|By John Lohn
OMAHA, Nebraska, July 3. ELAINE Breeden picked one heck of a time to deliver the finest meet of her career. Already qualified for the Olympic Games in the 100 butterfly, Breeden stormed away from the field in the 200 fly, taking top honors in 2:06.75. The time bettered Breeden's meet record from the semifinal round.
Breeden wasted no time taking the lead, as she split 28.40 for the first lap. She touched in 1:00.18 at the 100, then held it together during the final two laps. Breeden, a Stanford University standout, was followed in second place by Kathleen Hersey, the reigning Pan American Games champion. Hersey earned her Olympic nod with a time of 2:07.33.
One of the favorites in the event, Kim Vandenberg was the third-place finisher. The silver medalist at last year's World Championships, Vandenberg was timed in 2:08.48. She is, however, headed to Beijing as a member of the 800 freestyle relay. Fourth place went to veteran Mary DeScenza with a time of 2:09.23.
"It was a relief to make the team in the 100," Breeden said. "Training at Stanford has been incredible. I just wanted to take control at the beginning and pray through the last 25."
The fifth-place finisher was Tanya Krisman (2:09.47) and the sixth slot was occupied by Katie Carroll in a time of 2:10.33. Lyndsay DePaul was next in 2:11.20 and Leah Gingrich grabbed eighth in 2:11.21.
Video Footage Removed Due to NBC Restrictions
Go to Swimming World's 2008 Olympics Landing Page for the most comprehensive coverage of the meet on the Internet.
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Photo By: Peter H. Bick