Kopas Makes Successful Senior Nationals Debut, Alexandrov Breaks American Record

Kopas Makes Successful Seniors Debut, Alexandrov Breaks American Record


December 3, 2010

Emily Kopas got her first taste of senior nationals.

The South Florida Aquatic Club swimmer competed in the first of two individual events in the three-day  AT&T Short Course National Championships Friday in Columbus, Ohio.

Kopas finished 39th among a field of 75 in the women’s 100-yard breaststroke morning prelims in 1:03.64. Her splits were 30.20 and 33.44.

“I am happy with her swim,” said SOFLO coach Michael Lohberg. “At her first nationals right at her best time is good for a rookie.”

Kopas was also a member of SOFLO’s 4×50-yard medley relay that finished 23rd in

1:46.91. She was joined by Julie Stupp, 24, Jessie Alcaide, 25, and Arlene Semeco, 26.

SOFLO two-time Olympian Vlad Polyakov, 27, of Kazakhstan was fifth in the men’s 100-yard breaststroke in 52.25. Polyakov was seeded tenth after morning prelims in 53.98, just off his 53.95 seed time. The meet is serving as a tuneup for Polyakov for the short course world championships in two weeks in Dubai.

On Saturday, Kopas and Polyakov will compete in the 200-yard breaststroke while SOFLO teammates Arlene Semeco and Jessie Alcaide compete in the 100-yard freestyle.

One American record and four other meet records in individual events were broken Friday night.

U.S. National team member Michael Alexandrov, 25, of Tucson Ford broke his own American record in the 100-yard breaststroke in 51.35. His previous record was 51.56 set in 2007.

“I was aiming for a best time and for me that would mean an American record,” Alexandrov said. “I’m just really excited. It’s an honor to have an American record. This was a dress rehearsal for me.”

Alexandrov will represent the U.S. at the Dec. 15-19 FINA World Short Course Championships in Dubai.

Hungarian Katinka Hosszu, 21, of the University of Southern California broke her second meet record in the 400-yard individual medley in 4:00.03. The old record was 4:00.62 set by Dagny Knutson in 2008. She also led off USC’s winning 4×200-yard freestyle relay that won in 7:07.11.

Jessica Hardy, 23, of Trojan Swim Club, broke the meet record in the 100-yard breaststroke in 58.14. The previous record was 58.62 set in 2009 by Rebecca Soni.

Matt Grevers, 25, of Tucson Ford broke two meet records in the 100-yard butterfly and 100-yard backstroke. He broke the meet record in the 100-yard backstroke in 44.82. The previous record was 45.09. He broke the butterfly record in 45.07.

SwimMAC’s men’s 4×50-yard medley relay of Nicholas Thomas, Nelson Westby, Davis Tarwater and Josh Schneider broke the meet record in  1:25.12 and University of California broke the women’s relay mark in 1:36.79.

She didn’t break a meet record but 15-year-old Missy Franklin of the Colorado Stars topped an impressive women’s field to win the 200-yard freestyle in 1:44.23.

Olympian Ryan Lochte, unshaved and untapered, was fourth in the 200-yard freestyle in 1:35.42 and seventh in the 100-yard backstroke in 46.93.

Florida Gold Coast swimmer (Lake Lytal Lightning) Brendon Andrews, 20, of the University of Louisville won the bonus final of the 200-yard freestyle in 1:36.61. He also led off his fourth-place 4×200-yard freestyle relay team (6:31.82) and eighth-place relay 4×50-yard medley relay team (1:28.88). Older sister Sarah, 21, anchored Louisville’s seventh place 4×200-yard freestyle relay that finished in 7:20.50.

Other Friday night winners:

Robert Margalis, 28, FAST Swim Team, 400-yard individual medley, 3:40.37.

Lyndsay DePaul, 22, University of Southern California, 100-yard butterfly, 51.46.

Rexford Tullius, 23, Unattached Gainesville Swim Club, 200-yard freestyle, 1:35.03.

Presley Bard, 22, University of Southern California, women’s 100-yard backstroke, 51.82.

University of Southern California, women’s 4×200-yard freestyle relay, 7:07.11.

University of Southern California, men’s 4×200-yard freestyle relay, 6:22.61.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.