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US World Champs Trials, Day 4: No Surprises in the Women's 200 Fly as Descenza and Mason Take Top Spots -- April 4, 2005

By Phillip Whitten
Photos by Peter Bick

INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana, April 4. THE women’s 200 fly presented some intriguing possibilities. Veterans Mary Descenza, Athens Bulldogs , and Emily Mason, University of Arizona, were the favorites. But a trio of hungry youngsters – 14 year-old Courtney Kalisz, 16 year-old Elaine Breeden, and 19 year-old Elizabeth Hill -- were nipping at their heels. Slightly older, but just as hungry, were Kim Vandenberg, Whitney Myers and Demerae Christianson.

Descenza, however, quickly dashed her challengers’ hopes, taking a commanding lead on the first lap and lengthening it by the halfway mark. At 100 meters, only Mason remained to contest the top spot, with Descenza turning in 1:01.28 to Mason’s 1:01.91. Vandenberg and Kalisz followed about a second behind Mason.

The third lap saw the two leaders lengthen their margin. Breeden had the strongest final 50 meters as she moved from fifth to third (2:11.60), but it was the two favorites -- Descenza (2:09.00) and Mason (2:10.50) -- who took the top spots and assured themselves of tickets to Montreal.

Mary DeScenza qualifies first in 200 Fly