2019 WORLD UNIVERSITY GAMES/SUMMER UNIVERSIADE – SWIMMING
- July 4th-10th, 2019
- Napoli, Italy
- LCM (50m)
- Live Stream: Olympic Channel (in US), Rai Sport (in Italy)
- Entry Lists & Live Results
American coaches will use John Shebat as the butterfly leg on their 400 medley relay, in spite of him not being selected to the team individually in the 100 fly.
Relay lineups for finals have been released, and the Americans will use:
3 of those legs were predictable: Ress, Finnerty, and Apple were all the top-finishing Americans in the 100m individual events. The 100 fly was not so clear cut. While Americans Coleman Stewart (52.11) and Jack Saunderson (52.25) were 3rd and 4th, respectively, in the individual 100 fly, Shebat reportedly swam a 51.4 in a time trial this week (no social media photos or videos of this one). Shebat, you’ll recall, swam a 200 IM time trial in a 1:58-low after being disqualified in prelims of the individual event: which was expected to be his only race of the meet.
In prelims, Saunderson split 51.99 on a rolling start – still half-a-second behind Shebat’s flat start. Stewart, meanwhile, swam backstroke on the prelims relay, so if the Americans do medal, both butterfliers will get some hardware regardless.
Stewart’s coach at NC State, Braden Holloway, is the head coach of the US men at this meet, while Shebat’s coach, Wyatt Collins, is also on the staff.
This means that Cal swimmer Bryce Mefford, who also has a coach on staff (Chase Kreitler), won’t get a shot at this medley relay. He finished 5th in the individual event in 54.42; Stewart was a 53.85 in prelims, so results indicate that this decision did, in fact, make the prelims relay faster (though it would have finaled comfortably in either case).
Shebat is generally best known as a backstroker in short course – he was the 2019 NCAA Champion in the 200 back for Texas. He’s also a very good butterflier though, in both long course and short course. His official best time of 52.42 in the 100 fly (in prelims, followed by a 52.46 in finals) was good for 11th place at last year’s US National Championships. He also swam the fly leg on Texas’ medley relay at the NCAA Championships last year.
Meanwhile, the American women will use:
- Katherine Berkoff – Backstroke
- Emily Escobedo – Breaststroke
- Dakota Luther – Butterfly
- Gabby DeLoof – Freestyle
None of those switches were any big surprise, though that means Emily Weiss, the only American to make the individual event final (1:09.10 – 8th place), won’t get a shot at finals. Escobedo also swam in prelims where she split 1:06.78 – several seconds faster than either American raced in the individual.
The Americans had the fastest times in prelims of both relays (the women by a substantial amount). The only real challenge in these finals will be the Russian men for the American men: they swapped out their first 3 legs, including adding Grigory Tarasevich on the backstroke leg and 200 breaststroke World Championship medalist Kirill Prigoda to their relay.