After the West Virginia University’s men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams earned first place at the third annual WVU Invitational, a trio of Mountaineers have earned Big 12 weekly honors, as announced by the league on Wednesday.
Sophomore Miranda Kirtley was named the Women’s Swimmer of the Week, while freshmen Max Nielsen and Mia Cheatwood were named the Men’s and Women’s Newcomers of the Week, respectively. Cheatwood’s honor is her second of the season, while Kirtley and Nielsen garnered the first accolades of their careers.
The Mountaineers were led at the WVU Invite by Cheatwood’s program record in the 100-yard breaststroke. Her time of 1:00.56 topped the previous school record of 1:01.18, set by Morgan Callaway in 2019. In addition to her victory in the 100 breast, the Bowling Green, Ohio, native also tallied an individual win in the 200 breaststroke after touching the wall in 2:12.01, which also was just shy of a program record.
Additionally, Cheatwood also helped the 400 freestyle (49.71 split), 200 freestyle (22.99 split) and 200 medley (28.06 breaststroke split) relay teams tally first-place finishes.
Kirtley earned her recognition after recording a pair of lifetime-best time in the 500 and 1650 freestyle, finishing second in the 1650 (16:36.89) and third in the 500 (4:51.08). She also helped the Mountaineer women tally a first-place finish in the 800 free relay with a 1:51.74 split.
Finally, Nielsen tallied three top-three individual finishes as well as a relay win on his way to earning Men’s Co-Newcomer of the Week. He earned a win in the 500 free with a lifetime-best time of 4:27.99, before swimming another lifetime best in the 100 free to earn third place (44.64). The Phoenix, Arizona, native also placed second in the 200 free (1:38.28), before helping the 400 free relay team tally a win with a 44.20 split.
This marks the second time this season that three different Mountaineers have garnered Big 12 awards in the same week.
WVU returns to action on Nov. 30 – Dec. 3, as it sends 15 Mountaineers to the 2022 Toyota U.S. Open in Greensboro, North Carolina.