Train, sleep, eat, rest, recover.
These are the five pillars of focus head coach David Durden instills in every member of Cal men’s swim and dive. For Durden, how his team manages what they do outside the pool is just as — if not more important — than what they do within it.
“How they’re managing their day, how they’re managing their rest, how they’re managing their recovery, how they’re managing their nutrition. Those are all things that we have a level of expectation that they are handling without us being there telling them exactly what to do,” Durden said.
And it seems to be paying off.
On Saturday, the Bears said farewell to their seniors as they shattered four pool records at UC Berkeley’s very own Spieker Aquatics Complex to claim victory over No.13 Arizona State. Sophomore Reece Whitley stole the spotlight as he helped to set three of the four new pool records in the 100-yard breaststroke, 200-yard breaststroke and 200-yard medley relay.
In the 200 breast, Whitley touched the wall at 1:53.65, well before the previous record of 1:56.22, which had been held since 2005 by Stanford’s Gary Marshall. Whitley also shaved .15 seconds off the previous 100 breast pool record of 52.92 and .47 seconds off the previous 200 medley pool record of 1:25.61, alongside senior Pawel Sendyk, senior Michael Jensen and junior Daniel Carr.
“Today was, I mean, today’s senior day … I love each and every one of our nine seniors, and you know, Coach Durden told us before that today was, no matter who you are, just put out your best performance to send these boys out the right way, so that’s what I wanted to do today. I didn’t really have any goals in mind. We’re in a pretty deep hole right now in terms of training. I mean, we came off of a pretty long camp at OTC and didn’t really slow down when we got back to Berkeley. But still, really great times for all of us so I just wanted to send out the seniors the right way,” Whitley said.
Redshirt sophomore Hugo Gonzalez set the fourth pool record in the 400-yard individual medley, finishing his swim more than four seconds faster than the previous record of 3:48.74. Junior Trenton Julian also had some impressive swims. Julian easily swept the rest of his pool in the 500 and 100-yard freestyle, winning the 500 free in 4:20.85, nearly eight seconds faster than his teammate, freshman Calvin David, and the 1000-yard freestyle in 9:03.65, over six seconds faster than David.
Senior diver Connor Callahan, who received an NCAA Zone Championship qualifying score in the 1-meter event the previous weekend ended his final home meet with another qualifying score in the 3-meter. Callahan scored 324.75 points, just above the NCAA Zone Championship required score of 320. He also posted a season best score of 309.00 points in the 1-meter.
On Friday, the Bears also swam to victory over No.11 Arizona, scoring 166 points to the Wildcats’ 123. Julian, Gonzalez, senior Zheng Wen Quah and junior Ryan Hoffer cinched two wins each, and Carr secured the teams’ ninth individual win.
Moving forward, the Bears will have two weeks to rest and recover before heading out to Southern California, where the team will split up for two dual meets at UC San Diego and USC.
Amber Fang covers men’s swim & dive. Contact her at