Olympic Trials: Day 3

By Reach for the Wall Staff

Tuesday night’s session started with the Women’s 200 Freestyle semifinal where the local hopeful Erin Gemmell (NCAP) was pitted against Katie Ledecky (Stanford/NCAP), (her club teammate, high school alumnus, and for many years, coached by her father). In the intro to the event, NBC did a split screen showing Katie & Erin side by side readying themselves for the race.

Katie and Paige Madden (UVA) pushed each other through the first 150. Off the last turn, Katie took command and finished 1st in 1:55.83. Erin swam her way to 4th in the heat, touching in a personal best time of 1:58.67, which placed her 9th overall.
In the second heat, Torri Huske continued her quest to qualify for multiple events for Tokyo. She was the 6th seed in the heat with her prelim time of 1:59.48 (her best time 1:58.09 was swum in April). Torri battled throughout and touched the wall 6th in her heat and 11th overall in 1:59.27. We’ll hold out hope that there’s a late scratch and Erin gets another shot at the 200, if not, Congratulations on this great swim!!!

In the Men’s 200 Freestyle final, Andrew Seliskar entered the race as the 6th seed with his semifinal time of 1:46.95 (his best time 1:45.70 was accomplished in 2018). In the first 100, Seliskar hung back in 6th and 5th place at each successive turn, then made his move…at the 150 he turned in 3rd place, out-splitting the field and the only swimmer under 27. The last 50 was a scramble with just 6 tenths separating 2nd and 4th at the finish. He got his hand on the wall in the 4th position with a time of 1:46.34 & earning a spot on the Olympic team!!!

We saw on our Twitter feed that Andrew’s NVSL summer league team was cheering him on:

The Women’s 100 Backstroke was the next final on the schedule and Phoebe Bacon (Wisconsin/NCAP) occupied the 6th seed with her semifinal time of 59.62 (her best time is 58.63, swum in 2019). Phoebe hit the wall at the 50 in 7th position, only .58 out of 2nd place, however couldn’t close the gap and finished in 6th with a time of 59.58- Great job Phoebe!

The next event of the night featuring a former PVS swimmer was the Men’s 200 Butterfly, with Jack Conger (Virginia Tech/NCAP/RMSC). Jack swam in the 2nd heat out of lane 8, hoping for some outside smoke. Trenton Julian gave the crowd a htrill by taking the race out fast, building a lead of over a second by the 100 turn. Michael Phelps was providing commentary for the event & remarked that his 2nd 50 split may haunt him at the end of the race. The heat winner Zach Harting did track him down and out touch him 1:55.21 to 1:55.35. Jack finished strong, but touched 7th in his heat and 11th overall, not qualifying for the Final race tonight. Congratulations Jack!!

The last event was the Women’s 200 IM, where Torri Huske competed in the 1st heat of the semifinal. Her prelim swim of 2:12.51 qualified her 8th overall. Predictably, she was first at the wall after the butterfly leg and despite issues with the lane rope, held the top spot heading into breaststroke. At the 150 mark, it was a 4 woman race between Torri, Madisyn Cox, Beata Nelson, and Meghan Small. The last 50 was a sprint home, Torri split a 31.2, but couldn’t catch Madisyn or Meghan, finishing the heat in 3rd place, in 2:11.42, good enough to qualify her 8th overall for the final tonight!!

PVS Swimmers that competed Tuesday:
Men’s 200 Butterfly:
Landon Gentry (NCAP) 26th: 1:59.85
Alexander Colson (Arizona State/RMSC) 31st: 2:00.30
Women’s 200 IM:
Sophie Duncan (NCAP) 30th: 2:17.49
Women’s 1500 Freestyle:
Madelyn Donohoe (FISH) 17th:16:43.72
Paige McKenna (NCAP) 18th: 16:43.85
Chase Travis (Virginia Tech/NCAP) 20th:16:45.20
*Katie Ledecky qualified 1st in 15:43.10 and will compete tonight, we’ll provide a recap on that race in our next post

Today’s Events:

Wednesday, June 16Wednesday, June 16
Men’s 100 FreestyleMen’s 100 Freestyle – Semifinal
Women’s 200 ButterflyWomen’s 200 Freestyle – FINAL
Men’s 200 BreaststrokeMen’s 200 Butterfly – FINAL
Men’s 800 FreestyleWomen’s 200 Butterfly – Semifinal
Men’s 200 Breaststroke – Semifinal
Women’s 200 Individual Medley – FINAL
Women’s 1500 Freestyle – FINAL