STANFORD, Calif. – Stanford’s women’s swimming and diving team, ranked No. 4 in the country, defeated No. 10 Arizona, 158-137, in the Cardinal’s first meet at Avery Aquatics Center since November. Felicia Lee and Katie Olsen each won two individual events to lead Stanford and Maya DiRado would have been a double-winner had she not swam her final race as an exhibition.
"Any time there is a Pac-12 opponent it is a heightened environment and I think the team gets more excited," said head coach Greg Meehan. "It also helped that we were in our home pool. We haven't been here in a while."
Stanford got off to a quick start by winning five of the first six events of the meet to take a commanding lead at the first break. The Cardinal’s 400 medley relay team started things with a win and Arizona’s Bonnie Brandon won the 1,000 free, before Stanford captured the next five events.
Lia Neal (200 free, 1:47.06), Lee (100 back, 53.68), Olsen (100 breast, 1:00.41), DiRado (200 fly, 1:57.40) and Maddy Schaefer (50 free, 22.24) all won during the run.
Schaefer won the showdown between the nation’s two best 50 freestylers, as her and Arizona’s Geer own the best time in the country to date (21.78). Schaefer was 0.61 better than the Wildcats’ senior today (22.24 to 22.85).
"Regardless of the times, being forced to race someone of Margo's caliber is great," Meehan explained. "She's absolutely a sensational swimmer; she's the defending champion in both the 50 and 100. It was a great environment for those two to go at each other."
Geer followed up the second-place effort by ending Stanford’s run with a victory in the 100 free (49.26), this time .08 ahead of Schaefer. Neal was close behind in third, stopping the clock at 49.52.
Next, Brandon made it two in a row for the Wildcats by slipping past Annemarie Thayer in the 200 breast, 1:57.06 to 1:57.35. Along with Thayer in second, Stanford also held the third and fourth spots in that event with Tara Halsted (1:58.26) and Grace Carlson (2:00.97), before Olsen became a double winner. Olsen was first in the 200 breast by touching the wall in 2:11.96, only .07 off of her season best.
After Lee placed at the top in the 100 fly (53.36) and Nicole Stafford was third (54.79), Stanford had clinched the win.
With the outcome confirmed, the Cardinal swam the final two events as exhibitions. DiRado and Andie Taylor were the fastest in the 400 IM and the ‘A’ 200 free relay squad would have been second.
Stephanie Phipps shined off of the diving boards, finishing first in the three-meter and second in the one-meter. Her three-meter score was more than 30 points better than the second-place finisher. Sloane Brazina was third in the three-meter and fourth in the one-meter.
Brandon finished with three wins for Arizona.
Stanford has a quick turnaround as Arizona State visits tomorrow. The dual at Avery Aquatics Center will begin at noon.