Last Saturday, Stanford proved why swimming is truly a team sport.
The No. 1 Cal women’s swim team returned home with a 167-133 loss to No. 4 Stanford (10-0) this past weekend, marking the end of the dual-meet season.
The Bears (7-2) started off strong, as opposed to their matchup against No. 5 USC two weeks ago, with freshman Missy Franklin edging ahead of Stanford’s Andie Taylor to take first place in the 1000-free with a time of 9:53.81. Cal also managed to snag third and fourth place, with Catherine Breed at 10:06.18 and Melanie Klaren at 10:01.79, respectively.
Franklin went on to win two other events, one of which was the 200-free, in which she is currently ranked No. 1 in the country. She beat out Stanford’s Lia Neal, who is ranked third in the country in the 200-free. Franklin also claimed the 100-free in a close race, beating Stanford’s Maddy Shaefer and Neal, who finished second and third, respectively.
But Franklin’s wins alone were not enough for Cal to pull ahead of Stanford, and the rest of the day was spent with the Cardinals just out-touching the Bears in several close races.
While Cal’s Elizabeth Pelton took first in the 200-back by touching the wall in 1:55.35, she was also just out-touched in the 100 back by Stanford’s Felicia Lee, 53.02 to 53.04.
Stanford edged the Bears in the 200 medley by only .07 seconds, with Cal’s Cindy Tran, Yvette Kong, Farida Osman and Kaylin Bing finishing second with a time of 1:39.23. The Cardinal went on to finish first and second place in the 100-breast, with Cal’s Kong taking third place in the event.
Following the theme of the day, another close race ensued between Stanford’s Maya DiRado and Cal’s Celina Li in the 200-fly. DiRado out-touched Li, 1:57.85 to 1:58.10. The 50-free was also claimed by the Cardinal, with Shaefer and Neal taking first and second, respectively, followed by the Bears’ Bing in third.
“There were a lot of close races, which I’m really proud of, but unfortunately, we didn’t end up on top of too many of them,” said Cal head coach Teri McKeever. “A couple of those go the other way, and I think it’s a different outcome.”
Cal was not able to regain the lead as the Cardinal won the remaining races, with first- and second-place finishes in the 200-breast. Stanford also placed first and second in the 500-free, further cementing its lead over the Bears.
Stanford finished off the meet with a first-place finish in the 400-free relay, beating the Cal foursome of Acker, Rachel Bootsma, Bing and Franklin, 3:18.06 to 3:19.28.
“I think this team is a much better championship team than it is a dual-meet team,” McKeever said. “A lot of our strengths are in the same area, which doesn’t always help you in a dual-meet situation.”