2015 A3 Performance Invitational
The first night of finals at the A3 Performance Invitational in Monterey Park, California came to a close tonight. Unlike some of the other invitationals around the NCAA, this meet is being swum short course yards for both prelims and finals.
200 Free Relay
The 200 free relays kicked things off in the first finals session of the meet. On the women’s side, UCLA claimed the win in 1:30.87, just out-touching USC who finished 2nd in 1:31.20. Interestingly enough, both the USC men and women are entered here in relays, but in no individual events. UCLA had a blistering second leg from Linnea Mack (22.04) that brought them into the lead after falling behind early. Anchor Caroline McTaggart overcame a 0.44 deficit heading into the final leg to claim the win splitting a solid 22.58. Notable splits from USC were lead-off Anika Apostolan (22.68) and third swimmer Chelsea Chenault (22.49). UC Santa Barbara was third (1:32.51), and University of Hawaii was 4th (1:33.59). Other notable splits include Lauren Vosseler of UCSB (22.52), Franziska Weidner of Hawaii (22.48), and Kirsten Vose from USC’s “B” squad (22.54).
On the men’s side, the Stanford men claimed the first relay event of the meet winning in a swift 1:19.90. They had solid performances all around from lead-off Sam Perry (19.95), Connor Black (19.89), Spencer DeShon (19.95), and Cole Cogswell (20.11). USC was 2nd (1:21.22), Santa Barbara 3rd (1:21.78), and San Diego 4th (1:21.79). Some notable sub-20 second splits came from Mason Tittle of UCSB (19.76), and Sean Duggan (19.94) and Jeff Garnier (19.69) from Stanford’s “B” squad.
Top seed Riley Spitser of San Jose State blew away the field in the women’s 500 free, posting a very fast time of 4:46.64. She led from start to finish, beating 2nd place finisher Bonnie Diamond of California Polytechnic State University (4:52.97) by over 6 seconds. Kira Webster of Hawaii was 3rd (4:53.16), and Sandro Soe of UCLA was 4th (4:53.61).
Liam Egan of Stanford defended his top seed in the men’s 500, posting a fast time of 4:19.22, defeating teammate Danny Thompson who was the runner-up in 4:21.40. Egan negative split the race, flipping at 2:09.9 at the 250. He had a particularly strong final 100, coming in at 50.60. Nolan Newland of POLY was 3rd in 4:22.29, improving his preliminary time by 1.43 seconds, and Stanford’s Jimmy Yoder was 4th in 4:24.81.
Coming into the final as the 4th seed after a morning swim of 2:03.53, Emma Schanz (UCLA) pulled off the win tonight in 1:59.69 over Franziska Weidner (HI) who was 2nd in 1:59.72. It was a 4-women race at the 100 yard mark, as Schanz, Weidner, Whitney Jorgensen (PAC) and Esme Gullick (FRES) all turned together in 56 low. After Schanz dropped the top backstroke (29.45) and breaststroke (34.21) splits, Weidner came home strong in 28.09, just missing out on beating Schanz to the wall. Jorgensen ended up 3rd in 2:00.87.
In an incredibly close race dominated by Stanford, senior Gray Umbach claimed the men’s title in 1:45.80, just out-touching teammate Abrahm Devine who was 2nd in 1:45.81. We saw Umbach take the first 100 out much slower than he did in the prelims, turning 2 seconds slower than he did this morning. Devine led through the 100 in 48.79, with Umbach close behind. Teammates Curtis Ogren and Max Williamson closed on them in the breaststroke, making it a 4-man race coming down the final 50. Umbach was able to close in a blazing 24.92, taking the win. Williamson was 3rd (1:46.26) and Ogren was 4th (1:47.10). Micah Ornelas of Hawaii was 5th in 1:48.78.
After a blazing relay leg of 22.04 at the beginning of the session, Linnea Mack of UCLA won the 50 free in a fast time of 22.52. She was followed closely by teammate Caroline McTaggart who was 2nd in 22.80. Lauren Vosseler (UCSB) was 3rd in 23.27, and Colleen Daley (UCSD) was 4th in 23.28. Leah Hatayama had a blazing swim out of the B-final, posting a 22.98 after going 23.76 this morning.
Sam Perry of Stanford clipped teammate Connor Black at the wall, 20.00 to 20.07, for the 50 free win. Their teammate Spencer DeShon was 3rd (20.29), and Arthur Heale (UCSD) was 4th in 20.47. Also swimming in the final was Stanford’s Jeff Garnier (20.66) in 5th, Sean Duggan (20.72) in 6th, and Cole Cogswell (20.81) in 8th.
400 Medley Relay
The UCLA women made it 2 for 2 in relay wins on the first night of finals, winning the 400 medley relay in a time of 3:35.32. They out-touched USC for the second straight relay, who finished just behind in 3:35.36. The win by UCLA is even more impressive considering the USC women didn’t have any individual events. UCLA was led by individual event winners Linnea Mack and Emma Schanz, who swam backstroke and breaststroke respectively. Mack gave them the lead with a split of 52.40, and Schanz was a solid 1:01.06 on the breast. However, Riley Scott of USC overtook Schanz with the top split of 1:00.21. UCLA’s Katie Grover regained the lead with the top fly split of 52.99, and 50 free runner-up Caroline McTaggart (48.87) was able to hold off USC’s Anika Apostolan (48.50) for the win. San Jose State was 3rd (3:42.94), Hawaii 4th (3:44.24), and Pacific 5th in 3:44.90.
Like the UCLA women, the Stanford men won their second relay of the night in the 400 medley relay, going 3:11.13 over USC’s 3:13.72. Freshman Ryan Dudzinski led off for Stanford in a very fast time of 46.57, giving them an early lead. USC’s Morten Klarksov posted a 53.40 breaststroke split, however, giving USC the lead heading into the butterfly. Coming off his 200 IM victory Gray Umbach threw down the fastest fly split of the night in 46.50, regaining Stanford’s lead before he handed off to Sam Perry who finished the job splitting 42.50 on freestyle. USC’s Reed Malone anchored in 44.53. Santa Barbara was 3rd, Hawaii 4th and Cal Poly 5th. Stanford’s “B” and “C” relays also posted some fast times, with the “C” team just ahead of the “B” team in 3:15.45 to 3:15.46. Notable was Connor Black splitting 46.91 on fly for the “C” team.
The meet continues tomorrow with the prelims session slated for 9 AM Pacific time. Tomorrow’s events include the 400 IM, 100 fly, 200 free, 100 breast, and 100 back.