2024 SEC Championships: Day 5 Prelims Live Recap


Day 5 Prelims Heat Sheet

It’s time for the last prelims session of the 2024 SEC Championships. On the schedule are heats of the 200 backstroke, 100 freestyle, and 200 breaststroke. After the prelims session there are also the slower heats of the 1650 freestyle with the fastest women’s and men’s heat racing at the start of finals.

Bella Sims broke the SEC record in the 200 butterfly yesterday. Then to close the session, she led-off the 400 medley relay with a 50.07 100 backstroke, which would’ve won the individual event. She’s slated to take on the 200 backstroke on the last day of the championships where she’s the top seed (1:51.15).

After becoming the fastest freshman 100 backstroker in the NCAA, her Gator teammate Jonny Marshall is the hot favorite heading into the men’s 200 back. He’s the top seed (1:38.52) and there are three other men–Aidan Stoffle, Bradley Dunhamand Ian Grumwith 1:38 seed times which should make it an interesting race for lanes in tonight’s final.

Camille Spink has been on fire at this meet. In the 100 freestyle, she is aiming to set herself up well for the sprint freestyle sweep. So is Jordan Crooks and he’ll face off against defending NCAA champion Josh Liendo. The pair own the top two times in the nation this year with Liendo at 40.90 and Crooks swimming 41.03.

Mona McSharry and Aleksas Savickas are both looking to sweep the breaststrokes after winning the 100 breast last night. McSharry set a new SEC Championship record twice in the 100 breast, bringing the mark down to 57.00 after swimming at 2024 Worlds last week.



  1. Florida — 1051.5
  2. Tennessee — 837
  3. Texas A&M — 664.5
  4. Auburn — 625.5
  5. Georgia — 617
  6. Alabama — 473
  7. South Carolina — 459
  8. LSU — 392
  9. Kentucky — 307
  10. Missouri — 281.5
  11. Arkansas — 260
  12. Vanderbilt — 162


  1. Florida — 1198.5
  2. Auburn — 837
  3. Tennessee — 822
  4. Georgia — 791
  5. Texas A&M — 757.5
  6. LSU — 431
  7. Missouri — 415
  8. Alabama — 366
  9. South Carolina — 324
  10. Kentucky — 319

Women’s 200 Backstroke — Prelims

  • NCAA Record: 1:47.24 – Beata Nelson, Wisconsin (2019)
  • SEC Record: 1:48.06 —  Rhyan White, Alabama (2020)
  • SEC Championship Record: 1:48.06 —  Rhyan White, Alabama (2020)
  • Pool Record: 1:48.06 —  Rhyan White, Alabama (2020)
  • 2024 NCAA ‘A’ Standard: 1:50.50
  • 2023 NCAA Invited Time: 1:53.34

‘A’ Final Qualifiers: 

  1. Bella Sims (FLOR) — 1:50.78
  2. Josephine Fuller (TENN) — 1:51.36
  3. Miranda Grana (TAMU) — 1:51.69
  4. Amy Riordan (SCAR) — 1:52.85
  5. Grace Fredericks (UKY) — 1:52.97
  6. Catherine Choate (FLOR) — 1:53.18
  7. JoJo Ramey (FLOR) — 1:53.62
  8. Aviv Barzelay (TAMU) — 1:53.95

There was a changing of the guard during the heats of the women’s 200 backstroke. Six of the ‘A’ finalists are underclassmen and there are no seniors.

Bella Sims won the final heat with ease, splitting 53.19/57.59 on her way to a season-best time of 1:50.78. She’s the top qualifier and is looking for her third individual SEC title of the meet tonight. Leading off last night’s 400 medley relay, she scared the SEC 100 backstroke record with a 50.07.

Josephine Fuller and Miranda Grana, the silver and bronze medalists in the 100 back, locked down the 2nd and 3rd seeds, respectively, for the ‘A’ final. Fuller clocked a season-best 1:51.36. Grana won the first of the circle-seeded heats in a new personal best of 1:51.69. It’s a 1.61 second drop for the Aggie freshman, who’s been dropping time all season and has only continued to do so at these championships. In the 100 back she swam PBs in prelims and finals, so watch for her to make a move in the final.

Amy Riordan dropped 1.60 seconds from her best, qualifying 4th in 1:52.85.

There are three Gator freshmen in the final. Catherine Choate (6th, 1:53.18) and JoJo Ramey (8th, 1:53.62) join Sims in the ‘A’ final.

Men’s 200 Backstroke — Prelims

  • NCAA Record: 1:35.73 — Ryan Murphy, Cal (2016)
  • SEC Record: 1:35.75 — Shaine Casas, Texas A&M (2021)
  • SEC Championship Record: 1:36.85 — Shaine Casas, Texas A&M (2021)
  • Pool Record: 1:37.20 — Shaine Casas, Texas A&M (2020)
  • 2024 NCAA ‘A’ Standard: 1:39.13
  • 2023 NCAA Invited Time: 1:40.62

‘A’ Final Qualifiers:

  1. Bradley Dunham (UGA) — 1:38.46
  2. Jonny Marshall (FLOR) — 1:38.57
  3. Aidan Stoffle (AUB) — 1:38.85
  4. Nate Stoffle (AUB) — 1:39.41
  5. Ruard van Renen (UGA) — 1:39.54
  6. Ian Grum (UGA) — 1:40.09
  7. Tommy Hagar (BAMA) — 1:40.20
  8. Sam Powe (UGA) — 1:40.32

There were just four heats of the men’s 200 backstroke. Heat 2–the first of the circle-seeded heats–was ruled by the Georgia Bulldogs, who went 1-2-3 and all qualified for the ‘A’ final. Fifth-year Bradley Dunham won the heat in a personal best 1:38.46, which held up over the next two heats as the fastest time of the morning.

His teammate Ruard van Renen undercut his personal best from 2023 NCAAs with a 1:39.54 to qualify 5th while Sam Powe snuck into the final in 8th (1:40.20).

Freshman Jonny Marshall won the 100 backstroke decisively yesterday (44.12). The 200 backstroke is generally seen as his better event, so we could be set for more fireworks tonight. Marshall swam a controlled race, winning heat 4 in 1:38.57 which puts him in lane 5 for the final.

Aidan Stoffle and Nate Stoffle both made it back, qualifying in 3rd (1:38.85) and 4th (1:39.41), both just off the personal bests the swam at midseason.

Last year it took 1:40.99 to make the championship final; this year it took 1:40.32, a .67 second drop.

Women’s 100 Freestyle – Prelims

  • NCAA Record: 45.56 —  Simone Manuel, Stanford (2017)
  • SEC Record: 45.83 — Erika Brown, Tennessee (2020)
  • SEC Championship Record: 45.83 — Erika Brown, Tennessee (2020)
  • Pool Record: 45.83 — Erika Brown, Tennessee (2020)
  • 2024 NCAA ‘A’ Standard: 47.18
  • 2023 NCAA Invited Time: 48.37

‘A’ Final Qualifiers: 

  1. Camille Spink (TENN) — 47.11
  2. Micayla Cronk (FLOR) — 47.89
  3. Brooklyn Douthwright (TENN) / Chloe Stepanek (TAMU) — 47.97
  4. (tie)
  5. Helena Jones (UGA) — 48.33
  6. Diana Petkova (BAMA) — 48.47
  7. Sierra Smith (UMIZ) — 48.52
  8. Polina Nevmovenko (AUB) — 48.60

Another best time for Camille Spink and she’s the top qualifier in the women’s 100 freestyle. The Tennessee freshman logged 47.11, bettering the 47.28 she swam earlier this season at the Tennessee Invitational by .17 seconds. She’s the fastest qualifier a wide margin of .78 seconds, which should be a confidence boost for her as she aims for her second individual title of the meet.

Last year’s 4th place finisher Micayla Cronk moved through to the ‘A’ final in second, qualifying with a 47.89 that’s about a tenth off her season-best. She, Brooklyn Douthwrightand Chloe Stepanek are the only three returning to the ‘A’ final from 2023.

Douthwright and Spink tied for 3rd in 47.97. The time is a personal best for Douthwright and her first swim sub-48 seconds. Her previous best stood at 48.08, set at 2023 SECs.

Men’s 100 Freestyle — Prelims

  • NCAA Record: 39.90 — Caeleb Dressel, Florida (2018)
  • SEC Record: 39.90 — Caeleb Dressel, Florida (2018)
  • Meet Record: 40.87 — Caeleb Dressel, Florida (2018)
  • Pool Record: 41.55 — Matt Targett, Auburn (2009)
  • 2024 NCAA ‘A’ Standard: 41.50
  • 2023 NCAA Invited Time: 42.32

‘A’ Final Qualifiers:

  1. Josh Liendo (FLOR) — 40.95 (Pool Record) 
  2. Jordan Crooks (TENN) — 41.06
  3. Gui Caribe (TENN) — 41.46
  4. Reese Branzell (UGA) — 41.71
  5. Julian Smith (FLOR) / Macguire McDuff (FLOR) — 42.07
  6. (tie)
  7. Logan Tirheimer (AUB) — 42.10
  8. Jere Hribar (LSU) / Dillon Downing (UGA) — 42.16 *SWIM-OFF REQUIRED*

Update: Freshman Jere Hribar won the swim-off in a lifetime best of 41.76. The swim is his first sub-42 second effort. It is faster than he went in the prelims and would’ve moved him through to the final in 5th with no swim-off required. He’ll swim in lane 8 of the ‘A’ final while Dillon Downing will swim in lane 4 of the ‘B’ final.

Gui Caribe broke the pool record first, winning heat 4 in 41.46, in a season-best that’s just three-hundredths off his best. He got the party started but his record didn’t stand for long as Jordan Crooks broke it with the win in heat 5 and Josh Liendo lowered that mark in heat 6.

It’s Liendo’s 40.95 that stands as the pool record now. It’s an excellent morning swim for Liendo, just five-hundredths off his season best. He remains the only person in the conference to break 41 seconds this season, though the ACC’s Chris Guiliano has joined him under that barrier this week. Liendo is joined by his fellow Gators Julian Smith and Macguire McDuff in the ‘A’ final.

Crooks’ 41.06 moved him comfortably through to the final in second. It’s three-hundredths off his season best (41.03), setting him up well for finals tonight.

Georgia’s Reese Branzell dropped two-tenths from his personal best with a 41.71. Last year, Branzell won the ‘C’ final. Now, he’s moved up into the ‘A’ final as the 4th seed. Logan Tirheimer had a big prelims swim as well, posting a 42.10 and cutting .49 seconds from his best. Tirheimer finished 14th last year.

There will be a swim-off for the last spot in the championship final. Jere Hribar and Dillon Downing tied for 8th in 42.16.

Women’s 200 Breaststroke — Prelims

  • NCAA Record: 2:01.29 —  Kate Douglass, Virginia (2023)
  • SEC Record: 2:03.26 — Bethany Galat, Texas A&M (2018)
  • Meet Record: 2:04.62 — Sydney Pickrem, Texas A&M (2018)
  • Pool Record: 2:04.76 — Caitlin Leverenz, Cal (2012)
  • 2024 NCAA ‘A’ Standard: 2:05.73
  • 2023 NCAA Invited Time: 2:09.68

‘A’ Final Qualifiers:

  1. Mona McSharry (TENN) — 2:05.62
  2. Zoie Hartman (UGA) — 2:08.54
  3. Emelie Fast (TENN) — 2:08.72
  4. Alessia Ferraguti (UARK) — 2:09.11
  5. Avery Wiseman (BAMA) — 2:09.22
  6. Laura Goettler (SCAR) — 2:10.42
  7. Molly Mayne (FLOR) — 2:10.53
  8. Jocelyn Fisher (BAMA) — 2:10.76

Mona McSharry ran away with the final heat of the women’s 200 breaststroke. After breaking the SEC meet record in the 100 breaststroke twice yesterday (and dropping a 55.9 100 breast relay split) McSharry clocked 2:05.62. Not only was she well ahead of her heat, but she’s distanced herself from the entire field.

The second place qualifier, Zoie Hartman, is almost three seconds off McSharry’s pace, posting a 2:08.54. We’ll be back on meet record watch this evening, McSharry flirted with the record line for the majority of the race before it out-paced her at the end.

She’ll be joined in the ‘A’ final by her teammate Emelie Fast. Fast, an international swimmer from Sweden in her first year on Rocky Top, won bronze in the 100 breast yesterday. Here in the 200 breast, she swam a lifetime best 2:08.72, marking her first time sub-2:09. All the medalists from the 100 breast return in the 200; silver medallist Avery Wiseman qualified 5th with a 2:09.22.

Men’s 200 Breaststroke — Prelims

  • NCAA Record: 1:46.91 — Leon Marchand, Arizona State (2023)
  • SEC Record: 1:50.08 — Aleksas Savickas, Florida (2023)
  • Meet Record: 1:50.08 — Aleksas Savickas, Florida (2023)
  • Pool Record: 1:51.58 — Nic Fink, Georgia (2015)
  • 2024 NCAA ‘A’ Standard: 1:51.09
  • 2023 NCAA Invited Time: 1:52.94

‘A’ Finals Qualifiers: 

  1. Alex Sanchez (TAMU) — 1:51.18 (Pool Record) 
  2. Baylor Nelson (TAMU) — 1:52.57
  3. Vincent Ribeiro (TAMU) — 1:53.68
  4. Aleksas Savickas (FLOR) — 1:54.05
  5. Will Goodwin (UMIZ) — 1:54.37
  6. Peter Bretzmann (FLOR) — 1:54.45
  7. Jacques Rathle (AUB) — 1:55.19
  8. Alejandro Flores (AUB) — 1:55.27

The Aggies’ breaststroke group made a statement in the final event of prelims. Texas A&M swimmers own the top three qualifying spots, led by Alex Sanchez. Sanchez won the final heat in 1:51.18, breaking Nic Fink‘s nine-year-old pool record. The time is just off his season-best 1:51.13. His personal best stands at 1:51.09 from 2022.

Out of the un-circle seeded heat 2, Baylor Nelson popped a 1:52.57 which held up for 2nd seed heading into the ‘A’ final. Last year as a freshman, Nelson took on the 200 backstroke on the last day of these championships and finished 2nd. He’s chosen the 200 breast this year and it’s resulted in a new persona; best by over a second, shattering his old best of 1:53.97.

Vincent Ribeiro won his heat in 1:53.68, making it so that the center of the pool will be filled with Aggies tonight. Defending champion Aleksas Savickas moved through to the final in 4th, clocking a 1:54.05. He’s been as fast as 1:51.57 this season so expect him to make a move in finals and try to disrupt the Aggies.

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2 months ago

what time does the top heats of the mile start?

2 months ago

Speaking of Fink’s pool record I’d love to see what he could throw down given his world-best pullouts. US open???

Reply to  Noah
2 months ago

I like this. Although I think the best pullouts the world has ever seen were in Caeleb Dressel’s 100 breast in 2018.

2 months ago

TAMU with impressive 2 breast depth despite graduating A finalist Andres Puente from last year

Didnt Baylor Nelson swim 2 back last year too? Crazy versatility

Boxall's Railing
2 months ago

Dunham and Marshall will be in the middle of the Stoffle waffle tonight!

I miss the ISL (Go dawgs)
2 months ago

It’s going to be SO CLOSE between UGA, Auburn, and Tennessee for 2nd. UGA has 5 in the final of 2 back 4 of which are in the A, Tennessee has swimmers all over, Auburn has a good spread all over as well. Might come down to that relay.

Reply to  I miss the ISL (Go dawgs)
2 months ago

If it comes down to the relay TN will finish 2nd both in the relay and meet

2 months ago

Won’t look it up. But remember seeing someone comment how Liendo’s free was washed. Lol

Jan Zubik’s 2nd Biggest Fan
2 months ago

Masterclass effort from Jan Zubik this morning, dropped 5 seconds in his off event to make the 200 back B final. Versatility at its finest.

2 months ago

What happened to Chaney?

Split 47.9 as a junior and has done next to nothing in freestyle in either sized pool since then. And now he’s losing his 4 med spot to a freshman

About Sophie Kaufman

Sophie Kaufman

Sophie grew up in Boston, Massachusetts, which means yes, she does root for the Bruins, but try not to hold that against her. At 9, she joined her local club team because her best friend convinced her it would be fun. Shoulder surgery ended her competitive swimming days long ago, …

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