By John Lohn
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind., March 30. THE chances that some familiar faces will represent the United States in the butterfly events at this summer’s World Championships are fairly strong. After all, three reigning Olympians are expected to battle it out this week, when Trials are held in Indianapolis.
For starters, Kaitlin Sandeno and Dana Kirk are seeking return trips to the international stage in the 200 distance. Meanwhile, Rachel Komisarz was an Athens participant in the 100 fly. The only missing member of the Athens squad is Jenny Thompson, the now retired legend.
Last summer, Kirk and Komisarz qualified for the semifinals of their events, with Kirk finishing ninth, one shot sly of a bid to the finals. Sandeno, however, managed a spot in the championship heat and finished fourth in the 200 fly, only .14 out of the bronze medal.
While the aforementioned triumvirate may have Olympic experience in this stroke, count on some pressure being delivered, most notably from Mary DeScenza and Dana Vollmer. At last summer’s Olympic Trials, DeScenza finished seventh in the 100 fly and fourth in the 200 fly. But, she’s coming off NCAA titles in each of those events and may be ready for an international breakthrough.
As for Vollmer, she was in Athens last year as a freestyler and contributed a key leg to the United States’ world-record breaking 800 free relay. In Montreal, Vollmer could very well be seen in the 100 butterfly, a race in which she placed fifth at the Olympic Trials.
In Demerae Christianson and Whitney Myers, the butterfly events will see two athletes who placed third at last year’s Olympic Trials. Christianson touched behind Komisarz and Thompson in the 100 fly while Myers trailed only Sandeno and Kirk in the 200 fly. Also keep an eye on Tanica Jamison, who was sixth in the 100 fly at the 2004 Olympic Trials.