Men’s swimming and diving tames Tigers in first meet of winter season

Jan. 11, 2016, 11:35 p.m.

This past Friday, the Stanford men’s swim and dive team defeated the University of Pacific Tigers 134-63 in the first meet of the winter season. The team showed no signs of rust coming off of its month-long break and got things rolling with a strong showing in the non-conference meet.

Patrick Conaton (above
Sophomore Patrick Conaton (above) won the first event, the 800-yard freestyle, of the Cardinal’s meet against Pacific over the weekend, while junior Max Williamson finished second. (HECTOR GARCIA-MOLINA/

“I felt like we accomplished it all,” said head coach Ted Knapp. “There was some really good focus along with some fun. A lot of guys swam off events and we showed great team support and spirit.”

The fun that Knapp mentions occurred due to the inclusion of some unofficial events in the meet. These events, the 50-yard backstroke, 50-yard breaststroke, 150-yard butterfly, 150-yard backstroke, 150-yard breaststroke and 50-yard butterfly, were included in the final point total of the meet but are not raced in formal competitions, such as the NCAA Championship.

The Cardinal started off with a bang, with four Stanford teams finishing before the first Tigers team in the 400-yard medley relay. Sophomore Patrick Conaton and junior Max Williamson took first and second, respectively, in the second event of the meet, the 800-yard freestyle. Next, sophomore Liam Egan, junior Spencer DeShon and senior Danny Thomson combined to sweep the 200-yard freestyle.

The meet continued with more Stanford dominance. Sophomore Andrew Liang won the 50-yard backstroke and sophomore Sam Perry and junior Daniel Le took the top two spots in the 50-yard breaststroke. The 150-yard butterfly was next, and the Cardinal swept this event as well, with junior Jimmy Yoder taking home the win, followed by junior Connor Black and senior Ryan Arata finishing in second and third.

The 50-yard and 100-yard freestyle were next. Senior Sean Duggan won the 50-yard free, giving Stanford an 89-21 lead through the first seven events. DeShon, Yoder and Black finished one-two-three in the 100 freestyle.

The following events were two of the non-official college events, but the Cardinal continued to rule the pool, adding to their lead: Sophomore Andrew Liang took first in the 150-yard backstroke followed by sophomore Curtis Ogren and senior Ryan Arata, while Williamson won the 400-yard freestyle, out-touching Cardinal freshman Brad Zdroik, clinching a Cardinal victory in the meet.

Sophomore Wesley Olmstead would go on to win the 50-yard butterfly before the Cardinal swept the final individual event of the day, the 200-yard individual medley. Duggan came in first, his third win of the day, with senior Jeff Garnier and Conaton picking up the second- and third-place spots.

The Cardinal closed out the meet just as powerfully as they started, with a one-two finish in the 200-yard freestyle relay, finishing the meet 71 points ahead of their opponents.

“As we get back into classes and back into our strength program, this meet is always a good test to see how well we can swim, support teammates, and focus on the small things,” Knapp said.

It seems that the Cardinal passed this test, winning every single event against the Tigers.

Stanford next takes on Arizona State on Friday, Jan. 22 at 1 p.m. in the Avery Aquatic Center. The conference meet will be televised on the Pac-12 Networks.

Contact Selby Sturzenegger at selby ‘at’

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