|By Swimming World High School Interns Alana Basil, Valerie Podeliski and Gabrielle Drillich
PISCATAWAY, New Jersey, January 15. THE second night of long course racing concludes in the fast Rutgers University pool.
Women Open 400 LC Meter IM
Kristine Ng was today's winner in the women's 400 meter IM. She is a member of the Scarlet Aquatic Club team from New Jersey, and has positioned herself to compete in the 2011 national championship. Ng finished the race with a final time of 4:59.83. Coming in second place from the Lakeland Hills YMCA in New Jersey was Abby Fisher. Fisher finished the race with a time of 5:01.64. She was able to drop eight seconds. Fisher was also able to qualify for the 2011 national championship. Another qualifier for the 2011 national championship was Rachel Kessler, who finished third. Kessler is a member of the Badger Swim Club, and finished the race with a time of 5:01.97. She was able to drop more than a second off her prelim time.
Men's Open 400 Meter IM
With a time of 4:36.12, Pat Myers of Bluefish Swim Club won the men's 400 IM. What started out as a close race ended in a satisfying finish for Myers, who beat out the rest of his competitors by more than three seconds. Myers not only had a great race, but he also made the junior national cut. In second was Sean Sullivan from Long Island Aquatic Club with a time of 4:39.84, qualifying for Scholastic All-American. Sullivan started out first in fly, but lost the lead in the back to Myers. Third place was Christian Yeager, also from Long Island Aquatic Club, who finished with a time of 4:40.75. Like Sullivan, Yeager also made the Scholastic All-American qualifying cut. Yeager had a strong breaststroke, but in the end Myers had an amazing freestyle.
Women Open 50 LC Meter Freestyle
In an intense one-lap race to the finish, Blake Zieger from Bluefish Swim Club won the event with a 26.98, qualifying for junior nationals and swimming 0.28 seconds faster than her preliminary time. Coming in second was Meagan Dollard from Germantown Academy Aquatic Club with a time of 27.28. Bianca Spinazzola, also of Bluefish Swim Club, captured third with a time of 27.62. Both Meagan and Bianca qualified for the Scholastic All-American Team.
Men Open 50 LC Meter Freestyle
In the Men's 50 freestyle, Michael Smit, a member of the Hydroquatics swimming team, placed first. His end time was 24.32, which qualified him for the SAAT, or the Scholastic All-American meet. Coming in second place was Nicolas Fink from the Cougar Aquatic Team located in New Jersey. Fink's time of 24.48 also qualified him to compete in SAAT, along with third place winner, Daniel Gosek. Gosek represents the Eastern Express and finished the race with a time of 24.50.
Women's Open 100 Meter Backstroke
The women's 100 backstroke was an exciting race that culminated with a win for Rachel Zilinskas from Germantown Aquatic Club with a time of 1:05.50. Zilinskas not only won the race, but she also got a junior national time, the only one in the event. Finishing second was Courtney Ciardiello from Badger Swim Club with a time of 1:06.39. Ciardiello was in lane seven, which in turn surprised the spectators when she came in second. In third place was Danielle Romain from Cougar Aquatic Team, who finished with a time of 1:06.57. Both Ciardiello and Romain's times qualified them for the Scholastic All-American time cut.
Men Open 100 LC Meter Backstroke
The race was close, but Pat Myers of Bluefish Swim Club pulled ahead to win the race in the final 25 meters with a time of 58.10. He swam half a second faster than his preliminary time and qualified for nationals. This was Meyers' second win of the night after winning the 400 IM. "I'm pretty happy," he said. "Having the 50 free in between two other races without a lot of rest was tough, but I did pretty good." Coming in second was Luke Papendick of Lakeland Hills YMCA with a time of 58.42, swimming two seconds faster than his preliminary time. Michael Strand of Elite Swim Club placed third with a time of 58.42. Both Papendick and Strand qualified for junior nationals.
Women Open 400 LC Meter Freestyle Senior
Placing first -- and gaining her second win of the night -- was Zilinskas with a final time of 4:20.85. She dropped about 8.07 from her prelim time and now has qualified herself for a spot at junior nationals. Lauren Morford from the Hydroquatics came in second place with a time of 4:21.44. Kelly Johanson came in a close third with a final time of 4:22.67. Both Morford and Johanson qualified for the junior national competition. After the race Johanson commented, "I thought the race went really well. I went out there to improve my time from last year." Johanson also stated that her team, the Badgers, held double practices every day in order to prepare for today's meet. "I think they helped the most," she said.
Men's Open 400 Meter Freestyle
After a neck-and-neck race between Arthur Frayler and Michael Smit, Frayler won with a time of 4:02.73. Smit lead the way through the first 200 meters, and then Frayler picked up on the second half of the race. Though both men alternated with the lead, Frayler won with about a second and a half lead over Smit. Frayler, from Germantown Academy Aquatic Club, and Smit, from Hydroaquatics, both made junior national cuts. In third, also from Germantown Academy Aquatic Club, was Jimmy McEldrew with a time of 4:10.05, who qualified for Zones.
Women Open 400 LC Meter Medley Relay
While the relay began as a close race, the girls from the Badger Swim Club took the lead and secured first place in the final two relay legs. The relay team consisted of Elizabeth Schauer, Melissa Fulenwider, Courtney Ciardiello and Kelly Johanson. The girls agreed that "[We] are very excited about the win."
Said Badger coach Tim Tully: "Our girls have been on fire this whole meet. We've produced two winning relays so far, and were hoping to go 3-for-3 tomorrow."
The Germantown Academy Aquatic Club relay placed second with a time of 4:27.86. Team members included Rachel Zilinskas, Madeline Maher, Bridget Casey and Meagan Dollard. The Cougar Aquatic relay team of Danielle Romain, Dierdre Esposito, Rebecca Butler and Lauren Buckworth placed third, swimming a time of 4:31.98. All three relay teams qualified for Eastern Zones.
Men Open 400 LC Meter Medley Relay Senior
In today's 400 medley relay it was lane against lane, team against team. The Long Island Aquatic Club, occupying lane 2, started out strong and led the other teams across the pool. However, the other Long Island Aquatic Club in lane 3, dominated the butterfly and brought their team in first. The Somerset Valley YMCA team was close behind in lane 6. The Long Island team in lane 3 was able to hold their stamina and place first in 4:02.89, which qualifies them to compete in the upcoming sectionals. Teammates Christian Yeager, Matt Goetz, Jake Goldstein and Austin Kowalsky commented that "We just were going for it, and in the end it was all team mentality." Finishing the race in second and third were Bluefish Swim Club (Pat Myers, Joshua Zimmt, Louis Arruda and Luca Spinazzola) with a time of 4:05.22, and Somerset Valley YMCA (Victor Luo, Sean Johnson, Brian Barr and David Chung) with a time of 4:05.55. Both teams also qualified for sectionals.