Coughlin Wins Three Races at Counsilman Classic

June 14, 2005

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Former California swimmer Natalie Coughlin, leading a large contingent of Golden Bears, won the 100-meter freestyle, 200-meter freestyle and 100-meter backstroke at the Counsilman Classic, held June 10-12 at the IUPUI Natatorium.

The Counsilman Classic was the second stop on USA Swimming's Grand Prix Circuit leading up to the FINA World Championships, July 24-31 in Montreal, Canada. It is the only non-California meet of the series, which includes the Santa Clara Invitational, June 24-26 in Santa Clara, and the Janet Evans Invitational, July 14-17 in Los Angeles.

Coughlin, swimming for the Cal Aquatics club, won the 200 free in a time of 2:00.31, the 100 back in 1:01.12 and the 100 free in 54.66. The 200 free included other Bears also swimming for Cal Aquatics: Erin Reilly, who will be a junior next year at Cal, was fourth (2:03.25), graduated senior Lauren Medina won the consolation final to take ninth (2:03.22), Emily Silver, who will be a sophomore next fall, was 14th (2:05.57), and returning senior Ashley Chandler was 23rd (2:09.69).

In the 100 breaststroke, returning junior Annie Babicz was fourth (1:13.86) and returning sophomore Genevieve Patterson was 10th (1:14.73). Both swam for Cal Aquatics. In the 100 butterfly, Babicz took fifth (1:03.32), returning sophomore Rachel Ridgeway (Cal Aquatics) was ninth (1:03.11), and Reilly was 17th (1:03.93). The Cal Aquatics team of returning senior Helen Silver, Patterson, returning junior Sherry Tsai and returning junior Lauren Andrews closed out Friday by winning the 400 free relay (3:55.23).

Ridgeway was fourth in the 200 fly (2:18.85) in the first event on Saturday. The 50 free had three Bears in the finals: Emily Silver was third (26.62), Babicz was fourth (26.63) and Reilly was ninth (26.65). Coughlin swam a meet-record to win the 100 back, which featured three other Bears in the top eight: Tsai was fourth (1:03.92), Helen Silver took fifth (1:04.08) and Andrews was seventh (1:04.98). Patterson scored points with a 19th-place finish (2:46.43) in the 200 breaststroke. Two Bears reached the 400 free finals: Reilly was fifth (4:22.87) and Chandler was ninth (4:15.80). In the final race on Saturday, Cal Aquatics (Helen Silver, Patterson, Ridgeway, Emily Silver) won the 400 medley relay (4:22.30).

Chandler took third (8:48.14) in the 800 free, the first event on Sunday. In the 200 IM, Emily Silver was third (2:20.20), Tsai finished fourth (2:23.78) and Babicz was 10th (2:22.82). Helen Silver won the 200 back (2:16.55), while Andrews was third (2:18.68) and Tsai finished 11th (2:23.81). After a tornado warning delayed the start of the 100 free final about five minutes, Cal products finished 1-2-3-4 and 18-19 in the meet's final event. Coughlin's winning time of 54.66 set a new meet record. Silver (57.10), Medina (57.13) and Reilly (57.13) followed in second and a two-way tie for third, respectively.

Cal Aquatics finished second at the meet, to U.S. Olympian Michael Phelps' Club Wolverine, with 672 points.