In preparation for the upcoming season, the Ohio State men’s and women’s swimming programs journeyed cross-country to the U.S. Open Swimming Championships in Irving, Calif. Taking place July 30 – Aug. 3, the meet offered a strong field of international and national competition to round out the Buckeyes’ summer campaign.

“It’s exciting to go out and have some great swims leading into fall training,” said Bill Wadley, men’s swimming head coach. “I was happy to see Michael DiSalle and Tim Phillips break 50-seconds in the 100 freestyle, and DJ MacDonald preform strongly in both breaststroke events. Our relays were also outstanding this meet. Between the 400 medley relay setting a new varsity record and the 400 free relay and 800 free relay each finishing strong, it was a great overall showing for Buckeye swimming.”

There didn’t appear to be any jet lag for the Buckeyes, who came out with a fast, record-breaking start on the first day of competition.

On the men’s side, rising senior Tim Phillips dropped an Ohio State record time of 49.77 in prelims of the 100 freestyle. Phillips previously held the top Buckeye time in the event with a mark of 50.17, which he also bested in finals where he placed seventh in 49.97.

Michael DiSalle, a rising junior from Toledo, Ohio, also had a strong performance in the 100 freestyle. With a preliminary time of 50.26, DiSalle recorded a new personal best and advanced to the finals of the event. In finals, he placed 18th with an even faster time of 49.98, which marked his first time under the 50-second mark. Rising sophomore Josh Fleagle posted a personal-best time as well with a 41st-place finish in 50.86.

Ohio State men’s swimming had two competitors in the 200 butterfly – rising senior Ryan Bubb and rising sophomore Peter Lyon. Bubb dropped a time of 2:04.10 for 53rd, while Lyon earned a time of 2:05.85 for 67th.

In distance swimming, rising senior Alex Miller touched 15th in the 1500 freestyle in 15:36.13, a personal best time.

The Ohio State women finished day one in impressive fashion, taking fifth in the 4×100 freestyle relay. The contingent of Alex Norris, Michelle Williams, Phoebe Cater and Erin Dunseith dropped a time of 3:47.19 to outlast sixth-place finisher Australian States.

Williams preformend strong in the 100 freestyle, advancing to finals with a preliminary time of 56.22. A native of Toranto, Ontario, she ultimately placed 15th with a time of 56.66. Cater earned 47th in the event, touching in 57.51.

In the 800 freestyle, two Buckeye women placed in the Top 25. Norris placed 14th with a time of 8:45.64, while Kelly Ann Baird took 25th in 8:51.33.

On the second day of action, Norris led the way for the Ohio State women by advancing to the finals of the 400 freestyle. With a mark of 4:14.12, she dropped nearly a second off her preliminary time to finish 12th in the event. Norris’ teammates Baird and Dunseith placed 32nd (4:19.45) and 56th (4:25.18), respectively.

In the 200 backstroke, Mary Sarah Cruzan took 35th with a time of 2:18.83.

Also on day two, the Ohio State men competed in the 400 freestyle, 200 breaststroke, 200 backstroke and 4×100 freestyle relay. Starting off with the 400 freestyle, Williams earned 45th in 4:01.64, while Miller placed 55th in 4:02.63.

Rising sophomore DJ MacDonald was the Scarlet and Gray’s lone competitor in the 200 breaststroke. A native of Toledo, Ohio, he touched 17th in 2:14.78.

Four Buckeyes competed in the 200 backstroke, with rising junior Steven Zimmerman leading the way with a 13th-place showing (2:00.62). Williams and Chris DePietro followed in 43rd (2:04.97) and 62nd (2:06.53), while Lyon took 81st in 2:09.92.

Rounding out the day was the 4×100 freestyle relay contingent of Fleagle, Miller, DiSalle and Bubb. The group swam to an eighth-place finish with a time of 3:24.32.

Setting another strong statement for Buckeye swimming, Phillips qualified first after posting a 52.21 in preliminaries of the 100 butterfly on day three of the championships. Coming off an Ohio State record-breaking 100 freestyle swim on Tuesday, the rising senior placed second in the 100 butterfly finals with a time of 51.78.

Phillips’ classmates, Garrett Trebilcock and Bubb also competed in the event. Trebilcock finished with a mark of 54.86 for 37th, while Bubb placed 50th in 55.46.

In the 4×200 freestyle relay, the Buckeye quintet of DiSalle, Miller, Williams and Zimmerman earned eighth in 7:32.52, which was the top finish of all Big Ten clubs at the meet.

Not to be outdone by the men, Ohio State women’s swimming took seventh in the 4×200 freestyle relay. The contingent of Dunseith, Norris, Baird and Kristyn Fulcher swam to a time of 8:16.31.

Prior to the relay, Fulcher competed in the 400 individual medley. She placed 40th with a time of 4:59.63.

In her second event of the meet, Cater touched 53rd in the 100 butterfly in 1:01.98.

Yet another Ohio State varsity record fell when Zimmerman, MacDonald, Trebilcock and DiSalle put down a time of 3:41.27 in the men’s 4×100 medley relay. Placing fourth in the event, the crew topped the former Buckeye long-course record by two seconds.

MacDonald and Zimmerman qualified for finals in the 100 breaststroke and 100 backstroke, respectively. With a time of 1:02.36, MacDonald took ninth, while Zimmerman placed 13th in 55.68.

In preliminary competition, DiSalle earned a time of 1:51.06 for 21st in the 200 freestyle. Teammates Miller and Williams also competed in the event, swimming to 43rd (1:52.56) and 91st (1:57.21) finishes, respectively.

Rising senior Michael Gallagher placed 60th in prelims of the 100 backstoke in 58.36, and Trebilcock took 78th 59.54.

For the Buckeye women, Norris once again qualified for finals this time in the 200 freestyle. A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, Norris touched 14th in 2:02.14. Rachael Dzierzak, a rising sophomore from Perrysburg, Ohio, made her U.S. Open debut with a time of 1:14.50 for 59th in the 100 breaststroke.

The squad rounded out the day with a 10th-place showing in the 4×100 medley relay. Fulcher, Dzierzak, Cater and Michelle Williams recorded a time of 4:16.39 in the event.

On the final night of the U.S. Open, two Buckeyes – Michelle Williams and DiSalle – qualified for finals.

Representing the Ohio State women, Williams swam to a 13th-place finish in the 50 freestyle. In finals, she dropped her time to under the 26-second mark with a time of 25.98.

DiSalle on the other hand took 24th in the 50 freestyle in 23.39, while Fleagle placed 70th in preliminaries (23.84).

The Buckeye men also took on the 200 individual medley. In the event, Depietro recorded a time of 2:06.53 for 39th. In 75th-place was Zimmerman, who touched in 2:09.09.

In distance swimming, Baird finished 38th in the 1500 freestyle (17:19.78).

The Ohio State men ended the meet in ninth-place with 93 points earned. The ranking was third among Big Ten clubs at the meet and fifth among NCAA member competition.

In 11th-place, the Ohio State women tallied 83 total points. As the fourth-ranked Big Ten squad, Ohio State was the sixth highest placing NCAA member squad. 

U.S. Open Swimming Championships
William Woollett Jr. Aquatics Center
Irvine, Calif.
July 30 – Aug. 3, 2013

Top Finishers:
Ohio State Women:
100 freestyle – 15. Williams (56.66); 800 freestyle – 14. Norris (8:45.64); 4×100 freestyle relay – 5. Norris, Williams, , Dunseith (3:47.19); 400 freestyle – 12. Norris (4:14.12); 200 backstroke – 35. Cruzan (2:18.83); 400 IM – 40. Fulcher (4:59.63); 100 butterfly – 53. Cater (1:01.98); 4×200 freestyle relay – 7. Dinseith, Norris, Baird, Fulcher (8:16.31); 200 freestyle – 14. Norris (2:02.14); 100 breaststroke – 59. Dzierzak (1:14.50); 4×100 medley relay – 10. Fulcher, Dzierzak, Cater, Williams (4:16.39); 50 freestyle – 13. Williams (25.98); 1500 freestyle – 38. Baird (17:19.78).

Ohio State Men:
100 freestyle – 7. Phillips (49.97); 200 butterfly – 53. Bubb (2:04.10); 1500 freestyle – 15. Miller (15.36.13); 400 freestyle – 45. Williams (4:01.64); 200 breaststroke – 17. MacDonald (2:14.78); 200 backstroke – 13. Zimmerman (2:00.62); 4×100 freestyle relay – 8. Fleagle, Miller, DiSalle (Michael), Bubb (3:24.32); 100 butterfly – 2. Phillips (51.78); 4×200 freestyle relay – 8. DiSalle, Miller, Williams, Zimmerman (7:32.52); 100 breaststroke – 9. MacDonald (1:02.36); 100 backstroke – 13. Zimmerman (55.68); 200 freestyle – 21. DiSalle (1:51.06); 4×100 medley relay – 4. Zimmerman, MacDonald, Trebilcock, DiSalle (3:41.27); 200 individual medley – 39. Depietro (2:06.53); 50 freestyle – 24. DiSalle (23.19).