No. 5 USC Topples No. 1 Cal, 180.5-119.5
Jan. 31, 2014
Senior Kasey Carlson, sophomore Kendyl Stewart and freshman Chelsea Chenault won two events apiece to lead the No. 5 USC women's swimming and diving team to an upset of No. 1 California, 180.5-119.5, in a Pac-12 dual meet at the nearly completed Uytengsu Aquatics Center at USC on Friday (Jan. 31).
The Trojan women improved to 6-0 overall, 5-0 in the Pac-12 while the top-ranked Bears dropped to 6-1, 4-1. It is USC's second win in a row over the Bears.
"We kind of exceeded our expectations a bit today," USC Coach Dave Salo said. "Cal's got a little more of a talent base than we have but the girls did a great job of stepping up. Our focus was to come in with specific individual goals for each event they swam versus a specific strategy to win the meet.
"It was less focus on winning and more preparing for the NCAAs by fine-tuning details. We said let the points fall where they may and it turned out pretty well. Cal is a great team and I'm really proud of our girls."
With both teams building toward the postseason, the times weren't as fast as where they were in December or where they will be in March, but the mid-season racing was still hard fought.
Action started with a Trojan win in the 200y medley relay as the quartet of sophomore Joanna Stenkvist, Carlson and sophomores Kendyl Stewart and Kasia Wilk touched in 1:39.26. Cal took second in 1:40.61.
Cal freshman and swimming star Missy Franklin kicked off the individual schedule with a close win in the 1000y free, touching in 9:47.44. Trojan senior Meghan Hawthorne, improved in the distance events this year, just missed reeling her in and got to the wall in 9:47.70 for second.
The Trojans got their first individual win in the 200y free as Chenault (1:46.84) and senior Stina Gardell (1:48.92) went 1-2 while Cal's Camille Cheng took third (1:49.00).
Stewart then came from behind to win the 100y back in 53.34, passing Cal's Stephanie Au in the final 50y. Au took second in 53.81 and her teammate Cindy Tran touched third (54.29).
Sophomore Jasmine Tosky held off Cal's Celina Li to win the 200y fly, 1:58.00 to 1:58.62 with Trojan freshman Maggie D'Innocenzo third (2:00.27). Sophomore Kasia Wilk powered through the 50y free in 22.89, outpacing Cal's Farida Osman (23.18). Trojan freshman Evan Swenson and Cal's Kaylin Bing tied for third (23.32).
Cal's Anne Kastler won the 1-meter springboard competed earlier today at UCLA with 285.05 points while Trojan junior Haley Ishimatsu took second (268.25). On 3-meter, USC sophomore Natalie Kalibat claimed first with 302.50, edging sophomore teammate Sam Adams (299.35). Ishimatsu was fourth (284.10).
Carlson doubled up in the 100y free, beating Franklin to the wall, 49.24 to 49.75. Wilk touched third in 50.46. Carlson entered the event with the NCAA's top time in the event while Franklin was third.
Cal's Elizabeth Pelton, the defending NCAA champ in the 200y back, won the race Friday in 1:57.00, edging Stenkvist at the wall. Au was third in 1:58.72.
Gardell won the 200y breast in 2:12.55 with Kropp following closely in second in 2:13.41. Li was third in 2:15.99.
Franklin appeared on her way to another win in the 500y free, but Chenault started to close with 75 yards to go and passed Franklin with less than 50 left. Chenault went on to win in 4:46.88 while Franklin took second in 4:47.14. Trojan senior Lynette Lim was third in 4:53.29.
Stewart won her second race with a 53.74 in the 100y fly while Hawthorne took second in 55.43. Tran touched third (55.44).
Li won Cal's fourth swimming event with a 1:58.93 in the 200y IM, beating Gardell (1:59.11) to the wall. Tosky was third (2:02.78).
USC closed the meet as it started it, with a relay win as the quartet of Carlson, Chenault, Wilk and Swenson won in 3:19.89 to Cal's 3:21.03.
The Trojans will host unbeaten and fourth-ranked Stanford on Saturday at 12 p.m. The Cardinal improved to 8-0, 5-0 with a win over UCLA in Westwood today.