Swimming World Presents – How They Train: University of Richmond’s Maggie Purcell – Sponsored by NZCordz

Swimming World March 2021 - How They Train with University of Richmond Swimmer Maggie Purcell
University of Richmond swimmer Maggie Purcell [PHOTO BY KEITH LUCAS]

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Swimming World Presents – How They Train: University of Richmond’s Maggie Purcell

By Michael J. Stott

Sponsored By NZCordz

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Maggie Purcell, a USA Swimming Scholastic All-American, landed on the University of Richmond campus in the fall of 2018 as collegeswimming.com’s 11th-ranked swimmer in the state of New York.

“Maggie has talent and growing confidence,” says University of Richmond coach Matt Barany of his junior swimmer. “She has four very efficient strokes and amazing strength. One day, she actually pulled a power rack into the pool. Her initial race strategy her freshman year was to crush the water with her strength. As a sophomore, we tried to distract her from this strategy. We encouraged her to make the front half of her races more ‘artistic’ by being efficient and effortless. This strategy offered her confidence and reserves for the second half of her races,” he says.

“Having four talented strokes, I favor her IMs, but she’d probably identify herself as a breaststroker. The 200 breast can be formulaic with stroke counts and cadence—this has helped her swim her way into the race. Her short course walls are very good. She has taken it upon herself to improve this on her own accord. At practice, she’d gladly go underwater and race our dolphin kickers.”

All of that was on display at the February 2020 Atlantic 10 Conference Championships. She won the 200 breast (2:12.84) and placed second in the 400 IM (4:17.09) and fifth in the 200 IM (2:00.42) while contributing legs on four top-three relay finishes.

At the end of the truncated 2019-20 season, she occupied four spots on the Spiders best times list: 100 breast (6th/1:03.15), 200 breast (2nd/2:12.84), 200 IM (4th/2:00.42) and 400 IM (4th/4:17.09).

“Maggie is also one of our all-time best flutter kickers,” says Barany. “We do a lot of kicking, especially in the first six to eight weeks of the season. She sets the tone, and she brings others with her. She can hold 1:15-1:16 range for 16 x 100s @ 1:45. Once we see this level of kicking, we transition over to more stroke-specific kicking.

“Some would call her stubborn, but I think she’s straight-up bold. As we tried to develop her weakest stroke, we’d train her backstroke with Hannah Gouger (1:53.5 200 back), and Maggie would do everything she could to hang with her. Maggie doesn’t know her limit. She can drop 4:35s for 8 x 400 back @ 5:30. That’s pretty good.

“Another thing: Maggie is eternally grateful. After every practice, she looks me in the eye and says, ‘Thank you.’ It doesn’t matter how many practices a coach attends, these are the two most gratifying words. She’s one of a kind, and Richmond is lucky to have her,” says Barany.

SAMPLE SET
400 IM Prep (January 2021)
6x:
• 2 x 50 dive fly @ :30 rest after each 50 fly (Rounds 1-2: in Sox untimed; Round 3: 26.8 + 27.0; Round 4: 26.6 + 27.0; Round 5: 26.9 + 27.2; Round 6: 26.8 + 27.0)
• 400 back (Rounds 1-2: 4:35, 4:38); 2 x 200 back @ :15 rest after each 200 (Round 3: 2:14 + 2:15; Round 4: 2:16 + 2:16); 4 x 100 back @ :10 rest after each 100 (Round 5: 1:06, 1:07, 1:07, 1:07; Round 6: 1:05, 1:07, 1:08, 1:08)

“There would be a lot of conversation prior to this set. The first two rounds of fly would include drag sox with a huge emphasis on using the hips for locomotion. Once the sox are off, we’d encourage Maggie to execute her kick/stroke count while swimming fly for distance. This gives us a chance to measure her velocity. She can cruise these in high 26 with little effort—we’d let her loose on backstroke. No limits on back.

“Over the years at Richmond, I’ve coached quality IMers—Jessica Witt, (2x All-American, 400 IM), Lauren Beaudreau (NCAA 200 IM and 400 IM), Mali Kobelja (2012 Olympic Trials 200 IM). I learned a lot from them, and one of our tenets is to merge the four strokes at season’s end when athletes are highly coordinated and execution is seamless. We don’t do a lot of IM sets inclusive of the four strokes.”

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Swimming World March 2021 - Shane Casas - COVER[PHOTO CREDIT: CONNOR TRIMBLE]

 

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Swimming World March 2021 Issue

FEATURES

012 THIS SHOULD BE WELL WORTH THE WAIT
by Dan D’Addona
A year ago, all eyes were on Cal and Texas in what looked to be one of the greatest men’s NCAA Championship duels ever. Sadly, the COVID-19 pandemic wiped out that showdown, but spirits are running high one year later—not only for that much anticipated Cal-Texas confrontation, but for the simple fact that college swimmers will again be able to come together and compete at a national championship.

014 YES, VIRGINIA, NOW IS THE TIME TO MAKE YOUR MOVE
by Dan D’Addona
For years, Stanford and Cal have been battling each other for national supremacy at women’s NCAAs, with the Cardinal and Golden Bears finishing 1-2 in the last three championships. Before that, Cal had put together four team titles since 2009. But in 2021, look for Virginia to make its move—not only as a new rival, but quite possibly as a new champion!

016 ALL SYSTEMS GO…FOR NOW!
by Andy Ross
Although the NCAA Division III and NAIA had canceled their championship swimming and diving meets in early February, NCAA  Division II was still a “go,” thereby preserving the possibility for Queens University of Charlotte to pursue its sixth straight men’s and women’s team titles.

018 DOC’S GUYS
by John Lohn
In the late 1960s into the early 1970s, Doc Counsilman’s Indiana University swimming program was a focal point of the sport. His legendary teams were a dominant presence not just on the collegiate scene, but also on the national—and international—stage.

021 THE “MOUNT RUSHMORE” OF NCAA DIVISION I SWIMMING
by Andy Ross
If there were a sculpture made of the top American NCAA Division I swimmers similar to the one depicting four U.S. Presidents on Mount Rushmore, Tracy Caulkins, Natalie Coughlin, Pablo Morales and John Naber would be worthy honorees. No other swimmer has won more NCAA D-I individual titles than those four.

024 TAKEOFF TO TOKYO: OLYMPIC RIVALRIES OF YESTERYEAR
by John Lohn
Rivalries have always defined the sport. Michael Phelps vs. Ian Crocker. Gary Hall Jr. vs. Alexander Popov. Shirley Babashoff vs. East Germany. These are just a few rivalries that stand out and should long be remembered. But what about the rivalries from the early days of swimming? As our “Takeoff to Tokyo” series continues, Swimming World takes a look at some of these rivalries from yesteryear.

026 WHO IS THIS GUY?
by David Rieder
Before the summer of 2019, Texas A&M’s Shaine Casas had been swimming under the radar. But if his performances since then are any indication, the end results could be spectacular. His coaches see his potential as basically unlimited, and recent history makes it tough to disagree. As for Casas, he has similarly lofty expectations for himself.

029 ISHOF: THE VALUE OF SWIMMING IN WAR
by Bruce Wigo
In the early 1900s, there was scarcely an American alive who was unfamiliar with the name of Frederick Funston. He was the most decorated and celebrated hero of the Philippine-American War (1899-1902)—famous in military and swimming history for his willingness to have his men swim across rivers, under fire, when, according to press reports, “They couldn’t otherwise get at the enemy quickly enough to suit them.”

COACHING

041 SPECIAL SETS: BOWE KNOWS SWIMMING
by Michael J. Stott
Bowe Becker has trained with Sandpipers of Nevada coaches Ron Aitken and Cutter Haupt as well as Kelly Kremer at the University of Minnesota (2015-19). The eight-time NCAA All-American, Big Ten champion and conference record holder in the 50-100 free now swims with the ISL’s Cali Condors. Coach Haupt provides some sample workouts from November 2014, which were done prior to that year’s December sectionals.

043 Q&A WITH COACH MATT BARANY
by Michael J. Stott

044 HOW THEY TRAIN MAGGIE PURCELL
by Michael J. Stott

TRAINING

040 DRYSIDE TRAINING:  PULLING POWER
by J.R. Rosania

JUNIOR SWIMMER

046 UP & COMERS: LIAM CUSTER
by Shoshanna Rutemiller

COLUMNS

008 A VOICE FOR THE SPORT

009 DID YOU KNOW: ABOUT PRINCE DABULAMANZI & THE BATTLE OF ISANDLWANA?

011 THE OFFICIAL WORD

032 2021 SWIM CAMP DIRECTORY

047 HASTY HIGH POINTERS

048 GUTTERTALK

049 PARTING SHOT

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