Reported by Lauren Neidigh.
WOMEN’S 500 FREE:
- NCAA record: Katie Ledecky (2017)- 4:25.15
- American record: Katie Ledecky (2017)- 4:25.15
- U.S. Open record: Katie Ledecky (2017)- 4:25.15
- Meet Record: Katie Ledecky (2017)- 4:28.37
- 2016 NCAA Champion: Leah Smith (Virginia)- 4:31.33
Katie Ledecky took it up a notch, to say the least, in tonight’s final, wrecking the American and NCAA Records with a blistering 4:24.06. She took it out in a 1:43.46 at the 200 and never looked back, breaking ahead of Virginia’s Leah Smith (4:28.90).
While she was a distant 2nd place, Smith’s swim is very historically significant as she becomes the 2nd swimmer in history to break 4:30 in the women’s 500 free.
A tight battle for 3rd saw Indiana’s Kennedy Goss come home like a train, splitting a 26.26 on the final 50 to out-touch Louisville’s Mallory Comerford (4:36.16). NC State’s Hannah Moore rounded out the top 5 in a personal best 4:36.85.
WOMEN’S 200 IM:
- NCAA record: Ella Eastin (2016)- 1:51.65
- American record: Ella Eastin (2016)- 1:51.65
- U.S. Open record: Ella Eastin (2016)- 1:51.65
- Meet Record: Ella Eastin (2016)- 1:51.65
- 2016 NCAA Champion: Ella Eastin (Stanford)- 1:51.65
Kathleen Baker built on Cal’s momentum from the 200 free relay, taking down Stanford’s defending champ Ella Eastin in the 200 IM. Baker’s 1:51.69 makes her the 2nd fastest performer in history, and she was just 4 hundredths shy of Eastin’s NCAA and American Records of 1:51.65 from last season’s NCAA meet. Eastin wound up in 2nd, clocking a 1:52.27 to hold off Texas’ Madisyn Cox (1:52.58).
Texas A&M’s Sydney Pickrem (1:53.30) and Bethany Galat (1:54.16) turned in a pair of personal best times to round out the top 5 for the Aggies. USC freshman Louise Hansson (1:54.79) and Kentucky freshman Asia Seidt (1:55.19) came in at 7th and 8th behind NC State All-American Alexia Zevnik (1:54.74).
Tennessee freshman Meghan Small had a big swim in the B final, clocking in at a personal best 1:53.31 for 9th place.
WOMEN’S 50 FREE:
- NCAA record: Olivia Smoliga (2016)- 21.21
- American record: Abbey Weitzeil (2016)- 21.12
- U.S. Open record: Abbey Weitzeil (2016)- 21.12
- Meet Record: Olivia Smoliga (2016)- 21.21
- 2016 NCAA Champion: Olivia Smoliga (Georgia)- 21.21
Ohio State’s Liz Li got the early lead, but Stanford’s Simone Manuel roared home to win the title in 21.17, just missing the American Record by 5 hundredths and setting a new NCAA Records. Li held on for 3rd, while Georgia’s Olivia Smoliga, the former NCAA Record holder, ran her down for 2nd.
Cal wound up with the next 3 places, as Farida Osman (21.38), Abbey Weitzeil (21.58), and Maddie Murphy (21.76) took 4th through 6th respectively.UNC’s Caroline Baldwin (21.82) out-touched Georgia’s Chantal Van Landeghem (21.85) for 7th.
Notable, Stanford’s Lia Neal swam a personal best 21.65 to win the B final.