2018 Women’s NCAA Championships: Day 3 Prelims Live Recap


Swimmers are gearing up for the second prelims session of the 2018 Women’s NCAA Championships in Columbus, Ohio. Today’s races include the 400 IM, 100 fly, 200 free, 100 breast, 100 back, and 200 medley relay. Stanford’s Katie Ledecky and Ella Eastin will set up a showdown in the 400 IM tonight, while Ally HoweBeata Nelson, Kathleen Baker, and Janet Hu will challenge the :50 barrier in the 100 back. Mallory Comerford will try for sub-1:40 after going 1:39.14 on her relay Wednesday night. We’ll also see Lilly King in her individual 100 breast after going the fastest relay split ever last night. Erika Brown will shoot for another sub-:50 in the 100 fly.

Click here to view the full heat sheet.


  • NCAA Record: Katie Ledecky (Stanford), 2018, 3:56.53
  • American Record: Katie Ledecky (Stanford), 2018, 3:56.53
  • Championship Record: Katinka Hosszu (USC), 2012, 3:56.54
  • 2017 Champion: Ella Eastin (Stanford), 4:57.57

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Ella Eastin (Stanford)- 4:01.49
  2. Katie Ledecky (Stanford)- 4:01.72
  3. Sydney Pickrem (Texas A&M)- 4:03.09
  4. Meg Bailey (Ohio State)- 4:03.95
  5. Brooke Forde (Stanford)- 4:04.95
  6. Sharli Brady (Missouri)- 4:04.96
  7. Bethany Galat (Texas A&M)- 4:04.98
  8. Sarah Darcel (Cal)- 4:05.09

Stanford’s Ella Eastin held a commanding lead in the penultimate heat, swimming a smooth 4:01.49. She was 3 seconds ahead, with Texas A&M’s Bethany Galat touching 2nd in 4:04.98. Eastin’s teammate Katie Ledecky was just a few tenths shy of her with a 4:01.72 to win the last heat, setting them up to battle side-by-side in the final. Another Cardinal swimmer, Brooke Forde, came in 2nd in that heat with a 4:04.95, coming from behind to out-touch Mizzou’s Sharli Brady by a hundredth.

Texas A&M’s Sydney Pickrem led the first circle seeded heat in 4:03.09, followed by Ohio State’s Meg Bailey (4:03.95). That was a best by almost a second for Bailey. Cal’s Sarah Darcel was 3rd in that heat with a 4:05.09.

Texas’ Evie Pfeifer rolled to a 4:06.37 in heat 3, knocking 2 seconds off her former best.


  • NCAA Record: Kelsi Worrell (Louisville), 2016, 49.43
  • American Record: Kelsi Worrell (Louisville), 2016, 49.43
  • Championship Record: Kelsi Worrell (Louisville), 2016, 49.43
  • 2017 Champion: Farida Osman (Cal), 50.05

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Louise Hansson (USC)- 49.90
  2. Noemie Thomas (Cal)- 50.76
  3. Erika Brown (Tennessee)- 50.83
  4. Grace Oglesby (Louisville)- 51.07
  5. Janet Hu (Stanford)- 51.09
  6. Katie McLaughlin (Cal)- 51.24
  7. Liz Li (Ohio State)- 51.25
  8. Ann Ochitwa (Missouri)- 51.57

USC’s Louise Hansson joined the sub-50 club this morning, winning heat 6 in 49.90. She’ll battle with Tennessee’s Erika Brown in the final, making it the first time we’ve seen 2 women with lifetime bests in the 49-range going head-to-head. Brown won the final heat this morning in 50.83, followed by Auburn’s Haley Black (51.61). Though Black was 2nd in the heat, she came up short of the top 8 at 9th.

Cal’s Noemie Thomas is the 2nd seed, finishing behind Hansson in her heat with a 50.76. Teammate Katie McLaughlin qualified 6th, a hundredth ahead of Ohio State’s Liz Li. Missouri’s Ann Ochitwa clipped her season best to qualify for the final in 51.57. That’s the fastest she’s been in this event since 2015.

Stanford’s Janet Hu took the early lead in heat 5, but Louisville’s Grace Oglesby ran her down, out-touching Hu 51.07 to 51.09 at the finish. They each earned a top 5 spot.


  • NCAA Record: Missy Franklin (Cal), 2015, 1:39.10
  • American Record: Missy Franklin (Cal), 2015, 1:39.10
  • Championship Record: Missy Franklin (Cal), 2015, 1:39.10
  • 2017 Champion: Katie Ledecky (Stanford)/Mallory Comerford (Louisville), 1:40.36

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Mallory Comerford (Louisville)- 1:41.61
  2. Siobhan Haughey (Michigan)- 1:43.04
  3. Simone Manuel (Stanford)- 1:43.08
  4. Robin Neumann (Cal)- 1:43.38
  5. Claire Rasmus (Texas A&M)- 1:43.49
  6. (T-6) Megan Moroney (Virginia)- 1:43.68
  7. (T-6) Katie Drabot (Stanford)- 1:43.68
  8. Katie McLaughlin (Cal)- 1:43.71

Michigan’s Siobhan Haughey set the pace in heat 5, winning in 1:43.04. Cal’s Robin Neumann started to close in on her on the final 50, but came up short in 1:43.38. Virginia’s Jenn Marrkand was 3rd there in 1:43.96.

Louisville’s Mallory Comerford took over the leaderboard in heat 6. She led from start to finish, but really distanced herself from the field on the back half as she touched in 1:41.61. Texas A&M’s Claire Rasmus (1:43.49) clipped Stanford’s Katie Drabot (1:43.68) for 2nd in that heat.

Stanford’s Simone Manuel came up with the early lead, holding steady down the stretch in 1:43.08. Virginia’s Megan Moroney reached in at 1:43.68 to out-touch Cal’s Katie McLaughlin (1:43.71) for 2nd. McLaughlin had a quick turnaround after the 100 fly, but snuck into the final at 8th overall.


Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Lilly King (Indiana)- 57.35
  2. Delaney Duncan (EMU)- 58.36
  3. Lindsey Kozelsky (Minnesota)- 58.41
  4. Anna Belousova (Texas A&M)- 59.07
  5. Miranda Tucker (Michigan)- 59.25
  6. Jinq En Phee (Purdue)- 59.32
  7. Silja Kansakoski (ASU)- 59.34
  8. Franziska Weidner (Hawaii)- 59.35

Minnesota’s Lindsey Kozelsky took over the leaderboard in heat 5, followed by Texas A&M freshman Anna Belousova (59.07). Purdue’s Jinq En Phee (59.32) and Hawaii’s Franziska Weidner(59.35) clipped their bests in that heat to earn spots in the final.

Indiana’s Lilly King answered back, blowing that time away in the next heat. She trailed Eastern Michigan’s Delaney Duncan through the front half, but surged ahead on the last lap to win it in 57.35. Duncan wound up 2nd in a personal best 58.36.

Michigan’s Miranda Tucker reached in to win heat 4, using her front-end speed to edge out USC’s Riley Scott (59.41).


Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Beata Nelson (Wisconsin)- 50.61
  2. Ally Howe (Stanford)- 50.64
  3. Elise Haan (NC State)- 50.75
  4. Kathleen Baker (Cal)- 50.77
  5. Janet Hu (Stanford)- 50.82
  6. Hannah Stevens (Missouri)- 51.23
  7. Ally Rockett (Indiana)- 51.25
  8. Claire Adams (Texas)- 51.27

Wisconsin’s Beata Nelson and Stanford’s American Record holder Ally Howe battled in the final heat, with Nelson Holding off Howe into the finish, 50.61 to 50.64.Missouri’s Hannah Stevens reached in 3rd, while Indiana’s Ally Rockett matched her best for a close 4th.

Cal’s Kathleen Baker, the defending NCAA Champion, topped her heat by half a second in 50.77. Texas’ Claire Adams was a 51.27 behind her, sneaking into the final at 8th overall.

NC State’s Elise Haan was slightly faster than Baker as she won heat 6, tying her lifetime best in 50.75 to out-touch Stanford’s Janet Hu (50.82). Hu, who was on the back end of her 100 fly/100 back double, qualified 5th for tonight. Cal’s Amy Bilquist touched behind them in 51.36, just missing the final at 9th place.


  • NCAA Record: Cal, 2017, 1:34.10
  • American Record: Stanford, 2016, 1:34.15
  • Championship Record: Cal, 2017, 1:34.10
  • 2017 Champion: Cal, 1:34.10

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Indiana- 1:35.12
  2. Cal- 1:35.55
  3. Stanford- 1:36.02
  4. Minnesota- 1:36.05
  5. USC- 1:36.20
  6. Texas A&M- 1:36.28
  7. Louisville- 1:37.01
  8. Texas- 1:37.04

Indiana qualified as top seed for the final, with backstroker Ally Rockett (23.64) and breaststroker Lilly King (26.08) giving the Hoosiers the fastest splits of the field in their respective strokes. Cal was the only other team to crack 1:36 this morning, with Kathleen Baker tying Rockett for the fastest back split. The fastest fly split of the field came from USC’s Louise Hansson (22.36). Texas A&M’s Béryl Gastaldello (21.36) had the fastest anchor leg.

At the conclusion of the event, Virginia Tech was given a re-swim. No details were given, but the Hokies improved their time and qualified 9th for the final. They went from a 1:37.95 in their heat to a 1:37.13 on the re-swim, narrowly missing the top 8.

Women’s 3-Meter Diving:

  • NCAA Record: Christina Loukas (Indiana), 2009, 437.75
  • Championship Record: Christina Loukas (Indiana), 2009, 437.75
  1. Brooke Schultz (Arkansas) – 384.60
  2. Sarah Bacon (Minnesota) – 369.90
  3. Sharae Zheng (Nevada) – 363.60
  4. Samantha Bromberg (Texas) – 359.40
  5. Pei Lin (Miami) – 350.85
  6. Julia Vincent (South Carolina) – 350.50
  7. Jessica Parratto (Indiana) – 342.30
  8. Kassidy Cook (Stanford) – 337.75


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4 years ago

Cal and Stanford had a HUGE morning.

4 years ago

Not to belabor the point, but technically the TN relay should have been DQ’ed. According to the NCAA swimming rule book, “In an event designated freestyle, the swimmer may swim any style, except that in a medley relay or an individual medley event, freestyle means any style other than butterfly, breaststroke or backstroke.” I know this doesn’t make a difference in terms of points, but it makes a difference in terms of clarifying the rules.

Reply to  DLSwim
4 years ago

Agreed, rules should be applied evenly across the board. Such a strange situation, though.

Reply to  DLSwim
4 years ago

Not an excuse, but the one stroke official on the side is not really looking at stroke too hard on freestyle and guessing it just got missed. The 15 m official cannot make the call as not within jurisdiction nor do I believe can the turn judge at the other end..

Reply to  Fred
4 years ago

Ikr, it’s national champs why would an official be “looking at stroke too hard”?

Reply to  JimSwim
4 years ago

not saying it is right, but not really anything to see on freestyle and he/she may have just tuned out since a 15 m underwater followed by a few strokes. Should not happen.

Becky D
Reply to  DLSwim
4 years ago

I DQd a MR as a 13 yo after doing ONE STROKE of fly. I can’t believe a whole 25 could slip by without being called.

Reply to  Becky D
4 years ago

would not have been a whole 25, but the time period from surfacing near the 15 m mark, then less than 10 yards to the turn. should not have been missed but appears that was the case with the stroke official on the side and the deck referee.

ole 99
Reply to  DLSwim
4 years ago

I’d probably only get worked up about this if they had actually qualified for finals. its not like her swimming fly helped them go faster.

4 years ago

Prediction for tonight
400 IM
1. Eastin 3:55.60
2. Ledecky 3:56.12
3. Pickrem 3:58.31
100 fly
1. Hansson 49.57
2. Brown 49.85
3. Hu 50.28
200 free
1. Comerford 1:39.77
2. Manuel 1:40.08
3. Haugley 1:40.71
100 breast
1. King 56.28
2. Kozelsky 57.86
3. Duncan 57.91
100 back
1. Nelson 49.56
2. Baker 49.78
3. Hu 49.97
200 medley relay
1. Indiana 1:33.86
2. Stanford 1:33.95
3. Cal 1:34.05

Reply to  IM FAN
4 years ago

I think Ledecky and Simonster get the job done

4 years ago

Sources at the meet say the officials forgot to take the wedges out after backstroke and tech appealed thus the re swim. Doesn’t make sense because it’s a 50 so they’ve just have to finish not flip and the breastroker presumably has to take it off to get on the block. Apparently sam Kendrick’s was talking over the loud speaker trying to get the officials attention.

Re: Tennessee: source said officials didn’t see Erika’s swim fly the first lap thus no DQ.

Ex Quaker
Reply to  Acc85
4 years ago

Good to know the officials are paying close attention to the meet.

Reply to  Ex Quaker
4 years ago

Meet officials have been poor in my experience swimming in college. At my conference meet this year there were 6 officials on deck for 8 lane heats.

Reply to  Acc85
4 years ago

Isn’t there one official on each side of the pool in every lane. What is going on lolz. How do they not see a girl swimming butterfly? They saw it

Reply to  Acc85
4 years ago

That is not the reason for Virgini Tech’s re-swim.

4 years ago

Speculating: VT reswim had something to do with Brown swimming fly on the anchor right next to them (lane 5 and 6). Did she go under the lane line? She did not swim right down the middle.

4 years ago

Wow. Stunning to see Brown’s lapse in focus. Swimming the wrong stroke happens when you’re really keyed up, distracted and operating on auto-pilot. That mistake dropped them from an A final position to nowhere. Not even Dressel can get away with swimming the wrong stroke. I’ve never seen it happen before at an NCAA meet. If she can brush it off and refocus and have a positive mindset for the 100 fly final, she will certainly prove her mettle. Anything can happen.

Reply to  fluidg
4 years ago

Swimming the “wrong stroke” doesn’t happen. Inexcusable.

Go Hoosiers!
Reply to  Marmot
4 years ago

I’m wondering how soon after she started swimming did she realize she was doing the wrong stroke? First stroke of fly? First breath? At the turn?

Steve Nolan
Reply to  fluidg
4 years ago

Dressel could totally swim a 25 fly / 75 free and still win the 100 free.

Also I must find this live stream.

Reply to  Steve Nolan
4 years ago

Not with an open turn.

4 years ago

So in the Medley relay you can swim half of the freestyle leg butterfly, but you can’t underwater kick on your back at all during the freestyle leg apparently. Seems like a bit of an inconsistency if you ask me.

4 years ago

Doesn’t matter that Tennessee didn’t make it back they need to be DQd under the Lochte rule. If not then it further proves how absurd this rule really is.

Reply to  Acc85
4 years ago

That was my thought as well. If one kick on the back is backstroke, then a 25 fly should be butterfly.

Reply to  Acc85
4 years ago

Apparently the officials did not see her swim fly hence the no DQ. Not kidding. Had they made the call it would definitely have been a DQ they just failed to see it.

Reply to  Acc85
4 years ago

The medley relay rule isn’t actually the Lochte rule. They should be dq’d though.

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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