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Golden Medals: Cal swim continues to dominate; W. Water Polo has perfect start

Neither men’s nor women’s tennis advanced out of the ITA kickoff weekend

Golden Bears started the 2019 season with several close victories
Cal Women’s Water Polo Twitter

We’re back to the season where there may be too many sports going on. Rick had a nice recap of the Cal Rugby dominance from their home opener last weekend. I will also save some of the information from the recent Cal Baseball presser for a future piece.

Cal Women’s Water Polo starts the year 3-0

Some of the concerns about where Cal Women’s Water Polo will find scoring this season were answered in the season opening Cal Cup last weekend. Bears graduated Dora Antal and Anna Illes meaning that they will have to rely more on Emma Wright. However, the Bears passed an even harder test last weekend by playing without Wright, who was with the Canadian National Team at the UANA Cup in San Paolo, Brazil.

The Golden Bears finished the weekend with 3 official close wins and an exhibition win against UCLA (not sure what to read into that). Sophomore Elli Protopapas and senior Sarah Siepker each scored 7 goals. Dutch sophomore center Kitty Lynn Joustra had 6 goals. Another dutch sophomore in Brigit Mulder scored 5 goals as 12 different Bears have recorded a goal after the first 3 matches.

Sarah Siepker had a hat trick to lead the way for the Bears in a 14-10 win over Fresno State.

UC Davis managed to tie things up at 10-all late in the 3rd quarter, but the Golden Bears answered with 3 goals to again take control and win 13-11. Brigid Mulder scored 4 goals in this one.

Bears dominated in the 1 meter line in this one against Long Beach State. 49ers was within one goal with 5+ minutes left but the Golden Bears would maintain that lead to finish the weekend 3-0 thanks to the 11-9 victory.

This weekend, the action moves south to The Farm where the 4th ranked Bears will face more ranked opponents in No.19 Indiana, No.8 Pacific, and No.2 Stanford.

Cal Men’s Swimming split squad dominates in both Arizona and UCSD

Cal men’s swimming continue to dominate with a pair of wins in the desert. Bears won 178-118 at ASU then 164-127 at Arizona.

At ASU, Bears won every individual event except for one with sophomore Trenton Julien winning both 500 Free and 1000 Free and freshman Reece Whitley winning both 100 Breast and 200 Breast.

At Arizona, senior Andrew Seliskar won 200 Fly and 500 Free while sophomore Daniel Carr won both backstroke events (which earned him the Pac-12 Swimmer of the Week honor).

Bears also dominated with the swimmers that went to the UC San Diego Invitational - winning Chris Jhong (1000 Free), Nate Biondi (50 Free), Jack Xie (200 Fly), Andy Song (100 Back), Ken Takahashi (also 100 Back - it was a tie) all winning events on Saturday. Bears also swept all the Sunday events with Andy Song (200 Back), Chris Jhong (400 IM), Ken Takahashi (500 Free) all winning.

Bears next wait until February 8th when they host USC at Spieker.

Cal Women’s Swimming dominated in the desert

Cal women also had an easy time in defeating ASU 190-110 and Arizona 179-118 in dual meet last weekend.

Bears won 12 of 16 events at ASU, led by Amy Bilquist winning 3 (100 back, 200 back, 50 free) and Katie McLaughin (200 Fly, 500 Free) and Abbey Weitzeil (100 Free and 200 Free) each winning 2. In her Cal debut freshman Isabel Ivey won 100 Fly.

At Arizona, McLaughlin won 3 events (200 Free, 100 Free, 100 Fly) to secure her the Pac-12 Swimmer of the Week honor. Amy Bilquist (100 Back, 200 Back) and Sarah Darcel (200 Breast, 400 IM) also won 2 events each. Ivey added 3 2nd place finishes in this one.

Golden Bears host USC this afternoon and UCLA on Saturday afternoon from Spieker.

Cal Men’s Gymnastics

The 3rd week of competition saw the 9th ranked Cal Men’s Gymnastics setting a lot of career best across the board. Bears may have lost again to Stanford 395.4 to 417.8, but they set the 10 career highs with the cameras of Pac-12 networks present (AKA we have a lot of routines on Twitter).

Here are some highlights:

You don’t need to really know gymnastics to appreciate these maneuvers.

Bears will face Stanford yet again along with ASU and Washington from Tempe this weekend.

Cal Women’s Gymnastics can’t recover from bad bars

When only 2 of the first 6 events were hits, you knew that Cal Women’s Gymnastics will probably not beat host Arizona. While Golden Bears did their best to recover after a horrific starts (first 4 bar routines were all misses), they suffered their first loss of the season to the Wildcats.

Bears did win all 3 of the other apparatus but it was not enough.

Still, there were some highlight from the meet such as freshman Milan Clausi setting career bests and earning the Pac-12 Freshman of the Week honor.

Bears should have a much better meet this weekend when they host ASU and BYU from the friendly confines of Haas.

Cal Women’s Tennis out of ITA Indoors

Golden Bears will not be making a trip to the ITA Indoors Final 16 in 2019 after falling in the first round 4-1 to host South Carolina. A week after upsetting Florida 4-3 from Gainesville, Golden Bears can’t muster the same magic at the Gamecocks.

Bears did bounce back and beat ASU 4-1 (after also losing the doubles point) to conclude the weekend. In the latest ITA team rankings, Cal is one of the programs outside the top 25 that is still receiving votes.

Rain has postponed this week’s action for Cal Women’s Tennis.

Cal Men’s Tennis lost to Virginia to be eliminated from ITA Indoors

Cal men’s tennis also won’t be advancing to the ITA Indoors final 16. Bears drop to perennial powerhouse UVA 4-2 in the opening round.

Bears then bounced back to beat Western Michigan in consolation.

Cal also announced the following schedule change:

Bears are supposed to play the LA schools in LA this weekend in the non-Pac-12 contests of the season.

Cal Softball receiving votes in preseason polls

I am slightly surprised that Cal is not in the top 25, I guess polls have to penalize Cal for graduating Jazmyn Jackson. Golden Bears will have experience back inside the circle with seniors Zoe Conley and Kamalani Dung back. The lineup will also still have Lindsay Rood back to leadoff. Bradie Fillmore apparently has left the team since she’s no longer listed on the roster in addition to the graduation of the solid Kobie Pettis - Diane Ninemire will have to fill at least 3 holes in her lineup for 2019.

The Cal softball season will start February 9th from Louisiana.