2015 U.S. Speedo Junior Nationals: Day 5 Prelims Live Recap

2015 U.S. Speedo Junior Nationals

The last day of the 2015 Speedo Junior National Championships will feature some familiar faces going for their nth wins. Ella Eastin, who has already been crowned national junior champion in the 400 IM and 200 fly, will attempt a hat trick with the 200 IM. Michael Andrew, meanwhile, is top seed in both the 200 IM and the 50 free.

Women’s 200 Meter IM – Prelims

The earlier heats of the women’s 200 IM gave us some great swims, but the first breakout performance came from Northern Kentucky Clippers’ Sophie Skinner in heat 5, who dropped 2.3 seconds to dip under 2:20 with 2:19.23. Skinner remained at the top until the circle-seeded heats. In fact, no one broke 2:20 until heat 9, when Hannah Holman of Scottsdale Aquatic Club went 2:19.95 to win the last time-seeded heat.

Katie Drabot from Ozaukee Aquatics, seeded third in the event, crushed her heat with 2:15.64, only 1.3 seconds off her seed time. Evie Pfeifer of Flyers Aquatic Swim Team and Dannie Dilsaver of Greater Nebraska climbed to the top with Drabot, going 2:18.31 and 2:18.63, respectively.

Bellevue Club’s Kim Williams took the penultimate heat by a large margin, touching in 2:16.79. Top-seeded Ella Eastin of Socal Aquatics wrapped things up with a 2:15.50 victory over Miranda Tucker of Livonia Community, 2:15.50 to 2:16.79.

The top 8 finishers (Eastin, Drabot, Wiulliams, Tucker, Regan Barney 2:18.00, Pfeifer, Kay Sargent 2:18.35, and Dilsaver) all went under the 2016 Olympic Trials standard of 2:18.69. Skinner’s 2:19.23 led the qualifiers for the B final.

Men’s 200 Meter IM – Prelims

The men’s 200 IM was marked by some truly serious time drops, beginning with that of Carmel Swim Club 16-year-old Charles Vaughan who got things off to a nice start in heat 2 with a 3.4-second improvement over his seed time to lead the field with 2:06.64. That time held through three more heats until ‘aukai Lileikis of Aulea Swim Club dropped a 2:05.98, his best by 2.7 seconds, to take over at the top.

Nick Milikich of Nitro Swimming was the first to go under the OT standard when he dropped 2.9 seconds to win his heat with 2:04.93. That time held up as the fifth-fastest overall and earned Milikich a spot in tonight’s A final. His teammate Sean Grieshop won the first circle-seeded heat with 2:03.76 to take over as the fastest time of the morning. But Thomas Dillinger of Greenwich YWCA dropped a stunning 3.5 seconds in the following heat to take over with 2:03.03, earning his first OT cut in the event at the same time.

Michael Andrew of Indie Swimming went 2:02.51 to win the final heat by 2.5 seconds and jump to the top of the leaderboard. The top eight for tonight’s championship final are: Andrew; Dillinger; Grieshop; Mark Andrew of Greater Miami Valley YMCA (2:04.58, a PB by 2.5 seconds and his first OT cut in the 200); Milikich; Nick Alexander of Flyers Aquatic Swim Team with 2:05.15; Tommy Cope from Dayton Raiders, who dropped 1.6 seconds to qualify with 2:05.19; and Daniel Gloude of Aquazot Swim Club, who also improved by 1.6 seconds with 2:05.64.

The top 5 finishers were all under the 2016 Olympic Trials qualifying time of 2:05.09.

Brian Poon of Phoenix Swimming went 2:05.68 to lead the B-final qualifiers. Lileikis made that final, as did Swim Pasadena’s Sean Lee (who dropped 9/10) for 2:05.81.

Women’s 50 Meter Freestyle – Prelims

Big drops continued in the women’s 50 free, where 13-year-old Kate Douglass of Westchester Aquatic Club continued her run of impressive swims at this meet with a 26.36 prelims effort, her best by .35. That time held up as the field’s fastest through three more heats until Krista Duffield dropped .04 for 26.29.

Caroline McTaggart kicked off the circle-seeded heats with her first sub-26, winning in 25.85. In the very next heat Pine Crest’s Marta Ciesla took .31 off her seed time to blast a 25.31 and jump to the top of the leaderboard. Katrina Konopka won the final heat in a personal-best 25.47 to move into the second slot going into finals.

There were several ties, most notably for 8th place, which will necessitate swimoffs. Otherwise, the championship final will consist of Ciesla; Konopka; Anya Goeders of Mako Swim Team (25.84); McTaggart; Bolles School Sharks’ Kasey Schmidt (25.92); Nika Blank of Peddie Aquatics Association (25.95, a best time by 2/10); and Isabelle Henig of Palo Alto Stanford (26.09). Vying for lane 8 will be Morgan Tankersley of Greater Tampa and Scottsdale’s Taylor Ruck, both of whom went 26.13 (which equated to -.10 for Tankersley, +.10 for Ruck).

The top 9 finishers were all under the 2016 Olympic Trials qualifying time of 26.19.

Women’s 50 Meter Freestyle – Swimoff

In an incredible show of strength, four women in the triple swimoff came out with new personal bests and four were under the Olympic Trials qualifying standard. Ruck edged Tankersley, 26.02 to 26.03, to earn the eighth spot in the championship final, while Allie Wooden of Cincinnati Marlins also went 26.02, nipping Lauren Heller of Lake Erie Silver Dolphins by .03 for the first alternate spot. Heller had come into the meet with 26.64; her 26.05 in the swimoff punches her ticket to the 2016 Olympic Trials. In the “just in case” category, King Aquatic Club’s Ashley Sutherland went up against Denver Swim Academy’s Annie Ochitwa to determine 28th place. Sutherland out-touched Ochitwa, 26.30 to 26.40.

Men’s 50 Meter Freestyle – Prelims

Michael Andrew led the qualifiers for the second time of the morning, knocking out a field-leading 22.56 to win the final heat of the morning. That improves on his lifetime-best by .07 and moves him ever-so-much-closer to Caeleb Dressel’s 15-16 national age group record of 22.39.

Maxime Rooney surprised the crowd with a 23.27 out of heat 7, improving his personal-best by 8/10 and coming in just under the OT standard. Rooney’s time held up as the fastest through six more heats until the circle-seeded swimmers hit the water. Dean Farris of Metro Atlantic and Albert Gwo from Palo Alto Stanford moved in front of Rooney with their 1-2 finish in heat 14; Farris went 23.12 (best by .46), while Gwo was 23.26 (best by .14).

James Jones of Nation’s Capital, one of only two entrants with sub-23 seed times, won the second-to-last heat in 23.18. He wound up third overall, behind Andrew and Farris. Gwo was fourth, while Rooney’s early-heat swim landed him fifth. Billy Beard of Malvern Swimming earned the sixth spot in finals with his 23.34, a .37-second improvement from his seed time. Seventh was Tyler Harper of Stingrays, who dropped 3/10 for 23.38. Rounding out the championship final qualifiers was Will Davis of Bolles School Sharks, who erased .16 off his previous best to make it in with 23.41.

The top 5 finishers were all under the 2016 Olympic Trials qualifying time of 23.29.

Men’s 50 Meter Freestyle – Swimoff

John Wesley of SwimAtlanta knocked it out of the park in his swimoff against Lake Shore’s Trevor Lake for the second alternate position. Wesley dropped .43 from an already-personal-best 23.72 out of prelims, to win the swimoff and qualify for 2016 Olympic Trials. Wesley was entered with 23.72, which he swam again in prelims, tying Lake (seed time 23.37). Lake went 23.52 in the swimoff to improve on his morning swim. Bolles School Sharks’ Isaac Davis eked out a win by .01 over Luke Hemmingsen of Greater Omaha, 23.44 to 23.45, to claim 17th place in case a scratch were to move one of them into the B final. Hemmingsen was entered with 23.95, while Davis came in with 23.80.




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Good swim by MA in prelims in the 50 free. .17 away from the NAG.

About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swim/swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

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