2018 Speedo Junior Nationals: Day 2 Prelims Live Recap


Brothers Jake and Carson Foster will swim side-by-side in the final heat of the 400 IM this morning, with younger brother Carson also leading the 200 back heats.

In between, we’ve got Amalie Fackenthal heading up the girls 100 free in search of a 54-second swim, Grace Sheble holding the top 400 IM seed after taking 18th at last week’s senior nationals and Terrapins teammates Alexei Sancov and Andrei Minakov battling for the top 100 free spot. The session will kick off with the girls 200 back and top seed Sinclair Larson.

Keep refreshing this page for live, event-by-event updates of each race as it happens.

Girls 200 Back – Prelims

  • Jr World: 2:06.43, Regan Smith (USA), 2018
  • Meet: 2:09.04, Kylie Stewart, 2013

Top 8 qualifiers:

  1. Crisera – 2:13.17
  2. Poole – 2:13.43
  3. Alons – 2:14.05
  4. Newman – 2:14.59
  5. Larson – 2:14.87
  6. Behm – 2:15.24
  7. Lenihan – 2:15.54
  8. Davis – 2:15.62

17-year-old Alexandra Crisera ran away with the first circle-seeded heat, dropping eight tenths of a second and putting up a 2:13.17 that will stand as the top prelims swim for Beach Cities Swimming out of California.

Lauren Poole won the next heat, rattling Crisera’s time but not breaking it in 2:13.43 That’s a huge drop of almost two seconds for the North Baltimore 17-year-old. Those two are the top qualifiers by quite a bit, though final heat winner Kylee Alons (2:14.05) isn’t far behind.

Top-seeded Sinclair Larson is into the final, but only in 5th after going 2:14.87, about two seconds off her seed. Mara Newman is in between. 6th is 15-year-old Annie Behm, who will be the youngest A finalist and also moves into the all-time top 100 in the 15-16 age group with a 2:15.24.

Boys 200 Back – Prelims

  • Jr World: 1:55.14, Kliment Kolesnikov (RUS), 2017
  • Meet: 1:58.83, Alex Katz, 2013

Top 8 qualifiers:

  1. C. Foster – 1:59.13
  2. Grant – 2:00.35
  3. Harder – 2:01.22
  4. Walsh – 2:01.41
  5. Hayes – 2:02.59
  6. Gallagher – 2:03.33
  7. Daigle – 2:03.43
  8. Homans – 2:03.54

Swimming in his first of three scheduled prelims swims today, 16-year-old Carson Foster was the runaway top qualifier with a 1:59.13 in the 200 back. He’s the only one to break two minutes this morning, though it was well off his lifetime-best of 1:57.70 set last week at the senior national meet.

Will Grant is right on the cusp of breaking two minutes for the first time. He dropped about eight tenths from his best to go 2:00.35 and has a real shot to get under the barrier tonight. He’s followed by a pair of 18-year-olds: Ethan Harder and Keegan Walsh. Harder was 2:00.12 at Juniors last year and 2:00.66 at senior nationals last week, so he’s looking for his first sub-2 swim tonight as well.

Nathan Hayes will be the youngest A finalist at 16; he went 2:02.59 this morning. The rest of the A heat were in the 2:03s, with 6th through 11th place separated by just six tenths of a second.

Girls 100 Free – Prelims

  • Jr World: 52.70, Penny Oleksiak (CAN), 2016
  • Meet: 54.03, Missy Franklin, 2009

Top 8 qualifiers:

  1. Regenauer – 55.73
  2. Pearson – 56.20
  3. Rothrock – 56.46
  4. Fackenthal – 56.50
  5. Spitz – 56.50
  6. Pish – 56.57
  7. Rudolph – 56.59
  8. Gemmell – 56.62

Once again, the winner of the first girls circle-seeded heat remained the class of the field through the event’s conclusion. 16-year-old Christiana Regenauer cut two tenths of a second to go 55.73 and qualify first among the girls in the 100 free. She’s the only swimmer under 56 and managed to beat the incoming seeds of everyone but top-ranked Amalie Fackenthal.

Samantha Pearson – also 16 – was second in 56.20, with Trude Rothrock (56.46) just behind. Fackenthal fell to 4th this morning, but should have something left in the tank to challenge her lifetime-best 55.61 tonight.

17-year-old Ayla Spitz (56.56), 18-year-old Melissa Pish (56.57) and 16-year-old Janelle Rudolph (56.59) are close behind in what could be a hotly-contested final field tonight. And at the tail of the A final is Erin Gemmell, just 13 years old out of Nation’s Capital. She went 56.62 to move up from 24th to 17th all-time in the girls 13-14 age group. The NAG record is still a ways away (54.03 from Missy Franklin), but getting into the 55s tonight would move Gemmell up into the top 4.

Boys 100 Free – Prelims

  • Jr World: 47.58, Kyle Chalmers (AUS), 2016
  • Meet: 49.06, Vladimir Morozov, 2010

Top 8 qualifiers:

  1. Minakov – 49.72
  2. Sancov – 50.13
  3. Cook-Weeks – 50.43
  4. Willenbring – 50.48
  5. Walker – 50.66
  6. Bratanov – 50.76
  7. Stensby – 50.81
  8. Madej – 50.97

Andrei Minakov and Alexei Sancov of the Terrapins easily paced the men’s 100 free prelims in showings of 49.72 and 50.13 respectively, with Skyler Cook-Weeks the top American in 50.43.

Minakov, a Russian, holds a best of 49.24 from just under a month ago at the European Junior Championships, while Sancov was a 49.01 at the same meet in 2017. Cook-Weeks dropped over a second off his previous best of 51.47.

Matthew Willenbring, who has been as fast as 49.57, qualified 4th in 50.48.

Girls 400 IM – Prelims

  • Jr World: 4:35,69*, Zhou Min (CHN), 2014
  • Meet: 4:38.97, Ella Eastin, 2013

*record unratified

Top 8 qualifiers:

  1. Sheble – 4:47.48
  2. Tuggle – 4:48.72
  3. Poole – 4:49.03
  4. Gormley – 4:49.39
  5. Hurt – 4:50.47
  6. Sims – 4:51.31
  7. McCormick – 4:51.80
  8. Shelton / Smith – 4:51.97

15-year-old Grace Sheble from Nova of Virginia won the last heat to take the top seed in the women’s 400 IM, clocking in at 4:47.48. Sheble swam a lifetime best of 4:46.47 last week at U.S. Nationals.

14-year-old Claire Tuggle of the Clovis Swim Club won the penultimate heat in a time of 4:48.72 for 2nd overall, dropping four seconds from her previous best (4:53.04) and putting her 12th all-time in the 13-14 age group. Lauren Poole of North Baltimore was right behind her in the heat in 4:49.03, also dropping four seconds from her PB for 3rd.

Samantha Shelton and Summer Smith tied for 8th in 4:51.97, setting up a swim-off for a spot in the A-final barring any scratches. Shelton of SoCal has been as fast as 4:48.47 back in June, while Smith of Bluefish was 4:51.74 in mid-July.

Boys 400 IM – Prelims

  • Jr World: 4:14.00, Sean Grieshop (USA), 2016
  • Meet: 4:14.51, Gunnar Bentz, 2013

Top 8 qualifiers:

  1. Louser – 4:21.82
  2. Vargas – 4:22.65
  3. J. Foster – 4:23.15
  4. Perera – 4:24.22
  5. Arroyo – 4:24.81
  6. Puskovitch – 4:25.27
  7. Tan – 4:26.57
  8. Winton – 4:26.69

17-year-old Jason Louser of the Long Island Swim Team swam just over a second off his lifetime best to qualify 1st into the men’s 400 IM final in a time of 4:21.82. Louser, who won the last heat over 3rd seed Jake Foster (4:23.15), was 4:20.70 last week at U.S. Nationals.

Kevin Vargas also set his lifetime best in the same pool last week at Nats in 4:18.58, and won the penultimate heat for the 2nd seed overall in 4:22.65.

#2 seed coming in Jarod Arroyo cruised to the 5th fastest time in 4:24.81, while the top seeded Carson Foster didn’t show for his heat. Also of note, Ivan Puskovitch had an impressive three-second drop from his 2016 best after winning the mile last night. He qualifies 6th in 4:25.27.

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4 years ago

In case usaswimming acts dumb again.

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

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