Texas Freshman Lydia Jacoby Pulls Off Comeback Win in 100 Breast, Ranks 7th All-Time

by Riley Overend 5

March 17th, 2023 Big 12, College, News


Texas freshman Lydia Jacoby’s comeback win in the 100-yard breaststroke on Friday night catapulted her inside the top 10 rankings of all-time performers in the event.

The reigning Olympic gold medalist registered her “first big win since the Olympics,” clocking a 57.03 to shave .26 seconds off her NAG record from last month’s Big 12 Championships. In the process, Jacoby moved up from No. 10 to No. 7 in the all-time performer rankings.

“Going into Olympic Trials and the Olympics, I was kind of a rookie and no one knew who I was,” Jacoby reflected. “I had the mentality of, ‘I’ve never done this — I have so many chances to do it.’ Then once I had done it, I kind of got in my head like, ‘I’ve done this — I have to do it again, I have to do it again.’ So I’ve just kind of switched that mentality around to, ‘I’ve done this, and I have nothing to prove.’ So just swimming freely is the biggest thing.”

Jacoby sat back in third place behind Texas teammate Anna Elendt and Tennessee’s Mona McSharry at the midway point of the race before blazing home in 31.10 to secure the NCAA title by just .13 seconds over McSharry (57.16).

“I felt really good,” Jacoby said. “Today was the first day of my meet. I feel like USA Swimming’s eight-day meets have really prepared me for that. Coming into tonight, I just felt good, I felt loose. I knew that I could win it, I knew that anybody else in that heat could’ve won it, so it was great to come out with that victory.”

Jacoby’s Splits Comparison, Best 100 Breast Times

2023 NCAAs 2023 Big 12s
50 Breast 26.93 27.09
100 Breast 57.03 (30.10) 57.29 (30.20)

Jacoby arrived at Texas last fall with a personal best of 58.87 that she’s already dropped nearly two seconds off of in less than a year. Tonight was her first time taking the 100 breast out sub-27 on the front half of the race.

“I think my first 50 was definitely a little bit crunchy,” Jacoby said. “I was just trying to stay with everyone, stay in that mix, because I know that I can back-half it but I still have to be in there to be able to do that. I think the first 50 definitely could have been better, but I brought it home like I like to do.”

Meanwhile, McSharry is now the eighth-fastest performer ever in the event after her runner-up finish, fittingly right behind Jacoby in the rankings. McSharry shaved .02 seconds off her previous best from last year’s NCAA Championships, improving on her fourth-place finish from last season.

Top Performers, Women’s 100-Yard Breast

  1. Lilly King – 55.73 (2019)
  2. Molly Hannis – 56.64 (2017)
  3. Sophie Hansson – 56.72 (2022)
  4. Alexis Wenger – 56.76 (2022)
  5. Anna Elendt – 56.88 (2022)
  6. Kaitlyn Dobler – 56.93 (2022)
  7. Lydia Jacoby – 57.03 (2023)
  8. Mona McSharry – 57.16 (2023)
  9. Breeja Larson – 57.23 (2014)
  10. Alia Atkinson – 57.29 (2014)


  • NCAA Record: 55.73, Lilly King (Indiana) – 2019
  • Meet Record: 55.73, Lilly King (Indiana) – 2019
  • American Record: 55.73, Lilly King (Indiana) – 2019
  • US Open Record: 55.73, Lilly King (Indiana) – 2019
  • Pool Record: 56.64, Molly Hannis (Tennessee) – 2017
  • 2022 Champion: Kaitlyn Dobler (USC) – 56.93

Top 8:

  1. Lydia Jacoby (Texas) – 57.03
  2. Mona McSharry (Tennessee) – 57.16
  3. Anna Elendt (Texas) – 57.29
  4. Kaitlyn Dobler (USC) – 57.50
  5. Heather MacCausland (NC State) – 57.74
  6. Hannah Bach (Ohio State) – 58.08
  7. Josie Panitz (Ohio State) – 58.12
  8. Emma Weber (Virginia) – 58.95

Defending champion Kaitlyn Dobler of USC took fourth (57.50) behind Elendt (57.29). Dobler was off her season best of 56.94 that she swam midseason.

Heather MacCausland has made big strides this season, and she showed that off here with a fifth-place finish in 57.74. She came into the meet with a personal best of 58.16, then lowered it to 58.14 in prelims before going her first sub-58 time here in finals. Over the course of the day, the senior has taken another .42 seconds off her lifetime best.

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K Chilly
5 days ago

Amazing swim! It feels like she drops almost every time she touches the water. It always feels scary to watch a promising young swimmer go through a major culture/lifestyle/life change and she went from a mostly unknown swimmer in Alaska to Olympic gold medalist training in a college program. For her to be improving so much and steadily from meet to meet has me excited for her future years and long course potential.

6 days ago

Lydia’s skills are remarkably inconsistent, incongruent and incompatable. She is very weak in some aspects of the sport, and so briliantly excellent in others.

And remarkably, she has summed those parts into an Olympic Gold Medal and an NCAA Championship, in the sprinting, springing, power based 100 M/Y distance events of her stroke

In this age of underwater swimming, where in so many cases the starts and walls have become overwhelmingly important,especially in Short Course, Lydia is seductively soft and singularly unimpressive on the walls.

On the SWIM portion, she is crushingly, definitivey, breathtakingly overpowering. She should be the lead heroine of every LCM loving, SCY hating swim fan out there.

I’d love to see a race analysis on… Read more »

Reply to  dscott
5 days ago

Went back and watched the video of tonight’s race.

From my view, Lydia was 4th when everyone came up and began swimming on the last lap, with about 12 yds. left.

Yet she was the clear winner at the end.

6 days ago

Hook Em Lydia!

6 days ago

I forgot how insanely fast Lilly King’s time is

About Riley Overend

Riley is an associate editor interested in the stories taking place outside of the pool just as much as the drama between the lane lines. A 2019 graduate of Boston College, he arrived at SwimSwam in April of 2022 after three years as a sports reporter and sports editor at newspapers …

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