USA Swimming Grand Prix, Long Beach: Day Four Finals; Vendt Just Misses Another American Record

LONG BEACH, California, January 21. ERIK Vendt's incredible meet thus far has surprisingly overshadowed four titles from Club Wolverine teammate Kaitlin Sandeno and a near triple from Michael Phelps. Vendt started the meet strong with an American record in the 1000 free before coming just short of the 1650 free AR tonight at the Long Beach Grand Prix.

Women's 100 fly
Dana Kirk destroyed her personal-best time with a lightning fast effort of 51.92. Previously, she had owned a top time of 52.29 set during the 2006 Pac 10 Championships. The performance also closed the distance towards the top 10 all time for Kirk.

Mary DeScenza rocketed to a second-place effort of 52.04, half-a-second off her lifetime best of 51.56 set at 2006 NCAAs, while Margaret Hoelzer grabbed third with a 53.40.

Men's 100 fly
The times that Michael Phelps goes a best time and it isn't either a world or American record are few and far between. He did just that during the men's 100 fly tonight with a swift time of 45.40. That allowed Phelps to dip below 46 for the first time as he clocked a 46.05 at last year's Long Beach Grand Prix. It also moved him into the top five all time.

Matt Grevers, who has enjoyed an impressive meet thus far, grabbed second with a time of 46.33. Phelps' time pushed Grevers back in the all-time race as his top time is a 45.80 from the 2007 SCY National Championships.

Davis Tarwater, sporting a mustache in honor of Mark Spitz – like many of the other Club Wolverine men, took third in 47.71.

Women's 1650 free
Carly Piper, now swimming for Mecklenburg, picked up the distance free title in 16:19.53. Meanwhile, Lyndsay De Paul clocked a solid second-place effort of 16:23.59. Erin McCleave completed the top three in 16:26.05.

Women's 100 back
Mary DeScenza whacked a second off her personal best with a winning effort of 52.40 as she touched out Margaret Hoelzer (52.74) for the title. DeScenza's old best readout had been a 53.41 set at the 2007 SCY National Championships.

Hoelzer settled for second a bit slower than her top time of 52.30 also set at the 2007 SCY National Championships that also put her among the top five all time.

Kaitlin Sandeno, who already owns three titles so far, wound up third in 53.57, while 15-year-old Cindy Tran, a National Club Swimming Association All-American, grabbed fourth with a 55.09.

Men's 100 back
Michael Phelps completed a strong double with another lifetime best, this time with a 45.50 as he overtook Peter Marshall (45.65) for the win. Phelps' readout cut his best time down from a 45.90 also set last year in Long Beach and moved him just behind Indiana University's Ben Hesen (45.45) on the all time list.

Marshall went out with an incredibly fast pace as he clocked a 22.25 going out, but could not hold the pace and wound up taking second behind Phelps, who went out in 22.45.

Matt Grevers, usually a backstroke specialist but is now focusing on freestyle in hopes of making an Olympic relay, settled for third in 46.19.

Men's 1650 free
Oh so close! Erik Vendt nearly grabbed his second distance freestyle American record of the meet with an amazing swim of 14:26.97.

1 Vendt, Erik K 27 CW-MI 14:34.85 14:26.97
23.89 50.07 (26.18)
1:16.53 (26.46) 1:43.02 (26.49)
2:09.49 (26.47) 2:35.90 (26.41)
3:02.42 (26.52) 3:28.90 (26.48)
3:55.36 (26.46) 4:21.60 (26.24)
4:47.89 (26.29) 5:14.08 (26.19)
5:40.10 (26.02) 6:06.15 (26.05)
6:32.28 (26.13) 6:58.53 (26.25)
7:24.69 (26.16) 7:50.97 (26.28)
8:17.23 (26.26) 8:43.62 (26.39)
9:10.15 (26.53) 9:36.79 (26.64)
10:03.37 (26.58) 10:30.10 (26.73)
10:56.66 (26.56) 11:23.09 (26.43)
11:49.56 (26.47) 12:16.03 (26.47)
12:42.52 (26.49) 13:08.70 (26.18)
13:35.13 (26.43) 14:01.56 (26.43) 14:26.97 (25.41)

Unfortunately for Vendt, he came up just short of Chris Thompson's national standard of 14:26.62 set at the 2001 NCAA Championships. Vendt did, however, leapfrog Sebastien Rouault into third all time in the event. Larsen Jensen owns the second spot with a 14:26.70, while Rouault clocked a 14:29.43.

Jon Daniec, 15, finished well behind Vendt for second with a time of 15:30.15, while Zane Grothe, 15, took third in 15:34.58.

Women's 100 breast
American record holder Tara Kirk posted the lone sub-1:00 with a winning readout of 59.11. The performance was a strong in-season time, albeit well short of her national standard of 57.77.

Jessica Hardy snared the second spot with a time of 1:00.68, while Keri Hehn knocked off Amanda Beard, 1:00.92 to 1:01.38, for third place.

Men's 100 breast
Michael Phelps nearly pulled off another amazing feat with a triple in one night, but fell short of Mark Gangloff in the 100 breast. Gangloff ripped off a winning time of 53.09, just half-a-second off his best effort of 52.53 set at the 2007 American Short Course Championships.

Phelps, on the other hand, blasted more than a second from his lifetime best with a second-place recording of 53.41. His old top time, which had him ranked around the 150s all time, used to be a 54.67 from last year's Long Beach Grand Prix. His new best now has him among the top 40 all time. Talk about a monster jump, especially for someone usually gunning for best times ever.

Matt Smith rounded out the top three with a 54.92, while Cheyne Bloch finished fourth in 55.13.

Women's 200 IM
Kaitlin Sandeno earned her fourth title of the meet with a lifetime-best effort of 1:56.90. Her previous best clocking had been a 1:57.53 set at the 2004 Pac 10 Championships.

Kim Vandenberg wound up taking second place with a 1:57.59, while Caitlin Leverenz, 16, snagged third in 2:00.11.

Men's 200 IM
Matt Grevers won another title in 1:43.56, while Tamas Kerekjarto (placed second in 1:45.26. Meanwhile, Adam Ritter completed the top three in 1:46.15.

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