ISL Regular Season Report: The Select Group of Four-Time Event Winners

Zach Apple (photo: Mike Lewis)
DC Trident's Zach Apple; Photo Courtesy: Mike Lewis/ISL

Balancing times and wins in the International Swimming League creates ready-made intrigue within the league. While wins are incentivized via points and team scores, the times remain important to swimmers, and the jackpot mechanism makes the times relative to the field all the more vital.

While the ISL has its ratings and MVP points and all of those numbers that it can flash across the screens, the bedrock is the head-to-head. Ten regular-season matches have given swimmers four matches apiece, plenty of time to collect points and state their cases for the semifinals and the finals.

At the end of the regular season, nine men and eight women can say they are unbeaten in a single event, going 4-for-4 in the regular season. The same goes for five relays. Before the semifinals start, it’s worth recognizing them for a stellar regular season.

A couple of notes: Among the names you won’t see in the 4-for-4 club are those that have been strategically rested. Energy Standard’s Sarah Sjostrom is not in there, having missed a meet due to an injury. Adam Peaty is not on there, the London Roar sprinter rested in Match 10. The only female swimmers from the Cali Condors is Lilly King in the 100 breast, due in large part to the versatility of their swimmers.

Yui Ohashi (photo: Mike Lewis)

Tokyo’s Yui Ohashi; Photo Courtesy: MIKE LEWIS / ISL

There’s also the matchup question. You’ll see that the Energy Standard and London Roar each have four wins in the women’s 400 free relay. That’s because the schedule hasn’t paired them together in a meet yet. Kelsey Wog of the Toronto Titans has four wins in the 200 breast, but she holds just the fourth-fastest time in the event and didn’t swim against King, a three-time winner and the ISL record-holder. (You’ll see below that being a 4-for-4 winner doesn’t necessarily denote the fastest swimmer in an event this season.)

Every club has at least one 4-for-4 swimmer. The nine men hail from nine different teams, all but the London Roar. The leader in terms of most 4-for-4 swimmers is, interestingly, the expansion Tokyo Frog Kings with four.

Here’s the full list of 4-for-4 swimmers (* holds the top time in the event; ^ set the ISL record in 2020):

4-for-4 Winners in ISL regular-season

  • Marco Koch, NY Breakers – men’s 200 breast^
  • Emre Sakci, Team Iron – men’s 50 breast^
  • Shane Ryan, Toronto Titans – men’s 50 back
  • Danas Rapsys, Energy Standard – men’s 400 free^
  • Zach Apple, DC Trident – men’s 100 free
  • Tom Shields, LA Current – men’s 200 fly*
  • Caeleb Dressel, Cali Condors – men’s 100 IM^
  • Szebasztian Szabo, Aqua Centurions – men’s 50 fly
  • Kosuke Hagino, Tokyo Frog Kings – men’s 400 IM*
  • LA Current men’s medley relay
  • Kelsey Wog, Toronto Titans – women’s 200 breast
  • Leah Smith, Tokyo Frog Kings – women’s 400 free
  • Suzuka Hasegawa, Tokyo Frog Kings – women’s 200 fly^
  • Kylie Masse, Toronto Titans – women’s 100 back
  • Siobhan Haughey, Energy Standard – women’s 200 free^
  • Beryl Gastaldello, LA Current – women’s 50 fly
  • Lilly King, Cali Condors – women’s 100 breast*
  • Yui Ohashi, Tokyo Frog Kings – women’s 400 IM
  • Cali Condors women’s medley relay
  • Energy Standard women’s free relay
  • London Roar women’s free relay
  • Energy Standard mixed relay^

For good measure, the following swimmers won an event three times each.

Factoring both lists, Caeleb Dressel has at least three wins in four different events. Lilly King is the only other swimmer with at least three wins in more than two events. Olivia Smoliga, Chad le Clos, Danas Rapsys, Yui Ohashi, Ryan Murphy, Beryl Gastaldello and Tom Shields have all won at least three times in multiple events.

ISL three-time event winners, by team

  • Aqua Centurions: Men’s 400 free relay
  • Cali Condors: Caeleb Dressel (100 fly, 50 free, 100 free), Radoslaw Kawecki (100 back), Townley Haas (200 free), Beata Nelson (200 back), Lilly King (200 breast, 100 breast), Melanie Margalis (200 IM), Olivia Smoliga (50 back, 100 back), Hali Flickinger (200 fly), men’s 400 free relay
  • Energy Standard: Chad Le Clos (100 fly, 200 fly), Evgeny Rylov (100 back), Florent Manaudou (50 free), Danas Rapsys (200 free), Ilya Shymanovich (100 breast), Sarah Sjostrom (50 free, 100 free), men’s 400 medley relay
  • LA Current: Tom Shields (100 fly), Ryan Murphy (100 back, 50 back), Beryl Gastaldello (100 free)
  • London Roar: Kira Toussaint (100 back)
  • NY Breakers: Kasia Wasick (50 free)
  • Team Iron: Marco Orsi (100 IM), Nicholas Santos (50 fly), David Verraszto (400 IM), Ranomi Kromowidjojo (50 fly)
  • Tokyo Frog Kings: Yui Ohashi (200 IM), Runa Imai (100 IM)
  • Toronto Titans: Anton McKee (200 breast), Lisa Bratton (200 back)

1 comment

  1. avatar

    LA current men’s medley undefeated

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