Seward junior Lydia Jacoby swims in August 2019 at the Speedo Junior National Championships in Stanford, California. (Photo by Jack Spitser)

Seward junior Lydia Jacoby swims in August 2019 at the Speedo Junior National Championships in Stanford, California. (Photo by Jack Spitser)

Seward’s Jacoby nabs Speedo Sectional titles

Seward junior Lydia Jacoby, 17, won the 100- and 200-yard breaststrokes over the weekend at the Spring Speedo Sectional in Phoenix.

“I was really excited,” Jacoby said. “At my last sectionals two years ago, I got second in the 100 and didn’t place at all in the 200. It was cool to come back and not only get my first individual sectionals title, but my second one as well.”

Last year at this time, Jacoby was in the state of Washington for the sectionals meet. She had warmed up the day before when the meet was canceled due to the wave of closures sweeping the country due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Jacoby said that sectional meet in Washington once again couldn’t be held this year, so that region was folded into the Spring Speedo Sectional in Phoenix. There is no age limit at the short-course meet.

Saturday, Jacoby won the 200 breaststroke at 2:08.61, with Nora Deleske of Arizona finishing second at 2:11.26. Jacoby came into the meet with a 2:12.82 seed time, which she had just dropped from about 2:14 two or three weeks ago.

“That’s a big drop in that time period,” she said.

Once Jacoby was able to start training again in May after a pause due to the pandemic closing down pools, she said she started doing a lot more endurance training. That training has paid off in the second half of the 200.

Monday, Jacoby won the 100 breaststroke in 59.35 seconds. In going under a minute for the fourth time in the race, she lowered her personal best of 59.46. The runner-up time in Monday’s race was 1:01.59.

“I was really happy with it,” she said. “Getting into 59 low swims is a big deal. There aren’t that many women that go under a minute in that race.”

Jacoby will next compete at the TYR Pro Swim Series in Mission Viejo, California, from April 8 to 11. She said the competition at the meet is limited to those with Olympic Trials qualifying times.

Jacoby is qualified in the 100- and 200-meter breaststroke at the Olympic Trials, which will be in Omaha, Nebraska, in June. She also has committed to the powerhouse swimming program at the University of Texas.

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