CAL vs UTAH (MEN’S & WOMEN’S DUAL)
- October 12, 2022
- Spieker Aquatics Complex, Berkeley, CA
- SCY (25 yards)
- Cal – 185
- Utah – 107
- Cal – 169
- Utah – 123
The Cal Golden Bears hosted the Utah Utes last week at Spieker Aquatics Complex, sweeping their conference opponent by convincing margins in both the men’s and women’s meets.
The tone was set immediately in the men’s meet, seeing Cal go 1-2-3 in the first event: the 200 medley relay. On the winning relay, Sebastian Somerset (22.56), Luke Rodarte (24.48), Dare Rose (21.23), and Bjorn Seeliger (18.90) teamed up to swim a 1:27.17. Seeliger’s split was just the first of a trio of fantastic swims from the junior, but more on that shortly. There were a few splits from Cal swimmers not on the ‘A’ relay who outsplit their ‘A’ relay counterparts. Sophomore Kai Crews led the ‘D’ relay off in 22.28, while sophomore Jacob Soderlund was 24.46 on the breast leg of the ‘B’, and senior Liam Bell was 21.05 on the fly leg of the ‘D’. In all, Cal’s fastest combination at this meet would have been 1:26.69.
Bjorn Seeliger would go on from the medley relay to win the men’s 100 free with a speedy 42.79. Seeliger was simply dominant, splitting 20.29 on the first 50m then coming home in 22.50. It was Cal sophomore Jack Alexy who came in second, swimming a 44.04. Though he swam exhibition (not for points), Cal’s Dylan Hawk finished third with a 44.50.
Seeliger would then cap off his meet by leading off Cal’s ‘A’ 200 free relay in 19.29, getting his relay out to a huge lead. Liam Bell would go second with a 19.62, then Robin Hanson split 19.76 on the third leg, and Gabriel Jett anchored in 20.04. Other notable splits from Cal include a 19.78 by Matt Jensen on the second leg of the ‘B’ relay, and a 19.96 on the third leg of the ‘C’, which was swum by freshman Colby Hatton.
With no Seeliger in the individual 50 free, Liam Bell won the race with a 19.86. It was a great swim from Bell, whose lifetime best sits at 19.48, a time which he posted at the NCAA Championships last season. Bell is primarily a breaststroker, though his sprint free seems to be improving considerably since he’s transferred to Cal for the 2021-2022 season.
Speaking of breaststroke, Cal fifth year Reece Whitley dominated the men’s 200 breast, clocking a 1:55.00. It was the only race Whitley swam at the meet, though he made the most of it, splitting 55.20 on the first 100, then tacked a 29.77 and 30.03 on the end for a 59.80 on the second 100. Notably, Whitley was the only swimmer in the field to break 2:00.
Freshman Matthew Chai (Cal) picked up a win in the 1000 free, speeding to a 9:07.33. Putting his distance skill on display, Chai threw down a massive negative split, going 4:38.84 on the first 500 of the race, then screaming home in 4:28.49. His last 100 was even more exceptional, as the young Golden Bear split 50.11 to bring it home.
Cal sophomore Gabriel Jett swam a 1:35.58 to lead a 1-2-3 -4 charge by the Golden Bears. Robin Hanson took second in 1:36.56, while Patrick Callan swam a 1:36.89 for third, and Michael Petrides, though he swam exhibition, finished fourth with a 1:39.04.
Jett went on to post the top time in the 100 fly, although he swam exhibition. He swam a 47.65, while Hanson, also swimming exhibition, was second with a 48.09. The official winner of the race was Utah sophomore Marko Kovacic, who swam a 48.66. Utah teammate Evan VanBrocklin was right behind Kovacic, touching in 48.94.
VanBrocklin would go on to be the official winner of the 200 IM, swimming a 1:53.98. It was Cal’s Destin Lasco who swam the top time in the 200 IM, clocking a 1:46.50. Lasco won the 100 back in 46.54, touching first by nearly two seconds.
Isabelle Stadden was a star for the Cal women, posting a fast October time of 1:52.96 to win the women’s 200 back. Stadden was phenomenal in the race, splitting 28.72, 28.78, and 28.54 on the final three 50s respectively.
Stadden would also win the 50 free in 23.02, touching out teammates McKenna Stone (23.10), Emily Gantriis (23.16), and Ella Mazurek (23.20). Stadden would team up with Gantriis and Mazurek, as well as Eloise Riley, to win the 200 free relay. Riley led the team off in 22.82, which was faster than it took to win the individual 50 free. Gantriis then split 22.96, followed by Stadden with a speedy 22.49, and Mazurek nearly as fast, splitting 22.56 on the anchor. The Golden Bears combined for a 1:30.83 to win by nearly three seconds.
Stadden also led the Cal ‘A’ 200 medley relay off, splitting 24.79. Hers marked the fastest backstroke split in the field by far. Alicia Henry provided a 28.14 breast split, followed by Mia Kragh with a 24.06 on fly, and Gantriis anchored that relay in 22.80. They dipped under 1:40, winning the race in 1:39.79. Jade Neser was slightly faster on the breast leg of the ‘B’ relay, splitting 27.92, but ‘C’ team breaststroker Leah Polonsky was the fastest, splitting a 27.70. The ‘B’ team also saw a faster fly split, with McKenna Stone splitting 23.71, and a faster free split, with Eloise Riley anchoring in 22.60. The ‘C’ relay was anchored by Mazurek, who split 22.45, marking Cal’s fastest 50 free out of the entire meet.
After splitting 23.71 on the fly leg of the 200 medley relay, Stone went on to post the fastest time in the field in the 100 fly. She clocked a 54.00, though she swam exhibition. Teammates Ayla Spitz (54.96), Rachel Klinker (54.98), and Annika McEnroe (55.16) were the next three swimmers in, while Utah’s Kayla Miller was the official winner of the event, swimming a 56.72.
Like the 50 free, Cal was dominant in the 100 free. Riley won the race in 50.19, touching as the only swimmer under 51 seconds. Gantriis finished second (51.10), while Kragh was third (51.62), and Emma Davidson finished fourth (51.68), but swam exhibition.
The 200 free was the same, seeing Cal post the top four finishers. Riley touched first in that race as well, swimming a 1:49.47 to finish as the only swimmer under 1:50. Rachel Klinker was next, swimming a 1:50.13, while Mia Motekaitis was third in 1:51.17. Emma Davidson was again fourth, swimming exhibition, with a 1:51.44.
Jade Neser and Alicia Henry split the breast events for Cal. Neser swam a 1:02.37 to win the 100 breast, getting out the early lead and holding on through the finish. Henry would then take the 200 breast in 2:15.57, also building an early lead and maintaining it through the finish.
Fani Fabian (Cal) took the 1000 free with a 10:04.97. She would then go on to make it a distance sweep, posting a 4:55.85 to win the 500 free.
Utah’s Summer Stanfield was the official winner of the 200 IM, swimming a 2:03.57. Leah Polonsky was the fastest swimmer in the field, but swam exhibition, finishing just ahead of Stanfield with a 2:03.25. In a mirror of that race, Polonsky narrowly beat out Stanfield in the 200 fly, clocking a 2:00.52 to Stanfield’s 2:00.59.
Ayla Spitz took the 100 back in 54.17.