March 18, 2004
College Station, TX - At the conclusion of the first day of action at the 2004 NCAA Swimming & Diving Championships, held at Texas A&M's Student Rec. Center Natatorium, the UCLA Bruins stand in sixth place with 75 points. Defending champion Auburn leads the way with 188 points, followed by Georgia with 135 points. Arizona stands in third place with 86 points, followed by Florida (fourth, 84 points) and Stanford (fifth, 82 points).
In the first night of finals action, four UCLA short course meters school records were broken. The Bruins set records in the 200m Free Relay, 400m Free, 50m Free and 400m Medley Relay.
In the 200m Free Relay, the Bruin team of freshman Katie Arnold, senior Malin Svahnstrom, freshman Amy Thurman and senior Sara Platzer placed sixth in a school record breaking 1:41.18. Arnold swam 26.04, Svahnstrom's split time was 25.19, Thurman swam 25.54 and Platzer brought it home in a split of 24.41. Earlier in the day, the Bruins established the previous school record of 1:41.65. Georgia won the 2004 200m Free Relay title in an American, world and NCAA record time of 1:37.27.
In the 400m Free, freshman Katie Nelson finished 13th in 4:09.55, breaking her school record of 4:09.88 set during this morning's preliminary. Arizona's Emily Mason won the title in a NCAA record setting time of 4:06.56. In the 200m IM, Svahnstrom placed eighth in 2:13.74. USC's Kaitlin Sandeno won in a NCAA record time of 2:08.11.
Platzer was the highest placing Bruin of the day. She finished third in the 50m Free in a school record 24.68. Earlier today, she set the school record at 24.80. Georgia's Kara Lynn Joyce won the title in 24.24.
In the 400m Medley Relay, the Bruins once again set a school record. The team of Arnold, senior Leslie Hovsepian, sophomore Kim Vandenberg and Platzer placed ninth in 4:03.37. Arnold swam the backstroke leg in 1:00.54, Hovsepian's breaststroke timed in at 1:09.53, Vandenberg swam the Fly in 59.50 and Platzer anchored the Freestyle leg in 53.80. Georgia won its second relay title of the meet in a NCAA record time of 3:56.48.
All of the Bruins received All-America recognition with today's performances. The NCAA Championships will continue tomorrow. Prelims begin at 11:00 AM CST/9:00 AM PST, finals commence at 7:00 PM CST/5:00 PM PST. The NCAA Championships will conclude on Saturday, March 20.