VICTORIA, British Columbia, April 3. PLENTY of world-ranked times went on the scoreboard tonight at the Canadian long course nationals, where five swimmers earned their spots onto the rosters for the Commonwealth Games and Pan Pacific championships.
Women 100 free
Poon’s victory in the 100 freestyle to open tonight’s competition at the Canadian long course nationals was never in jeopardy, as she cruised to a berth on the international team.
Poon’s 54.67 gave her automatic selection to the Canadian team that will attend the Commonwealth Games and Pan Pacific championships, having beaten the 55.05 that ranked 16th at last year’s world championships. The time ranks her 11th in the world standings.
Finishing second in the race was Sandrine Mainville, taking her second event of the meet after capturing the 50 fly win last night with a 55.29. Alyson Ackman was third with a 55.48 while Michelle Williams was fourth with a 55.57 to give Swimming Canada four times to add and consider for relay entry into this summer’s meets.
Men 100 free
After being left on the blocks at the start, Yuri Kisil fought back to post his first national title, taking the 100 freestyle in a 49.87.
It’s his first time under 50 seconds, with his best time of 51.44 done last month. Second place went to Dominique Massie-Martel with a 49.98 to also mark his first time under 50 seconds. Massie-Martel was the only swimmer under 24 seconds at the 50-meter mark, posting a 23.99. Third place went to Luke Peddie with a 50.41, while Stefan Milosevic’s 50.76 might be used to help get a 400 free relay qualified for international competition.
“The sky’s the limit,” Kisil said after his win that missed out on automatic qualification for the international racing squad. Kisil could get in on other criteria using world rankings and administrative discretion.
Two collegiate swimmers were in the top two of the B final, the highest heat international swimmers could race. Stanford’s Tom Kremer won the B final with a 50.17 with Indiana’s Anze Tavcar posting a 50.70.
Women 100 breast
Tera Van Beilen won her second event of the meet, taking the 100 breast in a close race at the finish.
Van Beilen’s 1:08.39 was a second off her lifetime best and three hundredths off the automatic qualifying time to make international racing. But the time stands eighth-fastest in the world, so her global ranking could be enough to get her on the international roster.
Bronwyn Pasloski was second in 1:08.59, beating her personal best of 1:09.80. Rachel Nicol took third with a 1:09.39.
In the B final, where international swimmers are racing tonight, Ireland’s duo of Fiona Doyle and Sycerin McMahon went 1-2 with times of 1:08.72 and 1:09.66, respectively.
Men 100 breast
After finishing third at the NCAA championships in the 100 breast, Richard Funk’s chances of winning the event at the Canadian long course nationals was not in question. But how fast would he swim?
Funk, who represented Michigan cruised to a 1:01.43 for the win by a body length over Matthew Ackman, who posted a 1:02.13 for second. Lyam Dias, who swam for Purdue last week at NCAAs, was third with a 1:02.31.
Funk was well off the automatic selection time of 1:00.44, which is faster than his lifetime best of 1:00.87.
Women 400 IM
Two women earned automatic qualification to the Commonwealth Games and Pan Pacific championships in the 400 IM at the Canadian long course nationals, with Erika Seltenreich-Hodgson taking two seconds off her lifetime best to win the event.
Seltenreich-Hodgson posted a 4:40.07 to break Alexa Komarnycky’s meet record of 4:40.10 from 2009 and put herself seventh in the world rankings for 2014. Emily Overholt, who led for the first half of the race, finished second with a 4:42.84 to just miss her Canadian 15-17 age group record of 4:42.03. Both swimmers beat the 4:44.50 needed to automatically qualify for the international racing roster.
Sydney Pickrem was third with a 4:45.75.
Men 400 IM
Alec Page has been the top 400 IM swimmer in Canada for many years, but that dominance was put into question in tonight’s final at the Canadian long course nationals.
Page, a 2012 Olympian, took the race out hard in butterfly, outsplitting the field by a body length. But Luke Reilly, whose top international meet was last summer’s junior world championships, pulled even in the backstroke leg. Though Page regained a sizeable lead after breaststroke, Reilly found an extra gear on freestyle. Page won the race in 4:15.80 over Reilly’s 4:15.86.
Both swimmers enjoyed lifetime bests in the final. Page’s previous best of 4:16.62 came at last year’s world championships, while Reilly’s 4:18.36 came at the junior world championships. Not only do tonight’s swims automatically qualify then to race at the Commonwealth Games and Pan Pacific championships, but rank them fifth and sixth in the global standings for the year.
Third place went to Will Brothers with a 4:23.36, just beating his lifetime best of 4:23.66.
Women 50 back
Sinead Russell backed up her win in the 100 backstroke last night with a victory in the 50-meter distance tonight at the Canadian long course nationals.
The event is not being used to select swimmers for the Commonwealth Games or Pan Pacific championships, so the race was only for a national title. Russell won with a 28.49, just four tenths off Julia Wilkinson’s national record of 28.09 and Wilkinson’s meet record of 28.13.
Brooklynn Snodgrass was second in 28.52, while Paige Miller was third with a 28.56. The top three swimmers just competed at the NCAA championships two weeks ago and are looking to gain international experience this summer.
Men 50 back
up the theme of athletes taking second titles tonight, Russell Wood clinched the win in the 50 backstroke tonight to go along with his 100 back from last night. Wood’s time of 25.69 put a bit of a scare into Pascal Wollach’s national record of 25.23 and meet record of 25.37.
The event is not being used for selection to the Commonwealth Games or Pan Pacific championships, but it’s good enough for Wood’s second win of the meet. Tim Zeng placed second with a 26.28 while Josh Dow took third with a 26.37.