March 2, 2011
LONG BEACH, CALIF. - The California men's swimming team started off the 2011 Pac-10 Championships with a strong showing, capturing the 200 medley relay in a conference meet record-time of 1:23.92 Wednesday night at the Belmont Plaza Pool in Long Beach. The Golden Bears' squad of seniors Guy Barnea (backstroke), Damir Dugonjic (breaststroke), Graeme Moore (butterfly) and Nathan Adrian (freestyle) out-swam Stanford (1:25.42) to win the Pac-10 title, while also topping the former Pac-10 meet record of 1:23.98 set by Cal in 2009.
The Bears' 1:23.92 in the 200 medley relay is the fastest time in the country in that event this season. Dugonjic and Moore were on that Cal relay that won the conference crown and held the former record in 2009.
In the second event of the evening, the 800 free relay, the Bears' squad of sophomore Tom Shields, freshman Sam Metz, junior Isaac Howell and sophomore Ben Hinshaw, came in third with a time of 6:21.13, behind Stanford (6:19.17) and USC (6:20.88).
After two events of the 2011 Pac-10 meet, Cal narrowly trails Stanford, 74-72. Thursday's events will include the 500 free, the 200 IM, the 50 free and the 200 free relay. The Bears are the defending Pac-10 champions in the 200 IM (junior Martin Liivamagi) and the 50 free (Adrian).
Following the Pac-10 championships, in which Stanford has won 29 consecutive titles, Cal will compete at the 2011 NCAA Championships, March 24-26, in Minneapolis, Minn. Last season the Bears were the national runners-up to Texas.