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LIST: Texas athletes set to make splash at Tokyo Olympics

LIST: Texas athletes set to make splash at Tokyo Olympics

June 17, 2021
Click here to view original web page at www.kxan.com

U.S. Olympic Team qualifiers in Men’s 10-meter Platform: Brandon Loschiavo (left) and Jordan Windle (right) Photo courtesy: Marc Lebryk/USA Diving AUSTIN (KXAN) — The U.S. Swimming Olympic Team will be fully formed on June 20 as the country’s best swimmers are currently competing for a prestigious Olympic spot at […]

Click here to view original web page at www.kxan.com


Jordan Windle with Brandon Loschiavo 10-meter awards
U.S. Olympic Team qualifiers in Men’s 10-meter Platform: Brandon Loschiavo (left) and Jordan Windle (right) Photo courtesy: Marc Lebryk/USA Diving

AUSTIN (KXAN) — The U.S. Swimming Olympic Team will be fully formed on June 20 as the country’s best swimmers are currently competing for a prestigious Olympic spot at the Team Trials in Omaha, Nebraska this week.

The swimming trials showcase the best of the best during a grueling week of competition. In most events, only the top two finishers will make the Olympic team after the field is whittled down with a prelim, semifinal and final round.

According to Team USA, a maximum of 56 swimmers (28 of each gender) can qualify to compete for the U.S. in swimming at the Olympic Games Tokyo. However, several swimmers will qualify in more than one event, meaning more spots will be available for the freestyle relay. Up to four additional swimmers can qualify in both the 100- and 200-meter freestyles.

Michael Phelps is merely an observer this time around, but several, previous gold medal winners are already carrying the banner for Team USA. Katie Ledecky and Lilly King have qualified for the women’s side. Kieran Smith and Ryan Murphy are in on the men’s side.

The Lone Star State is well-represented at the swimming trials with Texas natives and current/former Texas Longhorns competing this week. Additionally, three Texas Longhorns are already planning their trips to Tokyo on the U.S. Olympic Diving Team.

Below we’ll break down who’s in and who’s close to realizing their dream of reaching the Olympics.

Texas swimmers qualified for the Tokyo Olympics

Townley Haas with gold medal
Swimmer Townley Haas with his 2016 Olympic gold medal.

Townley Haas: The former Texas Longhorn is on his way to Tokyo, finishing second in the 200-meter freestyle final. Haas will compete for Team USA in the 200 free. Haas, who earned a gold medal on Team USA’s 4 x 200-meter freestyle relay in the Rio Olympics in 2016, will make his second appearance in the Olympic Games.

Erica Sullivan: The incoming Texas Longhorns freshman finished second in the 1,500-meter freestyle, punching her ticket to Tokyo. The Las Vegas native finished behind Katie Ledecky in Wednesday night’s final.

Drew Kibler: The Texas Longhorns junior finished right behind Haas in the 200 free, placing third in the final. Kibler will join Haas on the 4 x 200-meter freestyle relay.

Texas swimmers still in the hunt

Will Licon: The former Texas Longhorn is close to reaching the Olympic team, advancing to the 200-meter breaststroke final. On Wednesday, Licon finished with the fourth-fastest time in the semifinals. The 200-meter breaststroke finals at Thursday night.

Jake Foster: The Texas Longhorn sophomore advanced to the 200-meter breaststroke with the seventh-fastest time in the semifinals. Foster will compete for an Olympic spot Thursday night.

Kelly Pash: The Texas Longhorns sophomore moved on to the 200-meter butterfly final with the fifth-fastest time in the semifinals.

Dakota Luther: Luther is on to the 200-meter butterfly final with the sixth-fastest time in the semifinals. The Austin native currently swims for the University of Georgia.

Texas divers qualified for the Tokyo Olympics

US Olympic Diving Trials wrapped up last weekend at IUPUI Natatorium in Indianapolis, Indiana. Diving events will be held from July 25 to August 7 in Tokyo. Three Texas Longhorns will join the team.

Krysta Palmer (left) and Alison Gibson (right). Photo courtesy: Marc Lebryk/USA Diving.

Alison Gibson: The Austin native and former Texas Longhorn qualified for the Women’s Synchronized 3-meter Springboard Team with her diving partner Krysta Palmer. Gibson became the Longhorns’ first NCAA diving champion in 10 years when she won the 1-meter springboard during her freshman year.

Hailey Hernandez: The youngest female diver going to Tokyo for Team USA at age 18, Hernandez is a four-time Texas state champion from Southlake. She placed second at the Trials, finishing with 926.55 points with consistent dives. Hernandez is a 10-time junior national champion. Hernandez will attend the University of Texas as a freshman in 2021.

Jordan Windle: The Texas Longhorns senior will continue his prodigious diving career in Tokyo. Windle will represent Team USA in the Men’s 10-meter Platform. At the age of 22, this was his third Olympic Trials, competing in 2012 on synchronized platform and 2016 on platform. Windle was born in Cambodia and was adopted by his father at 18 months old. At UT, Windle won the NCAA 1-meter national championship, finished second on 3-meter and fourth on platform. at the 2021 NCAA Championships, second on 3-meter and fourth on platform.

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