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Pepperdine Hosts Malibu Invitational on Saturday to Open 2006-07 Season

Oct. 27, 2006

Malibu, Calif. - The Pepperdine women's swimming and diving team kicks off the 2006-07 season when it hosts the Malibu Invitational on Saturday held at Raleigh Runnels Memorial Pool. Cal Lutheran (men and women), Loyola Marymount, LaVerne (men and women) and Cal Poly (men and women) along with the host Pepperdine will participate in the meet.

The meet will open at 10 a.m. with sprints, while distance events are slated for 2 p.m. The invite will be scored as an individual high point, instead of the customary team competition, with the top eight places scoring.

After concluding last season with a third-place finish at the Pacific Coast Swimming Conference Championships, head coach Nick Rodionoff, who begins his seventh season with the Waves, says he is looking for his team to have the best season ever. "If our freshmen develop as I expect them to do, it could be a team with much strength and very few weaknesses," Rodionoff says.

One of Pepperdine's top returners is senior Alison McLeod, who broke two school records during the conference championships. Other returning conference point scorers include seniors Jillian Kissee and Emily Sharp, juniors Jaime Lyon, Loriann Mark, and Kady Skora and sophomores Jessica Brakulis, Katie Hakim, Lauren Meagher and Haley Wilson.

Rodionoff welcomes nine newcomers to the swimming squad including Brianna Blanchard, Danielle Kimmel, Marissa McDaniel, Jillian McGrath, Amy Nightingale, Jessica Pate, Melissa Schmidt, Marissa Smith and Meagan Tolan.

As the highest scoring team in the conference, diving is always one of the Waves' strengths and this year won't be any different with senior and two-time NCAA qualifier Lindsay Adarme leading the squad. Senior teammate Devyn Schumacher, junior Elizabeth Kress and sophomores Amanda Pond and Michelle Wargo are all significant contributors to the squad. Also joining the team are transfers Sarah Towers and Chelsea Yarnell, who should make an immediate impact.