By Jim Rusnak//Director of Editorial Properties | Tuesday, July 9, 2019
The United States won eight medals – three gold, two silver and three bronze – Tuesday at the World University Games in Naples, Italy.
Leading the way for the Americans was American Gabby DeLoof, who won her fourth gold medal of the meet in the women’s 200m freestyle, turning in a time of 1:57.62.
The first half of the race was close, with DeLoof leading by a fraction of a second at each turn. It then became a three-swimmer race between DeLoof, teammate Paige Madden and Mariia Baklakova of Russia, with DeLoof pulling away in the final 50. Madden finished second in 1:58.31, followed by Baklakova in 1:59.00.
Also winning his fourth gold medal of the meet was Zach Apple, who anchored the Americans’ winning 800m free relay. Swimming with him were Dean Farris, Grant House and Trenton Julian.
The U.S. found itself trailing in third after the first two legs of the relay, but Julian dug the team out of the hole in the third leg, giving Apple the lead to finish off the field. Their final time was 7:09.77. Italy was second in 7:10.43, while Australia was third in 7:14.75
Austin Katz of the dominated the field in the men’s 200m backstroke, pulling away at the 100-meter mark then cruising to the finish in 1:55.65. Teammate Clark Beach was in the second-place spot at Katz’s feet for much of the race, but couldn’t hold off Grigory Tarasevich of Russia in the final 10-15 meters. Tarasevich out-touched Beach for silver by five-hundredths of a second, 1:57.91 to 1:57.96.
In other races, American Coleman Stewart led a tight pack in the men’s 100m butterfly through the first 50 meters, but Egor Kuimov of Russia and Shinnosuke Ishikawa simultaneously got their hands on the wall first, tying for gold in in 52.05. Stewart touched six-hundredths of a second behind for bronze in 52.11, followed by teammate Jack Saunderson in fourth in 52.25. Just 32-hundredths of a second separated the entire field in this final.
Elise Haan won silver for the U.S. in the women’s 50m backstroke, behind Silvia Scalia of Italy (27.92). Calypso McDonnel of Australia was third in 28.25, followed by American Katharine Berkoff in fourth in 28.57.
Ian Finnerty followed up his gold medal in the men’s 100m breaststroke earlier on day 2 the meet with a bronze in the 50m breaststroke Tuesday. His time was 27.25. Kirill Prigoda of Russia was first in 26.99, and Michael Houlie of South Africa was second in 27.19. Connor Hoppe of the U.S. was fourth in 27.30.
American Taylor Ault and Megan Byrnes swam in the final of the women’s 800m freestyle. Ault finished fourth in 8:39.21, while Byrnes was seventh in 8:45.06. Waka Kobori of Japan commanded the race from start to finish, taking gold in 8:34.30.
After six days of competition, the U.S. has won 32 medals overall – 14 gold, 10 silver and eight bronze.
Semifinals were conducted Tuesday in the women’s 50m breaststroke, the men’s 50m freestyle, women’s 200m butterfly and women’s 50m freestyle. The top eight swimmers in each event qualified for tomorrow night’s finals.
American swimmers competing in tonight’s semifinals were Jorie Caneta and Emily Weiss, who finished ninth and 14th in the women’s 50m breaststroke in 31.54 and 31.80; Zach Apple, who tied for sixth in the men’s 50m freestyle in 22.38; Dakota Luther and Olivia Carter, who finished first and second in the women’s 200m butterfly in 2:08.15 and 2:09.56; and Ky-lee Perry and Grace Ariola, who finished second and sixth in the women’s 50m freestyle in 25.11 and 25.38.