US Olympic Trials: Cundiff Takes Win For William & Mary; Jack Armstrong Out-Touches Field in 50 Freestyle

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Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

21-year-old Missy Cundiff of William and Mary raced to the win on Monday night at the 2021 US Olympic Trials in Omaha in the 50 freestyle with a 25.46, lowering her prelims team by 0.03 as she solidified her spot in Wave II next week June 13 – 20. Cundiff, who had an emotional roller coaster of a year with William & Mary cutting its swimming and diving program before ultimately reinstating, swam a lifetime best after coming into this meet at 25.9. She time trialed the 50 yesterday and swam a 25.5, before coming out tonight to swim a 25.4 and advance to Wave II.

Cundiff finished ahead of 16-year-old Camille Spink of Nation’s Capital Swim Club, who won the 100 free earlier in the meet, and 15-year-old Anna Moesch of StreamLine who tied for second at 25.54. Both of them swam lifetime best times, putting themselves in a tie for 24th all-time in the 15-16 age group in this event as both of them will stay in Omaha to race this event.

Ohio State’s Taylor Petrak finished in fourth at 25.59, just off her time this morning by 0.01, as the race came down to the last stroke with the top seven separated by less than two tenths of a second. Indiana’s Kristina Paegle, who was second earlier in the 100 free, finished in fifth at 25.60, moving up to tied for 41st in the 17-18 age group. Kailyn Winter and Kobie Melton, who was second in the 100 back at these Olympic Trials, tied for sixth at 25.65.

Results:

  1. Missy Cundiff, 25.46
  2. Camille Spink, 25.54
  3. Anna Moesch, 25.54
  4. Taylor Petrak, 25.59
  5. Kristina Paegle, 25.60
  6. Kailyn Winter, 25.65
  7. Kobie Melton, 25.65
  8. Elise Garcia, 25.93

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Houston Bridge’s Jack Armstrong followed up his top seeded swim from this morning in the 50 freestyle, dropping another two tenths to out-touch the field at 22.55. Armstrong, who raced at the 2019 World Juniors, will race next week at Wave II Olympic Trials and will be joined by 18-year-old Eric Anderson of Northern Lights in North Dakota.

Anderson raced to second at 22.57, putting himself in a tie for 16th all-time in the 17-18 age group. Anderson hails from North Dakota and will head south for college to South Dakota State as he will get the valuable experiencing of racing in Wave II. Anderson dropped a big best time as he was a 22.8 this morning in the heats which was also a best time.

There was little margin for error in the final with the top four separated by 0.10 as Towson’s Matthew Essing (22.63) and TOPS Swimming’s Chris Guiliano (22.65) finished in third and fourth with both of them swimming faster than this morning. The 17-year-old Guiliano, who is committed to Notre Dame, is now tied for 20th all-time in the 17-18 age group.

29-year-old Danny Tucker finished in fifth at 22.83 as he was as fast as a 22.3 all the way back at the 2013 US Open as an undergrad for Purdue.

Queens’ Skyler Cook-Weeks was sixth at 22.91, just 0.01 over his prelims time at Olympic Trials this morning.

Results:

  1. Jack Armstrong, 22.55
  2. Eric Anderson, 22.57
  3. Matthew Essing, 22.63
  4. Chris Guiliano, 22.65
  5. Danny Tucker, 22.83
  6. Skyler Cook-Weeks, 22.91
  7. Caleb Duncan, 23.00
  8. Brandon Hamblin, 23.02