Vendt, Sandeno Lead Troy To U.S. Swimming's Summer Nationals

Aug. 9, 2002

A USC contingent led by current Trojans Erik Vendt and Kaitlin Sandeno and alumni Lenny Krayzelburg and Lindsay Benko will compete at the 2002 Summer National Championships in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. From Aug. 12-17.

The meet will be televised on a taped-delayed basis on ESPN 2 on Aug. 28-29 from noon to 1 p.m. both days.

USA Swimming will be selecting its team for the 2002 Pan Pacific Championshipsheld Aug. 25-30 in Yokohama, Japan, from the top two or three finishers in each event. Swims will also be considered for selection to the 2003 World Championships team, the Duel in the Pool team (USA vs. Australia in a one-day event), the Pan American Games team and the World University Games team.

Vendt, coming off of a pair of titles at the 2002 NCAA Championships, is entered in seven events, but the focus will be on the 400m IM and the 1500m freestyle. He is seeded first in both events. He figures to get a battle from prep phenom Michael Phelps and former Stanford swimmer Tom Wilkens in the medley race while he will duke it out with rival Chris Thompson (a Michigan alum) in the mile. Vendt is also entered in the 200m, 400m and 800m freestyles, the 200m fly and the 200m breast (seeded sixth).

Sandeno, rounding into shape after recovering from a severe back strain that limited her training for much of the past season, is the top seed in the 200m fly and third in the 400m IM. Emily Mason and Dana Kirk will be among the top challengers in the fly while only Kristen Caverly and Maggie Bowen have swum faster times this year in the 400m IM. Sandeno is also seeded fourth in the 400m free and is entered in the 100m fly and the 200m back.

Krayzelburg, who returned to elite level competition at the Janet Evans Invitational at USC in July in rousing fashion, is primed for big races in both the 100m and 200m back. He is seeded fourth in the 100 and second in the 200. His main competition is Aaron Peirsol, who has replaced Krayzelburg as the world's top backstroker while the former Trojan recovered from shoulder surgery.

Benko has been among the world's top middle distance freestylers for some time now and will look to maintain that stature next week. The world record holder in the short course 200m free, she is seeded first in the long-course event in Florida and is second in the 400m free. She will also swim the 100m free.

Other Trojans who could do some serious damage at the meet include Jeff Lee, Trent Staley, John Abercrombie and Jana Krohn.

Lee has been rising in the 200m free and 200m fly the past two years and will also swim the 100s in both events. Staley is seeded fifth in the 200m back and 12th in the 100m back and will also race in the 200m free.

Abercrombie reached the finals of the 100m fly at both the Spring and Summer National Championships last year and is seeded 10th in this meet. He'll also compete in the 200m fly and the 200m IM. Krohn was a two-time fly finalist at the 2001 Spring Nationals and is entered in both races this year.

Among the other Trojans scheduled to race are David Ringe (100m and 200m fly), Erik Tolmachoff (200m breast, 400m IM), Marisa Kozak (100m and 200m back and 100m fly), Alice Orr (100m and 200m back) and Melissa Deary (400m, 800m and 1500m free).

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