Making Waves

    The four-day, 20-event-long Pacific Collegiate Swim Conference Championships concluded on Saturday, Feb. 16. The No. 4-ranked UCSD men finished with an overall score of 1543.5, well ahead of California Baptist University (1357.5) and Fresno Pacific University (1108). Similarly, the No. 3 Triton women finished with 1364.5 points, in front of Cal State East Bay (954), Simon Fraser University (886) and 10 other schools to win their fifth straight league crown.

    The UCSD men and women both took first in the 1650-meter swim event. Junior transfer Erika Rodman took first in the 1650-meter freestyle with a time of 17:10.69, and senior Jeremy Smith touched first for the men at 15:39.26.

    Junior co-captain Anji Shakya took first in the 200-meter freestyle (1:48.24) and 500-yard freestyle early in the competition, before she won the 200-yard backstroke (2:01.35) and was named the tournament MVP.

    The Triton women took a 1-2-3 sweep in the 500-yard freestyle, with Shakya touching first at 4:48.19 and senior Beth Dong following her with a time of 4:59.81. Rodman finished third with a time of 5:00.63, while Shakya’s win broke a 20-year-old record in the 500-yard freestyle.

    “To be breaking a record from 1993 for a non-scholarship Division-II program — that’s incredible,” UCSD head coach Matt Macedo said.

    The men followed suit by sweeping their 500-yard freestyle with Smith finishing first in 4:28.30, freshman Chin Hao Chang touching second at 4:30.83, followed by freshman Paul Li at 4:31.26.

    Senior Olivia Fountain took first in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 23.51, followed by fellow senior Katherine Tse (23.60). In the men’s 50-yard freestyle, the Tritons went 2–3, with juniors Nick Korth finishing at 20.60 and Reid McCallum taking third (20.63).

    Freshman Rosa Bebi (2:20.04), senior Casey Adams (2:20.48) and sophomore Eva Chen (2:20.92) also went 2-4-5 in the 200-yard breaststroke.

    In the men’s 100-yard butterfly, senior Adam Yen took first with a time of 49.09, followed by sophomore teammate Dane Stassi in third with a time of 49.54.

    Freshman Naomi Thomas won her first individual conference title in the 200-yard butterfly with a time of 2:01.53, with freshman Dari Watkins following her in third (2:04.23). Thomas also finished second in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 56.02.

    Korth defended his back-to-back titles in the 200-yard breaststroke with a first-place finish of 1:57.49, falling just .02 seconds short of besting his own meet record of 1:57.47 from last year’s PCSC.

    “We’ve got a lot of history in that we’re going on many years of being conference champions,” Macedo said.

    Stassi followed Korth by winning the 200-yard butterfly with a meet record of 1:47.22, just ahead of senior teammate Adam Rice in 1:50.63, with Yen completing a 1-2-3 Triton sweep in 1:51.36.

    Stassi’s time also lowered the 1:47.53 set by former UCSD standout Kurt Boehm in 2005.

    Rice’s sweep of individual medley events early in the week earned him MVP honors. Rice took first in the 200-yard individual medley (1:50.24) as well as in the 400-yard IM (3:57.67) to earn his way to the NCAAs. Fellow teammate and freshman Kyle Nadler finished in third with a time of 4:01.08. Coach Macedo noted the increasing strength of the conference with challenges in taking first in the relays.

    On the men’s side, senior Julius Espiritu, Korth, Stassi and McCallum raced together to win the 200-yard medley relay with a time of 1:29.48.

    Espiritu, Korth, senior Adam Yen and junior Alex Merrill also finished first in the 400-yard medley relay with a time of 3:17.20. The Triton men’s group of sophomore Jack Galvan, freshman Ethan Pham, Espiritu and Merrill took second in the 200-yard freestyle relay with a time of 1:22.70.

    Galvin, McCallum, Stassi and Espiritu also finished the 400-yard freestyle relay in second, with a time of 3:02. Both the men and women Tritons took home first in the 800-yard freestyle relay, with the team of Rice, freshman Michael Leung, Li and Merrill finishing at 6:37.67, and sophomore Sierra Robbins, Dong, Watkins and Shakya took first as a group with a time of 7:26.45 for the women.

    In the 200-yard freestyle relay, the UCSD group of Fountain, Tse, freshman Colleen Daley, and Robbins finished first with a time of 1:33.65. Robbins, Tse, senior Amber Tan and Daley also finished second as a group in the 400-yard freestyle relay with a time of 3:27.79. The Tritons also took second in the 400-yard medley relay with junior Sandy Hon, Chen, Dong and Shakya racing to finish in 3:49.07.

    “The relays were definitely all very exciting,” Macedo said. “That’s the best way to get your athletes to the NCAAs. When you qualify in a relay, it gets four athletes to the meet. So a lot of those relays really meant a lot to us, and a lot of them came very close, especially on the men’s side.”?At the PCSC, the UCSD diving team also fared favorably. UCSD diving coach Michelle Casillas was named Female Dive Coach of the Year.

    Senior Tyler Runsten placed first in the one-meter dive (313.30) and the three-meter dive (339.30), with junior Luke Calkins taking second with a score of 288.45. Freshman Allyson Cohen placed third in the women’s three-meter dive with 211.80 points.

    The Tritons look forward to competing in the 2013 NCAA Division-II Championships in Birmingham, Ala. March 6 to March 9.

    “On the men’s side, [the NCAAs are] going to be a dogfight — it’s not going to be easy. We were seventh my first two years here, and then the last two years, we got second, so there is a lot of expectation for us,” Macedo said.

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