Swim & Dive Set to Battle Pac-10 Foes Stanford and Cal This Weekend

Jan. 25, 2006

The No. 7 UCLA swim and dive team will play host to two Pac-10 foes this weekend as they host No. 3 Stanford on Friday and No. 6 California on Saturday. Swimming events will begin at 2:00 pm on Friday, while dive is slated to get underway at 12:00 pm. On Saturday, the Bruin swimmers will take to the pool at 12:00 pm, while dive begins at 11:00 am.

The Bruins, who have taken a break from Pac-10 action in recent weeks for invitationals and other dual meets, will look to improve to 8-1 (4-1 Pac-10) with wins this weekend. Last season, Stanford defeated UCLA 176-124, while the Bruins defeated California 161-139.

'We are looking forward to the challenge of swimming against Stanford and Cal this weekend,' said Head Coach Cyndi Gallagher. 'The Pac-10 Conference is a tough conference with either one of these teams having a shot to win NCAA's. Our job is to try and improve from the last meet, compete well and rise to the occassion. If we do that, we will be one step closer to being at our best at Pac-10's and the NCAA Championships.The meets should be exciting as we always have great races. Against Stanford, Kim Vandenberg and Dana Kirk (2004 Olympian) always battle and switch off on who finishes on top. The Cal dual meet the past three or four years has come down to the last event. They should both be exciting meets!'

'I am very excited about the opportunities that we will have against these two Pac-10 opponents,' said Dive Coach Tom Stebbins. 'In Stanford we face a storied program and one of the best coaches in the country, with one of our country's premiere springboard athletes. In Cal, we get a young program that always presents an obstacle in our desire to win our area and help our swimming team.'

This weekend's meets are the first home competitions for the divers this year, while the swimmers have played host to two other dual meets.

The UCLA swim and dive team have had tremendous success this season and are poised for a strong Pac-10 and NCAA campaign.

So far this season, 10 Bruin swimmers have swam 'A' or 'B' qualifying times for the national meet - junior Katie Arnold (100/200 Backstroke, 50 Freestyle, 200/400 Medley Relay, 200/400 Free Relay),junior Jeana Fuccillo (400 IM and 200 Breast), junior Katie Nelson (500/1650 Freestyle, 200/400 IM), freshman Anna Poteete (50/100 Freestyle, 200/400 Free Relay, 200/400 Medley Relay), senior Eileen Seissen (100 Breast, 200/400 Medley Relay), freshman Madeleine Stanton (200 Back), sophomore Nicolette Teo (100/200 Breast), junior Amy Thurman (200/400 Free Relay, 200 Medley Relay), senior Kim Vandenberg (50/100/200 Free, 100/200{A} Butterfly, 200/400 Free Relay, 400 Medley Relay) and sophomore Chiemi Yamamoto (400 IM/200 Breast). The 200, 400 and 800 Free Relay have also achieved the 'B' qualifying time for Nationals.

Five divers have also punched their ticket to the NCAA Zone Meet in March. Senior Paige Thompson and junior Sara Clark have qualified on both 1M and 3M, while freshmen Marisa Samaniego has qualified on 1M. Freshman Brittany Hill has qualified on 1M and Platform, while freshman Tess Schofield has a Platform qualifying mark.

After this weekend's meets, UCLA will have only one more home meet as they face USC on February 11. The Bruin swimmers will then head to Long Beach, CA for the Pac-10 Swimming Championships (hosted by UCLA), while the divers head to Federal Way, WA for the Pac-10 Diving Championships (hosted by ASU) February 22-25.

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