Caeleb Dressel Lowers Record In Record-Filled Finals

A good day for Caeleb Dressel got even better in the 50-yard freestyle. After setting a U.S. record in preliminaries, the sophomore posted an even faster time in Wednesday’s finals. The U.S. National Team member touched in 18.23, winning the race by almost a full second. Auburn’s Peter Holoda was second with a time of 19.17, and Missouri’s Michael Chadwick energized the home crowd with a third place finish.

The eventful evening started with a battle between teammates. Georgia seniors Brittany MacLean and Hali Flickinger went back and forth in the women’s 500-yard freestyle. MacLean ultimately touched first with a time of 4:33.10, the second-fastest mark time in the country this season and a pool record. Flickinger touched in 4:33.90. Texas A&M’s Sarah Gibson was third in 4:39.61.

Florida picked up major team points in the men’s 500-yard freestyle. Gator swimmers touched in first and third place. Pawel Werner led the way with nation’s second fastest time in 2016. The senior touched in 4:13.31. Akaram Mahmoud of South Carolina finished less than two-tenths of a second later with a time of 4:13.31. Mahmoud was followed by Florida’s Mitch D’Arrigo. 

In the women’s 200-yard individual medley, Lisa Bratton of Texas A&M finished first with a time of 1:54.97, a pool record. The sophomore’s time was the fourth fastest in the nation this season. She was followed by teammate Bethany Galat, who touched in 1:55.86. Georgia’s Meaghan Raab picked up points for the Bulldogs with a third place time of 1:55.99.

Joe Patching of Auburn set a new pool record with a time of 1:42.21 in the men’s 200-yard individual medley race. Florida’s Jan Switkowski and Mark Szaranek finished second and third, respectively.

Georgia’s Olivia Smoliga led the way in the women’s 50-yard freestyle. She set a pool record in the race with a time of Faith Johnson and Madeline Banic finished second and third.

In diving, Mauricio Robles of Tennessee touched first with a score of 459.75, a SEC record. Missouri’s Clark Thomas was second with a score of 429.40 and Sam Thorton of Texas A&M was third, racking up 391.95 points.

The day ended with the men’s and women’s 200-yard freestyle relay. The core of Tennessee sprinters brought home the win in the women’s event. The team consisted of Johnson, Harper Bruens, Banic and Kira Toussaint. The Volunteer team posted a pool-record time of 1:27.36, the fastest time in the country.

The Bulldog team of Smoliga, Raab, Kylie Stewart and Flickinger touched second with a time of 1:28.70. Texas A&M was third with a time of 1:29.07. The team consisted of Lexie Lupton, Kristin Malone, Claire Brandt and Beryl Gastaldello. 

Dressel found himself back atop the podium in the men’s 200-yard freestyle relay. He was joined by teammates Corey Main, Mark Szaranek and Jack Blyzinskyj. The Gator team posted a pool record time of 1:16.46.

Auburn finished just behind the Gators with a time of 1:16.63. The Tiger team consisted of Holoda, Jacob Molacek, Michael Duderstadt and Kyle Darmody. The Alabama team of Laurent Bams, Brett Walsh, Luke Kaliszak and Kristian Gkolomeev was third.

Going into day three, Florida leads all men’s teams with 504 points. They are followed by Auburn (497) and Georgia (362). Tennessee is the leading women’s team with 437.5 points. Georgia is second (430) and Texas A&M is third (412.5).

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Author: Peter Baugh

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Peter Baugh is a freshman at the University of Missouri and is the assistant sports editor for the Maneater, Mizzou's student run newspaper. He swam and played baseball in high school. He is a two time finalist in the National Scholastic Press Association Sports Story of the Year contest and was named the SSP Journalist of the Year for the St. Louis area. He served as co editor-in-chief for his high school newspaper, The Globe, and also worked for the St. Louis American newspaper.

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