Max McHugh Cuts Up a New Nation-Leading 100 Breast: 50.55


  • February 6, 2021
  • Minneapolis, MN
  • Short course yards (SCY)
  • Results


  • Scores
    • Minnesota 153, Iowa 147
  • Notable absences
    • Minnesota: Antonio Octaviano, Cale Berkoff, Tim Sates

Max McHugh was next-level today, as he won the 100 breast with a new season-best and NCAA-leading time of 50.55.

McHugh’s old season-best was a 50.63 from January. He also won the 200 breast today in 1:53.17, which moves him from #6 to #5 nationally. On the 200 medley relay, he threw down another 22-second breast leg, splitting a 22.73, and he was 20.49 leading off their 200 free relay.

Freshmen showed up big for Minnesota, with Sawyer Grimes winning the 1000 free (9:06.74). Then, Kaiser Neverman and William Christenson went 1-2 in the 200 fly, with respective times of 1:47.12 and 1:49.32. Neverman added a runner-up touch in the 100 fly, going 48.02 behind Iowa’s Sergey Kuznetsov (47.43).

Iowa claimed big wins in the relays, though. The Hawkeyes were 1:26.66 in the 200 medley relay ahead of Minnesota (1:27.00), and they were 1:20.00 to Minnesota’s 1:20.32.

For Iowa, Aleksey Tarasenko swept the sprints, going 19.97 to edge Minnesota first-year Lucas Farrar (20.13) in the 50 and then 43.69 for the 100 free win. Anze Ferz Erzen finished first in both backstroke races, going 47.93 in the 100 and 1:44.35 in the 200 back, as Grimes touched second (1:45.97) for Minnesota.

Mateusz Arndt bagged the mid-distance double, going 1:36.60 in the 200 free and 4:21.10 in the 500 free. In the final individual event, Erzen returned, claiming the 200 IM with a 1:46.80.

Minnesota claimed the meet win by a hair, though, with the final score in their favor by just six points.


  • Scores
    • Minnesota 193, Nebraska 107
    • Minnesota 192, Iowa 107
  • Notable absences
    • Minnesota: Grace Bennin, Abbey Kilgallon, Joy Zhu

On the women’s side, Minnesota cruised to the win, leaning on a backstroke sweep from Emily Cook & freshman Indy Jongman and a breaststroke sweep from Emma Lezer. Cook went under 54 for the first time this season to win the 100 back in 53.66, cracking the national top 50 rankings, while Jongman put up a 1:57.92 to lead the 200 back. It was Jongman’s first SCY 200 back officially.

Lezer, meanwhile, was 1:01.43 in the 100 and then 2:16.90 in the 200. Cook and Lezer led off Minnesota’s 200 medley relay, which won by almost three seconds at 1:39.53, as Cook was 24.75 and Lezer 27.97. Jongman anchored in 22.56 with a 24.25 fly leg from Emma Linscott.

In the 400 IM, Minnesota freshman Megan Van Berkom led a big 1-2-3 for the Gophers, going 4:14.63 to edge sophomore teammate Rachel Butler (4:14.72). For Butler, that’s a lifetime best by a couple of tenths.

Autumn Haebig was a standout performer for Nebraska, first winning the 200 free by over a second with a 1:46.69, then returning to break 50 seconds in the 100 free (49.74). Not finished yet, she was back in the 500 free, completing a mid-distance free triple with a 4:48.82 to win by over two seconds.

Alyssa Graves and Mallory Jump turned in a win apiece for the Hawkeye women. Graves was 9:50.78 in the 1000, while Jump won the 100 fly in 53.05, a lifetime best by a quarter-second. That swim for Jump undercuts her 2020 Big Ten Champs performance of 53.31, when she was at Purdue (she transferred in 2020).


  • Minnesota’s women went 1-2-3 in the 50 free, with Maggie Summit on top (23.08).
  • Minnesota freshman Megan Van Berkom edged out Iowa senior Kelsey Drake in the 200 fly, 1:59.38 to 1:59.69.
  • The Gophers won the 200 free relay in 1:31.79, a second ahead of second-place Nebraska (1:32.97).
  • Sarah Bacon of Minnesota swept the springboards, scoring 352.30 in the 1-meter and 370.20 in the 3-meter. On the men’s side, Gopher Jake Butler swept, too, going 412.50 in the 1-meter and 379.55 in the 3-meter.

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3 months ago

Dude is gonna go 49.

Reply to  monsterbasher
3 months ago

Also wanted to say this guy is an absolute unit.

Reply to  monsterbasher
3 months ago

A G-Unit? #9Times

Reply to  612
3 months ago

G-g-g-g-g Unit!

Reply to  monsterbasher
3 months ago

48.9 Finals at NC’s you heard it here first!

Reply to  monsterbasher
3 months ago

I do think he’s gonna go 49 but idk if he’ll break the record just yet and if he does think it’s going to be very close like around the 49.50 area

Reply to  PFA
3 months ago

And he won’t be the only one going sub 50…

Reply to  Stewie
3 months ago


Daniel Jablonski
3 months ago

Glad to see him back in action!

Mean Dean
3 months ago

Insane that he recovered so well so quickly. Rooting for him

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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