Nero Beats Teammate Kovacs in 400 IM Battle on Friday in Federal Way

Braden Keith
by Braden Keith 0

March 14th, 2015 Club, News

Day 3 of the 2015 Federal Way Sectional Championships saw 6 total events with 12 different winners (including relays), demonstrating the depth of the geographically-expansive crowd.

Emma Schanz, who was the star of the meet on Thursday night, didn’t race in Friday’s finals session, but there was still impressive swims.

That included a new lifetime best in the 200 free from Ashley Sutherland, who swam a 1:48.27 – beating out Ellie Thornbrue from the Hillsboro Heat (1:48.66). Sutherland has made her mark over the last two seasons as more of a sprinter, but this win expands her range before heading off to Arizona next fall, where the Wildcats are in need of as much depth as they can get their hands on.

In the other women’s individual event, club and high school teammates Bailey Nero and Bailey Kovac battled, but it was the more experienced Nero who won in 4:12.39. Kovacs took 2nd in 4:15.39.

This race went just as one might expect in a battle between these two versatile stars. Kovac was very aggressive in her first 200, going out in 2:00.9 – almost three seconds faster than Nero. Training together every day, however, Nero was patient and fought back in her specialty – the breaststroke leg – and cut that lead in half.

When it came down to the freestyle leg, though, Nero pulled all of that back with a very good closing 100 split of 58.6.

There were a few other swimmers in the hunt halfway in this race (Kim Williams, Thornbrue, Lindsay Morrow) but all of them were left behind on the breaststroke.

Hawaiian ‘aukai Lileikis picked up his 2nd win in the last 2 days with a 1:36.10 in the men’s 200 free. That’s short of his season-best down three weeks ago in his home state.

Tommy Thach took 2nd in 1:37.87 and Tommy Brewer took 3rd in 1:37.97, with neither of them able to open or close as well as Lileikis did.

In the men’s 400 IM, Abrahm DeVine from the Cascade Swim Club swam a 3:47.97 to win by a dominant, nearly three-second margin.

Rolling into the relays with four individual winners, none of them were able to lead their teams to relay wins, meaning 8 more swimmers were crowned section champions to end the day.

In the 200 free relay, that was a foursome from The Dolphins team in Oregon: a relay made up of Alayna Connor, Jordan Ashmore, Lindsay Swail, and Sierra Sexton. They combined for a 1:32.47, which put them just six-tenths away from the 15-16 National Age Group Record.

In the men’s relay, the King Aquatic Club moved to three-for-three on the week in relays, with Mathias Oh, Thomas Anderson, Dale Williams, and Zachary Wagner.

Full, live meet results available here.




In This Story

Leave a Reply

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

Read More »