Night number two of NCSA Junior Nationals hits tonight from Orlando, Florida. Simone Manuel had perhaps the most eye-popping swim of the morning with a 47.67 to grab the top seed in the 100 free. NOVA’s Francis Haas looks for his second win of the meet in the 500 free after pacing the 1000 on night 1. In addition, a number of athletes are in the hunt for dual titles, including Sam McHugh, Michael Andrew and Kylie Stewart.
Tonight’s events will include the 200 back, 100 free (girls only), 500 free (boys only), 100 breast and 200 fly. The girls 800 free relay will also wrap up tonight with the two fastest heats.
NCSA Junior Nationals
- When: Tuesday, March 18th – Saturday, March 22nd
- Where: Orlando YMCA Aquatics Center, Orlando, Florida
- NCSA Championship Central
- Prelims recap
- Full results are available on Meet Mobile under “2014 NCSA Spring Championship.”
Girls 200 Back
Turns out that morning swim for Kylie Stewart was even easier than anyone though. The Dynamo 17-year-old smashed almost five seconds off her prelims time to crack 1:50 for the first time in her career, going 1:49.85. The Georgia commit was out in 53.43 to her feet at the 100 before coming home in 56.42.
Second went to 14-year-old Emily Meilus of Nation’s Capital. She cut another half-second after taking two full seconds off this morning, winding up with a 1:54.87. Elizabeth Nelson out of Wisconsin was 1:55.74 for third, just touching out NCAP’s Kristina Li (1:55.80).
Li and Meilus’s teammate Carrie Boone went 1:56.08 for fifth. There was a bit of a dropoff to St. Croix Swim Club of Minnesota’s Mickayla Hinkle (1:57.31) before a pair of 1:58s (Hannah Lindsey and Temarie Tomley) rounded out the championship heat.
Boys 200 Back
The battle in the front set up by prelims was a good one, with the top two seeds Tristan Sanders and Sam McHugh putting up much faster finals swims in racing away from the pack. Sanders pulled away slowly but surely, leading by half a second at the 100 and ending up with a 1-second margin by the time the clock stopped. His 1:41.84 was a lifetime-best by seven tenths for the Palm Harbor YMCA swimmers. McHugh went 1:42.82 in taking second, a PR by well over a second for the Baylor swimmers.
Brennan Balogh moved up from the fourth seed to take third for Lincoln Select; his 1:44.08 was another career-best. Dynamo 15-year-old Michael Taylor took fourth in 1:45.05, just holding off John Shebat of NCAP who went 1:45.37.
Jordan Ross and Alexander Martin each went 1:45 and Jason Arthur took home 8th place.
Girls 100 Free
Simone Manuel went a lifetime-best this morning, and it was hard to gauge how much faster she’d go at night, considering how hard it can be to drop large chunks of time in the sprint events. Turns out Manuel had plenty more in the tank. The 17-year-old from First Colony went 47.09 tonight to crack the National Age Group record held by international superstar Missy Franklin.
Manuel is now closing in on 46-seconds, and with over a year left in the 17-18 age group, she should have a very strong chance to push that record under 47 (if Franklin doesn’t do it herself at the NCAA Championships on Saturday).
Manuel’s future Stanford teammate Janet Hu took second for NCAP in 48.85, still about a half-second off her best. Caroline McTaggart of All-Star Aquatics also got under 49 with a third-place 48.99.
Katherine Drabot out of Wisconsin went 49.10, a PR, for fourth place, beating fellow 16-year-old Megan Moroney. Another set of Wisconsin-ites came next, Abby Jagdfeld (49.52) and Kristin Malone (49.56). Temarie Tomley closed out the A heat.
Boys 500 Free
Francis Haas took another second and a half off his prelims swim to win the event easily, although it still fell short of his best time, which won Winter Juniors. Haas was 4:17.85 for NOVA, going out in 1:39.44 but dropping off some split-wise over the next 200 yards before closing strong.
Second went to Nick Arakelian of Kingfish Aquatic Club of Waterford. He dropped 2+ seconds en route to a 4:21.36 and is now sniffing a sub-4:20 swim. He was actually only a second behind Haas at the 200, but couldn’t close quite as rapidly.
Jack Boyd of Sweet Home Aquatics put up a 4:22.54 for third; behind him were Tomas Peribonio and Matthew Hirschberger, each going 4:23-lows. Gavin Springer was 4:24.33 for NCAP before a bit of a dropoff – the final two in the heat were 4:26s. That was Machine’s James Murphy and Rockville Montgomery’s Brennan Novak.
Girls 100 Breast
After cruising to the 3-seed this morning, Ozaukee Aquatics 17-year-old Sam Senczyszyn blew past the field to win the 100 breast in 1:00.81. That’s just a few hundredths off her lifetime-best and was just enough to eke out the win over second-seeded Riley Scott. Scott, 16 and swimming for Marin Pirates, was 1:00.84.
Right on the edge of 1:00 was the Aquajets’ Olivia Anderson. She went 1:01.03 for third. Shoreview, Wisconsin’s Rachel Munson took fourth in 1:01.85, followed closely by Shea Hoyt of St. Charles Swim Club (Illinois).
In addition, the third-fastest time of the entire field came out of the “B” final, where 13-year-old Alexis Wenger of Grosse Point Gators went 1:00.98 to break the 13-14 NAG record set by Megan Quann all the way back in 1998.
Boys 100 Breast
Carsten Vissering ended his high school season as top dog among a fast group of high school breaststrokers. But after his 53.49 performance, Vissering saw Andrew Seliskar and Jacob Molacek go even faster, each breaking the national high school record in the 100 breast. But now Vissering joins Molacek under 53 seconds, going 52.83 to win the NCSA title and break the National Age Group record for 15-16s set by Seliskar last year.
Top-seeded Connor Hoppe out of Clovis Swim Club dropped another half-second to go 53.12 for second place. Those two were well ahead of the field. 14-year-old Michael Andrew missed breaking his own NAG in the event by almost a half-second, going 54.40 for third.
Just behind Andrew were Shane McNamara (54.51) and Ross Palazzo (54.53), and Ben Cono of Team Suffolk was the last swimmer in the heat under 55 seconds with a 54.78.
The B final went to Jae Park, who also got under 55. going 54.63 to take 9th overall.
Girls 200 Fly
The girls 200 fly saw the third NAG record in a row fall, and the fourth of the night. Not to be outdone by fellow Stanford commit Manuel, Janet Hu of NCAP smashed through the race in 1:52.92, taking 1.4 seconds off her best to get under the 17-18 National Age Group record set by Elaine Breeden back in 2007.
Hu went out like a lightning bolt, splitting 53.67 in the front half. She faded some with a 59.25 on the second 100, but it was still plenty enough to crush the field and beating Breeden’s record of 1:52.99.
Second place was another NCAP-er, 14-year-old Cassidy Bayer. Bayer was just off her own NAG record, going 1:56.08 (she was 1:56.01 to set the record in 2013).
200 back champ Kylie Stewart took third for Dynamo in 1:56.30. Behind her was Isabella Paez in 1:57.26.
Boys 200 Fly
Sam McHugh of Baylor swam a very patient 200 fly, coming from behind to top 14-year-old Michael Andrew over the final 100. Andrew went out in 49.44 with McHugh trailing just a tenth or so. But McHugh, the Tennessee signee, bruised his way past the competition on the final 100, splitting 53.63 on the final four lengths to win in 1:43.23. That’s a drop of .4 for McHugh.
Though Andrew watched McHugh swim by him late, he still picked up second place and smashed his own National Age Group record in the event. Andrew went 1:45.39, almost a second faster than he was at College Station Sectionals about a month ago.
Zachary Fong took third in 1:46.13 followed by another 16-year-old, Zach Harting (1:46.50). Frederick Schubert of NOVA and William Brooks of SwimAtlanta also got under 1:47 in the heat.
Girls 800 Free Relay
The final event of the night saw NCAP take home a big win. Robyn Dryer, Megan Byrnes, Cassidy Bayer and Janet Hu combined to go 7:15.67 for Nation’s Capital. That included a 1:46.62 for Hu, not long after breaking her NAG record in the 200 fly. Dryer was 1:49.12 leading off, Byrnes 1:49.40 and the 14-year-old Bayer 1:50.53.
They beat out Waukesha Express by a second and a half. Waukesha led early on Abby Jagdfeld‘s 1:46.90 leadoff split, but NCAP overcame that lead over the course of the race.
The Aquajets took third in 7:19.87, just beating out Dynamo’s 7:19.93. Kaia Grobe was 1:48.09 for the Minnesota-based Aquajets, while Georgia’s Dynamo picked up a 1:47.35 leadoff from Kylie Stewart.