2016 GEORGIA FALL INVITATIONAL
- Friday, December 2nd-Sunday, December 4th
- Hosted by University of Georgia
- 25 yards
- Invite format
The Georgia Bulldogs are set to host their annual midseason invitational this weekend, with the action starting on Friday, December 2nd and ending on Sunday, December 4th. Prelims will begin at 9:30 am EST, while finals start at 5:00 p.m. EST. Sunday afternoon finals are the exception, as the session will start at 3:00 p.m. EST.
This week’s competition will include several races between Olympic medalists and NCAA Champions. Read on for a few of the notable races to look out for.
CHASE KALISZ VS. JAY LITHERLAND IN 400 IM
Following his Olympic redshirt last season, American Record holder Chase Kalisz is now back in action for the Bulldogs. The men’s 400 IM could potentially be one of the best races of the meet, as Kalisz, the Olympic silver medalist, and Georgia teammate Jay Litherland, an Olympic finalist, will be going head to head. We’ll also likely see that matchup in the 200 IM, with Cal’s Ryan Murphy, an Olympic backstroke champion, and UGA’s Gunnar Bentz, another U.S. Olympian, jumping in on the action as well.
In addition to the IMs, Kalisz will also be swimming the 200 breast. During his last NCAA season, he opted out of that race in favor of the 200 fly. It’ll be interesting to see if he makes a change in his 3rd event this season.
RYAN MURPHY LOOKS TO BUILD OFF OF RIO MOMENTUM
After sweeping the backstrokes at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games and setting a new World Record, Ryan Murphy is looking to carry his momentum into his senior year with the Cal Golden Bears. Murphy hasn’t raced much yet this yards season, as his only meet so far has been the triple distance meet against Stanford. Even so, he was fast enough there to establish himself as the fastest swimmer in the nation up to that point in both backstrokes.
Auburn’s Joe Patching is another swimmer to look out for in the backstrokes. While he may not swim the 100 back, he’s the reigning SEC Champion in the 200 back, so we’ll likely see him enter that race. Georgia freshman Javier Acevedo could also be challenging for a top spot, as he’s been looking great for the Bulldogs so far.
NCAA CHAMP SMOLIGA VS. WEITZEIL IN WOMEN’S 100 FREE
Another 2016 Rio Olympian, Olivia Smoliga, will be representing Georgia on the women’s side. Smoliga has a very strong 2015-16 season, during which she won the 50 free and 100 free at the 2016 NCAA Championships. This season, however, she’ll be up against American Record holder Abbey Weitzeil, a Cal freshman who was also on the 2016 Olympic squad.
Other title contenders include Cal’s Farida Osman, Michigan’s Siobhan Haughey,and Georgia’s Chantal van Landeghem. Olympic champ Amanda Weir will also be competing at the meet as a postgrad.
BAKER VS. BILQUIST IN WOMEN’S BACKSTROKES
Cal teammates Amy Bilquist and Kathleen Baker are both lightning fast backstrokers, so we could easily see them battling for the title in the 100 and 200 backstrokes. This summer in Rio, Baker was the Olympic silver medalist in the 100 back. Bilquist has been slightly faster in yards, however, as she’s the reigning Pac-12 champion in the 200 back.
Georgia’s Kylie Stewart and Olivia Smoliga may also be in the mix, as both have competed in the backstrokes at NCAAs. Smoliga also swam the 100 back for Team USA in Rio this summer, where she was a finalist.
- Auburn (men Only)
- Florida State
- UCLA (diving only)
- Harvard (diving only)