Oct. 11, 2011
Thur., Oct. 13 Hawaii, Spieker Aquatics Complex, Berkeley, Calif. 12 p.m.
The California men's swimming and diving team - the 2011 NCAA team champions with four individual champions (Nathan Adrian 50 and100 free, Damir Dugonjic 100 breast, Tom Shields 100 back) and three relay titles (400 free, 200 and 400 medley) - will open its 2011-12 dual meet schedule this Thursday (Oct. 13, 12 p.m.) versus Hawaii at Spieker Aquatics Complex. The Rainbows are led by junior Luca Mazzurana, who was the 2011 Conference USA champion and qualified for the NCAAs in 100 and 200 fly, and 200 IM. The Golden Bears - despite losing standouts Adrian, Dugonjic, relay stars Graeme Moore, Guy Barnea and Josh Daniels, and Martti Aljand - still feature 10 returning All-Americans from 2011. Junior Shields is a six-time NCAA champion after winning the 100 fly as a freshman in 2010 to go with his 100 back title as a sophomore, and had been on national champion 400 free and 400 medley (butterfly leg) relays each of the last two years. He was the 2010 Pac-10 Freshman of the Year and the 2011 Pac-10 Swimmer of the Meet. Shields is the Cal school record-holder in the 200 free (1:32.75), 100 back (45.02), 100 fly (44.78) and 200 fly (1:40.31). Other top returning All-Americans include senior Nolan Koon, the 2009 and 2011 Pac-10 champion in the 200 breast, and the 2011 national runner-up in 100 breast. Senior Martin Liivamagi is another outstanding veteran for the Bears, winning the 2010 Pac-10 title in the 200 IM, and placing fifth in both the 200 and 400 IM at the 2011 NCAA meet. Liivamagi is the Bears' school record-holder in the 200 (1:43.05) and 400 IM (3:43.55).
Golden Bears to Date
In Cal's first competition this season, sophomore Marcin Tarczynski was crowned the "King of the Pool" for the second year in a row during an exhibition pentathlon swim meet Sept. 23 at Cal Poly combining the day's overall fastest times in the 100 fly, 100 back, 100 breast, 100 free and 100 individual medley. Tarczynski, a sophomore from Warsaw, Poland, had the lowest aggregate time of 4:16.18, edging senior Liivamagi's overall mark of 4:17.50 and junior Shield's time of 4:17.79. Tarczynski placed second in 100 fly (49.21), 100 back (49.77) and the 100 IM (51.69). He was also sixth in the 100 breast (58.39) and the 100 free (47.12). The individual event winners for the meet included Shields in four events - the 100 fly (48.42), 100 back (48.91), 100 free (45.37) and 100 IM (50.40) - while Liivamagi captured the 100 breast with a time of 55.79.
2010-11 in Review/2011-12 Newcomers
Last March in Minneapolis, Durden guided the Bears to their first NCAA team title since 1980. In his spectacular fourth year at Cal, Durden led his 2010-11 squad to a 4-1 (3-1 in the Pac-10) dual-meet record and a second-place finish in the conference meet before bringing the program its first national championship in 31 years with a dominating 493 to 470.5 point victory over second place Texas in the team standings. At the 2011 NCAA meet, Durden's squad collected seven titles - the 50 and 100 frees (senior Nathan Adrian), the 100 back (sophomore Tom Shields), the 100 breast (senior Damir Dugonjic), the 400 free relay (Graeme Moore, Josh Daniels, Shields and Adrian), the 200 medley relay (Guy Barnea, Dugonjic, Moore and Adrian) and the 400 medley relay (Barnea, Dugonjic, Shields and Adrian). This season, the Bears welcome in six new swimmers who signed letters of intent back in November, 2010 - Will Hamilton, Christian Higgins, Adam Hinshaw, Adam Jorgensen, Tyler Messerschmidt and Seth Stubblefield. For more information on Cal's newcomers click on Cal Swimming Signs Six.
Head Coach David Durden
David Durden is in his fifth season at Cal, leading the Bears to the 2011 NCAA team title and owning a 20-7 (.741) dual meet record. Durden was both the 2010 and 2011 Pac-10 Coach of the Year and NCAA Coach of the Meet. In 2011, he mentored four individual national champions (Nathan Adrian 50 and 100 free, Damir Dugonjic 100 breast, Tom Shields 100 back) and three relay national titles (400 free relay, 200 and 400 medley relays). Durden joined the Golden Bears in 2007 upon the retirement of Hall of Fame coach Nort Thornton, who is now Head Coach Emeritus.