Cal Golden Bears Shock Virginia to Snag 200 Free Relay NCAA Title; Douglass Rips 21.0 Lead-Off

izzy-ivey-cal-200-free-relay
Photo Courtesy: NCAA Media

With so much attention on the Virginia Cavaliers heading into tonight and their pursuit of potentially winning every single swimming event on Thursday night of the NCAA Division I Women’s Swimming & Diving Championships, it was actually the Cal Golden Bears that stole the show in the 200 free relay, out-touching the Cavaliers with a 1:25.78 to Virginia’s 1:25.97. NC State also was within the leaders in third at 1:26.27.

Finals were delayed 30 minutes due to a tornado warning in the Greensboro area that caused yet another unpredictable shift for these athletes to adjust to, which they took in stride.

It looked to be all Virginia early as the Cavaliers’ Kate Douglass ripped a massive 21.09 on the lead-off leg, putting her third on the all-time list behind only Abbey Weitzeil (20.90) and Erika Brown (21.03) as she will be the top seed in the 50 freestyle later tonight. Cal was led off by Eloise Riley (22.09), who gave way to three Golden Bears that all finished in 21.2s.

Cal’s Emily Gantriis out of Denmark closed the gap with a 21.23 split to Virginia’s Lexi Cuomo (21.63) who looked to maybe have had a bad breakout on her start. It was at this point as well that NC State was making the race interesting with Katharine Berkoff (21.81) and Kylee Alons (21.27) on the first two legs, after they scratched out of the 800 free relay last night to go all in on the four sprint relays. Both of them will be in the A-Final of the 50 freestyle later on.

On the third leg, NC State’s Sirena Rowe (21.47) gave the Wolfpack a narrow lead ahead of Cal’s Elise Garcia (21.24), who improved from barely being a Pac-12 scorer in 2020, and Kyla Valls (21.97), leaving it to the all important anchor leg.

Junior veteran Izzy Ivey showed incredible poise with a 21.22 split on the anchor leg for Cal to hold off Virginia freshman Alex Walsh (21.28) and NC State’s Sophie Hansson (21.72).

Cal won in the end at 1:25.78 to win its seventh national title in the 200 freestyle relay, joining the teams from 2000, 2011, 2015-2017 & 2019 as national champions in this event as the Golden Bears have developed a dynasty in this event with five wins coming from the last 10 years. Virginia was second (1:25.97) and NC State was third (1:26.27) while Missouri was fourth from the prior timed final heat at 1:27.01.

“It is such a great honor to win,” Ivey said after the race. “We wanted to keep up the Cal legacy in the 200 free relay so we went for the gold on this one. We had that tornado delay and Teri (McKeever) has really prepared us for scenarios like that, so we were one of the best prepared teams.”

Ohio State (1:27.77), Alabama (1:27.92), North Carolina (1:28.08) and Stanford and Louisville (1:28.16) also placed in the top eight.

The quickest splits out of the top three came from Michigan’s Maggie MacNeil (21.13), Missouri’s Sarah Thompson (21.25), Stanford’s Emma Wheal (21.63) and Ohio State’s Amy Fulmer (21.73).

 Event 2  Women 200 Yard Freestyle Relay
==================================================================================
         NCAA: N 1:24.55  3/21/2019 California
                          M Murphy, K McLaughlin, A Bilquist, A Weitzeil
         Meet: M 1:24.55  3/21/2019 California
                          M Murphy, K McLaughlin, A Bilquist, A Weitzeil
     American: A 1:24.55  3/21/2019 California
                          M Murphy, K McLaughlin, A Bilquist, A Weitzeil
      US Open: O 1:24.55  3/21/2019 California
                          M Murphy, K McLaughlin, A Bilquist, A Weitzeil
         Pool: P 1:26.15  2/21/2019 NC State
                          K Perry, K Alons, S Rowe, S Hansson
    School                                 Seed     Finals Points 
==================================================================================
  1 California                          1:26.84    1:25.78P  40  
     1) Riley, Eloise SO              2) r:0.16 Gantriis, Emily FR    
     3) r:0.08 Garcia, Elise JR       4) r:0.14 Ivey, Isabel JR       
    r:+0.65  10.82        22.09 (22.09)
          32.11 (10.02)       43.32 (21.23)
          53.50 (10.18)     1:04.56 (21.24)
        1:14.61 (10.05)     1:25.78 (21.22)
  2 Virginia                            1:26.54    1:25.97P  34  
     1) Douglass, Kate SO             2) r:0.08 Cuomo, Lexi SO        
     3) r:0.17 Valls, Kyla SR         4) r:0.29 Walsh, Alex FR        
    r:+0.65  10.27        21.09 (21.09)
          31.30 (10.21)       42.72 (21.63)
          53.24 (10.52)     1:04.69 (21.97)
        1:14.91 (10.22)     1:25.97 (21.28)
  3 NC State                            1:26.59    1:26.27   32  
     1) Berkoff, Katharine SO         2) r:0.21 Alons, Kylee JR       
     3) r:0.12 Rowe, Sirena SR        4) r:0.18 Hansson, Sophie JR    
    r:+0.68  10.61        21.81 (21.81)
          31.94 (10.13)       43.08 (21.27)
          53.12 (10.04)     1:04.55 (21.47)
        1:14.93 (10.38)     1:26.27 (21.72)
  4 Missouri                            1:27.36    1:27.01   30  
     1) Keil, Megan JR                2) r:0.25 Thompson, Sarah SR    
     3) r:0.16 Moderski, Alex SO      4) r:0.15 Feddersen, Amy SO     
    r:+0.65  10.73        22.01 (22.01)
          32.13 (10.12)       43.26 (21.25)
          53.48 (10.22)     1:05.05 (21.79)
        1:15.47 (10.42)     1:27.01 (21.96)
  5 Ohio St                             1:27.53    1:27.77   28  
     1) Petrak, Taylor SR             2) r:0.30 Zenick, Katherine FR  
     3) r:0.25 Fulmer, Amy SO         4) r:0.20 Rayner, Freya SR      
    r:+0.63  10.75        22.31 (22.31)
          32.63 (10.32)       44.27 (21.96)
          54.74 (10.47)     1:06.00 (21.73)
        1:16.33 (10.33)     1:27.77 (21.77)
  6 Alabama                             1:27.02    1:27.92   26  
     1) Antoniou, Kalia JR            2) r:0.18 Scott, Morgan JR      
     3) r:0.12 Molnar, Flora SR       4) r:0.25 Dupre, Cora SO        
    r:+0.71  10.66        21.99 (21.99)
          32.11 (10.12)       43.81 (21.82)
          54.12 (10.31)     1:06.08 (22.27)
        1:16.36 (10.28)     1:27.92 (21.84)
  7 UNC                                 1:28.74    1:28.08   24  
     1) Countie, Grace JR             2) r:0.26 Lowe, Heidi JR        
     3) r:0.16 Lindner, Sophie JR     4) r:0.24 Dragelin, Amy SO      
    r:+0.70  10.49        21.81 (21.81)
          32.18 (10.37)       43.80 (21.99)
          54.09 (10.29)     1:05.78 (21.98)
        1:16.39 (10.61)     1:28.08 (22.30)
  8 Louisville                          1:28.88    1:28.16   20  
     1) Albiero, Gabi FR              2) r:0.22 Regenauer, Chriiana SO
     3) r:0.33 Ulett, Tristen FR      4) r:0.23 Kraus, Alena JR       
    r:+0.66  10.74        22.13 (22.13)
          32.40 (10.27)       43.90 (21.77)
          54.47 (10.57)     1:06.04 (22.14)
        1:16.48 (10.44)     1:28.16 (22.12)
  8 Stanford                            1:27.81    1:28.16   20  
     1) Goeders, Anya JR              2) r:0.34 Wheal, Emma SO        
     3) r:0.26 Fackenthal, Amalie JR  4) r:0.31 Green, Lauren SR      
    r:+0.69  10.77        22.37 (22.37)
          32.62 (10.25)       44.00 (21.63)
          54.47 (10.47)     1:06.00 (22.00)
        1:16.47 (10.47)     1:28.16 (22.16)
 10 Texas                               1:27.96    1:28.29   14  
     1) Semenuk, Bridget SO           2) r:0.11 Pash, Kelly SO        
     3) r:0.29 Cook, Julia JR         4) r:0.11 Cooper, Grace FR      
    r:+0.68  10.70        22.36 (22.36)
          32.53 (10.17)       44.16 (21.80)
          54.62 (10.46)     1:06.15 (21.99)
        1:16.41 (10.26)     1:28.29 (22.14)
 11 Georgia                             1:28.61    1:28.42   12  
     1) Parker, Maxine FR             2) r:0.43 Fa'Amausili, Gabi SR  
     3) r:0.43 Hartman, Zoie SO       4) r:0.14 Dellatorre, Danelle SR
    r:+0.75  10.82        22.01 (22.01)
          32.49 (10.48)       43.83 (21.82)
          54.41 (10.58)     1:06.04 (22.21)
        1:16.75 (10.71)     1:28.42 (22.38)
 12 Tennessee                           1:28.00    1:28.70   10  
     1) McSharry, Mona FR             2) r:0.24 Ungaretti, Natalie SO 
     3) r:0.29 Sichterman, Megan SR   4) r:0.33 Grinter, Bailey SR    
    r:+0.64  10.76        22.36 (22.36)
          32.74 (10.38)       44.30 (21.94)
          54.84 (10.54)     1:06.71 (22.41)
        1:17.18 (10.47)     1:28.70 (21.99)
 13 Florida                             1:28.50    1:28.89    8  
     1) Mack, Katie SO                2) r:0.26 Bates, Talia SO       
     3) r:0.16 Hillis, Gabrielle SR   4) r:0.23 Balbuena, Kirsctine JR
    r:+0.69  10.72        22.37 (22.37)
          32.87 (10.50)       44.48 (22.11)
          54.89 (10.41)     1:06.60 (22.12)
        1:17.07 (10.47)     1:28.89 (22.29)
 14 Northwestern                        1:29.11    1:28.90    6  
     1) Ozbilen, Selen FR             2) r:0.14 Larson, Ally SO       
     3) r:0.22 Wallace, Isabella FR   4) r:0.23 Smith, Maddie SR      
    r:+0.66  11.00        22.53 (22.53)
          32.80 (10.27)       44.61 (22.08)
          55.15 (10.54)     1:07.14 (22.53)
        1:17.38 (10.24)     1:28.90 (21.76)
 15 USC                                 1:28.42    1:28.96    4  
     1) Dobler, Kaitlyn FR            2) r:0.24 Ciesla, Marta SR      
     3) r:0.20 Schlicht, Jemma SR     4) r:0.64 Odgers, Isabelle JR   
    r:+0.61  10.63        22.29 (22.29)
          32.61 (10.32)       44.33 (22.04)
          54.49 (10.16)     1:06.16 (21.83)
        1:17.08 (10.92)     1:28.96 (22.80)
 16 Michigan                            1:27.99    1:29.00    2  
     1) Carter, Olivia JR             2) r:0.22 MacNeil, Maggie JR    
     3) r:0.18 Newman, Claire FR      4) r:0.42 Glass, Megan SO       
    r:+0.67  11.05        22.59 (22.59)
          32.81 (10.22)       43.72 (21.13)
          54.47 (10.75)     1:06.37 (22.65)
        1:17.36 (10.99)     1:29.00 (22.63)
 17 Virginia Tech                       1:28.96    1:29.18  
     1) Shackelford, Sarah SO         2) r:0.26 Larson, Abby JR       
     3) r:0.18 Landon, Anna JR        4) r:0.18 Vereb, Joelle SR      
    r:+0.65  10.93        22.54 (22.54)
          33.09 (10.55)       44.91 (22.37)
          55.56 (10.65)     1:07.37 (22.46)
        1:17.49 (10.12)     1:29.18 (21.81)
 18 Indiana                             1:29.12    1:29.51  
     1) Turak, Ashley SO              2) r:0.10 Eiber, Laurel SR      
     3) r:0.23 Kirkpatrick, Abby SR   4) r:0.05 Broshears, Elizbeth FR
    r:+0.66  10.74        22.07 (22.07)
          32.61 (10.54)       44.38 (22.31)
          55.22 (10.84)     1:07.19 (22.81)
        1:17.67 (10.48)     1:29.51 (22.32)
Women - Team Rankings - Through Event 2                      
 
  1. Virginia                           74   
  2. California                         72
  3. Ohio St                            52   
  3. Alabama                            52
  5. Texas                              44   
  6. Stanford                           42
  7. Georgia                            40   
  8. Kentucky                           34
  9. NC State                           32  
 10. Missouri                           30
 11. Florida                            26  
 12. UNC                                24
 12. Louisville                         24  
 14. Michigan                           16
 15. Tennessee                          12  
 15. Indiana                            12
 17. Texas A&M                          10  
 18. Wisconsin                           8
 19. Virginia Tech                       6  
 19. Northwestern                        6
 21. Southern California                 4