Future Georgia Bulldog Matt Sates (17) Crushes 50.72 SCM 100 Fly


There were several head-turning results that came out of day 2 of the 2020 South African Short Course Championships, even without Energy Standard ISL team member Chad Le Clos being in the water.

For instance, 18-year-old Seagull swimmer Rebecca Meder snared the 200m IM victory in a time of 2:09.76. That performance shreds Meder’s previous PB of 2:12.35 from this same meet 2 years ago, with tonight’s outing rendered her as South Africa’s 2nd fastest swimmer of all-time.

University of Georgia commit Matt Sates followed up his 400m freestyle victory from last night with another win here in the 200m IM. After establishing himself as the top-seeded swimmer with a morning effort of 1:59.77, 17-year-old Sates dropped the hammer, bringing his mark to 1:55.88 to beat the field by just under 4 solid seconds.

Sates also took on the 100 fly event as well, doubling up on gold with a huge 50.72 winning effort in that event. After touching the wall in a time of 52.26 in the morning, Sates fired off splits of 24.02/26.70 to beat the field by over 2 seconds and log a new lifetime best.

He now becomes South Africa’s 4th fastest performer of all-time, sitting behind some big names including Chad Le Clos (48.08), Lyndon Ferns (50.19), and Garth Tune (50.36). His 50.72 effort now places the teen within the world’s top 20 performers of the 2020/21 season.

But Sates wasn’t done, concluded his golden trifecta with a podium-topping 1:44.99 in the 200m freestyle. Opening in 51.01 and closing in 53.98, the future Bulldog obliterated his own previous PB of 1:46.88, rocketing himself up the list of all-time South African performers. Sates now ranks as 6th fastest performer ever form his nation, bumping Olympian Calvyn Justus to spot #7.

Seagulls’ Erin Gallagher proved too quick for the women’s 100m fly field, with the 21-year-old dropping a time of 58.35 as the only sub-minute swimmer of the field. Runner-up status went to last night’s 400m freestyle victor, Dune Coetzee, who touched in 1:00.44.

As for Gallagher, splitting 27.11/31.24, the sprint specialist’s 58.35 time still sits a ways off her own lifetime best of 57.78, a time she produced on the FINA World Cup circuit in 2018.

Additional Winners:

  • Commonwealth Games champion and 2019 World Championships medalist Tatjana Schoenmaker scorched a new South African national record in the women’s 100m breast, posting a time of 1:03.89. You can read more about Schoenmaker’s record-breaking outing here.
  • 16-year-old Pieter Coetze got it done for gold in the men’s 50m back, hitting a time of 24.08 to beat the field in the only mark under 25 seconds tonight.
  • Aimee Canny got under the 1:57 mark for the first time in the women’s 200m free, taking the national title tonight in a time of 1:56.78 over Coetzee who touched in 1:58.76. Meder rounded out the top 3 in the only other sub-2:00 result of 1:59.46. Schoenmaker was in the race, placing 4th in a time of 2:02.35.

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10 months ago

Wow, that time would have gotten 3rd in ISL match 4. He might be a NCAA title contender as soon as he arrives on campus.

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Swim analyst, businesswoman.

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