Torri Huske, Claire Curzan Lead Stanford Women During First Night of NC State Invite; Arizona State Men Shine

Torri Huske -- Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Torri Huske, Claire Curzan Lead Stanford Women During First Night of NC State Invite; Arizona State Men Shine

Two of the best sprinters in the United States are now the forces behind the Stanford Cardinal women’s swim team, and on the first night of the NC State Invitational, both swimmers won individual races while combining for a pair of relay top finishes. In the women’s 200 IM, Torri Huske swam the fastest time in the country while Claire Curzan and Huske each swam top-five national marks in the 50 freestyle.

Huske clocked 1:53.37 in the 200 IM, the fastest time in the country so far this season. Her best time of 1:51.81 helped her to a runnerup finish behind Alex Walsh at last year’s NCAA Championships. Duke’s Sarah Foley placed second in 1:54.74, moving her to third nationally behind Huske and Georgia’s Zoie Hartman, while NC State’s Grace Sheble took third in 1:57.37.

Huske was back in the pool one event later for the 50 free, and it was a Stanford sweep, with Curzan winning in 21.55, Huske taking second in 21.63 and Taylor Ruck clocking 21.93 for third. Curzan ranks fifth in the event nationally while Huske’s 21.54 relay leadoff from earlier in the night ranks fourth behind Gretchen WalshMaggie Mac Neil and Kate Douglass.

Huske, Ruck, Emma Wheal and Curzan won the 200 free relay in 1:25.90, the top time in the country and a mark which would have been good for third at last year’s NCAA Championships. Curzan led the way wit ha 21.15 anchor split. NC State’s Katharine BerkoffKylee Alons, Heather MacCausland and Abby Arens placed second in 1:27.88, and Penn State’s Mark BrinkerEmma HarveyEllie Tiskus and Liv Jack took third (1:30.31).

The Stanford women also swam the country’s top time so far with a 3:26.97 in the 400 medley relay. Curzan led off in 50.32, beating 100-yard back American-record holder Berkoff (51.32) by almost a second, and she combined with Sam Tadder, Huske and Ruck for a 3:26.97. Huske split 49.38 on the fly leg. Berkoff, Andrea Podmanikova, Alons and Arens finished in 3:29.85, and Duke’s team of Emma ShuppertKaelyn GridleyAleyna Ozkan and Foley took third in 3:33.03.

The win in the 500 free went to Arizona State’s Lindsay Looney in 4:40.71, followed by the Stanford duo of Morgan Tankersley (4:41.87) and Aurora Roghair (4:41.91).

On the men’s side, ASU’s Leon Marchand posted the standout swim of the night with his 1:39.28 200 IM, while his teammate Julian Hill won the 500 free wire-to-wire with a final time of 4:13.69. NC State’s Ross Dant (4:14.29) and ASU’s Andrew Gray (4:15.15) rounded out the top three. In the men’s 50 free, NC State’s David Curtiss won a tight battle with ASU’s Jack Dolan, 18.95 to 18.99, with the Sun Devils’ Max McCuster third (19.31).

In the men’s 200 free relay, the Sun Devils’ team of Dolan, Grant House, Marchand and McCuster won with a time of 1:15.30, two hundredths ahead of Tennessee (1:15.32) for the country’s top time. All four swimmers split under 19. Stanford’s team of Luke MaurerJonny AffeldLeon MacAlister and Rafael Gu placed second in 1:17.68, and ASU’s B-team of Cody BybeeJonny KulowChristian Osterndorf and Tiago Behar finished third in 1:18.09.

At the end of the night, the Sun Devils moved the forefront of the national rankings in another relay as Dolan, Marchand, McCusker and House went 3:02.85 for a three-second win in the 400 medley relay. In a nod to Marchand’s incredible versatility, the IM star chipped in a 50.85 on the breaststroke leg. ASU made it a 1-2 finish here with the team of Owen McDonaldJohn HeaphyAlexander Colson and Patrick Sammon taking second (3:05.91), just ahead of Stanford’s MacAlister, Zhier FanEthan Hu and Maurer (3:06.38).

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