15-Year Old Summer McIntosh Has Splashy Debut in International Swimming League

15-year-old Candian Olympic Summer McIntosh had a blistering beginning to her International Swimming League career. Just days after the Toronto Titan’s 15th birthday, Summer McIntosh came in as one of the newest additions to the team for its second season in the league.

She helped lead Toronto to a 2nd-place finish of 496.5 points – just 15 points behind Energy Standard, and an early marker that the Titans have a chance to finish in the top 6 and take an automatic pass into the playoff round of Season 3 of the league.

Her first individual race at the meet was the women’s 400 freestyle in which she collected 8 points for her team thanks to a 4th place finish of 4:02.69. She finished roughly a second and a half after Leah Neale‘s winning 4:01.29 for the DC Trident, Energy Standard’s Siobhan Haughey (4:01.50), and Toronto teammate Julia Hassler (4:01.58).

While a 4th place finish was a solid start for McIntosh, day 2 provided even more opportunities for success. McIntosh picked up her first-ever ISL victory in the 200 butterfly in which she delivered a 2:06.61 to out-swim DC’s Zsuzsanna Jakabos who was a 2:07.10 and Energy Standard’s Helena Rosendahl Bach who was a 2:07.25.

As if that wasn’t enough, McIntosh returned later in the session to win a second event with her 4:30.05 400 IM performance. That swim for McIntosh was more than a second quicker than fellow Canadian and ISL competitor Bailey Andison who hit a 4:31.35 to place second for DC. McIntosh’s Toronto teammate Tessa Cieplucha made it an all-Canadian top 3 with her 4:33.14 for 3rd.

McIntosh also scored points swimming on the Toronto Titans’ 4×100 freestyle relay alongside Larissa Oliveira, Kylie Masse, and Lisa Bratton who together finished 6th in the event.

All in all, McIntosh finished match 1 with a total of 38 MVP points which was good enough for 7th overall at the meet.

McIntosh showed off her impressive versatility throughout match 1, collecting points in 3 different disciplines (freestyle, butterfly, and IM). Considering Toronto’s freestyle depth and the 200 freestyle’s proximity to the 400 IM, McIntosh didn’t swim the 200 for Toronto at the meet despite having recently raced the event for Canada at the Tokyo Olympics.

McIntosh raced to a 9th place finish in the 200 freestyle at the Olympics, hitting a 1:56.82 in the semi-finals. She also swam the 400 freestyle this summer and nearly reached the podium with a 4:02.42 Canadian record for 4th place overall.

Based on her Olympic and ISL performances, it’s likely that McIntosh could serve as a major asset for Toronto, playing a part in up to 6 events including the 200 free, 400 free, 200 fly, 200 IM, 400 IM, and 4×100 freestyle relay.

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Chris
28 days ago

Looks to be a major pick up for Toronto as a late round draft “pick”

Fundamentally it’s manifestly “unfair” but given it looks like it makes Toronto a proper competitor then let’s overlook it!

Given they’re all in the same place I’m struggling with the logic of needing to go to a certain team – although can see the benefits from a support network. Yet there’s also a strong rationale for teams to pick up star swimmers from their key domestic markets.

Something ISL are going to need to look at, assuming it continues.

Bruh
Reply to  Chris
27 days ago

Literally no Americans on the New York breakers

Chris
Reply to  Bruh
27 days ago

I have no idea how the US teams are doing for support but I assume NYB are likely to lag behind the other teams.

In ISL1, it was very clear at the London meet that 95% of the crowd was (unsurprisingly) pro London even if there were occasions that the crowd was a bit torn with UK swimmers on other squads (eg Georgia Davies and ENS).

Assuming the vision of ISL is in a post COVID world to move around a lot more and getting good gates then the product is going to need people to “care” about a franchise in the way I suspect very few care about NYB.

Without that, I think you get trapped with a… Read more »

Bill G
Reply to  Chris
27 days ago

The ISL teams remind me a bit of roller derby in the late 1980s and 1990s. Yes, the teams have city names but all the matches are filmed in the same stadium over the same weekend … the fans in the stands just get different team colours to wear.

tnp101
28 days ago

Does this mean she cannot swim in college in the US in the future?

observer
Reply to  tnp101
27 days ago

I was wondering if/how this impacted her Uni eligibility too (if that’s what she would choose). Good luck to her either way!

FanTO
Reply to  tnp101
27 days ago

Yes! While the rule on amateurism in NCAA still in effect. Pretty sure her parents knew this.

FanTO
Reply to  tnp101
27 days ago

Unless she won’t accept prize money in excess of her trainings expenses.

Admin
Reply to  FanTO
27 days ago

Maybe.

There hasn’t been a real test of whether athletes can compete for a PRO TEAM in a PRO LEAGUE and still be eligible. Of course an NBA player can’t just say “I’m playing only for expenses and then going back to the NCAA.”

But nobody ever asks those questions for swimming, because it hasn’t really mattered in the past.

jane
Reply to  tnp101
27 days ago

Why would she want to?
She can swim for Canadian universities and make money

Canuswim
Reply to  jane
27 days ago

Agree. Seems to have worked out very well for swimmers like Masse, Sanchez, Smith, Oleksiak, etc. …..

Yank in Cancuk-land
Reply to  jane
27 days ago

It’s kind of great and ironic that the Canadian USports system is much more ‘capitalist-friendly’ than the anachronistic faux-amateurism stance of the NCAA. Stay “The North” Summer … grab yourself a world class U of T or UBC education, swim fast, make money. It’s the (North) American way!

Canadian Swammer
Reply to  jane
27 days ago

USports is 🔥🔥🔥

Admin
Reply to  tnp101
27 days ago

Based on extrapolation from other sports (football, basketball, baseball), it should mean that.

But we won’t know for sure until someone tries. Which, unfortunately, is how most NCAA rules interpretations are done.

MFan
Reply to  tnp101
27 days ago

Yep.

DanS
27 days ago

Nice swims but this kid will be burned out by the time she is 18!

Hswimmer
Reply to  DanS
27 days ago

Never know. Hali Flickinger wasn’t…

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  Hswimmer
27 days ago

Nor Katie Ledecky either

Admin
Reply to  DanS
27 days ago

I’d love to hear the standard by which you’ve come to that conclusion.

It’s not 1978 anymore. Plenty of swimmers have been fast at 15 and still been fast at 18.

Becky D
Reply to  Braden Keith
27 days ago

Comment checks out. I have a couple lifetime bests from the Carter administration.

njones
Reply to  DanS
27 days ago

This wkd for her was just like a typical age group meet, 2 to 3 mid distance races plus a relay!

Just my thoughts
27 days ago

Most of the swimmers in this league are much older than Summer, is this a ‘fun’ environment for a 15 year old girl? Talent wise, of course, but emotionally and developmentally is this where she should be? Time will tell.

REL
Reply to  Just my thoughts
26 days ago

Summer trains with the Ontario High Performance team, where the other swimmers are significantly older than she is. Also a big age difference at the Olympics, where she roomed with Maggie MacNeil. In her CBC Olympic interviews, I’d say she acted like someone at her ability level rather than someone her age. Also that she at least held her own when interviewed as part of the 4×200 free relay team. One point she made about her Olympic experience was how much she was learning about nutrition, rest, etc. as a result hanging around with the older swimmers on the team.

Canuswim
Reply to  REL
25 days ago

Also smart move for all top Canadian swimmers to seize world class racing opportunities at ISL as most of Canada continues to be shut down for sanctioned meets. Covid numbers are now increasing once again.

Awsi Dooger
27 days ago

The summary on top neglected to mention that McIntosh also swam the 800 freestyle in Tokyo, missing the final but posting an excellent time of 8:25, which is superior to Ledecky before she turned 15. Of course, Ledecky improved dramatically at 15. McIntosh has also competed at 1500 although she dropped it at the last minute during Canadian trials, due to so much success at lower distances. She almost has too many options. It reminds me of Sifan Hassan’s amazing versatility in track.