YMCA National Long Course Championships: Middle Tyger Extends Lead; Records Continue to Fall

ATLANTA, Georgia, July 25. THREE more YMCA national records fell as Middle Tyger extended its lead in the team race during the third day of racing at the Georgia Tech Aquatic Center in Atlanta.

Orlando's Kendall Dawson earned her first victory of the meet in the women's 800m free, cutting three seconds off her entry time to win in 8:56.18. Remedy Rule of Waynesboro also broke the 8-minute mark with a second place effort of 8:58.25. Wilton's Verity Abel, the winner of the 1500m free two nights ago, came in third in 9:01.30.

Greater Flint's Courtney Weaver followed suit with her first win of the meet, capturing the women's 100m fly in a new national record of 1:00.22. That lowered Leah Gingrich's 1:00.49 from 2008. Middle Tyger's Haley Lips took second in 1:00.58, while Elise Lankiewicz of Brandywine finished on the podium as well in 1:02.21. Triangle Area's Joe Bonk is now two-for-two in his individual events after winning the men's 50m free and now the 100m fly in 55.62. Greater Flint's Andrew Yunker emerged from a tightly packed heat to place second in 56.28, just .01 ahead of Wyckoff's Leo Lim (56.29).

Greenwich's Katie Evans had the fastest last leg of any swimmer in the entire field en route to winning the women's 200m breast in 2:36.41. Evans was third at the final turn before surging ahead and touching out Middle Tyger's Sava Faulconer, who touched in 2:36.92. Olivia Ontjes of Triangle Area came in third in 2:37.45. Door County's Conner McHugh, who has already won the 50m breast at the meet, added the 200m breast to his collection with a 2:21.97. Jonathan Rutter of Powel Crosley came in second at 2:22.87, with New Canaan's John Santoro rounding out the podium in 2:23.22.

Middle Tyger's Haley Lips earned her third win of the meet in convincing fashion, topping the 200m free field by two second in 2:02.51. Madeline Smart of Wilton swam a 2:04.51 to take second while Greater Flint's Anna Wujciak was third (2:05.28). Upper Main Line posted a 1-2 finish in the men's race behind strong performances from Vlad Komarov (1:52.76) and Nic Graesser (1:54.44). Nik Bondarenko of West Cook rounded out the top three in 1:54.60.

In relay action, Middle Tyger's quartet of Katrina Konopka, Haley Lips, Ali Snover and Ali Galyer shaved three seconds off the national record in the 400m free relay with a 3:51.98. They broke their own record of 3:54.85 from last summer. Wilton also swam under the previous time with a 3:52.81. Another national record fell in the men's relay, as Triangle Area's Alex Mathews, Colin Ellington, Macon Crowder and Joe Bonk swam a 3:29.36 to take down Upper Main Line's 3:31.18 from 2009.

At the conclusion of day three, Middle Tyger has extended their lead over Wilton to 162.5 points, as they have 636 total points. Triangle Area is third with 430.