Olympic Trials Day 6 & 7: Phoebe Bacon is an Olympian!

By Reach for the Wall Staff

Ok, so we’re a bit late in providing recaps from Friday & Saturday because we were busy during the day attending opening weekend of the Summer League season and at night screaming at our TV’s for our local swimmers!! What a compelling two nights of swimming we witnessed. Friday night led off with the Women’s 200 Breaststroke and at the finish, (between wiping tears away) we couldn’t be more psyched for Annie Lazor and her comeback from 2016 to earn her spot on the team. Next we saw Cal teammates Ryan Murphy & Bryce Mefford take the top 2 spots in the Men’s 200 Backstroke in a commanding fashion. (We’ll skip over the semifinals for now & get to those in the Saturday recap.) The Men’s 200 IM Final was a thrilling race for a couple of reasons. For one we were eager to see if Michael Andrew could set a new World Record, secondly, would Ryan Lochte have one more big swim in him to qualify for the team? and Third, Andrew Seliskar had an equal chance to make the team in this event. As the race unfolded, #1 was in doubt until a bout the last 25 meters of the race when it was clear Michael Andrew gave everything he had but didn’t have ‘the next gear’ in his freestyle to break the record. He won the event in 1:55.44, 1.45 seconds shy of Ryan Lochte’s record from 2011. Speaking of Ryan Lochte, he too gave it his all, but was unable to get past 6th position in the race & finished 7th overall in 1:59.67. Andrew Seliskar was swimming out of lane 1 and after butterfly turned in 3rd place. The field was very tight at the wall in backstroke, but after breaststroke, Andrew held 6th position, where he finished the race in 1:58.35. Moving on to Saturday’s events, where swimmers from PVS competed in the Women’s 50 Freestyle, Women’s 200 Backstroke and Women’s 800 Freestyle.
The race of the night (at least in our opinion) was the Women’s 200 Backstroke between current World Record holder Regan Smith, Phoebe Bacon (Wisconsin/NCAP), Isabelle Stadden (Cal) and Rhyan White (Alabama), who already made the team in the 100 Backstroke. Regan, Isabelle and Phoebe all took it out fast, hitting the 100 turn, all under 1:02 (In the prelims and semis races, no swimmer dipped under 1:02 for the 1st 100). On the 3rd 50, Rhyan White made her move, splitting 32.15 to Phoebe’s 32.53, Regan’s 32.55, and Isabelle’s 32.86. The final turn was made with Rhyan and Phoebe speeding it up and swimming clear of Regan an d Isabelle. Rhyan’s last 50 was swum in 31.96 and she touched first overall in 2:05.73, Phoebe split 32.67 to touch second in 2:06.46 and Regan split 33.23 to finish 3rd in 2:06.79. Phoebe made the team! Phoebe made the team!!!

In the Women’s 50 Freestyle prelims, Torri Huske continued her stellar meet by qualifying 3rd overall in 24.61. Teenager phenom Camille Spink, who had a great swim in the 100 earlier, also made it to the semifinal round, qualifying 16th overall in 25.45, faster than what she went in Wave I! In the semifinal heat, Camille was up against Simone Manuel and Erika Brown (2nd place finisher in the Women’s 100 Freestyle). Camille was right on her time & finished in 16th with a 25.49. Way to go Camille!!

In the 2nd heat, Torri was in Lane 5, next to Abby Weitzel (winner of the Women’s 100 Freestyle). Torri blazed to a 24.45, almost 2 tenths better than her prelim swim & the 2nd fastest time going into tonight’s final!

There was no surprise that Katie Ledecke won the 800 Freestyle, going 8:14.62, 5.74 seconds ahead of the 2nd place finisher Katie Grimes. The race for 2nd wasn’t as predictable, as Katie Grimes (15 years old), was in 5th most of the race, behind Olympic team qualifiers Hayley Anderson and Erica Sullivan. It came down to the last 100 between Hayley and Katie, where Katie Grimes closed in 1:01.46 to Hayley’s 1:01.83 and Katie snatching the 2nd place and Olympic team berth! Many parallels have been drawn between Ledecky and Grimes as it was Ledecky qualifying for her first Olympic team in this event at 15 yrs old.

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