Presenting the MP Weekly Wonders for the weekends of March 3-5 and March 10-12, 2017.
Gabe Machado, 13, Boise YMCA Swim Team: 500y free (4:47.15) – It seems every time Machado swims the 500 he drops another couple of seconds. After breaking 5:00 for the first time in September 2016, he went 4:58 in November, 4:52 in December, 4:50 in January, and now 4:47 for a PB by 3.8 seconds, and a yearly improvement of 17, at the Pacific Region North YMCA Swimming Championships hosted by Corvallis Aquatic Team. Machado won the boys’ 13-14 500 free at the meet, as well as the 1000 free and 200 back.
Evan Holt, 15, Club North Swimming: 1000y free (9:18.51) – Holt dropped an astounding 31.6 seconds and won the men’s open 1000 free at the Region VIII Spring Sectionals at Mizzou Aquatic Center in Columbia, Missouri. He also dropped 29 seconds in the 1650 free and placed seventh, and 4.2 in the 500 free, finishing fourth. Holt picked up his first Winter Juniors cuts in both the 500 and 1000 freestyles over the weekend.
Jason Park, 16, Metroplex Aquatics: 100y back (47.90) – Registering his second-best time ever, Park won the 100 back at the Lakeside Stampede with 47.90. He also won the 200 back and placed third in the 200 free. In the latter event, he dropped 1.4 seconds in prelims to notch his first Winter Juniors cut in the distance, then another 6/10 in finals to qualify for Summer Juniors.
Sadie Runeman, 13, Crimson Aquatics: 200y back (2:00.88) – Runeman dropped 1.5 seconds in prelims, and another 3.1 in finals to win the girls’ 13-14 200 back at New England Swimming’s 11-14 Age Group Championships hosted by Bluefish Swim Club. She earned her first Winter Juniors cut ever with the finals swim. Runeman finished 11th in the 200 free, 16th in the 1000 free, 2nd in the 100 back, 8th in the 200 breast, and 6th in the 200 IM.
Asma Khan, 11, Ridgewood Y Dolphins: 200y back (2:14.14) – Swimming at the Northeast Ohio YMCA Swim League Championships, Khan finished fourth in the girls’ open 200 back with a personal best by 1.5 seconds. She has swum the event 7 times since November and dropped a total of 10 seconds in 4 months. Khan also won the girls’ 11-12 50 back and placed second in the 200 free.
Sinclair Larson, 17, SwimMAC Carolina: 200y back (1:55.33) – Larson won the 200 back at the ESSZ Senior Sectionals in Greensboro, North Carolina, with a PB by nearly 1 second. She was 4.7 seconds faster than she’d been at this time last year. Larson also won the 200/500 free and was runner-up in the 1000 free and 400 IM.
Coleen Gillilan, 15, Fort Collins Area Swim Team: 100y breast (1:00.42) – Gillilan broke 1:01 for the first time finishing second to teammate Zoe Bartel in the 100 breast at Speedo Sectionals at Iowa City, Iowa. She improved her PB by 1.4 seconds and was 3.4 ahead of last year’s pace, earning her first Summer Nationals cut. Gillilan was also runner-up in the 100 free, 200 fly, 200 IM, and 400 IM, and third in the 200 breast and 100 fly.
Cameron Dafoe, 14, Cypress Fairbanks Swim Club: 200y IM (1:51.40) – Dafoe won the boys’ 13-14 200 IM at the Short Course Texas Age Group Swimming Championships hosted by Mid-Cities Arlington Swimming. He bested his previous PB by .38 and was 4 seconds faster than he’d been a year ago. Dafoe also won the 500 free, 100 back, 100/200 breast and 400 IM, and was runner-up in the 1000 free.
Carson Prouty, 14, Canoe City Swim Club: 200y IM (1:57.73) – Prouty dropped 6 seconds to win the boys’ 13-14 200 IM at the Maine State YMCA Swim Meet. He broke meet and Maine YMCA state records in both the IM and the 100 back, which he also won (in 53.22, just .11 off the PB he achieved winning gold at the Maine Class A High School State Championships as a freshman in February). Prouty has now qualified for YMCA Nationals in both events. Prouty capped off his evening with a 22.98 leadoff on the CCSC 4×50 free relay, an improvement of 1.9 seconds from his previous best 50 free.
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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