Illinois Winter Championships
- Thursday, March 18 – Sunday, March 21, 2021
- FMC Natatorium
- Westmont, Illinois
- Short Course Yards (SCY)
- Meet Page
- Psych Sheets
While the NCSA operating at a reduced capacity over the past few months, a number of racing opportunities have recently popped up throughout the country including one hosted by National’s Capital this coming weekend and the Illinois Winter Championships to be held this week in Westmont, Illinois. Many of Illinois’ top swimmers will get together at the brand new aquatic facility the FMC Natatorium.
Among those racing this week will be high school junior Carly Novelinne. Novelinne placed #13 of SwimSwam’s Way Too Early List of HS Recruits of 2022. Since then, Novelline has committed to join the University of Virginia in the fall of 2022.
Swimming for NASA Wildcat Aquatics, Novelline will go in as top seed in the 50 freestyle (22.46), 100 freestyle (48.92), 100 backstroke (53.02), and 200 backstroke (1:57.87). Back in 2019, Novelline won the Illinois HS State Championship in the 100 backstroke with a 53.92 and took silver in the 100 free in a 49.38.
Another Virginia commit swimming this weekend will be Connor Boyle from FMC Aquatics. Boyle will join the Virginia men’s team this upcoming fall, having been ranked #14 in our rankings for the class of 2021.
Boyle’s has been one of Illinois’s leading high school sprinters over the past few years and is the fastest entrant in both the 50 and 100 freestyles. While he’s entered with a 20.01 in the 50, he’s actually been as fast as a 19.80, having broken the 20-second mark for the first time last week. In the 100, Boyle goes in with a 43.82 but hit a 43.68 last week as well.
Boyle’s FMC Aquatic teammate McKenna Stone will also be present at the meet, entered as top seed in the 100 butterfly with a 53.04 and the 200 IM with a 2:00.75. Like Novelline and Boyle, Stone will join one of the nation’s top programs in the fall having committed to swim for Cal next fall.
Another swimmer who’s getting ready to join a top-tier NCAA squad that we’ll get to see this week in Illinois is #18 ranked in the class of 2021, Rachel Stege from FMC Aquatics. Stege committed to swim for Georgia beginning next fall.
Stege will go into the meet as the quickest 200 and 500 freestylers with a 1:46.40 and 4:40.03, respectively. She’ll also be in the mix in the 100 freestyle where she’s entered with a 50.22 for third behind Novelline’s 48.82, McKenna Stone‘s 49.50, and Katherine Morris’s 49.92.
One non-high school swimmer that tops the psych sheets in a number of events is Princeton’s Raunak Khosla. Khosla swam as a sophomore last season for Princeton but the Ivey League made the decision this year to cancel all fall and winter sports which includes swimming. Khosla is seeded first in a number of events at the meet this weekend.
Khosla Top Seeds
- Men’s 100 Butterfly – 46.87
- Men’s 200 Butterfly – 1:42.05
- Men’s 200 Breaststroke – 1:56.00
- Men’s 200 IM – 1:42.80
- Men’s 400 IM – 3:41.75
Also representing swimming at the meet from Princeton will be John Ehling in the 200 freestyle, 500 freestyle, and 200 IM. Teammate Peyton Werner will race the 100 free, 200 free, 500 free, 200 IM, and 400 IM.
Other Notable Top Seeds
- Trent Frandson – Men’s 200 Freestyle (1:35.68) / 500 Freestyle (4:20.40)
- Kaelyn Gridley – Women’s 100 Breaststroke (1:00.89) / 200 Breaststroke (2:13.04)
- Max Iida – Men’s 100 Breaststroke (54.62)
- Payton Baxter – 400 IM (4:23.38)
- Greta Pelzek – Women’s 200 Fly (2:00.15)
- Aleksej Filipovic – Men’s 100 Backstroke (48.36)
- Michael Benington – Men’s 200 Backstroke (1:48.73)