TYR Pro Swim Series Westmont, Day Three Prelims: Regan Smith Qualifies First in 200 Fly, 100 Back

Regan Smith -- Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

TYR Pro Swim Series Westmont, Day Three Prelims: Regan Smith Qualifies First in 200 Fly, 100 Back

During the Friday morning session at the TYR Pro Swim Series in Westmont, Ill., Regan Smith followed up a sub-57 performance in the 100 butterfly final by qualifying first in a pair of events, the 200 fly and 100 backstroke. Abbey Weitzeil also claimed first in two events, the 50 freestyle and 50 fly, while Lydia Jacoby took first in the 200 breaststroke. Leon Marchand swam two races, finishing third behind top rival Carson Foster in the 200 fly before taking the top spot in the 200 breast.

Women’s 200 Butterfly

In her first swim of the day, Regan Smith dominated the 200 fly prelims by more than two-and-a-half seconds with a time of 2:09.99. Smith, now training at Arizona State University, owns a best time of 2:05.30 from her silver-medal swim in the 200 fly at the 2021 Olympics. Qualifying second was Texas’ Emma Sticklen, the NCAA champion in the 200-yard fly, in 2:12.62, while another Arizona State-trained swimmer, Lindsay Looney, took third in 2:13.14.

Annemarie Vlaic placed fourth in 2:14.84, with Campbell Stoll (2:16.21), Caroline Bricker (2:16.26), Leah Gingrich (2:16.27) and Leah Polonsky (2:16.32) also qualifying among the top-eight.

Men’s 200 Butterfly

Texas’ Carson Foster, who posted a sub-4:10 swim in the 400 IM Thursday evening while finishing second behind Leon Marchand, topped the field in the 200 fly with a time of 1:57.74. Foster swam a mark of 1:53.67 last July for the fastest time in the United States for 2022 and third-quickest American time ever behind Michael Phelps and Tyler Clary. Among swimmers from all countries, Foster is 13th all-time while Marchand is eighth at 1:53.37, a swim he recorded when winning World Championships silver last year. Marchand qualified for this final in third place at 1:58.69.

Estonia’s Kregor Zirk, third in the 200 free Thursday evening, took second in 1:58.54, while Sun Devil’s Chase Kalisz (1:58.83), Dynamo’s Connor LaMastra (1:58.90) and Cavalier’s Thomas Heilman (1:58.97) also recorded sub-1:59 performances. The Cardinal Aquatics pair of Zach Harting (1:59.12) and Nick Albiero (1:59.49) rounded out the top eight.

Women’s 50 Freestyle

Cal’s Abbey Weitzeil had a resurgent performance at the last Pro Series meet in Fort Lauderdale with wins in the 50 and 100 free. She topped the 50 free heats in 24.75, not far off her 24.40 performance from last month. Louisville’s Gabi Albiero took second in 25.13, followed by Chelsea Piers’ Annam Olasewere (25.37) and Erika Brown (25.42). Brown tied for World Championships bronze in the event last year in 24.38.

Caroline Larsen (25.46), Teresa Ivan (25.49), Natalie Hinds (25.59) and Kristina Paegle (25.59) also got into the championship heat.

Men’s 50 Freestyle

Cal’s Jack Alexy placed second in the 100-yard free and sixth in the 50-yard free during a strong performance at last month’s NCAA Championships, and he finished first in the long course 50 prelims here in 22.24, four hundredths ahead of another NCAA 50 free finalist, Gui Caribe of the University of Tennessee and Brazil. Caribe clocked 22.28, and Worlds silver medalist Michael Andrew took third in 22.38.

Matej Dusa was fourth (22.38), followed by Matt King (22.42). King missed most of this past NCAA season at the University of Virginia, and he is now training at Texas Ford Aquatics. Lithuania’s Jokubas Keblys (22.44), Brazil’s Marcelo Cherighini (22.45) and Bjorn Seeliger of Cal and Sweden (22.48) rounded out the A-final.

Women’s 100 Backstroke

In her second event of the day after dominating the 200 fly heats, Regan Smith was almost two-and-a-half seconds clear of the field in the 100 back. She used a sub-30-second closing 50 to finish in 58.54, just six tenths off her 57.92 winning time from the last Pro Series meet in Fort Lauderdale. Finishing well behind the field was Indiana’s Anna Peplowski, the 200 free winner, in 1:00.97, just ahead of Cal’s Isabelle Stadden (1:01.01) and the Czech Republic’s Simona Kubova (1:01.08).

Wisconsin’s Beata Nelson, second in Thursday’s 100 fly, took fifth in 1:01.22, followed by Elmbrook’s Maggie Wanezek (1:01.81), Texas Ford’s Morgan Scott (1:01.84) and Wisconsin’s Phoebe Bacon (1:02.06).

Men’s 100 Backstroke

It will be a loaded field in the men’s 100 back final, but Arizona State’s Hubert Kos topped prelims by more than a half-second against a who’s who of American stars. Hunter Armstrong, the bronze medalist at the World Championships and world-record holder in the 50 back, took second in 54.61, followed by 50 back world champion Justin Ress. The Mission Viejo swimmer touched in 54.83.

Cal’s Destin Lasco, the NCAA champion in the 200-yard back, took fourth in 54.90, followed by American-record holder and 2016 Olympic champion Ryan Murphy (55.09). Longhorn’s Shaine Casas (55.19), NC State’s Hunter Tapp (55.35) and Tennessee’s Bjoern Kammann (55.55) finished sixth through eighth, respectively.

Women’s 200 Breaststroke

Texas’ Lydia Jacoby, the Olympic champion in the 100 breast, has yet to achieve international success in the 200 breast, but she put up the top time in Friday’s prelims at 2:28.62, one hundredth ahead of Indiana’s Annie Lazor. Lazor, the Olympic bronze medalist in the event, touched in 2:28.63, just ahead of Brazil’s Gabrielle Assis de Silva (2:28.67). Indiana’s Lilly King, the world champion in the event, took fourth in 2:28.85.

Texas’ Anna Elendt took fifth in 2:30.19, just ahead of Singapore’s Letitia Sim (2:30.45). Israel’s Anastasia Gorbenko (2:31.17) and Tennessee’s Alexis Yager (2:32.02) got into the final, with Yager just denying Fox Valley’s Leah Hayes (2:32.19).

Men’s 200 Breaststroke

Arizona State’s Leon Marchand did not swim the 200 breaststroke at the World Championships last year, but he did swim the fastest-ever 200-yard breast at the NCAA Championships last month. In Westmont, Marchand put up the top time in a field where the top five qualifiers were separated by less than a half-second. Marchand clocked 2:13.72, just ahead of Tennessee’s Lyubomir Epitropov (2:13.90) and American Nic Fink (2:13.92).

Amro Al-Wir took fourth in 2:14.01, just ahead of Longhorn’s Will Licon (2:14.17). Indiana teammates Jassen Yep (2:14.31) and Max Reich (2:14.95) took sixth and eighth, respectively, split by Louisville’s Denis Petrashov (2:14.56).

Women’s 50 Butterfly

After leading the way in the 50 free, Abbey Weitzeil came back to finish first in the 50 fly heats in 26.26. And just like in the one-lap freestyle race, Gabi Albiero finished second, with the Louisville swimmer clocking 26.46. Gator Swim Club’s Natalie Hinds (26.56), Wisconsin’s Beata Nelson (26.61) and Tennessee’s Erika Brown (26.85) finished third, fourth and fifth, respectively, with each swimmer reaching their second final of the day.

Katherine Zenick (26.86), Anna Boemer (27.09) and Clarissa Rodrigues (27.17) were the other A-finalists.

Men’s 50 Butterfly

After finishing third in the 50 free prelims, Michael Andrew led the way in the 50 fly heats in 23.53, six hundredths ahead of Longhorn’s Shaine Casas (23.59). Andrew was the Worlds bronze medalist in the 50 fly, one of five medals he won in Budapest. Indiana’s Tomer Frankel took third in 23.71, followed by Missouri’s Clement Secchi (23.78), Indiana’s Marius Kusch (23.83), Texas Ford teammates Matt King (23.87) and Tyler Sesvold (23.89) and Indiana’s Finn Brooks (23.90).

Women’s 400 Freestyle

Leah Smith, already with a win in the 800 free in Westmont, swam a time of 4:10.55 to lead the way in the 400 free by two-and-a-half seconds. Nation’s Capital’s Erin Gemmell finished second in 4:13.10, about one second clear of Julia Mrozinski (4:14.09). Pikes Peak’s Madi Mintenko finished fourth in 4:14.30, with the teenager getting into her second A-final of the meet.

Brazil’s Beatriz Dizotti (4:14.60), Sun Devil’s Sierra Schmidt (4:16.46), Virginia Tech’s Chase Travis (4:16.62) and Turkey’s Deniz Ertan (4:17.78) also finished among the top eight.

Men’s 400 Freestyle

Kieran Smith achieved a come-from-behind win in the 200 free Thursday evening, and the 400 free Olympic bronze medalist placed first in the heats of the eight-lap event in 3:53.16, with 500 free NCAA champion Luke Hobson of Texas taking second in 3:53.50. Turkey’s Batur Unlu finished fourth in 3:53.76, and Texas’ Carson Foster finished fourth in 3:54.60 after leading the way into the 200 fly final earlier in the session.

Ohio State’s Charlie Clark took fifth in 3:55.06, with Sun Devil’s Jay Litherland sixth (3:55.59). The last two spots in the final went to Texas A&M’s Bathuhan Filiz (3:55.90) and France’s Tommylee Camblong (3:56.02), with St. Petersburg’s Bobby Finke just locked out of the top-eight with his time of 3:56.88.

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