2020 Men’s Pac-12 Championships: Day 2 Prelims Live Recap

2020 MEN’S PAC-12 CHAMPIONSHIPS

The first individual races of the 2020 men’s Pac-12 Championships take place this morning, as swimmers gear up for prelims of the 500 free, 200 IM, and 50 free. Reigning champion Victor Johansson returns after winning the 500 free as a freshman for USC, but 2-time Pac-12 champion Grant Shoults of Stanford is back after taking a redshirt last season.

The 50 free will feature reigning NCAA Champion Ryan Hoffer (Cal) and teammate Pawel Sendyk, the reigning Pac-12 champion. Cal’s Reece Whitley and USC’s Alexei Sancov are the only Pac-12 men to have broken 1:44 in the 200 IM this season and lead the way into the heats.

While the women’s meet held prelims at 10:30 a.m., the men’s meet this week will start the heats at 11 a.m. each morning.

MEN’S 500 FREE

  • Pac-12 Record: Jean Basson (Arizona), 2009, 4:08.92
  • Meet Record: Grant Shoults (Stanford), 2017, 4:10.67
  • NCAA Record: Kieran Smith (Florida), 2020, 4:06.32
  • 2019 NCAA Invited: 4:16.04
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 4:11.82
  • 2019 Champion: Victor Johansson, USC, 4:13.30

TOP 8 QUALIFIERS

  1. Grant Shoults, Stanford, 4:15.32
  2. Julian Hill, ASU, 4:15.62
  3. Brooks Fail, Arizona, 4:15.80
  4. Trenton Julian, Cal, 4:16.44
  5. Ben Olszewski, ASU, 4:17.30
  6. Calvin David, Cal, 4:17.98
  7. Sean Grieshop, Cal, 4:17.99
  8. Liam Bresette, ASU, 4:18.04

Stanford’s Grant Shoults, a 2-time champion in this event, led the heats in 4:15.32. Though he’s their only finalist, the Cardinal will get plenty of points with 5 in the B final. Jack LeVant was just a couple of tenths shy of making the top 8 in 4:18.29. Arizona’s Brooks Fail, the fastest man in the Pac-12 this season, will challenge tonight after putting up a 4:15.80. Teammate Daniel Namir (4:19.89) broke 4:20 for the first time to qualify for the B final.

ASU freshman Julian Hill had a breakthrough swim with his first best time since 2018. Hill dropped 3 seconds for a 4:15.62 behind Shoults. Teammate Ben Olszewski swam a lifetime best 4:17.30 for 4th. They’ll have 3 in the final with Liam Bresette dropping 2 seconds to take 8th in 4:18.04. Freshman Andrew Gray also made a huge drop, breaking 4:20 for the first time in 4:18.75 to qualify 13th.

Cal also got 3 in, led by Trenton Julian (4:16.44) in 4th. Freshman Calvin David dropped over a second to take 6th in 4:17.98, just a hundredth ahead of teammate Sean Grieshop.

Utah’s Rahiti De Vos (4:18.11) was hundredths shy of the top 8. USC’s Victor Johansson, the 2019 champion, won’t swim tonight as he swam a 4:31.39 to place 34th in the heats.

MEN’S 200 IM

  • Pac-12 Record: Andrew Seliskar (Cal), 2019, 1:38.14
  • Meet Record: David Nolan (Stanford), 2015, 1:40.07
  • NCAA Record: Caeleb Dressel (Florida), 2018, 1:38.13
  • 2019 NCAA Invited: 1:43.82
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 1:41.34
  • 2019 Champion: Andrew Seliskar, Cal, 1:40.53

TOP 8 QUALIFIERS

  1. Daniel Carr, Cal, 1:42.15
  2. Zheng Quah, Cal, 1:43.78
  3. Brennan Pastorek, Stanford, 1:44.41
  4. Bryce Mefford, Cal, 1:44.47
  5. Alex Liang, Stanford, 1:44.49
  6. Reece Whitley, Cal, 1:44.53
  7. Etay Gurevich, Arizona, 1:44.57
  8. Sam Iida, Arizona, 1:44.68

Cal’s Hugo Gonzalez, one of the favorites for the title, was disqualified for a false start after touching in 1:43.03. Gonzalez was the 7th seed coming in. Despite the DQ, Cal will still have 4 men in the A final. Daniel Carr led the way with a lifetime best 1:42.15. Teammate Zheng Quah was the only other swimmer under 1:44. Bryce Mefford (1:44.47) was 4th and Reece Whitley (1:44.53), the top seed coming in, was 6th. Freshman Jason Louser was 11th, breaking 1:46 for the first time in 1:45.47.

Arizona’s Thomas Anderson, the 3rd seed, was disqualified for over-rotating on his back-to-breast turn. He had touched in 1:43.94. The Wildcats still have multiple finalists. Etay Gurevich landed 7th in 1:44.57. Teammate Sam Iida was 8th in 1:44.68.

Stanford also got 2 in. Brennan Pastorek was their fastest of the morning with a 1:44.41 for 3rd. Alex Liang was just a few tenths shy of his best in 1:44.49 for 6th. The Cardinal will have 3 in the B final. Freshman teammate Shane Blinkman narrowly missed the top 8 with a lifetime best 1:45.02.

USC’s Alexei Sancov, the 2nd seed, will swim in the B final after qualifying 14th in 1:46.54.

MEN’S 50 FREE

  • Pac-12 Record: Ryan Hoffer (Cal), 2019, 18.58
  • Meet Record: Brad Tandy (Arizona), 2014, 18.80
  • NCAA Record: Caeleb Dressel (Florida), 2018, 17.63
  • 2019 NCAA Invited: 19.35
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 18.96
  • 2019 Champion: Pawel Sendyk, Cal, 18.83

TOP 8 QUALIFIERS

  1. Ryan Hoffer, Cal, 19.10
  2. Pawel Sendyk, Cal, 19.15
  3. Jack Dolan, ASU, 19.40
  4. Michael Jensen, Cal, 19.41
  5. Evan Carlson, ASU, 19.48
  6. Nikola Miljenic, USC, 19.53
  7. Marin Ercegovic, Arizona, 19.56
  8. Cody Bybee, ASU, 19.64

Cal’s reigning NCAA Champion Ryan Hoffer (19.10) and reigning Pac-12 Champion Pawel Sendyk (19.15) led the heats. Teammate Michael Jensen (19.41) was 4th. Teammate Nate Biondi, a 2019 finalist, was 17th in 19.97. Biondi put up a 19.70 in a time trial last night.

ASU freshman Jack Dolan knocked a couple of tenths off his best to take 3rd in 19.40. Teammates Evan Carlson (19.48) and Cody Bybee (19.64) will join him in the final. All 3 of those men swam lifetime bests. Teammate Carter Swift also lowered his best time, narrowly missing the final with a 19.69 for 9th. Zach Poti will join him in the B heat as he qualified 11th in a lifetime best 19.75.

USC got their first finalist as Nikola Miljenic (19.53) was 6th. Arizona’s Marin Ercegovic matched his best to take 7th in 19.56. Teammate Jorge Iga (19.77) will swim in the B final after touching 12th.

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calswimfan
1 year ago

I forget every year. Prelims arent being televised, is it?

CALSTUDENT
Reply to  calswimfan
1 year ago

Unless, I’m missing something, it doesn’t look like it. I can’t seem to find in on the Pac-12 Network or the app.

Curious
Reply to  CALSTUDENT
1 year ago

Can’t find it either

Back2Back
1 year ago

Back to an earlier chuckle I had with a former teammate last night how the SwimSwamDiveDove article earlier this week cited a poll where 7% of respondents chose Standford to win PAC12’s this year. We were considering CAL exhibitioning all key swimmers, scoring only diving, meet officials doing an ‘IOWA caucus’ miscount, etc. Then CAL DQ’s on 400MR!!! GAME ON!!! GO CARDINAL!!!

JCO
Reply to  Back2Back
1 year ago

This meet is still Cal’s to lose despite the relay

DLSwim
Reply to  Back2Back
1 year ago

And then Hugo DQs the 2 IM…

Curious reader
1 year ago

A little unrelated. But will there be a PAC12 scoring breakdown for the women’s 2020 PAC12 meet?

Curious
1 year ago

Not showing on pac 12 network for anyone?

Dan
1 year ago

Anyone knows if USC’s Victor Johansson is sick or training for Swedish Olympic Trials, wondering why he went 4.31

CALSTUDENT
1 year ago

Seems like Hugo Gonzalez got DQ’d in the 200 IM

Hint of Lime
Reply to  CALSTUDENT
1 year ago

Would’ve put 5 for Cal in the A-final tonight. Better a DQ here than at NCAAs, but let’s hope Cal is learning from the relay DQ yesterday and this today!

CALSTUDENT
Reply to  Hint of Lime
1 year ago

I’m just really nervous about Hugo. Something about how he did at NCAAs a few years ago just haunts me.

dbswims
Reply to  CALSTUDENT
1 year ago

Judging by that 200 breast time trial, I wouldn’t be too worried.

mclovin
Reply to  CALSTUDENT
1 year ago

What exactly do you mean?
He had been performing very well before SECs, I remember you that he already was the junior world champ. He peaked too early and then underperformed at NCAAs, so, what haunts you?

CALSTUDENT
Reply to  mclovin
1 year ago

Maybe I haven’t been paying close enough attention to his swims, but he hasn’t really done anything particularly inspiring since SECs. Admittedly, he hasn’t done anything particularly concerning either. Just feel like getting excited from a good time trial and a not terrible 200 IM time if it weren’t DQ’d is potentially an overreaction.

Bearly Breathing
Reply to  CALSTUDENT
1 year ago

I think this kind of existential worry about a Cal athlete or team snatching defeat from the jaws of victory is very common among Cal sports fans. At least it is among the Cal sports fans I know…

Bears
Reply to  CALSTUDENT
1 year ago

Easy rebuttal: Dave Durden

gator
Reply to  Hint of Lime
1 year ago

He doesn’t have the cut to qualify so will need to time trial? Or swim in a slow heat with a B cut?

joe
Reply to  gator
1 year ago

From his seed time it looks like he has a B cut. I don’t think they’ll care about being in a fast heat or not at NCAAs…but it would also be cool to see what he could do this week.

Joel Lin
Reply to  Lauren Neidigh
1 year ago

He could time trial it tonite with open water on both sides and break 1:40 is my guess.

Will he give it a shot tonite or just focus on the relay? I think he should give it a go & put up a time.

PK Doesn't Like His Long Name
Reply to  Joel Lin
1 year ago

Focus on the relay? I doubt he’s going to be on any of the Cal relays, given that he wasn’t on either of the ones where he should theoretically have his best chance to be on.

Jimbo
Reply to  PK Doesn't Like His Long Name
1 year ago

Can we have an 8 IM relay k thanks. Just toss the cal guys on there and bam.

James
1 year ago

Would it really be so hard to conferences to just live-stream an event for free? Especially a sport like swimming, which can use all the views it can get out there. Instead of making you go through a something like the Pac-12 network (premium subscription) that still doesn’t even seem to be showing it

joe
Reply to  James
1 year ago

Yeah, I feel like this conference season all the major conference meets have been only available on conference networks, which sucks for folks like us in the comment section who are fans of one sport but not necessarily of one conference. It wasn’t this way last year, and I wish things would change back, but I don’t think they will.

Sakibomb25
Reply to  James
1 year ago

To play decil’s advocate… who would be paying to stream the event? Do you know what the expenses are associated with that?

Managing Speed
Reply to  Sakibomb25
1 year ago

Thousand percent agree – everyone expects all these swim meets to be streamed for free, that costs dollars and manpower to make happen, who’s footing that bill? If we’re all such avid fans, we shouldn’t be opposed to paying a couple dollars to make the streaming happen!

jj graham
Reply to  Managing Speed
1 year ago

So how come I was able to get live PAC 12 baseball for free, but not swimming? Who is paying to stream baseball (yuck). And who’s watching it!?!?!

Bearly Breathing
Reply to  James
1 year ago

My guess is schools/sports are expressly prohibited (or at least discouraged) from providing live streams of their sporting events for free. I believe the conference wants to create “demand” for the Pac-12 Network, even though we all know that demand hasn’t been there and probably won’t be until the heat death of the universe.

Ole 99
Reply to  Bearly Breathing
1 year ago

I see public high schools stream swimming online via YouTube. Can’t imagine it costs more than the equipment, which I would expect any Power 5 Conference to have sitting around somewhere. Give a kid an internship and the labor is free.

WHKIRCH
1 year ago

Wow USC has been absolutely terrible. Whoever becomes the new coach there has a serious rebuild ahead.

Bearly Breathing
Reply to  WHKIRCH
1 year ago

I suspect something like a team-wide virus. Source: completely pulling this out of my rear.

Ghost
Reply to  WHKIRCH
1 year ago

If you looked at their last few dual meets, it isn’t a surprise. I think they were 0-6 in the conference this year and the meets weren’t close

Samuel Huntington
Reply to  WHKIRCH
1 year ago

It’s weird because the women looked strong last week.

Austinpoolboy
Reply to  WHKIRCH
1 year ago

Yes it seems so. On the other hand is it just me but is ASU performing above expectations?

Tea rex
Reply to  WHKIRCH
1 year ago

Their pipeline is mostly foreign swimmers, who are focusing on Olympics this year. I wouldn’t be surprised if they get a few blue chips coming in next year

About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona (2013-2015) and the University of Florida (2011-2013). While her college swimming career left a bit to be desired, her Snapchat chin selfies and hot takes on Twitter do not disappoint. She's also a high school graduate of The …

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