No. 9 Trojans Set For Stiff Test With No. 2 California, No. 3 Stanford
Feb. 2, 2006
The No. 9 USC men's swimming and diving team (5-2, 1-1) resumes Pac-10 action when it hosts Northern California rivals California and Stanford this weekend. The Trojans will compete against the No. 2 Golden Bears (5-0, 2-0) on Friday (Feb. 3) and against the No. 3 Cardinal (3-0) on Saturday (Feb. 4). Both meets begins at 1 p.m. at USC's McDonald's Swim Stadium.
CAL AND STANFORD - Cal is features strong distance freestyler Daniel Lysaught, a junior, and senior breaststroker Henrique Barbosa. Lysaught is coming off of two lifetime best performances in his last outing in the 500y and 1000y free. His time of 8:56.68 in the 1000y free is second on Cal's all-time list and the fastest by a Bear since 1989. Barbosa is coming off a pair of outstanding breaststroke swims that put him among the top 10 in the country in both distances ... Stanford has been led by Andy Grant, the school record holder in the 200y free and the owner of an `A' cut in the race. Teammate Hongzhe Sun has `A' standards in both backstrokes, as well.
MEN'S TOP TIMES (From CollegeSwimming.com) - Senior Ous Mellouli's 4:12.18 in the 500y free is a school record, is the fastest time in the country this year and is an NCAA automatic qualifying time. He also holds the top time in the 400y IM in 3:43.66 (NCAA `A' cut) and his 14:50.07 (NCAA `A' cut) is third fastest in the nation. He is also 21st in the 200y IM (1:48.91) ... Sophomore Viktor Bodrogi is third in the country in the 200y fly (1:44.78) and eighth in the 100y back in 47.78 (NCAA `B' cut). His 1:44.96 (NCAA `B' cut) in the 200y back is 11th, his 47.96 (NCAA `B' cut) in the 100y fly is 15th and his 1:48.69 (NCAA `B' cut) in the 200y IM is 17th ... Junior Sam Masson's 46.60 in the 100y fly is a school record, the top time in the country and an NCAA `A' cut. His 1:46.18 (NCAA `B' cut) in the 200y fly is fifth in the country and his 48.71 (NCAA `B' cut) in the 200y back is 20th ... Junior Mihaly Flaskay's 53.73 (NCAA `B' cut) in the 100y breast is fifth fastest in the country, and his 1:58.23 in the 200y breast (NCAA `B' cut) is fourth ... Junior Joon Youm's 1:58.59 (NCAA `B' cut) in the 200y breast is eighth fastest ... Junior Sean Sussex's 20.15 (NCAA `B' cut) is tied for 15th fastest and freshman Vanni Mangoni's 3:53.23 (NCAA `B' cut) in the 400y IM is 18th ... Sophomore Brandon Lovell's 1:47.74 (NCAA `B' cut) in the 200y fly is 18th and junior Mike Kauffman's 1:48.01 (NCAA `B' cut) in the 200y fly is 23rd.
2005-2006 SO FAR - USC opened the 2005-2006 season at the Pacific Invite in Stockton, Calif., where Ous Mellouli won four times for the men's squad ... At the 2005 Trojan Diving Invitational (Nov. 11-12), junior Kenny Jenkins led the men's team with a win on platform ... Also that weekend, USC's men's team hosted No. 6 Texas and was edged, 157-143. Mellouli won three races (500y and 1000y free and 400y IM) while junior Sam Masson (100y and 200y fly) won twice in the loss ... USC opened Pac-10 competition at Arizona and Arizona State on Nov. 18 and 19, falling in Tucson to the Wildcats, but beating the Sun Devils in Tempe the following day. Mellouli won three races at ASU ... On Dec. 1-3, USC competed at the Texas Invitational. Mellouli set a school record in the 500y free (4:12.18) and won the 400y IM in 3:43.66, best in the nation this year. Masson later set a school record in the 100y fly (46.60) ... On Jan. 7, USC hosted UC Santa Barbara and Texas A&M, sweeping both schools. Junior Larsen Jensen made his 2006 debut after recovering from knee surgery and won the 500y and 1000y freestyles in his first showing. Viktor Bodrogi won both back events for the men as well ... Troy hosted and beat Pacific and Cal State Bakersfield on Jan. 14, as senior Tyler Panos posted a season best in the 200y back and Mihaly Flaskay did the same in the 50m free.
MEN'S RETURNING ALL-AMERICANS - The Trojan men are looking to improve upon their ninth-place finish at the 2005 NCAA Championships and are led by six returning All-Americans. Ous Mellouli was a four-time All-American as a 2005 junior, reaching the finals of the 500y and 1650y free in addition to his title in the 400y IM and his spot anchoring the 400y medley relay. Larsen Jensen was a two-time All-American, winning the 1650y free and making the final of the 500y free. Junior Mihaly Flaskay was a three-time All-American, finishing second in the 100y breast (finishing out of first by 0.24) while swimming on USC's championship final 200y and 400y medley relays. Juniors Sam Masson (fly) and Viktor Bodrogi (back) also swam on USC's NCAA medley relays to each earn a pair of All-American honors while junior Sean Sussex earned his All-American nod as the anchor of the 200y medley relay. The only All-American not returning is graduated diver Ray Vincent, who reached the platform final three consecutive seasons.
MELLOULI EARNS BACK-TO-BACK SWIMMER OF THE MONTH HONORS - Senior Ous Mellouli was named Pac-10 men's swimmer of the month in November and December. He earned his December honor after swimming two of the nation's fastest times at the Texas Invitational at the start of the month. The senior from Tunis, Tunisia, won the 500y free in 4:12.18, a national-best time. His performance broke former Trojan and U.S. Olympian Klete Keller's 2002 NCAA-title- winning time of 4:12.83.
USC AT THE 2005 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS - Larsen Jensen won a pair of silver medals at the 2005 World Championships in the 800m (re-setting his own American record) and 1500m free while Ous Mellouli won two bronze medals in the 400m IM and 400m free. Women's diver Blythe Hartley won her second career title on 1-meter.
TROJANS SCHEDULED TO COMPETE AT THE 2006 SHORT COURSE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS - Jensen, freshman Rebecca Soni and former Trojan and current volunteer coach Kaitlin Sandeno have been selected to represent the United States at the 2006 FINA Short Course World Championships (25m), April 5-9, in Shanghai, China. In addition, USC Coach Mark Schubert will serve as an assistant coach on the women's team.
USC IN ANY LANGUAGE - The Trojan swimming and diving teams have featured diverse rosters for years and this season is no different. The men's squad includes swimmers from Tunisia (Mellouli), Hungary (Viktor Bodrogi, Mihaly Flaskay and Gergely Meszaros), Italy (Vanni Mangoni), Guatemala (Evan Marcus) and South Korea (Joon Youm). Blythe Hartley on the women's team is from Canada while Head Diving Coach Hongping Li is Chinese and sophomore Renee Viveros has competed for the Mexican national team