SAN LUIS OBISPO, CALIF. – Freshman standout Ryan Murphy topped Cal challengers Josh Prenot and three-time defending champion Marcin Tarczynski to earn the “King of the Pool” title Friday (Sept. 20) during an exhibition pentathlon swim meet Friday (Sept. 21) at Cal Poly's Anderson Aquatic Center in San Luis Obispo.
Murphy, from The Bolles School in Florida, opened his Golden Bear career on a high note, combining the day's overall fastest times in the 100 fly, 100 back, 100 breast, 100 free and 100 individual medley. The Cal newcomer, who was rated one of the nation's two six-star recruits by SwimmingWorldMagazine.com, had the lowest aggregate time of 4:13.11 at the meet, edging Prenot’s overall mark of 4:14.72, and Tarczynski’s time of 4:15.71.
As a freshman, Prenot was the 2013 Pac-12 champion in the 400 IM and was named the conference’s Newcomer of the Year. Tarczynski, the 2012 NCAA champion in the 200 IM, had won the “King of the Pool” title the past three years.
Murphy captured the "King of the Pool" honor by placing first in the 100 back (47.43) and 100 IM (50.14). He also had the third fastest time in the 100 free (45.66), the sixth fastest time in the 100 fly (50.23) and the eighth fastest time in the 100 breast (59.65).
Other individual event winners for the Bears included Prenot in the 100 breast (56.03), junior Seth Stubblefield in the 100 fly (48.38) and sophomore Tyler Messerschmidt in the 100 free (44.52).
On Saturday (Sept. 21), the Cal men will team up with the Cal women for co-ed races in the 200-yard medley relay and 200 freestyle relay.
The Bears will again vie for an NCAA crown in 2014 after winning national championships in 2011 and 2012 and finishing as the national runners-up in 2013. Leading Cal will be two individual champions from 2012 – senior Tarczynski (200 individual medley) and junior Will Hamilton (200 butterfly) – plus four members (senior Shayne Fleming, juniors Stubblefield and Fabio Gimondi, sophomore Messerschmidt) of title-winning relays. Additionally, Cal features standout sophomores Prenot and Jacob Pebley (third in the NCAAs in the 200 backstroke), plus Murphy, who was third in the 200 back at this summer’s U.S. national championships.