No. 2 Stanford Ready for the 2009 Pac-10 Championships
Feb. 25, 2009
No. 2 Stanford Set For The 2009 Pac-10 Conference Championships
Pac-10 Championships Feb. 25-28, 2009 Weyerhauser King County Aquatic Center Federal Way, WA
No. 2 Stanford Travels to Washington for the 2009 Pac-10 Championships
Coming off an undefeated dual meet regular season, the second-ranked Stanford women's swimming and diving team is set to compete at the 2009 Pacific-10 Conference Championships. Hosted by the University of Washington, the meet will be held over a four-day span from Wed., Feb. 25 through Sat., Feb. 28 at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way, Wash.
Stanford will be competing against teams from Arizona, Arizona State, California, Oregon State, UCLA, USC, Washington and Washington State.
Watch the 2009 Pac-10 Championships LIVE!
Fans can watch the 2009 Pac-10 Championships live via the conference's webcast. To access the video go to www.pac-10.org. The streaming can be found on the right side of the page under Pac-10 All Access.
Live event results of the 2009 Pac-10 Championships will be available courtesy of the University of Washington at http://results.teamunify.com/pnws2/
Stanford's Pac-10 Championships History
Stanford has won 16 of the 22 Pac-10 titles since the conference instituted a championships meet in 1987. The Cardinal is one of three teams to win the event, as UCLA has captured two championships and Arizona has won four. However, Stanford has not won a Pac-10 crown since 2005. S
tanford enjoyed an unprecedented run of domination early in the event's history, winning the first 13 consecutive Pac-10 championships (1987-99). After a two year hiatus, the Cardinal won again in 2002, and captured consecutive titles in 2004 and 2005.
Cardinal swimmers have combined to win 169 individual Pac-10 championships, while Stanford relays have won 64 conference titles. Stanford has also had eight athletes be named Pac-10 Swimmer of the Year a total of nine times, and five divers earn conference Diver of the Year accolades.
A Look Back at the 2008 Pac-10 Championships
Showing the mettle that defined the 2007-08 Stanford Cardinal, last year's team narrowed a large final-day deficit before finally finishing a close second to Arizona. Trailing by 63 points after the first three days, Stanford scored 508 points on the final day and finished with 1,472 for the event - a mere 29 points behind the Wildcats.
A quartet of Cardinal swimmers and divers won individual titles at the 2008 Pac-10 Championships. Elaine Breeden took home her second consecutive crown in the 200 yard butterfly, while Kate Dwelley served notice by winning the 200 yard freestyle as a freshman. Meg Hostage was the Pac-10 champ on the 3-meter as a freshman, while Sarah Ohr won her first title in the 1-meter.
Cardinal Pac-10 Champions
Current Stanford swimmers have combined to win 16 Pac-10 titles (individual and relay), led by the seven championships won by senior Caroline Bruce (200 breast in 2005 and `07; 200 medley relay in 2005 and `07; and the 200 IM, 400 IM and 400 medley relay in 2005).
Along with Elaine Breeden (200 fly in 2007 and `08; 200 medley relay in 2007), fellow junior Julia Smit has also won three Pac-10 championships. Smit was a triple-winner at the 2007 meet, taking home conference titles int he 200 back, 200 IM and 400 IM. Sophomores Kate Dwelley (200 freestyle) and Meg Hostage (3-meter diving), along with senior Sarah Ohr (1-meter) all won their first career Pac-10 championships in 2008.
Breeden Looking to Three-Peat in the 200 Butterfly
Junior Elaine Breeden has won the last two Pac-10 titles in the 200 fly (2007 and `08), while she was also the 2007 NCAA champion in the event.
At the 2008 Pac-10 Championships, Breeden established a Stanford record for the 200 fly with a winning time of 1:52.27. Also last year, she was the top United States finisher in the 200-meter fly at the 2008 Olympics by placing seventh in Beijing.
Breeden is one of four Stanford swimmers to win consecutive Pac-10 crowns in the 200 fly, joining fellow U.S. Olympians Summer Sanders (1991 and `92), Misty Hyman (1998 and `99) and Dana Kirk (2005 and `06).
Stanford head women's swimming coach Lea Maurer is in her fourth year at the helm of her alma mater, having presided over a Cardinal squad that has improved one spot at the NCAA Championships in each of her first three campaigns (fifth in 2006, fourth in 2007 and third in 2008). Under her guidance, 17 Cardinal swimmers have combined for 73 All-America honors, while Stanford has won 12 individual Pac-10 championships and a pair of NCAA individual crowns.
In her three years on the Cardinal pool deck, Maurer has guided her teams to a 49-3 (.942) dual meet record.
All-Americans and Accolades Aplenty
The 2008-09 Stanford women's swimming and diving roster boasts a collective 52 All-America selections, four NCAA championships and 16 Pac-10 titles.
Back for More
The starting blocks and diving boards of Stanford's Avery Aquatic Center was loaded with experience this season, as the Cardinal returned nine of its 12 swimmers that competed in the 2008 NCAA Championships and two of the three divers.
In the pool, the Cardinal welcomed back the following group that led Stanford to a third-place finish in March: junior Elaine Breeden, senior Caroline Bruce, sophomore Kate Dwelley, sophomore Kerry Kraemer, junior Julia Smit, sophomore Liz Smith, junior Whitney Spence and senior Laura Wadden.
Stanford Remains at No. 2 in the Latest CSCAA Poll
Stanford kept its stranglehold on the No. 2 spot in the College Swimming Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) dual meet rankings, released on Feb. 12. The Cardinal, which has been ranked second in the last five polls, compiled 290 points - just 10 shy of top-ranked Georgia (300) and 10 more than No. 3 Texas (280). Stanford had been third in each of the first two polls of the campaign (Oct. 16 and Oct. 30).
The final poll, which will crown the dual meet champion, will be released on Feb. 26 - the second day of the Pac-10 Championships.
Stanford a Perfect 20-0 During the 2008-09 Dual Meet Season
Stanford enters the 2009 Pac-10 Championships after finishing the dual meet season undefeated for the second time in the last three years and the 15th time in program history. The Cardinal's 20-0 record featured nine wins in head-to-head competition over a two-day span at the Anteater Shootout (Nov. 7-8), victories over Michigan and Florida in an Oct. 17 tri-meet and nine wins in the traditional dual meet format.
Stanford previously went undefeated in 2006-07 (10-0), 2001-02 (8-0), 1997-98 (7-0), 1996-97 (10-0), 1994-95 (8-0), 1993-94 (6-0), 1992-93 (8-0), 1991-92 (5-0), 1990-91 (10-0), 1989-90 (8-0), 1988-89 (6-0), 1986-86 (7-0), 1983-84 (10-0) and 1976-77 (6-0).
Of the previous 14 Stanford teams to finish the dual meet season without a loss, five won NCAA titles and 10 captured Pac-10 championships.
19 Straight in the Pac-10
Stanford has won its last 19 consecutive Pac-10 dual meets, a streak which dates back to the opening of the 2006-07 season. The Cardinal went 6-0 in dual meets with conference foes in both 2006-07 and 2007-08, and finished 7-0 during the 2008-09 campaign. Stanford has not lost a Pac-10 dual meet since dropping a 169-131 decision to California in the 2005-06 regular season finale.
Dual Meet Success
With a 20-0 record during the 2008-09 campaign, Stanford has defeated 40 of its last 41 opponents in head-to-head competition, with the only setback in that time a tightly-contested 156-144 loss on Nov. 9, 2007 at Georgia.
Getting it Done Against Ranked Teams
Stanford finished a perfect 6-0 against ranked teams during the dual meet season, including a 162-129 victory at No. 11 California in its last meet on Feb. 14. The Cardinal also swept No. 20 UCLA (165.5-125.5) and No. 12 USC (163-137) the weekend of Jan. 30 and 31, while posting a thrilling 150.5-147.5 victory at No. 7 Arizona on Jan. 24. During an Oct. 17 tri-meet in Ann Arbor, Mich., Stanford defeated both No. 4 Florida (178-122) and No. 14 Michigan (218-82).
Since head coach Lea Maurer took the reigns prior to the 2005-06 season, Stanford is an impressive 22-3 (.880) against ranked teams, including a 16-2 mark (.889) against ranked Pac-10 opponents. Taken a step further, the Cardinal has gone 9-3 (.750) vs. top-10 squads - a figure that includes a 6-2 ledger (.750) against conference foes.
See You in the Lone Star State...
In a season that features much tougher qualifying standards, Stanford enters the 2009 Pac-10 Championships with six swimmers having already combined for 10 automatic 'A' times (including one relay), thereby assuring their participation in the 2009 NCAA Women's Swimming and Diving Championships.
The following Cardinal swimmers have punched their tickets to College Station, Texas: junior Elaine Breeden (100 fly, 200 fly and 400 free relay), sophomore Kate Dwelley (400 free relay), junior Julia Smit (200 free, 200 back, 200 IM, 400 IM and 400 free relay), sophomore Liz Smith (200 breast and 400 IM), freshman Betsy Webb (100 back) and freshman Sam Woodward (400 free relay).
13 Stanford swimmers have also logged 37 NCAA 'B'standards (including three relays): Breeden (100 free, 200 IM, 200 medley relay and 400 medley relay), senior Caroline Bruce (100 breast and 200 breast), freshman Jamie Bruce (200 breast and 400 IM), freshman Angela Duckworth (400 IM), Dwelley (100 free, 200 free, 500 free, 200 fly and 800 free relay), junior Kelley Hug (100 back and 100 fly), freshman Jessica Rodriquez (200 free, 500 free, 1,650 free, 400 IM and 800 free relay), Smit (50 free, 100 free, 500 free, 100 back, 200 breast, 800 free relay and 400 medley relay), Smith (100 breast, 200 IM, 200 medley relay and 400 medley relay), junior Whitney Spence (200 free, 500 free and 800 free relay), senior Laura Wadden (100 back, 200 back, 200 fly and 400 medley relay) Webb (100 free and 200 medley relay) and Woodward (50 free, 100 free, 100 fly, 200 fly and 200 medley relay).
...And in Oklahoma!
Cardinal divers have also had a strong year in qualifying for the Zone 'E' Diving Championships. The Zone 'E' meet, which determines which divers will compete at the NCAA Championships, is held from March 12-14 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
All four Stanford divers have already posted 'A' Zone qualifying scores in at least one event: freshman Mary Beth Corbett has logged a 281.10 on the 3-meter; sophomore Meg Hostage has posted a 293.10 on the 1-meter and a 319.20 on the 3-meter; senior Sarah Ohr has recorded a 270.075 on the 1-meter and a 286.575 on the 3-meter; and junior Carmen Stellar has scores of 295.20 on the 1-meter and 308.93 on the 3-meter.
Corbett owns a 'B' qualifying score on the 1-meter (255.60), while Stellar has also recorded a 'B' qualifying score of 243.05 on the platform.
Leading the Way
Stanford has been among the fastest teams in NCAA Division I women's swimming during the 2008-09 season. Cardinal swimmers have posted DI's fastest times in three individual events, while occupying a total of 21 places in the top-20 across 12 individual events.
Julia Smit has the country's best time in the 1,000 free (9:37.35), 200 IM (1:53.33) and 400 IM (3:58.21), while ranking fifth in the 200 free (1:43.56), 10th in the 200 back (1:52.88) and tied for 12th in the 100 free (48.48).
Elaine Breeden swam the second-fastest 200 fly in DI this year (1:52.75) and the seventh-best 100 fly (51.86). She also ranks 13th in the 200 IM with a time of 1:57.57.
Liz Smith ranks fourth nationally in the 400 IM (4:06.05), while she is also tied for seventh in the 200 breast (2:09.84) and tied for 18th in the 200 IM (1:58.02). Fellow sophomore Kate Dwelley is in the top-20 nationally in a trio of freestyle distances, ranking 11th in the 200 (1:44.71), 13th in the 500 (4:40.13) and 19th in the 100 (48.67).
Laura Wadden has enjoyed an outstanding senior campaign thus far, as her efforts rank her 19th in the 200 back (1:54.62) and 20th in the 200 fly (1:56.42).
Stanford's outstanding freshman class has a trio of swimmers ranked among the nation's top-20. Angela Duckworth is tied for 19th in the 1,000 free (9:50.45), Betsy Webb ranks 15th with her time of 52.88 in the 100 back, and Sam Woodward is tied for 14th in the 100 fly (52.48) and tied for 19th in the 50 free (22.39).
A pair of Cardinal relay teams have worked their way into the country's top-10. Dwelley, Woodward, Breeden and Smit swam a 3:13.06 in the 400 free relay to rank fourth; in addition, the 7:02.92 posted by Jessica Rodriquez, Dwelley, Whitney Spence and Smit in the 800 free relay is good for eighth among all NCAA Division I schools.
Smit Sets World Record and American Record During Sensational November
Stanford junior Julia Smit was simply amazing over her two November meets, as she recorded five NCAA 'A' standard times, set a world record in the 400-meter individual medley and an American record in the 200-meter IM.
Competing at the 2008 Canada Cup on Nov. 28, Smit established the world record for short-course meters in the 400 IM with a time of 4:25.87, which was .65-second better than the previous mark of 4:26.52 set by two-time Olympic gold medalist Kirsty Coventry of Zimbabwe. However, her record was broken on December 14 by Spain's Mireia Belmonte Garcia, who swam a 4:25.06 at the European Short Course Championships held in Rijeka, Croatia.
Despite having her world record broken, Smit still owns the American record in both the 400 IM and the 200 IM. She broke a 15-year old U.S. record in the 200 IM on Nov. 29, finishing with a time of 2:06.49.
In a league full of high-quality swimmers, Smit was named the Pac-10 Swimmer of the Month for November. The monthly award was the second of Smit's career (also in November 2006) and the fifth all-time for Stanford. She also captured a pair of Counsilman Hunsaker National Collegiate Swimmer of the Week honors, earning the accolades for the weeks of November 2-9 and November 24-December 7.
Smit Rewriting the Stanford Record Book
Entering the postseason of her third collegiate campaign, 2008 U.S. Olympian Julia Smit has established herself among the all-time great swimmers in Stanford history. Smit owns Stanford records for the 200 freestyle (1:43.56 - adjusted SCM), 200 backstroke (1:52.88 - adjusted SCM), 200 IM (1:53.33 - adjusted SCM) and 400 IM (3:58.21 - adjusted SCM).
The junior sensation also ranks among Stanford's all-time best perfomers in the 50 free (t-4th - 22.39), 100 free (5th - 48.48), 500 free (4th - 4:40.13), 100 back (8th - 53.54) and 200 breaststroke (8th - 2:12.21).
Best of the Best
The Stanford program has one of the most storied traditions in all of collegiate women's swimming. The 2008-09 Cardinal is fashioning its own legacy, as 12 swimmers (including Smit) can be found throughout the Stanford record book.
Three seniors have logged times that are among Stanford's all-time top-10: Andrea Axtell (200 back - 9th, 1:56.80), Caroline Bruce (100 breast - 2nd, 59.55; 200 breast - 2nd, 2:08.67; 200 IM - 8th, 1:57.56; 400 IM - 6th, 4:10.31) and Laura Wadden (100 back - 6th, 53.48; 200 back - 4th; 200 fly - 7th, 1:56.42).
Junior Elaine Breeden finds herself among the Cardinal's top performers in the 100 fly (2nd - 51.44), 200 fly (1st - 1:52.27) and 200 IM (4th - 1:56.30). She is joined in the Stanford record books by fellow junior Kelley Hug, who is ninth in the 100 fly (52.92).
Stanford's super sophomores include Kate Dwelley (50 free - 9th, 22.54; 100 free - t-2nd, 48.38; 200 free - 1:44.71; 500 free - 4th, 4:40.13; 200 fly - 8th, 1:56.87; 200 IM - 5th, 1:57.27), Liz Smith (100 breast - 3rd, 1:00.29; 200 breast - 3rd, 2:08.73; 200 IM - 6th, 1:57.45; 400 IM - 3rd, 4:06.05) and Kerry Kraemer (100 breast - 5th, 1:01.32; 200 breast -10th, 2:12.50).
The Cardinal's freshman class was among the most heralded in the country, and has already shown why in 2008-09. The following three freshmen are already in the Stanford record books: Jessica Rodriquez (400 IM - 10th, 4:14.41), Betsy Webb (100 back - 3rd, 52.88) and Sam Woodward (50 free - t-4th, 22.39; 100 free - 8th, 48.84; 100 fly - 6th, 52.48; 200 fly - 10th, 1:57.94).
Stellar Named Pac-10 Diver of the Month for January
Junior Carmen Stellar was named the Pac-10 Women's Diver of the Month for January after winning five diving competitions over four Pac-10 dual meets. She recorded six 'A' qualifying scores for the upcoming NCAA Zone E Diving Championships in March, while she won both diving events in a pair of dual meets - Jan. 23 at Arizona State and Jan. 30 vs. No. 20 UCLA.
Perhaps the highlight of Stellar's month, however, came in Stanford's thrilling 150.5-147.5 victory at seventh-ranked and defending national champion Arizona. She won the 1-meter competition in Tucson with a score of 292.50 - 30.67 points more than the second-place finisher - and was third on the 3-meter, tallying 12 individual points that helped make the difference in Stanford's narrow victory.
Diving Dominates Duals
Behind the duo of junior Carmen Stellar and sophomore Meg Hostage, Stanford has won 11 of the 12 dual meet diving competitions since the 2009 spring season began - including nine of 10 against Pac-10 opponents.
The run began in Arizona, when Stellar swept both the 1-meter and 3-meter competitions on Jan. 23 at Arizona State. The very next day, Stellar won the 1-meter while Hostage captured the 3-meter in a narrow win at No. 7 Arizona. A week later, Stellar again won both competitions on Jan. 30 against No. 20 UCLA, while Hostage won the 1-meter in a victory over No. 12 USC. The duo again earned a pair of first place finishes Feb. 13 at BYU, with Stellar earning high scores on the 1-meter and Hostage doing the same on the 3-meter. Finally, Hostage won the 1-meter Feb. 14 at No. 11 California, while Stellar captured the 3-meter in Berkeley.
Since the calendar turned to 2009, all four Stanford divers - Stellar, Hostage, senior Sarah Ohr and freshman Mary Beth Corbett - have recorded at least one 'A' qualifying score for the NCAA Zone E Diving Championships.
One of only three active collegiate swimmers to have earned a pair of medals at the 2008 Olympics, Smit helped the U.S. team to the podium with her preliminary efforts in the two freestyle relay events - the 400-meter (silver) and the 800-meter (bronze).
Breeden swam a trio of events in her first Olympics, and earned a silver medal after helping the Americans to a heat-winning time in the 400-meter medley relay preliminaries. The medal further cemented Breeden's place among America's top butterfly talents, as she was the top U.S. finisher in the 200-meter fly with a time of 2:07.57.
Caroline Bruce, who competed in the 2004 Athens Games, gives Stanford a trio of former United States Olympians.
RELATED NEWS & VIDEOS
TOMORROW | 11:00am PTLive
TOMORROW | 1:00pm PTLive
TOMORROW | 3:00pm PTLive