PALO ALTO, California, January 24. THE Stanford Cardinal men’s and women’s teams breezed through today’s dual meet against Arizona, getting crucial wins in several events from top-end talent as well as from teammates that put the meet away early.
The Stanford men won their meet with a score of 185-xxx, while Stanford’s women’s team put up a 157-138 win.
One of the key swims for the Stanford women’s team came in the 200 free, as Lia Neal kept Margo Geer at bay with a winning time of 1:47.06 to Geer’s 1:47.20. With Neal ranked third in the collegiate ranks this season and Geer 11th, perhaps the win should not be a surprise, though Neal had not been putting up fast in-season swims. Her best 200 free outside of the 1:43.86 she swam in December was a 1:49.40. Geer would get skunked by Stanford again in the 50 free, one of her NCAA title events. Maddy Schaefer won that today with a 22.24 to Geer’s 22.85. Geer would get her revenge in the 100 free, beating Schaefer and Neal with a 49.26. Schaefer was second with a 49.34 and Neal took third with a 49.52.
Felicia Lee continued a strong season with two more wins in the 100 back and 100 fly. She took the backstroke race with a 53.68 (one of a few 1-2-3 finishes for the Cardinal) and won the sprint fly with a 53.36.
Maya DiRado was fastest in two of her top events as well, taking the 200 fly with a 1:5740 and posting the fastest time in the 400 IM with a 4:12.75. The 400 IM was the final individual event of the day, and with the meet victory assured, DiRado’s swim was done as exhibition.
Arizona had some highlights – three of them, in fact – from Bonnie Brandon, who won three events. She posted a 9:47.52 in the 1000 free, her fastest of the season by eight seconds. She needed that time to keep Stanford’s Andie Taylor from winning, as the Cardinal senior placed second with a 9:48.10. Brandon won the 200 back later with a 1:57.06, faster than the 1:57.86 Missy Franklin swam a few miles away in Berkeley earlier today. Also swimming faster than Franklin was Stanford’s Annemarie Thayer, who was second with a 1:57.35. Brandon’s final event was the 500 free, and she held off fast-charging teammate Tjasa Oder in the final yards, posting a 4:52.28 to Oder’s 4:52.95.
Also winning multiple events was Stanford’s Katie Olsen, who took the 100 breast with a 1:00.41 and the 200 breast in 2:11.96.
The men’s meet had two of the top swimmers in Division I trying to give their teams the most points possible. Arizona’s Kevin Cordes and Stanford’s David Nolan both won two individual events and were each part of a winning relay, but it was Stanford’s depth, especially in freestyle, that secured the win.
After popping a 52.98 breaststroke split on Arizona’s winning 400 medley relay, Cordes cruised to wins in the 100 breast with a 53.44 and 20 breast with a 1:57.70.
For Nolan, he captured the 100 back (one of his two NCAA title events) in 47.97 and led a 1-2-3 finish in the 100 free with a 44.34. It’s the first individual 100 free Nolan has swum this season, and one of his best in-season swims. It’s likely that he’ll choose the 200 back at the NCAA instead of the 100 free, but he could be a key part of Stanford’s free relays. That was evident in the 200 free relay to close the meet, where Nolan split a 19.79.
The other double winner in the men’s meet was Stanford’s Danny Thomson, who posted a 9:16.79 in the 1000 free to lead a 1-2-3 finish, and a 4:27.03 in the 500 free to guide Stanford to another 1-2-3 sweep.
Other wins for the Stanford men include: Tom Kremer in the 200 fly (1:47.13), Connor Black in the 100 fly (48.18) and Max Williamson in the 400 IM (3:51.58). Kristian Ipsen, as expected, won both springboard diving events.
Besides Cordes, Arizona picked up wins from Brian Stevens in the 50 free with a 19.99 and Michael Sheppard in the 200 back (1:47.70).