2021 ACC Women’s Championships: Day 3 Prelims Live Recap

2021 ACC WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIPS

  • When: Wednesday, February 17th – Saturday, February 20th | Prelims: 11:00 am | Finals: 7:00 pm (EST) (Except Wednesday’s timed finals, which begin at 5:15 EST)
  • Where: Greensboro Aquatic Center, Greensboro, NC
  • Defending Champion: University of Virginia (x1) (results)
  • Format: 25 Yards/Short Course Yards (SCY)
  • Championship Central: Here
  • Championship Manual
  • Psych Sheets (uncut)
  • Live Results
  • Day 3 Prelims Results

Friday Prelims Heat Sheet

Day three of the 2021 ACC Women’s Championships will pick up this morning with the preliminaries of the 100 fly, 400 IM, 200 free, 100 back, and 100 breast.

Expect to see UVA stud Kate Douglass top her signature 100 fly event this morning, where she is the defending 2020 ACC champion. Senior teammate Paige Madden is coming off her 500 free win yesterday, and should also perform well in the 200 distance today.

Three NC State swimmers will aim to defend their 2020 ACC titles today as well. In the 400 IM, Kate Moore touched out UVA’s Ella Nelson by just 0.01s to win the 2020 ACC title.

Both Moore and Nelson should make it to the A-final tonight. Then, Swedish native Sophie Hansson will contest in the 100 breast, where she set the ACC record last year at 57.74. UVA freshman Alex Walsh has chosen to swim the 100 breast today over her previous entries in the 200 free and 100 back. Walsh is seeded second in the event behind junior teammate Alexis Wenger.

Finally, Katharine Berkoff will get a crack defending her 100 back title today. On Wednesday, Berkoff led off NC State’s 200 medley relay with the 4th-fastest 50 back in history at 23.37. Berkoff should set herself up this morning for a fast finals swim.

WOMEN’S TEAM SCORES — AFTER DAY 2

  1. UVA, 510
  2. NC State, 486
  3. Virginia Tech, 376
  4. Louisville, 311.50
  5. Duke, 290
  6. Notre Dame, 276
  7. UNC, 244.50
  8. Miami, 238
  9. Florida State, 214
  10. Georgia Tech, 210
  11. Pittsburgh, 159
  12. Boston College, 115

Women’s 100 Fly Prelims

  • ACC Record: 49.43, Kelsi Worrell (LOU), 2017
  • ACC Meet Record: 50.06, Kelsi Worrell (LOU), 2016
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 50.92
  • 2020 Champion: Kate Douglass (UVA), 50.83

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Kate Douglass (UVA)- 50.07
  2. Kylee Alons (NCS)- 51.11
  3. Lexi Cuomo (UVA)- 51.68
  4. Gabi Albiero (LOU)- 51.98
  5. Caroline Gmelich (UVA)- 52.00
  6. Abby Harter (UVA)- 52.08
  7. Tristen Ulett (LOU)- 52.26
  8. Jessica Nava (UVA)- 52.41

Earning the top seed into tonight’s 100 fly final is UVA sophomore Kate Douglass, clocking in a swift 50.07. Her morning swim was just one one-hundredth off Kelsi Dahlia’s 2016 ACC meet record of 50.06. Douglass’ best time rests at 49.73, the 5th-fastest performer in history and the No. 1 time in the NCAA this season. Finishing second this morning was NC State sprinter Kylee Alons, touching in a new season best and No. 3 NCAA time of 51.11.

In total, five UVA swimmers qualified for the A-final of the 100 fly. Seeded in third is yesterday’s 50 free runner-up Lexi Cuomo (51.68), followed by #5 Caroline Gmelich (52.00), #6 Abby Harter (52.08), and #8 Jessica Nava (52.41).

Louisville picked up two A-finalists as well this morning, #4 Gabi Albiero (51.98) and #7 Tristen Ulett (52.26), both freshmen. Both Albiero and Ulett have 52.0 lifetime bests, which rank in the all-time top-40 rankings in the 17-18 age group.

Settling for the B-final in this event include NC State’s Abby Arens (52.61), Florida State’s Jenny Halden (52.62), and UVA’s Reilly Tiltmann (52.70), all freshmen. Notre Dame sophomore Coleen Gillilan qualified 12th into the B-final with a 52.76.

Women’s 400 IM Prelims

  • ACC Record: 4:03.51, Tanja Kylliainen (LOU), 2015
  • ACC Meet Record: 4:04.21, Tanja Kylliainen (LOU), 2015
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 4:03.62
  • 2020 Champion: Kate Moore (NCS), 4:04.35

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Abby Hay (LOU)- 4:08.67
  2. Reka Gyorgy (VT)- 4:09.89
  3. Emma Muzzy (NCS)- 4:09.93
  4. Kate Moore (NCS)- 4:10.29
  5. Ella Nelson (UVA)- 4:10.91
  6. Ginevra Molino (FSU)- 4:14.25
  7. Luciana Thomas (ND)- 4:14.97
  8. Catherine Purnell (DUKE)- 4:15.34

Heat 3 of 5 had the fastest morning 400 IM swims, with Louisville’s Abby Hay leading the event with a 4:08.67, easily one of the top 10 times in the NCAA this season. Taking second to Hay in both heat 3 and the overall prelims results was Virginia Tech’s Reka Gyorgy, hitting right at her season best time with a 4:09.89.

NC State’s Emma Muzzy finished strong to win the final heat and qualify third into tonight’s final with a 4:09.93. Finishing second to Muzzy and qualifying fifth tonight was UVA’s Ella Nelson (4:10.91). Last year’s ACC event champion, NC State’s Kate Moore, won heat 4 to qualify fourth tonight with a 4:10.29. Both Nelson and Moore have been 4:05 this season.

Florida State freshman Ginevra Molino qualified sixth tonight with her 4:14.25 morning effort, ahead of fellow A-finalists Notre Dame’s Luciana Thomas (4:14.97) and Duke’s Catherine Purnell (4:15.34).

Women’s 200 Free Prelims

  • ACC Record: 1:39.80, Mallory Comerford (LOU), 2018
  • ACC Meet Record: 1:41.60, Mallory Comerford (LOU), 2019
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 1:42.98
  • 2020 Champion: Paige Madden (UVA), 1:43.18

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Paige Madden (UVA)- 1:44.74
  2. Kyla Valls (UVA)- 1:45.45
  3. Julia Poole (NCS)- 1:45.92
  4. Paige Hetrick (LOU)- 1:46.25
  5. Quinn Schaedler (UVA)- 1:46.81
  6. Phoebe Griffiths (FSU)- 1:47.07
  7. Brooke Switzer (GTCH)- 1:47.23
  8. Alena Kraus (LOU)- 1:47.24

Topping another prelims event was 500 free champion UVA senior Paige Madden, clocking in an easy 1:44.74 morning swim. Madden currently holds the top time in the NCAA this season with a 1:42.39. Teammate Kyla Valls, a member of the winning 800 free relay, is seeded second to Madden with her 1:45.45. Also qualifying fifth tonight is UVA freshman Quinn Schaedler, clocking in at 1:46.81.

NC State’s Julia Poole is the lone Wolfpack member in this A-final, qualifying third at 1:45.92. Joining Louisville teammate and #4 seed Paige Hetrick (1:46.25) in tonight’s final is #8 seed Alena Kraus (1:47.24). Valls, Poole, and Kraus all rank in the top 16 times in the NCAA from their mid-season bests.

Florida State’s Phoebe Griffiths (1:47.07) and Georgia Tech’s Brooke Switzer (1:47.23) will also swim in tonight’s A-final.

Just missing the A-final by 0.03s to place ninth this morning was UVA sophomore Maddie Donohoe, touching in at 1:47.27.

Women’s 100 Breast Prelims

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Alexis Wenger (UVA)- 57.67 *ACC Record
  2. Sophie Hansson (NCS)- 58.01
  3. Alex Walsh (UVA)- 58.28
  4. Andrea Podmanikova (NCS)- 58.84
  5. Kaylee Wheeler (LOU)- 59.01
  6. Anna Keating (UVA)- 59.14
  7. Olivia Calegan (NCS)- 59.74
  8. Adeline Farrington (LOU)- 59.92

UVA junior Alexis Wenger tore up the 100 breast this morning, shaving 0.07s off the 2020 ACC record with a 57.67. That time now tops the NCAA this season, just ahead of USC freshman Kaitlyn Dobler (57.71). Taking second in prelims this morning was the former ACC record-holder, NC State junior Sophie Hansson (58.01). Tonight should be a very interesting dual between Wenger and Hansson, who is the defending ACC champion.

Joining their respective teammates in the A-final include UVA freshman Alex Walsh (58.28) and NC State junior Andrea Podmanikova (58.84). Both of those times easily crack the NCAA top 10 times this season.

Joining Wenger and Walsh tonight is another UVA freshman, Anna Keating, who qualified sixth tonight at 59.14. Likewise, Hansson and Podmanikova will be joined by senior teammate Olivia Calegan (59.74).

Louisville’s Kaylee Wheeler (59.01) and Adeline Farrington (59.92) will also contest in tonight’s A-final, making the entire top 8 times all sub-minute.

During Thursday’s time trials, NC State freshman Abby Arens swam a 59.46 lifetime best in this event. If Arens had swum this event in lieu of the 100 fly, she would have qualified 7th.

Women’s 100 Back Prelims

  • ACC Record: 50.01, Courtney Bartholomew (UVA), 2014
  • ACC Meet Record: 50.74, Courtney Bartholomew (UVA), 2016
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 50.93
  • 2020 Champion: Katharine Berkoff (NCS), 51.64

Top 8 Qualifiers:

  1. Katharine Berkoff (NCS)- 50.56 *ACC Meet Record
  2. Grace Countie (UNC)- 51.46
  3. Reilly Tiltmann (UVA)- 52.12
  4. Caroline Gmelich (UVA)- 52.13
  5. Emma Atkinson (VT)- 52.15
  6. Danika Huizinga (NCS)- 52.90
  7. Caroline Bentz (VT)- 52.93
  8. Tania Quaglieri (FSU)- 52.97

Taking down another ACC meet record this morning was NC State sophomore Katharine Berkoff, breaking the 2016 meet record of 50.74 with a swift 50.56. Berkoff already ranks No. 1 in the NCAA this season with her lifetime best of 50.40, which made her the 14th-fastest performer in history. Senior teammate Danika Huizinga will join Berkoff in the A-final, who qualified 6th with a 52.90.

Swimming second into tonight’s A-final is UNC junior Grace Countie, who moves up to No. 7 in the NCAA this season with her morning effort of 51.46.

The two UVA Cavaliers that will appear in tonight’s 100 back A-final will be freshman Reilly Tiltmann (52.12) and senior Caroline Gmelich (52.13). Earlier in the 100 fly prelims, Gmelich qualifed fifth into the A-final while Tiltmann qualified for the B-final in 11th place. Tiltmann’s time this morning marked a new lifetime best. Still 17 years old, Tiltmann is now the 19th-fastest 17-year-old to swim the 100-yard back.

Virginia Tech scored two swimmers into the A-final, led by Emma Atkinson (52.15) and Caroline Bentz (52.93).

Florida State scored another A-finalist this session, thanks to #8 seed Tania Quaglieri (52.97), making the entire top-8 qualifiers all sub-53.

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Joel Lin
7 months ago

UVa dropped the hammer in the 1 fly prelim heats. This team is scary deep.

Breezeway
Reply to  Joel Lin
7 months ago

As a Pack guy, I hate it but I must agree with you. Geezus! How many girls they got on scholarship.

PVSFree
Reply to  Breezeway
7 months ago

I mean they’ve got a crazy combo of factors for attracting recruits at this point. World class education, fantastic coaching, what seems like a great team culture, and a campus that’s a UNESCO world heritage site. I’m not even a UVA fan but I get why they’ve gotten so many blue chip recruits recently

Foreign Embassy
Reply to  PVSFree
7 months ago

It’s the Cal Berkeley of the East 😎

Swimfan
Reply to  Joel Lin
7 months ago

That’s not a surprise. They won last year because of fly.

SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
Reply to  Joel Lin
7 months ago

Yep very deep in the fly and the breast as well.

Swimfan
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
7 months ago

Yep just loaded all around. It’s very reminiscent of some of the 2000s men’s teams. They had some years where every swim scored. The women are like that now except they are even better on the national level.

PVSFree
Reply to  Joel Lin
7 months ago

Imagine going 52.4 in 100 fly, making the ACC A final, and still only being the 5th fastest flyer on your team

Breezeway
7 months ago

I know Stanford is not fully loaded right now, but is there anyone else out there deep enough to handle UVA this year or the next couple years?

Swimfan
Reply to  Breezeway
7 months ago

Stanford could be next year depending on if anyone goes pro

Ervin
Reply to  Swimfan
7 months ago

Disagree…even if both Ruck and Regan Smith come back which is a big IF….I still think UVA will win next year too. Emma Weyant and Gretchen Walsh both coming in for them.

Stanford frankly looked really bad against Cal recently (no depth or big stars). Their 2019 relays barely made the A final…and only did so cause Ruck anchored them. Had NCAAs not been cancelled in 2020 they would have gotten like 4th or 5th place…which is generously their peak this year too. Will most likely always be an elite program but their glory days are behind them….it happens.

Huh
Reply to  Breezeway
7 months ago

Yes, once Stanford gets all their deferrals back they will be very loaded as well.

Wahooswimfan
Reply to  Huh
7 months ago

and Stanford is getting Tori Huske too – she will be a 3 event finalist.

Ervin
Reply to  Wahooswimfan
7 months ago

Totally forgot about her! Might have to update my above comment lol

Hoofan
Reply to  Ervin
7 months ago

Throw in a little Emma Weyant for the Hoos and I give the edge back to UVA

Whoa
Reply to  Breezeway
7 months ago

Cal

swimgeek
Reply to  Breezeway
7 months ago

Stanford next year if they get Regan Smith, Nordmann, etc. However, UVA adds superstars like G. Walsh and Emma Weyants next year.

lightning
Reply to  swimgeek
7 months ago

Stanford also has Torri Huske next year.

SwimFani
Reply to  Breezeway
7 months ago

What about the Beaver-Tailed Hatted LADYVOLS??? Ooops lookin like they might be 6th at SECs this year after suiting up all year and believing the hype from a last year. Congrats to UVA, they have build their program on a solid foundation of hard work and I am a believer in them and NCSTATE.

Breezeway
Reply to  SwimFani
7 months ago

🤣 you’re crazy

Swimmerj
7 months ago

This 100 breast final is going to be crazy

Austinpoolboy
7 months ago

NC state was hanging close after day two, but Virginia just shut the door after prelims on day 3. The lead will be insurmountable after finals tonight

swimgeek
Reply to  Austinpoolboy
7 months ago

Yup. The meet is over.

swimgeek
7 months ago

After putting 5 in the A Final (plus 11th) in fly, UVA just went 1-2-5-9-12-15 in the 2Free. 1-3-6 in breast; They just blew this meet wide open. Impressive session

Breezeway
Reply to  swimgeek
7 months ago

That’s crazy! Well, I believe the Pack will get the back, can get the breast (dogfight) and 4IM (dogfight) and fight like hell for the relay. But UVA has the meet wrapped up.

Kwrb77
7 months ago

I wonder how UVA will put together their medley relay tonight. Walsh on back or free?

SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
Reply to  Kwrb77
7 months ago

Gmelich, Wenger, Douglass, Walsh would be fastest I think.

Or maybe Walsh, Wenger, Cuomo, Douglass.

swim6847
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
7 months ago

At mid season their lineup was Walsh, Wenger, Douglass & Madden so Id say that’s a possibility as well

swimgeek
Reply to  SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
7 months ago

Walsh has been 50.8 and is crushing PRs this meet. I think you project her at 50-mid and you put her in back b/c you don’t want to be 2 seconds behind Berkoff. Then again — if you can get 51-mid from Gmelich or Tiltmann — then you keep Douglass in fly and get a monster anchor leg from Walsh.

Coach
Reply to  swimgeek
7 months ago

Walsh has been 50.8, and she hasn’t done a rested SCY meet in over 2 years. Would be great to see her and Berkhoff battle in a 100 back like their old National Junior Team days.

lightning
Reply to  Kwrb77
7 months ago

I think they’ll have to put Walsh on back because they can’t have a swimmer (Gmelich or Tiltmann) who is 1.5-2 seconds slower than Berkoff. That’s a big deficit to make up in the relay. Walsh is the only UVA swimmer to go under 52 this year in back. Cuomo or Douglass on fly; Cuomo, Douglass, or Madden on free…hard to say who they’ll choose. One thing is for sure- they have great options for relay prelims if they don’t do timed finals at NCAAs next month. Infinite options!

swimgeek
Reply to  Kwrb77
7 months ago

Great question – and great answers below. The only spot guaranteed is Wenger breast. Everything else up in the air — and I suspect they won’t decided until AFTER the indv swims are done. Just need to look at the delta b/n Douglass/Cuomo in fly; what Gmelich and Tiltmann go in back — and then the projected times for Walsh in back (or free) and Douglass in free. Pretty amazing to have that many choices. But a very plausible relay would be:
Walsh 50.5 (her PR is 50.88 and she’s crushing PRs this meet)
Wenger 57.2 (just went 57.6 flat start in prelims – so this is conservative)
Cuomo 51.0 (51.5 flat start)
Douglass 46.0
= 3:24.57 = NCAA/Am Record

NC Fan
Reply to  swimgeek
7 months ago

4MR can easily be the race of the meet. UVA should win but seems like State could go second fastest ever. 2MR was sick but this will be even better. Friday night on ACCNx

Greg
Reply to  swimgeek
7 months ago

after last night, I’d love to see Alex Walsh dive in on free with a sizable deficit and rip out something special, like a 46.0. Seems very plausible, considering she went 21.0 and is a 100-200 swimmer.

With Douglass on fly, you still come up with a 324.5.

Lots of factors to weigh in here, including that this will be the 5th swim of the day for either Gmelich or Tiltmann. Walsh has to go about 50.5 to make it worthwhile, and that’s a bit risky too. Definitely seems like a decision they’ll make after the 100 back.

swimgeek
Reply to  Greg
7 months ago

Great point of both Gmelich and Tiltmann doing double. To me, that makes it that much more likely that Walsh does backstroke. Tiltmann is a superstar, but is also an 18-yr-old who is still in her HS senior year — that might influence the selection a bit too. Having done that fly/back double myself, doing a 5th race maxing underwaters — that’s rough. I think it will be Walsh back. And then either Cuomo-Douglass or Douglass-Cuomo/Madden. It’s not absurd to think Walsh could go :49. Her :50.8 is from *Dec. 2018*

Captain Ahab
7 months ago

Wow! I never thought UVA women’s swimming could get any better when Mark Bernardino was the head coach; However, it looks like UVA women’s swimming might be dominant for a very, very, very, long time.

Swimfan
Reply to  Captain Ahab
7 months ago

To be completely fair their highest finish at ncaas was under Augie. Albeit with a lot of women mark recruited.

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 …

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