay team included freshman Barkley Perry, freshman Tadas Duskinas, freshman Richard Bohus and senior Alex Coci. Their time was 3:01.76.

The men’s 200-medley relay and 200 breaststroke also took first place finishes.

Baxter said the team will focus on improving its starts, turns and finishes leading up to the end of the season because they can make a huge difference at the end of the year.

The Cardinal divers were also a challenge for the Sun Devils but ASU had several strong performances Saturday.

Women’s redshirt junior diver Hailey Casper finished second place in both the 1-meter and 3-meter events.

Casper said the goal for today’s meet was consistency.

“It was a great opportunity to hone in on some specific skills that we want to focus on moving into the upcoming championship meets,” Casper said.

She only lost by a few points in the 1-meter event with a score of 303.68. Casper scored 307.95 points in the 3-meter event.

“Today I could have dove with more energy and conviction,” Casper said.

Men’s senior diver Riley McCormick also took second place in both of his events. He scored 363.83 points in the 1-meter event and 404.70 points in the 3-meter event.

McCormick barely lost to Stanford freshman Bradley Christensen in the 3-meter event. Christensen scored 405.38 to take the close first-place finish.

The Sun Devils will face rival Arizona at home on Feb. 8. That meet will be the final meet before the Pac-12 and NCAA championships begin.

Reach the reporter at mkavy@asu.edu or follow her on Twitter @meggiekavy