No. 5 Cal Faces No. 4 Stanford on Saturday
Feb. 9, 2010
On the Pool Deck
Fifth-ranked California (5-1, 3-1 in the Pac-10) battles rival and fourth-ranked Stanford (8-0, 4-0 Pac-10) at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 13 at the Cardinal's Avery Aquatics Center. The Golden Bears last competed on Jan. 30, when they topped UCLA, 167-128, in Los Angeles. Last season, Cal fell to Stanford, 169-129, at Spieker Aquatics Complex in Berkeley before winning the Pac-10 and NCAA Championships.
The Bears last won at Avery Aquatics Center in 2006, taking a 169-131 result to finish that regular season unbeaten with an 11-0 (7-0 Pac-10) dual-meet record.
Against common opponents (Pacific, Arizona, Arizona State, UCLA and USC) this season, Cal has produced a 4-1 record and Stanford has compiled a 5-0 mark. Cal's only loss was at USC, 153-147, on Jan. 29.
Scouting the Golden Bears
The Bears have produced strong times in the relays and had amazing swims from several Bears, including junior Amanda Sims, sophomore Sara Isakovic and freshman Caitlin Leverenz. Nationally, Cal ranks in the top 10 in all five relays. The Bears rank seventh in the 200-yard freestyle relay (1:31.13, NCAA B consideration time), fourth in the 400-freestyle relay (3:17.60, NCAA B), second in the 800-free relay (7:07.11, NCAA B), tied for 10th with Stanford in the 200-medley relay (1:40.05, NCAA B) and third in the 400-medley relay (3:37.09, NCAA B). Cal is faster than Stanford in the 800-free and 400-medley relays, while the Cardinal is faster in the 200-free relay (1:29.22, 1st, NCAA B) and 400-free relay (3:17.28, 3rd, NCAA B).
Isakovic, the 2008 Slovenian Olympic silver medalist in the 200-meter free, ranks second nationally in the 200-yard free (1:44.95, NCAA B) and sixth nationally in the 200 butterfly (1:55.66, NCAA B). Sims, the defending NCAA champion in the 100 fly, ranks seventh in the 100 fly with an NCAA B time of 52.96 and is tied for eighth in the 200 fly with an NCAA B time of 1:56.30. Leverenz, Cal's record-holder in the 400-individual medley, ranks fourth in the 400 IM in an automatic NCAA qualifying time of 4:06.69 and seventh in the 200 IM (1:57.97, NCAA B).
In diving, Bears sophomore Molly Hayes and freshman Kelsey Heiken have produced some good results of late, with Heiken winning the one-meter springboard against UCLA and Hayes sweeping both springboard events against Arizona on Jan. 23.
Teri McKeever, the 2009 NCAA and Pac-10 Coach of the Year, has compiled a 146-50 dual-meet record to this point of her 18th season as Cal's head coach.
Scouting the Cardinal
Stanford last competed on Jan. 30, when the Cardinal defeated USC, 179-119, in Los Angeles. The Cardinal features a talented lineup, including seniors and 2009 individual NCAA champions Julia Smit (200 and 400 IMs) and Elaine Breeden (200 fly). Smit currently leads the nation with the fastest times in the 200 IM (1:55.45, NCAA A) and 400 IM (4:03.31, NCAA A), while junior teammate Kelsey Ditto paces the country in the 1650 free (9:46.80, NCAA A). Breeden and Smit were also 2008 U.S. Olympians, with Smit collecting silver in the 400-meter free relay and bronze in the 800-free relay and Breeden earning silver in the 400-medley relay.
Senior diver Carmen Stellar, the 2009 platform champ at Pac-10s, finished 14th in the platform at 2009 NCAAs.
Lea Maurer, who led Stanford to third place at Pac-10s and fourth place at NCAAs in 2009, is in her fifth year of coaching her alma mater.
The Cal swimmers head to Long Beach, Calif., for the Pac-10 Women's Swimming Championships on Feb. 24-27 at the Belmont Plaza Olympic Pool. The Cal divers compete in the Pac-10 Men's and Women's Diving Championships on Feb. 25-27 at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Complex in Federal Way, Wash.