Stanford Sweeps Sun Devils; Puhakka 1-Meter Record Highlight for ASU

TEMPE, AZ, January 23. THE Arizona State University swimming and diving teams took on Stanford Friday afternoon at the Mona Plummer Aquatic Center where the women fell to the Cardinal 177-117, while the men were defeated 130-103 by the #1 ranked dual meet team in the country.

ASU did report that NCAA gold medal winning diver Joona Puhakka had a standout performance for the men, breaking his own school-record in the 1-meter diving event set in 2003.

The women hit the water first against the Cardinal women, with the 200 medley relay team of Florencia Szigeti, Ágnes Kovács, Caitlin Andrew and Erin Baldinger getting edged out by only 0.01 seconds, taking second-place with a time of 1:43.43.

The opening individual event for the women produced an automatic NCAA qualifying time in the 1650 for Stanford’s Lauren Costella at 16:22.62. She went out in front early and then held on under the standard pace with great support from her teammates and crowd.

Freshman Andrew led the Sun Devils to their first victory of the day in the 100 backstroke where she swam an NCAA consideration time of 55.80.

Senior All-American Kovács took to the water in the 100 breaststroke, swimming an NCAA qualifying time of 1:01.87, just in front of Stanford’s US Olympian breaststroker Caroline Bruce, 1:02.02.

Szigeti was edged out by Stanford’s Lacy Boutwell by .04 in the 100 freestyle, each with NCAA consideration times at :51.08 and 51.12.

It was the third time on the day that Boutwell had come out on the top on a close touch, having anchored the medley relay to a .01 second victory and winning the 50 over teammate Brooke Bishop as well, :23.58 to :23.62.

Kovács continued her stellar day, claiming a second automatic NCAA qualifying time in the 200 breaststroke with a time of 2:12.06, taking second-place behind Bruce’s 2:11.69. Sophomore Christine Creek finished in third-place in that event, swimming a NCAA consideration time of 2:17.72.

Andrew hit the water again in the 100 butterfly event, swimming against U.S. 200 fly Olympian Dana Kirk of Stanford, taking second-place barely getting edged out by Kirk in a NCAA consideration time of 54.52. Kirk doubled in the flys with :54.50 and 2:00.78.

Ending the day for the Sun Devil women in the pool was the 200 freestyle relay team of Szigeti, Andrew, Baldinger and Laura Ullrich. The ASU relay team touched the wall first with a time of 1:34.00.

In the diving pool for the women, sophomore Cassidy Farwell was the lone Sun Devil competing. She took third-place honors in the 3-meter competition with a score of 233.85 and finished fourth overall in the 1-meter with a score of 201.68.

Ashlee Rosenthal was a double winner on the springboards for the Cardinal.

Puhakka started off the afternoon for the Sun Devil men in the diving pool. The reigning NCAA Champion returned to dual meet action for the first time since November taking first-place honors in the 1-meter and 3-meter events.

Puhakka bettered his previous school-record in the 1-meter springboard event with a 403.58 and took the top honor in the 3-meter with a 380.85. Puhakka set a new school-record in the 3-meter event earlier this season. Junior diver Brant Bingham was also in competition for the Sun Devils, finishing in third-place in the 1-meter event with a score of 252.00 and fourth in the 3-meter with a score of 212.18.

In the swimming pool, freshman Lucas Azevedo took to the water in the first individual event of the day in the 1000 freestyle, finishing second in a time of 9:27.26 behind Cardinal freshman Noa Sakamoto’s 9:24.81. Azevedo let Sakamoto get too far in front early, and though he gained significantly on the back half, it wasn’t enough to overcome Noa’s lead.

Stanford went 1-2-3 in the 200 and 50 freestyles, with Jayme Cramer getting the 200 win at 1:37.39 over teammate Andy Grant, 1:37.94. Cramer picked up another nice win in the 200 back at 1:46.89, again edging Grant at 1:47.90.

In the 50 the Cardinal was led by one time Arizona high school star Jed Crowe who won at :20.91. He also had a great swim on the opening relay, anchoring at :19.79.

C.J. Nuess followed up with a strong showing in the 400 IM, claiming second-place in 3:56.41 behind Canadian Cardinal Tobias Oriwol who had a Stanford season best at 3:51.29.

Junior All-American David Kolozar hit the water next in the 200 butterfly swimming a season-best and NCAA consideration time of 1:47.44 to take second-place to a great swim by Stanford’s Hongzhe Michael Sun at :1:45.58. Sun, an Olympic Trials finalist in the 200 back, had a great day swimming off events as he also had the best medley relay 50 back leadoff at :22.25 and threw in a 1:38.38 200 free for good measure

Azevedo grabbed first in the 500 freestyle swimming 4:40.40, but it is worthy of note that two Stanford exhibition swimmers, Michael McLean and Shaun Phillips, touched in a tie at 4:27.31, .10 under the NCAA Consideration time.

Nuess took to the water again in the 200 breaststroke, edging out teammate Leo Martins for first-place with a season-best time of 2:02.74 while Martins took second in 2:02.75. Again the top swim was from an exhibition Cardinal performance with Gary Marshall touching at 2:00.99.

Rounding out competition for the Sun Devil men was the 200 freestyle relay of Richie Crowder, Pat Fleming, Jeff Barrett and Tom Hickman. The relay swam the second-fastest time of the season in 1:24.31.

The ASU swimming and diving teams returned to action Saturday at the Mona Plummer Aquatic Center when they hosted California in their last home dual meet which was also senior appreciation day.

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