8 Important Swims From the Second Weekend of Mid-Season Rest Meets

This weekend was the second big mid-season invite weekend in the NCAA. Teams usually suit up and rest a little for these meets, so there are lots of fast swims. With so much swimming news happening over the last couple days it’s easy to miss things. To make sure you’re caught up, I compiled some highlights from this weekend.

Navy beat Army and historic pool record

In 1976, the US women’s national team swam an exhibition meet at West Point’s Crandall Pool. 7 American records were set, but the most memorable was 15 year old, future Olympic gold medalist Jill Sterkel‘s 100 free. Her time of 49.85 was the first time any woman had broken 50 seconds in the 100 yard free. It remained the pool record until Saturday, 42 years later, when Navy freshman Sarah Sorenson got under Sterkel’s time with a 49.82. Sorenson also broke the pool record in the 50 free (22.95, old record 22.97). Only 2 pool records now remain from that 1976 national team exhibition meet, the 800 free relay (7:15.64), and the 400 medley relay (3:49.99). One other bit of trivia: 1976 predates the existence of the Army women’s swim team by 2 years (Army added women’s swimming in 1978), so that pool record had stood for the entire existence of Army women’s swimming.

Navy won both the men’s and women’s meets vs Army (women: 199.5-100.5, men: 173-127). The men’s win was their 28th straight vs Army and raised their all time record against their rivals to 51-29. The Navy women’s win was their 30th straight over Army and raised their all time record to 33-4.

In total, the Navy women set 10 pool records in 16 events and broke 4 school and Patriot League records (Martina Thomas, 200 free 1:45.60; Lauren Barber, 100 breast 59.71, 200 breast 2:09.54; Kelly Huffer, 200 fly 1:57.06).

The men’s teams combined to break 5 pool records. Army set 10 school records, 7 by the men (200 medley 1:27.41; Tom Ottman, 1000 free 8:59.81; Kevin Lin, 200 free 1:36.50; Johnny Ellery, 200 fly 1:44.42; Tyler Kim, 200 back 1:45.04; Kevin Doo, 100 fly 47.29; Brian McKenrick, 100 back 47.56) and 3 by the women (200 medley 1:40.38; Kara Wineinger, 100 breast 1:01.43, 200 breast 2:15.42).

Texas find a breaststroker

Texas are the four time defending NCAA champions, but they aren’t without flaws. One of their biggest weaknesses suddenly and dramatically transformed into a strength on Thursday evening when freshman Charlie Scheinfeld split a 50.73 on the 400 medley relay.

Texas had a breaststroke problem last year. Their 400 medley relay missed the A final, in part due to a relatively slow breast split. The fastest 50 breast split they could find was from now-graduated and not on top form butterflier Joseph Schooling. There wasn’t a clear fix for this hole among their freshmen.

Scheinfeld was their top breaststroke recruit, but his best time in the 100 was 53.60, a time that would have ranked 85th in division 1 last year. Not exactly an instant fix. Texas needed a breakout performance and they got it. In addition to the relay split, Scheinfeld went a 51.41 in the individual 100 breast, an A cut and the 3rd best time in the country this year. He currently ranks ahead of star freshmen Reece Whitley of Cal (51.49) and Max McHugh of Minnesota (51.73). Scheinfeld also went the #4 200 breast time in the country (1:52.78).

If Texas had been able to replace Sam Stewart’s 52.98 breast split from finals of the 400 medley relay last year with Scheinfeld’s 50.73, they would have had the 2nd best time (they were actually 9th). This year with Scheinfeld on board they are ranked 3rd in the 400 medley with a relay that didn’t include their presumed top fly and free legs John Shebat and Tate Jackson.

Cal B medley relays go 3rd fastest times in the country

Before you look at Texas’s great weekend and declare them prohibitive title favorites, it’s important realize just how good Cal were this weekend. The Cal 200 medley relay put up the top time in the country (1:23.84) and their 400 medley relay went the #2 time (3:04.89), .01 behind top ranked NC State.

A top team put up some top relay times, not too surprising, right? Where things got a little crazy was their B relays. Both Cal B medleys put up the 3rd fastest times in the country (200 MR: 1:24.12, 400 MR: 3:05.10). This isn’t an obvious case of relay splitting. The A 200 medley out split the B on all 4 legs (the B 400 medley did have the faster back and breast splits). There aren’t B relays at nationals, but the depth this feat highlights will go a long way toward keeping Cal competitive with their rivals from Austin. Also, Andrew Seliskar has been the best swimmer in the country this year.

Loyola Maryland set 10 school records

The Greyhounds were on fire at their home invitational this weekend. The women broke 8 records and the men set 2. On the first day they set 6: 400 medley relay 3:44.95; Emma Schouten, 500 free 4:55.26; Megan Dickey, 50 free 23.56, Elizabeth Walsh, 100 back 55.93; Anne Hayburn, 50 fly 25.30; Jimmy Hayburn, 50 fly 22.50. The second day they dropped 4 more: Dickey, 100 free 50.26 (this also broke the pool record previously held by Katie Hoff); Schouten, 400 IM 4:25.81; Sung Lee, 200 fly 1:48.84; Devin Cronin 100 breast 1:02.69.

Both the Loyola men’s and women’s teams beat runner up Marist by over 200 points for the H2ounds Invitational title.

Maggie MacNeil sets 5 Michigan school records

The Canadian’s stellar freshman year continued this weekend when she broke school records in the 100 fly (49.97, 2nd in the country), 50 free (21.93, 7th), 200 free relay (1:27.61, 3rd), 400 medley relay (3:28.87, 1st), and the 200 medley relay (1:36.06, 4th).

MacNeil’s teammate Siobhan Haughey also broke her own school record in the 100 free (46.72)

Fairfield Women, NJIT Men win ECAC Winter Championships

Army/Navy wasn’t the only meet with meaningful team glory on the line this weekend. ECAC, which serves as almost a second conference for many of it’s members, had their winter championships. The NJIT men won with 1635 points, well ahead of 2nd place Monmouth (1306). The Fairfield women won in even more dominating fashion, taking a 1825-1332.5 point win over second place Wagner. The Fairfield women broke 3 school records and won 4 events on their way to the win.

Beata Nelson breaks the American record in the 100 back

Her time of 49.67 (watch it here) was the highlight of an outstanding weekend from the Wisconsin junior. Nelson also put up top in the nation times in the 200 IM (1:53.08) and 200 back (1:49.10). We spoke with Nelson about her record breaking swim. View that interview here.

An event change for Dean Farris?

Each of his first two years in the NCAA, Harvard junior Farris has swum the 200 free at nationals. This has come at the expense of his second best event, the 100 back which is only two events later on the nationals schedule. Last year he went a 44.81 100 back at the Ivy League championships, the 5th best time in the country all season, but didn’t swim the event at nationals.

Farris held the top 200 free time in the country entering nationals last year, so it’s hard to fault his choice to swim the 200. However, this weekend he swam a 45.00 in the 100 back leading off the 400 medley relay, the second best time in the country this season. His 200 free time of 1:33.53 is only 8th best in the country this year. Last year at the Texas Invite he was 1:33.27 and 46.32.

Another reason to switch: the 200 free is loaded with fast freshmen, the 100 back isn’t. Drew Kibler (1:32.20, 2nd this year) and Jack LeVant (1:32.61, 3rd) are already the 6th and 7th fastest freshmen ever and are likely the two fastest freshmen ever in the fall season. Also, Andrew Seliskar dropped a 1:30.86 and has to be thinking seriously about adding the event to his NCAA program. There aren’t any newcomers in the current top 10 in the 100 back. The field there is a bit more of a known quantity.

It’ll be hard to confidently predict which one Farris will do at nationals until after the Ivy League Championships, but it will likely be a tough choice for him and his coaches either way.

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The Ready Room

Dean’s 45.0 would be 3rd behind Stewart and Nikolaev, right?

Ervin

who cares

Swimguy

Stewart’s already been sub 45?

Swammer

Stewart has been 45.04

Repeating Paul

Since no one has put a complete recap of Seliskar’s weekend, I’ll list his performances. Day 1: 500 Fr 4:13.02 (prelims exhibition) 200 IM 1:43.42 prelims, 1:40.55 finals 50 Fr-r anchor 18.85 100 Br-r 51.32 Day 2: 100 Fl 46.3/45.59 100 Br 53.22 (prelims only) 200 Fr 1:30.82 (relay lead) Day 3: 200 Br 1:55.61/1:51.85 400 Fr-r anchor 42.06 18.85/42.06/1:30.82/4:13.0 Freestyles 51.3/1:51.8 Breaststrokes 45.5 100 Fly 1:40.5 200 IM. This type of performance is up at the top of the mountain with Dressel and Lochte at NCAAs. Maybe Dave Nolan in his prime could put together something simliar, but I’m not too sure about his ability to include the 500 Fr and 200 of a stroke at that level in… Read more »

hambone

I hope I’m wrong, but he could end up as the greatest NCAA swimmer to never win a individual title

hambone

If SwimSwam hasn’t already done an article on it, they should somehow quantify who’s the most versatile swimmer in NCAA history. Don’t quite know how to score that…..maybe Lochte?
Semi-related, what swimmers have scored the most points through their NCAA career, with or without relays.

It’s a really interesting question. The biggest issue I can see with answering it is that it’s going to be largely based on who CHOSE to do what. The NCAA system doesn’t really reward a swimmer for being great at lots of things – encourages swimmers to just swim their 4 best races at the biggest meet. We could have a rousing qualitative debate, but quantitatively, it could be really challenging to quantify who WAS THE MOST VERSATILE versus WHO SWAM THE BIGGEST VARIETY OF EVENTS AT BIG MEETS. Qualitatively, so long as we eschweing the argument that the best IMers automatically win most versatile, then it’s down to 3 names for me: Morozov, Nolan, and Dressel. Dressel probably takes… Read more »

hambone

Yes, Dressel’s year was just ridiculous but if I remember correctly the 200 IM and 100 breast weren’t done at the NCAA meet, which I think should be the first stipulation.
I know it was only two years, but didn’t Missy win 200/500 Fr, 100/200 BK and 200 IM?

They weren’t…but even short of his NCAA taper, he swam the fastest 100 breaststroke and 200 IM ever. To me, fastest ever short of taper is enough to make up for it not being at NCAAs.

Don’t think Missy ever won the 100 back or 500 free. She was 2nd in the 500 as a freshman, won the 200 free, 3rd in the 100; as a sophomore won the 200 IM, 200 free, and 200 back.

Caitlin Leverenz and Chase Kalisz are viable candidates as well, though Leverenz’s versatility really developed more as a post-grad than NCAA swimmer.

JP input is too short

Kalisz’s potential in Day 3 was pretty crazy – he probably could have scored in any of the 200s of stroke that day. But Seliskar is Kalisz with a slightly worse 400 IM and a lot more sprint speed. This of course assuming he backs up these midseason performances at NCAA, which I have no reason to believe he won’t. For right now, Nolan is second behind Dressel for me. 21.1/44.7/1:39.1 back and 1:39.3 IM, split 18.3/41.4/1:31.8 free and a 51.2 breast senior year, plus was also an elite flyer though that was the one place they never really needed him because they had several good flyers. Morozov is close, but I think he falls just short because he really… Read more »

Paul

I realize now that I forgot about Nolan’s 200 back, and figure that if he trained it he could have performed similarly in either the 2 breast or 2 fly.

I think a better headline for Seliskar’s weekend would be him breaking into the top 5 scy performers with Dressel, Nolan, Lochte, and Morozov. Dressel first, them the next 4 are a bit more subjective or need further analysis.

hambone

I don’t think Morozov, based on his NCAA career, deserves to be in the conversation. He won the 50/100 Free twice and was good on relays. Shields is more deserving

JP input is too short

Honestly, I forgot about Shields. He does deserve to be in the conversation. Of course the 1:39 200 fly, and Day 2 was really good – won 100 fly and 100 back and was a very good 200 freestyler as well. Plus 19.7 fly and 41.8 free relay splits.

Will 37

Anybody know where David Nolan is now? Haven’t heard news about his since 2016. Retired? Why?

Longhorn

I read that he decided to retire from swimming and focus on his career… I believe living in California. Good for him. Success in swimming doesn’t always mean… still swimming. He had an amazing career and was ready to move on. Just unfortunate that his best event in LCM made him 3rd to Phelps and Lochte.

Caleb

I believe Pablo Morales is the all-time scoring champ, right?

Pablo’s 11 individual titles are the most ever by a man. Tracy Caulkins won 12 (though in 2 of those years, she won more than the 3 races that swimmers are limited to now).

Having the most individual titles doesn’t guarantee the scoring champ (tbh, I don’t know how many places were scored back then), but that’s the best data point I can think of.

PACFAN

I did this with aggregating best 100 times for Dressel, Morozov, Grevers, (idk if i did Seli), Lochte, Phelps, and maybe another few! Dressel was the best, but I think if I reworked it with Seliskar’s new info he would be a significantly better ranking.

tea rex

Agreed. That was a monster weekend from Seliskar.

Sometimes it seems like a swimmer hits that feel for underwaters where they can do anything super fast. Seliskar didn’t event swim the 2 fly or 4im, (arguably?) his previous best events.

Noflykick

I know this is stating the obvious, but Sterkel was fast!

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