No. 5 Cal Hosts Arizona State, No. 2 Arizona in Last Home Meets
Jan. 20, 2010
On the Pool Deck
Fifth-ranked California (2-0 record) returns to action this week when it hosts Arizona State (6-3, 2-2 Pac-10) and No. 2 Arizona (7-0, 3-0 Pac-10) in its final two home dual meets and first Pac-10 dual meets of the season. The Golden Bears take on the Sun Devils at 1 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 22 and face the Wildcats at noon on Saturday, Jan. 23 at Spieker Aquatics Complex. The ASU dual meet will take place on Senior Day, when Cal will honor its six seniors - Lauren Boyle, Alexandra Ellis, Courtney Eronemo, Blake Hayter, Amanda Larson and Heather White - competing in their final meet in Berkeley.
The meets will also feature the Cal men taking on their Arizona State and Arizona counterparts.
Scouting the Golden Bears
The Cal swimmers are coming off a training trip to Hawaii in early January. The Golden Bears, who are the defending NCAA and Pac-10 champions, last swam in the Dec. 3-5 Short Course National Championships, which they won, and in the Dec. 6 Long Course National Invitational. The Cal divers last competed in the Dec. 3-5 Texas Swimming and Diving Hall of Fame Invitational.
Bears junior Amanda Sims, the 2009 NCAA champion in the 100-yard butterfly, currently paces Cal in the 100 fly with an NCAA B qualifying time of 52.96, which ranks fourth in the Pac-10. Sophomore and 2008 Slovenian Olympian Sara Isakovic holds the fastest time in the 200 free in the Pac-10 with an NCAA B cut of 1:44.95. Lauren Boyle ranks second in the conference with her time in the 1650 free (16:07.21, NCAA B).
Caitlin Leverenz, who holds Cal's 400 individual medley record of 4:06.69, has made a big impact in her first year as a Golden Bear. Her 400-IM record ranks third fastest in the conference and is an NCAA automatic qualifying time. Leverenz also ranks third in the Pac-10 in the 200 IM (1:57.97, NCAA B) and 200 breaststroke (2:12.37, NCAA B).
The Bears, who have won the 800-free relay at Pac-10s for six straight years, currently lead the conference in the 800-free relay with an NCAA B time of 7:07.11 (Leverenz, Boyle, sophomore Liv Jensen and Isakovic). They rank right behind Arizona in the Pac-10 with the second-fastest 400-medley relay (3:37.09, NCAA B; junior Erica Dagg, Leverenz, Sims and Jensen) and with the second-best 200-medley relay (tied with Stanford at 1:40.05, NCAA B; Dagg, Leverenz, Sims and Jensen).
Scouting the Sun Devils
Sophomore Rebecca Ejdervik, a member of the Swedish national team, is among the Sun Devils' top swimmers. She holds the Pac-10's sixth-fastest time in the 100 breaststroke (1:02.28, NCAA B). ASU is strong in the breaststroke, as sophomore Jordyn Green ranks eighth in the 200 (2:14.35, NCAA B) and is tied for ninth in the 100 (1:02.46, NCAA B).
Other notable Sun Devils include senior Jamie Martinez (10th in the Pac-10 in the 100 back, 55.13, NCAA B, and 10th in the Pac-10 in the 200 back, 1:57.80, NCAA B), junior Katie Haron (9th in the Pac-10 in the 50 free, 23.12) and sophomore Elina Eggers, a 2008 Swedish Olympian. Eggers was named the Pac-10 Diver of the Month for December after setting the school record in the one-meter springboard with an NCAA qualifying mark of 339.90 last month. She also posted NCAA qualifiers at three meters (327.85) and on the platform (263.70).
Former Texas All-American Dorsey Tierney-Walker is in her first year as the head coach of the Arizona State men's and women's programs.
Scouting the Wildcats
Second-ranked Arizona should be one of contenders in the conference and national championships again in 2010. The Wildcats finished third behind Cal and runner-up Georgia in the NCAA Championships and placed second in the Pac-10 meet last season.
Wildcats rank among the fastest swimmers in the conference in several events. Senior Ana Agy, the 2009 Pac-10 champion in the 100-yard backstroke, holds this season's fastest time in the Pac-10 in the 100 back (52.64, NCAA automatic qualifier) and 100 butterfly (52.51, NCAA B). In fact, Arizona has swum the three fastest Pac-10 times in the 100 fly so far this season, with sophomore Whitney Lopus (52.75, NCAA B) and senior Erin Campbell (52.91, NCAA B) ranking second and third, respectively.
Arizona sophomore Alyssa Anderson, the defending 500-free Pac-10 champ, paces the Pac-10 in the 500 free (4:40.05, NCAA B). The Wildcats also hold the Pac-10's top times in the 400-free relay (3:17.07, NCAA B), 200-medley relay (1:38.54, NCAA B) and 400-medley relay (3:34.34, NCAA B).
Frank Busch, the 2008 NCAA Men's and Women's Coach of the Year, is in his 21st season as head coach of Arizona. Former Cal assistant coach Whitney Hite, previously the head coach of the now defunct Washington program, is in his first year as an assistant coach at Arizona.
Cal heads to Los Angeles for Pac-10 dual meets with USC and UCLA. The Bears take on the Trojans at 1 p.m. on Jan. 29 and then face the Bruins at noon on Jan. 30.