Cal Men To Kick Off Season Against Cal Poly With King of the Pool

by SwimSwam 13

September 20th, 2023 College, News, Pac-12

Courtesy: Cal Athletics

BERKELEY – Two-time reigning national champions begin the 2023-24 season in San Luis Obispo for the annual King of the Pool duel against host Cal Poly. Friday’s meet is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. PT at the Anderson Aquatics Center.

The unique pentathlon meet will feature each swimmer taking part in five 100-yard races, including butterfly, breaststroke, individual medley, backstroke and freestyle. The swimmer with the best combined time from each school will be crowned King of the Pool.

Cal at Cal Poly | 11 a.m. PT | Anderson Aquatics Center | San Luis Obispo
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Last time out, Cal displayed its depth and talent, as the Golden Bears secured their second consecutive national championship and eighth overall championship. Multiple athletes scored multiple points at the Jean K. Freeman Aquatic Center. With the win, Cal continued its streak of finishing among the top-two teams in the NCAA Championships in each of the past 13 years. The title was the sixth under head coach David Durden. Fifteen athletes earned All-American honors, led by junior Destin Lasco, who earned an individual championship in the 200-yard backstroke.

Eight Bears have been crowned the King of the Pool from 2010-21. Previous winners include three-time winner Marcin Tarczynski (2010-12), Ryan Murphy (2013), Will Hamilton (2014), Matthew Josa (2017), Andrew Seliskar (2018), Zheng Quah (2019), Hugo Gonzalez (2021) and Lasco in 2022. Lasco’s combined time of 4:04.23 was the best of any swimmer over the five events. Robin Hanson finished in second with a combined time of 4:12.34.

Cal returns 11 student-athletes who have earned All-American honors in their careers. The list includes Jack AlexyLiam Bell, Hanson, Matthew JensenGabriel Jett, Lasco, Jason LouserColby MeffordDare Rose, Bjorn Seeliger and Sebastian Somerset.

Durden and his staff continue to reload the talent pipeline. The Bears welcomed eight swimmers for the 2023-24 season, and five of the eight were named top recruits for the 2023 recruiting class by Joining the Bears are Rob Alexy (Mendham, New Jersey), Nikolas Antoniou (Limassol, Cyprus), Andrew Hallett (Walnut Creek), Keaton Jones (Gilbert, Arizona) Roman Jones (Chatham Township, New Jersey), Humberto Najera (Rancho Santa Margarita), Samuel Quarles (Coronado) and Aaron Shackell (Carmel, Indiana)

The Bears have a new look on deck this season with the addition of associate head coach Josh Huger and assistant coaches Kim Williams and Noah Yanchulis. Huger spent the past four seasons at Tennessee, whose women’s program finished in the top 10 nationally every year he was there. Last year, he helped the Vols’ men’s program to a seventh-place finish – its best in seven years. Huger also helped coach Tennessee’s Jordan Crooks, the 2023 SEC Swimmer of the Year, to the 2023 NCAA championship in the 50 free. Williams was a three-time NCAA champion and six-time All-American as a swimmer at Stanford who spent last season as a volunteer assistant coach at Northwestern. Yanchulis spent the past five years on the coaching staff at Division II Oklahoma Christian and was a two-time Big East Most Outstanding Swimmer as a student-athlete at Seton Hall.

Six Cal swimmers earned spots on the 2023-24 United States National Team roster, which was announced by USA Swimming last week. Alums Ryan Murphy and Trenton Julian earned their 12th and fifth career selection, respectively. Current Golden Bears Lasco and Rose earned their third and second career selection, respectively. Alexy and Shackell both earned their first career selection.

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7 months ago

*Shackell was on National Team last year as well ‘22-‘23, 200 fly.

7 months ago

I’d swear the title mentioned another team but after reading the article it sounds like an away intrasquad.

Reply to  SwimPop
7 months ago

It’s a press release from Cal, as denoted at the top. Cal Poly has not sent us a press release about the meet.

Reply to  Braden Keith
7 months ago

new coach (old coach) just started Monday so everyone trying to catch up after several weeks of chaos

7 months ago

the baby bears are slated for a massive collapse this year

Foreign Embassy
Reply to  Andrew
7 months ago

Still reeling from the Shackell and Weinstein commitments I see…

7 months ago

who do we like for king this year?

Reply to  Owlmando
7 months ago

Still Lasco, right?

7 months ago

Any word on if they’re still getting Nans Mazellier? He was their best sprint recruit

Grant Drukker
Reply to  Reid
7 months ago

dang, don’t see him on the roster.

Foreign Embassy
Reply to  Reid
7 months ago

Probably a spring addition…