By David Rieder
Courtesy of: Peter H. Bick
Courtesy of: Peter H. Bick
GREENSBORO, North Carolina, December 13. TWO meet records fell during day two's prelims at the Speedo Winter Junior National Championships, but the big story coming out of the Greensboro Aquatic Center was Caeleb Dressel going to the emergency room with what Bolles coach Sergio Lopez described as lung problems. Dressel's status for the evening's finals is currently unknown.
Women's 200 medley relay
SwimMAC Carolina, fresh off a 1-2 finish in Thursday's 200 free relay, finished first and third in prelims. Listed as the "B" team, Heather Merritt, Caitlin Casazza, Alyssa Marsh, and Jessica Merritt qualified as the top seed in 1:41.39, while Nora McCullagh, Maija Roses, Elsa Welshofer, and Lauren Rhodes put up a 1:41.84. Palo Alto Stanford split the difference with a second seeded 1:41.55, while Academy Bullets grabbed fourth in 1:41.87.
Abbey Weitzeil, the winner of the 50 free on Thursday, anchored Canyons' relay in a blistering 21.93, and her team qualified fifth in 1:41.89. King (1:42.00), Dynamo (1:42.01), and Carmel (1:42.32) will swim in the final in the evening.
Men's 200 medley relay
Curtis Ogren won the men's 200 IM last night, and his 24.81 breast split helped Palo Alto Stanford grab the top seed for the relay with a 1:29.97. They edged the Caeleb Dressel-led Bolles squad, who finished one one-hundredth behind in 1:29.98. Dressel split a 20.70 on his fly split. Scottdale (1:31.60), Tide (1:31.67), Dynamo (1:32.18), Upper Dublin (1:32.46), Bolles' "B" team (1:32.54), and King (1:32.61) all made the final.
Women's 400 IM
Socal's Ella Eastin comfortably paced the women's 400 IM, winning the penultimate heat in 4:13.48 for the top overall seed. Eastin finished more than a second and a half ahead of Mount Pleasant's Megan Kingsley, who came in at 4:15.09 for second. Triangle's Hannah Moore finished third in 4:15.55, and Y-Spartaquatics' Savanna Faulconer took fourth in 4:15.86 as a pair of South Carolina natives will swim next to each other in the evening.
Ozaukee's Katherine Drabot qualified fifth in 4:16.21, and she will be joined in the final by SwimMAC Carolina's Nicole Emery (4:17.17), Denver Hilltopers' Haley Rowley (4:17.75), and Jenison Area's Madeline Myers (4:17.91). Top-seeded Kylie Stewart was a declared false start.
Men's 400 IM
Baylor's Sam McHugh earned his second top seed in two days as he paced prelims of the most grueling event on the men's side. He will try to maintain that seed in finals after falling to a disappointing seventh in the 500 free. McHugh finished in 3:49.83, the only sub-3:50 performance of the day and almost a second clear of the second seed. Dayton Raiders' Brock Turner earned that spot, clocking 3:50.74, while top-seeded Curtis Ogren picked up third while representing Palo Alto Stanford. Ogren picked up a win and a new meet record in the 200 IM on Thursday.
Dynamo's Jay Litherland qualified fourth in 3:52.23, while brother Kevin will swim next to him in the final after qualifying sixth in 3:53.48, while their teammate Gunnar Bentz picked up seventh in 3:53.64. North Texas Nadadores' Jonathan Roberts ended up fifth in 3:52.28, while Phoenix's Brian Poon rounded out the qualifiers with a 3:53.77.
Women's 100 fly
Mankato's Danielle Nack touched out Swim Atlanta's Kaitlin Grover for win in the final heat, 53.47 to 53.49, claiming the top overall seed for the final in the process. SwimMAC's Elsa Welshofer came in just behind at 53.55 for third, and Orange County Waves' Lindsey Engel finished fourth in 53.65.
Just more than a half second separated the top eight seeds. Caitlin Casazza won the penultimate heat in 53.66, just beating out Mount Pleasant's Megan Kingsley. Kingsley clocked 53.69 shortly after qualifying second in the 400 IM. Livonia's Miranda Tucker (53.95) and Kingfish's Madison Wright (53.99) will bracket the championship field.
Men's 100 fly
Bolles' Caeleb Dressel comfortably qualified first after entering as the top seed as he goes for his second win of the meet. He earlier blasted an 18.94 in the 50 free as the leadoff leg of Bolles' 200 free relay before winning the event in the final. Still, Dressel's participation in the final could be up in the air after he ended up in the emergency room following the swim. Palo Alto Stanford's Andrew Liang finished seven tenths back in second at 48.21, while Redlands' Kyle Gornay picked up the third seed in 48.33.
Island's Michael Andrew took down his own 13-14 National Age Group record in the event. He clocked 48.40 to beat out his old mark of 48.78. Upper St Clair's Ryan Dudzinski (48.53), Scottsdale's Ryan Hoffer (48.57), Splash's Paul Powers (48.60), and Bolles' Javier Barrena (48.62) will also compete in the championship heat this evening.
Women's 200 free
A pair of 15 year olds each recorded personal bests by large margins to claim the top two spots headed into the final. City of Mobile's Paige Madden dropped almost two seconds to finish first in 1:46.59, while Carmel's Claire Adams knocked off a second and a half to earn lane five with her 1:46.62. Ozaukee's Katherine Drabot came in next at 1:46.72, followed by the 1:46.81 of Patriot's Erin Falconer.
Loveland's Eryn Eddy (1:46.81), SwimMAC Carolina's Nora McCullagh (1:46.94), Area Tallahassee's Cecilia Williams (1:47.01), and Hershey's Meghan Raab (1:47.23) all made the final, while the top seed, Dynamo's Kylie Stewart, outside of the field with her 1:47.51. Stewart tied with Rockwood's Jordan Stout for ninth.
Men's 200 free
Trojan's Dylan Carter blasted his own meet record in qualifying first for the final of the 200 free. Carter will enter the finale as a heavy favorite to win after he touched in 1:34.47, more than three second ahead of anyone else. He previously clocked 1:35.29 a year ago for the old meet record. Carter's road to the title will be easier, however, with the absence of Bolles' Caeleb Dressel, who did not swim in the event in prelims after his reported lung issues. Dynamo's Gunnar Bentz was another notable absence.
Palm Harbor's Tristan Saunders came in second at 1:37.81, while Duneland's Blake Pieroni came in third at 1:38.11. Bolles' Josh Booth finished just behind in fourth in 1:38.41. Azura Florida's Joshua Romany (1:38.41), Michigan Lakeshore's Tabahn Afrik (1:38.42), Aces' Jake Markham (1:38.46), and East Carolina's Phillip Perdue (1:38.56) round out the top eight.
Women's 100 breast
Atlantis' Lindsey Horejsi took down both the meet record and the 15-16 National Age Group record in the event with a 59.75 in prelims. The previous meet record had been set in 2010 when Mary Olson swam a 59.81. Newburgh Sea Creatures' Lillia King qualified second in 1:00.27 to lead a trio of swims in the 1:00-range. Lakeside's Kennedy Lohman (1:00.51) and Walnut Creek's Heidi Poppe (1:00.88) came in next, while Hershey's Vivian Tafuto (1:01.31), Livonia's Miranda Tucker (1:01.71), YMCA of the Triangle Area's Olivia Ontjes (1:01.89), and Samantha Senczyszyn (1:02.05) advanced to the championship final.
Men's 100 breast
Tide's Austin Temple edged Palo Alto Stanford's Curtis Ogren in the final heat of prelims to earn the top seed, 54.81 to 54.96. Somerset Valley's Zack Warner came in third at 55.17, while Pine Crest's Jordy Groters (55.33), Counsilman Center's Ian Finnerty (55.47), Azura Florida's Alexander Morgan (55.55), Avon Community's Christian Lorenz (55.62), and Palo Alto Stanford's Joseph Kmak (55.63) rounded out the top eight.
Women's 100 back
AK Sharks' Clara Smiddy paced the field in the women's 100 back, qualifying first in 52.60. She will have a chance in the final to chase Courtney Bartholomew's meet record of 52.22 from 2009 in tonight's final. Smiddy, who swept both backstroke events at the Summer Junior Nationals, will have a half-second cushion headed into finals as Palo Alto Stanford's Ally Howe took second in 53.18, and Byron Center's Taylor Garcia qualified third in 53.21. Dynamo's Kylie Stewart picked up the fourth seed in 53.38.
Carmel's Claire Adams (53.43), Socal's Emily Eastin (53.88), Missoula'a Hannah Leach (53.89), and Spokane Waves' Emma Schanz (53.96) also qualified among the top eight.
Men's 100 back
Trojan's Dylan Carter gave himself a shot at a second title in the evening's finals. He qualified first for the 100 back, while Upper St Clair's Ryan Dudzinski finished 47.92 to lead a tight back of seven men under 48 and within two tenths of a second. Roadrunner's Brock Bonetti (47.93), Palm Harbor's Tristan Sanders (47.94), Splash's Paul Powers (47.95), Denver Swim Association's Hennessey Stuart (47.98), Carpet Capital's Ethan Young (47.99), and Upper Dublin's Michael Thomas (48.27) all earned championship final berths.
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