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Jena Kistler of Spokane, Washington, has announced her verbal commitment to Washington State University. Kistler is wrapping up her junior year, and is set to arrive in Pullman for the 2024-2025 season.
Kistler’s older brother, Drew Kistler, also swims at the collegiate level. He competes for the University of Minnesota, where he recently finished his freshman season.
She shared her commitment on Instagram:
Kistler trains year-round with the Spokane Waves Aquatic Team. She specializes in breaststroke and IM events, and owns a Winter Junior Nationals qualifying time in the 100m breast (1:13.79). At Winter Juniors, Kistler earned her highest finish at 62nd in the 100 breast in a best time of 1:03.98.
She knocked a few more tenths off her 100 breast time at Speedo Sectionals in Federal Way, where she swam a 1:03.61 to finish 17th overall. She went two-for-two on breaststroke best times, as she dropped just under a second in the 200 to take 19th overall (2:19.13).
Kistler’s 400 IM is another event that has seen tremendous improvement this season. At Sectionals she notched her first best time in the event since 2020, going a 4:27.50. She swam it again a few weeks later at the Western Zone Senior Championships, where she won in a final time of 4:25.15.
Top SCY Times:
- 50 breast – 29.80
- 100 breast – 1:03.61
- 200 breast – 2:19.13
- 200 IM – 2:06.15
- 400 IM – 4:25.15
The Cougars finished 8th out of 8 teams at the 2023 Pac-12 Championships in February. Their highest individual finisher was freshman Emily Lundgren, who finished 3rd in the 200 breaststroke. Lundgren and fellow freshman Dori Hathazi went on to compete at the NCAA Division I Championships, where Hathazi finished as high as 31st in the 200 fly (1:56.29).
Kistler is a few seconds outside of scoring range in the both breaststroke events and the 400 IM, where it took a 4:22.36 to advance to the C-final. Senior Jewel Springer and sophomore Sophie Macy were Washington State’s finalists in the 400 IM, with Springer taking 16th (4:20.15) and Macy finishing 24th (4:23.36). Macy will overlap with Kistler for a year, helping WSU maintain depth in the event.
Joining Kistler in Washington State’s class of 2028 is California native Ashlyn Hernandez. Hernandez is also a breaststroker, owning personal best times of 1:03.00 and 2:14.42 in the 100 and 200 breast.
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