CHARLOTTE, North Carolina, May 14. THE third evening of the Charlotte UltraSwim produced several top 10 world ranked times in long course meter competition.
Trojan's Rebecca Soni just missed her top-ranked effort in the women's 200 breast with a victorious time of 2:23.33. Her world best this year is a 2:23.27 from February. Tucson Ford's Amanda Beard grabbed second in 2:26.24 for a top 20 time, while Tennessee's Martina Moravcikova and Goteberg's Amanda Rutqvist tied for third with matching 2:30.03s.
Eric Shanteau jumped into eighth in the world rankings in the men's 200 breast with a winning 2:10.95. Ohio State's Elliott Keefer touched a distant second in 2:16.02, while Florida State's Rob Holderness snared third in 2:18.21.
A star-studded field produced an exciting finish with California veteran Natalie Coughlin downing the youngsters with a victorious time of 1:00.02. Coughlin just missed clearing 1:00 for the first time this year, but moved to seventh in the world – ahead of her ninth-ranked previous season best of 1:00.04 from last month. Colorado Stars' Missy Franklin claimed second in 1:00.22, well off her fourth-ranked season best of 59.56 from March. Aquajets' Rachel Bootsma finished third in 1:00.33 to take 11th in the world, while NBAC's Elizabeth Pelton placed fourth in 1:00.40 for 13th in the rankings.
Minnetonka's David Plummer smoked the men's 100 back with a top time of 54.04. That swim moved him into a ninth-ranked tie with Aristeidis Grigoriadis in the world rankings. SwimMAC's Nick Thoman finished second in 54.15, off his seventh-ranked season best of 53.93 from March. Tucson Ford's Matt Grevers raced into third with a 54.79. Grevers has been much faster with an 11th-ranked season best of 54.08 from March.
A trio of top 20 times went on the board in the women's 200 fly. Longhorn's Kathleen Hersey held off a hard-charging Elaine Breeden with a winning effort of 2:09.12 for 17th in the rankings. Breeden finished second in 2:09.32, while PPO Montreal's Audrey Lacroix earned third-place honors in 2:09.40. Breeden (2:08.60) and Lacroix (2:08.61) have been faster this year.
Club Wolverine's Wu Peng ate NBAC's Michael Phelps up on the walls, and had a phenomenal final lap en route to a convincing 1:56.83 to 1:58.22 triumph in the men's 200 fly. Wu came up short of his 12th-ranked season best of 1:56.62 from last month, while Phelps finished well off his fourth-ranked season best of 1:55.34. SwimMAC's Davis Tarwater snatched third place with a time of 2:00.52.
Trojan's Jessica Hardy clipped Colorado Stars' Kara Lynn Joyce, 25.13 to 25.17 in the women's 50 free. Hardy has been much faster in the splash-and-dash with a fifth-ranked season best of 24.80 from Rio this month. Joyce, however, tied for 19th in the world rankings. SwimAtlanta's Amanda Weir rounded out the podium with a third-place 25.31.
SwimMAC dominated the men's 50 free with Josh Schneider winning the rematch of the ultra-hyped day one swimoff with Cullen Jones, 22.51 to 22.52. In a World Championships roster swimoff on day one, Jones beat Schneider, 22.24 to 22.28. Teammate Nick Brunelli helped the hosts to a podium sweep with a third-place 22.56.
Mission Viejo's Chloe Sutton decided to turn on the jets early in the women's 400 free, compared to her final 100 meter surge in the 1500 free on night one. Sutton dominated the finale in the middle distance event with a time of 4:08.73. She's been much faster this year with a ninth-ranked time of 4:06.04 in March. PPO Montreal's Barbara Jardin touched second in 4:11.02, while Gator's Andreina Pinto earned third in 4:12.30.
Trojan's Dominik Meichtry smoked the field in the men's 400 free with a time of 3:52.00. Gator's Conor Dwyer finished second in 3:53.65, while Club Wolverine's Matt Patton wound up third overall in 3:54.08. Gator's Peter Vanderkaay took fourth in 3:55.30, while Daytona Beach's Ryan Lochte won the B final in 3:56.42.
Colorado Stars' Jordan Mattern, Caroline Piehl, Kara Lynn Joyce and Missy Franklin cruised to victory in the women's 800 free relay with an 8:12.19. Club Wolverine's Adam DeJong, Matt Patton, Wu Peng and Dan Madwed posted a 7:36.38 to win the men' s 800 free relay.