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SWIMMING / PACIFIC 10 CHAMPIONSHIPS : Stanford Takes Command; UCLA Second, USC Third


It was an image that typified Stanford's dominance of the Pacific 10 Conference men's swimming championships Thursday night at the Belmont Plaza Pool in Long Beach:

Five of the six men who took their marks for the finals of the 200-yard individual medley wore the red of the Cardinal. The only other finalist was from USC.

Stanford won four of five swimming events, including the 200 IM, to take a commanding lead on the first of three nights of competition with 307 points. UCLA was second with 188 points and USC, boosted by Brian Earley's sweep of all three diving events last week, was third with 164 points.

But it is clear that the team race is for second place.

Stanford, the two-time defending NCAA champion, is looking for its 13th consecutive Pac-10 title.

Stanford Coach Skip Kenney is using the meet to build momentum for the NCAA championships.

Stanford looked confident in winning the 400 medley relay in a meet-record 3 minutes 11.93 seconds. In that race, leadoff swimmer Derek Weatherford swam his 100-backstroke leg in 47.14, the fastest time in the nation this season in the 100 backstroke.

Stanford's B squad finished second in the event in 3:15.05.

In other events, Weatherford, the defending NCAA champion in the 100 backstroke, won the 200 IM in 1:45.81 seconds.

The only event Stanford did not win was the 500 freestyle, which Arizona's Chad Carvin won in 4:20.62, edging USC freshman Kent Johnson by 0.66 seconds.

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