No. 6 Men's Swimming Faces No. 4 Texas and No. 12 Indiana

Nov. 1, 2006

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The No. 6 California Golden Bears will travel to face their first nationally ranked teams of the season this weekend as they head to Austin, Texas, to face Texas and Indiana on Nov. 3-4. This meet is being showcased as the Swimming World's meet of the week. Last weekend the Bears swept most of the races against Cal State Bakersfield and participated in an Alumni meet on Friday, Oct. 27.

No. 4 Texas will open the season against both California and Indians. The Longhorns recently participated in the Big 12 Relays, capturing the title and collecting 13 individual events. Twelve Longhorns were involved in the 13 victories. Leading the way were Thomas Sacco and Daniel Rohleder, who were each a part of six of the winning relay teams.

No. 12 Indiana opened up their season against Kentucky, Northwestern and Arizona State in three different meets. Indiana defeated Kentucky, 175-125, in the season opener. The Hoosiers didn't fair so well in the Big Ten opener against Northewestern falling, 163.5-136.5. Indiana defeated Arizona State, 156-132 last Saturday.

The No. 6 California men's swimming and diving team hosted Cal State Bakersfield in its first home meet of the season In the freestyle races, Cal swept all six events. In the 50 free, junior William Copeland won his second race of the season (Copeland also won the 100 free at Pacific). Copeland finished first with his impressive time of 20.72. Junior Dominic Cathey (50.40), sophomore Ian Lentz (51.35), sophomore Matthew Scanlan (51.47) and junior Justin Pollard (52.45) all fell behind Copeland respectively. Freshman sensation Nathan Adrian won the 100 free, edging Copeland for first with his time of 46.00. Copeland was clocked at 46.05. Junior Eric Dunipace finished fourth (49.54). In the 200 free, junior Dominik Meichtry won the race with his time of 1:40.87. Senior Daniel Lysaught (1:43.51) and junior Michael Jafari (1:48.91) finished second and third, respectively. In a second heat of the 200 free, Adrian won the race with his time of 1:42.74. In the distance freestyle events, Meichtry won the 500 free with his time of 4:32.43. Lysaught (4:36.35) and Jafari (4:45.04) fell in line. Again in the 1000 free, Meichtry (9:28.19), Lysaught (9:32.69) and Jafari (9:44.06) finished one, two and three. Junior Jernej Godec won the 50 fly on Saturday with his time of 22.02. Cathey finished second (23.02) and Ian Lentz finished third (23.40). Godec also won the 100 fly with his time of 48.39. Scanlan won the 200 fly (1:53.20). Cathey finished second (1:54.54) and Godec finished third (1:55.14). In the backstroke, sophomore David Russell continued his success in the 50, beating out freshman Guy Barnea (23.59) to claim individual honors in the race with his time of 23.05. Junior Louis Vayo (24.60) and sophomore Ryan Emanuel (25.50) finished fourth and fifth, respectively. The role was reversed in the 100 back, as Barnea edged Russell (49.50) for the honors after he was clocked at 49.46. Barnea also claimed the top honors in the 200 back with his time of 1:48.50. Vayo finished second (1:49.04) and Russell third (1:49.33). Junior Richard Hunter went undefeated in the breaststroke events on Saturday. Hunter won the 50 (26.32), the 100 (58.28) and 200 (2:08.18). Freshman Troy Nissen finished a close second to Hunter in all three of the events. Senior Patrick O'Neil won the 100 yard IM during the morning's competition with his time of 53.26. Freshman Adrian Casey finished third (56.35). O'Neil also claimed honors in the 200 IM (1:55.57). In the 400 freestyle relay Cal entered four teams. All four teams finished in the top four. The winning team of Adrian, Dunipace, Ian Lentz and Hunter won the competition with their final time of 3:06.87. For the first time this season the divers competed. Junior Javier Rivas won the one meter with his final score of 278.85. Junior Mark Wes finished second (226.49). Rivas also finished third (236.18) in the three meter.

Junior Richard Hunter went undefeated in the breaststroke events on Saturday. Hunter won the 50 (26.32), the 100 (58.28) and 200 (2:08.18). Hunter also was the last leg in the wining 400 freestyle relay. Hunter didn't have much of a lead as freshman Troy Nissen was edging close to him, finishing second in all breastroke events.

The meet against Cal State Bakersfield was the first time the divers competed this season for the Bears. Junior Javier Rivas won the one-meter board with his marks of 278.85. He also finished third at three meters with his final score of 236.18. Rivas' career-best in the one-meter board is 279.53 and in the three-meter board is 329.93.

In all middle-distance and distance races, Dominik Meichtry, Daniel Lysaught and Michael Jafari all finished one, two and three, respectively. Meichtry won all three races with his times of 1:40.87 (200 free), 4:32.43 (500 free) and 9:28.19 (1000 free). Lysaught finished second in all three after being clocked at 1:43.51 in the 200 free, 4:36.35 in the 500 free and 9:32.69 in the 1000 free. Jafari recorded third place in all three events with his times of 1:48.91 (200 free), 4:45.04 (500 free) and 9:44.06 (1000 free).

Against Cal State Bakersfield, the Bears raced four relay teams in the 400 freestyle relay - finishing in the top four positions. The winning team of Nathan Adrian, Eric Dunipace, Ian Lentz and Richard Hunter won the race with their final time of 3:06.87. Just a second off of the top finish the squad of William Copeland, Patrick O'Neil, Justin Pollard and Matthew Scanlan finished second with their time of 3:07.43. The other two teams finished third (3:13.13) and fourth (3:13.21), respectively, and Cal State Bakersfield finished fifth (3:14.35).

Cal returns 10 All-Americans from last season. Those swimmers include junior William Copeland (200-medley relay, 200-free relay, 400-free relay, 100 free), junior Jernej Godec (200-medley relay, 200-free relay, 100 fly, 50 free, 400-medley relay), junior Dominik Meichtry (200 free, 500 free, 800-free relay), senior Daniel Lysaught (500 free, 1650 free), senior Patrick O'Neil (200 fly, 100 fly), sophomore David Russell (400-medley relay), junior Louis Vayo (800-free relay, 200 back), junior Garrett Wagner (400-free relay, 800-free relay, 200 free) and junior Joe Whittington (200-free relay) .

In August, senior Patrick O'Neil was rewarded a spot on the 2007 Pan Am Games swimming team. The games will be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on July 17-22, 2007.

Nort Thornton, who was inducted into the ASCA (American Swimming Coaches Association) Hall of Fame in September of 2002, enters his 32nd season as the director of the California men's swimming team. Thornton led the 2005-06 Golden Bears to a sixth-place finish at the NCAA Championships. A true indication of Thornton's success is the fact that Cal has finished in the Top 10 nationally in 27 of the 32 years he has been at the helm of the Golden Bears program. Thornton, the dean of all Pac-10 swimming coaches, has led the Bears to two national championships - back-to-back titles in 1979 and 1980 - and produced a stellar cast of All-Americans. The veteran coach has an impressive 226-82 career dual-meet record, has been National Coach of the Year twice and has been the Pac-10 Coach of the Year four times, most recently in 1999. Thornton is assisted by co-head coach Mike Bottom. Bottom, now in his 10 season in Berkeley, has established himself as one of the world's top sprint coaches. Under his tutelage, former Bear Duje Draganja became one of the top sprinters in the world. The Croatian took silver in the 50 freestyle at the 2004 Athens Olympics and won five titles at the 2005 NCAA Championships. Bottom has also worked with former Cal All-American Milorad Cavic, who swam on three 2005 championship relays (200 free, 400 free and 200 medley). Cavic also finished second, and Draganja was third, in the 100 fly at the 2004 NCAA Championships. Former Cal sprinter Rolandas Gimbutis was also a part of the winning 2005 relays and, individually, placed fifth in both the 50 and 100 frees at last season's NCAA Championships. This season, Tom Davidson, joins the aquatics program as the diving coach. Prior to Cal he was the diving coach at Illinois State. While at Illinois State Davidson guided Emily Hirt to her first ever NCAA Zone diving championship. Hirt placed in the top 40 regionally with a score of 204.05 on the three-meter board, but did not advance to the final round.

The Bears will compete next at the Stanford Relays on Wednesday, Nov. 8, in Stanford, Calif. The meet is scheduled to start at 3 p.m. (PST) at the Avery Aquatics Center.

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