Manuel, Stanford end Pac-12 swim meet with a flourish


Stanford's Simone Manuel took a spot in the Pac-12 Conference record books from Olympic gold medalist Missy Franklin in the morning, and then pushed another Olympic gold medalist, Natalie Coughlin, from the top spot in the afternoon.

Just another typical swimming meet for the freshmen, who has beaten Franklin (and lost to her) in head-to-head battles over the past year in several short-course and long-course freestyle races.

The Cardinal finished second in the Pac-12 Conference Championships at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way, Wash. on Saturday with 1,401 points. California defended its title with 1,629 1/2 points. USC was third with 1,109.

After lowering Franklin's 100 free meet record of 47.17 in the morning with a 47.01, Manuel flew to a 46.70 in the finals, improving her meet record and brushing aside Natalie Coughlin's 2002 Pac-12 record of 47.00.

Manuel missed the NCAA record by .09. With teammate Lia Neal, who finished second in 47.16, pushing her through the NCAA meet, Manuel will likely get a shot at the NCAA mark on a bigger stage: the national championship in Greensboro, N.C. The meet begins March 19.

Stanford finished the meet with a flourish, winning the 400 free relay in a meet record 3:10.69. Neal, Janet Hu, Sacred Heart Prep grad Ally Howe and Manuel were responsible for erasing Cal's 2009 record swim of 3:11.05.

"The morning was up and down for us, but the night was fantastic," Stanford coach Greg Meehan said. " Simone and Lia were electric in the 100 free, Lilly Hinrichs had a stellar performance on platform and we ended the session as best as possible."

Hinrichs finished second in platform diving, accumulating a score of 324.30. Stanford had a diver place among the top three in each of the three events, including Alex Clay's 3-meter title and Kassidy Cook's third-place showing in the 1-meter event.

The Cardinal had several swimmers in championship finals, including Howe's fourth-place finish (1:53.80) in the 200 back.

Katie Olsen finished second in the 200 breast with a time of 2:09.36, just ahead of teammate Sarah Haase (2:09.94), who won the 100 breast title Friday. Heidi Poppe placed seventh in 2:11.81.

Hu and Lindsey Engel swam in the 200 fly final, with Hu placing fifth (1:56.42) and Engel touching in seventh (1:57.12). Allison Brown completed the 1,650 free (16:31.18) in sixth place.

Men's diving

Once again, Kristian Ipsen etched his name into the Stanford record books.

The All-American diver was first in the platform event Saturday at the Pac-12 Conference Men's Diving Championships held at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center, his third title in as many days at the league meet.

Ipsen became the Cardinal's fourth platform diving champion at the Pac-12 meet and only the second Stanford performer ever to sweep all three events at the showdown, joining Matt Frawley (1988).

The title marked Ipsen's sixth overall win at the Pac-12 meet, his first platform.

Ipsen's 434.05 in the finals was more than enough to finish on top of Arizona's Rafael Quintero (403.50).

Cardinal teammate Ted Miclau (360.35) was fifth in his platform debut at the meet and Bradley Christensen (302.60) claimed eighth in the finals.

In the prelims, Tarek Abdelghany (294.40) placed 13th.

— Palo Alto Online Sports/Stanford Athletics

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