Editorial coverage for U.S. Junior Nationals proudly sponsored by Q Swimwear!
IRVINE, California, August 1. WHILE many of the other events had close calls, the 400 IM demonstrated who was the top swimmer with some dominating performances at the USA Swimming Junior Nationals.
Women’s 400 IM
Bellevue’s Kim Williams dominated the championship heat and she looked in pain after the swim with a 4:43.18. Prior to today, her best had been a 4:48.01 from two years ago, so that represents a pretty strong time drop this evening. Y-Sparta’s Savanna Faulconer tracked down silver in 4:45.89, down from her best of 4:47.19 from this morning. Lakeside’s Leah Stevens put up a 4:46.64 to win bronze in the finale.
North Carolina’s Madison Homovich (4:49.83), Aberdeen’s Hannah Kastigar (4:50.13), FAST’s Lauren Edelman (4:50.37), Redlands’ Sonia Wang (4:50.73) and Tampa Bay’s Christin Rockway (4:52.28) put up the rest of the swims in the championship heat.
Iowa Flyer Ruby Martin lived up to her team’s name as she flew down the final 50 meters to overtake Rays’ Sydney Lofquist, 4:50.38 to 4:50.54, for the B final win. Entering today, her best had been a 4:52.85, while Lofquist held a 4:51.28 personal record. Crown Point’s Hannah Kukurugya pulled off a third-place swim with a 4:51.45.
Rays’ Zoe Thatcher won the C final of the distance medley by more than a second with a 4:48.77. That swim demolished her lifetime best of 4:55.70 from prelims today, and would have placed her fourth in the A final. In fact, she entered the day with a 4:59.03 lifetime best in the event, so she dropped double digits in just one day. Davis Arden’s Chenoa Devine took second in 4:50.50 with Gator’s Hannah Burns placing third in 4:51.43.
Men’s 400 IM
He couldn’t replicate his top time of 4:17.79 from last year’s juniors, but PASA’s Curtis Ogren had more than enough with a 4:18.02 to win the men’s championship finale. He’s likely keeping some of his powder dry for senior nationals next week here in Irvine. Cascade’s Abrahm Devine clinched second-place honors with a time of 4:20.39, while Wilton Y’s Ian Rainey finished third in 4:20.72. CyFair’s Austin Van Overdam nearly made the top three, settling for fourth in 4:20.90.
Aquazot’s Alex Peterson (4:24.33), PACK’s Ben Walker (4:26.32), Tualatin’s Patrick Mulcare (4:27.44) and SwimAtlanta’s Tom Peribonio (4:27.46) also battled in the A final.
Arizona Gold packed a wallop in the B final as Mark Jurek (4:22.91) and Antonio Ramirez (4:24.84) went 1-2 in the consolation heat. Jurek smashed his best of 4:24.95 from prelims, while Ramirez had a best of 4:26.66 from prelims before crushing that time tonight. Crimson’s Anthony Marcantonio wound up third in the heat with a 4:25.90.
Dayton Raider Brock Turner had too much left down the stretch for SwimAtlanta’s Cody Bekemeyer as Turner won the C final tonight, 4:26.44 to 4:26.90. Alex Lebed placed third in the bonus heat in 4:27.16.