Katrina Konopka Breaks 50 Free YMCA National Record On Day 4 of Y Nats


Katrina Konopka broke Missy Franklin‘s Junior Nationals meet record in the 50 free last weekend– but she finished 2nd in the race. Marta Ciesla touched just ahead for the title and the new record. Tonight, however, Konopka was the one edging out a competitor for a new record, as her swim of 25.70 broke the Y-Nats record of 25.74 set in 2009 by Emily Lloyd. She touched out NC State commit Ky-lee Perry for the title. Perry was 2nd in 25.77, nearly under the old record herself, while the two were the only competitors to break 26 seconds. Zach Apple won the men’s race by over six tenths in 23.04, securing an Olympic Trials cut.

Konopka swims for Middle Tyger YMCA, or Y-Spartaquatics, and their women’s team has been on a roll this meet. At the end of the session, they took home the 800 free relay title with a time of 8:22.54, winning by over four seconds. They have won three out of the four relays contested thus far in the meet. On the men’s side, it was Wilton who won in 7:43.17, upending Cheshire, the latter of which won both medley relays earlier in the meet.

In the 400 free, it was Abbey Erwin (Downtown Boise) and Hank Siefert (Coffman) who won, with respective times of 4:19.63 and 3:58.37. Erwin was the only competitor to break 4:20, while Siefert took down Grant House‘s old Y Nats record of 3:58.69 which was set in 2014. York’s Zach Snyder was close behind in 3:58.93. Both Erwin and Siefert actually won the women’s and men’s 200 frees, respectively, and showcased their range by taking home another national title in a longer distance.

Only one swimmer dipped below 28 seconds in the women’s 50 fly, and that was Bath Area Y’s Caitlin Tycz, whose 27.82 pushed her past Fanwood-Scotch Plains’ Monica Burzinski (28.07). Tycz is just 15 years old while Burzinski is only 14, and it looks as though these two will have plenty more battles at this meet in years to come.

The men’s 50 fly was incredibly close, with the top 7 finishers all finishing between 25.55 and 25.95. Winning the title was Somerset Valley’s Joseph Delbuono in 25.58, followed closely by Birmingham’s Alexander Margherio (25.64) and Countryside Ralph Stolle’s Jacob Peloquin (25.76).

Cha O’Leary won a hotly-contested 100 breaststroke, as 50 breast winner Alyssa Arwood was out the fastest of the field in 33.74. Arwood faded to third in 1:13.48, while O’Leary surged back to win it in 1:12.65. 13-year-old Heather McCausland had the fastest back-half of anyone with a 37.36 to come back for 2nd in 1:12.98. Jacob Limaldi (Red Bank) was the only male swimmer to go under 1:05, and he won that race with a 1:04.48 over 400 IM champion Mark Andrew (1:05.24).

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About Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon studied sociology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, graduating in May of 2018. He began swimming on a club team in first grade and swam four years for Wesleyan.

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