Dec. 6, 2011
ATLANTA, GA. - The University of California men's swimming program, under the direction of head coach David Durden, represented itself well during the Dec. 1-3 AT&T Winter National Championships hosted at the Georgia Tech Aquatic Center in Atlanta. Past, present and future Golden Bears excelled in the long course meters competition that will help them in preparation for Olympic Trials and possibly the 2012 London Olympics.
Former standout Nathan Adrian (2007, 09-11), the 2008 U.S. Olympian who concluded his collegiate career by helping propel the 2010-11 Cal men's swimming and diving team to an NCAA team championship in March, won the national titles in both the 50 and 100 free. On Dec. 1 Adrian clocked a time of 21.85 in the 50 free, and then won the 100 free in 48.33 on Dec. 3.
Also on Dec. 1, sophomore distance freestyler Jeremy Bagshaw finished 10th in the 400 free with a mark of 3:56.78.
Several Bears had solid swims on Dec. 2. Junior standout Tom Shields, the 2011 Pac-10 Swimmer of the Meet and national champion in the 100 back (2011) and 100 fly (2010), was fifth in the long course meters 100 fly with a time of 53.19, while senior Mathias Gydesen placed ninth in the 100 fly at 53.74.
The future for the Bears looks bright in the individual medley as recent letters of intent signees Josh Pernot and Jacob Pebley placed third and ninth, respectively, in the 400 IM in Atlanta. Pernot, from Orcutt, Calif., clocked in a time of 4:19.19. Pebley, from Corvallis, Ore., swam a 4:24.20 in the 400 IM.
Pebley was also outstanding in the 200 back as he finished second at the Winter Nationals with a time of 1:58.30 on Dec. 3. He placed sixth the 100 back as well with a time of 55.30. Former Cal star backstroker David Russell (2006-09) was fifth in the 100 back at 55.30, and Gydesen placed seventh with a time of 55.54.
Another swim of note was former national champion Damir Dugonjic's 10th place finish in the 100 breast with a time of 1:02.02. Dugonjic (2008-11) won three consecutive NCAA titles in the 100 breast from 2009-2011.
"We had a small group of our current swimmers compete in Atlanta who did a good job," said Durden. "We have been very analytical of our long course racing through the fall, and the feedback our swimmers gave after their races was very valuable in solidifying their race plans as we head into the 2012 calendar year. As for our former student-athletes, Nathan taking home national titles in both the 50 and 100 freestyle was special. As with our current Bears, our post-grads came away with some valuable information to take into the new calendar year."
The 2011-12 Bears, lead by two-time Pac-10 and NCAA Coach of the Year Durden, will next compete in Pac-12 dual meet competition, Friday, Jan. 20 versus Arizona (1 p.m.) and Saturday, Jan. 21 (12 p.m.) versus Arizona State at Spieker Aquatics Complex.