Blueseventy Weekly Wonders of Age Group Swimming (National Team Edition, Pt. 1)

Thanks to blueseventy, our presenting partner for  Weekly Wonders of Age Group Swimming.

Without any live meets taking place, we’re looking back at the breakout swims and seasons of current U.S. National Team members.

Zane Grothe, 12, Boulder City Henderson Swim Team (BCH-CA): 500 free, 5:01.57 – After hovering in the mid-5:20s in the 500 free from January through November of 2004, a 12-year-old Zane Grothe dropped significant time in five consecutive swims in the 2004-05 season. In December 2004, he had the biggest drop – going from 5:21.17 to 5:11.59 – and then went 5:09.18 in January 2005. Grothe dropped to 5:06.95 in February of that year, and then at March’s Junior Olympics meet, the former American record holder went 5:02.54 then 5:01.57. Grothe didn’t best that time during the 2005-06 season, but broke five minutes for the first time in November 2006 and was at 4:40.33 by the end of that season.

Bethany Galat, 14, South Bend Swim Club (SBSC-IN): 200 breast, 2:25. 73 – A 14-year-old Bethany Galat entered 2010 having never been under 2:30 in the 200-yard breaststroke. In February 2010, she dropped over two second to go a best time of 2:29.42. Three weeks later at the 2010 Indiana Age Group State meet, she dropped to 2:25.73, her first quadruple-A cut in anything longer than a 50 (she’s now a 200 breast specialist on the U.S. National Team). At the same meet, she also picked quadruple-A cuts in the got them in the 100 breast (1:06.99), in which she dropped well over a second, and 200 IM (2:11.53), in which she dropped nearly five seconds.

Chase Kalisz, 17, North Baltimore Aquatic Club (NBAC-MD): 400 IM, 4:26.97 – At 2011 Summer Nationals, his first time ever swimming the long course 400 IM, a 17-year-old Chase Kalisz hit an Olympic Trials cut at 4:26.97. Swimming for Michael Phelps‘ team, Kalisz’s Nationals performance ramped up comparisons between the two. Earlier that summer,  the future world champion Kalisz had already secured a Trials cut in the 200 fly (2:02.71), and had one in the 200 breast (2:20.63) from the prior year.

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About Torrey Hart

Torrey Hart

Torrey is from Oakland, CA, and majored in media studies and American studies at Claremont McKenna College, where she swam distance freestyle for the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps team. Outside of SwimSwam, she has bylines at Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports, SB Nation, and The Student Life newspaper.

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