Ryan Hoffer and an accomplished senior class led the way as the Cal men won their fourth consecutive Pac-12 Swimming and Diving Championship on Wednesday night at Houston.
Hoffer was named Pac-12 Swimmer of the Meet for the second straight year after winning his three individual races and contributing to four relay victories.
Eight seniors completed a perfect four-year run, sweeping to one ore Pac-12 crown.
The Bears won a program-record 17 events — out of a total of 18 — to prevail decisively, scoring 970 points to 788 for runner-up Stanford.
Cal’s victory on the men’s side comes less than a week after the Bears captured the Pac-12 women’s swim championship.
Coach Dave Durden has guided the Bears to six Pac-12 titles ver the past nine seasons. Cal has won a total of eight conference crowns since 1980 (1980, ’81, 2011, ’12, ’18, ’19, ’20, ’21).
Hoffer won the 50-yard freestele on Monday, 100 butterfly on Tuesday, then captured the 100 free in 41.57 seconds. He swam on Cal’s winning relay squads in the 400 medley, 200 free, 200 medley and 400 free relay events.
Over four seasons, Hoffer won 18 Pac-12 titles, including the 50 free, 100 free and 100 fly the past two years.
Senior Zach Yeadon got things started for Cal by setting with a Pac-12 Championship-record in the 1650 free (14:33.69). The Bears then swept the top six spots in the 200 backstroke, led by freshman Destin Lasco (1:38.13).
After Hoffer’s win in the 100 free (in the second-fastest time in the country this season), junior Reece Whitley won the 200 breast (1:48.86) in a championship record to go with his title in the 100 breast.
Senior Trenton Julian won the final individual race of the meet, set Cal and Pac-12 records in the 200 butterfly (1:38.53). His mark was the nation’s fastest and the third-fastest ever in the event.
Cal wrapped up its championship week with Daniel Carr, Björn Seeliger, Lasco and Hoffer winning the 400 free relay (2:48.66) by nearly 2.5 seconds. The Bears’ sweep of the five relays matched their performance in 2019 — the only two times that’s happened over the past 25 years.
Cal returns to the pool March 24-27 for the NCAA championships at the Greensboro Aquatic Center in North Carolina.
The Bears are the reigning champs, having won the national title in 2019 before the 2020 meet was wiped out by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Follow Jeff Faraudo of Cal Sports Report on Twitter: @jefffaraudo