Presenting the MP Weekly Wonders for the weekend of February 24-26, 2017.
Claire Tuggle, 12, Clovis Swim Club: 1000y free (10:07.59) – Tuggle slashed 12.1 seconds off her PB and finished second in the women’s open 1000 free at the, Juanita Allington Memorial Senior Meet hosted by Clovis Swim Club. She was 19 seconds faster than she’d been a year ago. Tuggle also went best times in the 200 back, 100/200 breast, and 200 IM, finishing in the top 5 in all her events.
Colin LaFave, 16, Greater Omaha Aquatics: 100y back (50.22) – Creighton Prep junior LaFave picked up his first Winter Juniors cuts in both the 100 back and 100 fly at the Nebraska State High School Championships, winning silver and gold, respectively. He improved his 100 back by 1.2 seconds and was 2.6 better than he’d been last year, and he took nearly 2 seconds off his 100 fly. He also dropped 2/10 in his 50 free, leading off Creighton Prep’s 200 free relay.
Ethan Gogulski, 17, Nitro Swimming: 200y back (1:45.07) – Swimming at USA Swimming Sectionals at College Station, Gogulski went a best time by 2.1 seconds in the 200 back, and was fully 8.1 seconds faster than he’d been in February 2016. He posted the third-fastest time for 18-and-under boys for the weekend, and earned his first invitation to Summer Nationals. Gogulski also went best times in the 500 free, 100 back, and 100 fly.
Eliza Whitmire, 14, Aquatic Team Of Mecklenburg: 100y breast (1:01.94) – Whitmire took 1.3 seconds off her personal best and won the girls’ 13-14 100 breast by 3.6 seconds at the North Carolina Short Course Age Group Championship. She has improved by 4.6 seconds in the last year, and with the #5 time in the country for 18-and-under girls for the weekend, Whitmire netted her first US Open invitation. She also won the 100/200 back, and left the meet with new PBs in the 50/100 free, 50/100/200 back, 100/200 breast, 100 fly, and 200 IM.
Antonio Octaviano, 14, Radnor Aquatic Club: 100y breast (56.33) – Swimming for Haverford School at the 2017 Eastern Interscholastic Swimming & Diving Championships, freshman Octaviano broke the 57-second barrier in the 100 breast for the first time, placing third in the race that Reece Whitley won with a national high school record. Octaviano dropped 7/10 and was 2.6 seconds faster than he’d been a year ago at this time. He now owns the fourth-fastest time in history for 13-14 boys. He also earned a PB in the 200 IM, dropping 2.4 seconds.
Gillian Davey, 15, Central Iowa Aquatics: 200y breast (2:11.87) – Davey won the 100 breast, 200 breast, and 400 IM at the Iowa Swimming Short Course Championships hosted by Iowa City Eels Swim Club. She went best times in the 100/200 breast, 200 fly, and 200/400 IM. Her 200 breast was a PB by 9/10, and 7 seconds ahead of where she’d been last year; it was also the #3 18-and-under time in the country for the weekend. She dropped nearly 4 seconds in the 200 IM and 5 in the 400 IM, and snagged her first Winter Juniors cuts in those events.
Miriam Guevara, 16, El Paso Aqua Posse: 100y fly (53.12) – Guevara came home from the College Station Sectional meet with new best times in five events: 100 back (-1.1), 200 back (-1.1), 100 fly (-1.0), 200 fly (-.7), and 200 IM (-2.0). Guevara’s 100 fly was the 4th-fastest in the country for 18-and-under girls for the weekend. She earned her first Winter Juniors cut in the 200 IM, and her first Summer Nationals cut in the 200 fly.
Lance Godard, 13, Empire KC Swim Club: 200y IM (1:57.62) – Swimming at the Missouri Valley Short Course Championships hosted by the Topeka Swim Association, Godard won the boys’ 13-14 100 back, 200 fly, 200 IM, and 400 IM. He went best times in all four events, as well as in the 500 free and 100 fly. His 200 IM time was an improvement of 1.7 seconds, and 4.7 better than last year’s. His 400 IM was a PB by 6, and 9.3 better than in March 2016.
Reminder: The Weekly Wonders column is a celebration of age-group swimming, where new champions are made every day. Anyone can look up the top swims of the week. That’s not what we’re doing here. If we were only reporting on the week’s top swims we would feature the same handful of athletes every Wednesday. Instead, this is an opportunity to introduce the swimming community to athletes who have made great strides in the context of their own particular swimming worlds. By association, it also celebrates their coaches and their teams. The Weekly Wonders column, therefore, amounts to a pat on the back for a job well done, and hopefully encourages swimmers of all levels to continue to reach from within to get to that next level.
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