ZAGREB, Croatia, July 29. A handful of top swimmers dominated the Croatian National Championships held in Zagreb this weekend. Out of 34 total individual titles distributed, only 10 went to swimmers that did not earn multiple crowns throughout the meet.
Additionally, five Croatian national records fell throughout the competition. Marko Strahija became the first sub-55 Croatian in the 100 back with a clocking of 54.67. That performance eclipsed the 55.08 set by Gordan Kozulj in 2005.
Karla Sitic provided the women their individual national record with a time of 17:42.94 as she dominated the 1500 free. She also went on to win the 200 fly in 2:26.91.
The national standard fell in the women's 400 freestyle relay as Matea Peteh (59.25), Zeljana Knezevic (59.50), Iva Grivicic (58.82) and Smiljana Marinovic (58.88) dropped more than a second off the record time of 3:57.99 set in 2004 with a 3:56.45 to win the title.
Also, both 400 medley relays featured record-setting performances. The women's team of Iva Grivicic (1:04.77), Smiljana Marinovic (1:13.87), Zeljana Knezevic (1:05.99) and Matea Peteh (59.02) set its record in 4:23.75 to destroy the 4:26.13 set in 2006. Meanwhile, the men's foursome of Sasa Impric (57.57), Vanja Rogulj (1:02.54), Alexei Puninski (53.69) and Mario Delac (50.09) clocked a 3:43.89 to nip the 3:43.94 set in 2006.
On the women's side of the meet, Sanja Jovanovic claimed four individual titles scattered among several strokes. She won the 50 back in 29.68, the 200 back in 2:20.49, the 50 fly in 27.79 and the 200 IM in 2:20.98.
Two other women tripled during the meet as Anja Trisic owned most of the freestyle titles. She took home the 200 (2:07.27), 400 (4:27.69) and the 800 (9:15.40), while Marinovic swept the breaststroke races with victories in the 50 (33.63), 100 (1:12.34) and 200 (2:35.59).
For the men, Sasa Impric and Vanja Rogulj each captured a trio of titles. Impric won the 200 back (2:05.36) and the 200 (2:03.56) and 400 (4:38.07) IMs, while Rogulj swept the breaststroke with wins in the 50 (29.21), 100 (1:02.59) and 200 (2:23.47).
Erazmo Marsanic, Alexei Puninski and Mario Todorovic also doubled up during the competition. Marsanic earned wins in the 800 (8:58.06) and 1500 (16:54.61) frees, while Puninski won the 50 (22.56) and 100 (49.76) frees. Todorovic nabbed the 50 (24.68) and 100 (53.70) fly titles.
Individual winners included Monika Babok in the women's 50 free (26.85), Maria Culjak in the women's 100 free (58.82), Dominik Straga in the men's 200 free (1:51.80), Mateo Muzek in the men's 400 free (4:08.36), Ivan Tolic in the men's 50 back (26.12), Iva Grivicic in the women's 100 back (1:05.03), Zeljana Knezevic in the women's 100 fly (1:04.24), Petar Mrcela in the men's 200 IM (2:05.41) and Kim Daniela Pavlin in the women's 400 IM (5:07.42).