13-Year Old Alana Berlin Swims 54.5 in 100 Yard Backstroke at Schroeder Y Dual

Wisconsin Swimming League – Schroeder vs. Ozaukee

  • September 19, 2020
  • Walter Schroeder Aquatic Center, Brown Deer, Wisconsin
  • Short Course Yards (25 yards)
  • Meet Results PDF – 12 & under
  • Meet Results PDF – 13 & over

Two Wisconsin powerhouses, the Schroeder YMCA and Ozaukee Aquatics, raced in a dual meet on Saturday as part of their return-to-swimming meet schedule. The two teams are participating in the newly-envisioned Wisconsin Swimming League this season as part of a reimagined version of the sport during the coronavirus pandemic. They are racing as part of an 8-team league, that also includes Waukesha Express, Lake Country, Elmbrook, Shorewood, Southwest Aquatic Team, and Rocket Aquatics.

Rather than the traditional large, all-weekend invitationals, meets in the fall and winter will be held in a dual meet format, with an All-Star meet in early November where high point scorers from across the ‘regular season’ will be invited to compete.

As part of the format, athletes are allowed to compete in up to 3 individual events and 4 relay events.

Schroeder, the host team, swept the titles across all genders and age groups at the meet, with the most competitive being the 10 & under boys, which saw just a 22-point margin. Schroeder’s dominance in scoring was largely driven by having significantly more athletes competing.

Among the highlights of the meet was 13-year old Schroeder swimmer Alana Berlin swimming 54.53 in the 100 yard backstroke. That undercuts her previous best time of 55.78 set in August of this year.

Berlin is one of the top stories coming out of quarantine. Prior to the shutdowns, her best time was a 57.86 done in February. In about a month of racing since the coronavirus pandemic restrictions began to ease, she’s already dropped that time by more than 2 seconds.

Berlin’s new best time ties her for 63rd-place all-time in the 13-14 age group, in spite of only being midway through her 13th year.

While USA Swimming doesn’t keep official single-age records, the historic times database shows that the fastest-ever 100 yard back by a 13-year old is a 53.21 set last year by another Wisconsinite Maggie Wanezek. Berlin ranks tied for 10th all-time at that age, with the list of those faster including names like World Record breakers Missy Franklin and Regan Smith, American Record breakers like Liz Pelton, and current rising stars like Phoebe Bacon, Claire Curzan, and Alex Walsh.

Also at the meet, she won the girls’ 13-14 100 yard free in 53.11, which chopped a full second off her best time. She also swam on a 200 free relay, where she split 23.38 on the 2nd leg of a 1:40.15 Schroeder relay; and on a 200 medley relay, where she split 25.71 on the backstroke leg en route to a team 1:51.36.

Also of note at the meet was a 1:40.56 from Schroeder’s 200 medley relay. That group broke the old Schroeder Team Record of 1:51.91 that was set in 2018 by the team of Ziyad Saleem, Ryan Wood, Sam Miller, and Ben Meulemans.

Record-Breaking Swimmers & Splits:

  • Jack Sullivan – 25.35
  • Julian Cortright – 28.02
  • Fernando Islas – 24.59
  • Sam Lorenz – 22.60
  • Final Time: 1:40.56

Other Notable Swims:

  • Ziyad Saleem, who was part of the old team record in the 200 medley relay, won the boys’ 200 IM in 1:54.81. That’s a new lifetime best for him by a second-and-a-half. Saleem was committed to Iowa before the Hawkeyes cut their program, and after several best times post-quarantine, he’s now one of the top available recruits in the high school class of 2021. He also swam 52.71 in the 100 fly.
  • 17-year old Leonardo Gandaria won the boy’s 200 free in 1:40.31. That’s just seven-tenths slower than his lifetime best in that event. He’s also an uncommitted high school senior.
  • High school senior Megan Hartlieb broke 1 minute in the 100 yard fly for the first time in a sanctioned meet. Another orphaned Iowa commit, she finished in 56.89 on Saturday.


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About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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