ORLANDO, Florida, March 23. DURING the penultimate day of racing at the National Club Swimming Association Junior Nationals, the usual suspects wound up at the top of the podium in the short course yard prelim, long course meter final format. The meet is being broadcast LIVE via pay per view by SwimmingWorld.TV. For more on ordering the stream, click here.
Aquajets' Rachel Bootsma clocked the third-fastest 100-meter back of her career with a winning time of 1:00.02. She's been sub-1:00 twice before with a 59.65 at the 2011 USA Swimming Nationals, and a 59.77 relay leadoff at the 2009 USA Swimming Junior National Championships. She also clocked a 1:00.03 at the 2012 Austin Grand Prix. Blue Tide's Jillian Vitarius took second in 1:02.82, while Verona's Sierra Kuhn placed third in 1:02.89. Northern Kentucky Clipper Caitlyn Forman won the B final in 1:02.44.
Bootsma doubled up with a 1:00.63 to win the women's 100-meter fly. That is her fourth-fastest performance behind a 1:00.27, 1:00.30 and 1:00.49 from the Grand Prix circuit this year. Crimson's Rachel Moore took second in 1:01.41, while Academy Bullets' Mary Schneider turned in a third-place 1:01.50.
Rockville Montgomery's Jack Conger topped the men's 100-meter back in 55.45, his third-best effort as well. His top times are a 55.02 from 2011 Summer Nationals and a 55.34 from the 2011 Winter Nationals. City of Mobile's William Glass placed second in 56.88, while YMCA Hub Fin Tynan Stewart earned third in 57.22.
Conger completed the same double as Bootsma with a 53.46 to win the men's 100-meter fly. With the swim, Conger cleared 54 for the first time, as his previous best had been a 54.14 from 2011 Winter Nationals. Lahaina's Renny Richmond picked up second in 54.38, while City of Mobile's William Glass grabbed third in 54.59.
Curl Burke's Katie Ledecky kept up her strong meet with a 4:08.87 for the women's 400-meter free triumph. The swim is a personal best, lowering her 4:09.30 from the 2012 Missouri Grand Prix, and moving her ever closer to another 15-16 U.S. National Age Group record. Janet Evans owns that standard with a 4:05.45 from 1988. Megan Rankin took second in 4:14.61, while Marietta Marlin Madison Jacobi turned in a 4:17.30 for third.
New Trier's Reed Malone dipped under 3:53 for the first time with a victorious 3:52.38 in the men's 400-meter free. That effort cleared his lifetime best of 3:53.03 set at the 2011 Summer Nationals. He is now within two seconds of Larsen Jensen's 2002 15-16 U.S. National Age Group record of 3:50.68. Crimson's Liam Egan took second in 3:59.97, while Hinsdale's Daniel Thomson placed third in 4:00.17.
Birmingham's Anne Lazor won the women's 200-meter breast in 2:31.47, cutting more than a second from her personal best of 2:33.09 from the sectional circuit last year. Nova of Virginia's Blair Carnes took second in 2:33.20, while David Nadadores' Emily Kopas placed third in 2:34.34. Rockville Montgomery's Sarah Haase, who had been dominating the breaststrokes thus far this meet, fell to fourth in 2:35.72.
Northern Kentucky Clipper Max Williamson cruised to victory in the men's 200-meter breast with a 2:16.54. He demolished his previous personal best of 2:20.75 set at the 2011 Winter Nationals. Since August 2011 at summer nationals, Williamson has progressed from 2:21.30 to 2:16.54. City of Mobile's Marlin Brutkiewicz finished second in 2:18.65, while Jersey Wahoo Andrew Schuehler placed third in 2:19.59.
Short course yard prelims
Rockville Montgomery's Jack Conger topped the men's 100 back in 47.51, half-a-second off his personal best of 46.98 set at the Tom Dolan Invitational in December 2011. City of Mobile's William Glass took second in 48.31, while NASA Wildcat's Andrew Jovanovic placed third in 48.34.
Jack Conger's personal best swim via SwimmingWorld.TV
Conger doubled up in the men's 100 fly with a 47.19, which clipped his personal best of 47.43 clocked in February of this year at his high school championships. Lahaina's Renny Richmond placed second in 47.49, while Nasa Wildcat's Andrew Jovanovic took third in 48.07.
Aquajets' Rachel Bootsma demonstrated her likely heavy training load as she wound up taking the top time in 51.27, well back of her 50.76 personal best from last year's NCSA Juniors that ranks her in the top five ever in the women's 100-yard back. Blue Tide's Jillian Vitarius placed second in 54.39, while Crimson's Rachel Moore earned third in 54.49.
Rachel Bootsma's personal best swim via SwimmingWorld.TV
Bootsma completed the same double as Conger, with a 52.05 to win the women's 100 fly. That performance bested her personal best of 52.64 clocked at the 2011 NCSA Juniors. Curl Burke's Janet Hu touched second in 53.83, while BGCN Westchester's Morgan Karetnick finished third in 54.05.
Rachel Bootsma's former personal best swim via SwimmingWorld.TV
Curl Burke's Katie Ledecky, who set a pair of 15-16 U.S. National Age Group records on the first night shortly after aging up, clocked the top time in the women's 500-yard free with a 4:43.09. That swim is well off her personal best of 4:35.14 set in November of last year. Her personal best is within striking distance of Katie Hoff's 15-16 U.S. National Age Group record in the event — a 4:34.21 set in 2006. Megan Rankin placed second in 4:45.88, while Marietta Marlins' Madison Jacobi touched third in 4:46.88.
Northern Kentucky Clipper Max Williamson broke the 2:00 barrier for the first time in the men's 200-yard breast with a 1:59.34. That effort bettered his personal best of 2:00.36 from last year's NCSA Junior Nationals. City of Mobile's Marlin Brutkiewicz took second in 2:00.07, while Baylor's Christian Carbone finished third in 2:00.11.
Max Williamson's former personal best swim via SwimmingWorld.TV
Rockville Montgomery's Sarah Haase continued her breakthrough meet with a stunning time of 2:10.78. That performance cut more than a second off her previous personal best of 2:12.08 also set at last year's NCSA Juniors. Birmingham's Anne Lazor placed second in 2:11.60, while Nova of Virginia's Blair Carnes picked up third in 2:12.43.
Sarah Haase's former personal best swim via SwimmingWorld.TV
Rockville Montgomery's James Powell topped the men's 500 free in 4:22.25, while Hinsdale's Daniel Thomson took second in 4:24.93. New Trier's Reed Malone picked up third in 4:24.97.
In relay action, Curl Burke's Cyrus Hashemi, Paul O'Hara, Andrew Seliskar and Sean Sullivan won the men's 200 freestyle relay in 1:22.12, ahead of New Trier's Daniel Whitcomb, Reed Malone, David Schriesheim and Jonathan Grodecki (1:22.58). Bootsma anchored the Aquajets with a 22.02 to close out Kaia Grobe, Courtney Evensen and Emma Paulson's 1:32.63 to win the women's 200 free relay.