LA JOLLA, Calif. - The UC San Diego women's swimming and diving team, ranked No. 3 in the NCAA Division II, edged Division I crosstown rival in a dual meet at Canyonview Pool on Saturday afternoon. The final score was 156.5-143.5.
With the narrow victory in its final home meet of the year, the Tritons conclude their regular-season schedule with an 8-3 dual record. USD fell to 0-6.
For the third time in the last five seasons, the annual meeting between the area foes came down to the final relay race, this time the 400 freestyle. The Tritons headed in with a four-point advantage at 143.5-139.5, with 11 points going to first-place, four to second and two for third, meaning the relay winner would take the meet.
The UCSD foursome of senior Katherine Tse, freshman Colleen Daley, junior Anji Shakya and senior Amber Tan timed 3:28.69 to finish .62 seconds ahead of the top Torero group (3:29.31).
The result snapped a two-meet winless streak for the Tritons against USD. They had won nine straight meetings prior to a 172-122 loss on Nov. 13, 2010, and a rare 149-149 deadlock a season ago.
USD won the 400 free last season on Nov. 12, 2011, with a 2-3 finish for UCSD not enough to prevent the tie. Prior to that on Jan. 17, 2009, the Tritons overturned a seven-point deficit (144-137) with a 1-2 finish in the 400 free relay to steal a dramatic 152-146 road victory.
On Saturday, Shakya and true freshman Naomi Thomas were the brightest stars. Shakya wound up with first-place finishes in all four of her races. In addition to that meet-ending 400 free relay, in which she swam a 51.85 split as the third leg, she touched first individually in the 200 free 1:52.24 and 200 back (2:05.82).
For Shakya, a team co-captain, it marked an incredible sixth straight dual meet in which she achieved multiple individual first-place performances. The Davis native began her day by leading off the victorious 200 medley relay as the backstroke leg in 27.31. She was followed by Mercedes O'Brien, Jaclyn Amog and Tan in 1:46.22, barely ahead of the USD ‘A' relay in 1:46.45.
Thomas, meanwhile, was the other Triton multi-winner, sweeping the butterfly events by going 2:03.11 for a narrow win over USD's Keenan Lineback (2:03.59) in the 200 and then 56.79 to take the 100 by over a second. She also placed third in the 200 IM (2:09.51) to aid in a valuable 1-3-4 UCSD finish and turn a five-point deficit into the four-point edge heading into the last relay.
Other event winners for UCSD were Olivia Fountain in the 100 back (58.49) and fellow senior Beth Dong in the 200 IM (2:07.06) as Tritons took eight of 14 races.
Fountain produced perhaps one of the more exciting finishes of the afternoon, out-touching Torero Sarah Reierson by a mere .04 seconds.
Erika Rodman (10:41.44) and Megan Lee (10:52.33) went 2-3 for the Tritons in the tough 1000 free.
Melissa Andruzzi (100 breast, 200 breast) and Jacquie Kimmel (50 free, 100 free) each won a pair of races for the Toreros, with Kimmel's 100 free only .02 seconds faster (52.65) than Tse (52.67).
The UCSD men's and women's swimming and diving teams will now await the 2013 Pacific Collegiate Swimming & Diving Conference (PCSC) Championships in La Mirada, beginning in 11 days and running from Feb. 13-16. Both Triton squads will look to extend their respective runs of four straight conference crowns leading toward the NCAA Division II Championships in March in Birmingham, Ala.
-- UCSDtritons.com --