Austin Speedo Sectional Championships, Night 1: Dakota Luther Maintains Fourth National Rank

Dakota Luther-2015
Photo Courtesy: Andy Ringgold/Aringo Photos

It was a fast first night of swimming at the Southern Zone Speedo Sectional Series in Austin, Texas. The meet, which runs July 7 – 10, 2016 is a preliminary/final event hosted by Longhorn Aquatics.

Perhaps the most notable races were the in the 200 butterfly, where both of the respective winners – Dakota Luther and David Moore – dominated their fields. 16-year-old Luther maintained her fourth nationally ranked position with her impressive win.

Women’s 100 Meter Free:

First place went to top finals qualifier Leah Troskot (LSU) at a 56.17. 16-year-old Diana Dunn (ASC) but nearly half a second off her prelims time to come in second in a 56.94. That mark places her top-16 in the Nation for 16-year-olds in the 100 meter freestyle. Third went to her 15-year-old teammate Ella Collins (58.01), who touched just slightly ahead of Regan Barney (58.04).

Men’s 100 Meter Free:

There was a tie for first between top entry Nicholas Carlson (LCA) and Michael Thibert (MAC), who both touched the wall in a 51.75. Both swimmers posted a season best in the event. Third place was LSU’s Joao Victor Mescolote at a 52.22, while fourth went to LAC’s Alexander Zettle (52.39).

Women’s 200 Meter Back:

Kaitlyn Swinney (RICE) took nearly a half-second off her entry time to win the finals in a 2:17.47 in a head-to-head race with Ellery Parish (SASA). Parish earned second in a 2:17.65, less than two-tenths behind Swinney. The battle for third was between Brittany Thompson (NTRO) and Claire Smith (CFSC), with Thompson hitting the wall first in a 2:19.35. Smith took fourth in a 2:19.61.

Men’s 200 Meter Back:

Stephen Cheng (LAC) crushed the competition in the final heat by over two seconds with a 2:05.19 winning time. In addition to the win, Cheng took over a second and a half off his entry time. Second place went to 15-year-old Michael Calvillo (AAAA) at a 2:07.55, while Sean Messer sealed the third position by a slight margin at a 2:07.88. Zachary Yeadon (AAAA) was fourth by three one-hundredths (2:07.91).

Women’s 200 Meter Fly:

Austin Swim Club’s Dakota Luther took the finals heat by over four seconds. Her 2:11.62 winning time ranks her fourth in the nation for 16-year-old girls in the event. Luther also cut nearly a second and a half from her time for the win. Second place went to Hannah Feng in a 2:15.77. Feng also had an impressive 1.65 second time drop. Third went to Jessica Sloan (AGS) at a 2:18.56, while fourth was Kara Eisenmann (LAC) at a 2:19.10.

Men’s 200 Meter Fly:

David Moore (SASA) maintained a powerful lead throughout the men’s race for a winning 2:02.58 time. He took an impressive 2.56 seconds off his entry time for the win. Second went to Garrett Carson (TFA), who cut over a second off his entry time to win silver in a 2:05.49. Third went to Beau Fusilier (2:05.85) and fourth was taken by Duncan Lee in a 2:06.47.

Women’s 800 Meter Freestyle Relay:

The Austin Swim Club A Team took the competition field by over twelve seconds. Although the team (comprised of Diana Dunn, Kendall Shields, Ella Collins and Dakota Luther) added over ten seconds from their seed time, their 2:27.07 was good enough for the win. Coming in second was the North Texas Nadadores A Team (8:39.35), touching just ahead of the Alamo Area Aquatics Association’s A Team (8:39.85).

Men’s 800 Meter Freestyle Relay:

It was a closer battle for the win on the men’s side. With the Austin Swim Club’s A Team taking the win less than a second ahead of the Alamo Area Aquatic Association’s A Team (7:45.66 and 7:46.55, respectively). Austin Swim Club’s winning team was comprised of Matthew Willenbring, Jack Dunworth, Grant Thompson and Josh Artmann. The third team was over five seconds behind and went to the Cyprus Fairbanks Swim Club’s A Team at a 7:51.92.

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