March 18, 2011
AUSTIN, Texas - Using a team-first mantra of putting everything into its relays on night two at the NCAA Championships, the Arizona women's swimming and diving team scored 85 points to keep a hold of fifth place in the team standings with a total of 184 pints. California leads with 295 followed by Georgia in second at 274.5. USC is third overall with 253 points and Stanford is fourth with 192.
Arizona, admittedly, did not have its best morning during preliminary events. The team did however qualify for the championship heat in the 200 medley relay and got sophomore Ellyn Baumgardner into the A final of the 100 breaststroke. Freshman Sarah Denninghoff qualified in the 100 back consolation while Alyssa Anderson was in the consolation of the 200 free.
In the 200 medley relay, the team of Denninghoff, Baumgardner, Aubrey Peacock and Kait Flederbach placed in sixth overall with a time of 1:37.09 to garner 26 points. As in the 200 free relay one night before, the Cats' youthful talent was on display with three freshmen and a sophomore comprising the relay. California won the relay title and broke Arizona's three-year old NCAA and American record in the event with a time of 1:35.03.
One year after placing third as a freshman in the 100 breaststroke, the sophomore Baumgardner shaved a tenth off her personal best by swimming a 59.38 to place fifth and give her team 14 points. Annie Chandler's record in the event was thought to be in jeopardy going into finals, but Minnesota's Jillian Tyler couldn't reach the mark with her winning time of 58.39.
In the 200 freestyle, Anderson placed runner-up in the consolation heat with a time of 1:44.28 to nab seven points one night after setting the school record in the 500 freestyle.
Denninghoff, a freshman from Tucson, Ariz., placed third in the consolation heat of the 100 backstroke with a time of 52.47. Arizona picked up six points with Denninghoff's time. In the championship heat, California claimed the top two spots with freshmen Cindy Tran and Deborah Roth taking first and second, respectively to grab 37 points for the Golden Bears.
The Wildcats would save their best for last however as the 800 freestyle relay team of Anderson, Margo Geer, Denninghoff and Drake would all put up solid 200 free relay splits to place third in the event with an overall time of 6:59.20. The time is second in school history only to the 2008 team's record of 6:58.
Heading into day three, Arizona will try and catch Stanford who sits in fourth place overall and preserve its active nation-leading streak of top four finishes. Tomorrow's events include the 1650 freestyle, 200 backstroke, 100 freestyle, 200 breaststroke, 200 butterfly, platform diving and the 400 freestyle relay.
Women - Team Rankings - Through Event 14
1. California - 295
2. Georgia - 274.5
3. USC - 253
4. Stanford - 192
5. Arizona - 184
6. Texas - 172
7. Florida - 149
8. Minnesota - 139
9. Auburn - 127
10. Texas A&M - 124
Night Two Finals Results
200 Medley Relay
6. S. Denninghoff, E. Baumgardner, A. Peacock, K. Flederbach - 1:37.09
5. Ellyn Baumgardner - 59.38
200 Freestyle Consolation
2. Alyssa Anderson - 1:44.28
100 Backstroke Consolation
3. Sarah Denninghoff - 52.36
800 Freestyle Relay
3. Anderson, Geer, Denninghoff, Drake - 6:59.20
Preliminary Results - Day Two
200 Medley Relay
6. S. Denninghoff, E. Baumgardner, D. Christ, K. Flederbach - 1:37.41
39. Dana Christ - 53.86
22. Samantha Pickens - 295.85