2019 W. NCAAs: Beata Nelson Rewrites Every 100 Back Record in 49.18


After the fastest time in history had been lowered by mere hundredths of a second the last three times it was improved upon, Wisconsin’s Beata Nelson obliterated the 100 back American, NCAA, and US Open record at the 2019 Women’s Division I NCAA Championships Friday night, going 49.18.

Nelson won the race by three-quarters of a second, splitting 23.76/25.42. Taking second was Cal’s Amy Bilquist in 50.05, making her the 1oth-fastest performer in history, and in third was Stanford’s Taylor Ruck in 50.34.

Seventeen-year-old Regan Smith set the American record just 12 days ago at 49.66, meaning Nelson took off .48 seconds. Nelson cruised to a 50.07 in prelims Friday and looked primed for the record, especially given her stunning 200 IM performance (1:50.79) Thursday night.

Nelson had previously set the American record earlier this season when she went 49.67 at the Texas Hall of Fame Invite in November. She now owns five of the top 100 back swims in history.

Split Comparison

Nelson 2018 record Smith 2019 record
Nelson 2019 record
24.02 24.29 23.76
25.65 25.37 25.42
Final: 49.67 Final: 49.66 Final: 49.18

Top 10 Performers of All Time: SCY 100 back

Place Swimmer Time
1 Beata Nelson 49.18
2 Regan Smith 49.66
3 Ally Howe 49.69
4 Kathleen Baker 49.80
5 Janet Hu 49.93
6 Natalie Coughlin 49.97
7 Courtney Bartholomew 50.01
8 Rachel Bootsma 50.03
9 Olivia Smoliga 50.04
10 Amy Bilquist 50.05

Top 10 Performers of All Time: SCY 100 back

Place Swimmer Time
1 Beata Nelson 49.18
2 Regan Smith 49.66
3 Beata Nelson 49.67
4 Ally Howe 49.69
5 Ally Howe 49.7
6 Regan Smith 49.74
7 Regan Smith 49.77
8 Beata Nelson 49.78
9 Kathleen Baker 49.8
10 Beata Nelson 49.83 (T-10)
10 Beata Nelson 49.83 (T-10)

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2 for 2 Ms. Nelson! On Wisconsin! Look forward to another spectacular swim tomorrow. Yuri this year + New Pool Next Year + Senior Nelson Next Year = Excited Badger Swim Fans!


Sad Tar Heel


Great swim Beata! She deserves all the accolades. But the reality is that very few Wisconsin swimmers went best times this year, men or women. Terrible year for the program overall.


Doubt it

Andrew Mering

The Wisconsin women didn’t have great improvement numbers, but the men’s improvement numbers were well above average at Big 10’s. Here’s the data:




Truly a massacre of a swim.

Coach Mike 1952

She rode so high up in the water, it was exciting to watch & see if she would actually go under 49.

About Torrey Hart

Torrey Hart

Torrey is from Oakland, CA, and majored in media studies and American studies at Claremont McKenna College, where she swam distance freestyle for the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps team. Outside of SwimSwam, she has bylines at Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports, SB Nation, and The Student Life newspaper.

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