Swimming and Diving Championships: Georgia keeps lead after Day 3
ATLANTA, Ga. -- Brittany MacLean’s individual title in the 200 freestyle highlighted Georgia’s efforts during the NCAA Championships on Friday at the McAuley Aquatic Center on the Georgia Tech campus.
Heading into the final day of competition, Georgia maintained its lead with 285 points. California remains in second with 267.5 points, trailed by Stanford (265), Texas A&M (201.5) and Virginia (196).
“We are excited to be in this situation," Georgia head coach Jack Bauerle said. “There are a lot of good teams here but we aren’t going to leave anything on the table tomorrow. Our women are going to swim with a lot of intensity.”
MacLean won her first individual title of the meet, claiming the 200 free in 1:42.42. The time was also a pool record, eclipsing teammate Hali Flickinger’s record of 1:42.80 set during Wednesday’s 800 freestyle relay. Flickinger followed closely behind, finishing fourth in 1:43.32.
“I just wanted to win this for my team,” MacLean said. “They are all I care about right now. If you would have told me a year ago that I would have won the 200 freestyle at NCAAs, I probably would have laughed.”
Stanford's Ella Eastin earned her second national title in as many nights. The Irvine, Calif., native led from the start and earned a sweep of the individual medley events with a career-best 3:58.40 in the 400 IM. Eastin is the fifth Cardinal to win the event for a combined nine national titles. That is the sixth-fastest 400 IM of all-time.
Stanford bookended the night with national championships as the 200-yard medley relay capped the session with another victory. Ally Howe, Sarah Haase, Janet Hu and Lia Neal earned the sweep in the medley relays with a winning time of 1:34.81. Stanford has now won the event 13 times, and two of the last three years. One night earlier, the foursome won the 400 medley relay. They own the American record in both events.
Cal's Rachel Bootsma won her third NCAA title in the 100 back with a time of 50.28. Bootsma also won the NCAA championship in the 100 back in 2013 and 2015. She wasn’t feeling well Thursday night but managed to still put together a championship-level race on Friday.
“I was really nervous,” Bootsma said. “I haven’t been feeling that great. Just to get my hands to the wall was relief. I don’t think it’s hit me yet, but I’m sure it will. I’m just really honored to win again.”