Calegan Becomes Midwest LSC’s Only NAG Record Holder

  8 Braden Keith | August 05th, 2012 | Club, Featured, National, News

Swimming in the corn belt has been on the rise in the last half-decade.. Since the University of Iowa got a brilliant new Aquatics Center, the state has been hosting more meets, putting out better college teams, and producing better age group swimmers. Nebraska has developed a hugely enthusiastic core after hosting two-straight Olympic Trials, and it’s showing in their new ability to turn out great swimmers as well.

And now, they have a National Age Group Record holder. On Sunday, at the Central Zone 14 & Under meet in Columbus, Indiana, Olivia Calegan of Lincoln Select Swimming, broke the 11-12 girls 50 breaststroke record with a 33.05. That takes down the 33.33 set by Olivia Anderson of the Aquajets in Minnesota, set in 2009; Anderson is now a 15-16 and still setting NAG Records with the famous Aquajets relays.

Earlier in the meet, Calegan won the 100 breaststroke in a very-fast 1:15.60, which puts her in the top 40 on the all-time list for that event, but there was nothing to indicate the explosion that was waiting in the 50. Other wins went down in the 200 breaststroke with a 2:44.27, and a 28.17 on the Midwestern Swimming 200 free relay (alongside, among others, Caroline Theil, daughter of contributors Ryan and Shelly Theil). The pair were also 2:26.9’s in the 200 IM, with Theil touching first on a great freestyle burst.

Calegan now is the only National Age Group Record holder from the Midwestern LSC for that matter that includes Nebraska and a small portion of Iowa. The Calegans recently moved from the Eastern end of Iowa to Lincoln, Nebraska.

She comes from a great swimming family; her older brothers Tyler and Haden Calegan swan for Iowa state powers Muscatine High School until the move, and Haden is the top-ranked swimmer from the state of Iowa in the class of 2013. Haden will remain in Iowa for his senior season.

Full meet results available here.

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8 Comments on "Calegan Becomes Midwest LSC’s Only NAG Record Holder"

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4 years 2 months ago

Lincoln Select is in Nebraska… nowhere close to the Illinois border 😉

4 years 2 months ago


Bob Calegan
4 years 2 months ago

I am Olivia’s dad and have coached her for years. Due to recent job changes, Norma and Louie Balogh (Lincoln Select Swimming) have been working with Olivia and have done a fantastic job in coaching/preparing her. I have always encouraged stretch goals for my swimmers (Olivia included). I knew that 33.33 was going to be about as big a stretch as we could put out there. Olivia started the season just trying to hit 35.00. Once we hit that… then we focused on 34.00. It took all summer and a half taper for D1’s (State) to get under (33.96). She then had a chance to open things up in a medley relay and went 33.29. Knowing that she could go that fast in a relay, I think Olivia knew it was still possible but only had one more week left in the season (Central Zones). She had a great second half to her taper and had a great start to the CZ meet. The meet was hot and outdoors. Weather/storms made the sessions a challenge but she kept her focus. Sunday afternoon finally arrived. This was the first finals session where she did not have to swim a relay and the 50 breast was her first open event. The weather gave her a break – it had cooled down a bit and the wind was finally not in her face. I could tell that she was a bit anxious behind the blocks but could see that her focus was only on her race. Olivia had gone 33.95 earlier in prelims. I knew that this was her last chance and I think my wife and I were more nervous about the swim than Olivia!. I guess we were more prepared to console Olivia for a great attempt and a great finish to a long hot summer season. They asked the swimmers to take their mark and then held them for what
seemed to be forever. They then had them stand up (all I could think is – “Let’s go!”). They brought them back down and then the race started… She had a great start and pull out. For those of you that have been around me at a meet, you know I am fairly vocal… I like to yell directions during each breath (and yes Olivia says that she can usually hear me fro just about anywhere). I can usually keep up with her normal tempo but in this race, she set such a tempo that I could hardly get a breath in!. In the morning swim, she said that she caught some water and choked a bit with 10 strokes to go… That was the only thing that I could focus on the last 25… could she actually keep this up and finish it! She got to the flags and the timing of her stroke hit perfectly into a small stretch at the finish. Sue (my wife) stopped watching the race about midway and focused on the clock. I forgot about the clock and could only focus on Olivia. She hit the wall and turned around – all I could see was her covering her face with her hands, I had know idea if she had just mad it or just missed, I turned around and looked at the clock – 33.05! I honestly do not remember too much after that (at least for the next couple of minutes!). A few folks got pictures of Sue and I going crazy in the stands (in fact my eyes are welling up as I am typing this). All I could think about was getting down in the deck and giving my little girl a huge squeeze! Over the years (and she is only 12) she has had a lot of success setting multiple USA and YMCA State records. She has had a few top 10 swims for an individual season. This past year she has started to hit the all-time top 100 list in various events. But there is no way to prepare emotionally for this type of swim. I know there are the Olympics in 4 years and who knows what will happen in that time frame. All I know is that she is already dreaming about it! This is a crazy sport that most who are not involved – really can not grasp what these swimmers go through on a daily basis (much less a season or year). I love you Olivia and I am so proud of what you have accomplished – Keep on dreaming Sunshine!

Olivia Calegan
4 years 2 months ago

Thank you so much Dad. I honestly couldn’t have done it without you. When you texted me and said “33.33 that’s what your going to go.” I thought you were crazy. If it weren’t for you I wouldn’t have pushed myself nearly as hard did. Every breath I took I heard your yell, and it helped me push through the rest of the race. Before the race I didn’t think I was gonna be able to get it. But once the race started all I could think about was finishing, looking up at the board, seeing that I broke the National Age Group Record, and looking up at your smiling face. When I did see that I broke it, I just went into shock. Everybody was congratulating me, but all I was doing was trying to find you up in the stands, but I couldn’t find you. I didn’t know that you were already running down to the pool deck to give me one of the most emotional hugs I’ve ever given. After the race I was literally shaking for a half an hour. Thank you so much for being there for me and pushing me. I love you daddy(:

4 years 2 months ago

“others” also include Midwestern Swimming’s only relay champion (tie no less) of the meet with teammates Cassie Roberts (teammate of Caroline Theil) and Shelby Mullendore.

Congrats to Olivia, the entire Midwestern Swimming team and all the swimmers who braved the drastic temperature and humidity fluxuations and occasional swim into a stiff wind.

Venessa Taylor
4 years 2 months ago

Oliva, WOW! I only got to see you swim a few times, but I am really excited for what is yet to come for you in this sport. I would LOVE to see you head to the next level in swimming and know that I KNEW YOU THEN. Your DAD is a very proud parent. We just started our swim season at Rocky and I plan to share your news with my team. I am watching the 2012 Olymic Games right now and I can see you there in 2016 at the age of 16, look at what the 15 year old has done.

Laurie Burk
4 years 2 months ago

Way to go Olivia!!!!! I remember looking down at this sweet little girl not that long ago when you were only 2 or 3 years old! I can’t believe this much time has went by. What a wonderful accomplishment. I’m sure your mom and dad are so proud of everything you have done and no matter where life takes you, I’m confident they will continue to be proud. Always remember God’s right there with you every step of the way and HE loves you more than all the rest of us combined. If God has a refigerator I bet your picture is right on the front!!!! Your a very blessed young lady to have such a supportive and loving mom and dad to help you acheive your dreams no matter what they are. Love you sweet thing.

Janet Heinen
4 years 2 months ago

Congratulations Olivia!! Best of luck to you and your family in reaching your goals.


About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

The most common question asked about Braden Keith is "when does he sleep?" That's because Braden has, in two years in the game, become one of the most prolific writers in swimming at a level that has earned him the nickname "the machine" in some circles. He first got his feet …

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