Reported by Lauren Neidigh (Sister of Ashley).
WOMEN’S 500 FREE FINALS
- American Record: 4:24.06, Katie Ledecky, 2017
- U.S. Open Record: 4:24.06, Katie Ledecky, 2017
- Meet Record: 4:29.54, Katie Ledecky, 2014
- Pool Record: 4:26.46, Katie Ledecky, 2016
- GOLD: Ashley Neidigh, Indiana, 4:34.47
- SILVER: Mallory Comerford, Louisville, 4:35.78
- BRONZE: Erica Sullivan, SAND, 4:38.13
Indiana postgrad swimmer Ashley Neidigh took off with the early lead in the 500 free, extending her lead over Sandpipers of Nevada’s Erica Sulivan after the 100 mark. Neidigh held on to her lead throughout the race, posting a huge best time of 4:34.47 to win it. That beat her former best 4:39.91 by over 5 seconds.
Louisville All-American Mallory Comerford overtook Sullivan for the 2nd place spot with 100 yards to go. She started to close the gap on Neidigh with a 54.17 across the final 100, but wound up 2nd in a quick 4:35.78. Comerford finished well under the NCAA ‘A’ cut of 4:36.30. That marked her first sub-4:36 swim as she came into the meet with a lifetime best 4:36.16 from the 2017 NCAA meet.
Sullivan held on for 3rd behind Comerford in 4:38.13, while Louisville’s Sophie Cattermole was just off the podium in 4:40.99. That time for Sullivan was a new best by over a second. Cattermole was just half a second shy of her personal best 4:40.47 from prelims. She’s a second faster than what it took to qualify for last season’s NCAA meet.