Feb. 22, 2013
SAN ANTONIO, Texas - University of Nevada senior Mengjiao Mi simply will not relinquish her hold over the sprint freestyle events at the 2013 Mountain West Championships.
Mi, a native of Beijing, China, won the 200-yard freestyle in record fashion on Friday, touching the wall first with a time of 1:46.36. For the second-consecutive day, her winning time set a Mountain West Championship record. Lorena Diaconescu of UNLV, who finished at 1:46.59 in 2001, held the previous record in the 200-free at the conference event.
Following a few strong individual performances on Friday, Nevada is in fifth place overall with 269 points. With one day remaining, San Diego State continues to lead the 2013 championships. The Aztecs have collected 516.5 points through 14 races.
"The team has created incredible energy on deck and pushed each other along every step of the way," head coach Abby Steketee said. "We're focusing on what we control and going for personal best times/scores.
Known by her teammates and coaches as Jojo, Mi missed the all-time Mountain West record (1:46.28 - Dec. 6, 2008 - Whitney Lopus, Utah) by less one tenth of a second. Her time was under the NCAA B cutoff.
Freshman Yawen Li continued a strong week with a second-place finish in the 400 IM, earning 17 points for the Wolf Pack with a time of 4:12.74. Li earned 12 points for Nevada by finishing seventh in the 200 IM on Thursday evening. Chavisa Thaveesupsoonthorn finished 10th in the 400, earning Nevada seven points with a time of 4:20.25.
A 13th-place finish in the 100-yard backstroke from sophomore Luiza Vieira earned the Pack another four points. She finished with a time of 55.36.
In the race for three points in the Governor's Series presented by NV Energy, the Pack trails rival UNLV. The Rebels are in fourth place at the championships with 313 total points.