Kyle Cormier, James Crawford Advance to Finals in 200 Free

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina, May 15. SOUTH Carolina senior Kyle Cormier and freshman James Crawford advanced to Friday evening's finals in the 200-meter freestyle at the Charlotte Ultraswim with times that rivaled the world's best this morning. Several other Gamecocks also competed in the morning's preliminaries at the Mecklenburg County Aquatic Center.

Cormier, the school record-holder in the 200 freestyle (short-course yards), turned in a long-course meters time of 1:52.16, the 10th- fastest time out of more than 100 swimmers in the preliminary heats and a qualifying time for the World Championships. Swimming in the same heat with U.S. Olympian Michael Phelps, Cormier actually led the gold-medal winner at the 100-meter split by .03 seconds, but finished more than a second and a half behind Phelps. Cormier will compete in the 'B' final as the 10th qualifier; he missed the championship final by less than a second.

Crawford qualified for the 24th and final spot in the evening's finals with a time of 1:54.58, advancing to the 'C' final. Crawford was the second-fastest performer for South Carolina during the collegiate season behind Cormier and showed it by advancing to the evening swim in an elite field of competitors. The 'A' final will include U.S. Olympians Phelps, Peter Vanderkaay and Aaron Piersol, along with NCAA Champion Tyler Clary.

Trey Tharpe (2:04.67) and Ham Hollett (2:09.02) also competed in the 200 free but missed the finals.

In other events, freshman Lindsey Olson finished 58th in the women's 200 free with a time of 2:08.04 and 59th in the 100 butterfly in 1:06.34. Lydia Hackert was 34th in 100 breaststroke prelims with a 1:16.97.

Tonight's finals get underway at 6 p.m. with coverage available through Universal Sports and Live results can be followed through

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