2019 U.S. National Championships: Day 1 Finals Preview


Women’s 200 Fly

As of this season, the women’s 200 fly has been exploding with promising teens to take over the future generation of the event. Leading the way is current backstroke world record-holder Regan Smith (Riptide), who led prelims with a 2:09.04. Her season best of 2:08.58 is comfortably in 4th on the national team top 6, however, her lifetime best of 2:07.42 ranks #4 all-time in 17-18 age group history, right behind Katie McLaughlin’s NAG of 2:06.95.

With Smith declining her spot from Junior Worlds, the next eligible athlete is 16-year-old Magnolia swimmer Lillie Nordmann, who comes in as the second seed with a 2:09.21. Other than securing her spot on the Junior Worlds team, Nordmann has a shot at taking down Kelsi Dahlia‘s 2:09.09 season best to write her name on the national team roster.

Men’s 200 Fly

17-year-old Luca Urlando of DART Swimming has already wrote his name on the 17-18 NAG with a 1:53.84. This morning, Urlando cruised to the top spot with a 1:55.55. With his top spot nearly 2 second ahead of Zach Harting (1:55.26), all Urlando has left to do is secure his spot on the Junior Worlds team.

Swimming next to Urlando is Lousiville’s Nicolas Albiero, who swam a US #6 time of 1:56.91. Yet that won’t be enough for Albiero as Miles Smachlo (1:56.95), Trenton Julian (1:56.18), and 2018 US national champ Justin Wright (1:57.40) will all be gunning for that spot for the National team roster with Albiero.

Women’s 100 Free

Coming hot off of Worlds, Abbey Weitzeil stormed to the top of the prelims swims with a US #2 time of 53.47. The rest of the field tonight will all be fending for the #6 spot on the national team roster. Currently, Erika Brown holds that spot with a 54.36. This morning, Brown was a 54.75, right behind Team Elite’s Catie DeLoof (54.67).

With 16-year-old Gretchen Walsh (54.78) of Nashville the lone eligible Junior Worlds swimmer in the A-final, it will be down to fellow 16-year-olds Arlington’s Torri Huske (55.43) and unattached Amy Tang (55.48) for the 2nd individual spot in the 100 free.

Men’s 100 Free

With Ryan Held leading the pack with his US Open record of 47.43, he will be a definite roster member behind Caeleb Dressel in the 100 free. Maxime Rooney‘s morning swim of 47.75 puts him at 3rd in the current top 6 rankings to likely ensure his spot on the roster. Behind Blake Pieroni (47.87) and Zach Apple (48.01) is #3 seed into the final Tate Jackson (48.12).

Men’s 100 free current top 6

  1. Caeleb Dressel 46.96
  2. Ryan Held 47.43*
  3. Maxime Rooney 47.75*
  4. Blake Pieroni 47.87
  5. Zach Apple 48.01
  6. Tate Jackson 48.12*

*swam this morning

Behind Jackson are three more men looking to write their names on the national roster from their morning swims: Dean Farris (48.21), Robert Howard (48.37), and Jack Conger (48.47).

Women’s 800 Free

Entered as the top seed is open water Worlds medalist Haley Anderson (8:24.13), followed by Ally McHugh (8:24.22), and Ashley Twichell (8:28.16). Katie Ledecky and Leah Smith‘s spots are locked in for the 800 free top 6, yet the top 3 swimmers into tonight’s final all have a shot at putting themselves into the top 6 times.

Men’s 1500 Free

Only one man has broken 15 minutes this season in the 1500 free, Jordan Wilimovsky (14:59.94). Into tonight’s final, both Zane Grothe (14:48.40) and Bobby Finke (14:48.70) are the lone 2 men under the 15-minute barrier. After a disappointing performance at Worlds, Finke has a shot at taking the national title and earning a spot into the top 6. The time to beat is David Heron‘s 15:19.74 for Finke to write his name on the national team roster.

In This Story

Leave a Reply

Notify of

oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Lane 8
3 years ago

She could very well beat that, or at least get really close to it.

WV Swammer
3 years ago

Luca- 1:53.3
Smith- 2:06.5
Weitzel- 53.0
Held- 47.3

M 100 free will be an absolute bloodbath, but interested to see how many guys drop from a very fast prelim session.
I could see Luca being anywhere between 1:52-mid to 1:54-low depending on how much he’s rested considering he was essentially a lock for World Juniors already. Will be a fun night!

Lane 8
Reply to  WV Swammer
3 years ago

Excitement building up…

Lane 8
3 years ago

Luca was 2:00.32 in prelims of Clovis. He could really throw down something.

Reply to  Lane 8
3 years ago

You cant go 2:00 at nats and be in the A final. I’m sure he put a considerable bit more effort into this prelims swim.

Reply to  Lane 8
3 years ago

2:00 – 7 = 1:53
1:55 – 7 = 1:48

Watch out Milak!!

About Nick Pecoraro

Nick Pecoraro

Nick Pecoraro started swimming at age 11, instantly becoming drawn to the sport. He was a breaststroker and IMer when competing. After joining SwimSwam, the site has become an outlet for him to research and learn about competitive swimming and experience the sport through a new lenses. He graduated in …

Read More »