Scoring Out an 8-Team ISL Meet Based On First Meets From Groups A & B

Now that we’ve seen all eight teams in action at least once, the obvious question is: how would they fare against each other? We’ll see the top four teams (or at least, the top two American teams and the top two European teams) race each other in Vegas. But why wait that long when we can get a glimpse now? What would a ” Combined Match 1″ meet look like?

I took all the times from Indianapolis and Lewisville and scored them using the normal ISL format. That is, individual events score 9 points for first down to 1 point for eighth. Except now we have sixteen competitors in each event, so this means that half of them score no points at all. This is a fairly skewed way to score the meet – since I’m taking valuable swimmers that finished 5th or 6th respectively and giving them no points, thereby putting more value on the higher finishers – but it’s a starting point. What it also ends up meaning is that teams can actually score no points in an event. Or even worse, teams can lose points in an event (if, for instance, neither entrant makes top eight and at least one doesn’t meet the standard).

There’s a few other caveats to get out of the way before I dive into the fun:

  • ISL is all about place, not time, and in-race strategy is going to depend on the other people in the race. We saw many instances of swimmers slowing down to conserve energy after securing a win, or swimmers carefully timing their finishing surge to eke out a win – and I’m basically throwing all of that away by having somebody in a different city entirely out-touch them.
  • There’s also strategy that goes into lineups, especially with relays. You plan your relays for who you’re racing against. None of the coaches in Dallas were concerned with Indianapolis times, nor should they have been. But I am!
  • The largest caveat is the Skins. The Skins are difficult to simulate. I’ll talk about those at the end.

Let’s begin!

The first event on the program is the women’s 100 fly. The combined results were:

1. 55.65   – SJOSTROM Sarah (ENS)
2. 55.88   – DAHLIA Kelsi (CAC)
3. 55.91   – McKEON Emma (LON)
4. 56.69   – STEWART Kendyl (LAC)
5. 56.76   – WATTEL Marie (LON)
6. 56.81   – THROSSELL Brianna (DCT)
7. 57.07   – OSMAN Farida (LAC)
8. 57.71   – di LIDDO Elena (AQC)
9. 57.84   – KROMOWIDJOJO Ranomi (IRO)
10. 57.91   – SHKURDAI Anastasiya (ENS)
11. 58.04   – COMERFORD Mallory (CAC)
12. 58.11   – BIANCHI Ilaria (AQC)
13. 58.22   – LOVEMORE Tayla (NYB)
14. 58.23   – GALAT Bethany (DCT)
15. 58.75** – BUYS Kimberly (IRO)
16. 58.76** – THOMAS Alys (NYB)

Sarah Sjostrom from Energy Standard still wins, and Group “A” as a whole goes 1-2 with Kelsi Dahlia. Nevertheless, London Roar picks up the most points with 10 thanks to their 3-5 finish here. Neither Team Iron nor the NY Breakers get anyone in the top 8, and both even had a swimmer fail to meet the qualifying standard (as noted with the ** two asterisks), so they end up losing 1 point.

Skipping ahead a few events to the men’s 50 breast. The Aqua Centurions put on a show in Indianapolis, and that show still holds:

1. 26.03   – MARTINENGHI Nicolo (AQC)
2. 26.11   – SCOZZOLI Fabio (AQC)
3. 26.15   – MOROZOV Vladimir (IRO)
4. 26.16   – SHYMANOVICH Ilya (ENS)
5. 26.20   – LIMA Felipe (LAC)
6. 26.39   – FINK Nic (CAC)
7. 26.62   – PRIGODA Kirill (LON)
8. 26.70   – WILSON Matthew (LON)
9. 26.75   – CHUPKOV Anton (ENS)
10. 26.77   – FINNERTY Ian (DCT)
11. 26.82   – STEVENS Peter John (IRO)
12. 26.86   – LICON Will (LAC)
13. 26.97   – MILLER Cody (DCT)
14. 27.05   – ANDREW Michael (NYB)
15. 27.16   – WILSON Andrew (CAC)
16. 27.27   – KOCH Marco (NYB)

Getting 16 points in a quad meet is huge, but in this Combined Match 1 meet format is even bigger. Neither NY nor DC score any points here.

The London Roar went 1-2 in the women’s freestyle relay in Dallas, but Indianapolis had much more firepower so they fall to a mere 1-4:

1. 3:27.90   – LON
2. 3:28.63   – ENS
3. 3:29.62   – CAC
4. 3:30.93   – LON
5. 3:31.58   – NYB
6. 3:32.52   – DCT
7. 3:32.79   – LAC
8. 3:33.10   – CAC
9. 3:33.64   – LAC
10. 3:34.28   – IRO
11. 3:34.35   – ENS
12. 3:35.19   – AQC
13. 3:36.32   – DCT
14. 3:36.38   – NYB
15. 3:40.63** – IRO
16. 3:42.47** – AQC

Similarly, Energy Standard went 1-2 in the men’s 50 free… but not quite in this format:

1. 20.77   – MANAUDOU Florent (ENS)
2. 20.93   – MOROZOV Vladimir (IRO)
3. 20.96   – CHALMERS Kyle (LON)
4. 21.18   – ADRIAN Nathan (LAC)
5. 21.36   – ANDREW Michael (NYB)
6. 21.39   – PROUD Ben (ENS)
7. 21.43   – HELD Ryan (LAC)
8. 21.54   – CHIERIGHINI Marcelo (NYB)
9. 21.60   – FRATUS Bruno (LON)
10. 21.65   – TIMMERS Pieter (IRO)
11. 21.68   – RESS Justin (CAC)
12. 21.69   – CONDORELLI Santo (AQC)
13. 21.79   – BECKER Bowe (CAC)
14. 21.79   – HOWARD Robert (DCT)
15. 21.80   – APPLE Zach (DCT)
16. 21.80   – DOTTO Luca (AQC)

The men’s 50 free does not have as much parity as some of the other events. With Energy, LA, and NY each scoring both of their swimmers, that leaves DC, Cali, and Aqua no points.

But it wasn’t all gloomy for the DC Trident. The more distance-oriented team had a strong showing in the women’s 200 free, still maintaining that 1-2 finish even after Dallas:

1. 1:52.88   – HAUGHEY Siobhan (DCT)
2. 1:53.48   – LEDECKY Katie (DCT)
3. 1:53.58   – McKEON Emma (LON)
4. 1:53.68   – TITMUS Ariarne (CAC)
5. 1:54.42   – HEEMSKERK Femke (ENS)
6. 1:54.91   – WILSON Madison (NYB)
7. 1:54.99   – ANDRUSENKO Veronika (IRO)
8. 1:55.05   – HIBBOTT Holly (LON)
9. 1:55.07   – SANCHEZ Kayla (ENS)
10. 1:56.29   – McLAUGHLIN Katie (LAC)
11. 1:56.65   – COMERFORD Mallory (CAC)
12. 1:57.40   – KESELY Ajna (IRO)
13. 1:57.64   – EASTIN Ella (LAC)
14. 1:58.01   – KOHLER Sarah (AQC)
15. 1:59.62** – DELOOF Gabby (NYB)
16. 2:00.19** – MILEY Hanna (AQC)

Though the London Roar came right back and went 1-2 in the men’s version, and DC get shut out of points in the process. Aqua Centurions went 1-2 in this event in Indianapolis, but fall all the way to 6-7 in this format:

1. 1:41.58   – GRAHAM Alexander (LON)
2. 1:42.94   – WINNINGTON Elijah (LON)
3. 1:43.33   – LEWIS Clyde (NYB)
4. 1:44.13   – SELISKAR Andrew (LAC)
5. 1:44.14   – PIERONI Blake (LAC)
6. 1:44.21   – CORREIA Breno (AQC)
7. 1:44.71   – ZELLMANN Poul (AQC)
8. 1:44.90   – MAJCHRZAK Kacper (CAC)
9. 1:45.04   – GROTHE Zane (DCT)
10. 1:45.11   – STJEPANOVIC Velimir (DCT)
11. 1:45.13   – MILAK Kristof (IRO)
12. 1:45.16   – de LUCCA Joao (NYB)
13. 1:46.15   – GIREV Ivan (ENS)
14. 1:46.48   – HAAS Townley (CAC)
15. 1:47.11   – ZIRK Kregor (ENS)
16. 1:48.19   – BENTZ Gunnar (IRO)

The first day would end with a very close scoring race:

1. 162.5  London Roar
2. 146.0  Energy Standard
3. 145.0  LA Current
4. 115.5  Cali Condors
5.  79.0  Team Iron
T6.  57.0  DC Trident and Aqua Centurions
8.  36.0  NY Breakers

Very tight race between the top three teams, 17.5 points is a lot more in this format than it is normally, but it’s still a fairly small margin. Cali could catch up. Although the scoring here clearly shows a two-tiered system. Without enough firepower to score the big points, and with a scoring system which penalizes middle placement, DC, Aqua, and NY are towards the bottom. NY especially is hurting with numerous time standard penalties, which ends up with them actually losing points in several events.

We did have one first place tie: in the men’s 100 backstroke on day two:

1. 50.16   – KOLESNIKOV Kliment (ENS)
1. 50.16   – GUIDO Guilherme (LON)
3. 50.36   – MURPHY Ryan (LAC)
4. 50.58   – GREVERS Matthew (LAC)
5. 50.76   – SABBIONI Simone (AQC)
6. 50.82   – GLINTA Robert (IRO)
7. 51.11   – DIENER Christian (LON)
8. 51.37   – PEBLEY Jacob (NYB)
9. 51.57   – LARKIN Mitch (CAC)
9. 51.57   – HOLLARD Tristan (DCT)
11. 51.77   – KAWECKI Radoslaw (CAC)
12. 51.92   – BOHUS Richard (IRO)
13. 52.66   – CHRISTOU Apostolos (AQC)
14. 53.88   – REID Christopher (NYB)
15. 54.25** – DEVINE Abrahm (DCT)
16. 54.62** – ZIRK Kregor (ENS)

But let’s just cut to the Skins. Simulating the rest of the events is pretty straightforward: take all sixteen times, sort them, deal with ties, done. And heading into the skins, it is still a pretty close race:

1. 276.0  London Roar
2. 256.5  LA Current
3. 245.0  Energy Standard
4. 231.5  Cali Condors
5. 162.0  Team Iron
6. 102.5  DC Trident
7.  94.0  Aqua Centurions
8.  81.5  NY Breakers

Any of the top four teams is still mathematically alive here. So, let’s go on with the show. How do we simulate the skins? Let’s run round 1 – the round at which we definitely have a time for everyone – and see what happens:

1. 23.83 – CAMPBELL Cate (LON)
2. 23.85 – KROMOWIDJOJO Ranomi (IRO)
3. 23.89 – SJOSTROM Sarah (ENS)
4. 23.97 – HEEMSKERK Femke (ENS)
5. 24.01 – McKEON Emma (LON)
6. 24.22 – GEER Margo (LAC)
7. 24.23 – GASTALDELLO Beryl (LAC)
8. 24.25 – WASICK Kasia (CAC)
9. 24.28 – BLUME Pernille (NYB)
10. 24.32 – SMOLIGA Olivia (CAC)
11. 24.35 – KENNEDY Madison (DCT)
12. 24.46 – HAUGHEY Siobhan (DCT)
13. 24.54 – BUSCH Kim (IRO)
14. 24.60 – DELOOF Catherine (NYB)
15. 25.03 – OLIVEIRA Larissa (AQC)
16. 25.05 – di PIETRO Silvia (AQC)

Energy Standard STILL has top two of the four! But wait… wait. Emma McKeon, who finished 2nd in Dallas, ahead of her London teammate Cate Campbell, was actually only 5th fastest in the first round. So I guess… I eliminate her? That… seems fair I guess. That’s how skins works. McKeon gets 5th. Okay, next round:

1. 24.09 – KROMOWIDJOJO Ranomi (IRO)
2. 24.31 – CAMPBELL Cate (LON)
3. 24.32 – SJOSTROM Sarah (ENS)
4. 24.58 – HEEMSKERK Femke (ENS)

OHHHH. Energy Standard goes down! Who saw that coming? Cate Campbell with the magic touch.

Except Campbell didn’t make the final in Dallas, so I don’t actually have a third time for her. Kromowidjojo went 24.46, so I’m just going to go ahead and give her the automatic win.

Which is more than a little strange – in the Dallas results, McKeon got 2nd and Campbell got 3rd and in the Combined Match 1 meet results, Campbell gets 2nd but McKeon gets 5th.

Score check!

1. 301.0  London Roar
2. 267.0  Energy Standard
3. 261.5  LA Current
4. 232.5  Cali Condors
5. 189.0  Team Iron
6. 102.5  DC Trident
7.  94.0  Aqua Centurions
8.  81.5  NY Breakers

London now with a huge lead. But not insurmountable! Energy Standard and LA Current could still catch up! Let’s run round one:

1. 21.02 – ADRIAN Nathan (LAC)
2. 21.17 – McEVOY Cameron (LON)
3. 21.24 – MANAUDOU Florent (ENS)
4. 21.27 – ANDREW Michael (NYB)
5. 21.31 – MOROZOV Vladimir (IRO)
6. 21.36 – CHALMERS Kyle (LON)
7. 21.41 – HELD Ryan (LAC)
8. 21.52 – CONDORELLI Santo (AQC)
9. 21.53 – PROUD Ben (ENS)
10. 21.59 – HOWARD Robert (DCT)
11. 21.59 – SZABO Szebasztian (IRO)
12. 21.62 – BECKER Bowe (CAC)
13. 21.66 – RESS Justin (CAC)
14. 21.79 – APPLE Zach (DCT)
15. 21.81 – DOTTO Luca (AQC)
16. 21.85 – CHIERIGHINI Marcelo (NYB)

Team Iron’s Vladimir Morozov took a gamble in the first round, and that gamble paid off in Dallas – he won the Skins and the MVP. But in this Combined Match 1 meet format, Florent Manaudou’s round one swim from Indianapolis nips him too, so he finishes 5th!

I suspect that he will lose very little sleep over this.

Anyway, onto the next one:

1. 21.58 – ADRIAN Nathan (LAC)
2. 21.61 – ANDREW Michael (NYB)
3. 21.66 – McEVOY Cameron (LON)
4. 22.00 – MANAUDOU Florent (ENS)

This is another example of someone getting bit by the Combined Match 1 meet format. Florent Manaudou in his second round swim basically stopped racing like 10 meters from the wall. It was not a close race. It’s quite possible that, had it in any way mattered at all, he could’ve swum a 21.6. But it did not matter to him. It really only matters to me, for the scope of this article. So… Florent eliminated in 4th.

And once again, we end up with a swimmer in the final (NY Breakers’ Michael Andrew) who did not actually make the final in his own quad meet. I thereby crown the Combined Match 1 meet winner of the men’s skins as… Nathan Adrian!

The final Combined Match 1 meet score:

  1. 316.0  London Roar
  2. 290.5  LA Current
  3. 277.0  Energy Standard
  4. 232.5  Cali Condors
  5. 193.0  Team Iron
  6. 102.5  DC Trident and NY Breakers (tie)
  7. 95.0  Aqua Centurions

London Roar dominated this meet the whole way, winning 14 of the 37 events. No other team won more than 6 (Cali Condors and Energy Standard). They were also one of the most well-rounded, managing to score in all but 6 of the events (LA Current scored in all but 4, Energy Standard also scored in all but six).

But let’s try a different approach to scoring. One that gives team depth the proper support it deserves. Let’s do NCAA scoring. That is, take the same 9-7-…-1 scoring that ISL uses and use that instead for 9th through 16th place. And have 1st through 8th score 20 down to 11. Relays score double. Skins score triple and double as usual. A skins win is thus worth 60 points, while going 1-2 in an individual event is worth 37.

Turns out, that scoring approach doesn’t change too much (outside of just ending up with much larger numbers):

1. 1,062.0  London Roar
2. 1,034.5  LA Current
3.   994.5  Energy Standard
4.   914.0  Cali Condors
5.   805.5  Team Iron
6.   646.5  DC Trident
7.   638.0  NY Breakers
8.   586.0  Aqua Centurions

The only difference is that DC is now ahead of NY (by a whopping 8.5 points), instead of tied. But hey, every point counts!

Is this representative of league standings? Is London going to win the inaugural ISL final in Vegas? Is Energy going to get nipped by LA?

Guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

MVP Standings:

With the normal ISL scoring, the MVP of the Combined Match 1 meet would be London Roar’s Cate Campbell, with 52.5 points. The remainder of the top 5:
  1. 52.5 – Cate Campbell (London Roar)
  2. 43.5 – Sarah Sjostrom (Energy Standard)
  3. 42.5 – Nathan Adrian (LA Current)
  4. 40.5 – Ranomi Kromowidjojo (Team Iron)
  5. 37.0 – Michael Andrew (NY Breakers)
Of course with this scoring format, some athletes could actually end up with negative points. Sixteen of them in fact. Two, Alys Thomas (NY Breakers) and Hannah Miley (Aqua Centurions) scored -2 points.
With the NCAA scoring, the MVP would still be Cate Campbell, with the same top 5. Though in a slightly different order (Michael Andrew, then Sjostrom, then Kromowidjojo, then Nathan Adrian).

For those curious, we’ve got the full scored-out meet embedded below, including full MVP standings:

Full Scored Meet – Indy & Lewisville

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JCO

It’s too bad Dressel didn’t swim Indy. Would’ve been interesting to see if having him in this simulated meet boosts the Condors ahead of ES/Current. Once London gets their full team together, it’s hard to imagine they’ll lose, but crazier things have happened in the sports world.

I think on some level we also have to evaluate that the championship meet isn’t until right before Christmas. London right now looks spectacular because they’ve had a lot of young swimmers, who regular readers of this site certainly recognize but who are far from superstars, like Minna Atherton and Matthew Wilson, swim really well. Better than anybody could have hoped for. So, can they keep it up? Seems like if it gets to 2 months into the season, and after the initial burst of energy subsides and everyone ‘regresses to the middle,’ the advantage is with the Condors and Energy Standard.

Tyson

Since months before the world champs Matt Wilson was going within 0.5 of the 200m breast WR LC then he tied it at world champs and in the finals was 0.01 behind it. I’m pretty sure that’s what you’d call consistency

Barry

Stay tuned for next week’s episode!

BairnOwl

London Roar is so strong that I think it would take a big underperformance (plus a relay DQ or two) for them to lose.

CraigH

Why are we even looking at Indianapolis results? I think it is pretty clear that for that first weekend, most of the teams that weren’t Energy Standard bad no idea how to structure their lineups or relays to maximize points. Lewisville versus Naples would probably be a much more accurate representation.

Troyy

I’m guessing they’ll probably do this again next week for Budapest vs Naples.

BairnOwl

I did a similar analysis by comparing the times from Indy and Lewisville but ended up with a different result, because I only looked at the teams most likely to make the finals (London Roar, LA Current, Energy Standard, and Cali Condors), and relative positions are obviously crucial. I got these final results: 1. London Roar – 496.5 2. Energy Standard – 430 3. LA Current – 420 4. Cali Condors 365.5 It’s interesting to see that Energy Standard and LA Current are about as close as they are in the Combined Match with all 8 teams, but the positions are flipped here. Also, McKeon wins it in my skins simulation but only gets 5th in the Combined Match, which… Read more »

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