Dahlia, Weyant, Finke, Rooney Come Up Big On Day Three Of Phillips 66 U.S. National Championships

By Sharon Robb

PALO ALTO, Calif., August 3, 2019–It was a short but exciting night of racing on Day Three of the Phillips 66 U.S. National Championships Friday at Stanford University’s Avery Aquatics Center.

Emma Weyant came from behind midway through the race and held on to win the 400-meter individual medley in 4:35.47, best time in the U.S. this year. Weyant put in a final surge in the last 50 meters to edge Brooke Ford, second in 4:36.06.

Bobby Finke of St. Petersburg Aquatics won the 400-meter individual medley in 4:13.15, just edging out Carson Foster in 4:13.39, a world junior record. Finke reeled in Foster in the final 50.

Kelsi Worrell Dahlia, in sixth place at the 50-meter mark, won the 100-meter butterfly in 57.35 ahead of Amanda Kendall in 57.51.

Maxime Rooney went out fast and held on to win the 100-meter butterfly in 51.09. Jack Conger was second in 51.70.

Sixteen-year-old Torri Huske broke one of the oldest national age group records in the books. Huske finished just off the podium in 57.80, splitting 26.80/31.00, and breaking Mary Meagher‘s record of 57.93 from 1981.

Dana Vollmer, a seven-time Olympic medalist, swam the final race of her career Friday. She finished 32nd overall in the 100-meter butterfly preliminaries, clocking a time of 59.94 and failing to advance to the final.

The 31-year-old mother of two had announced that the race would be her last. She remains the American record holder in her signature event. Vollmer will retire with 10 long-course and six short-course World Championships medals in addition to her seven Olympic medals.

On an unusual day for South Florida Aquatic Club swimmers, both Kathleen Golding, 18, and Mary Smutny, 18, were disqualified in their events during morning prelims.

Golding was disqualified in the 400-meter individual medley for two butterfly kicks on her breaststroke pullout and Smutny was disqualified in the 100-meter butterfly. Both will swim the 400-meter freestyle on Saturday.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

Olympian Allison Schmitt Returns In Winning Form; SOFLO’s Smutny Races Second Event

By Sharon Robb

PALO ALTO, Calif.—After nearly a two-year hiatus, three-time Olympian Allison Schmitt is back in the water and looking good.

The eight-time Olympic medalist won the 200-meter freestyle in 1:56.97 at the Phillips 66 National Championships Thursday at Stanford University’s Avery Aquatic Center.

It was 1.3 seconds faster than she swam at world championships where she placed a disappointing 14th. Thursday’s swim was her fastest since August 2018.

Ever since I decided I was going to get back into the pool, eyes were set on 2020,” said Schmitt. “It’s definitely still a day-by-day process, has its ups and downs. But, as a whole, it’s been a good journey, and like I said, I’m really looking forward to this upcoming year.”

Schmitt, at 29, is the only woman left from the 2008 U.S. Olympic swim team who is going for the 2020 Tokyo Games. Her American record from winning the 200-meter freestyle at the 2012 London Games remains one of the few marks that Katie Ledecky hasn’t crushed.

Also in the women’s 200-meter freestyle, South Florida Aquatic Club’s Mary Smutny, 18, went 2:03.92.

In other Thursday events:

Madisyn Cox won the women’s 200-meter breaststroke in 2:23.84, a personal best by 1.78 seconds.

Cal sophomore Reece Whitley, at 6-foot-9 one of the sport’s tallest swimmers, won his first national 200-meter breaststroke title in a personal-best 2:09.69.

Texas junior Austin Katz won the 200-meter backstroke in 1:55.72, which would have earned a bronze medal at worlds.

Asia Seidt won the women’s 200-meter backstroke in 2:08.90. Regan Smith, the 17-year-old who broke the world record at worlds, did not to race this event at nationals.

Aussie teenager Elijah Winnington won the 200-meter freestyle in 1:46.19.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

Ryan Lochte Returns To Swimming At Phillips 66 National Championships; SOFLO’s Golding, Smutny Swim First Races

By Sharon Robb

STANFORD, Calif., August 2, 2019—Olympic champion Ryan Lochte returned to the competitive spotlight Wednesday at the Phillips 66 National Championships at Stanford University’s Avery Aquatic Center.

On opening day, Lochte swam the fourth-fastest time by an American in the 200-meter individual medley during a time trial and qualified for the U.S. Olympic Trials in 1:57.88. The time is only 3.88 seconds off his world record time.

“I’m back, woo,” Lochte told reporters after his race. “It’s been a long three years but it’s good to be back, get on those blocks and race again.”

Lochte, 35, a father of two, is coming off a 14-month suspension for receiving an infusion of vitamin B-12 above the allowed limit. During his suspension, he checked himself into a rehab center in Florida for six weeks to fight alcohol abuse.

“I don’t do that much anymore,” Lochte said. “I’ve been splotchy with my swimming. Family trumps everything. Swimming has been my second priority. Nationals, for me, is a stepping stone to see where I’m at in the swimming world. It’s a long journey to next year to see what I can do.”

South Florida Aquatic Club’s Mary Smutny and Kathleen Golding got in their first swims on Wednesday.

Smutny, 18, was 49th in the 200-meter butterfly in 2:15.74. Golding, 18, was 97th in the 100-meter freestyle in 57.56.

Wednesday night opening winners were:

Women’s 800-meter freestyle, Ally McHugh, 22, WA 8:26.04.

Men’s 1500-meter freestyle, Bobby Finke, 19, St. Petersburg Aquatics 14:51.15.

Women’s and men’s 200-meter butterfly, Regan Smith, RIPT 2:07.26; Luca Urlando, 17, DART 1:54.92.

Women’s and men’s 100-meter freestyle, Abbey Weitzell, CAL 43.18; Ryan Held, NYAC 47.39, third fastest time this year.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

Florida Gold Coast All-Star Hudson Bishop Wins On Day Four Of Southern Zone Age Group Championships


CARY, N.C., August 2, 2019—Maddie Smutny of South Florida Aquatic Club turned in another Top 15 finish on Day Four of the Southern Zone Age Group Championships Friday at Triangle Aquatic Center.

Smutny, 14, was eleventh in the 400-meter freestyle in 4:39.90. She was also a member of FGC’s tenth place 13-14 200-meter medley relay team in 2:07.03 with teammates Meghan Perez, Michelle Fernandez and Logan Zielinski.

SOFLO teammate Alejandro Mateus, 14, was 18th in the 100-meter backstroke in 1:05.86.

Florida Gold Coast had its first individual winner. Hudson Bishop, 14, of East Coast Aquatic Club won the 13-14 100-meter backstroke in 1:00.38, a best time with a 0.75 time drop.

FGC teammate Dylan Smiley of Miami Country Day Aquatics was second in the 100-meter breaststroke in 1:10.16.

Bishop, Smiley, Agustin Rodriguez and Daniel Givskov were members of the fourth place 200-meter medley relay that finished fourth in 1:53.80.

: 1. North Carolina 701.5, 2. Florida Swimming 593, 3. Team Georgia 549, 4. South Carolina 332.5, 5. North Texas Zone 308, 8. Florida Gold Coast 168.

MEN TEAM TOTALS: 1. North Carolina 316.5, 2. Florida Swimming 273.5, 3. Team Georgia 261, 4. South Texas 141.5, 5. North Texas Zone 136, 9. Florida Gold Coast 84.5.

WOMEN TEAM TOTALS: 1. North Carolina 345, 2. Florida Swimming 269.5, 3. Team Georgia 264, 4. South Carolina 203, 5. North Texas Zone 162, 8. Florida Gold Coast 71.5.


100-meter backstroke:
11-12, 1. Nicole Zettel, NCS 1:07.34; FGC: 7. Carolyn Powell 1:11.70; 13-14, 1. Kat Woodall, KY 1:05.18; 15-18, 1. Susan Mumford, NCS 1:05.78.

100-meter breaststroke:
11-12, 1. Seanna Muhitch, NTX 1:15.84; FGC: 5. Bianca Nieto 1:19.57, time drop 1.35, 7. Abbie Sargent 1:20.24, time drop 1.70; 13-14, 1. Delaney Franklin, SC 1:15.11; FGC: 5. Michelle Fernandez 1:16.64; 15-18, 1. Isabella Gaskey, NCS 1:15.79.

400-meter freestyle:
13-14, 1. Cadence Fort, FL 4:25.53; FGC: 4. Mariana Cote 4:32.79; 15-18, 1. MaKayla Ciancanelli, NCS 4:31.10.

200-meter medley relay:
11-12, 1. North Texas Zone 2:05.91, Florida Gold Coast, DQ; 13-14, 1. Florida Swimming 2:02.17, 10. Florida Gold Coast 2:07.03 (Meghan Perez, Michelle Fernandez, Maddie Smutny, Logan Zielinski); 15-18, 1. North Carolina 2:02.47.


100-meter backstroke:
11-12, 1. Maximus Williamson, NTX 1:04.41; 13-14, 1. Hudson Bishop, FGC 1:00.38; 15-18, 1. Nicholas Eunice, FL 58.67.

100-meter breaststroke:
11-12, 1. John McNamara, FL 1:13.59; FGC: 5. Giulian Martin 1:14.99; 13-14, 1. Will Heck, FL 1:07.76; FGC: 2. Dylan Smiley 1:10.16, 7. Chase Foulds 1:11.06, time drop 2.14; 15-18, 1. Jackson Bates, GA 1:07.30.

400-meter freestyle:
13-14, 1. Luis Junqueira, FL 4:12.58; FGC: 3. Agustin Rodriguez 4:13.48, time drop 0.51; 15-18, 1. Nicholas Caruso, FL 4:11.92.

200-meter medley relay:
11-12, 1. North Carolina 2:00.13, 6. Florida Gold Coast 2:07.16 (Riley Brisco, Giulian Martin, Lucas Bailey, Julian Lezcano); 13-14, 1. South Texas 1:52.93, 4. Florida Gold Coast 1:53.80 (Hudson Bishop, Dylan Smiley, Agustin Rodriguez, Daniel Givskov); 15-18, 1. Florida Swimming 1:50.85.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com