2023 ACC Championships: Day 5 Prelims Live Recap


The final day of the 2023 ACC Championships will kick off with preliminary heats in the men’s and women’s 200 back, 100 free and 200 breast, with five of the six reigning champions in the field to defend their titles.

Virginia’s Reilly Tiltmann (200 back), Kate Douglass (100 free) and Alex Walsh (200 breast) will aim to defend their conference titles from last season on the women’s side, while Virginia Tech’s Youssef Ramadan (100 free) and Carles Coll Marti (200 breast) will vie to do the same on the men’s side.

In the men’s 200 back, a new champion will be crowned this year due to the graduation of last year’s winner, VA Tech’s Samuel Törnqvist. Virginia’s Jack Aikins is the top returner from last season, having placed second to Tornqivst in 1:39.53, while Georgia Tech’s Berke Saka is the conference’s fastest swimmer this season at 1:40.02.



  1. UVA — 1128
  2. NC State — 942
  3. Louisville — 822.5
  4. UNC — 687
  5. Duke — 574
  6. Virginia Tech — 468
  7. Florida State — 461
  8. Notre Dame — 408
  9. Georgia Tech — 308
  10. Miami — 299
  11. Pitt — 249.5
  12. Boston College — 137


  1. NC State — 1163
  2. Louisville — 727.5
  3. Virginia Tech — 688
  4. Virginia — 659
  5. Notre Dame — 585.5
  6. Florida State — 474
  7. UNC — 459
  8. Pitt — 438.5
  9. Georgia Tech — 33.5
  10. Duke — 228
  11. Miami — 150
  12. Boston College — 123

Women’s 200 Backstroke

  • NCAA Record: 1:47.24, Beata Nelson (WISC) – 2019 NCAA Championships
  • ACC Record: 1:49.09, Alexia Zevnik (NCST) – 2017 NCAA Championships
  • ACC Championship Record: 1:49.61, Alexia Zevnik (NCST) – 2017
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 1:50.50
  • 2022 NCAA Invite Time: 1:53.97
  1. Kennedy Noble (NCS), 1:51.39
  2. Emma Muzzy (NCS), 1:52.19
  3. Paige Hetrick (LOU), 1:52.46
  4. Reilly Tiltmann (UVA), 1:52.86
  5. Rye Ulett (LOU), 1:53.83
  6. Emma Atkinson (VT), 1:53.93
  7. Ella Bathurst (VT), 1:54.03
  8. Sophie Lindner (UNC), 1:55.41

NC State freshman Kennedy Noble dropped a personal best in the prelims of the women’s 200 back to take the top seed into tonight’s final by eight-tenths, putting up a time of 1:51.39 from the first circle-seeded heat.

Noble’s previous best came nearly two years ago to the day (Feb. 20, 2021) at the YWSF Last Chance Invite in 1:51.91.

Her Wolfpack teammate Emma Muzzy, the 2021 champion and last year’s runner-up, topped the last heat to qualify second overall in 1:52.19, with defending champion Reilly Tiltmann second in the heat and fourth overall in 1:52.86.

Winning the penultimate heat was Louisville junior Paige Hetrick, who was sixth last year, as she neared her lifetime best of 1:52.05 from the 2022 NCAAs in 1:52.45.

Virginia Tech’s Emma Atkinson, third last season in 1:50.64, safely moved through to the final in sixth in 1:53.93.

On the flip side for the Hokies, freshman Carmen Weiler Sastre missed the ‘A’ final in 12th, clocking 1:56.44 after going a best of 1:52.97 during the midseason Ohio State Invitational.

Men’s 200 Backstroke

  • NCAA Record: 1:35.73, Ryan Murphy (CAL) – 2016 NCAA Championships
  • ACC Record: 1:37.31, Coleman Stewart (NCST) – 2020 ACC Championships
  • ACC Championship Record: 1:37.31, Coleman Stewart (NCST) – 2020
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 1:39.13
  • 2022 NCAA Invite Time: 1:40.92
  1. Nico García (VT), 1:40.42
  2. Jack Aikins (UVA), 1:40.50
  3. Tommy Janton (ND), 1:41.19
  4. Hunter Tapp (NCS), 1:41.36
  5. Forest Webb (VT), 1:41.97
  6. Mikey Moore (NCST), 1:42.09
  7. Berke Saka (GT), 1:42.10
  8. Kacper Stokowski (NCS), 1:42.13

Virginia Tech sophomore Nico García outdueled UVA’s Jack Aikins for the victory in the first circle-seeded heat of the men’s 200 back, ultimately earning him the top seed for tonight’s final.

García set a new personal best time of 1:40.42, improving on his previous mark of 1:41.00 set last season when he finished ninth.

Aikins, the 2022 runner-up, dropped a two-second season-best to advance second overall in 1:40.50, while Notre Dame freshman Tommy Janton (1:41.19) and NC State senior Hunter Tapp (1:41.36) were slightly slower than their midseason times to qualify in third and fourth.

VT senior Forest Webb and NC State junior Mikey Moore, who both swam in the consolation final last year, posted respective season-best times of 1:41.97 and 1:42.09 to qualify fifth and sixth overall.

Georgia Tech’s Berke Saka, who came into the meet as the conference’s fastest swimmer this season at 1:40.02, was back in 1:42.10 but still gets through to the final in seventh, as does last night’s 100 back champion Kacper Stokowski (1:42.13) in eighth.

It was a razor-thin battle to make the final, as Pitt’s Marcin Goraj and UVA’s Max Edwards tied for ninth in 1:42.17, just .04 back of Stokowski for the eighth and final spot in the big heat.

Women’s 100 Freestyle

  • NCAA Record: 45.56, Simone Manuel (STAN) – 2017 NCAA Championships
  • ACC Record: 46.05, Gretchen Walsh (UVA) – 2022 NCAA Championships
  • ACC Championship Record: 46.57, Mallory Comerford (UL) – 2019
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 47.18
  • 2022 NCAA Invite Time: 48.44
  1. Kate Douglass (UVA), 46.50
  2. Gretchen Walsh (UVA), 47.20
  3. Gabi Albiero (LOU), 47.42
  4. Katharine Berkoff (NCS), 47.50
  5. Christiana Regenauer (LOU), 47.70
  6. Lexi Cuomo (UVA), 47.71
  7. Abbey Webb (NCS) / Aimee Canny (UVA), 48.05

There will only be three squads represented in tonight’s ‘A’ final of the women’s 100 free, and half of the heat will be Cavaliers.

UVA put four up this morning, led by senior standout Kate Douglass, who continued her hot streak by breaking Mallory Comerford‘s ACC Championship Record in a time of 46.50.

Douglass’ swim lowers Comerford’s previous meet record of 46.57, set in 2019, and falls just two-tenths shy of her personal best set at the 2021 NCAAs (46.30). Douglass also overtakes the top time in the country this season, moving past Stanford’s Torri Huske (46.85).

Douglass’ UVA teammate Gretchen Walsh put up the second-fastest time of the session in 47.20, with the sophomore owning a season-best of 46.89 which now ranks her third in the country (was second prior to Douglass’ swim).

Cavalier senior Lexi Cuomo (47.71) and freshman Aimee Canny (48.05) both established sizeable best times to join Douglass and Walsh in tonight’s final, placing sixth and tied for seventh, respectively.

Louisville’s Gabi Albiero advanced third in 47.42, just ahead of NC State’s Katharine Berkoff (47.50), who both dip under their season-best times.

Cardinal senior Christiana Regenauer (47.70) and Wolfpack junior Abbey Webb (48.05) round out the ‘A’ final.

Men’s 100 Freestyle

  • NCAA Record: 39.90, Caeleb Dressel (FLOR) – 2018 NCAA Championships
  • ACC Record: 41.05, Ryan Held (NCST) – 2018 NCAA Championships
  • ACC Championship Record: 41.41, Ryan Held (NCST) – 2018
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 41.64
  • 2022 NCAA Invite Time: 42.34
  1. Youssef Ramadan (VT), 41.69
  2. Chris Guiliano (ND), 41.94
  3. Michael Eastman (LOU), 42.17
  4. Matt Brownstead (UVA), 42.21
  5. Luke Miller (NCS), 42.40
  6. David Curtiss (NCS), 42.45
  7. Tim Connery (UVA), 42.50
  8. Noah Henderson (NCS), 42.53

Virginia Tech’s Youssef Ramadan and Notre Dame’s Chris Guiliano blasted their way to new best times and school records in the heats of the men’s 100 free, both breaking the 42-second barrier.

Guiliano set the tone by clocking 41.94 in the penultimate heat, going well under his previous PB of 42.32, and then Ramadan responded by dropping a 41.69 in the last heat to crack his previous PB of 41.76, set en route to winning the title last year.

Louisville’s Michael Eastman has now hit a new best time in the 50, 100 and 200 free at this meet, as he clocks 42.17 to qualify third into the final, while UVA’s Matt Brownstead, fourth last year, clocked a season-best of 42.21 for fourth.

It was tightly bunched in the race for spots in the ‘A’ final, as just 16 one-hundredths separated finishers fifth through 11th, with five of those seven athletes coming from NC State.

Luke MillerDavid Curtiss and Noah Henderson ended up getting through for the Pack, as did UVA’s Tim Connery, who joined the Cavaliers from Texas this season and set another best time of 42.50 after going a PB of 42.54 two weeks ago.

Women’s 200 Breaststroke

  • NCAA Record: 2:01.87, Kate Douglass (UVA) – 2022 Tennessee Invitational
  • Note that Douglass’ time of 2:01.43 is a U.S. Open Record but not the official NCAA Record since it was done in a time trial.
  • ACC Record: 2:01.87, Kate Douglass (UVA) – 2022 Tennessee Invitational
  • ACC Championship Record: 2:03.02, Alex Walsh (UVA) – 2022
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 2:06.18
  • 2022 NCAA Invite Time: 2:09.15
  1. Alex Walsh (UVA), 2:06.31
  2. Ella Nelson (UVA), 2:06.39
  3. Sarah Foley (DUKE), 2:08.27
  4. Andrea Podmaníková (NCS), 2:08.34
  5. Kaelyn Gridley (DUKE), 2:08.37
  6. Anna Keating (UVA), 2:08.79
  7. Emma Weber (UVA), 2:09.62
  8. Heather MacCausland (NCS), 2:09.70

The Virginia duo of Alex Walsh and Ella Nelson opened up a big lead early and then put it on cruise control in the last heat of the women’s 200 breaststroke, swimming side by side the whole way to easily qualify 1-2 into tonight’s final.

Walsh, who ranks second in the NCAA this season at 2:03.93, out-touched her senior teammate by eight one-hundredths, 2:06.31 to 2:06.39, to claim Lane 4, while Nelson swam her way to a season-best of 2:06.39, moving her into fourth nationwide in 2022-23.

Duke’s Sarah Foley, fourth last season behind Walsh, Nelson and the now-graduated Sophie Hansson, qualified third overall in 2:08.27, one of four swimmers within a half-second of one another in the 2:08-mid territory.

Foley clocked 2:06.61 at the NC State Invitational in November, and her lifetime best sits at 2:05.78 from last season’s NCAAs.

NC State’s Andrea Podmaníková was fifth last year and qualified fourth into the final in 2:08.34, having been as fast as 2:06.77 this season which should make for a great battle between her and Foley for a spot on the podium.

All six ‘A’ finalists returning from last season made it through to the big heat once again, and two freshmen, Kaelyn Gridley and Emma Weber, have taken over for graduates Hansson and Alexis Wenger.

With Weber joining Walsh, Nelson and Anna Keating, the Cavaliers went four up for the second straight event as they continue their pursuit of a record-setting point total.

Men’s 200 Breaststroke

  • NCAA Record: 1:47.91, Will Licon (TEX) – 2017 NCAA Championships
  • ACC Record: 1:49.69, Carles Coll Marti (VT) – 2022 NCAA Championships
  • ACC Championship Record: 1:51.26, Evgenii Somov (UL) – 2021
  • NCAA ‘A’ Cut: 1:51.54
  • 2022 NCAA Invite Time: 1:53.23
  1. Carles Coll Marti (VT), 1:52.40
  2. Noah Nichols (UVA), 1:52.95
  3. Denis Petrashov (LOU), 1:53.49
  4. Keith Myburgh (VT) / AJ Pouch (VT), 1:53.65
  5. Max Iida (UVA), 1:54.03
  6. Cooper Van Der Laan (PITT), 1:54.43
  7. Jerry Chen (PITT), 1:55.42

Defending champion Carles Coll Marti leads a trio of Hokies into the ‘A’ final of the men’s 200 breast, claiming the top seed in a season-best time of 1:52.40.

Coll Marti, a junior, will be joined by Virginia Tech teammates AJ Pouch and Keith Myburgh tonight, with those two having tied for fourth overall in 1:53.65, a new season-best for both.

Fresh off his record-setting win in the 100 breast last night, Virginia’s Noah Nichols smoothly advanced through to the final in second, clocking 1:52.95 to near his lifetime best of 1:52.62 set earlier this season.

Denis Petrashov, the runner-up in both last year’s 200 breast and last night’s 100 breast, put up a time of 1:53.49 to get Louisville a swimmer in the ‘A’ final in third, while Max Iida joins Nichols to give UVA two after he went 1:54.03 for sixth.

The Pitt men, who entered the day 20.5 points back of UNC for seventh, get two swimmers up into the ‘A’ final with Cooper Van Der Laan and Jerry Chen taking seventh and eighth. Chen’s time of 1:55.42 marks a new lifetime best, having edged out NC State’s Arsenio Bustos (1:55.47) for the last spot in the championship final.

The Panthers also notably had Flynn Crisci drop three seconds from his PB in 1:55.65 to qualify 11th overall into the ‘B’ final out of the first heat.

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3 months ago

Is there not a page for the ACC Day 5 Finals??

3 months ago

David Curtiss in the 100 free final??? I had to do a double take lol

3 months ago

Let’s go Tar Heels!!!!!

3 months ago

When’s the next time Marchand swims?

Samuel Huntington
3 months ago

Coll Marti v. Nichols and Garcia v. Aikins – some great UVA-VT battles tonight!

3 months ago

This meet has been fast.
Many drinks have been finished
In the drinking game!

The doc
Reply to  Pineapple
3 months ago

Bro just wrote a haiku in the swimswam comment section

Reply to  The doc
3 months ago

It is really nice
To be appreciated.
Ok, now I’m done.

3 months ago

Ella Bathurst is on UVA:) BATHURST UP

3 months ago

Wow NC State men did not put anyone in the A final of the 200 breast. Is that the first event this week it’s happened?

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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