No. 3 Cal Sends Five Individuals, One Relay to NCAA Day 1 Finals

March 16, 2006

ATHENS, Ga. - The No. 3 California women's swimming team qualified five individuals and one relay for Thursday night's finals on Day 1 of the 2006 NCAA Championships at the University of Georgia's Gabrielsen Natatorium.

The Golden Bears stormed through the preliminary round of the 500-yard freestyle, with junior Erin Reilly (4:41.51) taking second and senior Ashley Chandler finishing third (4:41.52) with just one, one-hundredths of a second between them. Both Reilly and Chandler swam lifetime best times in the prelims. Reilly entered the prelims seeded fourth and Chandler fifth. The top eight swimmers move on to the championship final, while swimmers 8-16 advance to the consolation final of each event.

In the 200 IM, sophomore Rachel Ridgeway and senior Helen Silver locked up spots in the consolation final, with Ridgeway in 11th (2:00.08) and Silver in 14th (2:00.67). Ridgeway was seeded 34th in the prelims, with Silver seeded 22nd. The time was a lifetime best for Ridgeway and a season best for Silver.

Sophomore Emily Silver qualified for the championship final of the 50 free, finishing eighth in the prelims in a lifetime-best time of 22.44. She was seeded 17th in the event.

Cal's 400 medley relay team of freshmen Lauren Rogers and Jessica Hardy, and sophomores Leann Toomey and Emily Silver move on to the final after finishing fourth in the prelims (3:36.43). The Bears were seeded fourth in that event.

For live scoring of the NCAA Championships, visit

Day 1 Preliminary results

50 freestyleEmily Silver, 8th, 22.44

400 medley relayCalifornia, 4th, 3:36.43Lauren Rogers, Jessica Hardy, Leann Toomey, Emily Silver

500 freestyleErin Reilly, 2nd, 4:41.51Ashley Chandler, 3rd, 4:41.52

200 IMRachel Ridgeway, 11th, 2:00.08Helen Silver, 14th, 2:00.67

200 freestyle relay - DQ

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