Championship Heat: Leah Smith of Virginia left no doubt who the top distance swimmer in the country is this year, recording a start-to-finish win in 15:34.46. Cal freshman Cierra Runge (15:46.46) held on for dear life to take second ahead of Jessica Thielmann of Florida (15:46.68) and a fast-closing Sarah Henry of Texas A&M (15:46.83). Georgia's Amber McDermott (15:53.19) took fifth while heat three winner and Bulldog teammate Rachel Zilinskas grabbed sixth in 15:55.22. Heat four winner Sammy Harrison (15:56.01) places seventh and Bonnie Brandon of Arizona takes the final spot in the top eight in 15:56.60.
Heat 4: Oregon State's Sammy Harrison completes a near wire-to-wire win in 15:56.01 while Michigan's Gillian Ryan explodes over the final 200 to steal second in 15:59.31.
Heat 3: Georgia's Rachel Zilinkas took control at the 1000 and rolled to a best time so far of 15:55.22 ahead of Wisconsin's Danielle Valley (16:02.82) who led for much of the race. Tennessee's Morgan Dickson was third in 16:06.72.
Heat 2: Pittsburgh's Kaleign Ritter (16:05.86) made a move at the 2/3 point of the race and eventually held off Air Force's Genevieve Miller (16:10.58) while Wisconsin's Jenny Holtzen is third (16:13.10).
Heat 1: Towson's Macey Arnold (16:12.69) led from start to finish, holding off a late charge from Florida's Autumn Finke (16:13.93) and Virginia Alison Haulsee (16:14.60).
Leah Smith, Virginia - 1650 Freestyle
On winning two titles
“I owe it all to my coaches and teammates. They push me every day, and I think last year left me a little bit hungry. I was out for redemption because I didn’t have the best meet. So, this year, my teammates and I have all been really positive, and we’re trying to make history.”
Cal now leads 400.5 over Georgia (335.5). Stanford is third with 264, then Virginia (188), Texas A&M (168) and Louisville (151) and USC (128).
200 Backstroke - Courtney Bartholomew (1:49.35) made a valiant effort but Missy Franklin was not to be denied, recording a time of 1:47.91 in her final individual collegiate race. Denver's Sam Corea continued her incredible meet with a third place finish in 1:50.87. Kentucky's Danielle Galyer (1:51.68), Georgia's Kylie Stewart (1:51.70), Cal's Melanie Klaren (1:51.83), Cal's Elizabeth Pelton (1:52.08) and last year's champ Brooklyn Snodgrass of Indiana (1:52.23) round out the top eight.
Consolation Final - Michigan's Claar Smiddy swims a sold back half to win in 1:51.88 ahead of Ashlee Linn of Florida (1:52.01) and Lisa Bratton of Texas A&M (1:52.11).
Missy Franklin, California - 200 Backstroke
How is this different from the other level of competitions?
“I think I’ve said it before but collegiate swimming is kind of a totally different sport itself within swimming. And that team atmosphere is something that I wanted so bad, and it’s something that I could never expect to feel like this. The tears were definitely flowing in these past two years. Even last year knowing what it felt to get third and watch Georgia win, and have that gut feeling of knowing how bad you wanted it. And then this year to be the ones running through the tunnel and being the ones jumping in. It really made me appreciate what we were able to do, and what Teri was able to help us achieve.”
Thoughts on 200 back
“I was really happy about it. I had never been under 1:48 before, so I’m really excited about that. The whole swim felt way better than what I expected to.”
Thoughts on where this ranks
“Every race is just so different, especially the things that surround it and the people that are surrounding me when I swim different times. It all means something different. London being with Team USA and doing it there was something completely different than being here and accomplishing these points for my team. For me, it’s been absolutely incredible, and that 200 free, I was so happy that I was able to go out. Teri looked at me right before and she just said ‘Go make them remember you.’ And to have a coach that believed in me so strongly and to be surrounded by my second family like that will forever be one of my favorite swims in my heart – not because of the time but because of the people I had supporting me.”
Is there was a way to sum up your collegiate swimming now that you're finished your individual events?
“Oh you know, it's so hard, I'm so grateful for the experience that I've had. You know, it's been a very emotional couple of days and I am just so proud of my team and what we've accomplished here and this is honestly the perfect way to end it. Like this is what I gave things up for and the best part is, is it doesn't even feel like I gave anything up because I gained so much.”
Is there anything that you could share with the young people or the parents that are out there, wondering if they should go into college swimming or where they should end up?
“Yeah, you know I would say that the experience that I've had even just the two years is worth so much more than anything I could have got given some opportunities I had after the Olympics. The friendships that I made and the things I've learned about myself, just being able to be a normal college athlete and student -- for me, that's completely priceless and I would make that decision 100 times over again.”
Scoring after the 200 back has Cal with 445.5 followed by Georgia (349.5), Stanford (264), Virginia (206) and Texas A&M (174.5).
100 Freestyle - Stanford's Simone Manuel was a bullet from start to finish, gaining a new NCAA and American record 46.09. Teammate Lia Neal was second in 47.13 followed by Florida's Natalie Hinds (47.1) and Wisconsin's Ivy Martin (47.24). Georgia's Chantal Van Landgeham was fifth in 47.48 followed by Beryl Gastaldello (47.73). Cal's Farida Osman and UGA's Maddie Locus tied for seventh at 47.88.
Consolation Final - Only .15 separate first and list in this heat as Olivia Smoliga of Georgia out reached the field in 48.23. Kasia Wilk of USC takes second in 48.24 with with Alyson Ackman of Penn State third in 48.27.
Simone Manuel, Stanford - 100 Freestyle
On her second title here and retaking the record
“Yeah, I was pretty excited and just wanted to put together a good race. The third day of this race is a little tough after swimming a lot of races and I put together a good race and I was happy with the outcomes.”
On squinting at the time and if she expected to see a record
“When I looked over to the right I saw my team cheering. That was all I could take away from it. I don’t have my glasses on so I couldn’t really see the time but when I did I was pretty shocked and excited.”
Cal now leads 460-384 over Georgia. Stanford sits third with 301 then Virginia (206), Texas A&M (189) and Louisville (151).
200 Breaststroke - A trend is developing tonight with swimmers winning NCAA titles by leading from start to finish at Minnesota's Kierra Smith turned that trick by going the third-fastest collegiate time ever at 2:04.56. She held burst past Laura Simon on the last 50 (2:06.65) while Stanford's Katie Olsen was third in 2:07.06. Defending champion and NCAA record holder Emma Reaney took fourth in 2:07.10. Taking fifth was SEC champ Kaylin Burchell (2:07.75). She was followed by Tennessee's Molyy Hannis (2:07.90), Texas A&M's Ashley McGregor (2:08.67) and Virginia Tech's Weronika Paluszek (2:08.95).
Consolation Final - Michigan's Emily Kopas (2:07.88) storms back over the final 50 to win over Annie Lazor of Auburn (2:08.41) and Missouri's Abby Duncan (2:08.74).
Kierra Smith, Minnesota - 200 Breaststroke
“I just wanted to do what I did this morning. This race comes naturally to me. I tried to not over think it today and stick with what I do best.”
Do you think about your race or your technique?
“Technique for sure. Every stroke.”
Cal now leads Georgia, 461-388. Stanford is still third at 317 with Virginia fourth with 223 followed by A&M (201) and Louisville (151).
200 Butterfly - Florida State's Chelsea Britt started out fast and had the lead at the 100 but was chased down by the field led by Kelsi Worrell (1:51.11) who sweeps the butterfly events at this year's NCAA Championships. The top four had a strong SEC flavor with Kentucky senior Christina Bechtel (1:52.08) taking runner-up honors followed by Georgia's Hali Flickinger (1:52.73) and Lauren Harrington (1:53.92). Louisville's Tanja Kylliainan takes fifth in 1:54.62 and was followed by Indiana's Gia Dalesandro (1:54.66), Cal's Noemi Thomas (1:54.94) and Florida's State Chelsea Britt (1:55.98).
Consolation Final - USC's Chelsea Chenault wins the consol with a strong effort in the middle 100 of the race in 1:53.17, holding off a charging Noelle Tarazona of UCLA (1:54.65) and Jasmine Mau of Cal (1:54.85).
Kelsi Worrell, Louisville
On if she thought she had the range for the 200
“I had hoped, but I haven’t swum it very much and so I don’t have so much experience but I was just kind of hoping with my training that I’ve done this year that I can maybe drop a bomb.”
On if the race felt better than in the morning
“So much better than this morning. This morning was so painful. We just talked about really relaxing a lot more and that made all the difference. I was able to come home so much better. No ‘t-rexing’ tonight.”
Team score entering the platform competition have Cal leading 479-420 over Georgia. Stanford is third with 319 followed by Virginia (223), Texas A&M (201) and Louisville (185).
Round 1: Defending champion Haley Ishimatsu of USC (67.50) takes hte early lead over Arizona State's Mara Aiacoboae (67.20) and Jessica Parratto of Indiana (63.00). Murphy Bromberg of Texas (54.00), Carey Chen of Michigan (51.25), Yu Zhou of Minnesota (49.50), Rebecca Hamperian of Kentucky (48.75) and Cheyenne Cousineau of Miami of Florida (48.00) round out the top eight.
Round 2: Parratto (143.00) rises from third to first while Aiacoboae (130.20) holds firm in second. Bromberg (128.25) rises a spot to third while Ishimatsu (127.95) slides from first to fourth. Hamperian (109.50) jumps two spots to fifth while Zhou (108.70) remains in sixth. Cousineau (105.60) moves up one spot to seventh while Chen (86.35) slides from fifth to eighth.
Round 3: Parratto (217.25) extends her lead over the field with Ishimatsu (199.95) moving from fourth back up into second. Aiacoboae (187.80) slips a spot to third while Zhou (180.70) jumps from sixth to fourth. Cousineau (178.20) also climbs, from seventh to fifth, while Bromberg (171.15) sinks from third to sixth. Hamperian (170.40) falls from fifth to seventh with Chen (151.45) remianing eighth.
Round 4: Parratto (301.40) looks destined to win her first NCAA title as she leads two-time defending champ Ishimatsu (269.25) for the top spot. Cousineau (252.45) rises from fifth to third with Aiacoboae (246.30) dropping a spot to fourth. Zhou (237.70) slides one spot to fifth followed by Hamperian (237.60), Bromberg (233.55) and Carey Chen (205.45).
Round 5: Indiana freshman Jessica Parratto (367.00) unseats outgoing two-time defending tower champ Haley Ishimatsu of USC (339.65) for her first NCAA title. Miami of Florida's Cheyenne Cousineau (318.05) takes the bronze over Arizona State's Mara Aiacoboae (313.50). Minnesota's Yu Zhou (301.70) earned her third top five finish of the week while Murphy Bromberg of Texas (297.55) grabbed her best finish of the week at sixth. Kentucky's Rebecca Hamperian (296.40) and Michigan's Carey Chen (251.05) rounded out the top eight.
Round 1: North Carolina's Elissa Dawson (66.00) takes the early lead over Emma Ivory-Ganja of Texas (64.50) and Annika Lenz of UCLA (62.00). LSU's Madison Sthamann (61.50) and Kaylea Arnett (60.20) begin consols in fourth and fifth, respectively, and are followed by Purdue's MacKenzie Tweardy (54.60), Stanford's Lillian Hinrichs (52.80) and Kentucky's Christa Cabot (52.70).
Round 2: Ivory-Ganja (131.70) takes over the lead in this round with Lenz (129.20) moving up a spot into second. Tweardy (121.80) jumps three spots into third while Arnett (119.00) climbs a spot into fourth. Cabot (111.20) climbs from eighth to fifth while Hinrichs (109.05) goes from seventh to sixth. Dawson (106.60) plummets from first to seventh while Sthamann (90.30) falls from third to eighth.
Round 3: Lenz (190.80) rises from second to first while Arnett (184.25) ascends from fourth to second. Ivory-Ganja (177.90) slips from first to third while Cabot (173.60) climbs a spot to fourth. Tweardy (171.30) slides two spots into fifth while Hinrichs (161.25) holds at sixth. Dawson (159.40) and Sthamann (154.30) remain seventh and eighth.
Round 4: For the fourth straight round, we have a new leader. Arnett (251.45) climbs from second to first while Tweardy (236.55) climbs from fifth to second. Lenz (231.30) slips from first to third while Dawson (229.40) jumps from seventh to fourth. Ivory-Ganja (227.40) slips two more spots to fifth while Hinrichs (220.05) continues to be sixth. Cabot (215.60) falls from fourth to seventh while Sthamann (203.80) stays in eighth.
Round 5: Virginia Tech's Kaylea Arnett (296.25) just edges out Emma Ivory-Ganja of Texas (296.20) for the top spot in the diving consolation final. UCLA's Annika Lenz (294.30) does likewise to Purdue's MacKenzie Tweardy (294.15) for third place. Stanford's Liliian Hinrichs (287.25) rises one spot in the final round to finish fifth as does Kentucky's Christa Cabot (279.60) to sixth. LSU's Madison Sthamann (279.00) also climbs a position while North Carolina's Elissa Dawson (274.40) slid from fourth to eighth in the final round.
Jessica Parratto - Platform
On an NCAA title
“Honestly, it feels incredible. I was just going in trying to be consistent, have fun, not let expectations get to me. I’m just really glad that I did that, really did have fun and honestly couldn’t be happier. I love my team, I’m glad they were right by the pool to support me every step of the way.”
Full season culminate in an NCAA title?
“Feels really, really good. I’ve been really focusing on all three events all year and springboard has been new to me. I’m really glad to have gotten into one final on 3-meter and did pretty well for myself on the platform.
After diving, Cal lead Georgia, 479-420, with Stanford third at 323. Virginia is 100 points back at 223 followed by Texas A&M (201), Louisville (185), USC (163), Texas (150), and Indiana (126).
400 Freestyle Relay - Stanford (3:08.40) sets a new American record thanks to a superhuman anchor leg of 45.79 by Simone Manuel. California takes second in 3:09.76, helped greatly by a 46.66 leadoff by Missy Franklin in her final collegiate swim. Georgia (3:12.08) grabbed third. Texas A&M (3:13.20), needing a fifth-place finish to tie Virginia in the team standings, grabs fourth by .01 over N.C. State (3:13.21). Wisconsin (3:13.84), Florida (3:14.27) and Auburn (3:15.49) round out the top eight.
Consolation Final - Minnesota (3:15.40) holds off a spirited Texas (3:15.50) that was fighting for and needed a runner-up finish, to get seventh place in the team standings. Louisville ended an incredible meet with a third place finish in 3:15.52.
California wins its first NCAA team championship since 2012 with a 513-452 win over two-time defending champion Georgia. Stanford finished third with 363. Thanks to the last relay, Texas A&M finishes fourth for the third year in a row with 231 with Virginia (229) right behind them with a school record fifth place finish. Louisville also had a school record finish of sixth (197) followed by Texas (164), USC (163), Florida (129), and Indiana (126).
Teri McKeever, California
Thoughts on the championship
“Happy, relieved, it hasn’t sunk it. It has but it hasn’t. As a coach, it’s just wonderful to see how much it means to the girls.”
“They’re (previous championships) all different just because of the behind the scenes stuff and the to-day-to struggle and challenges and opportunities. Each one kind of has an story.”
Thoughts on Franklin’s two-year decision
“That was something we talked about the day after London, when I walked into her home to recruit her. I was standing in her kitchen and said ‘What do you want from this experience?’ We talked about how it needed to be two years and that she had an opportunity leading into the Olympics because of what she did in London. In this scenario, she could have the best of both.”