2017 Arena PSS – Santa Clara: Day 4 Prelims Live Recap


The fourth and final day is upon us in Santa Clara, with four more events on the schedule: the 200 fly, 100 breast, 100 back, and 200 IM. Approximately ten minutes after prelims alternating heats of the women’s 800 and men’s 1500 free will begin, with the fastest heat of each swimming with finals.

The women’s 200 fly shapes up to be a battle between top two seeds Katie McLaughlin and Kelsi Worrell, who have both performed well here. Jack CongerTom Shields and Chase Kalisz highlight the men’s event.

The women’s 100 breast is relatively wide open, with Hong Kong’s Yvette Kong the top seed coming in at 1:07.69. Just like the 200 on Friday, the men’s 100 breast here in Santa is stacked, with Kevin CordesJosh PrenotWill LiconNicolas Fink and Michael Andrew all entered. All five were finalists in the event at the U.S. Olympic Trials last year. Caeleb Dressel is also entered, though he was a no-show in both his events yesterday.

The women’s 100 back is led by Olympic bronze medalist Kylie Masse of Canada, who sits atop the world rankings this year with her time of 58.21 from April. Amy Bilquist and Regan Smith are also seeded under a minute, and last night’s 200 winner Hilary Caldwell will be in the mix as well. Olympic silver medalist Kathleen Baker was 4th in the 200 last night, but won’t compete at all today.

The men’s event should be an exciting one, with Cal teammates Ryan Murphy and Jacob Pebley set to face off with 2012 Olympic gold medalist Matt Grevers. The battle for a spot in the 100 back on the World Championship team is expected to come between these three, though NC State’s Justin Ress might have something to say about that after going a best of 53.49 in Charlotte this weekend.

The women’s 200 IM will be a rematch of last night’s 400, where Madisyn Cox and Elizabeth Beisel finished 1-2. The men’s event is loaded, with the Georgia trio of Chase KaliszGunnar Bentz and Jay Litherland entered, along with Josh Prenot, Conor DwyerMichael Andrew, Will Licon and Caeleb Dressel. Don’t sleep on Abrahm DeVine either, who is coming off a solid runner-up finish in the 400 IM last night.

Women’s 200 Fly Prelims

  • Meet Record: 2:06.89, Kathleen Hersey, 2011
  1. Kelsi Worrell, CARD, 2:09.37
  2. Katie McLaughlin, CAL, 2:12.21
  3. Lauren Case, TXLA, 2:12.83
  4. Isabella Paez, VEN, 2:13.61
  5. Remedy Rule, TXLA, 2:14.02
  6. Maria Jose Mata Coco, MEX, 2:14.05
  7. Maria Clara Roman Mantilla, TT, 2:14.27
  8. Diana Luna Sanchez, MEX, 2:14.28
  9. Caitlin Casazza, ABSC, 2:15.23

Kelsi Worrell blitzed the fourth of five heats in the women’s 200 fly, out quick in 28.97 and holding 33s the rest of the way for the top time of the morning in 2:09.37. Her season best of 2:09.04 from the Mesa stop has her 19th in the world this year.

Katie McLaughlin had a solid swim out of heat 5 to take the number two seed in 2:12.21, just ahead of Lauren Case. McLaughlin was out faster than Worrell at the 100 (1:01.93), but struggled a bit on the way home with a final 50 split of 35.89.

Case’s Longhorn teammate Remedy Rule qualified 5th overall in 2:14.02, and there will be some international flair added to tonight’s final with Venezuela’s Isabella Paez qualifying 4th, and the Mexican duo of María José Mata Coco and Diana Luna Sanchez qualifying 6th and 8th respectively.

Men’s 200 Fly Prelims

  • Meet Record: 1:54.31, Michael Phelps, 2009
  1. Tom Shields, CAL, 1:58.90
  2. Chase Kalisz, NBAC, 1:59.08
  3. Pace Clark, ABSC, 1:59.09
  4. Gunnar Bentz, ABSC, 1:59.74
  5. Mick Litherland, DYNA, 1:59.79
  6. Mike Thomas, CAL, 2:00.14
  7. Jack Conger, UN, 2:00.78
  8. Marcos Lavado, VEN, 2:01.09
  9. Hector Ruvalcaba Cruz, UN, 2:01.66

Tom Shields really went out for it this morning, touching in 25.99 at the 50 and 55.76 at the 100 before taking the top seed in 1:58.90. Though he came home in 32.2, that’s still a very strong swim from Shields after a sub-par 100.

Chase Kalisz and Pace Clark took control of their respective heats, smoothly advancing to tonight’s final 2nd and 3rd overall in 1:59.08 and 1:59.09. Gunnar Bentz nearly ran down Shields in their heat, and takes the 4th seed into tonight at 1:59.74, and Mick Litherland also cracked two minutes in 1:59.79 for 5th.

Jack Conger, winner of the 100 fly on Friday, advanced 7th overall. Both Clark Smith and Grant Shoults were no-shows in their heats. Smith is slated to swim the 1500 later tonight.

Women’s 100 Breast Prelims

  • Meet Record: 1:05.83, Rebecca Soni, 2011
  1. Marina Garcia, CAL, 1:09.24
  2. Macarena Ceballos, ARG, 1:09.58
  3. Emily Escobedo, UN, 1:10.15
  4. Riley Scott, MP, 1:10.33
  5. Melissa Rodriguez, MEX, 1:10.70*
  6. Maria Carlson, WA, 1:10.70*
  7. Ema Rajic, UN, 1:11.02
  8. Jamie Zhen Yeung, HKG, 1:11.07
  9. Kim Williams, UN, 1:11.10

Cal’s Marina Garcia and Argentina’s Macarena Ceballos raced to the only sub-1:10 times of the morning in heat 5, heading into finals as the top two seeds.

Emily Escobedo won heat 4 to take the 3rd seed in 1:10.15, and Mexico’s Melissa Rodriguez won the last heat to tie for tonight’s 5th seed in 1:10.70 with Maria Carlson. Top seed coming in Yvette Kong just missed the A in 10th at 1:11.42.

Men’s 100 Breast Prelims

  • Meet Record: 59.51, Cody Miller, 2015
  1. Kevin Cordes, UN, 1:01.08
  2. Carlos Claverie, CARD, 1:01.57
  3. Miguel De Lara Ojeda, MEX, 1:01.67
  4. Michael Andrew, RPC, 1:01.80
  5. Nicolas Fink, ABSC, 1:01.89
  6. Will Licon, TXLA, 1:02.22
  7. Connor Hoppe, CAL, 1:02.87
  8. Hank Pope, UN-ST, 1:03.19
  9. Daniel Roy, KING, 1:03.24

Kevin Cordes threw down the top time of the morning in the last heat, clocking 1:01.08 to top Michael Andrew (1:01.80) who qualifies 4th overall.

Amidst the big names Carlos Claverie and Miguel De Lara Ojeda won the other two circle-seeded heats, earning the #2 and 3 times of the morning in 1:01.57 and 1:01.67 respectively. Nic Fink and Will Licon also easily made finals, 5th and 6th overall.

After an impressive double victory last night, Jay Litherland qualified for the B-final in 1:04.40, impressive given it’s one of his off-events. Both Josh Prenot and Caeleb Dressel didn’t show up for their heats.

Women’s 100 Back Prelims

  • Meet Record: 58.96, Emily Seebohm, 2016
  1. Kylie Masse, WEST, 1:00.12
  2. Regan Smith, RIPT, 1:01.14
  3. Amy Bilquist, CAL, 1:01.61
  4. Hilary Caldwell, ISC, 1:01.86
  5. Hellen Moffitt, NCAC, 1:01.90
  6. Danielle Hanus, ISC, 1:02.20
  7. Fernanda Gonzalez, MEX, 1:02.27
  8. Caroline Baldwin, NCAC, 1:02.43
  9. Erin Voss, UN-ST, 1:02.45

World #1 Kylie Masse popped off a smooth 1:00.12 in the last heat of the women’s 100 back for the top seed of the morning, followed by fellow Canadian Hilary Caldwell (1:01.86) who posted the 4th fastest time of the prelims.

Regan Smith of Riptide and Amy Bilquist of Cal each won their respective heats for the 2nd and 3rd seeds heading into tonight at 1:01.14 and 1:01.86, and Hellen Moffitt from North Carolina also cracked 1:02 in 1:01.86.

Danielle Hanus made it three Canadians in the A-final tonight with her impressive showing of 1:02.20 for 6th. Among those swimming in the B-final tonight, barring scratches, will be Isabel Ivey and Allie Szekely.

Elizabeth BeiselJanet Hu and Ally Howe all were no-shows. Beisel did this yesterday in the 200 back, choosing to focus on the 400 IM, so it’s likely the same move in order to focus on today’s 200 IM.

Men’s 100 Back Prelims

  1. Grigory Tarasevich, CARD, 54.71
  2. Ryan Murphy, CAL, 55.01
  3. Jacob Pebley, CAL, 55.19
  4. Matt Grevers, FORD, 55.59
  5. Bob Glover, UN, 55.78
  6. Javier Acevedo, AJAX, 55.81
  7. Corey Main, GSC, 56.23
  8. Richard Bohus, UN, 56.66
  9. Jack Dolan, RSCA, 56.87

Grigory Tarasevich out-raced Ryan Murphy in the final heat of the men’s 100 back for the top seed in 54.71, the only man under 55 seconds. Murphy closed on Tarasevich, negative splitting the race with a strong back half of 27.41 to post the 2nd best time in 55.01.

Jacob Pebley and Matt Grevers won the other two circle-seeded heats for the 3rd and 4th seeds overall in 55.19 and 55.59, and Bob Glover and Javier Acevedo also dipped under 56 seconds in 55.78 and 55.81 respectively.

16-year-old Jack Dolan rounded out the A-final qualifiers in 56.87, and Maxime Rooney will be among tonight’s B-finalists after going 57.83 for 16th.

Pace ClarkPatrick Conaton and Yuri Kisil were among the no-shows in this event.

Women’s 200 IM Prelims

  • Meet Record: 2:09.53, Ariana Kukors, 2011
  1. Madisyn Cox, TXLA, 2:15.06
  2. Sarah Darcel, ISC, 2:15.73
  3. Mackenzie Padington, ISC, 2:15.83
  4. Emily Escobedo, UN, 2:16.79
  5. Allie Szekely, UN-ST, 2:16.96
  6. Siobhan Haughey, HKG, 2:16.98
  7. Monika Gonzalez-Hermosillo, MEX, 2:17.07
  8. Emma Barksdale, GAME, 2:17.42
  9. Brooke Zeiger, UOFM, 2:17.54

Madisyn Cox held off a hard charging Mackenzie Padington in the 9th and final heat of the women’s 200 IM for the top seed in a time of 2:15.06. Padington qualified 3rd overall in 2:15.83, and fellow Island swimmer Sarah Darcel won the 7th heat for the #2 seed at 2:15.83.

Lane 1 was on fire in this event, as both Padington and Allie Szekely qualified for the final out of it. Szekely held off Elizabeth Beisel in heat 8, taking the 5th seed in 2:16.96. Beisel touched in 2:17.05, but was DQed.

Emily Escobedo and Siobhan Haughey finished 2nd and 3rd in the last heat behind Cox, qualifying 4th and 6th overall.

Men’s 200 IM Prelims

  • Meet Record: 1:57.76, Michael Phelps, 2006
  1. Michael Andrew, RPC, 2:01.75
  2. Abrahm DeVine, UN-ST, 2:01.90
  3. Mohamed Hussein, RAC, 2:03.16
  4. Nicolas Fink, ABSC, 2:03.17
  5. Jay Litherland, DYNA, 2:03.19
  6. Will Licon, TXLA, 2:03.94
  7. Matthew Josa, CAL, 2:03.95
  8. Juan Sequera, VEN, 2:04.43
  9. Kieran Smith, RAC, 2:04.54

Michael Andrew went out in the first circle-seeded heat, splitting 25.14 on the fly leg. He held the rest of the race together well, winning the heat and taking the top seed into tonight at 2:01.75. Jay Litherland cruised to take 2nd in the heat in 2:03.19, 5th fastest of the morning. He’s the man to beat tonight after an impressive 4:13 in the 400 IM last night.

Abrahm DeVine flew past Matthew Josa on the freestyle leg in heat 10, taking the heat in 2:01.90 for the #2 time of the prelims. Josa went out similar to Andrew in 25.16, also managing to hang on and make the A-final in 7th at 2:03.95.

Four of tonight’s finalists came from the 11th and final heat, led by Mohamed Hussein who out-touched Nicolas Fink by 0.01 in 2:03.16. Hussein qualified 3rd overall, Fink was 4th, and Will Licon and Kieran Smith also advanced out of the heat in 6th and 9th.

Gunnar Bentz was among those missing the A-final, splitting a very sluggish 1:01.14 on the first 100. He came back solid, but it wasn’t enough as he finished 11th overall in 2:04.63. Barring scratches, he, along with Michael Weiss (2:04.57), Carlos Claverie (2:04.92) and Javier Acevedo (2:05.57), will swim the B-final tonight.

This event was full of no-shows and declared false-starts, which isn’t a huge surprise given it’s Sunday. Caeleb Dressel and Chase Kalisz were DFS, while Josh Prenot and Conor Dwyer were among those who were NS.

Women’s 800 Free (Early Heats)

  1. Hania Moro, RAC, 8:53.24
  2. Kelly Fertel, GRSC, 8:55.51
  3. Meryn McCann, ABSC, 8:55.78

Through the two early heats of the women’s 800 free, Hania Moro of Retriever Aquatic Club leads the pack at 8:53.24, followed by Kelly Fertel of Gulliver Swim Club who knocked over 20 seconds off her seed to go 8:55.51 in the slowest heat with just three swimmers.

The fastest heat, featuring Mackenzie PadingtonCierra Runge and Kristel Kobirch, will swim with finals.

Men’s 1500 Free

  1. Ben Lawless, PEAK, 15:41.19
  2. Victor Goicoechea, WA, 15:46.65
  3. Mikey Calvillo, AAAA, 15:47.10

Through the first two heats of the men’s 1500 Ben Lawless, representing Central Chesapeake, leads the way in 15:41.19. Victor Goicoechea takes the 2nd spot from the slowest heat, clocking 15:46.65 to knock over 8 seconds off his seed. Mikey Calvillo and Aidan Burns sit 3rd and 4th.

Tonight’s fast heat will feature Clark SmithTrue SweetserMarcelo Acosta, and Japan’s Kohei Yamamoto.

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Ex Quaker

That last 50 by McLaughlin was hard to watch… Hopefully she has more in the tank tonight.

E Gamble

1:01.9 and 1:10.2….ouch! ?


It happens.

bobo gigi

It will be better tonight but since she’s back she’s used to struggling in her last 50s. Already in yards during the college season it was the case and in long course the problem is more visible.


I think part of the problem is coming back from injury and the other part is the Cal Women’s training. Just my observation. Beisel took 8months off and only trained for 6 weeks and her last 50’looked pretty good. Difference in training philosophy


Specifically what do you know about the Cal Women’s training?




You’ll remember WCs before her injury when she was winning with 50 meters to go and ended up out of the money… she’s someone whose race strategy, over and over, leaves me scratching my head. cf Michael Andrew, Ryan Lochte…

jay ryan

Nice 200 Fly and good meet so far from Mike T., Go Bears!


Worrell has a chance to qualified for 3 fly events, if she made the 100 free relay, that will maximize her total 5 events(6 if added in possible mixed MR) for Worlds.
Although I’m guessing 100 fly 50 fly are her main focus, the question is which one is her second focus? 200 fly or 100 free?


She has a serious range of possibilities – pretty amazing


Could see her medal in 50 and 100 fly.
At Indy, 200 fly and 100 free are right next to each other, me guessing she will be trend for 200 fly a bit?


Well, Worrell is really ahead of everyone, missing is Ella Eastin that decided not to swim 200 fly or the Im’s.

bobo gigi

The goal is not to swim as many events as possible.
Swim the races for which you have the best medal chances.


I’m just being optimism for Worrell. ☺
See my additional comment above.
And I hope you won’t place too many events for one single swimmer in your FINAL prediction. lol


By the way, if she end up 5 events, she has a chance to bring home 5 medals too, 2 individuals 3 relays.
I see US will medal in 4×100 free, mixed MR, MR.

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James formerly competed for the Laurentian Voyageurs in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in February of 2018, placing 11th at the OUA Championships in the 200 IM, and graduated with a bachelor's degree in economics in May. He …

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