Note: There was an error in the official scoring on night 1 of the meet; Cal’s diver was listed as a member of USC, so official results showed USC with 12 too many points and Cal with 12 too few. The scores at the bottom of this post are official after the conference made the correction.
Former USC Trojan Amanda Smith is covering the Pac-12 Women’s meet this weekend.
The Trojan women knew they would had a 30 point deficit going into the second day of individual events, and they sure came out swinging. They placed 4 girls in the top 8 with Meghan Hawthorne (3rd, 4:08.51), Stina Gardell (4th, 4:09.78), Haley Anderson (5th, 4:11.01) & Jessie Schmitt (8th, 4:12.53).
Maya Dirado from Stanford is our top seed for tonight, 4:06.40, and the defending PAC-12 champion Caitlin Leverenz is a close second at 4:06.51. Those two should be among the top few in a loaded field at NCAA’s, so expect their times to get way down in finals.
Another Cal Bear, Lauren Driscoll, finished 6th, 4:11.27. UCLA senior Andrea Reigel in 7th, 4:12.13.
The Stanford women are hot, so it should be a great race tonight between Dirado and Leverenz, but the Women of Troy could surprise the field.
Spliting a 22-high on the butterfly leg of the 200 medley was quite impressive, and Kendyl Stewart will have a chance at her first PAC-12 title tonight in the 100 butterfly. She clocked in first, the only swimmer under 52, at 51.92.
Cal punched in the 2-3 spots for tonight, with Cindy Tran at 52.09 and Rachel Bootsma at 52.17. Stanford was able to get one girl in the top eight with a 7th place finish by Felicia Lee in 52.47. She seems to be getting back to full speed after surgery very well.
UCLA’s Ting Quah had a great lead off night 1 in the 800 free relay, and finished in the 4th spot. Arizona has two girls in the A final with Megan Lafferty 6th and Lauren Smart in 8th.
USC’s Jasmine Tosky has rebounded very well from her mis-step in the 500 yesterday, finding her stride in the 100 butterfly very well. She will join Stewart in the final, finishing 5th this morning, 52.40.
Cal may be hurting in the freestyle sprints, but their middle distance seemed to flourish this morning. They have four in the top eight tonight, all which are underclassmen. Freshman Rachael Acker, 2nd 1:44.82, sophomores Caroline Piehl, 3rd 1:45.36, Catherine Breed, 7th 1:46.69 & Camille Cheng, 8th 1:46.80.
Andi Murez continues to have a great senior season, and she is our top seed for tonight, 1:44.42. Her teammate freshman Julia Anderson is 4th, 1:45.93.
Four Cal Bears, two Stanford Cardinal, and the final two spots of the final tonight are by two senior Arizona State Sundevils. Cassie Morrice is 5th, 1:46.32, dropping a second from her seedtime, and Shannon Landgrebe is 6th.
Cal’s Liz Pelton, who scratched the 100 back, sits 11th in the 200 free with a 1:47.29 – as compared to a 1:43.1 anchor on the 800 free relay on Wednesday. Her teammate Kaylin Bing is 12th in 1:47.53
Swimming healthy can make a big difference, and we see that in USC’s Kasey Carlson. She dipped under 59-seconds from the first time this season and is our top seed for tonight at 58.92. She was the only swimmer under 59. USC also got final spots by Princeton transfer Andrea Kropp, 3rd, and Jessie Scmitt, 5th.
Sarah Haase, a freshman from Stanford, was the only other swimmer to get under the 1:00 barrier, and is second at 59.39. The Cardinal will get another finals swim from Katie Olsen, 7th.
Arizona has emerged with a lot of strength in this event, having three A finalist of their own. Ellyn Baumgarder was the top seed coming into prelims and was a bit off her time, but will have a lane for tonight, finishing 4th 1:00.59. Teammates senior Chelsey Sallli and freshman Emma Schoettmer are 6th and 8th respectfully.
Three teams, USC, Arizona, Stanford, control the A final for tonight, and really any one swimmer from those teams could come away with the title.
Outside the top eight notably, Utah’s Nicole Ligeza had nearly a 2.5 second drop to finish 12th, 1:01.97.
Cindy Tran is only a junior, but she is also a two time defending NCAA champion and PAC-12 champion. Her underwaters are some of the best in the nation, but this may be the year we see Tran topped in her own even, and by even one of her own teammates. Rachel Bootsma sits first after this morning at 51.10 and Tran in second at 51.43-the only two swimming’s under 52-seconds.
Cal also has finals spots from Melanie Klaren in 4th and Hoi Shun Au in 5th.
Felicia Lee had been setting pool records duel after duel meet coming into the championship season. She is third at 52.42.
Annemarie Thayer also from the Cardinal finished in a tie for 6th with Lauren Smart, who is the only non-Bear or Cardinal in the heat tonight. Sprinting super star from Stanford, Maddy Schaefer, got into the top eight also by finishing 8th in 53.27.
A few of these girls will be attempting the 100 butterfly, 100 backstroke combo-Tran, Bootsma, Lee, Smart, and Kendyl Stewart (11th). Also a good preparation from the double in a few weeks at NCAAs.
With 1m diving taking place this afternoon, the huge numbers Stanford and USC both brought up to Federal Way will once again play in huge favor in the team battle.
We will also have the 400 Medley Relay tonight. A lot of girls will be swimming their 100’s of strokes individually, and have to turn around and perform big on their relays.
It seems to me that Stanford and USC will run away in the team standings tonight (though the scoring correction will help Cal’s cause), but who will be first is a good question. There’s still a lot of swimmers who haven’t started individual events yet, so things could still shift dramatically.
1. Stanford University 491.5
2. University of Southern Califor 442.5
3. University of Arizona 407.5
4. University of CA – Berkeley 396.5
5. University of CA – Los Angeles 313
6. Arizona State University 308
7. Oregon State 158
8. The University of Utah 117
9. Washington State University 54