Three Gold Medals for Team USA Swimming to Open In Gwangju
GWANGJU, South Korea – July 4, 2015 – Led by a victory from Sarah Henry (Garner, N.C.) in the 400-meter individual medley, Team USA swept all three gold medals up for grabs on the opening night of World University Games action at the Nambu University International Aquatics Center.
The Americans also added victories in the men’s and women’s 400m freestyle relays.
Henry, who won the 400m IM NCAA title for Texas A&M in March, touched in a lifetime-best 4 minutes, 38.88 seconds to win gold. Georgia’s Hali Flickinger (Spring Grove, Pa.) earned bronze in 4:40.54 to put two Americans on the podium. Barbora Zavadova of the Czech Republic took silver in 4:40.03.
“It means everything; it doesn’t get any better than that,” said Henry on representing the United States with a gold medal on the Fourth of July. “I hope when everyone wakes up in the morning, they’re going to check (the results) and be happy. It’ll be a great gift for them.”
In relay action, the U.S. women led from the start in the 400m free relay to win in a Universiade-record 3:38.12. Abbey Weitzel (Saugus, Calif.) put Team USA in front from the start, and Shannon Vreeland (Overland Park, Kansas), Madeline Locus (Sugar Land, Texas) and Lia Neal (Brooklyn, N.Y.) never relinquished the lead en route to gold. Japan took silver in 3:41.15, with Russia earning bronze in 3:41.34.
On the men’s side, the U.S. squad of Matt Ellis (Austin, Texas), Michael Wynalda (Wyoming, Mich.), Jack Conger (Rockville, Md.) and Seth Stubblefield (Plano, Texas) won gold in 3:15.85 ahead of Japan (3:17.98) and Russia (3:18.18).
A number of Team USA swimmers advanced to finals in their respective events with solid semifinal swims Saturday. Complete meet details, including results, can be found here.
Pool action continues through July 10 with prelim sessions at 8:30 a.m. locally (7:30 p.m. EDT the previous day), with finals set for 7 p.m. locally (6 a.m. EDT).
In the United States, ESPN3, ESPNU and the Longhorn Network will air coverage from July 3-9. A one-hour swimming and diving recap show will air on ESPNU on July 16. A complete webcast and broadcast schedule can be found here.
The World University Games feature 21 different sports and thousands of student-athletes from more than 170 countries. The event was created to celebrate university students and their commitment to education and sport.
Note: Team USA’s media guide for the 2015 World University Games is available at usaswimming.org/media.
About USA Swimming
As the National Governing Body for the sport of swimming in the United States, USA Swimming is a 400,000-member service organization that promotes the culture of swimming by creating opportunities for swimmers and coaches of all backgrounds to participate and advance in the sport through clubs, events and education. Our membership is comprised of swimmers from the age group level to the Olympic Team, as well as coaches and volunteers. USA Swimming is responsible for selecting and training teams for international competition including the Olympic Games, and strives to serve the sport through its core objectives: Build the base, Promote the sport, Achieve competitive success. For more information, visit www.usaswimming.org.