Gretchen Walsh Powers Up For UVA Sophomore Year After Successful Summer

2022 U.S. National Championships in Irvine, CA served as a redemption meet for UVA swim star Gretchen Walsh after she missed making the U.S. World Champs Team at the 2022 International Team Trials.  Team Trials, if we’re being honest, wasn’t an ideal competition coming so close on the heels of the 2022 NCAA DI Championships.  At U.S. Nationals Walsh proved she’s a star to contend with earning the women’s high point for the meet.

In Irvine, Walsh notched a win in the 100 fly, missing her PB by .01 with a 57.44. She earned silver in the 50 free (24.47) and 100 free (53.86), and touched 5th in the 100 back (1:00.03).   Interestingly, noting her mental strategy, Walsh’s coach Todd DeSorbo had her wear a practice suit in the prelims of the 100 free–not allowing her to race in a tech suit until she hit a predetermined time. She raced in a tech suit for the 100 free final and throughout the remainder of the meet.

UVA FRESHMAN REFRESH

At her first NCAA Championships, Walsh placed 2nd in the 50 free (20.95, #3 performer All-Time), 2nd in the 100 back (49.00, #2 performer All-Time), and won her first individual NCAA title in the 100 free at 46.05 (#4 performer All-Time). She also helped UVA to title in the 200 free, 400 free, 200 medley, and 400 medley relays, breaking NCAA, U.S. Open, and American records in the 400 medley and free relays.

While it’s too early in the season to make Walsh predictions (though we welcome them), her first NCAA Champs was a big breakout moment. I think we can expect the same from her in long course next summer, though I’m not entirely sure what that will look like. What do you think?

See Gretchen Walsh on the cover of the 2022 College Preview SwimSwam Magazine.

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This is a Gold Medal Media production presented by SwimOutlet.com. Host Gold Medal Mel Stewart is a 3-time Olympic medalist and the co-founder of SwimSwam.com, a Swimming News website.

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reyhan
9 days ago

keren banget mantap 

Chris
26 days ago

now do a thing about her seester who is about a second from the WR.

Chris
26 days ago

If she can so much as improve just a miniscule amount, she’s a shoe in for the relay, at a minimum at trials.

Chris
26 days ago

Do they have long course days during the NCAA season at this level?

Admin
Reply to  Chris
26 days ago

Yep. At UVa they even do long course time trials every few weeks.

Scott Bonney
27 days ago

Gretchen is the best, and I hope she and the other UVa women school-up a certain Stanford freshman swimmer at NCAAs.

RMS
Reply to  Scott Bonney
27 days ago

Classy

Beginner Swimmer at 25
Reply to  RMS
27 days ago

Who is her talking about? Curzan?

RMS
Reply to  Beginner Swimmer at 25
27 days ago

Yes

Snarky
Reply to  Scott Bonney
27 days ago

Such a loser comment.

Iambic Pentameter
Reply to  Snarky
26 days ago

Seriously? Why the hate? They are both fantastic.

Awsi Dooger
27 days ago

She is embracing college and thriving in it. That’s what I’m impressed with.

Popcorn Boy
27 days ago

OMG she is so cute!

Go Kamminga Go
Reply to  Popcorn Boy
27 days ago

BONK!

Honest Observer
27 days ago

Have a strong feeling she’s going to be ready to do what it takes by Olympic Trials ’24.

Snarky
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel Stewart
27 days ago

I’d say 50 and 100 free are her best bets. Back and fly are super crowded at the top and G seems to have a better LCM free compared to her fly and back. She’s a stud for sure.

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Snarky
26 days ago

That depends if Gretchen Walsh continues momentum next year in the 50 meter pool from the 2022 Phillips 66 National Championships.

Taa
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel Stewart
26 days ago

Halfway through last season she really showed nothing and then bam she exploded after the 1st of the year. I predict all 1st or 2nd place finishes individually and same relay wins next year with some real small fractional improvements in her times since she is already on top of her game. The real question is what is she capable of in LCM. Remains to be seen.

Joel Lin
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel Stewart
27 days ago

She’s a likely Olympian in the 4×100 free relay. Hard to see six hands get to the wall ahead of hers at Trials. The 50 is all about getting her full potential out. A good start, a good breakout & she’s in he fight.

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Joel Lin
26 days ago

How much upside in the women’s 100 meter freestyle remains to be seen.

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Joel Lin
25 days ago

That also depends if Manuel and Weitzeil rebound.

Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel Stewart
26 days ago

The domestic competition in the women’s 100 meter backstroke is brutal:

Smith, Regan
Curzan, Claire
Berkoff, Katharine
White, Rhyan

leave dressel and titmus alone
Reply to  Weinstein-Smith-Ledecky-Sims
26 days ago

and even after those 4 there are Phoebe Bacon and Olivia Smoliga who can throw down solid times

Chris
Reply to  leave dressel and titmus alone
26 days ago

Bacon, yes. Smoliga, I dont know about in 2 years.

About Gold Medal Mel Stewart

Gold Medal Mel Stewart

MEL STEWART Jr., aka Gold Medal Mel, won three Olympic medals at the 1992 Olympic Games. Mel's best event was the 200 butterfly. He is a former World, American, and NCAA Record holder in the 200 butterfly. As a writer/producer and sports columnist, Mel has contributed to Yahoo Sports, Universal Sports, …

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