2024 W. NCAAs: Watch Gretchen Walsh Breaks All Her Records in the 50 Free (Day 2 Race Videos)

2024 WOMEN’S NCAA SWIMMING AND DIVING CHAMPIONSHIPS

We’re done with Day 2 of the 2024 Women’s Division I NCAA Championships. If you missed finals fear not because we’ve compiled all the championship finals below.

Women’s 500 Freestyle — Final

Courtesy: ugaswimming

  • NCAA Record: 4:24.06 — Katie Ledecky, Stanford (2017)
  • Meet Record: 4:24.06 — Katie Ledecky, Stanford (2017)
  • American Record: 4:24.06 — Katie Ledecky, Stanford (2017)
  • U.S. Open Record: 4:24.06 — Katie Ledecky, Stanford (2017)
  • Pool Record: 4:24.06 — Katie Ledecky, Stanford (2017)
  • 2023 Champion: 4:36.62 — Kensey McMahon, Alabama

Top 8: 

  1. Bella Sims (FLOR) — 4:32.47
  2. Emma Weyant (FLOR) — 4:33.70
  3. Anna Peplowski (IU) — 4:34.06
  4. Aurora Roghair (STAN) — 4:34.26
  5. Cavan Gormsen (UVA) — 4:35.37
  6. Abby McCulloh (UGA) — 4:37.13
  7. Rachel Stege (UGA) — 4:37.26
  8. Dune Coetzee (UGA) — 4:40.08

The session could not have started better for the Florida Gators. Freshman Bella Sims and junior Emma Weyant went 1-2 in the 500 freestyle, picking up 37 points for the Gators.

Sims jumped on the race from the start and built up a lead that she would carry through to the finish. The field moved up on her during the back half of the race but she had enough room to claim her first individual NCAA title in her first individual event swum at an NCAA Championships.

Sims swam a season-best 4:32.47, improving her SEC record from midseason. Meanwhile, her teammate Weyant went under 4:34 for the first time in her career. Weyant swam 4:33.70 for 2nd place.

Anna Peplowski, who did not race this event in 2023, swam her second lifetime best of the day to grab 3rd place. Peplowski, who started this season with a 4:48 personal best dropped a 4:34.06.

Women’s 200 IM — Final

Courtesy: ugaswimming

  • NCAA Record: 1:48.37 — Kate Douglass, Virginia (2023)
  • Meet Record: 1:48.37 — Kate Douglass, Virginia (2023)
  • American Record: 1:48.37 — Kate Douglass, Virginia (2023)
  • U.S. Open Record: 1:48.37 — Kate Douglass, Virginia (2023)
  • Pool Record: 1:51.62 — Meghan Small, Tennessee (2019)
  • 2023 Champion: 1:48.37 — Kate Douglass, Virginia (2023)

Top 8:

  1. Alex Walsh (UVA) – 1:49.20 *Pool Record* 
  2. Isabel Ivey (FLOR) – 1:51.96
  3. Josephine Fuller (TENN) – 1:52.04
  4. Lucy Bell (STAN) – 1:52.64
  5. Phoebe Bacon (WISC) – 1:53.16
  6. Kelly Pash (TEX) – 1:53.64
  7. Ella Nelson (UVA) – 1:53.65
  8. Zoe Dixon (FLOR) – 1:54.27

Alex Walsh became the second swimmer to break 1:50 in the 200 IM with her win here in Athens. After finishing third last year, Walsh reclaimed the NCAA title, winning the 200 IM crown for the third time in her career.

Walsh swam 1:49.20, bettering her previous best of 1:50.07 by .87 seconds. She was faster than her PB in three of the four legs but it was the breaststroke leg that made the most difference for her.

Isabel Ivey put together a huge final 50 yards to finish 2nd out of lane 1. Ivey swam a field best 26.57 freestyle leg, which powered her to a new personal best of 1:51.96 and her first sub-1:52 swim.

Meanwhile, Josephine Fuller rounded out the top three in 1:52.04, a personal best of her own. In 2023, Fuller was 11th in the ‘B’ final, meaning that she moved up eight places tonight. She was six-tenths clear of Lucy Bell, who took 4th in 1:52.64.

Women’s 50 Freestyle — Final

Top 8:

  1. Gretchen Walsh (UVA) — 20.37 *New Everything Record
  2. Katharine Berkoff (NCS) — 21.09
  3. Jasmine Nocentini (UVA) — 21.10
  4. Christiana Regenauer (LOU) — 21.48
  5. Julia Dennis (LOU) — 21.60
  6. Gabi Albiero (LOU) — 21.67
  7. Brady Kendall (MICH)/Maxine Parker (UVA) — 21.74
  8. (tie)

Gretchen Walsh just kept doing Gretchen Walsh things in the 50 freestyle championship final. In other words, she rebroke all her records again. After putting up a 20.41 in prelims, Walsh was even faster in the final blazing to the win in 20.37.

Since tying Maggie MacNeil‘s 20.79 NCAA mark at the 2023 Tennessee Invite, Walsh has outright broken that record four times in 2024. Walsh came into this season with a 20.83 personal best, which’s she’s now cut .46 seconds from. She’s now .42 seconds faster than anyone else in history has been in this event.

Everyone else in this field was in Walsh’s shadow but Katharine Berkoff still had an excellent swim. Berkoff pipped Jasmine Nocentini by a hundredth for second place, getting revenge after Nocentini beat her at ACCs. Berkoff’s 21.09 is a personal best, bettering her previous standard of 21.14. The swim moves her up to 6th on USA Swimming’s all-time performers list ahead of Nocentini who swam her own lifetime best of 21.10.

Women’s 200 Freestyle Relay — Timed Final

Courtesy: uvaswimming

  • NCAA Record: 1:23.63 — Virginia (J. Nocentini, G. Walsh, A. Walsh, M. Parker), 2024
  • Meet Record: 1:24.51 — Virginia (K. Douglass, G. Walsh, L. Cuomo, M. Parker), 2023
  • American Record: 1:23.87 — Virginia (K. Douglass, G. Walsh, L. Cuomo, A. Walsh), 2023
  • U.S. Open Record: 1:23.63 — Virginia (J. Nocentini, G. Walsh, A. Walsh, M. Parker), 2024
  • Pool Record: 1:26.31 — California (A. Weitzeil, A. Bilquist, V. Hull, F. Osman), 2016
  • 2023 Champion: 1:24.51 — Virginia (K. Douglass, G. Walsh, L. Cuomo, M. Parker), 2023

Top 8:

  1. Virginia (J. Nocentini, G. Walsh, A. Walsh, M. Parker) — 1:24.05 *Pool and Meet Record*
  2. Louisville (G. Albiero, C. Regenauer, J. Dennis, E. Welch) — 1:25.47
  3. Texas (G. Cooper, A. Longi, E. Sticklen, K. Pash) — 1:26.17
  4. USC — 1:26.47
  5. Michigan — 1:26.55
  6. Tennessee — 1:26.65
  7. NC State — 1:26.75
  8. Indiana — 1:26.84

DQ: California

The Virginia quartet of Nocentini, G. Walsh, A. Walsh, and Maxine Parker were off the NCAA and U.S. Open records they swam at ACCs last month; however, they still dominated the 200 freestyle relay. Nocentini led off in 21.26, turning things over to G. Walsh who clocked a 20.23 split. That’s the third fastest 50 free split of all-time and G. Walsh now owns all those top three times. A. Walsh split 21.23 and Parker anchored in 21.33.

That stopped the clock at 1:24.05 setting new meet and pool records. Virginia won the race by 1.42 seconds as Louisville claimed 2nd place in 1:25.47. The Cardinals had three swimmers in the 50 freestyle ‘A’ final which helped them get separation from 3rd place Texas (1:26.17).

Albiero led off for the Cardinals in 21.77, just a tenth off her time from the ‘A’ final. Regenauer swam their fastest split of 21.11 with Dennis right behind her in 21.17. Sophomore Ella Welch anchored in 21.42.

Grace Cooper led off for the Longhorns with a 21.92. Ava Longi (21.31), Emma Sticklen (21.35), and Kelly Pash (21.59) followed Cooper and combined for a 1:26.17.

Scores Thru Day 2

  1. Virginia — 210.5
  2. Florida — 163
  3. Texas — 141
  4. Stanford — 105
  5. Tennessee — 104
  6. Louisville — 99
  7. USC — 94
  8. Indiana — 87
  9. Michigan — 80.5
  10. Georgia — 75
  11. Ohio State — 61
  12. California — 59
  13. NC State — 50
  14. Wisconsin — 40
  15. UNC — 34
  16. Duke — 33
  17. Texas A&M — 26
  18. Utah — 14
  19. Minnesota — 13
  20. Auburn/Alabama — 12
  21. (tie)
  22. Arizona State — 11
  23. Rutgers/Virginia Tech/LSU — 6
  24. (tie)
  25. (tie)
  26. Northwestern — 4
  27. Kansas — 3
  28. Akron — 1

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Tim T
2 months ago

Thx fa da video

Hmm
2 months ago

Do we have to pay extra for audio?

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Hmm
2 months ago

Listen to Rowdy obsess over reaction times?

No thanks!

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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