MISSION VIEJO, Calif., June 23. AT the TYR Swim Meet of Champions, which concluded here this evening at Mission Viejo's Marguerite Recreation Center Pool, Dr. Dave Salo, coach of the powerhouse Novaquatics' team, had his star pupil, former Stanford All-America and Sydney Olympian Gabrielle Rose, swim nine events — seven individual, two relays.
The 24-year-old former Cardinal responded with a trio of runner-up finishes the meet's first three days, and this evening mounted the victory podium with a blazing 2:15.46, just off her seasonal best of 2:15.40 last month on the Mare Nostrum tour.
Rose has a trio of U.S. Nationals 200 IM titles to her credit. She'll be seeking to defend the title she won at this spring's championships in Minneapolis at Ft. Lauderdale come August, then aim for a repeat at the Pan-Pacs in Yokohama.
Her career-best is 2:13.78 that won her the title at last summer's U.S. Nationals in Clovis. At Minneapolis, she won in 2:15.59, so to swim faster
here in the midst of heavy training is no mean feat.
Earlier tonight she placed second in the 100 breast to Swim Team of Placentia's (STOP's) Erin Sieper by a mere .01. Prior to that she finished second in the 100-200 frees on Friday and Saturday to Trojan's Lindsay Benko by just .07 and .08, respectively.
The American 200 IM record is 2:11.91 by Summer Sanders from the Barcelona Olympics a decade ago. Last summer Auburn's Maggie Bowen — who holds the
200 IM American/NCAA yards record and is double-defending champ — won the World Championships in 2:11.93 to rank No. 1 globally.
Salo said he was pleased with Rose's swim, adding:
"We're trying to work on improvements on her breaststroke and butterfly and she has improved a lot. We'll see what happens at Ft. Lauderdale."
NOVA teammate Aaron Peirsol, 200 back world record-holder, won the 100 in 56.81 in his only swim of the meet. He missed the 200 Friday after staying out late the previous evening following his high school graduation.
He leads the world with his 54.47 from the spring championships and will be a freshman for Coach Eddie Reese's triple-defending NCAA Champ Texas
Longhorns this fall in Austin.
Yet another Rising NOVA star, backstroker Diana MacManus, who won both dorsal races at Minneapolis, won the 100 in 1:03.62. She'll likely get her first chacne to race Coughlin at Lauderdale.
NGSV's Kristen Caverly, who won the 200 breast-400 IM Saturday, was third in the 100 breast; Santa Barbara' Adrienne Binder won the 1500 free (16:42.80) as did Trojan Erik Vendt on the men's side (15:52.45).
Vendt was NCAA 1650 free-400 IM champ at Athens, GA. last March and was voted the meet's most valuable swimmer. He was also silver medalist at Sydney (Olympics) and Fukuoka (World Championships) in the 400 IM. His mile pr — 14:59.11 from Sydney — ranks him No. 2 on the all-time U.S. list.
— Bill Bell