Presenting our Weekly Wonders from the weekend of February 1st-3rd, 2019:
Daniel Baytin, 13, X-Cel Swimming (XCEL-NJ): 200 breast, 2:11.51 – Last weekend, Baytin dropped almost a second-and-a-half in his 200 breast, from 2:12.93 to 2:11.51. But more impressively, as of the end of 2017, he had never been under 2:21 in even. In early March 2018, he dropped to 2:19.51, then later that month went 2:15.00, reaching 2:13 by October, and then his previous best in December.
Reilly Tiltmann, 15, Elmbrook Swim Club (EBSC-WI): 100 back, 53.76 – In November 2017, Tiltmann’s best time in the 100 back was 55.28. For the next year after that, she was never faster, hovering in the 55-highs to 56-lows. Then on November 28, she dropped a 54.62, and then just two months later, went 54.27 then 53.76. Tiltmann also went best times in her 50 free (23.25), 100 free (49.75), 200 free (1:51.54), 50 free (5:11.55), 200 back (1:58.41), and 100 fly (54.51).
Caleb Kravitz, 18, St. Petersburg Aquatics (SPA-FL): 1650 free, 15:45.00 – The 18-year-old Kravitz swam his first official mile ever last weekend at the 2019 TBAC Winter Invitational. Enough said.
Emma Lasecki, 17, Green Bay Swim Club (GBSC-WI): 400 IM, 4:22.61 – Nearly two years after her last best time in the 400 IM, Lasecki dropped .25 to go 4:22.61. She only swam the event three times in 2018 – all in March – and never went under 4:24. She also went best times in her 100 free (52.77), 100 fly (55.83), 200 fly, where she dropped well over a second to break 2:00 for the first time and go 1:59.07.
Anna Moesch, 13, Streamline Aquatics (STAC-NJ): 100 free, 50.82 – Fresh off dropping 1.3 seconds in December –from 54.25 to 53.20 – Moesch took off another 1.1 last weekend. Further, in January 2018, her best in the event was 54.88. At the same meet last weekend, she also went best times in the 50 free (23.28), 200 free (1:57.01), 100 back (1:02.47), 100 breast (1:09.48), 200 breast (2:36.04), 100 fly (1:02.56), and 200 IM (2:12.57).
Jarrett Payne, 12, Springfield Family YMCA (SPY-OH): 100 fly, 53.60 – Payne began 2018 with a 58.21 in this event. He sat at that time for much of the year, going 55.02 in November, and then took off another second in December (54.02). In January 2019, he broke :55 for the first time, going 53.76, and then continued that streak last weekend at the 2019 Oh TYR Sport Winter Invite. Payne also dropped best times in the 50, 100, 200, and 500 free, as well as the 50 back and 100 fly.
Emily Wang, 13, Morris County Swim Club (MCSC-NJ): 200 IM, 2:06.28 – Wang entered 2018 with a 2:11.32 in her 200 IM. By March 2018, she was 2:08.67, and then in November, dropped it to 2:08.05. Just a month last, she skipped the 2:07s entirely, going 2:06.63 and then 2:06.33 on the same day. Last weekend, she continued to shave off time, going 2:06.28. She also went a best time in the 200 back (2:04.17) and 100 breast (1:08.26).
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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