14-Year Old Lucca Battaglini Out-Battles NT’er Charlotte Hook in 200 Fly

Braden Keith
by Braden Keith 13

August 17th, 2020 Club, News


  • August 14-16, 2020
  • Triangle Aquatic Center, Cary, North Carolina
  • SCY (25 yard) Course
  • Results on Meet Mobile: “TAC TITANS Challenge Invitational Meet”

Arguably the race of the night on the final day of the TAC Titans Challenge Invitational Meet on Sunday was the 200 fly, where 14-year old Lucca Battaglini, who has emerged as an age group star this weekend, battled against US National Teamer Charlotte Hook in the 200 fly.

Battaglini went out hard, opening his swim in 53.31, more than 2 seconds ahead of Hook. The two held that spacing through the 3rd 50, but Hook charged hard on the last lap to close the gap.

A very fast 28.85 closing 50 for Hook halved the gap to Battaglini, but ultimately the young Club Kick Start swimmer held off his female foe to win by a margin of 1:52.86 to 1:53.93.

For Battaglini, that capped his meet with a 6th best time in 6 swims after swimming a 45.81 to finish 2nd in the 100 free earlier in the evening. This drop, though, was his biggest, knocking 9.93 seconds from his previous lifetime best in the event.

His full results from the weekend, including national ranks in the 13-14 age group:

  • 500 free – 4:35.74, 3.09 second drop (season: 11th, all-time: N/A)
  • 50 free – 20.78, .50 second drop (season: 2nd, all-time: t-15th
  • 100 fly – 49.07, 1.52 second drop (season: 1st, all-time: 8th)
  • 100 back – 49.83, 3.10 second drop (season: 2nd, all-time: 23rd)
  • 100 free – 45.81, .83 second drop (season: 2nd, all-time: t-24th )
  • 200 fly – 1:52.86, 9.93 second drop (season: 9th, all-time: 98th)

For Hook, the swim was just .44 seconds short of her lifetime best swim. The 200 fly, in long course, is the race that placed Hook on the 2019-2020 USA Swimming National Team roster, though as she’s shown again this weekend, she’s one of the most versatile young swimmers in the country.

Other Winners and Highlights of Sunday’s Racing:

  • 17-year old TAC Titans swimmer Lance Norris won the boys’ 200 back in 1:46.08. That swim was 3-tenths of a second short of his best time, and broke a personal streak of swimming 13 best times in 13 races since returning to competition post-quarantine. He did add one more best time, swimming 46.37 in the 100 free later in the evening for 4th place. That was a half-a-second drop for him.
  • 22-year old Zhada Fields, who finished her college career at the University of North Carolina in 2019, swam 49.35 in the 100 yard free.
  • The victory in the boys’ 200 breast went to Club Kick Start’s Matthew Congiusta in 2:08.21. That drop, which was more than 3 seconds, was coupled with a 2.4 second improvement in the 200 back for him on Sunday. He was a perfect 5-for-5 in best times on the weekend, with the 200 breast being his first win of the meet.
  • The top female finisher in the 200 breast was Liza Murtagh of NSEA. She swam 2:27.26 after previously finishing atop the female field in the 100 breast earlier in the meet (1:08.78).
  • Thor Dyke topped the boys’ 1650 free in 16:00.11, while Emily Carpenter topped the girls’ race in 17:21.67.

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Clown Show
2 years ago

This team is so privileged.

Reply to  Clown Show
2 years ago

You say that as if it is a bad thing. Maybe it’s just great coaching that filters down to the team’s collective psyche.

Reply to  Braden Keith
2 years ago

Aren’t these intramural meets?

Reply to  applesandoranges
2 years ago

The first one was. I think the second one was a dual meet with MOR, and the last one was an open invitational. Kudos for leading the way. Hopefully GAC and Mecklenburg Aquatic Center are taking notes.

NC Fan
Reply to  Rookie
2 years ago

As more truly public pools, hopefully GAC and MCAC and teams there will actually embrace and enforce the social distancing and mask wearing requirements that are currently included in all meet sanctions.

Reply to  NC Fan
2 years ago

Can’t speak for MCAC, but GAC has enforced those requirements.

Reply to  applesandoranges
2 years ago

life isn’t fair, there’s no point in crying about it. one of the big things that I had to realize as an age grouper is that there’s always going to be kids out there that are more talented, are able to train more often, are able to always afford the latest and greatest suits for each swim at a championships. you can’t control what other people, but what you can do is focus on yourself and how to keep getting better and controlling the things that you can.

Reply to  applesandoranges
2 years ago

It is a bad thing – just like NOVA in Virginia.

2 years ago

Mark Frank’s fingers must be sore from typing press releases. Glad somebody is racing!

2 years ago

A new TAC 100 fly record was also set by Russell Exum at this meet.

2 years ago

One upside to these less formal meets is that men and women (or boys and girls) are able to race each other. For the elite women and girls, this is a great benefit.

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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