Pac-12 Conference Men’s Champs: Cal Surges to 89-Point Lead Behind Swift Medley Relay

reece-whitley
Photo Courtesy: Connor Trimble

Pac-12 Conference Men’s Champs: Cal Surges to 89-Point Lead Behind Swift Medley Relay

Day Three Finals, Houston Texas

As expected, it took only one event for Cal to leap into the top spot of the team standings on the third night of the Pac-12 Conference Men’s Championships. While the Bears have been dominant in the pool throughout the meet, it took until Day Three for Cal to overcome the diving deficit it faced entering the meet. The Bears now own a 89-point lead over Stanford heading into the last day of competition.

Below is an event-by-event look at what unfolded on Tuesday night.

Team Standings

  1. Univ of California, Berkeley      640   
  2. Stanford University               551
  3. University Of Arizona             466   
  4. Utah, University of               347
  5. Southern California, Universit    304

400 Individual Medley

A 49.71 butterfly leg to open the event enabled Cal’s Hugo Gonzalez to take the lead in the 400 individual medley, and the junior stayed in front to the finish, winning in 3:37.31. Although Gonzalez didn’t match his triumphant time of 3:36.60 from last year, he had plenty of cushion over runnerup David Schlicht of Arizona, who touched the wall in 3:39.59.

In claiming a 30-point advantage in the team standings, Cal also benefited from a third-place showing from Sean Grieshop (3:41.30) and a fifth-place effort by Chris Jhong. In between the Cal swimmers was Stanford’s Alex Liang, who posted a time of 3:42.44. Cal also received a sixth-place finish from Tyler Kopp and came away with 63 points from the championship final.

 Event 10  Men 400 Yard IM
=========================================================================
         NCAA: N 3:33.42  3/24/2017 Chase Kalisz, Georgia
       PAC-12: M 3:35.29  2018      Abrahm DeVine, STAN
 PAC-12 Champ: P 3:36.60  2020      Hugo Gonzalez, CAL
                 3:39.16  A Standard
                 3:51.46  B Standard
    Name           Year School            Prelims     Finals       Points 
=========================================================================
                       === Championship Finals ===                       
 
  1 Gonzalez, Hugo   JR CAL               3:38.87    3:37.31 A       20  
             23.23        49.71 (26.48)
        1:17.96 (28.25)     1:45.34 (27.38)
        2:15.05 (29.71)     2:45.75 (30.70)
        3:12.25 (26.50)     3:37.31 (25.06)
  2 Schlicht, David  SO ARIZ              3:43.64    3:39.59 B       17  
             23.52        50.18 (26.66)
        1:18.44 (28.26)     1:46.23 (27.79)
        2:16.55 (30.32)     2:47.76 (31.21)
        3:13.99 (26.23)     3:39.59 (25.60)
  3 Grieshop, Sean   SR CAL               3:43.77    3:41.30 B       16  
             23.66        50.57 (26.91)
        1:19.28 (28.71)     1:47.13 (27.85)
        2:18.56 (31.43)     2:50.19 (31.63)
        3:16.48 (26.29)     3:41.30 (24.82)
  4 Liang, Alex      JR STAN              3:46.56    3:42.44 B       15  
             23.98        50.87 (26.89)
        1:19.86 (28.99)     1:47.70 (27.84)
        2:19.38 (31.68)     2:51.42 (32.04)
        3:17.23 (25.81)     3:42.44 (25.21)
  5 Jhong, Chris     JR CAL               3:44.88    3:44.46 B       14  
             24.39        51.68 (27.29)
        1:20.02 (28.34)     1:48.21 (28.19)
        2:19.95 (31.74)     2:51.97 (32.02)
        3:18.09 (26.12)     3:44.46 (26.37)
  6 Kopp, Tyler      FR CAL               3:47.25    3:45.67 B       13  
             24.33        51.21 (26.88)
        1:19.44 (28.23)     1:47.12 (27.68)
        2:20.21 (33.09)     2:53.00 (32.79)
        3:20.16 (27.16)     3:45.67 (25.51)
  7 Mihm, Rick       FR STAN              3:46.82    3:45.76 B       12  
             24.21        51.16 (26.95)
        1:19.47 (28.31)     1:47.59 (28.12)
        2:19.35 (31.76)     2:51.77 (32.42)
        3:19.01 (27.24)     3:45.76 (26.75)
  8 Hand, Jake       FR ARIZ              3:48.37    3:50.22 B       11  
             24.70        52.46 (27.76)
        1:22.62 (30.16)     1:52.51 (29.89)
        2:23.86 (31.35)     2:55.65 (31.79)
        3:23.26 (27.61)     3:50.22 (26.96)

100 Butterfly

Make it eight victories in as many events for Cal, as Ryan Hoffer topped the field in the 100 butterfly. Coming off a win in the 50 freestyle on Monday night, Hoffer went 45.22 in the fly to defend his title and fend off Southern Cal’s Nikola Miljenic, who was timed in 45.33. Hoffer used his natural speed to take the lead at the midway point in 20.78 and was able to withstand Miljenic’s late charge.

Arizona’s Noah Reid  was third in 45.67 and Stanford’s Ethan Hu also cracked the 46-second barrier with a time of 45.78. Hu was followed by teammate Jonny Affeld (46.17).

 Event 11  Men 100 Yard Butterfly
=========================================================================
         NCAA: N 42.80  3/23/2018 Caeleb Dressel, Florida
       PAC-12: M 44.18  2009      Austin Staab, STAN
 PAC-12 Champ: P 44.66  2011      Austin Staab, STAN
                 45.05  A Standard
                 47.43  B Standard
    Name           Year School            Prelims     Finals       Points 
=========================================================================
                       === Championship Finals ===                       
 
  1 Hoffer, Ryan     SR CAL                 45.69      45.22 B       20  
              9.35        20.78 (11.43)
          32.54 (11.76)       45.22 (12.68)
  2 Miljenic, Nikol  SR USC                 45.59      45.33 B       17  
              9.47        21.03 (11.56)
          33.03 (12.00)       45.33 (12.30)
  3 Reid, Noah       SR ARIZ                45.90      45.67 B       16  
              9.92        21.43 (11.51)
          33.56 (12.13)       45.67 (12.11)
  4 Hu, Ethan        FR STAN                45.75      45.78 B       15  
              9.85        21.44 (11.59)
          33.37 (11.93)       45.78 (12.41)
  5 Affeld, Jonny    FR STAN                46.21      46.17 B       14  
              9.87        21.74 (11.87)
          33.77 (12.03)       46.17 (12.40)
  6 Hatch, Jarod     SR CAL                 46.58      46.70 B       13  
             10.11        21.86 (11.75)
          34.10 (12.24)       46.70 (12.60)
  7 Waterman, Ben    JR UTAH                46.60      47.02 B       12  
              9.99        21.83 (11.84)
          34.17 (12.34)       47.02 (12.85)
  8 Taner, Brooks    SO ARIZ                47.20      47.10 B       11  
             10.01        21.80 (11.79)
          34.14 (12.34)       47.10 (12.96)

200 Freestyle

The monopoly Cal had on the Pac-12 Conference Championships came to an end in the 200 freestyle as Southern California’s Alexei Sancov held off the Bears’ Trenton Julian in a down-to-the-wire duel, 1:32.20 to 1:32.29. Midway through the race, Sancov trailed Julian, 45.07 to 45.16, but a 23.53 split on the third 50 gave the Trojan the lead, and that split proved to be the difference for victory and a personal-best time.

Sancov was 1:32.69 in leading off USC’s 800 freestyle relay on the opening night of the meet, which was good for a personal best. Two days later, he took that personal record even lower at the most-opportune time. In Julian, Sancov was dealing with a swimmer who split 1:31 in the 800 freestyle relay and was coming off a victory in the 500 free.

Stanford freshmen Preston Forst (1:33.23) and Luke Maurer (1:33.38) placed third and fourth while Arizona’s Daniel Namir (1:33.47) and Cal’s Destin Lasco (1:33.73) also broke the 1:34 barrier.

 Event 12  Men 200 Yard Freestyle
=========================================================================
         NCAA: N 1:29.15  3/27/2019 Dean Farris, Harvard
       PAC-12: M 1:30.14  2019      Andrew Seliskar, CAL
 PAC-12 Champ: P 1:31.07  2019      Andrew Seliskar, CAL
                 1:32.05  A Standard
                 1:36.32  B Standard
    Name           Year School            Prelims     Finals       Points 
=========================================================================
                       === Championship Finals ===                       
 
  1 Sancov, Alexei   JR USC               1:32.97    1:32.20 B       20  
             21.63        45.16 (23.53)
        1:08.69 (23.53)     1:32.20 (23.51)
  2 Julian, Trenton  SR CAL               1:32.98    1:32.29 B       17  
             21.72        45.07 (23.35)
        1:08.88 (23.81)     1:32.29 (23.41)
  3 Forst, Preston   FR STAN              1:33.23    1:33.23 B       16  
             22.02        45.30 (23.28)
        1:09.04 (23.74)     1:33.23 (24.19)
  4 Maurer, Luke     FR STAN              1:34.28    1:33.38 B       15  
             21.67        45.15 (23.48)
        1:09.44 (24.29)     1:33.38 (23.94)
  5 Namir, Daniel    JR ARIZ              1:34.18    1:33.47 B       14  
             21.63        45.17 (23.54)
        1:09.26 (24.09)     1:33.47 (24.21)
  6 Lasco, Destin    FR CAL               1:34.01    1:33.73 B       13  
             22.17        45.86 (23.69)
        1:09.89 (24.03)     1:33.73 (23.84)
  7 Yeadon, Zach     SR CAL               1:34.46    1:34.53 B       12  
             22.22        46.27 (24.05)
        1:10.60 (24.33)     1:34.53 (23.93)
  8 Shoults, Grant   SR STAN              1:34.26    1:35.09 B       11  
             22.00        45.97 (23.97)
        1:10.51 (24.54)     1:35.09 (24.58)

100 Breaststroke

Cal spent just one event off the top of the podium as Reece Whitley asserted his dominance in the 100 breaststroke by claiming a comfortable win over Arizona’s Sam Iida. Whitley led from start to finish and stopped the clock in 51.38 to beat Iida (51.97), who was the only other swimmer to break 52 seconds. Whitley’s first-place finish handed Cal its ninth win in 10 events.

Stanford’s Daniel Roy went 52.06 for third place while Cal added a fourth-place effort from Forrest Frazier, who was timed in 52.64. Through the 100 breast, Cal owned a 43-point edge on Stanford in the team race.

 

 Event 13  Men 100 Yard Breaststroke
=========================================================================
         NCAA: N 49.69  3/23/2018 Ian Finnerty, Indiana
       PAC-12: M 50.04  2014      Kevin Cordes, ARIZ
 PAC-12 Champ: P 50.78  2019      Carsten Vissering, USC
                 51.67  A Standard
                 54.27  B Standard
    Name           Year School            Prelims     Finals       Points 
=========================================================================
                       === Championship Finals ===                       
 
  1 Whitley, Reece   JR CAL                 51.87      51.38 A       20  
             10.92        24.22 (13.30)
          37.67 (13.45)       51.38 (13.71)
  2 Iida, Sam        SR ARIZ                53.02      51.97 B       17  
             11.30        24.54 (13.24)
          38.08 (13.54)       51.97 (13.89)
  3 Roy, Daniel      SO STAN                52.39      52.06 B       16  
             11.41        24.61 (13.20)
          37.97 (13.36)       52.06 (14.09)
  4 Frazier, Forres  FR CAL                 52.46      52.64 B       15  
             11.30        24.73 (13.43)
          38.60 (13.87)       52.64 (14.04)
  5 Britton, Andrew  JR UTAH                53.29      52.77 B       14  
             11.20        24.60 (13.40)
          38.33 (13.73)       52.77 (14.44)
  6 Wells, Ty        JR ARIZ                53.72      53.46 B       13  
             11.44        25.17 (13.73)
          39.20 (14.03)       53.46 (14.26)
  7 Cook, Jonathan   SO STAN                53.72      53.47 B       12  
             11.46        25.16 (13.70)
          39.15 (13.99)       53.47 (14.32)
  8 Koenigsperger,   SR USC                 53.33      53.54 B       11  
             11.54        25.27 (13.73)
          39.31 (14.04)       53.54 (14.23)

100 Backstroke

As overpowering as Cal had been during the Pac-12 Championships, the Bears put together their best effort in the 100 backstroke as freshman standout Destin Lasco, one of several standout newcomers on the college scene, led a top-three sweep. Lasco, who earlier in the session was sixth in the 200 free, won the 100 back in 45.30, just .05 ahead Daniel Carr and .08 quicker than Bryce Mefford.

Lasco trailed his senior teammates at the midway point of the race and was still behind with 25 yards left, but he had the most closing speed and passed his fellow Bears at the finish. Thanks to the strong showing, Cal expanded its lead in the team standings to 77 points over Stanford.

 Event 14  Men 100 Yard Backstroke
=========================================================================
         NCAA: N 43.49  3/25/2016 Ryan Murphy, CAL
       PAC-12: M 43.49  2016      Ryan Murphy, CAL
 PAC-12 Champ: P 44.14  2020      Zachary Poti, ASU
                 44.95  A Standard
                 47.77  B Standard
    Name           Year School            Prelims     Finals       Points 
=========================================================================
                       === Championship Finals ===                       
 
  1 Lasco, Destin    FR CAL                 45.74      45.30 B       20  
             11.00        22.50 (11.50)
          34.00 (11.50)       45.30 (11.30)
  2 Carr, Daniel     SR CAL                 45.48      45.35 B       17  
             10.66        21.91 (11.25)
          33.61 (11.70)       45.35 (11.74)
  3 Mefford, Bryce   SR CAL                 46.32      45.38 B       16  
             10.87        22.06 (11.19)
          33.59 (11.53)       45.38 (11.79)
  4 Maric, Ogi       SO ARIZ                46.71      46.12 B       15  
             10.80        22.36 (11.56)
          34.24 (11.88)       46.12 (11.88)
  5 Ungur, Andrei    JR UTAH                46.37      46.64 B       14  
             11.02        22.75 (11.73)
          34.58 (11.83)       46.64 (12.06)
  6 Blinkman, Shane  FR STAN                46.64      46.79 B       13  
             10.91        22.54 (11.63)
          34.66 (12.12)       46.79 (12.13)
  7 Somerset, Sebas  SO CAL                 47.31      47.20 B       12  
             11.23        23.03 (11.80)
          35.19 (12.16)       47.20 (12.01)
  8 Kirby, Jack      SO USC                 47.16      47.56 B       11  
             10.98        22.78 (11.80)
          35.08 (12.30)       47.56 (12.48)

200 Medley Relay

Claiming its fifth victory of the evening, Cal won its fourth relay of the meet with a 1:22.74 performance that came courtesy of the quartet of Daniel Carr, Reece Whitley, Ryan Hoffer and Bjorn Seeliger. Carr led off in 21.11 and was followed by a Whitley split of 23.38. Hoffer checked in with a leg of 19.87, allowing Seeliger to complete the win in 18.38.

Utah finished second in 1:24.23, with Cooper Deryk’s butterfly split of 19.85 the highlight for the Utes. Arizona was third in 1:24.64.

 Event 15  Men 200 Yard Medley Relay
==================================================================================
         NCAA: N 1:21.54  3/24/2017 Texas
                          J. Shebat, W. Licon, J. Schooling, J. Conger
       PAC-12: M 1:21.82  2018      University of So California
                          Glinta, Vissering, Carter, Condorelli
 PAC-12 Champ: P 1:22.16  2020      Univ of California, Berkeley
                          D Carr, R Whitley, P Sendyk, R Hoffer
                 1:24.30  A Standard
                 1:24.97  B Standard
    School                           Seed     Finals       Points 
==================================================================================
  1 CAL  'A'                      1:22.16    1:22.74 A       40  
     1) Carr, Daniel SR               2) r:0.31 Whitley, Reece JR     
     3) r:0.29 Hoffer, Ryan SR        4) r:0.19 Seeliger, Bjorn FR    
             21.11        44.49 (23.38)
        1:04.36 (19.87)     1:22.74 (18.38)
  2 UTAH  'A'                     1:25.76    1:24.23 A       34  
     1) Ungur, Andrei JR              2) r:0.19 Britton, Andrew JR    
     3) r:0.25 Deryk, Cooper JR       4) r:0.12 O'Haimhirgin, Finn SO 
             21.89        45.17 (23.28)
        1:05.02 (19.85)     1:24.23 (19.21)
  3 ARIZ  'A'                     1:25.47    1:24.64 B       32  
     1) Maric, Ogi SO                 2) Iida, Sam SR                 
     3) r:+0.24 Reid, Noah SR         4) r:0.35 Ercegovic, Marin JR   
             21.72        45.24 (23.52)
        1:05.69 (20.45)     1:24.64 (18.95)
  4 USC  'A'                      1:26.55    1:25.62         30  
     1) Kirby, Jack SO                2) r:+0.0 Koenigsperger, ario SR
     3) r:0.20 Sancov, Alexei JR      4) r:0.30 Miljenic, Nikola SR   
             22.25        46.05 (23.80)
        1:06.33 (20.28)     1:25.62 (19.29)
  5 STAN  'A'                     1:25.32    1:25.88         28  
     1) Affeld, Jonny FR              2) r:0.28 Roy, Daniel SO        
     3) r:0.34 Hu, Ethan FR           4) r:0.22 Gonzalez, Mason SO    
             22.10        46.07 (23.97)
        1:06.66 (20.59)     1:25.88 (19.22)
 -- ARIZ  'B'                     1:29.16   x1:25.71        
     1) Anderson, Jack SR             2) r:0.10 Foote, Ryan SO        
     3) r:0.19 Taner, Brooks SO       4) r:0.30 Combs, Tai JR         
             22.25        45.62 (23.37)
        1:06.56 (20.94)     1:25.71 (19.15)
 -- ARIZ  'C'                     1:30.97   x1:28.17        
     1) Stump, Isaac SR               2) r:0.13 Wells, Ty JR          
     3) r:0.11 Johnston, Aldan JR     4) r:0.20 Gwiazdowski, Swum JR  
             22.62        46.93 (24.31)
        1:08.43 (21.50)     1:28.17 (19.74)
 -- STAN  'B'                     1:27.50   x1:30.24        
     1) Blinkman, Shane FR            2) r:0.22 Dang, Ethan FR        
     3) r:0.24 Tarvestad, William FR  4) Roy, Neel FR                 
             21.96        46.43 (24.47)
        1:08.36 (21.93)     1:30.24 (21.88)