Golden Bears Finish Second at Pac-10 Championships

March 8, 2003

LONG BEACH, Calif. - For the second consecutive season, the University of California men's swimming team placed second at the Pac-10 Men's Swimming Championships. The Golden Bears finished the conference meet with 730.5 points, behind championship winner Stanford's 879 points. Arizona State hosted the event at the Belmont Plaza Pool in Long Beach, Calif.

USC finished in third place (619 points), while the Sun Devils placed fourth (439). Arizona (392.5) and Washington (181) completed the field in fifth and sixth places, respectively.

The 1650-yard freestyle led off the evening's events and freshman Ryan Lean placed highest for Cal, finishing seventh with an NCAA consideration qualifying time of 15:24.15. Sophomore John Dorr (15:39.29) finished in 11th place, while fellow sophomore Matt Schmelzer clocked a time of 16:12.32 in an exhibition race.

In the 200 backstroke, junior Alex Lim notched an NCAA automatic qualifying time of 1:43.80 for a fourth place finish. Sophomore Jeff Natalizio finished just behind him in fifth place in a season-best time of 1:44.49, while freshman Chris Gibson placed ninth (1:47.96).

Senior Anthony Ervin won the second 100 free Pac-10 championship title of his career, winning the event with a season-best time of 42.62. Ervin is the three-time defending national champion in the 100 free. Sophomore Duje Draganja, last season's 100 free Pac-10 champion, finished just a hair behind in second place in 42.64. Senior captain Joe Bruckart rounded out Cal's finishes in the championship final, placing fourth with an NCAA 'A' cut time of 43.51. Freshman sprinter, Michael Cavic, won the consolation final (43.75), while freshmen Matt Lyon and Evan Lane tied for 11th place in 45.08.

In the 200 breaststroke, sophomore Caleb Rowe posted a third-place finish (1:58.42), while freshman Rick Barbosa (2:01.14) and sophomore Brooks Jenkins (2:02.65) finished in seventh and eighth place, respectively. Cal had only one swimmer qualify for the finals in the 200 butterfly, as sophomore Keith Vogelgesang finished 13th in a season-best 1:48.85.

Cal's 400 free relay team of Bruckart, Draganja, Cavic and Ervin defended last season's championship title by winning the event in an impressive time of 2:51.43. That time is not only a season-best for the Bears and an NCAA automatic qualifying time, but stands as the fastest in the nation this season.

The Bears now have a short two week break in preparation for the 2003 NCAA Men's Swimming Championships. The championships are hosted by the University of Texas and will take place Mar. 27-29 in Austin, Texas. Visit www.calbears.com for upcoming championships information.

Cal at Pac-10 Championships, Mar. 8, 2003
Team Scores: 1. Stanford (879), 2. Cal (730.5), 3. USC (619), 4. ASU (439), 5. Arizona (392.5), 6. Washington (181).1650-yard Freestyle-7. Ryan Lean, 15:24.15; 11. John Dorr, 15:39.29; ex. Matt Schmelzer, 16:12.32. 200-yard Backstroke-4. Alex Lim, 1:43.80; 5. Jeff Natalizio, 1:44.49; 9. Chris Gibson, 1:47.96. 100-yard Freestyle-1. Anthony Ervin, 42.62; 2. Duje Draganja, 42.64; 4. Joe Bruckart, 43.51; 7. Michael Cavic, 43.75; 11t. Matt Lyon/Evan Lane, 45.08; 13. Jens Thiele, 45.14. 200-yard Breaststroke-3. Caleb Rowe, 1:58.42; 7. Rick Barbosa, 2:01.14; 8. Brooks Jenkins, 2:02.65; 10. Quentin Byma, 1:59.88; 16. Miguel Molina, 2:01.60. 200-yard Butterfly-13. Keith Vogelgesang, 1:48.85. 400-yard Freestyle Relay-1. Cal (Bruckart, Draganja, Cavic, Ervin), 2:51.43.

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