Hardy Wins First Solo Gold at World Championships

April 5, 2007

MELBOURNE, Australia - Former California swimmer Jessica Hardy won the 50-meter breaststroke to claim her first individual gold medal at the 12th annual FINA World Championships at the Susie O'Neil Pool on April 1, the final day of the competition. Hardy swam a 30.63 to defeat rival Leisel Jones of Australia, who swam a 30.70.

Hardy won the last two NCAA titles in the 100-yard breaststroke.

A day earlier in Melbourne, former Bears star Natalie Coughlin led off the U.S. 4x100-meter medley relay, which took second place behind the host Australians. The United States swam a 3:58.31 to the Aussies' world-record 3:55.74.

On March 30, Coughlin took home fourth place in the 100 freestyle with a time of 53.87. Australia's Lisbeth Venton won the 100 free in a time of 53.40, which tied Coughlin's championship-record time set in the March 29 semifinal round. Coughlin also placed eighth in the 50 free final with a time of 25.31 on April 1.

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