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Aug. 21, 2002

Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. – Several members of the South Carolina men’s and women’s swimming teams gained experience over the past week at the U.S. Summer National Championships. Highlighting the week for the Gamecocks was junior Chris McCrary, who placed fourth in the 50-meter freestyle on Thursday with a time of 22.58.

“This is big springboard into the collegiate season for our swimmers who competed,” said head swimming coach Don Gibb. “Chris McCrary’s performance was incredible and a lot of fun to watch, with three Olympic gold medallists finishing ahead of him. I think Chris is ready to move on to the next level.”

Along with his fourth place finish, McCrary also finished below the 2004 Olympic Trial qualifying time of 23.39. McCrary was one of two Carolina swimmers to compete at the NCAA Championships last season. McCrary earned a 17th place finish in the 100 free with a time of 51.12, also below the Olympic Trial qualifying time.

Also competing for the men’s squad was junior Ed Murphy and newcomers Brandon Buslepp and Josh Boyd. Murphy swam in the 400 freestyle relay and 400 medley relay with McCrary on their club team from Missouri. A junior transfer from Louisiana-Monroe, Busleep competed in the 100 and 200 breaststroke, placing 37th in the 200 with a time of 2:22.63.

On the women’s side, returnees Heather Skaggs, Jennifer VanAssen, and Amy Vinson competed in several events for the Gamecocks, along with USC newcomers Stephanie Margalis and Haley Skaggs. He. Skaggs, Ha. Skaggs and Margalis placed 30th in the 400 freestyle relay with a time of 3:58.03. VanAssen competed in the 50 and 200 freestyle events, placing 70th in the 200 free with a time of 2:07.06. He. Skaggs also compted in the 100 butterfly and 50 and 100 freestyle events. Margalis also competed in the 200 and 400 freestyle events.

Also in the news for Gamecock swimming, former All-American Wade King set the World Record in the 50-meter butterfly for the 35-39 age group at the Masters National Championships in Cleveland, Ohio. King broke the previous record set in 2000.