Photo by: Rick Brotherton
The 2017 PCSC champion UC San Diego Tritons.
On Cloud Nine! Triton Men and Women Both Wrap Up Ninth Successive PCSC Titles
Release: Saturday 02/11/2017 

MONTEREY PARK, Calif. - UC San Diego put the finishing touches Saturday night on ninth consecutive titles in both the men's and women's divisions at the 2017 Pacific Collegiate Swimming and Diving Conference (PCSC) Championships at East Los Angeles College Swim Stadium.

The fourth-ranked UC San Diego women topped the leaderboard with 1601 points, with Fresno Pacific well behind in second (1242.5). The No. 3 men compiled 1684 points, holding off FPU (1589) by 95 points.

The Tritons notched seven more event victories, with six individual to go along with the women's 400 free relay at the end of the final session. They had 19 for the meet.

Senior Gabriel Hernandez completed an incredible trifecta of three wins in three nights, all in school-record marks. On Saturday, he went a meet-record 1:45.11 to touch first in the 200-yard butterfly. He had won the 200 individual medley and 400 IM the past two evenings. Hernandez, a member of the Venezuela national team, lowered 2013 national champion Dane Stassi's previous mark (1:45.12) by a mere .01 seconds. The meet record that he took down also belonged to Stassi from 2013 (1:47.22). Hernandez won the championship final by more than two seconds.

The Tritons totaled three school records over the four-day competition, all by Hernandez, who took home PCSC Male Swimmer of the Meet distinction. Daniel Perdew earned his second straight PCSC Men's Coach of the Meet award, sharing it this year with FPU head coach Josh Christensen.

Among the other Saturday winners were a trio of local products. Freshman Jack Spitser (San Diego/Rancho Bernardo HS) completed his distance double by taking the top spot in the 1650 freestyle (15:54.62). Senior All-American Michael Cohn (Solana Beach/Grossmont College) won a third straight crown in the 200 backstroke (1:45.08), as did junior All-American Julia Toronczak (Santee/West Hills HS) on the women's side in 1:59.84.

Sophomore Garrett Tse was fastest in the 200 breaststroke (1:59.96), with junior Derek Tanizaki-Hudson winning the first-ever PCSC title in the 100 IM, newly added to the program this year.

Tri-captain Haley Murphy, fellow juniors Angie Phetbenjakul and Sarah Yao, and senior anchor Natalie Tang, timed 3:26.10 to win the 400 free relay by just .03 seconds over FPU (3:26.13). Juniors Kevin Wylder and Austin Takeda, freshman Chris Hargrove and Cohn went 3:02.59 for second in their race.

Sophomore Brooke Abrantes (San Diego/Santana HS) was runner-up (260.55 points) in the women's three-meter springboard competition, just ahead of teammates Tiffany Wong (252.30) and Delainey Carlin (226.70).

Tang sprinted to second in 51.26 in the 100 free. Jaimie Bryan (2:15.24) and Phetbenjakul (2:15.89) were 2-3 in the 200 breast. Junior Alex Rodman was third (2:00.55) behind Toronczak in the 200 back. Kaitlyn Ritchey was third in the 1650 (17:12.60), and fellow freshman Brooke Miles was the top Triton in the 100 IM, in second (57.81). Junior Jayna Wittenbrink had a fifth-place effort in the 200 fly.

Junior CJ Pais was runner-up after Cohn in the 200 back (1:49.22), with Yong the same in the 200 breast (2:01.52) after Tse, and freshman Edgar Chin fourth (2:02.29) in the latter. UCSD went 4-5-6-7-8 in the 100 free, led by Takeda in 45.81.

The Tritons will now await the official announcement on Wednesday, Feb. 22, of qualifiers for the 2017 NCAA Division II Championships, which will take place in Birmingham, Ala., March 7-11.


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