With the expectation sky high with the addition of Missy Franklin this year, the Bears finishing only 3rd in the country is a bit of a surprise. To make things worse, Cal was bested by rival Leland Stanford Junior University.
Nevertheless, the Golden Bears still had a strong showing, by most standards.
Bears finish with two titles (152nd individual title in school history and 40th relay title)
- Missy Franklin won 200 Free
- Rachael Acker, Caroline Piehl, Elizabeth Pelton, and Missy Franlin won 800 Free relay
Several Golden Bears are just edged for a title
- Kaylin Bing, Cindy Tran, Missy Franklin, and Farida Osman were runner-ups in 200 Free relay
- Missy Franklin was a runner-up in 500 Free
- Cindy Tran was a runner-up in 100 Back
- Elizabeth Pelton was a runner-up in 200 Back
In 3rd place
- Celina Li in 200 IM
- Missy Franklin in 100 Free
- Kaylin Bing, Rachael Acker, Missy Franlin, and Farida Osman in 400 Free relay
I will have a more thorough recap of the NCAA action early next week (probably Tuesday thanks to the Cal Basketball double-header on Monday). Without the high expectation like the women, maybe the Cal men would fare better next week as they try to improve on their 2nd place finish last year to overtake Michigan.
Tonight's final action will be stream live on ESPN3/WatchESPN (you can watch replay of the action as well).
Live stats can be found here.
The California Golden Bears talks about Day 2.
Did Teri just compared the Bears to Duke Basketball?
My instant reaction from yesterday:
Missy Franklin passed on making an obscene amount of money to experience this:
Bears claimed 2 NCAA titles on Friday night:
- Missy Franklin with an American record of 1:40.31 is the NCAA Champion in 200 Free. Missy opened up a big lead early and her only competition was that imaginary line that was the record.
- The last event of the night was the 800 Free relay. The Cal quartet of Rachael Acker, Caroline Piehl, Elizabeth Pelton, and Missy Franklin are the NCAA Champions. Facing a ~2.5 second deficit to Georgia and slightly behind them Stanfurd, Missy Franklin swam a 200 Free split of 1:40.08 (better than her record just half an hour or so earlier) to allow the Golden Bears to edge Georgia.
NATIONAL CHAMPS! What a relay #thatsewhatImtalkingabout #gobears @franklinmissy cpiehl @rachaelacker @… http://t.co/YbkeMFY6us— Elizabeth Pelton (@eliZAbethP_1126) March 22, 2014
Also on the night, Cal saw their dominance of 100 Back snapped as Cindy Tran was edged by Texas A&M's Paige Miller. Tran has won that event in 2011 and 2012. Cal's Rachel Bootsma who finished 11th this year was the defending champion.
Cal did suffer a major blow to their comeback bid early in the day as they were disqualified in the 200 medley relay during the prelim. A bad exchange between Cindy Tran and Celina Li turned into a false start. This may be a case where all the different potential options available to Cal hurt them. Cindy Tran had been swimming the backstroke portion of the relay (which starts first) but was swapped in this prelim with Rachel Bootsma so that Tran would do Fly and Bootsma do the back.
In the team race, Bears would need a miracle to overtake Georgia on the final day of competition on Saturday. A closer race now is between Cal and Stanfurd for 2nd place. On Saturday, the Bears have good chance at two individual title in 100 Free (can any one beat Missy Franklin?) and 200 Back (Elizabeth Pelton is a favorite but she has not swam well this weeknd). There is also the 400 Free relay, where the dominance of just one swimmer (Franklin) is lessened.
ROLL ON YOU BEARS!
More videos from Friday night: Missy Franklin talks to College Swimming.
Cal also posted a video with a few of its swimming alum in the audience.
Team standing through Day 2 (14 of 21 events)
1. Georgia 369
2. Stanford 297
3. California 285
For casual Cal swimming fans, it is imperative that Cal finish ahead of Stanfurd. Projecting based on the Saturday prelim result, the Bears should be able to do it, but it will be close.
Here are the events for Saturday (and last) night of the 2014 NCAA Women's Swimming and Diving Championship:
1650-yard freestyle (fastest heat)
The only Golden Bear competing in this event is Catherine Breed, via invitation. Georgia's Brittany Maclean is expected to win this. I'm not sure this race is a part of the ESPN3 coverage.
Two Golden Bears qualified to swim for the title here. They are Elizabeth Pelton and Melanie Klaren. Pelton has the second best prelim time and is a threat to win this title. Oh yeah, Pelton only set the American, US, and NCAA record in winning this event last year.
No Georgia Bulldogs or Stanfurd Cardinal are in the A-Final here.
In the B-Final, Hong Kong Calympian Stephanie Au will swim against 1 Dawg and 1 Furd.
Can Missy Franklin win her 2nd individual NCAA title?
Arizona's Margo Greer and Furd's Lia Neal are also serious threat. Also in the A-Final are Furd's Maggie Schaefer and Georgia's Shannon Vreeland.
In the B-Final, Cal's Rachael Acker will race Georgia's Smoliga among other swimmers.
No Golden Bears made the A nor B finals.
For the team race, two Dawgs (Margalis and Zhu) and one Furd (Olsen) are in the A-Final.
If somebody scratches, then Cal's Sophia Batchelor would have a spot in the B-Final.
For the team race, Furd has DiRado (winner of 200 IM and 400 IM already) going for her 3rd title. Georgia has a swimmer in the A-Final (Flickinger) and one in the B-Final (Harrington).
Can Cal's Kahley Rowell make it to the A-Final again? Can she outperform Georgia's Laura Ryan?
400-yard free relay
Cal, Georgia, and Furd are all in the A-Final as expected.
For the prelim, Cal used Kaylin Bing, Caroline Piehl, Camille Cheng, and Missy Franklin. They only got the 5th best prelim time.
From the prelim, Cal got 8 season or career best time from their swimmers. That's always good to hear even if some of those time are not good enough to make a final.
So hopefully, the Golden Bears can finish strong tonight and add to the school's national championship totals for individual events and relays. Next week, we will have coverage of the NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championship (that meet will take place in Austin, Texas). In that, Cal is hoping to compete with Michigan for the team title.