The first night of individual finals racing at the men’s Pac-12 meet opens up tonight, with three individual events and a relay on tap.
California has a solid contingent of swimmers tonight, with 7 A-finalists and 8 B-finalists. They’ll try to leverage that into a point swing big enough to dent Stanford’s 119-point lead.
Other storylines to watch: USC freshman Reed Malone grabbed the top seed in the 500 free in his first individual Pac-12 Championship swim. Stanford had 5 swimmers make the championship final of the 200 IM and have a shot to get all 5 under 1:45.0 tonight. And Arizona transfer Brad Tandy looks to become the second NCAA sprinter to crack 19 this season as he makes his Arizona debut.
Finals begin at 6 PM Pacific Time, so keep refreshing this page for race-by-race updates from Federal Way.
- Dates: Wednesday, March 5th – Saturday, March 8th; Prelims 11AM/Finals 6PM (Diving February 26th-March 1st with women’s Pac-12s)
- Location: Federal Way, WA (Pacific Time Zone)
- Defending Champion: California (results)
- Live Results: Available
- Championship Central
USC’s Cristian Quintero has done it again. For the second year in a row he came from a low seed to win the 500 free, cutting 6 seconds off his prelims time in the process. Now a junior, Quintero went 4:12.56 to take home the win after putting up just a 4:18.66 this morning. Quintero really had to earn this one, though, as his freshman teammate Reed Malone pushed him for all he was worth.
Quintero went out fast, with Malone, the top seed, holding about a half-second back. But Malone accelerated through the middle of the race to make things dead even at the 300 mark, and continued pushing out to a lead at the 450. But Quintero showed closing speed, coming home in 24.66 to pass up Malone and take the conference title by just a tenth. Malone went 4:12.66 for second place. Both were under the old championships record.
Arizona senior Matt Barber went 4:14.36, a four-second drop of his own that should seal an NCAA invite for him in the event. Cal’s Jeremy Bagshaw went 4:18.02 and Utah sophomore Bence Kiraly joined him under 4:20, the last two in the field to do so.
Cal freshman Long Gutierrez almost got under as well while winning the B heat. He went 4:20.00 to beat USC’s Dimitri Colupaev.
The 200 IM has already been outrageous this season, with three men already going 1:41s in the conference round. Stanford’s Dave Nolan, the defending NCAA champ in the event, became the fourth tonight, powering away with a 1:41.49 win. His splits were great across the board: 22.0 on fly, 25.3 on back, 29.7 on breast and 24.3 on freestyle. He actually went out a half-second faster than he did at NCAAs last season and also came home faster on the free split. The one split that was a bit off was his backstroke, where he went 24.8 last year. That probably bodes well for Nolan, who can likely push that backstroke split – typically his strongest stroke – more when he needs to.
That time also set a new championships record, erasing the mark set by former Stanford star Austin Staab.
Cal swept the two spots after Nolan. Josh Prenot went 1:43.31 and Will Hamilton 1:43.36 following Nolan in from a distance.
Though Stanford stacked up the A final with 5 swimmers, behind Nolan things didn’t go quite as well. Arizona’s Sam Rowan nipped the Cardinal’s Max Williamson 1:44.40 to 1:44.61 for fourth place, and the rest of the Stanford crew fell into the final three spots of the heat. Gray Umbach was 1:45.09, Tom Kremer 1:45.12 and Will Gunderson 1:45.84.
Cal senior Marcin Tarczynski ran away with the B final with the event’s 4th-fastest time. He went 1:43.70 to win by over a second over Arizona’s Michael Meyer.
Junior college transfer Brad Tandy is swimming in his first official NCAA meet, but he’s wasting no time in making his mark for Arizona. The junior went 18.80 to break the championships record, rocket to the top of the national rankings and become just the second man under 19 in the NCAA this season. It’s hardly surprising considering Tandy went 18.97 swimming exhibition earlier this season, but the difference between that swim and this one is still significant in terms of the 50 free.
Cal’s Seth Stubblefield helped himself out with an NCAA invite in a big way, taking second in 19.32. While his prelims time of 19.45 would probably have made the cut, 19.32 should assure him a spot at the big dance.
Utah’s Nick Soedel, who’s had a fantastic junior season, showed off his consistency by going the exact same time a prelims and finals. He put up a 19.36 to just trail Stubblefield for the runner-up spot.
Tony Cox and Tyler Messerschmidt both went 19.4 for Cal. Cox’s 19.40 should move him from a potential NCAA bubble spot to a solid invite, much like Stubblefield’s swim. Messerschmidt dropped one one-hundredth to go 19.48.
USC freshman Dylan Carter put up a 19.51 for sixth, and his teammate Jack Wagner wound up seventh. Santa Barbara junior Wade Allen rounded out the A final.
There was a tie atop the B heat, with Golden Bear teammates Fabio Gimondi and Nick Dillinger each going 19.58.
200 Free Relay
Most of those sprinters were back in action on the 200 free relay, which happened after a short break. Cal rolled to a win, going 1:16.67, which sits fourth in the NCAA. Seth Stubblefield came back with another great swim in a tough double, anchoring in 18.85, the fastest split of the field.
Cal also got nice splits from the other three swimmers. Tyler Messerschmidt went a tick faster than he did in the open event with a 19.42. Freshman Ryan Murphy was 19.3 and Tony Cox put up a 19.0.
USC took second in 1:17.43. Cristian Quintero anchored, splitting 18.89 to keep up with Stubblefield, although Cal’s lead was too big to overcome. Quintero did run down Arizona, though, who led early on Brad Tandy’s 19.12 leadoff.
That split for Quintero shows off some impressive range. The junior was the fastest 500 freestyler in the building, but also put up the second-fastest 50 free split of the field. That’s a multi-purpose freestyler who makes a coach’s relay selections that much easier across every distance.
Zona went 1:17.65 for third. After a bit of a dropoff, Arizona State took fourth with a 1:18.68 before Stanford finished with a 1:18.74. Stanford had Dave Nolan lead off; he went 19.35.
As diving took place along with women’s Pac-12s a week ago, these point totals will look different than the ones on Meet Mobile or live results. We’ve manually added in all the diving events.
Without diving added, Cal leads things by almost thirty after tonight’s racing. But with all three diving events manually added into the scores (the diving happened last week with women’s Pac-12s), Stanford sits atop the standings by 47. There’s no doubt this was a big night for Cal, which got a lot of scoring swims and made up some ground on their Pac-12 rivals. The next two days leave plenty more points up for grabs, though, so the meet is still anybody’s game at this point.
1. Stanford 334
2. Cal 287
3. USC 250
3. Arizona 250
5. ASU 166
6. Utah 150
7. UCSB 100
8. Cal Poly 79