Stanford Women, Florida Men Lead NCAA A Cut Totals After Invite Wknd

University of Virginia junior and recent Golden Goggle winner as part of the Relay Performance of the Year, Leah Smith, nabbed the first individual “A” cut of the NCAA season on November 13th. Since then, we’ve seen additional athletes come into the automatic qualifying fold, especially after this weekend’s series of invites across the country.  

Looking at the current swimmers in possession of an “A” cut on an individual level, Stanford Cardinal lead the way on the women’s side, holding a total of 6 cuts as of today.  Freshman Ella Eastin is responsible for 3 of those marks after this past weekend’s Art Adamson invite.  Eastin was one of the top recruits in the nation and is proving to be exactly the answer Stanford needed for its relatively thin IM group.

First, in the 200 IM event Eastin obliterated the national 200 IM rankings, going 1:54.53, a time that would have been 4th at last year’s NCAA Championships.  She quickly followed that up the next day of the invite with an incredible mark in the 400 IM, a time that would have won last year’s NCAA title by a wide margin. Her time of 4:01.04 was an entirely comfortable 1.4 seconds faster than now-graduated Aggie Sarah Henry went to score the NCAA title at last year’s championships. Eastin then roped in her 3rd cut in the form of her 1:53.34 in the 200 butterfly, topping the NCAA rankings by almost 2 full seconds at this point in the season.

Other members of the Cardinal with “A” cuts on the women’s side are speedster Lia Neal, backstroking ace Janet Hu and senior breaststroker Sarah Haase.  All 3 also nabbed their cuts at the Art Adamson, with Neal snagging the 100 freestyle win in an automatic qualifying time of 47.76. Hu climbed to the top of the NCAA rankings with her A time of 51.45 in the 100 backstroke, while Haase dipped beneath the qualifying standard in the 100 breaststroke, winning the invite’s event in a time of 58.27.

Texas A&M and University of Missouri are next in line in total number of women’s “A” cuts, with Aggies Bethany Galat holding the 200 IM and 400 IM cuts and Beryl Gastaldello clearing the 50 free standard. For Mizzou, it’s junior stand-out Abby Duncan who possesses 2 qualifying marks at this point, in the 100 and 200 breaststroke events, while teammate Katharine Ross also holds an A cut now in the 100 breaststroke event.

In terms of relays for the women, Stanford is the only team to hold an “A” cut in all 5 events, as the Cardinal sits atop the NCAA rankings in each relay after this weekend’s performances. University of Louisville is runner-up in the number of relay “A” cuts right now, holding a total of 3 across the 200 freestyle relay, 200 medley and 400 medley relays.

There is a clear leader in terms of number of individual “A” cuts on the men’s side at this point in the season as well. University of Florida tops the count with a total of 5 individual cuts, led by sophomore superstar Caeleb Dressel.

While competing at this past weekend’s Ohio State Invitational, Dressel dropped an eye-popping 18.77 flat start 50 freestyle to set a new pool record at McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion. Dressel won the NCAA title last year in 18.67, lending perspective to just how eye-popping this effort was for the sophomore at this point in the season.  An 18.77 would have finished 3rd overall in that same race in Iowa City.

Dressel scored a time of 42.02 the next night to win the 100 freestyle and top the NCAA rankings….until Mizzou’s Michael Chadwick stepped up on the blocks at the Tennessee Invite.  Chadwick now holds the fastest time thus far this NCAA season with his mark of 41.89, a time which would have finished 3rd at last year’s NCAA Championships.

Where Dressel really made heads turn was in his tremendous outing the 100 breaststroke, where he threw down a new school record of 51.88. Only Mizzou’s Fabian Schwingenschlogl has swum faster, taking his season’s best mark to 51.36 at the Tennessee Invite that same night.

Other Gator men with “A” cuts at this point include junior Jack Blyzinskyj, who won the 100 backstroke at the OSU Invite in a time of 45.43 to sit 2nd in the nation behind Alabama’s Luke Kaliszak’s 45.42. Gator sophomore Jan Switkowski registered an “A” cut of his own at the invite as well, winning the 200 butterfly in a time of 1:42.08.

With Chadwick’s 100 freestyle “A” cut, along with his 19.17 “A” cut freestyle and Schwingenschlogl’s aforementioned clocking, Mizzou holds the next highest number of individual “A” cuts for men with 3 total. Tennessee and Alabama hold 2 each.

Compared with the women’s relays where Stanford leads the nation across all, the men’s are a tad more diversified across the schools.  The Alabama men hold the top time/A cut in the 200 freestyle relay (1:17.13), while Florida holds the top marks in the 400/800 freestyle relays in times of 2:50.45 and 6:18.43, respectively. Mizzou holds the top times in both medleys, scoring marks of 1:24.39 in the 200 and 3:06.21 in the 400 medley relay.

*Quick note on defending NCAA Champions the Texas Longhorns: In addition to regular season meets so far against Indiana, UNC, NC State, the men competed in the Orange/White Intrasquad and Eddie Reese Invite, both of which were unofficial in terms of NCAA times.

Current Women’s NCAA “A” Cuts Per Individual Event:

  • 50 freestyle (21.86) – Liz Li (OSU) 21.83, Beryl Gastaldello (Texas A&M) 21.86
  • 100 freestyle (47.79) – Natalie Hinds (Florida) 47.75), Lia Neal (Stanford) 47.76
  • 200 freestyle (1:43.82) – None at this time
  • 500 freestyle (4:36.30) – Leah Smith (Virginia) 4:34.51
  • 1650 freestyle (15:53.50) – None at this time
  • 100 backstroke (51.51) – Janet Hu (Stanford) 51:45
  • 200 backstroke (1:51.95) – Danielle Galyer (Kentucky) 1:51.52
  • 100 breaststroke (59.04) – Sarah Haase (Stanford) 58.27, Katharine Ross (Mizzou) 58.66, Andee Cottrell (Louisville) 58.67, Abby Duncan (Mizzou) 58.83, Emily Fogle (Purdue) 58.88
  • 200 breaststroke (2:07.42) – Abby Duncan (Mizzou) 2:07.02, Emily Fogle (Purdue) 2:07.30
  • 100 butterfly (51.56) – Madeline Banic (Tennessee) 51.19, Kelsi Worrell (51.36)
  • 200 butterfly (1:54.22) – Ella Eastin (Stanford) 1:53.34
  • 200 IM (1:55.35) – Ella Eastin (Stanford) 1:54.53, Bethany Galat (Texas A&M) 1:55.22
  • 400 IM (4:05.37) – Ella Eastin (Stanford) 4:01.04, Bethany Galat (Texas A&M) 4:04.06

Current Men’s NCAA “A” Cuts Per Individual Event:

  • 50 freestyle (19.18) – Caeleb Dressel (Florida) 18.77, Michael Chadwick (Mizzou) 19.17
  • 100 freestyle (42.37) – Michael Chadwick (Mizzou) 41.89), Caeleb Dressel (Florida) 42.02
  • 200 freestyle (1:33.34) – None at this time.
  • 500 freestyle (4:13.60) – None at this time.
  • 1650 freestyle (14:46.04) – Evan Pinion (Tennessee) 14:44.23
  • 100 backstroke (45.44) – Luke Kaliszak (Alabama) 45.42, Jack Blyzinskyj (45.43)
  • 200 backstroke (1:40.33) – Hennessey Stuart (NC State) 1:40.22, Sean Lehane (Tennessee) 1:40.33
  • 100 breaststroke (52.08) – Fabian Schwingenschlogl (Mizzou) 51.36, Caeleb Dressel (Florida) 51.88
  • 200 breaststroke (1:53.07) – Anton McKee (Alabama) 1:53.00
  • 100 butterfly (45.85) – Caeleb Dressel (Florida) 45.01
  • 200 butterfly (1:42.43) – Jan Switkowski (Florida) 1:42.08)
  • 200 IM (1:42.51) – None at this time.
  • 400 IM (3:41.15) – None at this time.

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8 years ago

The young polish stallion that goes by the name of Jan Switkowski is just warming up in the Gainesville’s swamp. Keep your eyes open.

8 years ago

I think 1:42 is faster then the guys at texas have swam, Jan might be trying to prove his bronze at worlds was no fluke.

8 years ago

It went under the radar, but Florida’s Jan Switkowski nearly got the first men’s long course A cut of the year this weekend. He went a 1:57.03 in prelims of the 200 fly at Ohio State and the cut is 1:56.92. Bet he gets it at Duel in the Pool.

Andrew Majeske
8 years ago

In the article you forgot to mention Dressel’s 100 fly “A” cut.

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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