Pool Record and 95-point Victory For Cal Men Against Rival Stanford

by Carly Geehr 19

February 22nd, 2014 College, News, Pac-12

The Cal men left no question in anyone’s mind about their readiness to race, as they swept the top 2 spots in the first relay of the meet and roared immediately to a commanding lead over the Cardinal. On a gorgeous morning in Palo Alto, the hoards of Missy Franklin fans who showed up in full force for the women’s meet last week were noticeably absent, but the Cal men put on a show for their fans who made it across the bay to watch.

200 Medley Relay
Before this race was the only time Stanford was within striking distance of Cal. Freshman Ryan Murphy led off with a sizzling 21.86 for Cal’s A squad, but it was junior transfer Chuck Katis‘ 24.40 breaststroke split that launched Cal to a big lead over the rest of the field. At this point, it looked like Stanford’s A team was in good position for 2nd place, but that was before senior butterflier Marcin Tarczynski split 20.95 for Cal’s B team and vaulted them into within .28 of Stanford. A 19.77 for B anchor Shayne Fleming, also a senior for the Bears, edged Stanford’s A team by .19, 1:28.65 – 1:28.84. Cal’s A team set a new pool record with their impressive 1:26.77 for the win. The old record stood at 1:27.19, set by Stanford in 2002.

This 1-2 relay finish for Cal portended things to come for the host Cardinal team and left them in a 13-point deficit early in the meet, 15-2.

1000 Freestyle
Cal’s senior distance star Jeremy Bagshaw took this race out hard right from the start, already with a body-length lead 200 yards in. His teammate, Adam Hinshaw, began separating himself from the rest of the pack by the 200 mark as Bagshaw began settling into his pace. At the halfway mark, Bagshaw and Hinshaw had created a sizable gap between them and the rest of the field, and the race for third appeared to be between Stanford’s Jimmy Yoder and Danny Thomson. Bagshaw looked like he was rocket-assisted on the last 50. He turned on his legs and split a completely absurd 23.32 to finish well ahead of the field in 9:04.20. Cal took second place points as well, as Hinshaw finished in 9:11.96. Stanford’s Yoder held on for 3rd with a 9:17.53, and with the completion of this event, Cal was up 30-6.

200 Freestyle
Cal had already built up incredible momentum through the first two events, and Stanford needed to, if not reverse it, at least stop the bleeding to stay in the meet. Cal would have none of it. Junior Will Hamilton was out fast for the Bears at the 50 with a 22.81 and held onto first through the 100 mark with Stanford’s Tom Kremer and the rest of the field nipping at his heels. Kremer and Cal’s Trent Williams and Long Gutierrez were all within a tenth of each other. With a 50 left to go, it looked like Kremer might have a shot at a win if he pulled off an amazing last 50. It was a fight to the finish, and Cal emerged the clear victor, taking not just the top 2, but top 3 spots. Hamilton, Williams, and Gutierrez swept the event in 1:36.69, 1:37.60, and 1:37.81, respectively. Kremer was the top Cardinal finisher in 4th place with a 1:37.83, a heartbreaking .02 behind Gutierrez.

50 Freestyle
The freestyle events weren’t treating the Cardinal very well up to this point, and the 50 freestyle offered no respite here. Sophomore standout Tyler Messerschmidt took immediate control over the race from the start, already a few feet ahead of the rest of the field by the turn. With what looked like slow and intentional strokes under the flags, he cruised into the wall for the win in 20.13. He led a back-to-back 1-2-3 sweep for Cal, with Ryan Murphy and sophomore Nick Dillinger touching in 20.34 and 20.38 to round out the top spots. Thomas Stephens finished 4th for the Cardinal in 20.53, although Fabio Gimondi of Cal, out of the exhibition heat, actually finished ahead of him in 20.47. Only the top 3 swimmers from either team can score points regardless of exhibition status – this point becomes relevant later, as we’ll see.

200 IM
The event schedule finally relented on the freestyle events – would that finally slow the Cal freight train? Would Stanford freshman Travis Johns‘ pink suit sufficiently distract his competitors? Apparently the pink suit wasn’t the good luck charm the Cardinal needed. Cal’s Jacob Pebley rocketed through the butterfly and backstroke to turn at the 100 with a 49.76, well ahead of the rest of the field, but sophomore Josh Prenot responded in breaststroke, taking the lead at the 150 with Stanford freshman Max Williamson just behind. It was another Cal win, but it was actually the first event in which the Cardinal finished higher than 3rd. Williamson touched second, scoring a bit of a relief for the Stanford fans in attendance.

The score stood 76 – 17, a runaway for the Bears.

1M Diving
Kristian Ipsen
led a Cardinal sweep of the 1M event with a nearly 100-point victory over teammate Conner Kuremsky, 440.48 – 344.55. Senior Noah Garcia took third place honors for the Cardinal, just back from Kuremsky in 330.00. Stanford’s divers made up some serious ground and brought the score to 79 – 33.

100 Butterfly
Stanford’s Connor Black and Gray Umbach were out 1-2 at the 50, trying to put the Cardinal back in contention. But Cal senior Marcin Tarczynski roared back in the final 50, splitting an impressive 24.62, to take 1st in 47.32. Stanford held onto the 2nd and 3rd spots as Black and Umbach touched just behind in 47.76 and 47.82, respectively.

100 Freestyle
Messerschmidt put the exclamation point on a dominating sprint free performance here this morning – again making it look like he wasn’t trying through the last few strokes, but winning anyway – in what looked like a easy 43.39. Seth Stubblefield was 2nd in 44.24 for another convincing 1-2 Cal sweep, and Kremer nabbed 3rd place points for Stanford, finishing in 44.73.

100 Backstroke
Could David Nolan pull out a badly needed win for the Cardinal? Ryan Murphy answered by flipping well ahead of the field at 22.91 and never relented. Nolan appeared to make up some ground on the last lap, but Murphy touched first in 47.02. Nolan swam a solid 47.78, and Cal’s Pebley was just behind in 48.05.

500 Freestyle
In a reprise of the 1000 freestyle, Bagshaw was out with a body length lead by the 100 mark, this time over teammate Gutierrez. Turning in 1:42.16 at the 200, Bagshaw made it clear he was putting Shaun Phillips‘ 2006 pool record of 4:19.26 on notice. He’d fallen off the pace just a bit by the halfway mark, but he was so far ahead of the rest of the field at that point that at least the win was guaranteed. Bagshaw finished in 4:20.85, but the excitement came courtesy of his teammates, who rounded out a dominating performance in an impressive 1-2-3-4 Cal sweep of the heat. Gutierrez was 2nd in 4:30.40, and Hinshaw was just behind in 4:30.96. Though Janardan Burns was officially 4th in 4:31.94 for Cal, 4th place points went to the top Cardinal finisher, Justin Buck, who was just behind in 4:32.09.

Cal had long since locked up the win in terms of swimming and diving points, yes, but Stanford was quietly running away with (underappreciated) style points on the heels of Bryan Offutt‘s impressive facial hair display. This writer has never seen a beard requiring hair ties make it through a 500. Offutt was 7th in 4:33.93.

3M Diving
Ipsen completed his signature sweep of the diving events, winning easily in 463.05 on the 3M springboard. It was another Stanford 1-2-3 sweep, as teammates Bradley Christensen and Kuremsky finished second and third, respectively.

100 Breaststroke
If Cal had a weakness that Stanford could take advantage of, it would probably be in the breaststroke events. But Chuck Katis, who had an impressive sprint breaststroke split in the opening medley relay, silenced any such thoughts, as he roared out to the lead at the 50 in 25.65 and held on for the win in 54.26. Prenot was second in 54.65, and Stanford’s freshman breaststroker Daniel Le was the top Cardinal finisher in 3rd with a 54.84.

200 Freestyle Relay
David Nolan ended the day with the fastest overall 50 freestyle – swimming right next to Messerschmidt, he touched him out on the leadoff leg by .04, 20.02 – 20.06. Any momentum this gained the Cardinal, though, was erased over the next 3 legs. This relay played out just like the opening 200 medley relay, with Cal’s A and B teams finishing 1st and 2nd. Cal’s B team hung on by .04 for 2nd place over Stanford’s A team, 1:20.69 to 1:20.73.

The final score? 169-74. Not a great day for Cardinal fans, but both teams will be back in action in a couple weeks in Federal Way, WA, for the Pac-12 Championship meet. Clearly, neither team was rested for this meet, but it will be interesting to see how this plays out for both teams into the rapidly-approaching championship portion of the season.

Full results available here.

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10 years ago

Interesting meet on Saturday. I certainly thought the meet would be much closer. No doubt, Stanford will be swimming much faster at both Pac12s and NCAAs. Thomson was a prime example…looked really tired, and we all know he can swim MUCH faster. Will be interesting to follow how Stanford does for the remaining two championship meets. I have no doubt they will swim fast…just how fast is the question.

One nice story is Daniel Le’s efforts. He’s progressed well in a short time already. He was right there with Katis this meet, and Katis did a 52.74 at Winter Nationals in December. Will be fun to watch Le over the next couple meets.

Morgan, what’s your take on Charlie Wiser?… Read more »

Reply to  SwimminIsGood
10 years ago

Re: Wiser, I know he was beat up pretty bad early on in practices coming off of water polo and the coaches are happy with his progress but that’s about it. I don’t know much about his career in-season times (hard to find online), but all accounts are that he’s at or better where he’s been in year’s past, despite being more broken down.

10 years ago

I’m going to defend Stanford, with the same words that I’ve defended Cal and Durden’s strategies with for years now. It is a dual meet. This isn’t basketball – in response to the comment above – where training is light and games can be played basically every other day, year-round, at a high level. If you trained and raced fast in swimming every other day for a year you would most likely have permanent damage and regress in most aspects of competition and life, not just suffer tired legs and stingers.

It is the minority of even elite swimmers that can race fast many weeks or more in succession, and I would challenge anyone to duplicate or better someone like… Read more »

10 years ago

500. With the above comment said about Stanford being fine for just PAC 12’s, in my humble opinion Stanford should have put up a much stronger effort for a rivalry meet against their top most hated conference rival! Would you see the Stanford basketball team not show up for a game against Cal? I think NOT. Also, with that type of effort, Utah, who broke two USC pool records this weekend @ SC, including Morozov’s 100 free pool record, would have beaten Stanford at the end of the dual meet season just like they beat Zona at the beginning of the season and by a greater margin! Chew on that a bit.

10 years ago

Stanford will be just fine at PAC 12’s but everyone except Nolan will need to be fully rested because he is the only one with fast enough individual NCAA qualifying times. Cal is an extremely deep and talented team, and I just can’t see Michigan beating them at NCAA’s even with mega-points in the 200, 50,0 and 1650 freestyles.

10 years ago

Following the logic of the opening post the Cal women’s coach is not cutting it.

Judge the final product after tapers when you can really evaluate swimmer development.

I do observe that some of the elite schools sign very physically mature kids with diminishing upside and miss on the 150 pound kid with the concave chest that turns into a man over four years.

10 years ago

Stanford doesn’t get to put “7th (but we would have been 3rd if we didn’t disqualify 2 relays)” in the brochure.

It’s incredible how a team with so much can do so little. When Ted’s time is up, assuming that Scott doesn’t just inherit the position, USA Swimming should invest time and money to help Stanford find a coaching staff that will develop the large contingency of the National Junior Team that ends up at Stanford.

In 2012, with Skip, Ted and Lea at the helm, Stanford put 0 people on the Olympic Team. Lea left the team and the athletic department brought in a whole new coaching staff. The women’s swim team has seemingly started a new… Read more »

Reply to  Wow
10 years ago

I totally feel the same way with WOW. I like to see the sparks from this team. If the team is doing well, the recruits will wanna come and improve at the Farm.

Looking back in the 90s when we were so dominant with the Grote, Retterer, etc. We made so many Olympians. Stanford was the team to beat back then. Now they are hanging on the rope watching everyone passing them. I think Stanford has tons of talents out of high school. I am waiting to see they will be developed under Ted/Paul.

I wasn’t sure if the team was swimming tired or not. Yet, I have never seen the team got swept 1-3, 1-4 in so many… Read more »

Roger von Oech
Reply to  CARD FANS
10 years ago

I was also at the meet. As Morgan said, “It just wasn’t Stanford’s day.” Throw out the diving points and the score would’ve something like 163-42 Cal. Ugh!

What none of us knows is just how rested Stanford was for this meet. In a way, they looked like the Cal women (except Franklin) last week vs Stanford women: a bit tired, a bit dull, and losing the close finishes to Stanford. Yet, no one is expecting Cal women to perform poorly in the upcoming big meets.

I have faith in the coaching staff. They and their swimmers have a season-long plan: let’s watch them execute it. My guess is that in five weeks — after Stanford finishes 3rd or 4th… Read more »

Reply to  Roger von Oech
10 years ago

The problem is not so much that any one swimmer had a bad meet, it’s the fact that the whole team had a bad meet. Statistically, a whole team swimming poorly is relevant.

Yes, when you take out diving, the score was 163-42. BUT, let’s not forget that 31 of those points were gimme points. With the number of events at the meet (9 individual and 2 relays) and a minimum allowable score per event (3 for individual and 2 for relays), thus meaning that they scored 11 points over the bare minimum.

And true, we don’t know how rested they are. Looking at their performances thus far this season though, it is pretty easy to deduce around where they… Read more »

Morgan Priestley
Reply to  Wow
10 years ago

WOW… You’re right, they don’t put that in the brochure… But Stanford hasn’t won since 1998. How is last year’s finish any different? Have you been down on the program since then? And I suppose we have competing definitions on what the Stanford program is and where it has been… You call it a “sight for sore eyes”, as if it’s an unmitigated disaster.

Ted has continued to do some pretty dang good things with the sprint group there (the group he was chiefly responsible for when he worked with Kenney) for the last decade… Ben W-T being a world champ, Jason Dunford becoming an Olympic finalist, Godsoe turning into a 44 100 backstroker, Staab setting the NCAA record… Read more »

Morgan Priestley
10 years ago

CARD FANS, it sounds like you’ve only been looking at the bottom line. Stanford was 7th at NCAA’s, but just a few points out of 4th despite DQing not one, but TWO relays. If they didn’t DQ either of those, they would have been 3rd.

Pump the breaks. Stanford didn’t show up today, but Cal is also REALLY good. Their biggest “hole” is the breaststroke events, where they “only” have one guy who goes 52 from a flat start. They’re loaded everywhere else.

Card Fans
Reply to  Morgan Priestley
10 years ago

I hope so Morgan. I actually like the coaches a lot but looking at the progress of the freshmen class last year, I am a bit disappointed. I am expecting this class to be carrying the future of the Stanford Men’s Swimming back to glory. The women’s team was going backward a few years ago and now is looking really promising. With the new class coming in, we can contend with the rest of the country. It’s too bad that we will graduate some great seniors this year.

I will wait to see the results of the Pac 12 and see how the team will bounce back. I hope they were just tired at this dual meet.

Reply to  Morgan Priestley
10 years ago


As a Stanford fan, I’m glad to hear your hopeful perspective. I DVR’d the meet, brought the pizza and beer down to the man cave, was hoping for a meet like the women from a week ago. It didn’t take long to feel like I’d been punched in the gut, and it only got worse. The races in which Cal took 1st-4th (and maybe some with 5th, etc. as well) were brutal. I’m a big fan of Ted Knapp, so I really hope the team can bounce back. They just looked out of their league today.

10 years ago

awesome! can’t wait til the pac-12s and the ncaa’s. thanks for a great read.

About Carly Geehr

Carly burst onto the swimming scene in 1997 when she qualified for the Pan Pacific championships at the ripe old age of 12. She later earned a silver medal at the 1999 Pan American Games in the 800 free relay and competed on the World Cup circuit. A few shoulder and …

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