Simonas Bilis is a sprint freestyle specialist and member of the Lithuanian National Team. Originally from Panevezys, Lithuania, Bilis is a standout NCAA All-American at North Carolina State University. Swimming runs in the Bilis family, as his brother Justinas, swam at East Carolina University.
Bilis joined the Wolfpack after competing at Panevezys Vytautas Zemkalnis Gymnasium. In his freshman season Bilis was a member of the ACC Championship Team, where he won silver medals in the 200 yard free and the 200 yard free relay, as well as a bronze in the 50 free, and finished 4th in the 100.
He advanced to the NCAA Championships as a relay-only swimmer, garnering All-America honors in the 200, 400 and 800 yard free relay teams.
In his sophomore season at NC State, Bilis won his first individual ACC championship with a win in the 100 yard free, and also finished all-ACC in the 50 and 200 yard freestyles. He qualified for NCAA’s both individually and as a relay swimmer this second time around, earning honorable mention All-America honors in both the 50 and 100 yard free events. The 42.19 he swam in the 100 yard free was a new school record.
Bilis dominated the ACC Championships in his junior season, becoming the first male in the ACC to break 19 seconds in the 50-yard free. He was also an ACC Champion in the 100 and 200 free as well as the 200, 400 and 800 free relays, helping him to earn the ACC Male Swimmer of the Year.
At the NCAA Championships Bilis earned more All-America honors this time in three individual and two relay events. He advanced to the championship finals of both the 50-yard free and the 100-yard free, finishing in 3rd and runner up. Bilis also finished 10th (2nd in the consolation final) of the 200-yard free.
Bills left his best season until his last season, becoming an National Champion in the 4×100-yard freestyle relay. He also picked up individual medals, finishing second in the 50 and 100-yard freestyle and third in the 200-yard freestyle.
Bills also earned the ACC Swimmer of the Year Award for the second straight year after winning the 200-yard freestyle and four relays at the conference championships. He came second in the 50 and 100-yard freestyle at the ACC Championships.
2015 World Championships
After a stunning junior season at NC State Bilis was selected to Lithuania’s World Championships Team. He competed in the 50-meter free, where he just missed advancing to the semi-finals of the event, finishing 20th overall.
2016 Rio Olympic Games
In his first Olympics, Bilis made the final in the 50 meter freestyle, finishing 8th in 22.08. His fastest time came in the semi-final were he swam a 21.71. Bilis also swam the 100 meter freestyle, finishing 30th in 49.16. In the 4×100 meter medley relay, Bilis swam the freestyle leg to help Lithuania finish 14th.