Kate Douglass Chooses 200 IM over 50 Free on Day 2 of ACC Swimming Champs


Virginia star freshman Kate Douglass will swim the 200 IM instead of the 50 free on day 2 of the 2020 ACC Women’s Swimming & Diving Championships on Thursday morning.

Douglass was entered into 7 individual events in the pre-meet psych sheets, of which she has to scratch down to just 3 throughout the meet. In terms of scoring, her day 3 (100 fly) and day 4 (200 breast) choices stand out a little more, but day 2 was the biggest coin toss: she’s the top seed in the 200 IM by 2-and-a-half seconds ahead of defending champion Julia Poole from NC State, while in the 50 free she’s the top seed by 3-tenths ahead of teammate Morgan Hill.

Ultimately, the choice of 200 IM, looking pragmatically at scoring, is probably the right one. If Douglass is able to block Poole from winning that 200 IM and keep her from those 4 bonus points, it winds up being better on net than just keeping her own teammate Hill from winning the 50 free. Of course, Hill’s win in the 50 free is no assurance – after Alyssa Marsh split 22.0 on Duke’s 200 medley relay, she’s in contention. NC State’s Ky-lee Perry, who was .01 seconds behind Hill for last year’s ACC title, split 21.48 on a 200 medley relay anchor, about two-tenths slower than Hill was. Also lurking in that race is Louisville’s Casey Fanz, who had the fastest 200 medley anchor on Wednesday in 21.15.

So, in sum, while nothing is a given, the 200 IM was the cleanest choice for Douglass. She should win that race, grab her 32 points, and move on to the 200 free relay, where Virginia has a shot at the ACC Record on Thursday evening.

That was the biggest choice to be made, though there were a few more important choices made in Thursday’s prelims action:

  • NC State is going after big points in the 500 free, where they have 4 seeded in the top 9, and then Virginia should surge back in the 200 IM. To that end, 3 possible top-16 scorers for NC State in the 200 IM have chosen other events: Kylee Alons has dropped the 200 IM (#9) for the 50 free (#8); Katharine Berkoff has dropped the 200 IM (#13) for the 500 free (#8), and Kathleen Moore has dropped the 200 IM (#14) for the 500 free (#2).
  • The one counter-move into the 200 IM for the Wolfpack comes from NC State freshman Heather Maccausland, who dropped the 50 free (#14 seed) for the 200 IM (#17 seed).
  • Arina Openysheva of Louisville has dropped the 500 free (#14) for the 50 free (#17)

Team Scores After Day 1:


  1. UVA – 166
  2. Notre Dame – 165
  3. UNC – 135
  4. Louisville – 133
  5. Duke – 130
  6. NC State – 125
  7. FSU – 122
  8. Virginia Tech – 113
  9. Georgia Tech – 109
  10. Miami – 105
  11. Boston College – 70
  12. Pitt – 59


  1. Miami/UNC – 55
  2. (tie)
  3. FSU/NC State – 45
  4. Virginia – 42
  5. Duke – 32
  6. Virginia Tech – 31
  7. Louisville – 27
  8. Notre Dame – 15
  9. Pitt – 11
  10. Georgia Tech – 4

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4 years ago

Makes sense for the team as Morgan Hill has a shot to win the 50 for UVA without Douglass. This could be like Dressel — I wouldn’t be shocked if Douglass moved back to the 50 for NCAAs for “load management”

Lost in the Sauce
Reply to  swimgeek
4 years ago

I think due to Hill and Douglass not being tapered, they’ll go for ‘best events’ at NCAA’s rather than points, especially because at NCAA’s their best events will probably equal most points.

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Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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