Bastian set for NCAA Swimming Championships

For the third consecutive year, one of the top breaststrokers in the country, Izaak Bastian, has qualified for the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I Swimming and Diving Championships, the men’s version of which get underway today and will run through Saturday at the Greensboro Aquatic Center in Greensboro, North Carolina.

Bastian, 20, has qualified individually in both the 100- and 200-yard breaststroke events, and is also expected top be part of at least three relay teams for the Florida State University (FSU) Seminoles. The FSU junior is the school record holder in both the 100 and 200 breast, swimming to times of 51.84 and 1:53.81 at the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Championships in Greensboro four weeks ago.

Bastian goes into the 100 breast as the 21st fastest qualifier among 41 swimmers, and into the 200 breast as the 26th fastest qualifier among 47 swimmers.

The Bahamas’ top collegiate swimmer is already a three-time All-American (100 breast, 400 medley relay – 2020, and 200 medley relay – 2019) and a four-time ACC medalist (silver – 200 medley relay, 400 medley relay; bronze – 00 breast – 2020; and bronze 200 medley relay – 2019).

Bastian and the Seminoles’ men’s 200 medley relay team go into the championships with the 14th fastest time out of 23 teams – 1:23.91. Their men’s 400 medley relay team go into the championships with the 18th fastest time out of 24 teams – 3:06.39; and the 200 free relay team go into the four-day meet with the 15th fastest time out of 22 teams – 1:16.82.

Bastian swims in the 200 free relay and the 400 medley relay on Thursday, the 100 breast and the 200 medley relay on Friday, and the 200 breast on Saturday.

As for the women’s championship, Bahamian Lilly Higgs and the North Carolina Tar Heels finished 12th overall with 144 points. Virginia won the four-day meet with 491 points.

Higgs and her 200 medley relay team finished eighth overall in 1:36.25, earning All-America honors. They came into the meet with a seed time of 1:36.23. Higgs, a junior, swam the breaststroke leg for the team and turned in a split of 27.22 seconds – 13th fastest on that stroke. North Carolina State University won the gold in 1:33.18, Virginia was second in 1:34.13, and Ohio State rounded out the top three in 1:34.96.

In the 400 medley relay, Higgs and her teammates settled for 14th overall in 3:32.49 after coming in with a seed time of 3:33.18. Once again, Higgs swam the breaststroke leg for the team, turning in a split of 59.37 – 13th fastest in the field.

Individually, in the 100 breast, Higgs was 25th overall among 47 swimmers in 59.96 seconds after coming in with a seed time of 59.77. She split 28.34 in the first 50 and 31.62 in the second 50. In the 200 breast, Higgs was 32nd overall among 54 swimmers in 2:10.32 after coming in with a seed time of 2:10.93. She turned in splits of 29.66, 32.77, 33.54 and came home in 34.35 seconds.

The 2020 editions were canceled.