CAL Women Look to Defend Home Turf in Big Meet; No. 10 Cal Hosts No. 5 Stanford

Berkeley, CA, February 11. CAL hosts Stanford on Saturday at 12 noon to close out the regular season. It is the final home meet for seven Golden Bear seniors, the Bears report. There will be a short ceremony before the meet recognizing them.

Both Cal and Stanford come off a Southern California sweep Jan. 28-29, when the Golden Bears (9-1 overall, 5-1 Pac-10) and Cardinal (6-1, 4-0) both proved to be superior to visiting No. 11 UCLA and No. 18 USC.

Stanford and Cal have each suffered just one loss this season. The Bears fell at No. 4 Arizona on Jan. 21, while Stanford stumbled against then-No. 6 Texas on Oct. 30. The Cardinal are perfect against conference opponents this season.

Following the meet, there will be an alumni and donor reception in the Haas Pavilion Club Room. The cost is $10.

Last year, Cal posted a thrilling 151-149 victory over host Stanford. It was the first time the Bears had defeated the Cardinal since 1976, and it was only the third time Cal has ever beaten Stanford. Heading into the final event, the Golden Bears trailed by seven points but made up the deficit with first- and third-place finishes in the 400-meter freestyle relay. Stanford holds a 28-3 all-time series record against the Golden Bears.

Stanford finished fifth at last year's NCAA championships, just 1.5 points ahead of the sixth-place Golden Bears. This year, the Cardinal feature three Olympians, freshman Caroline Bruce and juniors Kristen Caverly and Dana Kirk. At the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Kirk was ninth in the 200-meter butterfly, Caverly was 17th in the 200 backstroke, and Bruce posted a ninth-place finish in the 200 breaststroke.

Stanford has a 4-0 mark against conference competition this season. Last weekend, the Cardinal defeated USC, 193-103, and UCLA, 174-126. Earlier, Stanford beat both Arizona, 165-135, and Arizona State, 177-117.

Last weekend, Cal defeated No. 11 UCLA, 161-139, and No. 18 USC, 175.5-124.5. The Bear-Bruin showdown came down to the final event, and the Bears took first and third in the 200-yard freestyle relay to ensure the win. The team of seniors Keiko Amano, Lauren Medina, and Emma Palsson and freshman Kelly Stravers finished first in 1:34.58, edging out the Bruins, who clocked a 1:34.75 second-place showing. Cal recorded seven other first-place finishes on the day.

Cal's first-place finishers were as follows: the 200 medley relay team of Palsson, sophomore Sherry Tsai, and freshmen Genevieve Patterson and Emily Silver (1:42.43), junior Helen Silver in the 100 backstroke (54.93) and 200 backstroke (1:58.79), Emily Silver in the 50 freestyle (23.31) and 100 freestyle (50.70), Patterson in the 100 breaststroke (1:02.69) and junior Ashley Chandler in the 500 freestyle (4:50.98). All of these times are NCAA B qualifying marks. Helen Silver's time in the 100 backstroke is the fastest by a Cal swimmer this season.

Against USC, the Golden Bears won 10 events, led by Emily Silver, who took first three times, and Helen Silver, who finished first twice. Emily Silver took first in the 50-yard freestyle (23.33), 100 freestyle (50.75) and 200 freestyle (1:48.85). All three are NCAA B qualifying times. Helen Silver won the 200 backstroke in an NCAA A qualifying time of 1:58.00 and the 100 backstroke in an NCAA B qualifying time of 55.14. Tsai placed first in the 200 IM in an NCAA B qualifying time of 2:02.85.

Sophomore Anne Babicz won the 100 breaststroke in an NCAA B qualifying time of 1:02.90, and Patterson took first in the 200 breaststroke (2:19.36). The 200 medley relay team of Tsai, Patterson, Babicz and Medina won the event in 1:44.37, and Cal sophomore Lauren Andrews, freshman Kelly Stravers, senior Keiko Amano and Emily Silver took first in the 400 freestyle relay in 3:28.10.

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