Wildcats to Face Cardinal, Bears
Jan. 20, 2010
Arizona vs. Stanford - Friday, Jan. 22 beginning at 2 p.m.
Arizona vs. California - Saturday, Jan. 23 beginning at noon
To Date: Both UA swimming and diving teams are unbeaten heading into the weekend road trip. The women are a perfect 7-0 coming off their latest win against Oregon State, New Mexico State and NAU. The men prep for the trip to the Bay Area at 4-0 after defeating SMU in their last outing.
Top Five Teams Across the Board: Taking a look at the CollegeSwimming.com rankings, the Arizona men and women teams along with those from Stanford and California are all ranked amongst the top five. In terms of the women, Arizona is No. 2 in the country, followed by Stanford at No. 3 and Cal at No. 5. For the men, the Cardinal is second in the rankings, the Golden Bears are third and the Wildcats are fourth. What does this all mean? Not much really other than the fact that this meet should be really fast.
Last season against Cal: In their meeting a year ago in Tucson, both Arizona men's and women's teams defeated their Golden Bear counterparts. The UA men won 171.5-128.5 while the women were victorious, 178-120. Later at the NCAA Championships in March, the Cal women took home the championship, beating out Arizona and Georgia in the final relay.
Last season vs. Stanford: One day after sweeping the Golden Bears in 2009, the Wildcats found themselves on the other side of the coin, losing to both the Stanford men's and women's teams. The women's meet is remembered for coming down to the final relay in which SU's Julia Smit pulled away from UA's Taylor Baughman for the clinching relay win. At the NCAA Championships, the Stanford men placed third, one week after the women placed fourth overall.
Preparing for the harsh weather: It seems as if every other year, when the Cats make their journey up to Northern California to face Cal and Stanford they are met with harsh weather. To combat this, the Wildcats will be looking less at their respective times and put more of an emphasis on their effort in terms of racing.
Looking for Diving help again: In last season's sweep of the Golden Bears, UA was able to capitalize on Ben Grado and Ainsley Oliver's career outings in the diving well. With their first-place finishes, the Cats went onto defeat Cal easily. Let's look for a repeat performance again in Berkeley.
Tough schedule ahead: Along with taking on the likes of Stanford and Cal this weekend, the Cats will host the Texas Longhorns on Jan. 29-30 at Hillenbrand Aquatic Center. With that slate, the men's and women's teams should definitely be battle tested for the postseason.