2016 Speedo Winter Junior Championships West: Day 3 Finals Recap

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Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Everything you need to follow along live with day three finals of the 2016 Speedo Winter Junior Championships West. Competition begins at 6 p.m. EST in College Station, TX.

2016 Speedo Winter Junior Championships West, Day 3 Finals – Results


  • Women’s 400 IM
  • Men’s 400 IM
  • Women’s 100 Fly
  • Men’s 100 Fly
  • Women’s 200 Free
  • Men’s 200 Free
  • Women’s 100 Breast
  • Men’s 100 Breast
  • Women’s 100 Back
  • Men’s 100 Back
  • Women’s 200 Free Relay
  • Men’s 200 Free Relay

Women’s 400 IM:

Gabrielle Kopenski made a statement in the first event of the night with a strong, outside smoke finish in the women’s 400 IM, in a time of 4:11.50. Thanks to a strong back half, Texas Ford Aquatics’ swimmer just touched out the top seed, Longhorn Aquatics’ Regan Barney, who clocked in at 4:12.64. The final yards of the race made all the difference, as Kopenski surged ahead in the final 50 at 27.28.

The next three women all finished within one second of one another. Natalia Jaspeado of Scottsdale Aquatics nabbed bronze in 4:14.25, while Zoe Grawanska and Katie Glavinovich followed at 4:14.56 and 4:14.91, respectively.

15-year-old Reese Hazan touched the wall at 4:15.71, good for fifth place. Finally, the heat was rounded out by Kate Krolikowski at 4:16.40 and Mikki Thomson at 4:17.70.

Men’s 400 IM:

The men’s 400 IM looked to be a tight field until Paolo Alto Stanford Aquatics’ Alex Liang pulled ahead during the second fifty of the backstroke leg. Liang maintained a dominant lead for the remainder of the race, finishing in an impressive 3:46.75. Top seed Michael Zarian of the Jeffco Hurricanes notched second at 3:49.06. Meanwhile, Caleb Aman of Lane Four Aquatics and Johnthomas Larson of Edina Swim Club battled to the finish and tied for bronze in 3:51.27.

Colter Carman of the North Texas Nadadores posted a 3:52.12, good enough for fourth, while Alamo Area Aquatics’ Mikey Calvillo grabbed fifth in 3:54.78. Kevin Vargas of La Mirada Armada managed a 3:55.34, and Mihail Amiorkov, of the Sandpipers of Nevada, touched eighth in 3:57.30.

Women’s 100 Butterfly:

Regan Smith dominated the 100 butterfly once again, taking down her own National Age Group Record for 13- and 14-year-olds set this morning, the meet record, and the 52-second barrier in an an astonishing 51.73. She had a close race to gold, however, thanks to Aquazot Swim Club’s Eva Merrell. Merrell who hung tight with Smith until the last five yards, a race good enough for silver and for a 51.93. The two leaders were followed by QuickSilver Swim Club’s Lauren Green with a 52.71 for the bronze.

Austin Swim Club’s Dakota Luther and Bi-County Regional Elite Aquatics’ Alexis Margett fought for fourth, with Luther ultimately coming out on top in 52.94, just four hundreths of a second ahead of Margett. Taylor Pike of Razorback Aquatic Club nabbed sixth in 53.34, chased down by SOCAL Aquatics’ Elisa Garcia (53.33) and Fort Collins’ Coleen Gillilan (53.69).

Men’s 100 Butterfly:

Ryan Hoffer of Scottsdale Aquatics handily won the 100 butterfly in 45.47. Hoffer was followed by Alvin Jiang of Lakeside Aquatics, who earned silver in a 47.25. Shaine Casas, swimming unattached for the Woodlands, nabbed third in 47.64.

A deep field followed, headed up by the Terrapins Swim team’s Andrei Minakov in 47.78. Jack LeVant of North Texas Nadadores touched behind him in 47.91, while Mission Viejo’s Daniel Kim finished in 48.30. Meanwhile, Dads Club Swim Team’s Clayton Bobo grabbed seventh in 48.72, and Sierra Marlins’ Bryce Mefford touched for 8th in 52.39.

Women’s 200 Freestyle:

In an unsurprising finish, Mission Viejo’s Samantha Shelton took home gold with a solid 1:44.95, thanks to consistent and well-controlled splits. Shelton was closely followed by Aggie Swim Club’s Julia Cook, with a 1:45.35. The rest of the field followed further behind, led by Waves Bloomington’s Melissa Pish, the event’s bronze medalist, in 1:46.08.

Ella Ristic of Mission Viejo nabbed fourth in 1:46.78, while Evie Pfeifer of the CSP Tideriders touched behind her in 1:47.21. In the mean time, Dakota Luther of Austin Swim Club fought for sixth with a 1:47.41, just touching out Waves Bloomingon’s Grace Ariola, who finished with a 1:47.66, and Mansfield Aquatics’ Haley Yelle, who came home with eighth in a 1:48.42.

Men’s 200 Freestyle:

Alexei Sancov of the Terrapins managed to hold on to his slim lead after a daring 22.08 split in the first 50 of the event. Sancov claimed gold with a 1:34.06, and he was followed by Jack LeVant of the North Texas Nadadores in a 1:35.42, who made his charge in the second fifty of the 200. Patrick Callan, who had another blazing first 50, brought back silver for Trident Aquatics with a 1:35.62.

In fourth place, Alexander Zettle of Lakeside Aquatic Club posted a 1:36.22, while Daniel Carr of Pikes Peak accomplished a 1:37.34 for fifth. Matthew Willenbring of Austin Swim Club tied Carr’s final 50 time but could not make up quite enough water in the back half, so he finished in sixth with a 1:37.43. Meanwhile, Owen Kao of Irvine Novaquatics swam a 1:38.75 for seventh, and Sierra Marlins Swim Club’s Bryce Mefford trailed the field in a 1:48.93.

Women’s 100 Breaststroke:

Zoe Bartel of Fort Collins smashed the meet record of 59.67, previously set by Lilly King in 2013, with a 59.04. Trailing behind her, Palo Alto Stanford’s Grace Zhao nabbed silver with a 1:00.54, and Crow Canyon’s Zoie Hartman took bronze with a 1:01.30.

A tight field followed, with Rachel Ramey of Texas Ford Aquatic Club squeaking out fourth in 1:01.49, and Halle Morris of North Bay Aquatics following in 1:01.62.  Alicia Harrison of Buenaventura Swim Club achieved seventh-place status with a 1:02.03, while Halladay Kinsey of the Davis Aquadarts finished just behind her for eighth in a respectable 1:02.25.

Men’s 100 Breaststroke:

Sun-shine Aquatics’ MJ Mao celebrated his gold and 53.98 with an enthusiastic fist pump. Mao edged out a strong heat. He was followed by Daniel Roy, swimming unattached, who achieved a 54.23 in the event, and Zane Backers, of Sandpipers of Nevada, who notched a 54.38 for bronze.

Trent Pellini of Mission Viejo and Ryan Geheb of Nitro Swimming stayed among the leaders, hitting the touchpads at 54.74 and 54.94, respectively. Shane Blinkman of St. Croix Swim Club set the mark for sixth with a 55.25, while Adam Zimmer of Missoula Aquatic Club (55.46) and Elijah Warren of Denver Swim Academy (56.05) finished out the speedy heat.   

Women’s 100 Backstroke:

Regan Smith of Riptide Swim Team made history once again with a 51.09. The time was good enough for the National Age Group Record for 13- and 14-year-olds, as well as the meet record. Behind Smith’s dominating performance, Julia Cook of Aggie Swim Club claimed silver in 52.47, and Grace Ariola of Waves Bloomington finished for bronze with a 53.08.

Five of the remaining six competitors remained in the 53-second range. Fort Collins’ Bayley Steward nabbed fourth with a 53.08, while Fort Collins’ Zoe Bartel made an appearance with a 53.42. Just two hundredths behind her, Aquazot’s Eva Merrell posted a 53.44. Likewise, Merrell was closely followed by Chloe Clark of Sierra Marlins, in a 53.63, while Nicole Oliva stayed within the 54-second range in 54.45.

Men’s 100 Backstroke:

Scottsdale Aquatic Club’s Ryan Hoffer annihilated the field in the 100 backstroke, grabbing gold in a blazing 46.27, less than a second short of his own meet record, set last year. Meanwhile, Daniel Carr of Pikes Peak, in a 47.25, beat out Tigershark Swim Club’s Noah Henry, in 47.26, by one hundredth of a second for silver.

Shaine Casas, swimming unattached for the Woodlands, laid claim to fourth with a 48.43, and he was closely followed by Jolen Griffin (48.64) of Orinda Aquatics. Alvin Jiang of Lakeside Aquatic Club grabbed seventh in 49.34, while Bryce Mefford of the Sierra Marlins finished behind the field with a 58.67.

Women’s 200 Freestyle Relay:

Fort Collins beat out a fast field for a 1:32.01 and for gold, thanks to the combined efforts of Coleen Gillilan (23.40), Kylee Alons (22.19), Zoe Bartel (22.92), and Bailey Kovac (23.50). Palo Alto Stanford finished just behind them in 1:32.57, with the strong team of Grace Zhao (23.28), Ashley Stahmer (23.54), Brooke Schaffer (23.23), and Bailey Kovac (22.52).

Other finishers in the packed top eight included Ozaukee Aquatics (1:32.72), Davis Aquadarts (1:32.98), and Irvine Novaquatics (1:33.32).

Men’s 200 Freestyle Relay:

Scottsdale’s men dominated the relay once again, posting a 1:19.29, the National Age Group Record for 15-18-year-olds. Just shy of the meet record of 1:19.09, the effort was produced by Jack Blake (20.25), Ray Van Deusen (20.15), Parker Hughes (20.13), and Ryan Hoffer (18.76).

The Palo Alto Stanford team of Alex Liang (20.58), Michael Lincoln (20.87), Brian Copley (20.97), and Albert Gwo (19.59) combined for silver and a 1:22.01. They were very closely followed by Irvine Novaquatics (1:22.06), whose team brought together the talents of Sean Slusiewics (20.66), Justin Nguyen (20.24), Ben Blevins-Boor (20.27), and Hunter Hitchens (20.89).

The rest of the close pack included Central Iowa Aquatics (1:22.70), Terrapins Swim Team (1:22.82), and North Texas Nadadores (1:23.45).