2024 Pro Swim Series – Knoxville: Day 2 Prelims Live Recap

2024 PRO SWIM SERIES – KNOXVILLE

Watch the live stream on the USA Swimming Network or on YouTube (courtesy of USA Swimming):

The first preliminary session of the 2024 Knoxville Pro Swim Series will feature four events: the 100 freestyle, 100 breaststroke, 200 butterfly, and 400 freestyle.

The women’s 100 free will feature a deep field, highlighted by 2023 National Champion Kate Douglass. Torri Huske, Claire Curzan, Abbey Weitzeil, and Gretchen Walsh will be among the several other contenders. 2016 Olympic Champion Simone Manuel will also swim the event this morning, and is coming off some promising performances at the U.S. Open last month. Manuel placed 4th in the U.S. Open final in this event, where she touched in a time of 53.65.

The women’s 100 breast field will showcase the past two Olympic champions in the event: Lilly King and Lydia Jacoby. King won the event at the 2016 Rio Games while Jacoby was victorious in Tokyo, so a fun battle awaits (assuming both safely advance).

The men’s 100 breaststroke is one of the most stacked events of the meet, led by Nic Fink (58.36). The American record holder, Michael Andrew, is seeded second (58.51) with Noah Nichols (59.40), Jake Foster (59.64), Cody Miller (59.85), Mitch Mason (59.87), and Charlie Swanson (59.89) all having sub-1:00 entry times.

The 2022 & 2023 World Champion in the 200 butterfly, Summer McIntosh, will swim the event this morning. She owns a best time of 2:04.06, which she posted en route to the world title this past year in Fukuoka. She notably opted to enter the 200 fly over the 400 free, with both events being two of her best. Katie Ledecky, who was victorious last night in the 1500 free, enters the 400 as the top seed.

WOMEN’S 100 FREESTYLE – PRELIMS

  • World Record: 51.71 – Sarah Sjostrom (2017)
  • American Record: 52.04 – Simone Manuel (2019)
  • Pro Swim Series Record: 53.12 – Sarah Sjostrom (2016)
  • US Open Record: 52.54 – Simone Manuel (2018)

Top 8:

  1. Gretchen Walsh (UVA) – 54.06
  2. Kate Douglass (NYAC) – 54.14
  3. Simone Manuel (SUN) – 54.26
  4. Maxine Parker (UVA) – 54.87
  5. Torri Huske (AAC) – 54.93
  6. Alex Walsh (UVA) – 55.01
  7. Abbey Weitzeil (CAL) & Beata Nelson (WISC) – 55.07

The 2022 World Champion in the 200 IM, Alex Walsh, featured in heat two of this event. She took the race out strong, flipping in 26.47 through the first 50 before finishing the race in a final time of 55.01. Her swim represents a new best time, eclipsing her previous marker of 55.61 from 2018.

Abbey Weitzeil and Beata Nelson stopped the clock in equal 55.07 times to tie for the win in heat 10. They will get a swim in the ‘A’-Final tonight, sneaking through with the final two qualification spots.

Maxine Parker was victorious in the penultimate heat, hitting a time of 54.87. Torri Huske led for the first 98-meters of the race, ultimately getting to the wall 2nd in 54.93.

Gretchen Walsh led from start to finish in the final heat, touching in 54.06 for the fastest time of the session. Her teammate, Kate Douglass, touched in 54.14 for 2nd place in the heat. Simone Manuel rounded out the top three in the final heat, hitting a swift 54.26. Those three times from the final heat represent the three fastest of the morning.

Of note, Claire Curzan placed 10th this morning in a time of 55.23. Maggie MacNeil was 11th, stopping the clock in 55.41 to take 3rd in heat eleven. Taylor Ruck (55.55) and Katie Ledecky (55.57) also featured this morning, placing 15th and 16th.

MEN’S 100 FREESTYLE – PRELIMS

  • World Record: 46.86 – David Popovici (2022)
  • American Record: 46.96 – Caeleb Dressel (2019)
  • Pro Swim Series Record: 48.00 – Nathan Adrian (2016)
  • US Open Record: 47.39 – Caeleb Dressel / Ryan Held

Top 8:

  1. Jack Alexy (CAL) – 48.28
  2. Brooks Curry (CAL) – 48.95
  3. Santo Condorelli (DM) – 49.08
  4. Matt King (TFA) – 49.17
  5. Alberto Mestre (UN-02) & Carson Foster (RAYS) – 49.35
  6. Shaine Casas (TXLA) – 49.39
  7. Destin Lasco (UN-1) – 49.45

IM star Carson Foster made his presence known in heat nine, stopping the clock in 49.35 to grab the win from lane 8. His swim marks a new best time, taking down his previous mark of 49.43 from 2019.

Heat 11 featured Jordan Crooks and Matt King, two sprinters who had big LCM time drops in 2023. King led the way, touching in 49.17 with Alberto Mestre (49.35) and Jordan Crooks (49.56) closely behind. Notably, junior star Maximus Williamson (49.83) was 4th in the heat.

Brooks Curry posted a time of 48.95 to win heat 12, which would hold up to rank him 2nd going into tonight’s final. Santo Condorelli followed closely behind him, posting a respectable 49.08 time to advance 3rd to the final.

Cal’s Jack Alexy took the final heat out strong, turning in 23.14 through the first half of the race. He took the win by a body length, stopping the clock in 48.28. Shaine Casas (49.39) and Destin Lasco (49.45) placed 2nd and 3rd in the heat. Both Casas and Lasco will advance to tonight’s final in 7th and 8th, respectively.

Bjorn Seeliger (49.53), Ryan Held (49.62), Hunter Armstrong (49.62), and Kieran Smith (49.73) all earned a spot in tonight’s ‘B’-Final.

WOMEN’S 100 BREASTSTROKE – PRELIMS

  • World Record: 1:04.13 – Lilly King (2017)
  • American Record: 1:04.13 – Lilly King (2017)
  • Pro Swim Series Record: 1:05.32 – Lilly King (2021)
  • US Open Record: 1:04.45 – Jessica Hardy (2009)

Top 8:

  1. Mona McSharry (TENN) – 1:06.65
  2. Kate Douglass (NYAC) – 1:07.31
  3. Lilly King (ISC) – 1:07.60
  4. Lydia Jacoby (TEX) – 1:08.25
  5. Ella Nelson (UVA) – 1:08.49
  6. Alex Walsh (UVA) – 1:08.56
  7. Anna Elendt (TEX) – 1:08.67
  8. Sophie Angus (CAN) – 1:08.79

Tennessee’s Mona McSharry leads the way into tonight’s 100 breast final, as she secured the top qualifying time of the morning (1:06.65). McSharry was the only swimmer to break the 1:07-barrier through the heats, with Kate Douglass (1:07.31) and Lilly King (1:07.60) the only other two under 1:08.

Tokyo Olympic Champion Lydia Jacoby slides through to the final in 4th, as she posted a time of 1:08.25 to take the win in heat 8. Her Texas teammate, Anna Elendt, posted a time of 1:08.67 to qualify 7th.

UVA teammates Ella Nelson (1:08.49) and Alex Walsh (1:08.56) also qualified to compete in tonight’s ‘A’-final, with the swim from Walsh marking her second ‘A’-final worthy swim of the morning.

Canada’s Sophie Angus will round out the ‘A’-final, as she booked her ticket with a swift 1:08.79 performance this morning.

MEN’S 100 BREASTSTROKE – PRELIMS

  • World Record: 56.88 – Adam Peaty (2019)
  • American Record: 58.14 – Michael Andrew (2021)
  • Pro Swim Series Record: 58.58 – Adam Peaty (2017)
  • US Open Record: 58.14 – Michael Andrew (2021)

Top 8:

  1. Michael Andrew (MASA) – 1:00.14
  2. Noah Nichols (UVA) – 1:01.32
  3. Nic Fink (MAAC) – 1:01.41
  4. Joshua Chen (TFA) – 1:01.50
  5. Mitch Mason (LSU) – 1:01.52
  6. Jake Foster (TEX) – 1:01.62
  7. Alon Baer (UN-03) – 1:01.70
  8. Lyubomir Epitropov (TNAQ) – 1:01.87

Noah Nichols (1:01.32) and Mitch Mason (1:01.52) led the way in heat 7, posting the 2nd and 5th fastest times of the session. Nichols won the silver medal in this event at the Pan American Games back in October.

Michael Andrew took the race out fast in heat 8, turning through the 50 in 27.85. Andrew held on well through the closing stages, grabbing the heat win in a time of 1:00.14. Joshua Chen placed 2nd to Andrew in the heat, with his 1:01.50 time advancing him in 4th position. Chen won the World Junior title in this event back in September, clocking 1:00.70 en route to that win.

The final heat saw Nic Fink (1:01.41) and Jake Foster (1:01.62) break away from the field, both posting times that will safely advance to tonight’s ‘A’-final. Foster was the gold medalist in this event at the recent Pan American Games.

It took a time of 1:01.87 to advance to the championship final tonight, meaning every swimmer who cracked the 1:02-barrier earned the opportunity.

WOMEN’S 200 BUTTERFLY – PRELIMS

  • World Record: 2:01.81 – Zige Liu (2009)
  • American Record: 2:03.87 – Regan Smith (2023)
  • Pro Swim Series Record: 2:05.05 – Summer McIntosh (2023)
  • US Open Record: 2:03.87 – Regan Smith (2023)

Top 8:

  1. Summer McIntosh (SYS) – 2:07.89
  2. Dakota Luther (TXLA) – 2:11.48
  3. Tess Howley (UVA) – 2:11.50
  4. Kelly Pash (TEX) – 2:11.58
  5. Emma Sticklen (TEX) – 2:12.24
  6. Addison Sauickie (SYS) – 2:14.39
  7. Leah Gingrich (KA) – 2:14.56
  8. Addison Reese (LAKR) – 2:15.09

Summer McIntosh of the Sarasota Sharks leads all qualifiers in the 200 butterfly, as she posted the fastest time of the morning by a large margin (2:07.89). McIntosh owns a best time of 2:04.06 in the event, and owns the Pro Swim Series record with a time of 2:05.05.

McIntosh’s teammate, Addison Sauickie, will join her in tonight’s ‘A’-final. Sauickie is the World Junior Champion in the 200 freestyle, and posted a time of 2:14.39 in this 200 fly to advance 6th.

Three Texas teammates advanced to tonight’s final, with Dakota Luther (2:11.48) leading the way for teammates Kelly Pash (2:11.58) and Emma Sticklen (2:12.24).

Virginia swimmer Tess Howley qualified 3rd for tonight’s ‘A’-final, stopping the clock in 2:11.50 to grab the win in heat three. Howley owns a best time of 2:06.85 in the event, which she posted en route to winning the Junior National title this past summer.

Leah Gingrich (2:14.56) and Addison Reese (2:15.09) also qualified for tonight’s championship final in 7th and 8th.

MEN’S 200 BUTTERFLY – PRELIMS

  • World Record: 1:50.34 – Kristof Milak (2022)
  • American Record: 1:51.51 – Michael Phelps (2009)
  • Pro Swim Series Record: 1:53.84 – Luca Urlando (2019)
  • US Open Record: 1:52.20 – Michael Phelps (2008)

Top 8:

  1. Martin Espernberger (TENN) – 1:57.70
  2. Trenton Julian (MVN) – 1:58.57
  3. Luca Urlando (DART) – 1:58.81
  4. Gabe Jett (UN-1) – 2:00.05
  5. Ryan Merani (UN-1) – 2:00.32
  6. Thomas Heilman (CA-Y) – 2:00.36
  7. Dare Rose (UN-1) – 2:00.38
  8. Connor Lamastra (DYNA) – 2:00.45

Martin Espernberger of Tennessee is the fastest qualifier going into tonight’s championship final, as he posted a time of 1:57.70 to win heat six. Luca Urlando took 2nd place in this heat, hitting the wall in 1:58.81 to qualify 3rd overall. Urlando has been as swift as 1:53.84 in the event, which he posted at the 2019 Clovis Pro Swim Series stop.

Trenton Julian was victorious in heat five, winning in 1:58.57 to qualifying 2nd overall for tonight’s ‘A’-final. Julian took the race out in 56.24 before closing in 1:02.10, winning his heat by about two seconds.

Cal put two undergraduates into tonight’s championship final, with Gabe Jett (2:00.05) and Dare Rose (2:00.38) qualifying 4th and 7th, respectively.

Junior phenom Thomas Heilman hit the touchpad in 2:00.36 to place 3rd in heat seven, qualifying him 6th overall. Heilman owns a best time of 1:53.82 from the World Championships this past summer, where he placed 4th.

WOMEN’S 400 FREESTYLE – PRELIMS

  • World Record: 3:55.38 – Ariarne Titmus (2023)
  • American Record: 3:56.46 – Katie Ledecky (2016)
  • Pro Swim Series Record: 3:57.94 – Katie Ledecky (2018)
  • US Open Record: 3:57.94 – Katie Ledecky (2018)

Top 8:

  1. Katie Ledecky (GSC) – 4:07.50
  2. Paige Madden (NYAC) – 4:08.41
  3. Jillian Cox (TXLA) – 4:09.84
  4. Leah Smith (TXLA) – 4:11.62
  5. Julia Mrozinski (TENN) – 4:16.85
  6. Kate McCarville (TENN) – 4:17.05
  7. Alexis Yager (TNAQ) – 4:17.63
  8. Lillie Nesty (GSC) – 4:18.22

Katie Ledecky opened up her race strong, flipping through the first 100 in 58.81 before reaching the 200 in 2:01.51. She took the heat win in 4:07.50, with Jillian Cox posting a sub-4:10 effort of 4:09.84 to secure 2nd in the heat.

Paige Madden posted a time of 4:08.41 in heat five, advancing her through to the final in 2nd place. Madden split the race evenly, opening in 2:04.05 through the first 200 before closing in 2:04.36.

Olympic gold medalist Leah Smith clocked in at 4:11.62, qualifying 4th for tonight’s final. Smith won the bronze medal in this event at the 2022 World Championships in Budapest.

Tennessee posted three swimmers into tonight’s ‘A’-final, with Julia Mrozinski (4:16.85) leading teammates Kate McCarville (4:17.05), and Alexis Yager (4:17.63).

Texas commit Lillie Nesty will round out the field tonight, as she qualified 8th in 4:18.22.

MEN’S 400 FREESTYLE – PRELIMS

  • World Record: 3:40.07 – Paul Biedermann (2009)
  • American Record: 3:42.78 – Larsen Jensen (2008)
  • Pro Swim Series Record: 3:43.55 – Sun Yang (2016)
  • US Open Record: 3:43.53 – Larsen Jensen (2008)

Top 8:

  1. Felix Auboeck (AUT) – 3:51.89
  2. Lucas Henveaux (CAL) – 3:53.58
  3. Kieran Smith (RAC) – 3:54.17
  4. Bobby Finke (SPA) – 3:55.45
  5. Jay Litherland (SUN) – 3:55.76
  6. Joey Tepper (TENN) – 3:55.97
  7. Chip Wheelie Shoyat (CLPR) – 3:56.90
  8. Lukas Vetkoetter (TFA) & Levi Sandidge  – 3:58.33

2021 World Short Course Champion Felix Auboeck posted the fastest time in the men’s 400 freestyle heats, stopping the clock in 3:51.89 to win heat seven. He leads the field by nearly two seconds heading into the final tonight, with Lucas Henveaux (3:53.58) and Kieran Smith (3:54.17) the next closest qualifiers.

Bobby Finke, who won the 1500 free last night in 15:04.43, qualified 4th with a time of 3:55.45. Two other swimmers posted times in the 3:55-range, Jay Litherland (3:55.76) and Joey Tepper (3:55.97).

Notably, Lukas Vetkoetter and Levi Sandidge tied for 8th in 3:58.33. A potential swim-off may occur depending on scratches.

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JuW
4 months ago

is Xiobhan Haughey swimming??? Shes on the picture

Hank
4 months ago

Heilman sandbagging the 2fly prelim. Expect him to hit the gas tonight.

Jimmyswim
4 months ago

Wow Gretchen matched her time from worlds. Must be fully tapered

Jimmyswim
Reply to  Jimmyswim
4 months ago

Lol come on this is a great joke

Awsi Dooger
4 months ago

There wasn’t enough attention on Manuel entering this meet. She’s a more interesting story than Dressel, IMO. Every meet she looks smoother, doing more with less effort.

Taa
Reply to  Awsi Dooger
4 months ago

I’m still waiting for her to do a fast 50 before I jump on her bandwagon. She probably has a relay spot on lockdown at this point

Troyy
Reply to  Awsi Dooger
4 months ago

Finally I agree with a comment from Mr Awsi Dooger.

Diehard
4 months ago

Is Simone the only asu pro at meet? I knew Smith scratched earlier in week. Nothing special from them this morning

Jay Ryan
Reply to  Diehard
4 months ago

Jay Litherland

Samuel Huntington
Reply to  Diehard
4 months ago

Ryan Held.

Adrian
Reply to  Diehard
4 months ago

Ryan Held

Swimmer.
Reply to  Diehard
4 months ago

The flu bug has hit the ASU pros.

Breezeway
Reply to  Diehard
4 months ago

Nothing special from them? were there any special swims in prelims from anyone?

Diehard
Reply to  Breezeway
4 months ago

Simone was good. UVA were decent

Diehard
Reply to  Breezeway
4 months ago

Jack Alexy was pretty good this am too

CanSwimFan
Reply to  Diehard
4 months ago

I think Simone had an excellent morning swim. She seems to be progressing really well. I look forward to seeing what she can do in finals tonight.

CavaDore
Reply to  Diehard
4 months ago

…and Paige Madden

mds
Reply to  Diehard
4 months ago

Others in ASU Pro training group entered in meet:

Xander Skinner (No show in 100 Free)
Taylor Ruck
Paige Madden
Grant House
Luca Urlando
Chloe Isleta (No Show in 100 Free)

Swimmers on ASU roster entered in meet:

Jarod Arroyo
Jack Schuster (No Show 100 free)

John
4 months ago

Is 4:07 Katie’s slowest 400 since like 2012?

antibreastroker
Reply to  John
4 months ago

2013… hopefully this evening is better

whoisthis
Reply to  John
4 months ago

2014 but shes holding back for finals

Last edited 4 months ago by whoisthis
Eric Angle
Reply to  John
4 months ago

Maybe she’s just getting better at holding back in prelims.

ncaa fan
Reply to  Eric Angle
4 months ago

Based on her 1500 from last night, I’d say she’s got a bit to drop tonight

Awsi Dooger
Reply to  Eric Angle
4 months ago

She has always been too fast in prelims, often leading to unrealistic time drop expectations in the comment section for the final

Yikes
Reply to  John
4 months ago

She has to do so little in prelims, it’s smart to coast.

Babashoff - Woodhead - Evans - Ledecky
Reply to  Yikes
4 months ago

She’s usually so much faster in prelims even in small meets.

She’s probably learned to hold back.

Hank
Reply to  John
4 months ago

Bro. She swam a 15:38 1500m last night lol

whoisthis
4 months ago

i think theres a tie for 8th in the 400 free lol

Caleb
4 months ago

Men’s 100 Free at trials is going to be brutal. Women’s field also looking pretty good, but the top 5 or 6 seem pretty clear-cut. I know there’s always an upset, but it’s not like the men this year where at least 5 or 6 guys will be crushed to not make it.

Smglsn12
Reply to  Caleb
4 months ago

I feel like there’s a full A B and C final’s worth of people in the men’s 100 free that are genuinely in contention for a 4×100 free relay spot