The 2018 NCAA Women’s Swimming & Diving Championship pre-selection psych sheets have been released, and Stanford’s Ella Eastin is entered in the 200IM, 400IM, and 200 fly, and not the 500 free.
Eastin, a Stanford junior, is fresh off blasting a new 200 fly American record (1:49.51) and going under 400 IM record pace (3:57.32) just behind Katie Ledecky at last week’s Pac-12 Championships. She is seeded 1st in the 200 fly, 2nd behind Ledecky in the 400 IM, and 5th in the 200 IM with a 1:53.24.
However, she also threw down a 4:34.04 500 free last week, good for #2 in the nation, but won’t be swimming it at NCAAs. That event comes on the same day as the 200 IM.
With Eastin’s versatility, she doesn’t really have an “off” event out of the four options, so the move is not terribly surprising. After taking 2nd in 1:52.27 at NCAAs last year, she’s certainly still in title contention in the stacked 200IM field that will feature Sydney Pickrem (1:52.69), Kathleen Baker (1:52.70), Asia Seidt (1:53.04), and Meghan Small (1:53.05). Of the top 5, Eastin is the only swimmer whose entry time was swum outside of a conference championship meet, as she went the time at the Pac 12 vs. USA College Challenge back in October.
In addition to Ledecky’s #1 seed, Stanford freshman Lauren Pitzer is seeded 7th in the 500 with a 4:36.61, and fellow IMer Brooke Forde has opted to swim the 500 over the 200 IM, likely also grabbing some points for Stanford in Eastin’s absence.