PHOENIX, Arizona, March 6. ALL indications point to the end of an era for Stanford's men's swim team this week at the Pac 12 championships. The Cardinal was looking for a 32nd consecutive team title, but the California Golden Bears are holding onto a 63-point lead going into today's competition, the final day of the meet. Tom Shields, our cover personality for the March issue of Swimming World Magazine, won the 100 fly and 100 back in preparation to defend both titles at the NCAAs. Stanford was unable to win any events on Cal's strongest day, but could come roaring back today.
Kevin Cordes' 51.4 in the prelims of the 100 breast wasn't the big story in that event, but rather Vlad Morozov's 52.06 for second place behind Cordes in the final. Morozov hadn't had a strong individual event to swim on the second day, but now looks like he will swim for a spot in the 100 breast final at the NCAAs to help the Trojans score some points there.
The first prelims session of the NCAA Division II swimming and diving championships started earlier today in Birmingham, Alabama, and the Drury Panthers will suffer a setback on their women's squad as freestyler Wai Ting Yu will be competing with a torn ACL. She was to be the key leg on Drury's relays and contend for individual titles in Drury's quest to get back the women's title they lost last year to Wayne State. So far it looks she's doing OK with the injury, tying for fifth seed in the 50 free prelims. The top event in prelims was the men's 200 IM, where the top six all swam 1:47s within six tenths of each other. Piotr Jachowicz of Wayne State was second in that event last year, and is looking for nothing less than first in tonight's finals. Be sure to stay with swimmingworld.com and on our Twitter page for complete coverage from the deck in Alabama, thanks to our special correspondent Richie Kryzanowski.