Federal Way, Washington Sectional
On the third night of the Federal Way stop of the 2012 Speedo Sectional Series, Missy Franklin continued to swim extremely fast in her 100 meter events as juxtaposed to the 200’s where she hasn’t been quite as on top of her game. She won the 100 backstroke in 1:00.02. That’s a phenomenal swim, and though it’s a tenth slower than she was in Austin, it’s the fourth-best swim by anybody in the world this season. As compared to what Natalie Coughlin did in Ohio State (1:00.80) when both are largely unprepared for fast swimming, it demonstrates the difference of youth at in-season meets like this.
Franklin would tack on back-to-back wins (and records) by winning the 400 free in 4:13.74. That’s matches exactly her lifetime best (set a year ago in Indy). She and Bonnie Brandon were neck-and-neck through 200 yards, but then Franklin really took control of the race on the back-half, while Brandon finished 2nd in 4:18.22. This would be a really fun race to see Franklin swim on a taper, though we won’t get that chance until at least after the Olympics.
A bit of an odd entry in the 400 free was Franklin’s training partner Kara Lynn Joyce, who is a big-time speed specialist. She hasn’t swum this race in 6 years, and at that only a handful of times in her career, but she did place 4th in 4:22.27. Joyce didn’t swim the 200 on Friday, which would have seemed an apt training swim as well.
Megan Jendrick won a second breaststroke event in her hometown pool with a 1:10.74 in the 100. That was just a hair ahead of Carolyn McCann, who was 2nd in 1:10.86. Don’t overlook that swim by the 16-year old out of the Tacoma Swim Club. It’s a nearly four-second personal best, and gives her a first Olympic Trials Qualifying Time. The Tacoma Swim Club has now put a swimmer in every Olympic Trials since 1964.
On the men’s side of the meet, Cal commit Jacob Pebley won the 100 in 56.18.
Christopher Webb out of the Westside YMCA in Arizona took the men’s 400 free in 3:58.02. After a double on Friday, that brings his championship total to three events in three days of this meet so far. Ian Wheeler took 2nd in 3:58.78.
Phoenix Swim Club’s Roland Schoeman, who had a great 50 fly relay split and has been swimming well throughout, won this 100 fly in 53.18. This is another big confidence-booster for him, as that’s the 2nd-best time of his career (and he hasn’t been that fast since 2005). This won’t be a race he’ll attempt for London, but confidence is confidence.
Greensboro, North Carolina Sectional
SwimMAC’s Davis Tarwater snuck under two minutes and took a win in the 200 fly in 1:59.68 at the Greensboro edition of the Speedo Championship Series. In that same race, North Carolina freshman Dominick Glavich, who was one of the first swimmers out of this year’s NCAA Championship meet, took 2nd in 2:01.48. He’s on the track back to his lofty ratings early in his high school career, as this is his best swim in the event since 2010.
Madison Kennedy, who is making her debut for SwimMAC in this meet, won the women’s 50 free in 25.29. That’s a positive mark for her, the third-best by an American this year, and seems to show that she’s in the least no-worse-for-ware after moving from Cal to the East Coast. It’s certainly much faster than she was at this same meet last season (four-tenths). Estonia’s Jane Trepp, a former LSU Tiger, took 2nd in 35.54.
After hearing reports of SwimMAC’s Josh Schneider swimming hand-time 22.1’s in practice last week, I was hoping for a really outstanding swim in the 50 free in this meet. He didn’t quite hit that lofty buildup, but he did swim a very good 22.40 that would have won the Columbus Grand Prix without having to go far from home. His training partners Nick Brunelli (22.66) and Cullen Jones (22.77) were 2nd and 3rd, respectively.
Micah Lawrence won her second event of the meet with a 2:27.11 in the women’s 200 breaststroke. That almost matches her time from last summer’s USA Swimming National Championship meet. Her swims are really starting to show her relative comfort back training with David Marsh after what had become a tough situation at Auburn.
Kathleen Baker, who is swimming her first race as a 15-year old after breaking Missy Franklin’s National Age Group Record in the 100 yard backstroke in February. She won this Sectional Championship in 1:02.55. That put her just ahead of Kylie Stewart, who was 2nd in 1:02.93.
Nick Thoman won the 100 backstroke in 53.74, well ahead of Eugene Godsoe (54.48) and former Tar Heel Tommy Wyher (56.30). Thoman’s time nestles neatly .01 behind David Plummer’s winning swim at the Columbus Grand Prix, and just ahead of Matt Grevers’ runner-up swim from that same meet. This is shaping up to finally be the epic Nationals battle that has been anticipated (but never really lived up to) in this event for the last two years.
No online results are available for this meet until its completion, but they are available on smartphones through the Meet Mobile app.