Levenia Sim Breaks Regan Smith’s NAG Record (13-14) in 100-Yard Backstroke at NCSA Championships


Levenia Sim Breaks Regan Smith’s NAG Record (13-14) in 100-Yard Backstroke at NCSA Championships

As the Olympic Games in Tokyo approach, the United States’ Regan Smith is one of the sport’s most-watched athletes as a multi-medal threat. But on Thursday night, Smith’s name was erased from the National Age Group record book as 14-year-old Levenia Sim blew away the field in the 100-yard backstroke at the National Club Swimming Association Spring Championships (NSCA) in Orlando.

Representing TNT Swimming, Sim clocked in at 51.03 to narrowly break Smith’s NAG record, which had stood at 51.09 since 2016. Sim went out in 24.49 and came home in 26.54 to win the race by more than a second over Margaret Wanezek (52.19). Sim won the 50 backstroke on Wednesday night, and a run at the NAG standard was expected.

Already the winner of the 200 backstroke earlier in the meet, Josh Zuchowski added the 100 backstroke crown to his collection when he registered a time of 46.86 to beat Luke Barr (46.97) to the wall.

It was nothing but NOVA of Virginia dominance in the women’s 400 individual medley as the club occupied the top-three positions in the event. Zoe Dixon prevailed in 4:08.06, followed by twin sisters Grace Sheble (4:09.45) and Caroline Sheble (4:10.47) in second and third place. Dixon gained command of the race early on, splitting 57.27 for the opening butterfly leg.

A pair of 16-year-olds battled for the women’s 200 freestyle title and it was Claire Tuggle who came away with the victory in 1:45.86. Zoe Skirboll, best known for her breaststroke skills, demonstrated her range by placing second in 1:46.50. On the men’s side, Mason Mathias was the lone swimmer under 1:37, winning the event in 1:36.64.

The men’s 400 individual medley was the tightest race of the night as Michael Cooper edged Giovanni Linscheer by the slimmest of margins, 3:48.07 to 3:48.08. Cooper split 25.61 on the final 50 yards, which proved to be the difference as Linscheer was 25.79 for his final 50.