Morning Splash: Last Chance for Jack Conger Plus Mile Mayhem

Jack Conger. Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

By David Rieder.

Jack Conger had just swum the best race of his career. He destroyed his American record in the 200 fly by more than a second, finishing in 1:38.06. He was dominant for most of the race, leading by six tenths with 50 yards to go.

But somehow, Joseph Schooling tracked him down and touched in 1:37.97, good for the new NCAA and U.S. Open record. Even his big best time and the Longhorns finishing 1-2, Conger could not hide his disappointment.

2016.03.26 NCAA Mens Swimming Championships_Reagan_Texas Jack Conger

Photo Courtesy: Reagan Lunn/Georgia Tech Athletics

In his individual events, Conger has finished second at the NCAA championships three times—in the 100 fly in 2015 and the 200 fly each of the last two years. Schooling won each of those races, and the margins he lost by were 0.04, 0.12 and 0.09, respectively.

In those two seasons, Conger has been one of the most valuable pieces of Texas’ national championship runs, particularly as a versatile contributor on relays. With Schooling typically handling the fly legs, Conger has filled the anchor role on medley relays, and Longhorns head coach Eddie Reese has led him off on the 800 free relay each of the past two seasons.

In total, Conger has been a part of seven NCAA championship relays for the Longhorns, but he’s never won an individual NCAA title.

In his final day as a collegiate swimmer, he has one last chance—and arguably, his best one.

Conger is seeded more than one second ahead of the field in the 200 fly after winning the Big 12 title in the event in 1:39.17. That race was swum without his teammate and rival Schooling, who pulled out of the final after securing his spot in the NCAA meet.

So far in Indianapolis, Conger has finished third in the 100 fly in 44.35, taken 10th in the 50 free and swum on two national championship relays for the Longhorns. Now, he goes in his best event.

Conger and Schooling profess to be good friends, but in the pool, their rivalry is intense. In fact, when Schooling won his first World Championships medal in the 100 fly in 2015, Conger said he was happy for his teammate but frustrated that he had not surpassed Schooling’s time when he swam the race at U.S. Nationals.

Schooling is well down on the psych sheet this year and has admitted that he took it easy in training for several months before mid-December, which could potentially hamper his fitness for the back half of a 200.

That said, Schooling pulled out some impressive splits to squeeze out unlikely victories—like his 25.43 closing split from the NCAA final last year—and he will surely be motivated to win one after a stunning runner-up finish in the 100 fly to Caeleb Dressel.

But Schooling has his individual NCAA championships, five of them now. For Conger, it’s now or never.

Can the Mile Top Last Year?

Short answer: probably not. In one of the wildest strategic races imaginable, three different men had substantial leads in the fast heat of the 1650, and none of them won, thanks to a 24.38 final 50 split from Penn’s Chris Swanson.

Swanson has graduated and moved on, but all three men who had those big leads—Texas’ Clark Smith, Michigan’s PJ Ransford and South Carolina’s Akaram Mahmoud—are back. Mahmoud, especially, will be looking for some vindication after losing a lead of more than 2.5 seconds on the last 50.

Eight men have swum under 14:40 this season, and assuming no one scratches, that will be the field in swimming in the top heat at night. Felix Auboeck enters seeded first at 14:29.25, and he already showed some mettle at the NCAA meet with an impressive third-place finish in the 500 free, with his time of 4:08.95 moving to sixth all-time.

Smith will go for his second win of the meet after already capturing the 500, and a few lanes over will be Stanford freshman True Sweetser, who pushed Smith in a head-to-head duel in December at the Texas Invite. Louisville’s Marcelo Acosta vs. NC State’s Anton Ipsen will be another head-to-head rematch after their ACC championships showdown.

Ransford and Mahmoud will swim in the outside lanes, and then there’s Jordan Wilimovsky, the redshirt senior at Northwestern coming off a fourth place finish in the 1500 free at the Olympic Games.

Who said the mile is boring?

All commentaries are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Swimming World Magazine nor its staff.

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Mark Cavendish to miss Ghent-Wevelgem: ‘the classics don’t make you faster’

British sprint star Mark Cavendish will miss Ghent-Wevelgem in Belgium on Sunday in order to stay fresh for his main season goals, including the Tour de France

Mark Cavendish‘s Dimension Data team say that he could pay the price as a top sprinter if he pushes himself through classics like Ghent-Wevelgem. He will not race the Belgian classic on Sunday for the second consecutive year.

Scott Thwaites, Edvald Boasson Hagen and Tyler Farrar led the race in the E3 Harelbeke on Friday, and on the nearby roads to Wevelgem on Sunday. They stepped off the team’s temporary grey caravan this morning while Rolf Aldag, the team’s performance manager, went over last-minute details with a helper.

“You have to think about his needs to be the fastest man on the planet, which he wants to be and needs to be,” Aldag said after looking over some papers in the team car.

“The classics don’t make you faster. You’ve seen André Greipel doing them, he’s good at them, but you pay the price. It takes a lot of energy out of your body.”

>>> Watch: Cavendish and Ewan in final rain-lashed sprint battle at the Abu Dhabi Tour (video)

Cavendish raced Ghent-Wevelgem six times over the years with teams HTC, Sky and Quick Step. He remains one of cycling’s top sprinters, but Ghent-Wevelgem changes.

Mark Cavendish wins stage one of the 2017 Abu Dhabi Tour. Photo: ANSA/Matteo Bazzi

This year, the race includes gravel dirt sectors, or Plugstreets around the Ploegsteert Memorial. It follows several years of changes that renders the race less sprinter friendly compared to the days when Mario Cipollini won.

World champion Peter Sagan won in 2016.

“Race organisers should think about it. Maybe it’s a category in cycling that will die over time, those sprinters classics. Could you imagine Cipollini winning the edition they’ll have this year? No way,” Aldag added.

“You just have to realise it and decide. They changed the characteristics of the race, they keep on changing it, and now it’s a mix of Strade Bianche. You can’t just say, ‘Sprinters won in the past, so why not race?’ Ghent-Wevelgem is a different type of race now. It’s still fun, but it doesn’t make sense.”

Cavendish, who last raced Milan-San Remo on Saturday, should come back to race in the Scheldeprijs next Wednesday, April 6. The team is planning his schedule over the coming days.

The goal, said Aldag, is the Tour de France in July and being the “fastest man on the planet.” If Cavendish collects five more wins, he will surpass Eddy Merckx‘s 34 victories with the most stage wins in history.

>>> Cobbled Classics 2017: Latest news, reports and info

“We always have flexibility with Cav. His programme is never fixed over these years,” Aldag added.

“The thing you wouldn’t expect is that every time I call him up to ask him if he can fill in for someone, he always says yes. If I called him today, said that we needed him in Harelbeke, he’d jump in the car and be here.”

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‘We tried to support Sagan… but the team is not about one person’

Bora-Hansgrohe rider Lukas Pöstlberger became team leader in Friday’s E3 Harelbeke after Peter Sagan suffered a badly-timed crash and missed the lead group

Peter Sagan‘s Bora-Hansgrohe team hopes to play different cards in the classics, saying that it’s not just about the world champion. The team tried in Friday’s E3 Harelbeke with Lukas Pöstlberger as Sagan was ruled out by an untimely crash.

The German WorldTour team scrambled when its Slovakian star missed the winning move with Greg Van Avermaet (BMC Racing) and fell in a crash with 43 kilometres to race. He was unable to ride his bike immediately after the incident and failed to re-join the pack, which climbed the Paterberg and raced away.

Bora’s black team cars arrived to the bus before Sagan, who cut through the crowds of Belgians in his rainbow jersey 10 minutes later. He would not talk.

>>> Greg Van Avermaet battles with Philippe Gilbert and Oliver Naesen to win E3 Harelbeke

“With Lukas Pöstlberger, which no one knows, placing fifth, that’s a big exclamation mark for us,” Bora-Hansgrohe sports director Jens Zemke said.

“The team is not only about one person, also someone else can jump in. Marcus Burghardt was riding strongly, the whole team.

“We tried to support Peter, but if he had a crash in a very bad moment with no team car behind, then yeah, it’s over for him.”

Lukas Postlberger has been riding strongly in the classics so far. Photo: Yuzuru Sunada

Tall Belgian Stijn Vandenbergh (Ag2r La Mondiale) fell fast and hard on the cement roads nearing the Paterberg climb. Sagan, unable to avoid him, crashed in his wake.

The television cameras switched back to the leaders immediately. Belgian champion Philippe Gilbert (Quick-Step Floors) led Van Avermaet, the eventual winner, up the cobbled and steep Paterberg climb.

Sky’s Luke Rowe still tried to fight for his position marked by Matteo Trentin for Quick-Step team-mate Gilbert. Viewers assumed the world champion had returned to the group, but his bike suffered more in the crash than he had.

>>> Seven things to look out for at E3 Harelbeke and Ghent-Wevelgem

“Peter’s OK. It was a bit of bad luck for him, he crashed, he had a problem with his bike, and then it was over. He was standing for three or four minutes where we had the deviation for the team cars, so at that point, it was over for him. We couldn’t do anything,” continued Zemke.

“He had to continue, but the gears weren’t working anymore after the crash, then the Paterberg starts. We were waiting on the downhill, gave him a new bike, or tried, but he said, ‘No, I’ll continue on this one.’ It was hopeless. It took too long.

“We were physically motivated and hot, but if someone crashes ahead of you then you have no chance.”

Bora-Hansgrohe’s 25-year-old Austrian Lukas Pöstlberger luckily made the early move. The attention turned to him when Sagan struggled due to the crash. However, he lacked the power to match stars like Olympic Champion Van Avermaet.

The crash and team tactics expose Bora’s problem: one star with few other options. Quick-Step, in case something went wrong with Gilbert, was able to rely Tom Boonen and Matteo Trentin behind. BMC Racing counted on Daniel Oss.

At the finish, Sagan refused to look to waiting journalists and climbed immediately on the bus. He only exited for the anti-doping control.

>>> Cobbled Classics 2017: Latest news, reports and info

The team will travel to their hotel, where focus will turn to Ghent-Wevelgem on Sunday and the other races ahead. The idea is that Sagan’s sheer power should prevail sooner or later.

“We are in the beginning of this campaign, we have Ghent-Wevelgem, we have the Tour of Flanders, we have Scheldeprijs… There is a lot of racing coming. Paris-Roubaix… So, I think that now we have the bad luck behind us and we can look forward,” added Zemke

“You bring it on the point!” he added when it was pointed out that Sagan took revenge in Ghent-Wevelgem last year after losing E3 Harelbeke to Sky’s Michal Kwiatkowski. “Revenge? Yes, of course.”

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Monica Wilson – Spine Corrector Workout (35 mins) – Level 2

What You’ll Need:

Spine Corrector, Hand Weights

Enjoy this beautiful day with a Spine Corrector workout with Monica Wilson. She chooses exercises that will open up the shoulders as well as strengthen the upper body. She also uses this piece of apparatus to help engage her powerhouse to control the sway in her back.

Mar 25, 2017

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Bray, Fonder Get Gators Back in the Mix on Night Four of ISCA Dolfin Jr. National Cup

Photo Courtesy: Diana Pimer

The 2017 ISCA Dolfin Jr. National Cup is off and running once again. The meet is being held in the Long Center Pool at the Doyle Aquatic Center in Clearwater, Florida. The meet will take place from March 21-March 25 and will be conducted in a 16 & Under/Open format. Full results are available on Meet Mobile: 2017 Dolfin ISCA Junior Championship Cup.

The Virginia Gator women have narrowed their point deficit from 36.5 points to 16.5 points with one day left of competition. The Gator men (377.5) have a dominant lead over Ohio State Swim Club (282). In the combined scores, the top three teams are: Virginia Gators (693), Mason Manta Rays (587) and Ohio State Swim Club (460).

Although it concluded the meet, the Gator team of Olivia Bray, Emma Muzzy, Whittney Hamilton and Caroline Kulp shattered the 15-16 400 Medley Relay National Age Group Record. Their time of 3:36.53 broke the previous mark set by SwimMAC in 2013. While this record went down, Beata Nelson‘s 100 fly NAG remains safe for a bit longer. In tonight’s 16 & Under 100 fly, Bray dominated the event entirely by racing to a 51.48, just .40 seconds off the NAG. But Bray is just 15 years old and has a full year to keep going after that record.

But Bray’s dominance did not stop there. Just a few heats later, Bray went on to win the 16 & Under 50 back in 24.22, and then took second in the 200 free with a lifetime best 1:46.37. The first two swims were both meet records, while she finished second only to NBAC star Easop Lee (1:45.70) in the 200. Kulp was third in 1:47.85. Bray capitalized on her underwaters in all three races and raced fearlessly, taking out the 200 in a lifetime best 50.40. It was clear tonight that Bray and the Gators were swimming with purpose.

Emma Muzzy won her fifth event of the meet by taking the 400 IM in 4:11.80. Just a bit off her best, the time was still good enough to clinch the meet record and victory in this event. Teammate Keith Myburg did similarly in the Open 400 IM, crushing the old meet record with a time of 3:45.85. Despite a tough battle with Ridgefield’s Kieran Smith (3:46.07) and being second at the 200 mark, Myburg battled back to take the win. Greg Reed, also of the Gators, took third in 3:55.12.

17-year-old Khalil Fonder then claimed his moment in the spotlight this week by winning two Open events in a row. He started off with the 100 fly in meet-record fashion with a 47.63. Teammate Angelo Russo was not far behind in 48.06. Quest’s Clark Beach was third in 48.16. Fonder took it out in a quick 22.15 and like Bray, utilized his underwater power off the last wall to secure the win. He used the same technique in the 50 back just minutes later, claiming a huge meet record of 22.16. The time broke the old record by over one and a half seconds and won the event by .33. Russo tied OSSC’s Benjamin Sugar in this race for second in 22.49 seconds.

Fonder, Myburgh and Russo then teamed up with 1,000-Champion Greg Reed to claim the 40 medley relay in 3:16.79. OSSC was second in 3:18.44 followed by the Manta Rays in 3:18.75. The Manta Ray women claimed second in the women’s event in 3:42.82 followed by Empire in 3:43.93.

While the Gators did have an impressive night, they certainly weren’t the only ones. NBAC’s Lauren Poole swam to a personal best in the 16 & Under 400 IM swimming a 4:15.00 for second place. Coast Guard Blue Dolphin’s Danika Katzer took third in 4:16.52. The Open event featured First Colony’s Danielle Hepler winning in 4:15.38 followed by the Rays’ Allison Bloebaum (4:21.16) and Gators’ Cabell Whitlow (4:21.34). The Foster brothers continued their dominance in the 16 & Under 400 IM claiming the top two spots in 3:46.62 and 3:49.72. Carson Foster took the win accompanied by his older brother Jacob Foster in second. Garrett Clason was third in 3:53.51 as all three men swam under the previous meet record.

Bray had some fast backup in the 100 fly in Enfinity’s Olivia Carter (52.85) and Makos’ Alexa Cuomo (53.10). Tide’s Callie Dickinson made a statement in the open event with a winning time of 54.14. Greenwood Swimming’s Kasja Dymek was not far behind in 54.39 followed closely by Ridgefield’s backstroke-Champion Marcella Maguire (54.49). She later claimed the sprint backstroke event in 25.21 setting the meet record. Enfinity’s Kathryn Morrison (25.76) took runner-up honors (25.76) and Clearwater’s Helena Heuberger (26.23) was third.

In the men’s 16 & Under 100 fly, Enfinity’s Maxwell Edwards broke Fonder’s meet record in 48.21. Cason Wilburn was second in 48.37 and Michael Petro took third in 48.49. In the 50 backstroke for this age category, Shane Blinkman continued his fast swimming with a tie of 22.89 with ODAC’s Caleb Mauldin. Enfinity’s Kyle Barone was third in 23.18.

The Open 200 freestyle highlighted three familiar names this week as Hepler picked up her second win of the night in 1:48.27. The Manta Ray duo of Hannah Foster and Bloebaum took the next two spots in 1:48.31 and 1:49.53, respectively. Wilburn (1:38.38), Jacob Foster (1:39.07) and Clasen (1:40.32) then did the same in the 16 & Under event. Wilburn took down the meet record in the process. Clark (1:37.08) and Ethan Beach (1:38.89) took second and third in the open 200 free preceded by Daniel Krueger in blistering 1:35.58.

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American Record in 400 IM Propels Chase Kalisz to Next Step

Georgia’s Chase Kalisz. Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

NCAA DI editorial coverage is proudly sponsored by Adidas. Visit for more information on our sponsor. For all the latest coverage, check out our event coverage page.

By David Rieder.

In 2015, Chase Kalisz arrived at the NCAA championships in Iowa City, Iowa, as the two-time defending NCAA champion and American record-holder in the 400 IM. But Kalisz was off that weekend, and he finished more than three seconds behind Will Licon and five seconds off his best time in his signature event.

Two years and one Olympic medal later, Kalisz has again redefined the limits of imagination in the short course yards version of his signature race—even if he’s not convinced his time of 3:33.42 is all that impressive in the grand scheme of things.

“Records are always nice, but short course, they don’t really make much sense to me,” he said. “I don’t think that’s anywhere comparable to my 4:06.”

Kalisz, of course, was referring to the 4:06.75 he swam on his way to an Olympic silver medal in Rio, the course in which he judges himself and compares himself to the rest of the world.

So even after his disappointing NCAAs junior year, it was failing to improve at the World Championships that summer that crushed Kalisz. In the 400 IM at that meet, he won a bronze medal in 4:10.05, eight tenths slower than he had swum at the same meet two years earlier.

As soon as he got home from Kazan, Russia, Kalisz had the aid of the great Michael Phelps in translating his disappointment into motivation.

“Right after that meet I got a text from Michael, and he said, ‘Let’s go to workout.’ It was a Sunday, three days after World Championships,” Kalisz said.

Kalisz was in Tempe, Ariz., preparing to spend a year training alongside Phelps under Bob Bowman in hopes of making his first Olympic team. There would be no reclamation of his NCAA title—all long course, all the time.

It worked.

Kalisz made his first Olympic team in the 400 IM and made it to his first Olympic final as the No. 1 qualifier. He swam well behind the Japanese duo of Kosuke Hagino and Daiya Seto for the first 200 yards but made a run on the breaststroke leg, turning for the final 100 meters just behind Hagino.

For a few brief moments, it looked as though Kalisz might catch up and win Olympic gold, but he had to settle for a No. 2 finish and becoming the first-fastest performance in history.

“The best thing that happened to me was getting a silver medal,” Kalisz said. “It will probably motivate me until the next Olympics. It’s something I’m not going to forget, being as close as I was. I think I swam the perfect race, and I don’t know how much faster I could have gone at the Olympic Games, but I’m not going to be completely satisfied.”

The night he won an Olympic silver medal, Kalisz explained that he was gung-ho to return to training, but that didn’t mean he had the smoothest fall and winter as he battled a bit of post-Olympic malaise.

“This hasn’t been the easiest year,” Kalisz said. “It never really is post-Olympic year. You just have to stay mentally focused. There’s a lot of things I would like to have done differently this year and I think I could have perfected, but I’m here now, I’m happy with my progress, and I’m looking forward to my career post-NCAAs and hopefully making a spot this summer.”

Yes, already, Kalisz has his sights set on his forthcoming professional career and the push to the next Olympic Games. He explained that he has at least another year at Georgia as he finishes his requirements towards graduation, but he’s not sure yet where he will be living and training after that.

But that doesn’t mean there wasn’t some deep meaning to what he accomplished in what he thinks could be his final short course 400 IM, particularly as he swam in the final with fellow Georgia Bulldogs Jay Litherland and Gunnar Bentz.

“I’m happy with the time and how I put the race together,” Kalisz said. “The titles are always nice, and at the end of the day it’s just a piece of hardware. I’m more proud of how Jay and Gunnar did. I got to race with those two every single day in workout, and those two are a big part of my life. It meant a lot to have both of them in the final.”

Kalisz was proud, too, of putting himself in the right frame of mind before he swam his 3:33, more than 2.5 seconds faster than any other man in history. After all, he was just a day removed from a disappointing fifth-place finish in the 200 IM.

“I was really in a bad place after my 200 IM and even before my nap,” he said. “I really didn’t feel that great this morning. I laid down, and I had all these bad, negative feelings going through my head. I woke up and said, ‘I got one more to go. Why not go for it and see what happens?’”

He went for it, and the entire country saw exactly what happened. Kalisz has one more NCAA event to go, his so-called fun event in the 200 fly—a race he feels more prepared to tackle after his redshirt experience.

“I feel a lot better than I previously have going into the third day,” he said. “I think my training last year mentally prepared me for swimming multiple events.”

And when that’s over, Kalisz will head back to his comfort zone—all long course, all the time.

All commentaries are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Swimming World Magazine nor its staff.

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2017 NCAA D1 Men’s Swim & Dive Championships: Day 3 Finals Photo Gallery

Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

NCAA DI editorial coverage is proudly sponsored by Adidas. Visit for more information on our sponsor. For all the latest coverage, check out our event coverage page.

On night three more records came crashing down. Swimming World’s Peter H. Bick has been on deck capturing all of the action.

Chase Kalisz opened the session in American, NCAA, and US Open record time in the 400 IM. Caeleb Dressel surged home in the 100 butterfly to smash the American, NCAA and US Open records and out touch Olympic gold medalist Joseph Schooling.

Ryan Murphy completed a historic career sweep of the 100 backstroke titles. Steele Johnson won his second NCAA Diving title in as many days.

The Texas Longhorns ended the night with impressive speed, taking down the NCAA and US Open records. The Alabama crew racing in lane one finished second, also under the old marks.

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Degree of Difficulty – Diving from a Parents’ Perspective

Photo Courtesy: Matthew S. DeMaria

NCAA DI editorial coverage is proudly sponsored by Adidas. Visit for more information on our sponsor. For all the latest coverage, check out our event coverage page.

By Michael J. Stott

It is in the afternoons at NCAAs when diving takes center stage. During three meter prelims I went looking for some diving parents so I could get a better meet perspective through the eyes of an aquatic community that many times plays second fiddle to swimmers.

Trolling the stands I hit the jackpot – or should I say the motherlode. Zeroing in on a male glued to his handheld device and an animated female I was sure I found prototypical dive parents. “You look like dive parents,“  I offered.

“We are,” came the response. I had found Mandy and David Hixon, mother and father of Olympic silver medalist (with Sam Dorman in the men’s synchronized 3m springboard) and two-time NCAA 1 and 3 meter champion Michael Hixon of Indiana. Both parents are coaches. David is the men’s basketball coach at Amherst College and Mandy is the men’s and women’s dive coach at University of Massachusetts. Mandy was a two-time NCAA All-American at Ohio State and competed in 1984 Olympic Trials.

She was also Michael’s dive coach until he went to college, initially at the University of Texas, where he won his two springboard titles. Early on Michael was a talented athlete, quarterback, point guard, middie in lacrosse. It was in ninth grade when he committed to diving full time realizing that size (5’7”) was going to restrict his stick and ball horizons.

“Divers seem to have different personalities,” I said.

“They do. They’re a little bit crazy, aren’t they?” agreed Mandy. “From the start they are kind of flippy, twisty kids. They are the ones who climb out of their cribs when they are younger. It takes a really good athlete to be a diver,” she said. “You can’t have a level of fear. You have to step beyond it. Divers have to want to do that. It is what separates them from doing diving or not.”  That and a grounding in excellent fundamentals.

“Michael came along really quickly. He had a great work ethic and was willing to work hard to get to the next level. Thursday night on the 1 meter I am sure he would have liked to have won,” said Mandy “but he missed his reverse. Second place isn’t bad at the NCAAs but he would always like to win,” she said. Friday night Hixon finished fifth with 455.35 points on the 3 meter after qualifying third. Only a subpar second dive kept him from notching second behind Tennessee’s Steel Johnson with 502.20.

Hixon was originally recruited out of high school by Duke, and now Indiana coach, Drew Johansen. When Johansen moved to Indiana Hixon transferred from Texas to Bloomington. “It was his number one reason,” said Mandy. “He felt Drew was technically and technologically excellent and they have the right mentality together. The really work well,“ she said. He thought Michael could make the Olympic team which Michael wanted very much. It has been his dream since ninth grade. He has always wanted to be the best.”

“Whatever he does we’re proud of him.” As for meeting his own expectations mom reports that that winning a silver medal in Rio was pretty special. “I think he has set new goals,” she says, goals which include besting the Chinese in Tokyo whom he respects but considers beatable.”

When asked if she ever got nervous before his competitions., Mandy responded “Oh yeah.”

“We try not to show it,” said David. “His focus is on the deck. We’re just here to cheer him on.”

“I just want him to be happy. I’m just trying to be a good parent now,” says Mandy.

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Miami Open: Rafael Nadal beats Dudi Sela to reach third round

Rafael Nadal

Fifth seed Rafael Nadal beat Israel’s Dudi Sela 6-3 6-4 to reach the third round of the Miami Open.

The 30-year-old Spaniard broke his opponent in the fourth game before going on to claim the first set in 35 minutes.

Nadal saved two break points at 3-2 down in the second set and then broke Sela in the next game.

Nadal has reached the final in Miami four times but has yet to win the tournament.

There was little trouble for the other top seeds in action on Friday.

Second seed Kei Nishikori of Japan comfortably overcame South Africa’s Kevin Anderson 6-4 6-3, while Canadian third seed Milos Raonic beat Viktor Troicki of Serbia 6-3 7-5.

There was a surprise when Russia’s Elena Vesnina, fresh from her victory at Indian Wells, suffered a 3-6 6-4 7-5 defeat by world number 594 Ajla Tomljanovic, the wild card from Croatia.

Romanian third seed Simona Halep was pushed to three sets by 19-year-old Japanese player Naomi Osaka before advancing 6-4 2-6 6-3.

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Texas Annihilates 200 Medley Relay NCAA and US Open Record

Photo Courtesy: Peter Bick

NCAA DI editorial coverage is proudly sponsored by Adidas. Visit for more information on our sponsor. For all the latest coverage, check out our event coverage page.

Just 24 hours after breaking the 3-minute barrier in the 400 medley relay, Texas had a similar performance in the 200 medley relay Friday night, smashing the NCAA and US Open record with a 1:21.54. That smashed Michigan’s 1:22.27 from the 2013 NCAA Championships. In fact, the top two teams were under that record. John Shebat (20.84), Will Licon (22.91), Joseph Schooling (19.45) and Brett Ringgold (18.34) are the new record holders in that relay.

Alabama swam in second with a 1:21.89, the second fastest swim in history. The Crimson Tide were led by Connor Oslin’s 20.39 backstroke split that was the fastest in the field. Oslin, Pavel Romanov, Luke Kaliszak and Zane Waddell swam for the Tide on that relay. California was third at 1:22.28. Oslin, Licon, Schooling and Caeleb Dressel had the fastest splits for each stroke on that relay. Dressel swam a 17.93, a little slower than his 17.71 this morning.

Missouri (1:22.48), Florida (1:23.08), NC State (1:23.18), Stanford (1:23.74) and Louisville (1:24.06) also competed in the A-final.

Texas now has five NCAA titles in the 200 medley relay. The 2017 team joins the teams from 2003, 2001, 2000 and 1991 to win the 200 medley relay at the NCAA championships for the Longhorns.

 Event 14  Men 200 Yard Medley Relay
         NCAA: N 1:22.27  3/29/2013 Michigan
                          M Ortiz, B Ortiz, S Fletcher, Z Turk
 Championship: C 1:22.27  3/29/2013 Michigan
                          M Ortiz, B Ortiz, S Fletcher, Z Turk
     American: A 1:22.40  3/27/2015 California
                          R Murphy, C Katis, J Lynch, T Messerschmidt
   U. S. Open: O 1:22.27  3/29/2013 Michigan
                          M Ortiz, B Ortiz, S Fletcher, Z Turk
         Pool: P 1:22.17            Michigan
    School                              Prelims     Finals Points 
                            === Championship Final ===                            
  1 Texas                               1:23.17    1:21.54P  40  
     1) Shebat, John SO               2) r:0.30 Licon, Will SR        
     3) r:0.26 Schooling, Joseph JR   4) r:0.45 Ringgold, Brett JR    
    r:+0.61  10.28        20.84 (20.84)
          31.03 (10.19)       43.75 (22.91)
           52.45 (8.70)     1:03.20 (19.45)
         1:11.91 (8.71)     1:21.54 (18.34)
  2 Alabama                             1:23.93    1:21.89P  34  
     1) Oslin, Connor SR              2) r:0.13 Romanov, Pavel SR     
     3) r:0.17 Kaliszak, Luke JR      4) r:0.14 Waddell, Zane FR      
     r:+0.59  9.99        20.39 (20.39)
          30.71 (10.32)       43.69 (23.30)
           52.76 (9.07)     1:03.63 (19.94)
         1:12.15 (8.52)     1:21.89 (18.26)
  3 California                          1:23.27    1:22.28   32  
     1) Murphy, Ryan SR               2) r:0.26 Hoppe, Connor JR      
     3) r:0.24 Lynch, Justin JR       4) r:0.16 Sendyk, Pawel FR      
    r:+0.53  10.05        20.47 (20.47)
          30.93 (10.46)       43.63 (23.16)
           52.65 (9.02)     1:03.67 (20.04)
         1:12.33 (8.66)     1:22.28 (18.61)
  4 Missouri                            1:23.29    1:22.48   30  
     1) Hein, Daniel FR               2) r:0.22 Schwingenschloebian SR
     3) r:0.19 Sansoucie, Andrew SR   4) r:0.21 Chadwick, Michael SR  
    r:+0.50  10.56        21.24 (21.24)
          31.37 (10.13)       44.17 (22.93)
           52.99 (8.82)     1:04.03 (19.86)
         1:12.87 (8.84)     1:22.48 (18.45)
  5 Florida                             1:23.37    1:23.08   28  
     1) Blyzinskyj, Jack SR           2) r:0.19 Bray, Chandler FR     
     3) r:0.14 Szaranek, Mark JR      4) r:0.27 Dressel, Caeleb JR    
    r:+0.57  10.56        21.26 (21.26)
          31.94 (10.68)       45.07 (23.81)
           53.91 (8.84)     1:05.15 (20.08)
         1:13.62 (8.47)     1:23.08 (17.93)
  6 NC State                            1:23.53    1:23.18   26  
     1) Stewart, Coleman FR           2) r:0.17 Hren, Derek SR        
     3) r:0.14 Ress, Justin SO        4) r:0.31 Held, Ryan JR         
    r:+0.59  10.50        21.17 (21.17)
          31.81 (10.64)       44.81 (23.64)
           53.64 (8.83)     1:05.05 (20.24)
         1:13.49 (8.44)     1:23.18 (18.13)
  7 Stanford                            1:23.97    1:23.74   24  
     1) Dudzinski, Ryan SO            2) r:0.13 Anderson, Matt SO     
     3) r:0.29 Liang, Andrew JR       4) r:0.31 Perry, Sam JR         
         r:+0.55          21.64 (21.64)
                              45.05 (23.41)
                            1:04.98 (19.93)
         1:13.92 (8.94)     1:23.74 (18.76)
  8 Louisville                          1:23.87    1:24.06   22  
     1) Tarasevich, Grigory SR        2) r:0.10 Claverie, Carlos JR   
     3) r:0.16 Quallen, Josh SR       4) r:0.23 Carroll, Trevor SR    
    r:+0.56  10.50        21.38 (21.38)
          31.59 (10.21)       44.97 (23.59)
           53.81 (8.84)     1:05.12 (20.15)
         1:14.00 (8.88)     1:24.06 (18.94)
Men - Team Rankings - Through Event 14                      
  1. Texas                           391.5   2. California                        253
  3. Florida                         224.5   4. NC State                          196
  5. Indiana                         189.5   6. Stanford                          160
  7. Southern Cali                   142.5   8. Univ of Georgia                   141
  9. Missouri                        135.5  10. Louisville                      102.5
 11. Auburn                          100.5  12. Alabama                            98
 13. Arizona State                      68  14. South Carolina                     60
 15. Purdue                             57  16. Texas A&M                          56
 17. Tennessee                          55  18. Michigan                           46
 19. Wisconsin                          33  19. Ohio St                            33
 21. University of Miami                31  22. Lsu                                28
 22. Virginia Tech                      28  24. Harvard                            21
 25. Arizona                          19.5  26. Minnesota                          18
 27. Penn St                            16  28. Notre Dame                         12
 28. Duke                               12  30. George Washington                   9
 31. Denver                              7  31. Florida State                       7
 33. UNC                                 6  34. Kentucky                            4
 34. Northwestern                        4  36. Cornell                             3
 37. Hawaii                              2  37. Penn                                2
 39. Pittsburgh                          1

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