July 30, 2012
LONDON - On Day Three of the 2012 Summer Olympics, California Golden Bears represented their nations in women's water polo, women's swimming and men's and women's rowing, with seven former Bears and one current student-athlete competing in qualifying events in their quest for medals.
Women's Water Polo
Cal's Elsie Windes (2004-07) played almost 15 minutes of the United States' 14-13 win over Hungary Monday in the first match for both teams at these Summer Games. Heather Petri (1997-99, 01), did not see action.
The win puts USA into a tie with Spain at the top of Group A. Both at 1-0 with 2 points each, the U.S. and Spain meet Wednesday at 10:20 a.m. PT. The match will air on NBC by tape delay at 12:20 p.m. PT.
Preliminaries wrap up for the U.S. with China on Friday at 11:40 a.m. PT. Quarterfinals in the two-group, eight-team competition begin with a knockout format on Sunday, Aug. 5. The gold medal match is on Thursday, Aug. 9.
Caitlin Leverenz advanced to Tuesday's final in the 200-meter individual medley by posting a Monday time of 2:10.06 - the third-fastest overall semifinal time; that was also the third-fastest time in her semi.
Leverenz won the 200-meter IM at the U.S. Olympic Trials earlier this month and captured the 200-yard IM at the NCAA Championships in March. A rising senior, Leverenz also placed fifth in the 2011 World Championships last summer.
Slovenia's Sara Isakovic - who won the silver medal in the 200-meter freestyle at the 2008 Olympics - clocked a time of 1:58.47 in Monday night's 200 free semifinals and did not reach the final.
Isakovic and Leverenz helped lead the Bears to the 2011 and 2012 NCAA team titles, with the former ending her college career at this year's national meet in March.
Alumna and New Zealand Olympian Lauren Boyle qualified for but eschewed swimming in the 200 free to focus on the rest of her Olympic schedule, which includes the 800 free (beginning with Aug. 2 preliminary heats) and possibly her country's 800 free relay.
Boyle - who along with Isakovic swam on Cal's first NCAA championship team in 2009 - took eighth place in the 400 free final on July 29 in London.
Three Cal men's rowers were in action on Monday: Elliott Hovey (USA) in the quad sculls, Will Dean (Canada) in the men's four and Olivier Siegelaar (The Netherlands) in the men's eight.
Racing in the repechage of the men's eight, Siegelaar and the Dutch advanced to Wednesday's final, clocking a time of 5:27.98 to place third in the race.
The Netherlands will be joined in the men's eight final by Team USA, which includes coach Mike Teti and coxswain Zach Vlahos.
Dean and the Canadians placed third in their preliminary heat with a time of 5:50.78 to advance to Thursday's semifinals.
Hovey and the Americans failed to advance to the final of the quad sculls after placing fourth in Monday's repechage with a time of 5:45.62.
The lone Cal women's rower competing on Monday, Kara Kohler, advanced to Wednesday's final for the U.S. after crossing the finish line at 6:19.49 in the repechage of the women's quad sculls, good enough for second in the race.
The only Bear rowing on Tuesday will be Julie Nichols in the repechage of the lightweight women's double sculls. Nichols and her partner, Kristin Hedstrom, are coached by Cal women's rowing head coach Dave O'Neill.