Kitajima Tops 200 Breast to Highlight Day 3 Finals at L.A. Invite

Friday night finals saw U.S. National Team members and world class international talent face off after setting the stage in prelims. 200 back victor Ryan Murphy took a shot at the 200 free. Olympic Gold Medalist Kosuke Kitajima made his first finals appearance of the meet in the 200 breast. In the 50 free Vlad Morozov and Nikita Lobinstev matched up again, while Margo Geer took on Cal’s Farida Osman.

There were a few notable scratches after prelims. Team USA’s Nathan Adrian and Matt Grevers scratched the 50 free, and Brendan McHugh scratched the 200 breast. Trojan Swim Club’s Rami Dvariskyte scratched out of the women’s 200 breast. Day 3 finals highlights:


Men’s 1500 Free

It was rumored before finals that top seed Jordan Wilimovsky of Team Santa Monica had changed up his stroke, and would be working with his new technique in finals. From the deck, he appeared to be using longer strokes. He took 19-20 strokes per 50 on the way to a final time of 15:06.96, ranking him 23rd in the world this year.

Arizona junior Ty Fowler picked up another 2nd place finish in the distance event, clocking in at 15:37.06. That’s a lifetime best by over 8 seconds.

15 year old Michael Brinegar put up an impressive swim for 3rd. The young distance swimmer had already qualified for the 2016 Olympic Trials. Tonight, he earned a lifetime best, dropping about 2.5 seconds to swim a 15:40.87.

Arizona’s Chris Wieser officially qualified for the 2016 Olympic Trials for the first time. He’s been faster than his 15:48.08 before, but this was the first time he’s been under the cut in the official qualifying period. That swim earned him 5th in the final behind William Brothers, who dropped his time from prelims to a 15:44.17.

Top 3: 1. Jordan Wilimovsky 15:06.96 2. Ty Fowler 15:37.06 3. Michael Brinegar 15:40.87

 Women’s 200 I.M.

It was a close race in the 200 I.M. at the halfway mark between Ella Eastin and Sonia Wang. On the breaststroke leg, Eastin surged ahead, and was able to hold on for the win with a fast in-season time of 2:14.24. That’s just over a second off of her personal best 2:13.12 from 2014 Jr Pan Pacs. Wang finished 2nd in 2:14.90.

3rd-5th were separated by less than 4 tenths, with Cal’s Kelly Naze leading the way. Ally Howe tried to race ahead at the finish, splitting a 31.66 to Naze’s 32.10, but it was the Golden Bear who claimed 3rd in 2:16.59.

Howe finished 4th in 2:16.71. Kim Williams, who will join Howe at Stanford with Eastin in the fall, finished just behind for 5th in 2:16.91.

Top 3: 1. Ella Eastin 2:14.24 2.Sonia Wang 2:14.90 3. Kelly Naze 2:16.59

Men’s 200 Free

The men’s 200 free was a 3 man race between Ryan Murphy, Nikita Lobintsev, and Alexander Sukhorukov. All 3 men broke the 1:50 barrier in finals.

Lobintsev and Murphy tore through the first half at 53.53 and 53.89. But it was Lobintsev who was able to hold on for the win. He finished with a time of 1:49.07.

Sukhorukov stuck to his race strategy, overtaking Murphy for 2nd in 1:49.47. He nearly even split his race, going out in 54.51 and finishing in 54.96. Murphy fell off pace a bit in the 3rd 50 with a 28.37, but he came home strong enough to take 3rd in 1:49.96. That was his first time under 1:50.

Murphy’s teammates Trent Williams and Ryan Kao were 4th and 5th behind him. Williams kept his 4th place seed with a 1:51.63. Kao was locked in a tight race with Arizona’s Parks Jones for 5th. On the final 50, Kao surged past Jones to finish about a tenth ahead, 1:52.22 to 1:52.33

Top 3: 1. Nikita Lobintsev 1:49.07 2. Alexander Sukhorukov 1:49.47 3. Ryan Murphy 1:49.96

Women’s 200 Breast

Arizona’s Emma Schoettmer dominated the women’s 200 breast, recording the only sub 2:30 time of the meet. Her 2:28.23 was the fastest she’s been since 2012, and within a second of her personal best 2:27.49.

Stanford’s Sarah Haase and incoming UCLA freshman Emma Schanz came as close to a tie as they could possibly get. The Cardinal had the better finish, as the two closed in 39.75 and 40.44. Haase slid just ahead of Shanz, 2:32.15 to 2:32.16.

Ella Eastin swam this event right after the 200 I.M. Her time of 2:32.65 was good for 4th over Marin Pirates’ Riley Scott. Scott was 5th in 2:32.91.

Top 3: 1. Emma Schoettmer 2:28.23 2. Sarah Haase 2:32.15 3. Emma Schanz 2:32.16


Men’s 200 Breast

Japanese Olympic Champion Kosuke Kitajima was a force in the men’s 200 breast. He came out on top of a field of talented American breaststrokers. His 2:11.05 was nearly 2 seconds ahead of the top seed Steven Stumph.

Stumph knocked half a second off his prelims time, swimming to a 2:12.99. That time was good enough to take 2nd behind Kitajima.

The race for 3rd came down to the wire between Chuck Katis and Sam Tierney. Tierney just finished his eligibility at Missouri and has been training at USC for the summer. He’ll return to Mizzou in the fall to join the post grad group.

Katis took it out in 1:04.04 to Tierney’s 1:05.29, but Tierney closed the gap on the last 100. His 34.47 in the final 50 was 1.4 seconds faster than Katis, who closed in 35.87. Katis fell to 4th by just .04, as they finished in 2:14.72 and 2:14.76.

Top 3: 1. Kosuke Kitajima 2:11.05 2. Steven Stumph 2:12.99 3. Sam Tierney 2:14.72

Women’s 50 Free

Margo Geer and Farida Osman set the pace as the top 2 in prelims of the 50 free. They finished in 1st and 2nd in the final as well, separated by just over 2 tenths.

In the final, Osman got her hand on the wall first. She swam the fastest time of the day in 25.12. Geer was slightly off her prelims time of 25.17, finishing 2nd in a solid 25.34.

Rounding out the top 3 was Trojan Swim Club’s Melissa Gates. She cracked 26 in finals to clock a 25.77.

Stanford’s Julia Ama was the next fastest swimmer, placing 4th with a time of 26.18. Behind Ama, Anika Apostalon earned a 5th place finish with a 26.27. The Trojan Swim Club sprinter is just getting started at USC after transferring from SDSU. She was just .01 ahead of Grace Carlson, who also represented Stanford in the final with a 26.28.

Top 3: 1. Farida Osman 25.12 2. Margo Geer 25.34 3. Melissa Gates 25.77


Men’s 50 Free

After winning the 200 free, Nikita Lobintsev went up against fellow Russian sprinter Vlad Morozov in the 50 free. After American Olympian Nathan Adrian scratched the event, those two took the middle of the pool, tied for the top seed.

Morozov flew ahead to finish 1st in 22.14, just off Adrian’s 22.09 from prelims. Lobintsev landed his 2nd top 2 finish of the night with a 22.47.

Shayne Fleming of De Anza Cupertino Aquatics raced to the wall to finish 3rd. He clipped .03 off his prelims time, touching the wall at 22.91.

Tucson Ford’s Masa Kishida, who trains with Arizona’s post grad group, was 4th in 23.19. He touched the wall closely ahead of Marcus Schlesinger‘s 23.23.

Top 3: 1. Vlad Morozov 22.12 2. Nikita Lobintsev 22.47 3. Shayne Fleming 22.91

Women’s 400 Free

As the buzzer went off for the women’s 400 free, Maddie Meisel quickly took control through the first 200 in 2:05.81. Meisel was 2 seconds ahead of Blue Fins Swim Team’s Riley Spitser through the halfway mark.

Spitser shifted gears in the 2nd half, making a statement on the final 100. She swam ahead with a final split of 1:03.90 to Meisel’s 1:06.05, finishing in a final time of 4:16.63 for the win. With that, she qualified for the 2016 Olympic Trials. Meisel held 2nd place to finish in 4:17.84.

Brittany Kampfer closely trailed Michaela Merlihan through the first 300 in the race for 3rd. Much like she did in the 800 free yesterday, Kampfer picked up the pace significantly on the 4th 100. She closed in 1:03.65 to out swim Merlihan, 4:19.04 to 4:19.35.

Alexandra Wooden locked in a battle with Arizona’s Bonnie Brandon for 5th. Wooden trailed by just half a second at the 200, before Brandon took off on the 3rd 100 to stretch her lead. The Wildcat senior finished in 4:22.05 to Wooden’s 4:23.25.

Top 3: 1. Riley Spitser 4:16.63 2. Maddie Meisel 4:17.84 3. Brittany Kampfer 4:19.04

Men’s 400 I.M.

In the men’s 400 I.M., Adam Hinshaw was at the wall first through the fly and back. Corey Okubo hung on through the first 200 meters, passing Hinshaw on the breast leg and hitting the 300 mark in 1st to put himself in position for the win. He swam a 1:16.68 to Hinshaw’s 1:18.23.

Hinshaw is a great freestyler, and he took advantage of that over the final 100 meters. He roared back to win in 4:24.80.

Okubo held on for 2nd in 4:25.50. Iegor Lytvenok made a late charge, tearing through the water with the fastest free split of 59.32. He fell short of Okubo, but clenched 3rd in 4:25.90.

Wade Nelson also broke 4:30 to take 4th in 4:29.90. Behind him, Curtis Ogren and Keltan Lawler raced for 5th. Lawler had the faster breaststroke split, 1:16.92 to 1:18.02. He closed fast enough to hold off Ogren with a time of 4:30.46. Ogren was 6th in 4:30.94.

Top 3: 1. Adam Hinshaw 4:24.80 2. Corey Okubo 4:25.50 3. Iegor Lytvenok 4:25.90

Women’s 800 Free Relay

Golden West Swim Club claimed the top 2 spots in the women’s 4×200 free relay. It was the B team that came up ahead of their A team, 8:41.62 to 8:42.54. Maddie Meisel lead off the A quartet for the lead in 2:06.78. Samantha Le had the fastest split for the B squad with a 2:08.92 on the 3rd leg, pushing them ahead to hold on for the win.

Top 3: 1.Golden West B 8:41.62 2. Golden West A 8:42.54 3. Arizona Aquatic Club A 8:54.46.


Men’s 800 Free Relay

In the mens 4×200, Golden West’s A and B teams were the top 2 as well. They were also the only teams under 8:00, in 7:55.86 and 7:59.51 respectively.

The winning squad had 3 splits under 2:00. Calvin Rogers lead off in 1:58.32, followed by Chadd Maurer in 1:59.67. Ambert Sawaya anchored the A team with a 1:56.22.

Golden West B team’s Jonny Bramm and Peter Crocker were also under 2 minutes. Bramm posted a flat start 1:59.44 and Crocker closed the race in 1:57.13.

Top 3: 1. Golden West A 7:55.86 2. Golden West B 7:59.51 3. Neptune Swimming A 8:20.95

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Irish Ringer

A swift time from Kosuke showing he still has some good swims in him.

bobo gigi

Thanks Lauren for the top 3 results. Good addition. Even if it would be better with bigger letters and in bold type. But I stop bothering you! If not, you’re gonna start to think that French people are really annoying. 😆

And this time I didn’t notice any typo. 😉


Just stop yourself man

About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona and the University of Florida. While her college swimming career left a bit to be desired, her Snapchat chin selfies and hot takes on Twitter do not disappoint. She is now coaching for Loggerhead Aquatics in her hometown …

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