SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic, August 17. AFTER a disqualification in the 400m freestyle relay two nights ago, Team USA found all the motivation needed to break the Pan American Games record in the men's medley relay, winning the final gold of the 2003 Pan American Games.
Over the six-day meet, Team USA amassed 46 of 58 possible medals (21 gold, 17 silver and eight bronze) while breaking 19 Pan American records.
The relay team of Peter Marshall (backstroke, 54.35), Mark Gangloff (breaststroke, 1:00.89), Ben Michaelson (fly, 52.52) and Nick Brunelli (free, 49.51) posted a 3:37.27. The time was the 26th-fastest in history. Marshall's leadoff made him the fifth-fastest in American history in the 100m back.
"When that relay got DQ'd — and I wasn't even on it — that got me really fired up," said Michaelson. "We wanted to prove that we are the best team here, and I think we did that with some safe exchanges tonight."
Brazil touched out Cnada, 3:40.02 to 3:40.12, to take the silver.
The final individual event of the night saw Kara Lynn Joyce prove that she may be thin on experience, but not on talent as the rookie twice lowered the 50m free mark to take gold in 25.24. Joyce needed all of her speed as sshe was pushed by Brazil's Flavia Delaroli, 25.44 and Panama's (and Auburn's) Eileen Coparropa, 25.62. The USA's Colleen Lanné dropped time from this morning to post a 25.84, but it wasn't enough to medal as she finished fifth.
“This morning I did my best prelim time ever,” said Joyce. “Tonight I wanted to replay that and go faster. (The Pan Am experience) was everything I thought it would be and more. I’m so honored to represent my country.”
Jamie Reid earned the top spot on the podium with a win in the 200m back. Reid's 2:13.89 was a half body-length ahead of teammate Diana MacManus who fought back to take the silver in 2:15.39. Guatemala's Gisela Morales picked up her second bronze of the Games.
“It´s amazing,” Reid said. “The team was doing so good here that I was nervous to hold up my end. I wanted to do well. It´s my first international medal and to win gold is great.”
Trinidad's George Bovell dominated the field in the 200 IM, setting a Games and South American record 1:59.49. The Auburn sophomore erased the old Pan Am mark of 2:00.91 set by Ron Karnaugh back in 1991. Karnaugh went on to make the 1992 US Olympic team.
Eric Donnelly was third in 2:02.52, just behind Brazil's Thiago Pereira, at 2:02.31. The USA's James Galloway was a close fourth in a PR 2:02.74.
Venezuela's Ricardo Monasterio took the men's 1500 free decisively in 15:16.98. The USA's Fran Crippen needed a lifetime-best 15:19.63 to take silver as he and teammate Chris Thompson battled down to the finish for second and third. Thompson swam to a 15:19.64 clocking, just one-hundredth of a second behind his younger teammate.
“Under these conditions it´s hard to go fast,” said Crippen. “It´s a long race in 87-degree water, but I´m happy with the way I performed.”
Canada's Audrey Lacroix came charging from behind to take the women's 200m fly in 2:11.02. The USA's Noelle Bassi put together a strong back-half to touch just ahead of Dana Kirk, 2:12.81 to 2:12.85.
Men’s 200m Individual Medley
1. George Bovell, TRI, 1:59.49 GR
2. Thiago Pereira, BRA, 2:02.31
3. Eric Donnelly, USA, 2:02.52
Women’s 200m Butterfly
1. Audrey Lacroix, CAN, 2:11.02
2. Noelle Bassi, USA, 2:12.81
3. Dana Kirk, USA, 2:12.85
Women’s 200m Backstroke
1. Jamie Reid, USA, 2:13.89
2. Diana MacManus, USA, 2:15.39
3. Gisela Morales, GUA, 2:16.19
Men’s 1500m Freestyle
1. Ricardo Monasterio, VEN, 15:16.98
2. Fran Crippen, USA, 15:19.63
3. Chris Thompson, USA, 15:19.64
Women’s 50m Freestyle
1. Kara Lynn Joyce, USA 25.24 GR
2. Flavia Delaroli, BRA, 25.44
3. Eileen Coparropa, PAN, 25.62
Men’s 400m Medley Relay
1. USA (Peter Marshall, Mark Gangloff, Ben Michaelson, Nick Brunelli 3:37.27 GR
2. BRAZIL, 3:40.02
3. CANADA, 3:40.12