Women's and Men's Teams At Texas Invitational

Nov. 30, 2005

The No. 8 USC men's swimming and diving team and the No. 10 women's team are off to the Lone Star state to participate in the 2005 Texas Invitational from Thursday to Saturday (Dec. 1-3) at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center in Austin, Texas. Among the schools scheduled to compete in the meet besides host Texas and USC are Arizona and Arizona State, Michigan, Wisconsin, Hawaii, Tulane, Pacific, UC Santa Barbara, Missouri, TCU and California. In a pool that traditionally leads to fast times, USC Coach Mark Schubert is looking for strong results as the Trojans seek early season NCAA qualifying marks. Prelims begin at 9 a.m. (MST) each day.

TOP TIMES - USC freshman Rebecca Soni's 2:10.95 is the top 200y breast time in the nation and an NCAA automatic qualifying time. Her time in the 100y breast (1:01.77) is currently second fastest in the country. Fellow freshman Melissa McIntyre's 1:02.30 in the event is sixth fastest. Soni also has the 13th fastest time in the 400y IM (4:19.02) ... Ous Mellouli owns two top 10 times, including fifth in the 500y free (4:23.00) and sixth in the 200y IM (1:48.91). Sophomore Viktor Bodrogi is third in the 200y back (1:44.96) and ninth in the 100y back (48.71).

2005-2006 SO FAR - USC opened the 2005-2006 season at the Pacific Invite in Stockton, Calif., where women's winners included Cait Connealy and freshmen Kristin Lahey and Rebecca Soni. Ous Mellouli won four times for the men's squad ... At the 2005 Trojan Diving Invitational (Nov. 11-12), Blythe Hartley won the 1-meter competition while junior Kenny Jenkins led the men's team with a win on platform ... Also that weekend, USC's men's team hosted No. 6 Texas and was edged, 157143. Ous Mellouli won three races (500y and 1000y free and 400y IM) while junior Sam Masson (100y and 200y fly) won twice in the loss ... USC opened Pac-10 competition at Arizona and Arizona State on Nov. 18 and 19, falling in Tucson to the Wildcats, but sweeping the Sun Devils in Tempe the following day. Senior Ous Mellouli for the men and freshman Rebecca Soni for the women each won three events apiece at ASU. Soni posted USC's first NCAA automatic qualifying time of the season, crushing the field in the 200y breast (2:10.95).

MEN'S RETURNING ALL-AMERICANS - The Trojan men are looking to improve upon their ninth-place finish at the 2005 NCAA Championships and are led by six returning All-Americans. Ous Mellouli was a four-time All-American as a 2005 junior, reaching the finals of the 500y and 1650y free in addition to his title in the 400y IM and his spot anchoring the 400y medley relay. Larsen Jensen was a two-time All-American, winning the 1650y free and making the final of the 500y free. Junior Mihaly Flaskay was a three-time All-American, finishing second in the 100y breast (finishing out of first by 0.24) while swimming on USC's championship final 200y and 400y medley relays. Juniors Sam Masson (fly) and Viktor Bodrogi (back) also swam on USC's NCAA medley relays to each earn a pair of All-American honors while junior Sean Sussex earned his All-American nod as the anchor of the 200y medley relay. The only All-American not returning is graduated diver Ray Vincent, who reached the platform final three consecutive seasons.

WOMEN'S RETURNING ALL-AMERICANS - Like the men's team, the USC women are ready and poised to improve upon their 10th-place 2005 NCAA finish and feature four returning All-Americans. Senior Blythe Hartley won her third career NCAA title in 2005, winning the 3-meter springboard. She also won the 1-meter and platform titles in 2002. She has never finished lower than fifth in any NCAA Championship diving competition. Also in 2005, Hartley won her second career World Championships title, winning on 1-meter. She has six career Pac-10 crowns. Junior Kalyn Keller, a 2004 Olympian, was an All-American in 2005 after winning an NCAA title in the 1500m free in 2004. Junior Cait Connealy and sophomore Emily Goetsch are also returning All-Americans (both earned the honor as part of the 800y free relay). USC is without two 2005 All-Americans who finished their eligibility, Joanna Fargus (a current undergrad coach) and Marisa Kozak.

USC AT THE 2005 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS - Larsen Jensen won a pair of silver medals at the 2005 World Championships in the 800m (re-setting his own American record) and 1500m free while Ous Mellouli won two bronze medals in the 400m IM and 400m free. Blythe Hartley won her second career title on 1-meter.

TROJANS SCHEDULED TO COMPETE AT THE 2006 SHORT COURSE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS - Jensen, freshman Rebecca Soni and former Trojan and current volunteer coach Kaitlin Sandeno have been selected to represent the United States at the 2006 FINA Short Course World Championships (25m), April 5-9, in Shanghai, China. In addition, USC Coach Mark Schubert will serve as an assistant coach on the women's team.

USC IN ANY LANGUAGE - The Trojan swimming and diving teams have featured diverse rosters for years and this season is no different. The men's squad includes swimmers from Tunisia (Mellouli), Hungary (Bodrogi and Gergely Meszaros), Italy (Vanni Mangoni), Guatemala (Evan Marcus) and South Korea (Joon Youm). Blythe Hartley on the women's team is from Canada while Head Diving Coach Hongping Li is Chinese and sophomore Renee Viveros has competed for the Mexican national team.

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