No. 24 Huskies In Sixth at Pac-10 Championships

Feb. 26, 2009

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FEDERAL WAY, Wash. - The No. 24 Washington women's swim team continued to hang in with some of the top swim teams in the country in the Pac-10 Swimming & Diving Championships at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center, holding onto sixth place in the standings after the second of four days of competition.

The Huskies just missed a second school relay record in two nights, finishing fourth in the 200 free relay in 1:30.98, just .18 shy of the record set last season at the NCAA Championships. Lindsey Sharp, Erin Campbell, Kelly Flynn and Emilee Jennings swam their best 200 free time of the season and earned an NCAA B time.

The best individual performance was turned in by junior Petra Radovic, who finished eighth in the 500 free, her first career top-eight finish in a Pac-10 Championship. The Croatia native swam a time of 4:44.05 in the prelims, a personal best time which ranks No. 2 all time at UW and was an NCAA B time. She swam the finals in 4:44.28.

Also earning NCAA B times in the 500 free were Liz Johnson and Ashley Daly, who finished 14th and 15th, respectively, with Johnson finishing in 4:47.95 and Daly in 4:48.35. The time for Johnson is also a career-best and moves her into No. 3 all time at UW. Daly moved up to No. 4 while Kelly Flynn finished 21st in 4:51.39, her personal best and the fifth-fastest time in UW history.

In the 200 IM, sisters Jen and Danielle Gong finished within five seconds of each other to place 11th and 13th, respectively. Jen Gong's time of 2:00.45 was just a hair slower than her prelim time of 2:00.31, which was the third-fastest time in UW history. Danielle's finals time of 2:00.50 was a personal best for her as well and moved her into the fourth spot on the all time list.

The Gong sisters were surpassed time wise by senior Genevieve Patterson, however, who finished second in the C final to Olympic gold medalist Rebecca Soni of USC to place 18th overall. Her time of 2:00.06 was the eighth-fastest of the night and moved her up to No. 2 all time at UW.

The story of the 200 IM was Stanford's Julia Smit, a two-time Olympic medalist, who set a Pac-10, NCAA and U.S. record, winning the race in 1:53.11.

In the 50 free, Lindsey Sharp was the highest UW finisher, placing 15th in 22.84, a personal best which keeps her in the No. 2 spot all time. Swimming in the C final, Emilee Jennings also topped her previous best time, moving up to No. 3 in UW history with a 22.92.

Arizona's Lara Jackson repeated in the 50 free, falling just .03 shy of equaling her own NCAA record of 21.36.

As a team, UW sits in sixth place with 261 points, just behind UCLA, which is in fifth with 284. Defending champion Arizona is first with 510.5 points. Washington is one of three teams (Oregon State, Washington State) in the competition without a diving program and diving points are factored into the team scores. All five teams ahead of UW are ranked in the top 20 nationally.

'We swam pretty well, we had a lot of girls with top-10 times. Liz and Petra swam well in the 500. Petra didn't swim as well tonight but to go 4.44 is a heck of a time for her,' Washington head coach Whitney Hite said. 'We were in an unfortunate position in the relay being between Stanford and Arizona and our team suffered because of it. It's hard to swim in between two teams that are a heck of a lot faster than you are, but we're doing alright. We're not as sharp as I'd like us to be but we have a lot of swims left. We're in shouting distance of UCLA and if it wasn't for diving we'd be in fifth and we'd also be a lot closer to USC. We're doing some good things. We just have to keep fighting for everything.'

The Huskies will look to move up in the standings Friday with some of their stronger events, including the 400 medley relay.

'The keys for us tomorrow are the 200 frees and our medley relay tomorrow night. That is our best event and we have to get it going,' Hite said. 'Genevieve Patterson will swim the 100 breast and Erin Campbell will swim some 100s, and the Gong sisters will surprise some people in the 400 IM.'

In the diving competition, Arizona State's Micky Benedetti captured his second consecutive men's 3-meter title, edging USC's Harrison Jones. Marisa Samaniego of UCLA won the women's 1-meter diving.

Competition continues Friday with preliminaries starting at 11 a.m. and finals kicking off at 6 p.m. Finals will be held in the 400 IM, 200 free, 100 breast, 100 back and 400 medley relay along with the women's 3-meter diving finals and men's platform prelims and finals. Competition concludes Saturday evening.

Team Standings
1, Arizona, 510.5
2, California, 448.5
3, Stanford, 430
4, USC, 327
5, UCLA, 284
6, Washington, 261
7, Arizona State, 146
8, Oregon State, 143
9, Washington State, 126

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