California Leads After Day Three of the Pac-10 Men's Swimming Championships
March 5, 2010
LONG BEACH, Calif.- Freshman Tom Shields of California won the100-yard butterfly event and took third in the 200-yard freestyle event to propel the Bears past the Cardinal for the overall lead on the third evening of competition at the Pac-10 Men’s Swimming and Diving Championships at Belmont Plaza Olympic Pool in Long Beach, Calif.
Shields, who was the 2009 National High School Swimmer of the Year, turned in a NCAA “A” qualifying time of 45.75 to win the 100-yard butterfly event edging out Stanford senior Eugene Godsoe who turned in an NCAA consideration time of 46.10. The Bears’ Graeme Moore took the last spot on the podium with an NCAA consideration time of 46.29.
“Today went really well,” Shields said. “I never would have thought I would have won anything in the fly but my coach thought it would be good and it turned great for us.”
The Bears, with 570 points, won three of the six events Friday to take a 10 point lead over the Cardinal (560),who have won the 28 straight Pac-10 Conference titles heading into the final day tomorrow.
Stanford sophomore Bobby Bollier won the first event of the evening, the 400-yard I.M., in a NCAA consideration time of 3:45.05 and it looked like the Cardinal was picking up from where they left off the night before. But the Bears won two of the next three events and the momentum had clearly started to swing in California’s favor.
“I could feel the tension among my teammates,” Bollier said. “Cal had a lot of qualifiers in tonight’s events and I think we were thinking about that a lot so I was glad I could get a victory for our team.”
Arizona’s Jack Brown (3:46.05), California’s Ben Hinshaw (3:46.48), and Aaron Casey (3:47.58) followed Bollier to the wall, respectively. All four men notched NCAA
consideration qualifying times.
USC’s Clement Lefert (1:34.25), who represented France at 2008 Olympics, won the 200-yardfreestyle while teammate Patrick White (1:35.02) took second and the Bears’
Tom Shields (1:35.87) claimed the final spot on the podium.
The winner of the100-yard breaststroke was California junior Damir Dugonic, who is a
three-time NCAA All-American and the current NCAA Champion and record holder in the event, turned in a NCAA “A” qualifying time of 52.12, edging out Stanford sophomore Curtis Lovelace by just under four tenths of a second (52.51). Dillon Connolly finished third with an NCAA “A” qualifying time 53.25.
The Bears finished off the day winning the 400 medley relay, as breaststroker Tom Shields took over the lead before handing it off to 2008 Beijing Olympic Gold Medalist, Nathan Adrian (freestyle) for the final 100-yard leg in an NCAA “A” qualifying time of 3:05.71. Stanford who finished second had the lead for the first half of the event before the Bears’ made their move.
“A lot of emotion was involved in that race,” Adrian, the 2009 NCAA Champion in the 50 yard and100 yard freestyle events, said. “We want to be the first team to beat them and we know its is going to be a lot of hard work tomorrow but I think if we have the kind of day we had today we should be in good shape for the championship.”
Action resumes at the Belmont Plaza Olympic Pool in Long Beach, Calif., tomorrow with morning preliminaries set to take off at 11 a.m. with the finals scheduled to get underway 6 p.m.. Watch a live stream of the swims at http://www.pac-10.org/championships/2010-Mswim.html.
Men's Team Rankings Through Day 3 (of 4):
1. California, 570
2. Stanford, 560
3. Arizona, 434
4. USC, 349
5. Arizona State, 227