Kate Douglass to Swim 200 IM, 100 Fly, and 200 Breast at Her First NCAA Champs

by Robert Gibbs 17

March 03rd, 2020 ACC, College, News

University of Virginia freshman Kate Douglass has been making headlines all season for her top-notch performances across a variety of events. Coming out of high school, it was clear that Douglass, the #1 recruit in the girls high school class of 2019, would be able to swim a number of events at a very high level, and she’s demonstrated that over the course of the season.

Heading into NCAAs, here’s where she was ranked across the nation:

  • 50 free (21.53) – 5th
  • 100 free (47.77) – 10th
  • 200 breast (2:05.89) – 3rd
  • 100 fly (50.30) – 4th
  • 200 IM (1:51.36) – 1st

With the women’s NCAA pre-selection sheets out, we now know that Douglass is slated to reprise her event schedule from the ACC Championships, and will swim the 200 IM, 100 fly, and 200 breast at NCAAs in a few weeks. That’s a fairly unorthodox event schedule — it’s pretty rare to see swimmer who are among the top in the nation in both the 100 fly and the 200 breast — but it makes sense as those are three events in which she’s ranked highest.

Douglass won the 200 IM and the 100 fly at ACCs, and she finished 3rd in the 200 breast behind the only two women ranked ahead of her on the psych sheet: NC State’s Sophie Hansson and fellow Cavalier freshman Ella Nelson. With Lilly King out of the picture, the race for the 200 breast title will be wide open, and those three women should be in the mix.

In the 200 IM, Douglass is seeded 0.3s ahead of last year’s champion, Beata Nelson of Wisconsin. The 100 fly may be Douglass’s toughest race, as the three women ahead of her are the three fastest women in the history of the race: Michigan’s Maggie MacNeil and USC’s Louise Hansson, who jointly hold the US Open Record at 49.26, and Tennessee’s Erika Brown, who set the American Record at the SEC Championships with a 49.38.

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Konner Scott

Crazy for someone who was arguably a freestyle sprinter out of high school. Insane versatility!

Packit up

Not to disprove, rather support your point on versatility, here are Kate’s best times out of HS

50fr – 21.67
100fr – 47.98
200fr – 1:45.16
100fl – 51.74 – 58.48 LCM!
100br – 1:00.26 (2017) – 1:08.51 LCM!
200br – 2:10.59 (2016) – 2:28.00 LCM!
100bk – 53.05
200im – 1:56.09 (2018) – 2:12.11 LCM!

I would argue she is a world class IMer based off that…


Thank you for the steady influx of articles headlining KD! I look forward to many more throughout the last month of the NCAA season! Is SwimSwam an official sponsor of Kate Douglass? I hope you find writers to cover the other non-sponsored top notch swimmers as well! For example, maybe last year’s NCAA Swimmer of the Meet ?!

Motivated – did you have any questions about what last year’s Swimmer of the Meet would swim this year? Our coverage isn’t about picking favorites, it’s about covering the swimmers whose event choices are particularly newsworthy.


I would argue she is due an article solely due to the fact she is the reigning Swimmer of the Meet. That must be worth something, right?

Adam Peaty is the one of the best swimmers on the planet. Would you consider it newsworthy that he enters the 100 breast at British Olympic Trials?

Beata is going to be a big part of our NCAA preview coverage. Today, we’re specifically focusing on newsworthy event choices. If Beata Nelson had given up any of the three races she won last year, that would be hugely newsworthy. Entering the same three events she swam last year is pretty widely expected. We’re not in any way, shape, or form trying to count down the top overall swimmers in the NCAA. We’re covering the news. The only offense to be found is where someone is dead set on being offended.


no worries Jared. thanks for the coverage.


Yeah, I don’t think an article called “Beata Nelson Set to Swim Expected Event Lineup at NCAAs” would be particularly interesting or helpful. xD

I can see the article now: “Beata Nelson swimming same events as last year. OR WILL SHE?! …She will.”

And then comments angry at us for clickbait 😆

Joel Lin



You all literally posted an article stating “Louise Hansson to swim same events as last year” just looking for consistency

That was to note the possibility of her scratching the 200 IM in favor of swimming 5 relays, which she did in 2018. (Or the fact that she’s entered in the event at all. It was a possibility that she wouldn’t. She’s a big relay game changer for USC)


eh i don’t think that’s noteworthy. Louisse is still entered in her expected events.
but thanks for the quick response.

Well it’s okay to agree to disagree on that one I guess. Some people may find it interesting. In any case, we’ll have to wait and see if she swims it at NCAAs. Her individual points might not be worth losing if it won’t bump their 200 free relay up enough.


I would think she swims it – A final at a minimum, too many points to pass up!

She did almost break Hosszu’s Pac-12 meet record last year too. Seems like she could place top 3 at least, especially since she seemed to be considerably less rested for Pac-12s this time and is probably fully focused on NCAAs.