Stanford Finishes Second Behind UCLA At Pac-10 Championships

March 1, 2003

Federal Way, Wash. - Stanford finished second behind 2003 Pac-10 champions UCLA after the final day of competition at the 2003 Pac-10 Women's Swimming and Diving Championships on Saturday. Tara Kirk nearly broke her second American record in as many days, coming within .001 seconds of equaling her own American mark to win the 200 breast in 2:07.37, staying unbeaten in the event this season. Stanford also had the winning 400 free relay team as Lacey Boutwell, Sarah Jones, Ashley Daly and Megan Baumgartner recorded a new NCAA 'A' qualifying mark and season-best time of 3:19.82.

UCLA finished the three-day event with 1399 points, followed by Stanford (1308), USC (1138), Arizona (1013) and California (940.5) to round out the top five. Arizona State (765), Washington (578.5), Oregon State (544) and Washington State (299) placed sixth through ninth.

'UCLA swam a great meet, and we just couldn't quite get it done this year,' said Stanford head coach Richard Quick about his team that won the title last year and in 14 of the last 16 seasons. 'But we had a couple of great races tonight, especially with Tara Kirk in the 200 breast and our winning 400 free relay team.'

Dana Kirk reached the NCAA 'A' mark in the 200 fly (1:56.02) for the first time this season with a third-place finish.

California's Natalie Coughlin set the only American record of the evening by recording a time of 47.42 to win the 100 fly.

USC had three individual event winners in Kaitlin Sandeno (1650 free, 15:54.41), Michala Kwasny (200 fly, 1:55.75) and Blythe Hartley (platform diving, 489.20). Arizona's Beth Botsford won the 200 back (1:55.24). All the individual event victories met the NCAA 'A' qualifying standard.

Stanford had a pair of fourth-place individual finishes in Kristen Caverly (200 breast, 2:12.96) and Boutwell (100 free, 49.83). Caverly's time was her first NCAA 'A' qualifying mark in the event, while Boutwell's performance was a season-best.

Stanford's other top individual event finishers included McKenze Murphy (platform diving, fourth-place, 435.15), Amy Wagner (200 back, eighth-place, 2:12.81, 2:00.63 prelims) and Evins Cameron (1650 free, 11th-place, 16:53.41).

Stanford has eight swimmers (Baumgartner, Boutwell, Kristen Caverly, Daly, Jones, Dana Kirk, Tara Kirk and Amy Wagner) that have qualified automatically for the NCAA Championships to be hosted by Auburn from March 20-22. The remainder of the NCAA field will be announced next week.

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