2023 Four Corners Speedo Sectionals – Austin
- March 23-27, 2023
- Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swim Center, University of Texas
- Short Course Yards (25 Yards)
- Results on MeetMobile: “2023 Four Corners Speedo Sectionals – Austin”
The first day of racing at the Sectionals Championship in Austin kicked off last night with athletes taking to the water to compete in the 100 free, 200 breast, 200 fly, and 200 free relay. The meet also featured the 200 medley relay and 1000 freestyle, both of which were swum during the morning session.
The meet started with a bang, with 15-year-old Madi Mintenko posting a huge lifetime best on her way to gold in the 100 free. Representing Pikes Peak Athletics, Mintenko dropped over a second from her lifetime best in the event to claim the top spot in 48.02. That time also put her well clear of the field, with 18-year-olds Lawson Ficken (49.18) and Lucy Mehraban (49.39) joining her on the podium.
Mintenko’s time also moves her up the all-time rankings for her age group. With over a year left in the age group, she now holds the 11th fastest performance all-time among 15-16-year-olds. She also ranks as the 8th fastest swimmer under the age of 18 in the event this year.
Joining Mintenko in winning an individual title for Pikes Peak Athletics was 2023 Stanford commit Caroline Bricker. Bricker finished in 2:08.01, two seconds faster than she had ever been in the event and nearly four seconds ahead of runner-up Emma Sayers (2:11.92).
That performance sets Bricker up well to be a key addition to Stanford when she arrives on campus this fall. During the 2022-2023 school year, that time would have led the team by half of a second. Her time would have also been fast enough to qualify for the B-final of the 2023 NCAA Championships.
Bricker followed her gold medal performance in the breast with a second-place finish in the 200 fly (1:55.77). The title in that event went to Hannah Bellard of Club Wolverine.
Bellard claimed gold by over two seconds in the race, touching in 1:53.50. She was actually faster during prelims, where she finished as the top seed in 1:53.20.
Her gold medal performance in the 200 fly was actually her second win of the day as she claimed the 1000 freestyle title during prelims. Leading the field by over ten seconds, Bellard finished in a huge lifetime best of 9:34.35. With that time, she now ranks as the 17th fastest performer all-time in the 17-18 age group.
A member of the Junior National Team, Bellard has been on the rise over the last year. In the 200 fly alone, she has taken nearly two full seconds off her lifetime best since last February. Bellard is committed to the University of Michigan for this fall.
The men’s 100 free title was won by former University of Tennessee Vol Jordan Tiffany. Tiffany, who is swimming unattached at the meet, won by nearly a second, touching in 42.39. Tiffany, who now trains at Brigham Young University, took over three seconds off of his lifetime best in the event. Entering the meet, the fastest he’d been in the race was 45.48 at the 2020 Utah High School State Championships.
Taking third place in the event was Keaton Jones, who finished in a lifetime best of 43.36. That time moves Jones into the top-100 all-time for the 17-18 age group, ranking him as the 82nd fastest all-time. That puts him immediately ahead of Blake Peironi and Brooks Curry who, at that age, were 43.37 and 43.38, respectively. Jones, who is a member of the United States Junior National team, is set to join the Cal Golden Bears this fall.
Also competing in the event was Ian Pickles, who earlier this week changed his 2023 commitment from Texas to USC. Pickles took fourth in the event, touching in 43.57. Entering the meet, he had never dipped below 44.0 in the race and will now join USC as one of the program’s sprinters this fall.
The men’s 200 breast title went to Hudson Schuricht of the Scottsdale Aquatic Club. Entering the meet, Schuricht had never been faster than 2:01 in the event. On his way to claiming the event title, he shaved five seconds of his previous lifetime best to touch in 1:56.70.
The University of Denver Hilltoppers women swept the relays on the first day of racing. In the 200 medley relay, which was swum during the prelims session, Charlotte Wilson, Charlotte Burnham, Lexi Greenhawt, and Lawson Ficken combined to take first with a time of 1:40.15. At night, Ana Loveridge joined Wilson, Greenhawt, and Ficken to capture the 200 free relay title in 1:31.48.
While the Hilltoppers swept the women’s relays, Swim Neptune took both men’s titles. Keaton Jones, Tres Mungia, August Vetsch, and Ian Pickles finished with the fastest time in the 200 medley relay (1:28.60). In the 200 free relay, Mungia was replaced by Beri Yang as the club picked up its second win in 1:20.07. Pickles notably led that relay off with a lifetime-best performance, touching in 20.00.
Other Event Winners
- Hudson Schuricht claimed the top spot in the 200 breast, dropping over five seconds in the process. Representing Scottsdale Aquatic Club, Schuricht finished in 1:56.70 to take gold.
- Joining his Scottsdale Aquatic Club teammate in claiming a meet title was David Vinokur in the 200 fly. Vinokur held off a late charge from runner-up Carson Hamblin (1:48.97) to win in 1:47.60.
- After trailing at the 900 mark of the men’s 1000 free, Jason Sugihara brought the race home in 53.81 to win in a time of 9:16.08.
This may be a provocative question due to her mom’s role with USA Swimming, but does anyone know if Madi intends to pursue competing internationally for Canada due to the generally easier pathway to making big teams?
Canada does seem to be very good at attracting US based youngsters who qualify to swim for them – Is it an active process within Canadian swimming? There are a number of speedy American juniors who are eligible to swim for GBR atm too, but I’d be surprised if they chose to – The US will naturally be their priority.
I don’t know if there is an active, formal process as it’s not like there’s a database of Canada-eligible American swimmers they can check – it’s probably more word of mouth and swimmers reaching out to them. Obviously with Madi’s dad being a former Olympian, she’s no doubt on SNC’s radar!
I remember Sydney Pickrem saying on a podcast that her club coach found out she had Canadian parents and suggested she reach out to SNC.
I would think that it would be pretty appealing to most swimmers to think about swimming for a country that they have a much better chance of making teams for. The only eligible swimmer I know of who had the luxury of not… Read more »