Taking a Closer Look At the USA Youth Olympics Roster

Last week, USA-Swimming announced it’s 8-person roster for the inaugural Youth Olympic Games in Singapore. This is a great group of swimmer, but there may be some names that our readers haven’t heard of. We wanted to take a minute to break down the roster, and give a little bit more info about these swimmers, as this is one of the first major international exposures for this group of swimmers that will likely be big names down the line, both in NCAA and National Team swimming.

It’s interesting to note, when looking through the roster, that there’s not a true breaststroker amongst them. Many of the swimmers, however, are excellent IM’ers, and I’m sure they will be able to muster up a darn good breaststroker to complete a medley relay.

What I’m really excited about is the fact that the roster spans the nation. Only one swimmer comes from the traditional swimming powerhouse triad of California, Florida, and Texas. One more comes from Pennsylvania, who is quickly wedging it’s way into that top tier. But there are also swimmers from non-traditional states like Oregon,  Delaware, and Minnesota, showing that swimming is alive and thriving in all parts of the country.

I, for one, am very excited about the Youth Olympics, as I think they are a wonderful event, and specifically the roster that Team USA is sending.

Boy’s Roster

Austin Ringquist, Hillsboro Heat, Hillsboro, Ore.- Austin is a high school junior at Hillsboro High in Oregon. He specializes in the IM (as a freshman and sophomore, he won set Oregon 5A HS State Records in the 200 IM), and backstroke events. His top LCM times are: 2:03.66 in the 200m back , 58.22 in the 100m back, 2:11.37 in the 200m IM, and 4:50.43 in the 400m IM. Austin also swam an impressive 52.84 in the 100m free as a 16 year old.

At this year’s Missouri Grand Prix, Austin finished 16th in the 200 IM, and won the consolation final in the 200 backstroke.

Erich Peske, De Anza Cupertino, Cupertino, Ca-Erich is a high school junior at Los Gatos High who specializes in butterfly. Among his many accomplishments in the water includes setting the meet record at the 2009 Clovis, California Sectionals meet in the 100 fly in a blistering time of 54.22, which outtouched Peter Davis, who was a member of Cal’s impressive butterfly contingent at the 2010 NCAA Championships, who also broke the meet record.

Erich’s best Long Course times are: 54.08 in  the 100m fly, 2:01.95 in the 200m fly, 2:06.99 in the 200m IM, and 51.46 in the 100m free, all set at the 2009 U.S. Open. At just barely 17 years old, Peske is definitely a name to watch for the future.

Steve Schmuhl, Boulder Swimming, Broomfield, Co.-Steve is a junior at Legacy High School in Broomfield, Colorado. Schmuhl is sort of the male version of her state-mate Missy Franklin, and might go down as one of the best Colorado junior swimmers in history when he’s done. In 2 years at Legacy High, Schmuhl has 4 state championships in the 100 and 200 freestyles, and has broken the 5A state record in each event twice. At 6’5″, Schmuhl is built like a prototypical elite freestyler,

Steve also has an impressive list of Colorado 15-16 Age Group records: 200 yard IM, 100 meter back, 200 yard back, 100 yard free, 100 meter free, 200 yard free, and 200 meter free.

His top meters times are: 52.07 in the 100m free, 1:52.14 in the 200m free, 58.00 in the 100m backstroke, 2:03.95 in the 200m backstroke, and 2:06.88 in the 200m IM. Steve also threw down an impressive 4:23.54 at last year’s SCY Juniors. All of these times were set in 2009 as a 16 year old.

Thomas Stephens, Nova of Virginia Aquatics, Richmond, Va.-Thomas is a junior at the Collegiate School in Richmond, Virginia, which is one of the dominant boy’s program in the state. His older sister, Carter, was all-conference this year as a freshman swimming for Susan Teeter at Princeton. At the 2010 Virginia Independent School State Championships, Thomas won the 100 fly and was the runner up in the 200 free. Thomas’ best event is likely the 200 free, but he chose to sit that out this season, in what was possibly a move to avoid Georgia-bound senior Jameson Hill, and attempt to score maximum points for his team.

His best meters times of the 2009 season were: 51.15 in the 100m free, 1:51.80 in the 200m free, 2:04.20 in the 200m fly.

Girl’s Roster

Allie (Allison) Roberts, Parkland Aquatic Club, Emmaus, Pa.-Allie is a junior at Emmaus high school in Emmaus, Pennsylvania. She was an A-finalist at both the 100m and 200m backstrokes at the 2009 Junior National Championships.

Her best 2009 meters times were: 1:02.51 in the 100m backstroke, 2:14.15 in the 200m backstroke, and 5:06.61 in the 400m IM. Allie is also a pretty good butterflier, having scored a 56.26 in the 100 yard fly at the PIAA state championships as a sophomore.

Jordan Mattern, Colorado Stars, Centennial, Co.-Often overshadowed by her all-world teammate Missy Franklin, Mattern has quietly developed into one of the best middle-distance freestyler in the country. Along with Franklin, and teammates Caroline Piehl and Kelly Naze, Mattern was on the Jr. Nationals meet-record setting 400m free relay (4:38.52). She also finished 6th in the 400m individual freestyle.

Mattern swims for Cherry Creek scholastically, where she is the Colorado all-class record holder in the 200y freestyle (1:48.82) and class 5A record holder in the 100y freestyle (50.79). Her best time also blows away the state record in the 500y free, but she didn’t swim that at the state meet due to the overall strength of her team in the event (her teammate Bonnie Brandon broke the state record anyways.)

Mattern’s best meters times are: 57.67 in the 100m free, 2:02.99 in the 200m free, 4:15.55 in the 400m free, 2:18.65 in the 200m IM, 4:54.08 in the 400m IM.

Kiera Janzen, Star Swim Team, White Bear Lake, MN.-Kiera is a junior at Cretin Durham-Hall High School, a private school in St. Paul, Minnesota. As a sophmore, she set the Minnesota high school state records in both the 200 and 500 freestyles, and then repeated as champ again in 2009 as a junior. Another mid-distance star on the women’s side, Janzen finished one spot behind Mattern in the 400m free at the 2009 Speedo Jr. Nat’s.

Kiera has transformed herself from a sprinter in her first year in high school. As a freshman, she was third in the 50 free (24.04 yards) and tied for first in the 100 free (51.75). The move demonstrates her true talent and athletecism in the water, in addition to undoubtedly hard work.

Kiera’s top times in the 2009 LCM season are: 57.81 in the 100m freestyle, 2:02.94 in the 200m free, and 4:15.89 in the 400m free.

Kaitlyn Jones, Delaware Swim Team, Newark De.-Kaitlyn is the “baby” of the bunch at only 15 years old and having just completed her freshman year at the Tatnall School in Greenville, Delaware. Despite her young age, she is already amassing an impressive resume, that includes to state individual titles in the 200 IM and 100 backstroke, and a state relay title. She also crushed the 200 IM state record by almost 3 seconds at 2:00.60. The old record, held by Erin Mulsehnock, was 2:03.52. All of this in her first year of high school swimming.

Kaitlyn’s top meters times of the 2009 season, the majority of which she was 14 years old for, are 2:19.23 in the 200m IM, 4:51.00 in the 400m IM, 2:14.84 in the 200m back, and 1:03.94 in the 100m back. She also excells in the fly, where she qualified for Summer Juniors with a 2:02.93 in the 200 SCY fly.

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About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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