Every year in the NCAA, there are a handful of “last chance” meets around the country, usually after the conference championships. These meets are used by coaches for last-minute qualifications for NCAA’s when times aren’t earned as expected at those conference meets, or if a coach simply wants to get in a few last swims for certain swimmers.
Often times, swimmers don’t drop any times at these meets. Sometimes, however, those last few days of taper, or a better start, or the lower pressure results in some really impressive times. Here, we’ll highlight some of those times from this weekend.
Most of the last chance meets this weekend were women’s events, specifically in Austin, Texas; Athens, Georgia; and Columbus, Ohio. The Ivies also got a few last good swims in back at Harvard at the ECAC Championships.
Here, we’ll highlight those times that could significantly impact NCAA scoring, NCAA qualifying, or are simply eye-catching results. This was the last day for women’s NCAA qualifying times to be put up, though the men have another week.
Pac-12 Time Trial
- This wasn’t a formal Last Chance meet as far as we could tell, but Liz Pelton swam a Time Trial’ed 100 backstroke in 51.53. That’s a race she didn’t swim at Pac 12’s. She was a few tenths faster at the Georgia Invitational mid-season. She swam the 200 free at Pac-12’s, but we could see her switch back to this 100 at NCAA’s.
Georgia Last Chance Meet
- In the 200 backstroke prelims, Tennessee freshman Maddie Hahn broke the School Record with a 1:54.16. The old record belonged to teammate Kate McNeilis. Hahn was only a 1:55.4 at SEC’s last week. That time moves her to 25th in the country, which should make her an NCAA qualifier.
- Satisfied, Hahn skipped the final of that race. That left Arkansas’ Anna Mayfield, another freshman, to win the 200 back final in 1:54.96, which in itself is a new Arkansas School Record. That time leaves her 42nd in the country.
- Florida’s Natasha Fung was a 49.11 in the 100 free, about four-tenths faster than her previous season best. Texas A&M’s Ellen Quirke hit her NCAA B standard in the same event with a 49.94.
- Georgia freshman Garrett Powell dropped 13 seconds off of his SEC Championship time with a 14:59.36 in the men’s 1650 Free. That’s their 5th swimmer under 15 minutes this year, and all 5 should make NCAA’s. He was also a 4:20 in his 500 free. His teammate Ediz Yildiremer was a 15:04.48, which leaves him 28th in the country with Pac 12’s and more last-chance meets yet to come. That time probably won’t get invited.
- Georgia’s Courtney Peters was a 1:56.74 in the 200 fly on Saturday and a 54.41 in the 100 fly on Sunday. That 200 fly time ranks her 21st in the country, and a “B” standard in the 100 should give her a second entry at NCAA’s (pending any issues with roster limits).
- Georgia’s Megan Romano was a 22.04 in the 50 free (with no real concerns about NCAA qualifying); Allison Schmitt was 22.55 in the same race.
- Kentucky’s Christina Bechtel, just a sophomore, likely sealed her NCAA invite with a 52.62 in the 100 fly. North Carolina freshman Hannah Lincoln put herself squarely on the bubble with a 52.87.
- Georgia’s Lauren Harrington added a B-time in the 200 free (she’ll likely be invited in the 100 fly anyway) for another NCAA event option with a 1:47.16. Texas A&M’s Ellen Quirke was 2nd in 1:47.49.
- Jameson Hill inched closer to qualification in the 200 free with a 1:35.45. That ranks 36th in the country, but this is an event where some of top-30 swimmers won’t actually enter the race.
UGA Last Chance Day 1 results.
UGA Last Chance Day 2 results.
- Harvard swimmer Sara Li led off their 400 free relay with a 48.67 (100 free split time) back in her home pool. That’s half-a-second better than she was at Ivy’s on Friday and Saturday, and pushes her to 19th in the country. That means an individual invite to NCAA’s.
Ohio State Last Chance Invite
- Three great 200 backstrokes at the Ohio State last chance meet. Ohio State’s Emily Creran moved to 18th in the country with a 1:53.62; Wisconsin’s Hannah Ross is 15th with a 1:53.37; and Indiana’s Allie Day moved to 17th with a 1:53.54. (Day’s time didn’t make it into the official database yet).
- Liberty’s Jess Reinhardt in the women’s 100 fly was a 52.87; that ranks her 36th in the country and puts her on the bubble.
- Indiana’s Justine Ress was a 53.07 in the 100 back, which also puts her on the bubble in terms of an individual invite in this event.
University of Texas Last Chance Invite
Full Texas Last Chance Invite results here; not many best times in this one.