Feb. 24, 2006
The UCLA swim and dive team continues to stand in third-place after the third day of competition at the Pac-10 Swim and Dive Championships in Federal Way, WA and Long Beach, CA. Arizona still stands in first-place with 889 points, while Stanford is second, only five points ahead of the Bruins, with 842 points.
Senior Kim Vandenberg led the Bruins as she earned All-Conference honors with her third-place finish in the 100 Fly for the second consecutive year. Her time of 53.68 was a season-best and automatic qualifier for the NCAA Championships. Vandenberg also placed fifth in the 200 Free with another season-best, swimming 1:47.19, an NCAA "B" time.
In the 100 Breaststroke, two Bruins made the Championship Final - senior Eileen Seissen and sophomore Nicolette Teo. Both Seissen (1:02.22) and Teo (1:02.33) swam season-best times, improving on their NCAA "B" times to finish sixth and seventh, respectively.
Junior Katie Arnold, the 100 Back co-champion from 2005, did not advance to the championship final and finished ninth overall. However, she did swim a season-best and NCAA automatic time of 53.99 in the A Console.
The 400 Medley Relay team of Arnold, Seissen, Vandenberg and freshman Anna Poteete swam a season-best 3:41.99 to finish fifth overall.
Up in Federal Way, WA, the divers had another solid showing as two Bruins competed in the finals on 3M - senior Paige Thompson and junior Sara Clark. Clark, who had finished fourth on 1M on Thursday, placed fourth on the 3M board, scoring a season-best 318.85 points.
"I'm very pleased and proud of how this group as a whole has competed so far this weekend," said Dive Coach Tom Stebbins. "I'm especially proud of our top-three - Sara, Paige and Marisa. They have done an excellent job and have really led this team."
"Sara is having a break-through meet and is finally letting go of her competition anxiety. She was sensational today and really fun to watch."
Thompson finished sixth on 3M with a score of 293.90, while freshman Marisa Samaniego just missed the finals, finishing ninth overall with a score of 273.00.
"Paige did a great job," added Stebbins. "She really had to battle through some things, but she's done a great job. Marisa has been sensational, and other then one small mistake which kept her out of the final today, she has been great."
"I'm really excited for tomorrow's plaform competition," said Stebbins. "We have four girls competing and Sara and Tess are primed and ready for a good showing."
The Pac-10 Championships conclude on Saturday with the 1650 Freestyle, 200 Back, 100 Free, 200 Breast, 200 Fly and 400 Free Relay. Prelims begin at 11:00 am and final start at 6:00 pm. The Platform competition will also be tomorrow in Federal Way, WA.