The 2017 Short Course YMCA National Championships start Monday evening in Greensboro, NC. The meet will likely see a few familiar teams at the top of the rankings and a number of familiar names and national record holders returning to the top of the podium.
Among those swimmers who repeatedly find themselves at the top of the rankings, here are four swimmers to watch next week.
York YMCA’s Courtney Harnish has made a notable impact on YMCA swimming. The now senior has her name etched on five short course YMCA National records: the 200, 400, and 800 freestyle relays and the 500 freestyle and 200 butterfly.
Harnish enters this year’s meet as the top seed in four events: the 200, 500, and 1650 freestyle and 200 butterfly. She’s also the second seed in the 1000, only behind her younger teammate Leah Braswell, and is also entered 11th in the 200 backstroke. She’ll have to scratch down to race only four of those events.
The University of Georgia commit‘s closest competition will likely come from Caitlin Tycz in the 200 butterfly. The USC commit from Bath Area is seeded just a second behind Harnish. Tycz took down the 100 butterfly National Record last year and edged Harnish for the title in that event. Tycz returns as the top seed in the 100 butterfly.
Greater Spartanburg’s Sydney Baker is in the mix for a National Title in a number of events. The UNC commit is the top seed in the 200 IM and the 200 breaststroke. She’s also entered third in the 400 IM and second in the 100 breaststroke.
Baker is entered just four tenths behind Cheshire’s Brooke Perrotta in the 100 breaststroke. She’s within striking distance of Boise’s Abbey Erwin, and future UNC teammate Mary O Soule (Western North Carolina) in the 400 IM.
Fanwood Scotch Plains Relays
The women from Fanwood Scotch Plains enter the meet with three top relay seeds: the 200 and 400 medley relay and the 400 freestyle relay.
At last year’s meet the team touched third in the 400 freestyle relay, with a team of two 15, a 16, and a 17 year old so that whole team should return in their quest for first. Last year’s 200 medley squad was disqualified while the 400 medley relay team touched tenth.
Door County YMCA’s Maxwell McHugh heads to Greensboro leading the way in both breaststroke events. He’ll also be a factor in the 200 IM, entering the event with the fourth fastest time.
McHugh set the National record in both breaststrokes last year. He’s already seeded three seconds faster than he went in last year’s 200 IM final where he finished ninth.
While McHugh has solid leads entering both breaststrokes Eau Claire Wisconsin’s Paul DeLakis is second seed to him in both events. DeLakis is also top seed in both IMs.
Countryside Ralph Stolle’s Grant House is also in the mix with McHugh and DeLakis in the breaststroke events. House is also second seed in the 200 IM.
The Arizona State commit is far ahead of the field in the 200 freestyle. House won the event last year. He’s seeded two seconds faster than he went last year and a second under the National Record. After a successful Ohio high school state meet, House should be on track to take down that 1:35.66 mark.
The team from Sarasota has the fastest time in the 400 and 800 freestyle relay and 400 medley relay. The team has an impressive lead margin in the 400 freestyle relay where nobody is within four seconds of them. In the meet’s longest relay, Sarasota leads the way by eight seconds.
The Sharks set the National Record in the 800 freestyle relay last year and won the 400 medley relay by a slim margin in 2016.
The full psych sheets are available here.