It’s high school championship season in several parts of the country. That means fast swimming, and often from names you haven’t heard a lot about. Here are this week’s Daring Dozen:
James Jones, 16, Nation’s Capital Swim Club: 50 free (20.52) – Swimming for Robinson at the Virginia 6A North Region Championships, Jones set the meet record, winning the 50 free in his second-best ever time, .04 off his PB and a full second faster than his winning time from last year’s championship.
Emily Allen, 17, North Mecklenburg Aquatics: 100 free (49.33) – Allen led of the WA Hough 400 free relay at the North Caroline 4A State Championship with the top 100 free time in the nation for the week. It was her best showing in the last 14 month. Allen also anchored Hough’s state record-breaking 200 medley relay and lowered her own state record in the 100 free.
Michael Thibert, 15, Mansfield Aquatic Club: 200 free (1:40.29) – Swimming for Mansfield High, Thibert achieved his first national time standard winning the 200 free at the Region 2-5A Swimming & Diving Championships in Keller, Texas. Thibert came from behind and nailed a crazy 24.5 final 50 for the win.
Bridget Semenuk, 12, Empire Swimming: 500 free (5:11.71) – Semenuk won the 500 free and the 400 IM at the Second Chance Swim Meet hosted by Long Island Express. She went a best time and was 17 seconds faster than she had been last February.
Caroline Kulp, 12, Virginia Gators: 1000 free (10:41.94) – Kulp won the girls’ 11-12 50/100/500 free, 50/100 breast, 50 fly and 400 IM at the Gator Winter Storm Classic. Her 1000 time was 22 seconds faster than a year ago.
Isabel Gormley, 11, Asphalt Green Unified Aquatics: 1650 free (18:40.02) – Swimming her first mile at the Badger Mid Winter Swim, Gormley finished seventh in the girls’ 11 and over race. That puts her in the top-ten for eleven-year-old girls for the 2013-14 short course season.
John Shebat, 16, Nation’s Capital Swim Club: 100 back (48.92) – Representing Oakton at the Virginia 6A North Region Championships, Shebat won the 100 back and 200 IM (1:51.36), setting state records in each event. He also led off Oakton’s state record-setting medley relay in 22.70.
Cristian Bell, 13, Egg Harbor Township Seahawks: 200 back (1:59.35) – Bell broke 2:00 for the first time at the Jersey Wahoos’ Sweetheart Meet. Last year at the same meet he went 2:11.
Jessica Merritt, 15, SwimMAC Carolina: 100 breast (1:03.21) – Merritt won the 100 breast and 200 free (1:47.37, state record) swimming for WA Hough at the North Carolina 4A State Championship. Both swims were personal bests, and both were 1.5 seconds faster than a year ago. She also swam the breast leg for Hough’s state record-breaking 200 medley relay.
Alyssa Marsh, 16, SwimMAC Carolina: 100 fly (53.72) – Swimming for Pine Lake Prep, Marsh won both the 100 fly and 100 back (by about a half a pool length both times) at the North Carolina 1A/2A State Championships. Her 100 fly time smashed both the 1A/2A and state records, and her 100 back (54.86) broke the 1A/2A record.
Carsten Vissering, 16, Nation’s Capital Swim Club: 200 IM (1:48.10) – Vissering won the 200 IM and 100 breast swimming for Georgetown Prep at the DC Metro Swimming and Diving Championship. His IM marked his first dip under the 1:50 barrier and was his best-ever by nearly 3 seconds. As it turned out, it was a nice warm-up for his record-breaking 100 breast.
Kylie Goit, 11, Plymouth-Canton Cruisers: 400 IM (4:50.88) – Goit won the girls’ 11-12 50/100 free, 100 fly, and 100 IM and was third in the open 400 IM at the 2014 Polar Plunge ABC Meet hosted by Livonia Community Swim Club. Her 400 IM represented a 24-second drop in 3 months.
Special thanks to Lyle Campbell for his assistance in putting this list together.