Kate Douglass Continues Virginia’s Momentum With Narrow Win Over MacNeil in 50 Free

kate-douglass
Photo Courtesy: NCAA Media

Virginia kept the ball rolling on Thursday night at the 2021 NCAA Division I Women’s Swimming & Diving Championships in Greensboro as sophomore Kate Douglass won the third straight event for the Cavaliers tonight. But it was not a walk in the park for Douglass as she swam a 21.13 to just out-touch Michigan’s Maggie MacNeil at 21.17 as those two are on a collision course all weekend and will race all three of their individual events side by side.

Douglass has had a lot of hype around her name and is a big reason why this Virginia team is so dominant at the moment as last year was expected to be her coming out party but the meet was unfortunately cancelled.

“I definitely didn’t think I would go that fast today. Going a best time twice today was really great,” Douglass said after the race. “I knew it wasn’t going to be an easy race because Maggie is really fast and there were a lot of other really fast girls in the field, but I tried to focus on my own swim and hoped that would do the job.”

With that behind her, Douglass did not miss a beat, and although she dropped the 200 IM in favor of this event, she still won the national title and is expected to contend in her other two events – the 100 fly and 100 free.

Earlier in the night, Douglass put herself third all-time in the 50 freestyle with her 21.0 in leading off Virginia’s 200 free relay that finished second as her swim in the individual 50 is her second fastest time of her career, coming in with a 21.4 best time. MacNeil is now tied for fourth all-time with Stanford’s Simone Manuel.

Missouri’s Sarah Thompson scored her own best time in the 50 free with a 21.42 as NC State’s Kylee Alons was fourth at 21.51 and Katharine Berkoff was eighth at 21.96 to put the Wolfpack in third place overall ahead of Ohio State.

Thompson is now 13th all-time in the 50 freestyle with her swim.

North Carolina’s Grace Countie (21.60), Alabama’s Kalia Antoniou (21.85) and Northwestern’s Maddie Smith (21.92) also swam in the championship final in fifth, sixth and seventh place.

All-Time Rankings:

  1. 20.90, Abbey Weitzeil, California, 2019
  2. 21.03, Erika Brown, Tennessee, 2020
  3. 21.09, Kate Douglass, Virginia, 2021
  4. 21.17, Simone Manuel, Stanford, 2017
  5. 21.17, Maggie MacNeil, Michigan, 2021
  6. 21.19, Anna Hopkin, Arkansas, 2019
  7. 21.21, Olivia Smoliga, Georgia, 2016
  8. 21.27, Lara Jackson, Arizona, 2009
  9. 21.28, Liz Li, Ohio State, 2018
  10. 21.32, Farida Osman, California, 2016
  11. 21.34, Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace, Auburn, 2011
  12. 21.41, Gretchen Walsh, Nashville, 2020
  13. 21.42, Sarah Thompson, Missouri, 2021
  14. 21.43, Torri Huske, Arlington, 2020

 Event 5  Women 50 Yard Freestyle
=========================================================================
         NCAA: N 20.90  12/5/2019 Abbey Weitzeil, California
         Meet: M 21.02  3/21/2019 Abbey Weitzeil, California
     American: A 20.90  12/5/2019 Abbey Weitzeil, California
      US Open: O 20.90  12/5/2019 Abbey Weitzeil, California
         Pool: P 21.09  3/18/2021 Kate Douglass, Virginia
    Name                 Year School            Prelims     Finals Points 
=========================================================================
                       === Championship Final ===                        
 
  1 Douglass, Kate         SO Virginia            21.21      21.13   20  
    r:+0.65  10.33        21.13 (10.80)
  2 MacNeil, Maggie        JR Michigan            21.58      21.17   17  
    r:+0.65  10.43        21.17 (10.74)
  3 Thompson, Sarah        SR Missouri            21.61      21.42   16  
    r:+0.67  10.32        21.42 (11.10)
  4 Alons, Kylee           JR NC State            21.50      21.51   15  
    r:+0.61  10.35        21.51 (11.16)
  5 Countie, Grace         JR UNC                 21.92      21.60   14  
    r:+0.69  10.32        21.60 (11.28)
  6 Antoniou, Kalia        JR Alabama             21.73      21.85   13  
    r:+0.68  10.77        21.85 (11.08)
  7 Smith, Maddie          SR Northwestern        22.03      21.92   12  
    r:+0.63  10.49        21.92 (11.43)
  8 Berkoff, Katharine     SO NC State            21.98      21.96   11  
    r:+0.70  10.76        21.96 (11.20)
 
                        === Consolation Final ===                        
 
  9 Keil, Megan            JR Missouri            22.14      21.87    9  
    r:+0.62  10.52        21.87 (11.35)
 10 Gantriis, Emily        FR California          22.18      21.90    7  
    r:+0.65  10.70        21.90 (11.20)
 11 Dobler, Kaitlyn        FR USC                 22.11      21.92    6  
    r:+0.63  10.60        21.92 (11.32)
 12 Parker, Maxine         FR Georgia             22.17      21.96    5  
    r:+0.73  10.79        21.96 (11.17)
 13 Wheal, Emma            SO Stanford            22.15      21.97    4  
    r:+0.69  10.70        21.97 (11.27)
 14 Albiero, Gabi          FR Louisville          22.22      22.27    3  
    r:+0.64  10.80        22.27 (11.47)
 15 Mack, Katie            SO Florida             22.22      22.35    1.5
    r:+0.68  10.59        22.35 (11.76)
 15 Petrak, Taylor         SR Ohio St             22.22      22.35    1.5
    r:+0.64  10.71        22.35 (11.64)
Women - Team Rankings - Through Event 5                 
 
  1. Virginia                          150 
  2. California                        114
  3. NC State                           84 
  4. Ohio St                            76.5
  5. Georgia                            73 
  5. Texas                              73
  7. Alabama                            72 
  8. Stanford                           62
  9. Missouri                           55 
 10. Michigan                           48
 11. Kentucky                           45 
 12. Florida                            44.5
 13. UNC                                38 
 14. Louisville                         36
 15. Wisconsin                          23 
 15. Tennessee                          23
 17. Northwestern                       18  
 18. Indiana                            12
 19. Virginia Tech                      11 
 20. Southern California                10
 20. Texas A&M                          10 
 22. Nebraska                            3
 22. Akron                               3 
 24. Houston                             1