Caverly Wins 200 Breast Over Beard; Neethling Wins Third Title On Day Three

LOS ANGELES - Kristen Caverly, 13, of Irvine Novaquatics defeated Olympic gold medalist and club teammate Amanda Beard, 16, in the 200m breaststroke and Arizona's Ryk Neethling won his third title on the third day of the 5th annual Janet Evans Invitational on Saturday (July 25) at the USC McDonald's Swim Stadium in the meet hosted by USC and presented by Speedo.

Caverly won the 200m breast in 2:33.46, though she actually set a personal best in the preliminaries in 2:32.89. She led the final wire-to-wire, holding off the second-place Beard (2:35.87).

Arizona NCAA champion Ryk Neethling of Hillenbrand (Tucson, Ariz.) won his third title of the meet with an easy win in the 200m free in 1:50.74. Olympic silver medalist Tom Malchow of Club Wolverine took second (1:52.37).

I'm in the middle of resting for the Goodwill Games but I'm still trying to swim fast, said Neethling, who is from South Africa. It's hard to do but it seems to be working.

In one of the closest races of the day, Jamie Cail, a U.S. National teamer from Golden West Swim Club, came from behind to win the women's 400m IM in 4:50.65, beating USC All-American sophomore Brittany White (4:51.22). Fellow Trojan sophomore All-American Corrie Murphy actually led for most of the race, but was caught from behind in the last 25 meters and finished third (4:51.89).

"That was my best unshaved time so I'm pretty happy with that", Cail said. "I think I had a pretty good last leg in the freestyle."

Talor Bendel of Club Wolverine led for most of the women's 200m freestyle and was a clearcut winner (2:02.93) over second-place and top qualifier Ellen Stonebraker (2:03.49) of Wisconsin Aquatics.

U.S. National team swimmer B.J. Bedford won her second title of the meet by taking the women's 50m freestyle in 26.11, topping second-place Alison Sheppard (26.40) of Scotland.

Sabir Muhammad from Santa Clara Aquatics and an All-American at Stanford won the men's 50m freestyle in 23.10, edging Irvine Novaquatics Jason Lesak (23.31) and Felipe Delgado (23.54).

Muhammad's Cardinal teammate, Tom Wilkens, also swimming for Santa Clara, won the men's 200m breaststroke in 2:16.57. He beat Irvine Novaquatics Steven West (2:16.58), though West did set a meet record (2:16.43) in the morning prelims.

Ratapong Sirisanont, swimming for Mission Viejo, won the men‰s 400m IM in 4:23.49, beating Wilkens (4:25.68) and U.S. Olympic gold medalist Tom Dolan (4:27.80), who is also the world record holder in the event.

Trojan Swim Club's 800m relay of Melissa Pavlik, Casey Murphy, Paige Francis and Lindsay Benko finished first in 8:23.56. Hillenbrand‰s men's 800m relay of Ryno Markgraaff, Ugur Taner, Chris Cunningham and Neethling also won (7:34.96).

The meet concludes Sunday (July 26) with preliminaries beginning at 9 a.m. and finals starting at 5 p.m. The order of events are: 100 Butterfly, 100 Backstroke, 100 Breaststroke, 200 IM, 1500 Freestyle, 400

Medley Relay Complete results can be found on the internet at