2021 NJ BAC Memorial Day Invitational
- May 28-30
- New Providence, New Jersey
- Long Course Meters (LCM)
At Berkeley Aquatic Club’s Memorial Day Invitational, 14-year-old Sarah Rodrigues posted a 1:04/2:14 backstroke double among three total event wins.
Rorigues was entered in the meet with a 2:17.95 in the 200 backstroke and a 1:04.34 in the 100 backstroke. Both times came from the BAC Jim Wood Memorial Invitational in March. Before the 2021 long course season began, Rodrigues had only barely cracked the 1:07 mark in the 100 back, and had never broken 2:20 in the 200.
She swam her 100 back on Saturday, cruising to a 1:05.23 finish in prelims and qualifying herself as the first seed in finals. Also in prelims, Rodrigues swam the 200 IM and 100 free and placed in the top-four for each. She swam to third place in the 200 IM (prelims) and shaved off over a second in the event. The time nearly qualifies her for the 2021 Futures Championships (2:26.39 qualifying standard).
Later that day, Rodrigues came back for finals and solidified her win in the 100 backstroke. She was the only swimmer in the event to be under the 1:06 mark. Junseo Kim finished behind Rodrigues in a 1:06.72 (2021 Futures cut), followed by Chloe Kim in a 1:08.33. Rodrigues gained just a half second in the event. Her best time of 1:04.34 in the event qualifies her for the 2021 Speedo Summer Championships (1:04.39 qualifying standard).
On Sunday, Rodrigues threw down best times in the 200 back and 100 fly and captured wins in both events. At finals, she started the night with a nearly three-second drop in the 100 fly, blazing to a 1:04.45 finish and subsequently qualifying for the 2021 Futures Championships. Rodrigues just out-touched Sydney Rodriuez of SCAR, who clocked in at a 1:04.89. Sophia Toomey of BAC took third with a 1:05.52.
Rodrigues’ 200 backstroke was undoubtedly her most impressive swim of the meet. She took the race out in a quick 1:06.39, which put her far ahead of the rest of the pack. She finished just as strong, closing out the race with a 33.24 50 split to finish at a 2:14.90. Rordrigues’ time was below the mark for the 2021 Speedo Summer Championships, and nearly qualified her for the Olympic Trials. She missed the Wave I OT cut by a mere .21 seconds. The time puts her at third in the nation for the 13-14 age group (2020-2021 season). It ties her for the 36th position in the all time ranking in the event for the 13-14 age group.
Other highlights from the meet include:
- 13-year-old Chloe Kim blasted a 2:22.08 200 IM, dropping 1.5 seconds from her entry time and winning the event. The time qualifies her for the 2021 Futures Championships and the 2021 Winter Juniors Championships, and ranks her eighth in the nation for the 13-14 age group and first for the 13-year-old category.
- Junseo Kim of Scarlet Aquatics won the 200 fly in a 2:16.19, nearing her best time of 2:15.51. Both times meet the qualification standard for the 2021 Speedo Summer Championships. Kim also swam the 100 back, where she placed second behind Rodrigues. She will continue her swimming career at Yale next fall.
- Iris Kim, also of Scarlet Aquatics, shaved seven seconds off of her entry time and took second in the 1500 to teammate Kate Hurst with a time of 17:43.94. The time puts her at third in the nation for the 13-year-old age bracket. Hurst, 15, won the event with a 17:12.07.