2020 ISL Match 4 – Day 2 Live Recap


The Cali Condors have raced their way to the lead in this match #4 of the International Swimming League (ISL) season 2. The likes of Caeleb Dressel, Hali Flickinger, Lilly King, Melanie Margalis and more have helped contribute to CAC’s overall point haul of 321.5 from day 1.

That leaves a tight battle for runner-up for this final day of competition, with NY Breakers and Iron separated by just 11 points at the moment. Yesterday, NY Breakers particularly put up a strong showing across the board, with Marco Koch nailing a 30-point decimation in the men’s 200m breast, while Kasia Wasick did major damage in the women’s 50m free.

Team Scores

Start Lists

Recap: Retta Race, Analysis: Jared Anderson


  • DC Trident – 1 & 2
  • Cali Condors – 3 & 4
  • Iron – 5 & 6
  • NY Breakers – 7 & 8



Kromowidjojo remains undefeated in the 100 free so far this season. She won her opening match in 52.00 and went a few tenths faster today. She sits #4 across the league in this event so far. Kromowidjojo jackpotted one swimmer, but it didn’t affect team points, as it was her own teammate Beckmann. 50 free champ Wasick was solid for the Breakers, but couldn’t upset Kromowidjojo for the second time this week.


Much was made of last week, when Zach Apple outswam Caeleb Dressel across the two meets. But it’s something totally different to beat Dressel head-to-head, and that’s exactly what Apple just did. His 45.94 was actually two tenths slower than he was last week, but Dressel was about six tenths slower.

Cali was 2nd and 3rd, so the points swing isn’t too brutal, especially with no jackpots in the mix.

Count this as a win for Iron in their battle with New York. Iron’s two each finished one spot ahead of their Breakers counterpart, although 17-year-old Richards held his own in a field full of veterans.


Flickinger won match #1 and Hosszu match #2. In their head-to-head showdown, it was Flickinger who dominated to remain undefeated in this event across her ISL career. Flickinger was 2:04.34 to lower her season-best by about eight-tenths of a second.

The key matchup down the road will be Flickinger vs new ISL record-holder Suzuka Hasegawa, who was 2:03.12 in the other match this weekend for Tokyo.

New York went 2-4 and got both swimmers in under the jackpot margin. Each of the other three teams had one swimmer jackpotted. That’s going to hurt Iron some as they try to run down New York. Match #2 winner Hosszu was just third, getting touched out at the end by Chimrova, yesterday’s 3rd place finisher in the 100m fly.


18-year-old Eddie Wang had a key swim – he was third behind standouts Shields and Le Clos last week, and took advantage of their absence to win in 1:51.32. That’s actually a tick slower than Wang went last week in breaking the world junior record. Wang remains the #3 performer in the ISL so far this year.

It was a spirited battle for second, with Iron’s Klenz beating New York’s Poprawa by a single hundredth – that’s a key two-point swing in a close team battle.

Two swimmers at the bottom got jackpotted: one from DC and one from New York. With that, Iron sits just ten points behind New York in that battle for third, as Cali has pretty much sealed the win and DC would need a massive skins performance to climb up from 4th.


Cali has gone 1-2 in this event in both of its ISL meets so far. Smoliga was a little slower than last week, which has been a theme among a few of the big names so far today. However, she did snag 15 points for the 2nd 100m back in a row.

It has to be a great sign for tonight’s 50 back skin race that Cali’s duo went 1-2 here, even despite a tough charge from new New York Breaker addition Tchorz. Tchorz was third in 57.09 and sits just outside the top five in the league so far this season while breaking the Polish record. Her big swim propels New York further ahead of Iron – they now lead by 16 in the battle for second, though Iron has some heavy hitters coming up in the 100 IMs.


This one was an absolute thriller, with five men within 0.21 seconds at the finish. It could have broken almost any direction, but DC will be happiest with the result as the 200 specialist Pebley closed extremely hard to win in 50.51.

Iron’s Guilherme Basseto has proven to be an aggressive front-half swimmer so far in the ISL. He led early by a half-second, and though Pebley ran him down, Basseto managed to hold on for second ahead of a three-way tie for third.

Cali’s Coleman Stewart was six tenths slower than he was last week – his 50.12 from match #1 would have won the event today by a lot.

The Breakers are hurting badly in backstroke. Skierka and Telegdy go 7-8 for the second-straight week, though this time they avoided getting jackpotted out of points. Iron now lurks just 9 points behind New York for second.


Margalis is going to have a shot at an IM sweep this week. The 100 is probably her weakest distance, as she’s more of an endurance-based swimmer. But Margalis crushed the breaststroke leg here and beat a field composed a lot more of 400 IM types than pure sprinters. (We’ll see the opposite lineup approach in the men’s field next).

At 57.94, Margalis will tie for #2 across the league this year. She’s just two tenths off of the ISL record held by Sarah Sjostrom. Abbie Wood was three tenths faster for the New York Breakers than she was last week, and sits 5th across the league so far this year.

MEN’S 100 IM

It was another battle of winners – match #1 champ Dressel faced match #2 champ Orsi. It was actually New York’s Michael Andrew leading early, but Dressel’s freestyle speed is just so unparalleled. He went by the field with a massive final wall. Dressel’s 51.27 is a tenth faster than last week and improves on his own ISL record in the event.

Andrew held on for second for New York, going 51.81 and checking in at #5 across the league this year. That’s one of Andrew’s better swims of the season so far, and is actually three one-hundredths faster than he was when he won the Short Course World Champs gold in 2016. New York is performing extremely well even without Andrew catching fire, but if he starts to heat up, this team could get dangerous late in the year.

In the team battle, Cali leads New York by 71.5. The real battle is between New York and Iron for second – the Breakers lead by 13, with DC about 57.5 points behind Iron in 4th


1. Cali Condors (CAC) 442.5
2. NY Breakers (NYB) 271.0
3. Iron (IRO) 258.0
4. DC Trident (DCT) 200.5


The Cali women have just been so dominant this season. Schmitt has been crushing match #4 with strong 100 free splits, and she gets her first individual ISL win of the season here in 1:54.41. Schmitt was a second faster last week chasing ISL leader Siobhan Haughey, but those two remain #1 and #2 in the league so far this year.

Flickinger was second in 1:54.70. That’s a good second faster than she was last week when she placed 5th. Even though today’s meet is pretty much wrapped up, Cali is making a major statement of dominance, and holding up their #1 spot in our Power Rankings with #2 Energy Standard on bye.

The second place margin is up to 12 points, with New York continually holding off Iron so far this week.


A credit to the Condors coaches: they appear to have come up with a solution for Haas, who was awful in the 400 last week, but is still showing a lot of 100/200 strength. Haas seems to be more of a 200-and-down guy at this point in his career, and while that leaves a hole for the Condors in the 400, allowing Haas to skip the 400 and focus on the 200 yielded a big win and the league’s third-best time of the season.

Leonardo Santos almost came up with another huge win for Iron. Santos won the 200 IM yesterday in a massive showing, and he went out like a rocket here, leading even Haas, a notorious front-half swimmer, at the 100 mark. Santos couldn’t hold off Haas but did hold second.

On the flip side, DC’s Zach Apple probably went out a little too slow. He was 51.0 at the 100 last week and wound up second, but was just 51.7 and 7th at the 100-mark this time around and could only surge back to third.


This event is a clear strength for Iron, and it felt like it might be the tipping point where they jump to the lead. Kromowidjojo came through absolutely clutch, going 24.80 to win and lead a 1-2 for Iron along with teammate Henique. Kromowidjojo leads the ISL with her 24.74 from last week, and her Iron team is now tied with New York for second place. Henique improves by two tenths from last week and Iron now has the #1 and #3 ranked swimmers in the league in this event.

It wasn’t all bad for New York, as Surkova dropped a tenth and finished third. But Chimrova got jackpotted out of 8th place and all the lead the Breakers built has rapidly vanished.

Cali was a little disappointing here, taking just 4th and 6th. They were 5th and 6th in this race last week and it’s looking like less of a strength than it once did.


Iron is absolutely on fire. 40-year-old world record-holder Santos crushed this field, winning by three-tenths of a second in a massive triple jackpot for Iron. This is Santos’ only event today after swimming three races yesterday, and rest definitely paid off.

Dressel was the match #1 winner, but he’s got a brutal slate of five events today, and it added up as he was just second here and two tenths slower than last week.

New York had a solid run, trying to play defense against Iron’s onslaught. Andrew is starting to heat up and took fourth, but it’s been Joe Litchfield who has really been an impact riser for the Breakers. He was third here and two tenths faster than he was last week to become Great Britain’s 3rd fastest performer ever in this sprint.

Iron has now opened an 8-point lead over New York for second, though the final result will almost certainly come down to the skin races.


With just one event today, King and Hannis were able to return to their dominant 1-2 positions in this 100 breaststroke. King improves to 25-for-25 in wins across her ISL career, a legendary streak that shows no sign of stopping anytime soon. King was a half-second off her season-leading swim and six tenths off of her ISL record from last year. Hannis went almost exactly the same time as last week, but moved up to second without the Energy star Pilato in the mix.

Iron took 3rd and 4th, which is about as good as you can expect when the Condors are this dominant. That’s instantly pushed Iron up to a 13-point lead over New York with six events remaining.


Yet another Iron win – that’s three of the last four events. Sakci has been a star in the sprint breaststrokes so far this year, and he opened a big lead early. Though 200 breast champ Koch closed hard, it wasn’t enough to overcome Sakci’s 0.7 second lead from the first 50.

The men’s breaststrokes have been jackpot city so far. Sakci jackpotted three swimmers here after jackpotting five in the 50. (Koch jackpotted six in his 200 breast). Iron’s second entrant, Yakov Toumarkin, missed the cutoff time and will lose a point. That justifies Iron’s decision to use Marco Orsi in the 50 breast instead of Tourmarkin or another of the team’s breaststrokers.

Iron now leads by 16 over the Breakers. New York would probably need to cut that lead down in the coming relay to have a shot to flip things in the skins.


  1. Cali Condors (CAC) 507.5
  2. Iron (IRO) 335.0
  3. NY Breakers (NYB) 319.0
  4. DC Trident (DCT) 230.5


The DC Trident have swum pretty well despite running fourth the whole way. They have a bit of a streak going themselves here, with two mixed free relay wins in two meets. Zach Apple‘s 46.08 leadoff was the key piece, but all four legs were really good for the Trident. The team actually swapped out two legs from the relay that won last week.

Jacob Pebley was 46.7 and a positive addition on the men’s side. Margo Geer split 52.0 (she was just 52.7 last week) for one of the field’s best women’s splits. And Ting Wen Quah was a new addition, anchoring in 52.7, four tenths faster than last week’s anchor.

Cali was second without using Caeleb Dressel. Justin Ress split 46.1 and Natalie Hinds 52.5.

Iron nipped the Breakers by six tenths as all momentum in that battle has swung harshly in favor of Iron. Ranomi Kromowidjojo was a pool-wrecker, crushing New York with a 51.5 anchor that erased a lead of more than a second heading into the final leg.

Kasia Wasick was 51.8 on her leg for New York, the second-best split among the women.


Abbie Wood was second to league leader Melanie Margalis last week. And with Margalis withdrawing from the event today (likely for rest with Cali holding a commanding lead), Wood exploded for her first career ISL win in 4:28.20. Wood was aggressive and built a massive lead. She tailed off a little but was within .01 of her lifetime-best from last week. Wood remains #4 across the league for the season.

It’s an important win for New York, compounded by the fact that Wood jackpotted the points from Iron’s Ugolkova. Iron’s Hosszu won the event last week but was just 4th here against a tougher field. The Breakers make up ten points in a hurry and now sit 12 behind Iron with three events remaining.

Cali’s choice to rest Margalis probably has to do with how lopsided the points are. But Anderson was 8th and got her points jackpotted here – in fact, she was three seconds away from staying within the jackpot margin. So that’s probably not a lineup option the Condors will look to in a more competitive meet down the road, with Margalis still leading the league with her time from last week.

MEN’S 400 IM

Make it 2-for-2 for Iron’s Verraszto in this event. He held off New York’s Almeida in a high-stakes battle that could have turned the race for second place. Verraszto was 4:03.52 – almost a full second faster than he was last week. That improves his standing as the #2 swimmer in the league in this event behind Tokyo’s Kosuke Hagino.

Almeida didn’t swim this event last week, but really showed up for the Breakers in 4:04.75. He’ll be the #4 performer in the league this year in the 400 IM with that swim.

The points swing for winning was essentially ten points, as Verraszto jackpotted two swimmers for 12 points. Almeida scored 7 for second. The Breakers did manage to get Brendon Smith inside the jackpot margin, but Iron’s lead is 16 points heading into the skin races, with Sakci heavily favored to win the men’s 50 breast.


ROUND 1: Smoliga (CAC), Mack (DCT), Tchorz (NYB) & Nelson (CAC) move on

Smoliga led the way, as expected. The bigger story is that things broke right for New York – they got newcomer Tchorz into the second round just barely, blocking both of Iron’s entrants from the second round.

Tchorz was third and Iron’s duo 5th and 6th, capping them at 6.5 points for the event. New York is at 7 after this round with a shot at more.

Cali got two into the final, justifying their decision to pick backstroke for this event.

ROUND 2: Smoliga (CAC) & Nelson (CAC) move on

Cali will stack the final, with Smoliga and Nelson proving a dominant combo. Tchorz went out fast, and for a moment, it looked like the Breakers might come up with a miracle finish to pass Iron in the skin races. But Nelson is so good underwater and surged off the turn to beat Tchorz for the last spot into the final.

New York will outscore Iron by 6.5 in this event, but that won’t be enough to take over second place. They’ll need to rely on Michael Andrew in the 50 breast – though he has been heating up today.

ROUND 3: Smoliga (CAC) take the skins win

The final didn’t have any implications for team points, with two Condors teammates in together. But it will add some prize money for Olivia Smoliga, as well as boost her MVP points with a 32-point showing in the skins.


ROUND 1: Sakci (IRO), Andrew (NYB), Dressel (CAC) & Koch (NYB) move on

That’s a big break for New York, with two into the final. Iron did win, though, with Sakci jackpotting three swimmers for a 15-point showing. New York scored 12 with their two, so things could still really come down to the latter two rounds.

Dressel’s start is so good, and that’s really what got him into the second round. He surged out to a lead and only Sakci and Andrew could pass him up down the stretch. DC was 5th and 6th, just barely shut out of the second round.

New York was down 9 going into this race, now down 12.

ROUND 2: Sakci (IRO) & Dressel (CAC) move on

The Cinderella story for New York comes up just short, as Sakci and Dressel shut out the two Breakers from the final. Dressel continues to just ride his incredible start in these 50-meter skin races. It almost doesn’t matter what stroke, because Dressel can build such an incredible lead on the start.

No one got jackpotted, though, so New York will score 23 total in this event. Iron is at 24 for the event, though, with Sakci set to score more in the final.

ROUND 3: Sakci (IRO) takes the skins win

Sakci held on remarkably well in this race. A 25.7 in the final is incredible – that’s just two tenths off his league-leading 25.5 from the individual 50 breast. It’s going to be hard to picture anyone beating Sakci in a 50 breast skins race, because that multi-round endurance is on a level with Dressel himself, who has been otherworldly in skins races.



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2 years ago

Now that the Condors procession is over we have an actual competitive meet with LON, LAC and TFK next on Friday.

Murthy R
Reply to  Troyy
2 years ago

I wonder if London or energy can actually keep up with condors later on, or it will be a massacre again

Reply to  Murthy R
2 years ago

It should be close if ENS returns to their Vegas form.

Murphy R
Reply to  Troyy
2 years ago

I wonder if London or energy can actually keep up with condors later on, or it will be a massacre again

2 years ago

And actually Sakçi is pronounced “Satchi” not “Saki”…

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  swimfan_00
2 years ago


Reply to  swimfan_00
2 years ago

The Turkish pronunciation guide on Wikipedia still has the k pronounced as a k so Sakchi and the a is closest to father not sack.

Last edited 2 years ago by Troyy
Reply to  swimfan_00
2 years ago

Maybe we can ask him next time

2 years ago

looks like centurions and trident are on the brink of elimination! 🙁

Reply to  TAMI
2 years ago

trident and breakers have 3 points now after 2 matches, centurions are out

Reply to  swimfan_00
2 years ago

Probably beakers next tho

Reply to  Smith
2 years ago

DC is much more likelly to be out now. They will face London, LA & Tokyo at their next race and will definitely finish 4th. Then they will compete with Energy, Iron and Toronto. Iron and Toronto may not be so tough to beat, but according to what happened by now, DC should work extremely hard to avoid getting 4th again.

NY will be a little luckier facing Aqua Centurions at their next race. Very likely to finish 3rd there.

Swimmer Brent
2 years ago

The method for lane assignments still annoys me to no end.

It should stagger the teams: 1/5, 2/6, 3/7, 4/8. Each team gets a middle lane, each team gets an outside lane.

2 years ago

Sacki was 58,85 lcm 100 breast last year and 56,58 scm

Another contender for 100 breast now for Tokyo

Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  Rafael
2 years ago

Silver you mean right? (Peaty)

Reply to  Coach Mike 1952
2 years ago

For medal

Silver and bronze might actually be 57 high 58 flat


Coach Mike 1952
Reply to  Rafael
2 years ago

Medal yes, gold most likely not

2 years ago

And Sakci’s LCM 100 breast PB is 58.85 from last August. With this improvement he could be a big factor coming into Tokyo.

2 years ago

I wonder what the viewing numbers were 10am on a Tuesday in the US

Last edited 2 years ago by WIN
Reply to  WIN
2 years ago


Almeida B
Reply to  Lokiz
2 years ago

Really. That’s 1 off I think ;$

2 years ago

Observations: breaststrokers have generally been hurt less in skins, and I think nobody has picked fly for skins yet (it was the most anticipated in the poll).

Will 37
Reply to  swimfan210_
2 years ago

Probably it is because it’s SCM and breaststroke pullouts really saves the legs compare to dolphin kicks.

Reply to  Will 37
2 years ago

No team that that could pick has an advantage in FLY. Maybe LA but they have a bigger advantage on Backstroke.

Reply to  swimfan210_
2 years ago

Backstrokers have fared pretty well too…I think the ability to breath in both versus freestyle lends itself well to all 3 50s being a faster average.

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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