Swimmers find success at Short Course World Championships

The Louisville Cardinal By Matt Bradshaw —For U of L students, winter break was an opportunity to kick back from the books and spend time relaxing. For Cardinal swimmers, it was a time to travel nearly 7,500 miles across the globe to compete with the best of the best.Both current and former student-athletes swam at the Short Course Wold Championships last month in Hangzhou, China. The Cards represented not only the United States but also their native countries of El Salvador, Venezuela and Russia.Sophomore Zach Harting and senior Mallory Comerford swam for the U.S. squad with alumna Kelsi Worrell Dahlia as team captain. Dahlia is well-known for her performance at the 2016 Rio Olympics, where she won a gold medal in the 4×100 medley relay.Senior Marcelo Acosta swam for El Salvador while alumni Carlos Claverie and Gregory Tarasevich swam for Venezuela and Russia, respectively.All told, Team USA topped the Championships with 36 total medals, making for 22 more than any other country. Captain Dahlia finished with a team-best nine medals.Day oneComerford, appearing in her second straight World Championships, set an American record in the 200 free. Already back-to-back NCAA Champion in the same race, she beat the world record by nearly a full second and collected a silver medal.Comerford later combined with Dahlia and two other Americans to win the team’s first gold medal of the Championships in the 4×100 free relay.Harting finished fifth in the 200 fly final, where the top two swimmers broke the previous world record, and notched a personal best time.Acosta posted 13th overall in the 400 free for El Salvador.Claverie posted 32nd overall in the 100 breast for Venezuela.Day twoComerford and Dahlia opened the second day of competition in record fashion, taking gold in the 4×50 medley relay and breaking the previous world record by a second. Both Cardinals’ splits were the fastest among …

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