Michael Andrew Cranks Out 1:56.84 in 200 IM to Cap Indy Star Turn; Alex Walsh & Kate Douglass Excel


Michael Andrew Cranks Out 1:56.84 in 200 IM to Cap Indy Star Turn; Alex Walsh & Kate Douglass Excel

Consider his visit to Indianapolis a major success.

Coming off personal-best performances in the 100-meter breaststroke and 100 butterfly, Michael Andrew completed a 3-for-3 run at the TYR Pro Series in Indianapolis by winning the 200 individual medley on Saturday night. Unchallenged from the start, Andrew dipped under the 1:57 barrier with a time of 1:56.84. Grant House was second in 2:00.30.

Andrew generated a commanding lead on the opening butterfly leg, splitting 24.09 and went through the midway point and the backstroke leg in 53.87. After a breaststroke split of 33.48, Andrew came home with a freestyle split of 29.49. While he will need to be faster on the closing leg at the Olympic Trials, that freestyle split was a step forward for Andrew, who has struggled to finish the race strong in the past.

By adding a victory in the 200 medley, Andrew wrapped up a meet in which he was the undoubted star. The trip to Indy also featured a 58.67 effort in the 100 breaststroke, which just missed the American record by .03, and a 50.80 showing in the 100 butterfly, his first time under the 51-second barrier.

“I think of all the races (I’ve swum) this weekend, I was most disappointed with this one,” Andrew said. “This evening was a little hard to get in the right frame of mind. I felt a little tired mentally. That race hurt a lot more, but I’m happy with some of the adjustments we were able to make and I’m looking forward to these next three weeks and getting ready for Trials.”

The women’s 200 medley came down to a meeting between University of Virginia teammates Alex Walsh and Kate Douglass. Walsh ultimately claimed the win, going 2:10.67, but Douglass wasn’t far behind as a hard-charging freestyle leg brough her to the wall in 2:10.74. Less than 20 minutes earlier, Douglass won the 50 freestyle in 24.54.

Although Melanie Margalis is the frontrunner, the 200 medley will be an intriguing event at the Olympic Trials, with a number of competitors in the mix for invitations to Tokyo. Going 2:10 at this stage of preparation bodes well for the UVA duo.

“I saw (Douglass) right there next to me the whole time. I knew she was going to be there, so I had to dig deep to get my hand on the wall first,” Walsh said. “The great thing about racing her is that she pushes me—especially in practice, we really push each other. I really like having her there and I don’t think I would have gone as fast if I didn’t have her there.”

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