Transfer Aislin Holder (Akron) Joins 52-Point Club in the 100 Fly at NICs Day 2

2024 NATIONAL INVITATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS

Day 2 of the 2024 National Invitational Championships, a season-ending meet primarily designed for swimmers who didn’t qualify for the NCAA Championships, heated up, with six new Meet Records falling and a number of best times going in the books as swimmers finish their season on a high note in Florida.

Team Scores After Day 2

Women’s top 5:

  1. Akron – 400
  2. TCU – 365.5
  3. Kentucky – 341.5
  4. Queens – 293
  5. UCSD – 292

Men’s top 5:

  1. TCU – 495
  2. Queens – 472
  3. Oakland – 382.5
  4. Grand Canyon – 311
  5. Kentucky – 303.5

For full team scores, click “Day 2 results” above.

The Akron women took control of the meet on Friday, even without winning a relay, thanks to a new lifetime best in the 100 fly from Aislinn Holder. She was out like a rocket, splitting 24.64 at the turn, and held off a big closing 50 from Grand Canyon’s Paula Martinez (53.07) for the win. Holder finished in 52.99. That’s almost half-a-second better than she was at the MAC Championships two weeks ago, where she swam a best time of 53.46.

Last season, as a sophomore at Indiana, Holder struggled. Her season-best was 55.16, slower than the 54.64 that she went as a freshman. She is back on track now, though, and becomes the 7th woman in the proud butterfly history of Brian Peresie’s Akron program to break 53 seconds in the 100 fly.

That was the Zips’ only win of the day, but their depth still managed to stretch their lead to 34.5 points heading into Saturday’s conclusion.

Another MAC swimmer, Madeline Padavic from Miami (Ohio), picked up her second win of the meet, topping the 50 backstroke field in 52.44. That’s her best time by .43 seconds. That would have won the conference title if it were two weeks earlier – where Padavic placed 4th. Maddy Gatrall, the conference champion and conference leader with a 52.10, isn’t racing this week as she’s preparing for the NCAA Championships next week.

There was an upset in the women’s 100 breaststroke final, where FIU’s Emma Becker swam a new Meet Record the top seed Danielle Melilli of Queens 1:00.13-1:0049.

Becker’s swim broke the NIC Record of 1:00.51 set by Indiana’s Abigail Kirkpatrick in 2019.

Becker didn’t race the 100 breast at the AAC Championships in February, and her previous best time was a 1:01.58 from the mid-season Mizzou Invitational. The difference here was her opening 50 – she raced aggressively, splitting 28.20 on the opening, which accounts for most of the 1.4 second improvement she made. That kept pace with the speedy Melilli, and then Becker used her 200 breast training to come home in 31.93 and capture the victory.

On the men’s side, meanwhile, TCU continued to hold-off Queens, including a big opening relay win in 1:25.01. For the Horned Frogs, that’s within .08 seconds of their winning time from Big 12s. Nigel Forbes, who won the 50 back on Thursday, was the key leg there – his opening split of 21.44 was not only a season-best, but it was faster than the opening split of Edgar Cicani (21.48) at the Big 12 Championships.

It was a back-and-forth day for the two leading men’s teams. Queens followed that relay with a win from Frantisek Jablcnik in the 400 IM (3:47.22), closing the gap on the Horned Frogs, but Piotr Sadlowski won the 100 fly in 46.75, breaking the Meet Record, as part of 1 -3-10 finish for TCU. That negated the Queens results in the 400 IM.

Other Winners/Highlights

  • Asia Kozan of UCSD, who as a freshman this season won the 200 free and 200 fly titles at the MPSF Championships, hasn’t swum the 400 IM much for the Tritons, though she was very good at the event in high school. She won the event on Friday pretty-comfortably in 4:11.85.
  • Miami (Ohio)’s Greta Kolbeck won the 200 free in 1:46.51, whih is her best time by .34 seconds.
  • After dominating one middle-distance race, the 500 free, on Thursday, Kentucky won another, the 800 free relay, on Friday. There they swam 7:15.22, with anchor Caroline Benda holding off a fast-charging Akron anchor leg from Rebecca Reid (1:46.97) for the win. Reid entered the water with more than a four-second deficit, but managed to pull her team within half-a-second to place 2nd in 7:15.74. UCSD was 3rd in 7:15.76.
  • The TCU women won the 200 medley relay in a Meet Record of 1:37.94, within half-a-second of what they swam at Big 12s. That was about six-tenths better than the runners-up from Akron (1:38.53) and 1.2 better than UCSD (1:39.17) who were also under Akron’s old Meet Record.
  • Later in the session, the Grand Canyon men got involved in a big way. Alex Volkov won the 100 back by more than a second in 45.67 ahead of the aforementioned Cicani from TCU (46.85). Volkov tied the Meet Record set by Queens’ Alex Bauch in 2023.
  • In the next race, Grand Canyon won the 800 free relay in 6:26.81, including a 1:35.75 split on a rolling start from Vitaly Kostin.
  • UCSD’s Andrija Petkovic won the individual 200 free in 1:35.05, a new lifetime best for him. He was 1:35.67 at the team’s conference championship meet. He swam his best times of last season at the NIC meet as well, placing 3rd in 1:35.49. Curiously, he didn’t swim on UCSD’s 800 free relay at the end of the session, where the offered six second improvement could have been worth 5-or-6 points to his team.
  • Oakland 5th-year Christian Bart won the 100 breaststroke in 52.31, which broke Logan Kelly’s 2023 Meet Record of 52.60. TCU’s Guilherme Camossato was 2nd in 52.51, also under the former Meet Record.

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Daddy Foster
2 months ago

She’s jacked

ArtVanDeLegh10
2 months ago

Aislinn has two ‘N’s in it

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