USC’s Scott Wins Triple, But Cal Prevails in Pac-12 Showdown


  • Results
  • Hosted by USC
  • Friday, January 26th
  • 25 Yards
  • Dual Meet Format


  • CAL: 169
  • USC: 131

USC’s Riley Scott pulled off a winning triple against Pac-12 rival Cal, but the Trojans ultimately fell to the Bears by 38 points. Scott swept her specialty breaststroke races, using her back-half speed to secure the 100 breast win in 1:00.73 over teammate Maggie Aroesty (1:01.16). Scott and Aroesty went 1-2 again in the 200 breast. Scott dominated in 2:10.21, while Aroesty followed in 2:13.34. The Trojan duo put together a final 1-2 punch in the 200 IM, as both Scott (1:59.27) and Aroesty (2:00.94) ran down Cal’s Sarah Darcel (2:01.12) on the back half.

Cal’s Amy Bilquist was one of the Bears’ top performers, sweeping the backstroke races ahead of teammate and reigning NCAA champ Kathleen Baker. In the 100 back, Baker (52.71) led up front with a 25.69 split, but Bilquist (52.68) chased her down to win it by just 3 hundredths. They were nearly even through the front half of the 200 back, with Baker taking a slight lead after the 3rd 50, but Bilquist hammered home once again to win by hundredths in 1:54.97 to Baker’s 1:55.02.

Katie McLaughlin stepped up to give the Bears a couple of individual wins as well. In the 200 fly, she set the pace early on, turning in 55.41 at the 100 en route to a 1:55.03 victory. McLaughlin returned for the 500 free, battling for the win with teammate Chenoa Devine. Up until the 350-yard mark, Devine (4:51.39) held the lead, but McLaughlin made her move on the closing splits to win it in 4:50.69.


LOS ANGELES – Amy BilquistKatie McLaughlin and Briana Thai claimed two events apiece and Cal swept both relays as the Golden Bears won at USC, 169-131, Friday – the team’s first victory on the road in the series since 2012.

“I thought we did a nice job of handling traveling, being ready to go and racing well against a strong USC team,” said head coach Teri McKeever, whose squad flew from the Bay Area to Los Angeles early Friday morning. “We responded well after the first break, focusing and staying tough.”

Cal, which improved to 8-0 on the year, started off with a narrow victory in the 200-yard medley relay, as the Bears’ McLaughlin out-touched the Trojans’ Marta Ciesla by .64 seconds at the finish to prevail in 1:38.24 – Cal’s fastest time in a dual meet so far this year.

McLaughlin came back later in the meet to take first in the 200 butterfly by nearly 1.5 seconds, finishing in 1:55.03. She also won the 500 free in 4:50.69, leading a 1-2-3 Cal sweep that included runner-up Chenoa Devine (4:51.39) and Robin Neumann in third place in 4:52.24.

Bilquist earned victories in both backstroke events, taking the 100-yard race in 52.68 and the 200-yard race in 1:54.97. In both cases, Kathleen Baker was a close second, while Courtney Mykkanen was third at the 200 distance.

Thai and Phoebe LaMay were the top two placers on both the 1-meter and 3-meter springboards, with Thai edging her teammate by three points both times.

Senior Noemie Thomas was the only other Bear to win an individual event, claiming her specialty – the 100 fly – in 51.74. Sophomore Maddie Murphy was right behind in 52.43.

Cal wrapped up the meet with a two-second victory in the 400 free relay. Neumann, McLaughlin, Murphy and Bilquist touched in 3:17.43. Like the 200 medley relay, the time was Cal’s best in a dual meet in 2017-18.

The Bears return to action Saturday, visiting UCLA for a noon meet, and they conclude the regular season at Stanford on Saturday, Feb. 10.


Junior Riley Scott won three races and sophomore Louise Hansson won twice to lead the No. 9 USC women’s swimming and diving team, which fell for the first time this season in a 169-131 loss to No. 3 California on Friday (Jan. 26) at the Uytengsu Aquatics Center.

USC, which finished first in seven events, falls to 7-1 overall, 4-1 in the Pac-12. Cal improves to 8-0, 5-0.

Scott helped the Trojans dominate the breaststroke today, as it has all season, combining with freshman Maggie Aroesty to finish 1-2 in both distances today. Scott won the 100 in 1:00.73 to Aroesty’s 1:01.16 and the duo went 2:10.21 and 2:13.34, respectively, in the 200.

Scott completed her trifecta in the final individual race, taking the 200y IM in 1:59.27 with Aroesty second again in 2:00.94.

The Trojans also dominated the freestyle sprints today. Freshman Marta Ciesla, in the closest race of the day, out-touched Cal Olympian Abbey Weitzeil, 22.47 to 22.52, to win the 50y free. Following the 15-minute break, Hansson won the 100y free in 48.76, beating the Bears’ Maddie Murphy (49.95) while Ciesla was third in 50.15.

Hansson’s win was her second, complementing her first in the 200y free, a 1:45.86 to edge Cal’s Robin Neumann’s 1:46.64 and Weitzeil’s 1:48.28.

Junior Elizabeth Stinson won the 1000y free in a season best 9:50.10 with sophomore teammate Becca Mann third in 9:52.28.

USC posted its second-fastest 200y medley of the season to open the meet with senior Hannah Weiss, Scott, sophomore Catherine Sanchez and Ciesla going 1:38.74, second to Cal by 0.54. The Trojans’ 400y free relay of Hansson, Ciesla, Sanchez and senior Lexie Malazdrewicz was second in 3:19.40, also second-best on the year.

Cal’s Amy Bilquist and Amy Baker went 1-2 in both the 100y and 200y back events, the latter leading a 1-2-3 finish. The Bears also took the top three spots in the 500y free, led by Katie McLaughlin. McLaughlin also won the 200y fly with Trojan junior Maddie Wright fighting to second in 1:56.51.

The Bears’ Noemie Thomas (51.74) and Murphy (52.43) went 1-2 in the 100y fly with Hansson third (52.89).

Cal’s Briana Thai and Phoebe LaMay finished first and second in both the 1-meter and 3-meter springboards. Junior Maddie Witt led USC on 3-meter (285.60) while sophomore Carly Souzatook third for USC on 1-meter (285.53), just 4.2 points out of first.

USC hosts No. 2 Stanford on Saturday at noon as the Trojans honor Weiss and Malazdrewicz on senior day.

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2 years ago

Has anyone else noticed Katie McLaughlin’s sprint splits this season?!?!? They’re pretty good!

2 years ago

Cal is strong in the back, fly and free.

Who do they have for the breaststroke?

Reply to  marklewis
2 years ago

They haven’t had anyone who can do much in 50/100 since Jessica Hardy many years ago.

Reply to  ArtVanDeLegh10
2 years ago

They had Caitlin Leverenz too

Reply to  Ervin
2 years ago

She was a 200 breaststroker/IMer.

Reply to  ArtVanDeLegh10
2 years ago

….who was on all their medley relays

Reply to  marklewis
2 years ago

It’s a real bummer when you have to use the freakin 50 free American record holder as your breaststroke leg!

2 years ago

Bummer, but Weitzeil’s 50 Br’s pretty decent for a sprint freestyler! Well Baker can kinda fake it too if called upon 🙂

I’d give freshman Harrison a season or two, she’s fast improving. Darcel’s more of an IMer but could work in a pinch with more development.

Cal also has Roses, Dilsaver, Buckley, Tuck & Skorus-Neely on the roster for breast. Additional help will flow in next year with Rajic.

Now if they can just land Walsh for 2020…that 58.19 of hers sure would work wonders for the Golden Bear’s medleys 🙂

Reply to  swammer
2 years ago

Baker had a sub 100 breast pre-college. Can’t swap out her current events trifecta for that at NCAAs.

Reply to  KNOW IT ALL
2 years ago

But maybe you could have Bilquist swim the back on the relays?

Reply to  KNOW IT ALL
2 years ago

Not sure why I got downvotes for being correct…link:

She got 1st in 3 events last year. She isn’t beating Lilly King anytime soon in 1BR…downvote elsewhere please

Reply to  KNOW IT ALL
2 years ago

You got downvotes cause your initial comment didn’t make sense… I think you were trying to say, “Baker had a sub minute 100 breast pre-college”, not “sub 100 pre-college”

2 years ago

I thought USC women would be better this year?

About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona (2013-2015) and the University of Florida (2011-2013). While her college swimming career left a bit to be desired, her Snapchat chin selfies and hot takes on Twitter do not disappoint. She's also a high school graduate of The …

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