2018 Winter Juniors East: Douglass Goes 21.8 on Day 2 Prelims


Boys 500 Free

Top 8:

  1. Walker (SwimMAC) – 4:19.43
  2. Magahey (SwimAtlanta) – 4:19.76
  3. Hill (Gator Swim Club) – 4:22.25
  4. Mitchell (Carmel Swim Club) – 4:22.51
  5. McDonald (Mason Manta Rays) – 4:23.21
  6. Werner (Gator Swim Club) – 4:23.27
  7. Forst (Enfinity Aquatic) – 4:24.50
  8. Grum (Dynamo) – 4:24.60

SwimMAC’s Jack Walker took the top spot out of prelims, cutting three and a half seconds from his lifetime-best with a 4:19.43. He’ll have stiff competition tonight as SwimAtlanta’s Jake Magahey was 4:19.76. Magahey has been 4:16 back in February, which ranked him #5 all-time in the 15-16 age group. Now 17, Magahey could crack the top 33 in his new age group with a lifetime-best tonight.

The top two are pretty well separated from the field heading into tonight. Keep an eye on #3 Julian Hill and #4 Jake Mitchell, both of whom were pretty solid 1:35s on 800 free relays last night.

Girls 500 Free

Top 8:

  1. Smutny (South Florida) – 4:44.72
  2. Sheble (NOVA) – 4:45.26
  3. Klinker (Lexington Dolphins) – 4:45.39
  4. Mull (Mid-Michigan) – 4:45.56
  5. Gormley (Asphalt Green) – 4:45.68
  6. Tadder (Tide Swimming) – 4:46.14
  7. Marquardt (Aquatic Team of Mecklenburg) – 4:47.25
  8. Pash (Carmel) – 4:47.35

South Florida Aquatics’ 18-year-old Mary Smutny is the top qualifier for the girls, without even sniffing her best time. Smutny was 4:42.80 at this meet last year, and only needed a 4:44.72 to take top billing this morning.

Close behind her are four girls in the 4:45 range. Grace Sheble of NOVA of Virginia dropped two and a half seconds to move up to second in 4:45.26 – her previous lifetime-best was from NCSA Juniors in March. Rachel Klinker dropped almost a second and a half to go 4:45.39 for third. Mid-Michigan 16-year-old Lola Mull should be a big factor tonight: she was a smooth 4:45.56 this morning, but went 4:43.35 at this meet last year, faster than any seed time in the field besides Smutny. Meanwhile Isabel Gormley went 4:45.58, another lifetime-best after setting her own PR just last month in this event.

Boys 200 IM

Top 8:

  1. C.Foster (Mason Manta Rays) – 1:43.50
  2. J.Foster (Mason Manta Rays) – 1:44.88
  3. Hils (Lexington Dolphins) – 1:47.70
  4. Wilburn (East Coast) – 1:47.90
  5. Faikish (North Penn) – 1:47.94
  6. Conley (Dayton Raiders) – 1:48.03
  7. Mihm (Allegheny North) – 1:48.33
  8. Hugh Svendsen (SwimMAC) – 1:48.78

Texas commits Carson Foster and Jake Foster are well ahead of the field in the men’s 200 IM. Younger brother Carson was 1:43.50, jumping to 9th all-time for the 17-18 age group after only about a month in that age group. He could move up as high as fourth tonight without even breaking 1:43; the NAG record is a 1:41.39 from David Nolan in 2011.

Jake Foster, 18, was 1:44.88, about seven tenths off his best time, which ranks 18th in 17-18 age group history.

The next pack of swimmers should provide an exciting race tonight. Third finisher Zach Hils of East Coast Aquatics has previously been 1:46.8 and went 1:47.70 this morning. Meanwhile, fourth through sixth all had big drops this morning, most notably Cason Wilburn‘s cut from 1:49.13 to 1:47.90. Outside smoke potential tonight: Rick Mihm qualified just seventh, but has the third-best lifetime-best of this field at 1:46.09.

Girls 200 IM

Top 8:

  1. A.Walsh (Nashville Aquatic Club) – 1:56.05
  2. Douglass (Chelsea Piers) – 1:56.75
  3. Nelson (Nashville Aquatic) – 1:58.20
  4. Sheble (NOVA) – 1:58.50
  5. Ackerman (Michigan Lakeshore) – 1:59.11
  6. Ivey (Laker) – 1:59.17
  7. Hook (TAC Titans) – 1:59.37
  8. Zettel (TAC Titans) – 1:59.69

Nashville Aquatic Club standout Alex Walsh cruised to a 1:56.06 top spot in the 200 IM prelims. She’s still two seconds off her best time, which last year at this meet set the 15-16 NAG record. Now 17, Walsh’s best time would put her 9th in the 17-18 age group. She should jump into at least the top 20 tonight; her prelims time alone ranks her 22nd in the age group’s history, .01 behind Katie Ledecky.

Known more as a sprint freestyler, Kate Douglass of Chelsea Piers Aquatic Club went a new lifetime-best by 1.4 seconds in the IM, blasting a 1:56.75 that should be inside the top 40 in age group history for 17-18s. Douglass is also 17.

Walsh’s Nashville Aquatic Club teammate Ella Nelson went 1:58.20, shaving a tenth off her best. NOVA’s Grace Sheble made her second A final of the morning, swimming back-to-back events and going 1:58.50, a lifetime-best by a few hundredths. In tonight’s final, keep tabs on Kathryn Ackerman (1:59.1 this morning, but she’s been 1:57.2 as recently as Nov 16) and Isabel Ivey (lifetime-best 1:55.77 from last year). Ivey is only a few months away from joining Cal early as one of the top high school senior prospects in the nation.

Boys 50 Free

Top 8:

  1. Brownstead (State College Area Y) – 19.98
  2. Curtiss (Hamiltion Y) – 20.12
  3. Chaney (Mason Manta Rays) – 20.13
  4. Henderson (Star Aquatics) – 20.19
  5. Gregory (Racer X) – 20.20
  6. Alexy (Somerset Hills) – 20.24
  7. Peel (Michigan Lakeshore) – 20.26
  8. Edwards (Enfinity) – 20.27

State College Area Y’s Matt Brownstead became just the 13th 15-16 in USA Swimming history to break 20 seconds in the 50 free. Brownstead, who had been 20.08 previously, was 19.98 for the top spot, moving up to #11 all-time in the age group.

Fellow 16-year-old YMCA swimmer David Curtiss (Hamilton Y) went 20.12 for the second spot. Curtiss has been 19.75 in his career, and should be a major threat to Brownstead tonight.

Mason Manta Rays relay hero Adam Chaney was 20.13, a new lifetime-best by almost a tenth. Chaney was 19.0 on the medley relay last night, suggesting he could be a few tenths or more faster tonight, but he’s also historically been a standout relay swimmer compared to his individual times.

The entire top 8 are separated by just three tenths, setting up a thunderous battle for the title tonight.

Girls 50 Free

Top 8:

  1. Douglass (Chelsea Piers) – 21.87
  2. G.Walsh (Nashville) – 21.98
  3. Curzan (TAC Titans) – 22.15
  4. A.Walsh (Nashville) – 22.42
  5. Parker (Chelsea Piers) – 22.44
  6. Dupre (Mason Manta Rays) – 22.66
  7. Turak (dROP Aquatics) / Ivey (Laker) – 22.68

Chelsea Piers star Kate Douglass went back-to-back with another lifetime-best, cracking 22 seconds for the first time with a 21.87 in the 50 free. She moves to #7 all-time for the 17-18 age group and is the third-best 17-year-old of all-time behind only Simone Manuel (21.70 at 17) and Janet Hu (21.82 at 17).

Meanwhile Gretchen Walsh, already the NAG record-holder in the 15-16 age group, went 21.98 this morning. She’s the only 15-16 to ever break 22, and could challenge her own NAG of 21.85 tonight while racing Douglass.

Stepping down yet one more age group, third qualifier Claire Curzan moved to #2 all-time in the 13-14 age group. Her 22.15 this morning is behind only Gretchen Walsh’s 22.00 (from 2017) in that age group. The 14-year-old Curzan dropped all the way from a 23.07 this morning.

The entire rest of the field is locked between 22.4 and 22.6. Alex Walsh came off the IM to go 22.42, with Douglass’s teammate Maxine Parker going 22.44 behind her. Isabel Ivey also doubled with the 200 IM, and went 22.68 to just sneak into the top 8, a few hundredths off her best.

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Gator Swim Mom
1 year ago

Big morning for UVA commits, Jack Walker – top seed 500, Matt Brownstead – top seed 50 free, Kate douglass – 1st 50 free 2nd 2 im, Max Edwards – top 8 50 free….. Beast of the east?

Reply to  Gator Swim Mom
1 year ago

Ella Nelson’s 3rd place in 200 IM too

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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