Stanford Seniors End Careers Undefeated After Win Over Cal

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Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Stanford senior Ella Eastin broke three pool records as No. 1 Stanford women’s swimming and diving defeated No. 6 Cal, 192-107, at Spieker Aquatics Complex on Saturday afternoon, despite a record-breaking performance from Cal’s Abbey Weitzeil.

Stanford (7-0, 7-0 Pac-12) finished the dual meet season undefeated for the fourth straight year as seniors Kim Williams, Leah Stevens and Eastin finished their careers undefeated.

The last time Stanford lost a dual meet it was to the Missy Franklin-led Cal team in 2015.

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The two-time defending national champions, which have won 30 consecutive dual meets, won six swimming events and swept the podiums in both diving events.

Freshman diver Carolina Sculti won on both boards. She tallied a score of 323.55 on the 1-meter and was followed by junior Haley Farnsworth (312.08) and freshman Daria Lenz (309.75). On the 3-meter, Stanford took the top four spots. Sculti won with another impressive score of 340.80, while Farnsworth was the close runner-up again at 332.18, Lenz earned bronze at 322.95 and Mia Paulsen was fourth at 294.90.

Eastin earned her first pool record of the day with a finish of 1:52.13 in the in the 200-yard butterfly — that topped a 12-year-old mark held by Elaine Breeden.

6 October 2006: Elaine Breeden during Stanford's meet against Oregon State and San Jose State at the Avery Aquatic Center in Stanford, CA.

Elaine Breeden. Photo Courtesy: David Gonzales

She then finished the 200 backstroke in 1:52.01 to top the standard set by Amy Bilquist in 2016, and capped the day with the fastest 200 individual medley in the facility’s history at 1:53.86.

Junior Megan Byrnes led a Stanford sweep in the 1,000 freestyle. Her winning time of 9:45.83 was just ahead of freshman Morgan Tankersley (9:47.19) and Stevens (9:47.71).

Meanwhile, freshman Allie Raab bested the field in the 100 breaststroke with a finish of 1:01.33, while sophomore Lauren Pitzer was first in the 500 free with a season-best time of 4:41.68.

Cal got off to a strong start with wins in three of the first four events, beginning with the 200-yard medley relay. Amy Bilquist, Ema Rajic and Maddie Murphy handled the first three legs, but Stanford held a lead by nearly three-quarters of a second when Abbey Weitzeil hit the water for her anchor leg. With a 21.07 split on her 50 free, she brought the Bears all the way back, touching first in 1:37.36.

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Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Seniors Katie McLaughlin and Bilquist then gave Cal back-to-back victories in the 200 free and 100 back. McLaughlin, teammate Isabel Ivey and Stanford’s Brooke Forde were locked in a title battle throughout the 200 free, and the trio all finished within 0.11 seconds of each other. McLaughlin got her hand in first in 1:45.59 to Forde’s 1:45.62 and Ivey’s 1:45.70.

Bilquist then led from the start in her 100 back. Finishing in 52.16, she established a season best and was only 0.01 off her own Cal dual-meet record from 2017.

Cal closed out the first half of the meet when Weitzeil sprinted to victory in the 50 free. Her time of 21.99 is the second fastest ever by a Golden Bear in a dual meet, topped only by her 21.92 from the Cal-USC dual two weeks ago.

Weitzeil followed up with an even more impressive swim in the 100 free, covering the distance in 48.06. Not only did her time match the Cal dual-meet record first set by Natalie Coughlin in 2003, but it broke the Spieker Aquatics Complex mark of 48.17 by Stanford’s Simone Manuel from two years ago.

Both teams head to the Pac-12 Conference Championships, which run Feb. 27-March 2 in Federal Way, Wash., and the NCAA Championships will be March 20-23 in Austin, Texas.