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SANTA CLARA, California, June 21. IT was a bit of an Elizabeth Beisel blastoff tonight in the women’s 400-meter IM as she dusted the field at the Arena Grand Prix in Santa Clara.
After initially trailing after butterfly, Beisel’s dominant backstroke took her into the lead and she never looked back as she dropped a blazing 4:33.52 on the field. That swim shot her to fourth in the world rankings behind only Ye Shiwen (4:30.84), Mireia Belmonte (4:32.92) and Hannah Miley (4:33.25). Beisel had been ranked 14th in the world with a 4:39.68. Her time tonight crushed her in-season best of 4:36.75 set here at Santa Clara back in 2008.
NBAC’s Becca Mann raced to second in 4:39.78 to take 16th in the world rankings, while California’s Caitlin Leverenz finished third in 4:43.05.
A&M’s Sarah Henry (4:43.32), Madisyn Cox (4:46.25), Erika Seltenreich-Hodgson (4:46.83), NOVA’s Emma Nunn (4:50.78), Theresa Michalak (4:50.78) and Gators’ Andreina Pinto (4:52.54) also battled in the championship heat.
Pleasanton’s Celina Li had just enough of a lead to hold off a hard-charging Emily Overholt in the B final, 4:48.67 to 4:48.93. NBAC’s Annie Zhu finished second in the consolation heat with a 4:50.92.
Bruins’ Noelle Tarazona (4:53.45), GCAT’s Caty Hulsey (4:53.68), UCSC’s Tianna Rissling (4:53.81), California’s Kelly Naze (4:54.84), Chenoa Devine (4:55.02) and Mexico’s Natalia Jaspeado Becerra (4:55.15) also performed in the B final.