Florida State rising senior swimmer Natalie Pierce powered her way to the podium in the 50m breast on Thursday night at the 2017 Phillips 66 US National Swimming Championships at the IUPUI Natatorium.
“I am very excited and proud to see Natalie translate her fabulous short course season into long course success,” FSU head coach Neal Studd said. “She had some great performances and some personal bests and of course it was all highlighted by her podium finish.”
Known for her speed after holding the seconded fastest short course split in the NCAA, Pierce posted a time of 31.22 in prelims, finishing seventh after being seeded 24th. Working from lane one at finals, Pierce improved her time and place, touching at 30.89 for fourth.
The Bloomfield Hills native was the first Seminole to place in the top eight at US Nationals since Ian Rowe (2009) and Kyle Young (2007) were eighth and fifth respectively in the 1500m free.
Pierce followed that performance with a 17th place finish in the 100 breast with a personal best time of 1:09.53. She also opened the meet swimming the 200 breast, touching in 46th with a time of 2:35.43.
“I believe she a lot more to accomplish,” Studd said. “And that is truly exciting. She is an incredible person and athlete. She always works hard and she’s very smart. It’s going to be a special senior year for her and then she will be looking very seriously at a shot for the Tokyo Olympics.”
Senior Chad Mylin will swim the 50m free on Saturday, with prelims starting at 9 a.m.
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On the television side, 2017 Phillips 66 Nationals will feature 12 hours of broadcast coverage from NBC Sports Group, including four hours of nationally televised coverage on NBC on July 1-2. A complete schedule is as follows:
|Date||Network||Time (ET)||Live or Delay||Webcast*|
|Tuesday, June 27||NBCSN||7-8 p.m.||Same Day Delay||USASwimming.org|
|Wednesday, June 28||NBCSN||7-8 p.m.||Same Day Delay||USASwimming.org|
|Thursday, June 29||Universal HD||6-8 p.m.||Live||NBC Sports App|
|Friday, June 30||Universal HD||6-8 p.m.||Live||NBC Sports App|
|Saturday, July 1||NBC||1-3 p.m.||Taped||USASwimming.org|
|Saturday, July 1||Universal HD||6-8 p.m.||Live||NBC Sports App|
|Sunday, July 2||NBC||1-3 p.m.||Taped||USASwimming.org|
Courtesy of Christa Salerno