2016 U.S. Winter Jr Champs (East): Kibler Drops 19.6 50 Free in Day 2 Prelims


After smashing the 15-16 NAG Record in the 200 free last night, Drew Kibler turned heads again in day 2 prelims at the 2016 U.S. Winter Junior Championships (East). This morning, 16-year-old Kibler dropped a blazing 19.66 to take top seed for finals, making him the 3rd fastest swimmer ever in the 15-16 age group behind only Michael Andrew (19.24) and Ryan Hoffer (19.38).

Even more impressive is that fact that Kibler swam that time after he had already competed in the 500 free earlier in the session. He earned the 2nd seed for finals in that race with a 4:20.52 behind Robert Freeman (4:18.03), who was the only swimmer to break 4:20 in prelims.

Reece Whitley is set to swim in lane 4 of the 200 IM final after clocking a 1:47.52 this morning ahead of Nicolas Albiero (1:47.90) and Ariel Spektor (1:47.97). Carson Foster, who just aged up after establishing a strong presence  the 13-14 top times lists, turned in a 1:48.59 to qualify 5th for tonight’s final.

On the women’s side, the 50 free prelims set up a loaded final with Kate Douglass leading the way in 22.43. The stacked field will also include Florida state champs Morgan Tankersley (22.60), Isabel Ivey (22.61), and Talia Bates (22.81), as well as Tennessee standout Alex Walsh (22.96). Each of those women are lined up for a double tonight. Tankersley is the top seed for the 500 free with her 4:42.39. The 200 IM final will feature Walsh (1:54.16), Ivey (1:58.87), Douglass (1:59.52), who all qualified for the championship final behind top seed Brooke Forde (1:57.16).

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Rubber ducky in my bubble bath

That would win NCAA’s right?


A guy named Caeleb Dressel would beg to differ.

Steve Nolan

ugh if only he hadn’t swam the useless 500 right before it smdh

bobo gigi

who knows?

Steve Nolan

*thumbs up*

bobo gigi

More seriously, I know I don’t know anything about swimming but you will not tell me that you go faster on sprint if you swim another race just before, especially a long distance. Kibler has a problem of rich. He’s too good from 50 to 500. We’ll see how he develops. More like a sprinter or more like a mid-distance guy. Right now I’d say that his best events are the 100 free and the 200 free. It could change in the future. By the way I see that my use of “useless” is very popular. Sorry for my lack of English vocabulary. However Steve, I never said that about the 500 free of Drew Kibler. I only use that… Read more »

Steve Nolan

I know I know, I’m just being a dink. Kinda what I do.


I repeat: if top swimmers only swam the few events I wanted them to do, they would develop into Oly Gold medalists.

Sean S

Can’t tell if this is tongue in cheek or not.


you guys overanalyze. He can do a couple more 50s on a relay this meet if he wants a swim without a race right before it. And he is only 16 he can do a zillion more 50s in college too. I think his 200M free is his best anyway.

bobo gigi

Not common to see a freestyler so good from 50 to 500 yards like Drew Kibler.
I really wonder the direction he’ll take in the next few years. As a 100 free/200 free swimmer or as a 200 free/400 free swimmer?
Looks like Agnel’s profile with more natural speed early in his career.

For the rest, very promising women’s 200 IM with Alex Walsh vs Brooke Forde vs Isabel Ivey.
Not too bad on the men’s side with Reece Whitley and Carson Foster.
Morgan Tankersley did the same double 500 free/50 free as Drew Kibler. She should win the longest distance but Kate Douglass will be tough to beat in the sprint.


With his range, he looks to me to be on the Christian Quintero/Townley Haas trajectory. I think 100, 200, and 500, but I think it depends a lot on where he goes to college.


If he continues to develop and swims internationally, I think he’ll be a 100/200 guy.

About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona and the University of Florida. While her college swimming career left a bit to be desired, her Snapchat chin selfies and hot takes on Twitter do not disappoint. She is now coaching for Loggerhead Aquatics in her hometown …

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