Michael Brinegar, Clare Vetkoetter Win Opening Races at College Station Sects.

2020 College Station Sectionals

  • February 27th-March 1st, 2020
  • Texas A&M University Rec Center, College Station, Texas
  • SCY Prelims/LCM Finals
  • Results on Meet Mobile: “2020 Speedo Sectionals Championship Series” (or search “College Station”)

Like many meets in the Olympic year, the spring edition of the 2020 College Station Sectionals, normally a yards meet, will include short course yards preliminary races and long course meters finals races. This gives swimmers a chance to both test their short course tapers and chase Olympic Trials cuts in long course in the evening session.

Most of the top seeds from Texas teams at this meet are coming off the Texas High School State Championship meets that wrapped 2 weeks ago. They will be joined by visiting teams from around the country, including most notably Loveland Swim Club in Colorado, the Mission Vid\ejo Nadadores, PASA, Clovis, and AquaDart swimming in California, and Crawfish Aquatics in Louisiana.

Friday’s finals session saw timed finals of the long course women’s 1500 free, men’s 800 free, and men’s and women’s 800 free relays. The individual distance races are new events at this year’s Olympic Games (and by extension Olympic Trials).

Women’s Meet

The Texans held serve in the opening race of the women’s meet, with 16-year old Clare Vetkoetter from Texas Ford Aquatics winning the 1500 free in a new best time of 16:58.85. Her 6 second drop in that race left her short of the Olympic Trials standard.

Blue Tide’s Madison Grafmiller finished 2nd in 17:18.02 (dropping more than 7 seconds) and Loveland’s Milla Ruthven was 3rd in 17:20.14.

In the only other women’s race of the night, the Lakeside Aquatic Club won the women’s 800 free relay in 8:25.87.

Top 5 Team Scores:

  1. Mission Viejo Nadadores – 47
  2. Rockwall Aquatic Center of Excellence – 44
  3. Lakeside Aquatic Club – 40
  4. Blue Tide Aquatics – 39
  5. Nitro Swimming – 34

Men’s Meet

The Mission Viejo Nadadores have one of the best distance freestyle training groups in the country, and they demonstrated that on Thursday in College Station via a 1-2 finish from Michael Brinegar (8:03.34) and David Heron (8:07.11). Both members of the US National Team, Brinegar is currently on a redshirt season from Indiana to train for the Olympics while the 24-year old Heron is pivoting as a pro from open water, where he raced at the World Championships but missed Olympic qualification, to the pool.

That swim for Heron is within a second-and-a-half of his lifetime best.

The top junior finisher was 15-year old Levi Sandidge from City of Richardson in suburban Dallas. He placed 3rd overall in 8:21.08, improving his best time by almost 12 seconds.

Katy Aquatics won the men’s 800 free relay in 7:37.57 with a relay of four high school-aged swimmers. Their splits:

  • Tyler Kopp – 1:53.02
  • Seung Joon Ahn – 1:53.81
  • Jackson Dement – 1:55.21
  • James Gavin – 1:55.53

Austin-based Longhorn Aquatics finished 2nd in 7:38.77. That included a 1:49.90 leadoff split from Coby Carrozza – just 3-tenths away from his personal best done at Summer Nationals in August.

Top 5 Team Scores:

  1. Mission Viejo Nadadores – 105
  2. KATY Aquatics – 59
  3. Clovis Swim Club – 46
  4. Longhorn Aquatics – 34
  5. Metroplex Aquatics – 28

In This Story

Leave a Reply

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

Read More »

Want to take your swimfandom to the next level?

Subscribe to SwimSwam Magazine!