OMAHA, Nebraska, June 8. THE U.S. Olympic Trials test event, the Mutual of Omaha Swimvitational, came to a successful close with another strong night of swimming.
Kim Vandenberg began the final night of action with a triumph in the women's 200 fly. She hit the wall in 2:08.55, well ahead of Andie Taylor's second-place time of 2:11.97. Bridget O'Connor rounded out the top three in 2:12.32.
The men's 200 fly featured Dan Madwed posting an overpowering time of 1:58.43, ahead of Bobby Bollier's second-place time of 1:59.30. Juan Veloz placed third in 1:59.79.
The splash-and-dash events were next with Lara Jackson touching out Agata Korc, 25.14 to 25.24, in the women's 50 free. Anna Turner finished third in 25.40.
Nathan Adrian continued his quick ascension in the U.S. sprint scene when he beat out Race Club mentor Gary Hall Jr., 22.01 to 22.20, in the men's 50 free. Adrian's time of 22.01 was second this weekend to only Eamon Sullivan's 21.85 from the Sette Colli meet held on Rome. The time put Adrian among the top 10 in the world this year. Roland Schoeman snatched third in 22.23, while the top eight proved to be a star-studded field with Duje Draganja (22.24), George Bovell (22.31), Nick Brunelli (22.44), Neil Walker (22.80) and Matt Grevers (22.81) comprising the A final.
In the women's 200 IM, Ariana Kukors posted a top 10 time (2:11.68) in the world this year, along with the third best this weekend behind Natalie Coughlin's American record of 2:09.77 and Stephanie Rice's 2:11.34. Caitlin Leverenz snagged second in 2:13.88, while Amanda Beard showed some versatility with a third-place time of 2:15.43.
Darian Townsend grabbed a win in the men's 200 IM with a time of 2:00.30. Only three swimmers had better times than him across the world this weekend with Takurou Fujii (1:59.28), Ken Takakuwa (1:59.98) and Liam Tancock (2:00.26) popping better times. Eric Shanteau nearly reeled Townsend in during the backhalf with a second-place time of 2:01.06, while Tim Liebhold took third in 2:03.00.
Katie Hoff, surprisingly, won her first gold medal of the weekend with a top time of 2:09.95 in the women's 200 back. Kate Zubkova snared second with a time of 2:11.68, while Kelly Harrigan finished third in 2:14.81.
David Plummer then won wire-to-wire in the men's 200 back with a time of 2:01.22. Cory Chitwood placed second in 2:02.03, while Mike Hopkins took third in 2:03.67.
Kate Ziegler wrapped up a strong meet with a strong time of 8:26.56 in the women's 800 free. That performance improved her best time of the year of 8:28.04, and is the second-best effort of the weekend behind only Alessia Filippi's 8:20.70 from the Sette Colli meet in Rome. Amanda Smith collected second in 8:46.51, while Samantha Shellem placed third in 8:47.08.
Two training partners from Indiana University Club Paradise, Sergiy Fesenko and John Kevin Koehler put on a show in the men's 1500 free. While Tom Koucheravy and Koehler went out fast, Fesenko had just a little too much in the tank allowing him to overtake the duo and touch out Koehler, 15:22.46 to 15:22.67. Koucheravy wound up in third in 15:25.95.