Speedo Winter Juniors: Will Heck, Baylor Nelson Set for 200 Breast Showdown in Greensboro

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Will Heck; Photo Courtesy: FHSAA Instagram (@fhsaa)

Speedo Winter Juniors: Will Heck, Baylor Nelson Set for 200 Breast Showdown in Greensboro

The number 1:56.01 will loom large for both Will Heck and Baylor Nelson in the final of the 200 breaststroke at the Speedo Winter Junior Championships East in Greensboro Saturday night.

It’s the time that Heck posted in prelims Saturday morning, his best by more than a second, to grab the top seed in finals on the night’s final evening Saturday. It’s also the best team that Nelson, who won the 200 individual medley on Thursday in a meet record time, entered with as his seed time. Nelson owns the second seed at 1:57.90 in what could be an intriguing two-man joust.

Nelson was coming off a swim in the 200 backstroke in which he would be the third seed with a time of 1:44.07. It was just a second back of the pace set by Caleb Maldari (1:43.04) with Sam Powe (1:43.44) in the middle.

The top seed in the 100 free went to Daniel Diehl, who set the pace at 43.58, dropping a half-second from his seed time. Kaii Winkler is second at 43.68, with Kamal Muhammad and Andres Dupont Cabrera also cracking 44 seconds.

Thomas Heilman was the headliner of the morning with his 13-14 national age-group record in the 200 fly in 1:43.97. He’s the top seed in that final by nearly two seconds, with Sebastien Sergile (1:45.70) leading a cluster of four swimmers that got under 1:46. Both 1,650 freestyle events plus 400 medley relays are also Saturday night.

On the girls side, Rye Ulett carried the top seed in the 200 back out of prelims after going 1:54.15, some two seconds shy of her best time. Second is Catie Chaote in 1:55.44, with Jo Jo Ramey in third. Five swimmers got under 1:56.

The 200 breast will be an all-Grace battle, with Grace Rainey taking the top seed at 2:11.87. Gracie Weyant (2:13.08) is the prime chaser. Alex Shackell led the way in the 200 fly at 1:57.23, just edging Hannah Bellard (1:57.71). Shackell was also sixth in the 100 free, where the top seed went to Anna Moesch in 48.39. The next three finishers were spaced at .02-second intervals starting with second-place Erika Pelaez’s 49.41, followed by Kristi McEnroe and Katherine Helms.

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