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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    W-swim earns 3rd straight Pac-10 title

    Another week, another piece of history for Arizona’s swimming program.

    The No. 4 women tallied 1,501 points, edging second place Stanford by 29 points, to win its third straight Pacific 10 Conference Championships at the Belmont Olympic Plaza in Long Beach, Calif.

    The Wildcats defended their Pac-10 title to become the second school ever to three-peat as Pac-10 champs.

    Arizona now has four Pac-10 titles to its credit, second all-time behind Stanford’s 16 – which won 13 straight titles from 1987-1999.

    “”Lots of great stuff happened and I’m very pleased with the team’s effort,”” said UA head swimming coach Frank Busch. “”We were going up against teams that were ready, and we weren’t quite as ready, but it’s nice to know we were deep enough to (win).””

    As the case has been all season, Arizona’s relay teams keyed the team’s success by winning three of the five relay events – the 400- and 200-yard medleys and 200-yard freestyle – and taking second in the 400-yard freestyle and fourth in the 800-yard freestyle events.

    The 200-yard relay team of juniors Annie Chandler, Lara Jackson and Anna Turner and sophomore Hailey DeGolia set a meet record in the event with a time of 1:36.57 during the first day of competition. The 400-yard freestyle relay was the final event of the four-day competition. Senior Lacey Nymeyer, junior Taylor Baughman, sophomore Justine Schluntz and freshman Katherine Raatz finished just ahead of Stanford to clinch the championship.

    “”When we really had to step up and score points (at the end of the meet) we saw people swim races and compete at a higher level than they would have normally,”” Nymeyer said. “”I think that says lot about our competitive spirit and our closeness as a group of girls.””

    Some strong individual Wildcat performances included Nymeyer’s win in the 100-yard freestyle and Jackson’s defense of her 50-yard freestyle title. The 100-yard backstroke was also a strong event for the Wildcats as DeGolia took second, Schluntz third, sophomore Ana Agy fourth and sophomore Andrea Boritzke sixth.

    The Wildcats have three weeks to rest before the NCAA championships in Columbus, Ohio and Busch expects the good results to continue.

    “”They just seemed to rise to the occasion (in the Pac-10s),”” Busch said. “”It seems like when the opportunity comes to race they’re ready to go. The bigger the stakes are, the better they like it.””

    Into the diving well

    The diving team added points toward the conference title as freshman Carly Smith won the 10-meter platform diving competition at the Weyerhauser King County Aquatic Center in Seattle.

    “”To become a Pac-10 champ in your freshman year is really hard to do,”” said UA head dive coach Michele Mitchell. “”There’s a lot of other divers that have a lot more experience.””

    Freshman Ben Grado earned points for the men – the men’s Pac-10 swim championships start Wednesday in Long Beach – and added to his third-place finish in the 3-meter springboard with a second place in the 1m springboard and a fifth place finish on the platform, while senior Matt Bisordi took fifth in the 3m springboard and eighth on platform.

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