It was all Cal Berkeley on night 1 of the men’s NCAA Championships winning both the 200 freestyle relay and the 400 medley relay. Freshman Ryan Murphy put the Cal Bears in great position, leading the field after the backstroke leg with an incredible split of 44.91. Murphy’s lead-off leg will count as an official time, improving USA Swimming’s 17-18 National Age Group 100 backstroke record by .41. The previous national age group record holder was current Texas freshman, Jack Conger, with a 45.32. Murphy does not turn 19 until July of this year, and therefore has a few more months to chase down the NAG records.
Conger and Murphy are swimming different events tomorrow as Conger is entered in the 100 butterfly and Murphy is in the 100 backstroke, but you can expect a fantastic race on Saturday in the 200 backstroke. Conger and Murphy are both seeded top 8 and to make it even more interesting, Ryan Murphy owns the 200 backstroke pool record in Jack Conger’s new home pool.