2017 Women’s NCAA Championships: Day 2 Finals Live Recap


Day 2 finals of the 2017 Women’s NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships in Indianapolis will kick off shortly at the IUPUI natatorium. Tonight’s competition includes the finals of the 200 free relay, 500 free, 200 IM, 50 free, 400 medley relay, and 1-meter diving.

In the 500 free, Stanford freshman Katie Ledecky will be chasing her own American Record, while Virginia’s defending champion Leah Smith looks to break 4:30 for the first time in her career. Texas’ Madisyn Cox will go up against Stanford’s American Record holder Ella Eastin and Cal All-American Kathleen Baker in the 200 IM. In the final individual race of the night, we’ll see top seed Liz Li (Ohio State) and defending champ Olivia Smoliga (Georgia) take on sprint stars Abbey Weitzeil (Cal) and Simone Manuel (Stanford) in the 50 free.


  • NCAA record: Stanford (2017)- 1:26.15
  • American record: Stanford (2017)- 1:26.15
  • U.S. Open record: Stanford (2017)- 1:26.15
  • Meet Record: Stanford (2017)- 1:26.15
  • 2016 NCAA Champion: Cal- 1:26.80
  1. Cal- 1:25.59
  2. Stanford- 1:25.91
  3. Georgia- 1:26.49

Georgia’s Olivia Smoliga got the Bulldogs off to an early lead with her 21.32, but Stanford quickly roared back with a 21.35 from Lia Neal on the 2nd leg. Cal made a big charge with Amy Bilquist‘s 21.26 on the 3rd leg, while Farida Osman brought the Bears home in a blistering 20.91 to seal the deal.

The Bears finished in a new NCAA Record time of 1:25.59, while Stanford set a new American Record in 1:25.91. Georgia rounded out the top 3, as Chantal Van Landeghem (21.24) ran down NC State’s Krista Duffield (21.76).

Other notable rolling start splits: Ohio State’s Liz Li (21.02), Louisville’s Mallory Comerford (21.21), Stanford’s Ally Howe (21.29), Texas A&M’s Sarah Gibson (21.50), Arizona’s Taylor Garcia (21.68), and Auburn’s Julie Meynen (21.67).


  1. Katie Ledecky (Stanford)- 4:24.06
  2. Leah Smith (Virginia)- 4:28.90
  3. Kennedy Goss (Indiana)- 4:26.13

Katie Ledecky took it up a notch, to say the least, in tonight’s final, wrecking the American and NCAA Records with a blistering 4:24.06. She took it out in a 1:43.46 at the 200 and never looked back, breaking ahead of Virginia’s Leah Smith (4:28.90).

While she was a distant 2nd place, Smith’s swim is very historically significant as she becomes the 2nd swimmer in history to break 4:30 in the women’s 500 free.

A tight battle for 3rd saw Indiana’s Kennedy Goss come home like a train, splitting a 26.26 on the final 50 to out-touch Louisville’s Mallory Comerford (4:36.16). NC State’s Hannah Moore rounded out the top 5 in a personal best 4:36.85.

Stanford freshman Megan Byrnes had a big swim in the B final, clocking a lifetime best 4:37.78 yo outpace Kentucky’s Geena Freriks (4:38.42).


  1. Kathleen Baker (Cal)- 1:51.69
  2. Ella Eastin (Stanford)- 1:52.27
  3. Madisyn Cox (Texas)- 1:52.58

Kathleen Baker built on Cal’s momentum from the 200 free relay, taking down Stanford’s defending champ Ella Eastin in the 200 IM. Baker’s 1:51.69 makes her the 2nd fastest performer in history, and she was just 4 hundredths shy of Eastin’s NCAA and American Records of 1:51.65 from last season’s NCAA meet. Eastin wound up in 2nd, clocking a 1:52.27 to hold off Texas’ Madisyn Cox (1:52.58).

Texas A&M’s Sydney Pickrem (1:53.30) and Bethany Galat (1:54.16) turned in a pair of personal best times to round out the top 5 for the Aggies. USC freshman Louise Hansson (1:54.79) and Kentucky freshman Asia Seidt (1:55.19) came in at 7th and 8th behind NC State All-American Alexia Zevnik (1:54.74).

Tennessee freshman Meghan Small had a big swim in the B final, clocking in at a personal best 1:53.31 for 9th place.


  1. Simone Manuel (Stanford)- 21.17
  2. Olivia Smoliga (Georgia)- 21.27
  3. Liz Li (Ohio State)- 21.29

Ohio State’s Liz Li got the early lead, but Stanford’s Simone Manuel roared home to win the title in 21.17, just missing the American Record by 5 hundredths and setting a new NCAA Records. Li held on for 3rd, while Georgia’s Olivia Smoliga, the former NCAA Record holder, ran her down for 2nd.

Cal wound up with the next 3 places, as Farida Osman (21.38), Abbey Weitzeil (21.58), and Maddie Murphy (21.76) took 4th through 6th respectively.UNC’s Caroline Baldwin (21.82) out-touched Georgia’s Chantal Van Landeghem (21.85) for 7th.

Notable, Stanford’s Lia Neal swam a personal best 21.65 to win the B final.


  1. Alison Gibson- 332.60
  2. Sarah Bacon- 326.50
  3. Maria Polyakova- 325.80

Texas freshman Alison Gibson kicked off her first NCAA Championships with a title in the 1-meter diving event. Minnesota’s Sarah Bacon picked up 2nd place, while UCLA’s Maria Polyakova rounded out the podium. Stanford got a boost from Kassidy Cook (305.65) who finished 8th in the final.


  • NCAA record: Stanford (2016)- 3:26.14
  • American record: Team USA (2016)- 3:25.60
  • U.S. Open record: Team USA (2016)- 3:25.60
  • Meet Record: Stanford (2016)- 3:26.14
  • 2016 NCAA Champion: Stanford- 3:26.14
  1. Stanford- 3:26.35
  2. Texas A&M- 3:27.60
  3. Texas- 3:27.74

Cal’s Kathleen Baker led them off in the 2nd fastest 100 back of all time, clocking in at 49.80, but Stanford pulled up with Kim Williams (58.51) on the breast leg. Janet Hu surged to a 50.27 fly split to get the Cardinal even closer. It came down to the touch, as Lia Neal (46.15) came up just short to Cal’s Abbey Weitzeil (45.96). In the end, however, Cal was DQed after an early takeoff on the final exchange, making Stanford the victor.

*NOTE: Despite Cal’s disqualification, Baker’s split will not be nullified per the NCAA rulebook, meaning she is still the 2nd fastest performer of all time after braking Natalie Coughlin’s 15-year-old school record on the leadoff split.*

Indiana’s Lilly King registered a 56.17 breaststroke split, marking the fastest split in history as the team finished 5th. Louisville came in 4th as Mallory Comerford anchored in a blazing 46.13, once again posting the fastest split of the field. USC freshman Louise Hansson blasted a 49.78 to give the Trojans the fastest fly split of the field.


  1. Stanford                          213   2. California                        136
  3. Texas                             119   4. Georgia                           112
  5. Texas A&M                         108   6. Louisville                         93
  7. Michigan                           74   8. NC State                           71
  9. Southern Cali                      68  10. Indiana                            61
 11. Virginia                           57  12. Minnesota                          52
 13. Wisconsin                          49  14. Arizona                          47.5
 15. Kentucky                           46  16. Missouri                           34
 17. Auburn                             29  18. Ohio St                            27
 19. UCLA                               22  20. UNC                                18
 21. Lsu                                14  22. Nevada                             13
 23. Miami (Oh)                         12  24. Tennessee                          11
 25. Boise St                           10  26. Purdue                              7
 27. Umbc (W)                            5  28. Denver                              4
 28. Florida Gulf                        4  30. Alabama                           3.5
 31. Massachusetts                       2  31. Virginia Tech                       2
 33. Air Force (W)                       1  33. Florida St                          1

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7 years ago

Anyone else having issue with the live stream of the NCAA women’s prelims this morning?

Swin Fan
7 years ago

Anyone else having issue with teh live stream this morning?

7 years ago

To the folks dogging her– Abbey W. is a freshman, i.e. huge adjustment. And she came off recent health challenges. She’s a fighter and she’ll figure it out. Looking for a nice 26 point breast split in the 200 medley.

bobo gigi
7 years ago

Quick thoughts. Hard to comment races I’ve not watched. 🙂

Based on results and as I expected, Olivia Smoliga peaks at the right time. She was not much rested at SECs.
So far Cal girls swim very well and also peak at the right time. Great coaching. I will never understand the McKeever bashing. I just try to stay honest and talk about facts. When Cal girls underperform it’s also the coaches’ fault. So when they perform well it’s also thanks to the coaches. Our comments must remain fair to be credible. Kathleen Baker is in the shape of her life. 1.51.65 in the 200 IM and 49.80 on backstroke to lead-off the medley relay! But her teammates look… Read more »

Reply to  bobo gigi
7 years ago

I agree with a lot of what you said, although Lilly King disappointed me in the 2 IM. I would like to see her be good at something other than 1/2 breast. That’s how most breaststrokers are, and I think she is better than just those two events (also a 32 split on the breaststroke….)

7 years ago

Too much to say but I’ll say this. Simone Manuel is freakin amazing. CLUTCH! Please prepare for the first 45 second flat start 100 free by a woman.

Anna Zhou
7 years ago

where can I watch the races on demand? because the sound doesnt work on that site :/

7 years ago

Where’s USC?

7 years ago

Just curious – I saw in prelims that 2 swimmers, Lauren Case and Genevieve Mille, tied for 16th spot in the 500 free in prelims. What a bummer! Swimswam in the prelim report said that they could do a swim off, but I am curious did they actually do a swim off for that 16th spot or did they flip a coin. I was not aware that a swim off was optional and you could use some other method to decide who gets that 16th spot. If they actually did the swim off then they would swim the 500 3 times in 1 day!!! Or at least the winner would, because she would swim it the 3rd time in the… Read more »

Reply to  SwimFan
7 years ago

They swam off

About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona (2013-2015) and the University of Florida (2011-2013). While her college swimming career left a bit to be desired, her Snapchat chin selfies and hot takes on Twitter do not disappoint. She's also a high school graduate of The …

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