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ASU Swimming: Both teams jump up in rankings as they prepare for difficult Pac-12 opponents

(Photo: Scotty Bara/WCSN)

The Arizona State Swimming team is undefeated and moved up in the rankings after defeating Denver University last weekend in their homer opener.

The men’s side has moved to No. 10 while the women’s side has jumped to No. 19 in CollegeSwimming.com’s NCAA D1 national rankings.

Not only is the program moving up in rankings but also senior Alysha Bush and freshman Cameron Craig were honored for CollegeSwimming’s Pac-12 Swimmers of the week.

Bush had a great performance last weekend, brining home the victory in the women’s 200-yard freestyle relay. Bush touched the wall first in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 22.77 and finished first in the 100-yard freestyle, touching the wall at 49.97.

“I just want to work on the details because that’s what has helped me improve this season,” Bush said. “It’s definitely a honor to get Pac-12 swimmer of the week, but I’m staying focused and continually working on the details. That’s what has gotten me to this point.”

Craig, the freshman swimmer, also swam at a high level for the Sun Devils. His first victory last weekend came in the 200-yard freestyle with a time of 1:38.61. That race was most impressive, because Craig’s last 50-yard split was the fastest leg of his race, which is not normal for this event.  Craig’s later victory was in the 100-yard freestyle as he touched the wall at 43.93. The freshman’s most notable contribution came in the 200-yard freestyle relay, were he anchored his team to victory with a 50-yard split freestyle time of 20:14, and out-touched the Denver anchor.

Although the program is operating on a high level, they will go up against a tough USC and UCLA team this weekend.  Men’s team captain Christian Lorenz mentioned what the team learned from past meets.

“Denver was our first home meet and first real representation on how the season was going to go,” Lorenz said. “So it’s awesome starting off 3-0. As we move into our higher Pac-12 rivals USC and UCLA. We are thinking how can we compete with them, how can we get to their level, so that we make an impact now and then make an impact in March when its on a national stage.”

Lorenz had a strong performance this past week in the 200- yard breastroke as he won the event with a 2:00.75 despite having a banged up shoulder.

“After a meet I kind of pay for it,” Lorenz said. “It’s defiantly getting better, swimming felt a lot better than Utah and BYU. So I’m trying to get there.”

Lorenz and the rest of his team are more than ready to face USC this weekend. However, The Trojan men’s team is also undefeated and 3-0, with dual victories over Cal Poly, Santa Barbra and CSU Bakersfield. The women’s side is 2-0, with a conference win against Washington Sate and a victory over Florida Gulf Coast. In addition, the women finished third in the six-team SMU Classic.

The Bruins are also ranked in this week’s CollegeSwimming.com National rankings, at No. 26. Last time out, The Bruins were defeated 143-119 to Washington Sate.

“We are preparing to swim our hardest against UCLA,” Bush said. “I think the women’s team defiantly has an edge because the men aren’t swimming and they are traveling with us. We are going to have an edge with our cheering squad. We really have a good chance against UCLA, considering our past performances and what they did recently against Washington State. “

The Sun Devils seem confident but not satisfied with their recent success. The attitude around the deck in Tempe is consistency.

“The game plan I would say is to keep the ball rolling,” Lorenz said. “The expectation is to go in and show them who we are and show them what ASU swimming is turning into.”

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