Cal Competes at Pacific Invitational, Friday-Saturday

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Oct. 14, 2003

Cal (1-0) Competes at Pacific Invite
Bears back in Stockton, Calif. again this week

Date: Friday & Saturday, October 17-18, 2003
Place: University of Pacific, Stockton, Calif.
Time: 1 p.m.

Coming off its first win of the season at Pacific last Friday, the California men's swimming and diving team (1-0) turns right back around to again compete at Pacific this Friday and Saturday, Oct. 17-18 at the Pacific Invitational in Stockton, Calif. Last season at the invitational the Golden Bears finished second in their division.

The Golden Bears most recently faced Pacific, defeating the Tigers 150-102, last Friday. The following teams will also compete at this weekend's invitational: Cal State Bakersfield, San Francisco State, UC Davis and UC Santa Cruz. Out of those teams, Cal has only competed against CS Bakersfield in recent history, winning 19 out of 20 events against the Roadrunners in a meet last January.

Cal defeated Pacific by a score of 150-102. Senior Alex Lim led Cal with two wins in the 200-yard butterfly (1:54.23) and 200 individual medley (1:56.52). Other returning Bears who won events included junior John Dorr in the 1000 freestyle (9:28.49), junior Caleb Rowe in the 200 breast (2:03.07), sophomore Milorad Cavic in the 100 backstroke (52.51) and sophomore Ricky Barbosa in the 100 breaststroke (58.08). Rowe also notched a second-place finish in the 100 breast (59.74), and Dorr's time in the 1000 free is faster than his best time (9:31.54) from last season in that event. All five of those Bears were NCAA qualifiers last season. Cal's 400 medley relay (3:21.68) and 400 free relay (3:12.46) also picked up victories. In fact, all three of the Bears' 400 medley relay squads swept the first three places. The Bears' newcomers were equally impressive in their debuts. Rolandas Gimbutis, a freshman who came to Cal from Lithuania, won the 200 free (1:41.63), while senior transfer (University of Tennessee) Renato Gueraldi captured the 50 free (20.93). Freshman Daniel Lysaught, who hails from Australia, won the 500 free (4:36.72). Lysaught also turned in a second-place finish in the 200 free (1:42.15). Cal also had several men's swimmers notch runner-up and third-place finishes. Sophomore Ryan Lean touched the wall in second in the 1000 free (9:33.41), while Chris Gibson placed second in the 100 back (53.68). Sophomore Miguel Molina took second in the 200 back (1:56.94), while freshman Patrick O'Neill finished second in the 200 fly (1:55.54). Senior Keith Vogelgesang placed second in the 100 fly (53.73) and third in the 200 fly (1:55.87). Junior Duje Draganja finished third in the 50 free (21.32), while junior Steve Rehrmann placed third in the 200 free (1:43.58) and freshman Graham Lentz finished third in the 100 breast (1:00.39).

Cal will miss the experience and leadership of graduated seniors Joe Bruckart, Quentin Byma and Olympic gold medallist Anthony Ervin. However, this year's crop of returnees, along with 10 talented newcomers, are capable of continuing Cal's stature as one of the nation's elite teams. Seniors Alex Lim and Keith Vogelgesang are the 2003-04 team captains. Lim, an NCAA finalist in the 100 and 200 back and 100 fly last season, owns Cal's school records in both backstroke events. Jeff Natalizio is another senior on this season's team. Natalizio was an NCAA Championships qualifier. Juniors Duje Draganja, the NCAA 100 free champion, John Dorr, Brooks Jenkins, Steve Rehrmann, Caleb Rowe and Matt Schmelzer also return. Dorr and Rowe were also NCAA qualifiers last season. The Bears return a solid group of sophomores in Ricky Barbosa, Milorad Cavic, Chris Gibson, Evan Lane, Ryan Lean, Matt Lyon and Miguel Molina. Barbosa, Cavic, Lyon and Molina were NCAA qualifiers in their debut season, and Cavic etched his name into the school record book with Cal's fastest time ever in the 100 fly (46.10). Four of the 10 newcomers on this season's team hail from another country. Sprint freestylers in freshmen Rolandas Gimbutis (Lithuania) and Jonas Tilly (Sweden), and senior transfer Renato Gueraldi (Brazil), add depth to Cal's already strong sprint corps. Last year, Gueraldi held the fourth-fastest time in the country in the 50 free (19.41). Daniel Lysaught (Australia) will bolster Cal's distance free events. Blake Dickson (free), Eric Dunipace (free/back), Paul Hernandez (breast), Alexander Holdridge (fly/IM/free), Graham Lentz (breast) and Patrick O'Neil (fly) round out the newcomers.

2002-03 RECAP
Winning two titles (100 free/400 free relay) at the 2003 NCAA Championships, Cal finished fourth at the meet with 329 points. Duje Draganja (42.02) just edged runner-up and teammate Anthony Ervin (42.11) for the 100 free title. Ervin was a three-time NCAA champion in that event. The men's 400 free relay of Draganja, Milorad Cavic, Joe Bruckart and Ervin, posted the fastest time in Cal's history at 2:48.99. That time also set new NCAA and U.S. Open records. In all, last season's Golden Bears broke five school records (including the 400 free relay). The other four records included Alex Lim's mark in the 200 back (1:42.70), Cavic's 100 fly record (46.10), Bruckart's 200 IM record (1:44.30) and a new 400 medley relay record (Lim, Quentin Byma, Cavic, Ervin-3:08.68). At the Pac-10 Championships, Cal finished second (730.5 points) for the second consecutive year. Ervin and Bruckart completed their final Pac-10 seasons in style, each garnering two Pac-10 titles. Ervin proved to be the conference's top sprinter with championship victories in the 50 (19.28) and 100 (42.62) free, while Bruckart won the 200 IM (1:44.49). His victory in the 200 free (1:34.46) was the second-fastest time swam in that event in Cal history. Cavic also won an individual championship title, setting a new Pac-10 Championships record in the 100 fly (46.32). Ervin, Bruckart and Cavic, along with Draganja and freshman Matt Lyon also helped Cal to Pac-10 titles in the 200 (1:17.92) and 400 free relays (2:51.43). In the regular season, Cal nearly recorded a perfect dual meet record, until a 173-122 loss in its final meet against Stanford on Feb. 22. The 2002-03 squad finished 6-1 overall, 3-1 Pac-10.

Several returnees from the 2002-03 Golden Bears' squad were splashed on the 2003 College Quick 50-the top 50 times in the nation for each event. Additionally, Cal's 400 free relay was first in the country with a time of 2:48.99, while its 200 free relay was No. 3 (1:17.31), 800 free relay was No. 8 (6:26.30), 200 medley relay was No. 5 (1:26.10) and 400 medley relay was No. 4 (3:08.68).

The following swimmers were listed on the final compilation of 2002-03 top times.

Milorad Cavic 50 free (3rd, 19.37) 100 free (13th, 43.28) 100 fly (3rd, 46.10) 200 fly (46th, 1:47.68)Duje Draganja 50 free (22nd, 19.80) 100 free (1st, 42.02) 100 fly (4th, 46.40)Alex Lim 100 back (3rd, 46.41) 200 back (8th, 1:42.70) 100 fly (8th, 46.76)Jeff Natalizio 100 back (35th, 48.43) 200 back (15th, 1:44.16) 200 IM (19th, 1:47.18)John Dorr 500 free (35th, 4:22.89) 400 IM (23rd, 3:49.78)Miguel Molina 200 free (39th, 1:37.20) 400 IM (22nd, 3:49.77)Caleb Rowe 100 breast (27th, 55.13) 200 breast (21st, 1:58.06)Ricky Barbosa 100 breast (28th, 54.50)Ryan Lean 1650 free (42nd, 15:24.15)


HEAD COACH Nort Thornton
Nort Thornton, who was inducted into the CSCAA Hall of Fame last August, enters his 30th season as the skipper of the Cal men's swimming team. Thornton sports a career duel meet record of 206-80 (.720). He led the 2003 Cal squad to a fourth-place finish at the NCAA Championships. At the NCAA's, Duje Draganja won the 100 freestyle, while the 400 free relay also won a championship title with the fastest time in NCAA history. In his 29 years at Cal, Thornton led Cal to back-to-back NCAA titles in 1979 and 1980, 24 NCAA Top-10 finishes and a stellar cast of All-Americans. He has an impressive collection of Olympians-including world record holder Matt Biondi, and Olympic gold medallist and three-time NCAA 100 free champion Anthony Ervin. Thornton has been National Coach of the Year twice and the Pac-10 Coach of the Year four times, most recently in 1999.

Cal's co-head coach Mike Bottom has established himself as one of the world's top sprint coaches. At the 2003 NCAA's, Duje Draganja won the 100 freestyle, marking the fifth consecutive year that Bottoms' sprinters have won NCAA championship titles in the 100 free. At the 2003 FINA World Championships in Barcelona, Spain, Bottom coached athletes from seven different countries. In 2002, Bottom served as the official coach of the Croatian and Polish teams at the European Championships, and in 2001 Bottom served as a U.S. assistant coach at the FINA World Championships in Fukuoka, Japan. In 2000, for the first time in Olympic history, two men tied for the gold medal, and both were coached by Bottom (50m free-Anthony Ervin and Gary Hall, Jr.).

Tutoring both Cal's men and women divers for the 20th consecutive year is Phil Tonne, a former All-American diver at San Diego State. In 1991, Melissa Graviss became the first Cal diver to qualify for the NCAA Championship meet, earning All-American honors on the three-meter board. Graviss also qualified for the NCAAs in both the one and three-meter competition in 1992. Prior to coming to Cal in 1984, Tonne served in the same capacity at San Diego State from 1979 to 1984. Other coaching stints included a four-year stay at Palomar Junior College and Diablo Valley College in Concord. He currently also coaches a U.S. Diving Club Team in Walnut Creek, CA.

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