West Virginia’s Trayton Saladin Hits Olympic Trials Cut in 100 Fly in Geneva


When West Virginia University announced the pending construction of a new $15 million 50-meter indoor aquatic facility on campus, head coach Vic Riggs called it a “game-changer,” and fawned at the opportunity to finally give his swimmers a true long course training facility that the school has never had before.

“We’ve talked with the kids and I’ve talked with the staff about this,” Riggs said in 2017 when the project was revealed. “They’re not building this for us to be where we are right now. We need to go in there and produce at the highest level. It affects everything from just walking into your facility, to morale all the way up to being able to compete in a first-rate facility.

“You can’t hide bad strokes long course; it just doesn’t work,” he added.

While construction of that new facility is in its final stages, and its expected to be open by the time school returns this fall, the Mountaineers have already found ways to make leaps in long course, specifically in the form of rising senior Trayton Saladin, who on Friday at the Geneva Futures Championships swam a 54.17 to mark his first Olympic Trials standard. That slid .02 seconds under the requisite standard to qualify for Omaha.

His previous best time coming into the meet was a 55.28, which qualified him for Winter Nationals but no further. He was the only new Trials qualifier (barring relay leadoffs – splits were not available as of posting) on the day in Geneva.

Finishing in 2nd place in that race was 27-year old Matthew Salig in 54.47. While that was a lifetime best for the former Penn State Nittany Lion, and was a US Nationals cut, it was just short of the Trials cut of 54.19.

While Saladin was the only new Trials cut of the day, his was not the only headlining swim: UNC Wilmington’s Gianmichel D’Alessandro won the men’s 100 breaststroke in 1:03.80. That swim obliterated his old best time of 1:06.04 that was set in 2017. His best time is a 54.28 in yards, and he only dropped a few tenths during the NCAA season, making his big result in the 100 breaststroke even more surprising.

On the women’s side, the highlight was a 4:55.23 in the 400 IM from Duquesne rising senior Emma Brinton. Her best time coming into the meet was 5:02.53 from June of this year. Already one of the most accomplished swimmers in Duquesne program history, she is the two-time defending Atlantic 10 Conference champion in the 400 yard IM, and the conference record holder in the event.

Other Day 2 Winners:

  • Quinn Scannell of Duke won the women’s 200 free in 2:02.73, which is about half-a-second short of her lifetime best that was set 2 weeks ago. 2 of her Duke teammates, Alyssa Marsh and Kylie Jordan, hit their Olympic Trials cuts in the 100 fly on Friday at Nationals in California.
  • US Naval Academy swimmer Daniel Cook won the men’s 200 free in 1:52.02, followed by Ohio State commit Jay Johnson in 1:52.54. Both swimmers broke Cook’s old Pool Record that was set in prelims. Johnson is an Ohio state champion in the 100 yard free.
  • The first under-18 winner of the meet was Josephine Panitz in the women’s 100 breaststroke. She swam a 1:11.87, which improves her old best time from last summer of 1:12.43.
  • Northwestern rising sophomore Jasmine Hellmer won the women’s 100 fly in 1:01.46, which is about 8-tenths slower than her best time. 17-year old Gabrielle Brust took 2nd in 1:01.99, which was a full second faster than her  best time coming into the meet.
  • Nathan Holty won the men’s 400 IM in 4:27.95 to break his own Pool Record from prelims. That’s nearly 5 seconds faster than he had ever been coming into the meet – his previous best was a 4:32.91 from June. He swims for the Dayton Raiders and has not publicly committed in the high school class of 2020. This swim, combined with a 1:54.2 relay split on Thursday, should increase his recruiting stock dramatically as the fall signing season quickly approaches.

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About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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