Silver and bronze were the colors collected by Team USA on the fifth day of the 13th FINA World Swimming Championships for short-course distances at the WFCU Centre in Windsor, Ontario.
Two relay silver medals were the bookends to the evening, bracketing a pair of silver-bronze performances as the United States collected five silvers and three bronzes, bringing its medal total to 26.
The U.S. quartet of Jacob Pebley, Cody Miller, Tom Shields and Michael Chadwick rallied to earn the silver medal in the men’s 4x50-meter medley. In fifth after the first leg, Miller, a gold medalist in the 4x100-meter medley in Rio, sparked the U.S. comeback by improving the position to third before handing off to Shields. Also a relay gold medalist in Rio, Shields gained another spot, but neither he nor Michael Chadwick could reel in a Russian team that touched first in 1:31.52. The Americans were 0.45 seconds back at 1:31.97. Belarus, which led at the halfway mark, clocked in at 1:32.49 to settle for bronze.
In a repeat of the women’s 400-meter individual medley result earlier in the week, Ella Eastin and Madisyn Cox gave Team USA silver and bronze in the 200-meter IM, a race won by Hungarian Olympic champion Katinka Hosszu in 2:02.90. Eastin, a Stanford University sophomore, surged back from sixth at the 50-meter mark to finish in 2:05.02. Cox, silver medalist in the 200 IM at the 2015 World University Games, held off a mid-race challenge from Australia’s Emily Seebohm to take the bronze in 2:05.93.
Shields earned his third individual silver of the meet in the men’s 50-meter butterfly, where he touched in 22.40 seconds, 0.42 seconds behind South Africa’s Chad le Clos. It was the third time this week that the two-time Olympic medalist had been faster than Shields in a butterfly event.
Ali DeLoof gained a bronze in the women’s 50-meter backstroke. After setting the American record of 26.12 seconds in qualifying, she swam a 26.14 in the final to touch 0.01 seconds ahead of Russia’s Mariia Kameneva. Brazil’s Etiene Medeiros took the gold in 25.82, while Hosszu claimed silver in 25.99 seconds.
Olympians Lilly King and Molly Hannis gave the U.S. its second silver-bronze performance of the night in the women’s 100-meter breaststroke. The Olympic-record holder in the event, King’s 1:03.35 was 0.32 behind Jamaica’s Alia Atkinson. Hannis, a former NCAA champion for the University of Tennessee, posted a 1:03.89 on her way to the bronze medal.
Cox returned to the pool to close out the evening with Leah Smith, Mallory Comerford and Sarah Gibson, claiming silver in the women’s 4x200-meter free. The Americans held second on all four legs, trying to track down a Canadian team that took the lead in the second leg and refused to relinquish it, finishing in 7:33.89, 4.76 seconds ahead of Team USA’s 7:38.65.
Championship competition concludes Sunday in Windsor.