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NCAA Day Four Finals: Manuel's 45.56 100 Free Propels Stanford To Victory

NCAA Day Four Finals: Manuel's 45.56 100 Free Propels Stanford To Victory
Photo: © Erich Schlegel-USA TODAY Sports
Stanford captured its first NCAA women's swimming and diving title since 1998 in dominating fashion on Saturday. The Cardinal wrapped up the four-day championship meet at IUPUI Natatorium in Indianapolis with 526.5 points, while second-place Cal finished with 366 points -- the largest margin of victory at NCAAs since 2003. Altogether, Stanford won seven individual national titles and three relay championships, including four of its 10 titles on the meet's final day.

1650 FREESTYLE

NCAA Record: 15:03.92 (Katie Ledecky - Stanford, 2017)
Meet Record: 15:27.84 (Leah Smith - Virginia, 2016)​ 15:07.70 (Katie Ledecky, 2017)
American Record: 15:03.92 (Katie Ledecky - Stanford, 2017)
US Open Record: 15:03.92 (Katie Ledecky - Stanford, 2017)

Katie Ledecky​ went for this one -- no doubt about it. The G.O.A.T was out 4:32.10 at the 500 mark, a time that would have placed third in the individual event Thursday. She blazed through the 1000 in 9:06.90, a new NCAA and American record. After that, Ledecky started to fall off the pace of her own record but still won the event with a time of 15:07.70. She lapped everyone in this field except for ​Leah Smith​, who finished second with a 15:28.89. Huge points for Stanford here as it went 1-3-4 with ​Megan Byrnes​ finishing third in 15:50.87 and ​Leah Stevens ​finishing fourth in 15:52.36.

​1.) Katie Ledecky (Stanford):​ 15:07.70 (MEET RECORD)
2.) Leah Smith (Virginia): 15:28.89
3.) Megan Byrnes (Stanford): 15:50.87
4.) Leah Stevens (Stanford): 15:52.36
5.) Hannah Moore (NC State): 15:52.75
6.) Danielle Valley (Wisconsin): 15:53.22
7.) Joanna Evans (Texas): 15:54.46
8.) Ashley Neidigh (Auburn): 15:54.88


200 BACKSTROKE

NCAA Record: 1:47.84 (Elizabeth Pelton - California, 2013)
Meet Record: 1:47.84 (Elizabeth Pelton - California, 2013)
American Record: 1:47.84 (Elizabeth Pelton - California, 2013)
US Open Record: 1:47.84 (Elizabeth Pelton - California, 2013)

​Kathleen Baker ​of Cal led wire to wire with a winning time of 1:48.44 but not without some heat from the competition.​ Baker touched at the 100 in 53.22 with ​Alexia Zevnik​ of NC State nipping at her heels in 53.48. The third 50 is where Baker made a bit of an extra push, out-splitting Zevnik 27.6 to 28.0​. But getting back into the race was Kentucky freshman ​Asia Seidt​ who was only four-hundredths of a second behind Zevnik going into the final 50 yards. In the end, Zevnik touched second in 1:49.09, and Seidt grabbed third with a 1:49.63. ​Danielle Galyer​, the defending champion in this event, faded to fifth with a 1:50.49.

​1.) Kathleen Baker (California): 1:48.44
2.) Alexia Zevnik (NC State): 1:49.09
3.) Asia Seidt (Kentucky): 1:49.63
4.) Tasija Karosas (Texas): 1:49.91
5.) Danielle Galyer (Kentucky): 1:50.49
6.) Clara Smiddy (Michigan): 1:50.71
7.) Kennedy Goss (Indiana): 1:50.94
8.) Ali Galyer (Kentucky): 1:51.05


100 FREESTYLE

NCAA Record: 46.09 (Simone Manuel - Stanford, 2015) 45.56 (Simone Manuel, 2017)
Meet Record: 46.09 (Simone Manuel - Stanford, 2015) 45.56 (Simone Manuel, 2017)
American Record: 46.09 (Simone Manuel - Stanford, 2015) 45.56 (Simone Manuel, 2017)
US Open Record: 46.09 (Simone Manuel - Stanford, 2015) 45.56 (Simone Manuel, 2017)

​SIMONE MANUEL! ​What did we just witness? The Stanford Cardinal just unleashed the fastest 100-yard freestyle in history. She blazed through the first 50 yards in 21.90 --  a more-than-respectable 50 free time -- and stormed home to finish in an unfathomable 45.56. NCAA and American record by over half a second? Check. First woman under the 46-second barrier? Check. Another win for the Stanford Cardinal? Check. What a race... ​Olivia Smoliga​ of Georgia grabbed the silver with a 46.30, and ​Mallory Comerford​ of Louisville touched for bronze in 46.35 -- both incredible swims.​

1.) Simone Manuel (Stanford): 45.56 (NCAA, American, US Open Record)
2.) Olivia Smoliga (Georgia): 46.30
3.) Mallory Comerford (Louisville): 46.35
4.) Lia Neal (Stanford): 46.76
5.) Farida Osman (California): 47.07
6.) Beryl Gastaldello (Texas A&M): 47.54
7.) Chantal Van Landeghem (Georgia): 47.54
8.) Abbey Weitzeil (California): 47.79


200 BREASTSTROKE 

NCAA Record: 2:03.59 (Lilly King - Indiana, 2016) 2:03.18 (Lilly King, 2017)
Meet Record: 2:03.59 (Lilly King - Indiana, 2016) 2:03.18 (Lilly King, 2017)
American Record: 2:03.59 (Lilly King - Indiana, 2016) 2:03.18 (Lilly King, 2017)
US Open Record: 2:03.59 (Lilly King - Indiana, 2016) 2:03.18 (Lilly King, 2017)

​Lilly King​ is a gamer. No question about it. Whatsoever. King just unleashed a new NCAA, American, and U.S. Open record with a scorching 2:03.18 in the 200 breast. She went out guns blazing in 58.32 to the 100, a time that would have placed fifth in the individual event on Friday night and held on to take the win. ​Kierra Smith​ of Minnesota made a huge move on the third 50, out-splitting King 31.75 to 32.53, but ran out of room and finished second with a 2:03.5 -- also under the old record. This makes Smith the second-fastest performer of all time and gives her the second-fastest time in NCAA history as well. ​Emily Escobedo​ of UMBC snuck in for bronze in 2:05.20 ahead of ​Sydney Pickrem ​of Texas A&M in 2:05.23. There was a ton of depth in this field, with two women at 2:03 and four women at 2:05. ​

1.) Lilly King (Indiana): 2:03.18 (NCAA, American, US Open Record)
2.) Kierra Smith (Minnesota): 2:03.55
3.) Emily Escobedo (UMBC): 2:05.20
4.) Sydney Pickrem (Texas A&M): 2:05.23
5.) Kayla Brumbaum (NC State): 2:05.55
6.) Madisyn Cox (Texas): 2:05.77
7.) Ashley McGregor (Texas A&M): 2:06.99
8.) Andrea Cottrell (Louisville): 2:08.15


200 BUTTERFLY

NCAA Record: 1:49.92 (Elaine Breeden - Stanford, 2009)
Meet Record: 1:50.61 (Kelsi Worrell - Louisville, 2016)
American Record: 1:49.92 (Elaine Breeden - Stanford, 2009)
US Open Record: 1:49.92 (Elaine Breeden - Stanford, 2009)

​ELLA EASTIN!​ The Stanford Cardinal gets redemption from her second-place finish last year and takes the NCAA title with a time of 1:51.35. This was anybody's race at the 150, as ​Katie McLaughlin​ of Cal touched in 1:22.38 followed by ​Remedy Rule ​of Texas in 1:22.58 and Eastin in 1:22.65. But Eastin blew past them both over the last 50 yards, splitting 28.70 to McLaughlin's 29.99 and Rule's 30.34. However, it was determined that Rule was disqualified for going past 15m underwater. Thus, ​Jen Marrkand​ of Virginia gets the bronze with a time of 1:53.15 -- only four-hundredths of a second ahead of her teammate ​Kaitlyn Jones​ in 1:53.19

1.) Ella Eastin (Stanford): 1:51.35
2.) Katie McLaughlin (California): 1:52.37
3.) Jen Marrkand (Virginia): 1:53.15
4.) Kaitlyn Jones (Virginia): 1:53.19
5.) Maddie Wright (USC): 1:53.39
6.) Lauren Case (Texas): 1:54.05
7.) Sarah Gibson (Texas A&M): 1:54.68
**Remedy Rule (Texas) Disqualified**


​400 FREESTYLE RELAY

NCAA Record: 3:08.51 (Stanford, 2017) 3:07.61 (Stanford, 2017)
Meet Record: 3:08.54 (Stanford, 2015) 3:07.61 (Stanford, 2017)
American Record: 3:08.51 (Stanford, 2017) 3:07.61 (Stanford, 2017)
US Open Record: 3:08.51 (Stanford, 2017) 3:07.61 (Stanford, 2017)

​The icing on the cake for an unbelievable weekend for Stanford -- winning the 400 freestyle relay, the final event of the meet, in NCAA, meet, American, and U.S. Open record-breaking fashion to solidify a team championship for the Cardinal. Their time of 3:07.61 becomes the first ever under 3:08 and almost a full second faster than their own previous record. Led by a dominant leadoff of 46.02 from ​Simone Manuel​ and followed up with splits from Katie Ledecky (47.59), ​Janet Hu ​(47.63), and ​Lia Neal​ (46.37), they beat second-place Georgia, which finished in 3:08.97, by over 1.3 seconds. The Bulldogs had strong bookends from their senior leaders ​Olivia Smoliga ​(46.70) and ​Chantal Van Landeghem​ (46.73) to take the silver. Following very closely, only a tenth of a second behind, was California in 3:09.08. The Golden Bears came home very strong on the back half with impressive splits from ​Abbey Weitzeil​ (46.93) and ​Farida Osman​ (46.88) to overtake Louisville, USC, and NC State for the bronze.

1.) Stanford: 3:07.61 (NCAA, American, US Open Record)
2.) Georgia: 3:08.97
3.) California: 3:09.08
4.) Southern Cal: 3:10.07
5.) NC State: 3:10.31
6.) Louisville: 3:11.97
7.) Wisconsin: 3:12.94
8.) Texas A&M: 3:13.32


FINAL TEAM SCORES

1.) Stanford - 526.5
2.) California - 366
3.) Texas A&M - 292.5
4.) Georgia - 252.5
5.) Texas - 252
6.) Louisville - 194.5
7.) NC State - 194
8.) Indiana - 185
9.) Southern Cal - 176
10.) Minnesota - 168
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