Feb. 23, 2012
FEDERAL WAY, Wash. - California's Liv Jensen defended her 50-yard freestyle final and Caitlin Leverenz set the school record in the 200-yard individual medley on Thursday at the Pac-12 Championships, and the Golden Bears wound up in second place at the end of the second night of the conference meet. Cal has compiled 426.5 points and trails only Stanford (462). USC (390) sits in third place in the nine-team field at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center.
Jensen clocked an automatic NCAA qualifying time of 21.70 to win the sprint, which she won at last year's Pac-10 Championships. The senior also claimed the 50-free crown at the 2010 NCAA Championships. Freshman Kaylin Bing won the consolation final of the 50 free tonight, posting an NCAA B time of 22.51 to take ninth place.
With her swim in the 200 IM in this morning's prelim, Leverenz broke Natalie Coughlin's school record (1:54.95) with a time of 1:54.35. In the evening final, Leverenz broke that record with a blistering time of 1:52.43. USC's Katinka Hosszu, a 2008 Olympian for Hungary, just edged Leverenz in the final with a time of 1:52.37.
"That IM was a world-class swim," Cal head coach Teri McKeever said. "It was Natalie's record. That was pretty phenomenal. Caitlin and Katinka have a great rivalry; they bring out the best in each other. That was a highlight of the evening, and so was Liv doing a great job for us in winning the 50 free."
In the first women's diving event of the meet, senior Molly Hayes was the top Bear, placing sixth in the one-meter springboard final with a score of 276.25. In all, the five Cal divers recorded 63.5 points on the night.
"Catherine and Shelley did well in the 500-free final, and that was a lifetime best for Catherine," McKeever said. "We're excited about Catherine's future. The divers did well for us, with Molly getting in the final and other young ladies scoring points."
"We were not quite as good in the morning as we needed to be; we definitely have to do better," McKeever added. "There were positive moments and moments that showed we have things to work on. Tomorrow's our strongest day, and we've got to do better."
On Friday, the third day of the conference meet will include 11 a.m. prelims in the 400 IM, 100 butterfly, 200 free, 100 breaststroke, 100 backstroke and three-meter springboard. The Friday finals will include all those events plus the 400-medley relay.
2012 Pac-12 Championships
Day 2 Standings
Team Points 1. Stanford 462 2. California 426.5 3. USC 390 4. Arizona 385 5. UCLA 341.5 6. Arizona State 298 7. Utah 233 8. Oregon State 142.5 9. Washington State 134.5
^ NCAA A or automatic qualifying time (swimming)