June 25, 2012
OMAHA, Neb. - A former winner of UC Davis' Colby E. "Babe" Slater Award as the university's male athlete of the year, Aggie alumnus Scott Weltz posted the fourth-fastest time in Monday's preliminary heats then the No. 2 time of that evening's semifinal round to advance to the 100-meter breaststroke final at the U.S. Olympic Swimming Team Trials at the CenturyLink Center.
Weltz, who serves as a volunteer assistant with the UC Davis women's swimming & diving team, went one minute, 0.48 seconds on Monday morning to finish second to Brendan Hansen in the 15th heat. He then improved to 1:00.20 in the semifinals, again trailing only Hansen, the former world record-holder in the event.
Swimming in the fifth lane, Weltz trailed Eric Shanteau in Lane 3 at the midway point, recording a 28.45 split to the former Olympian's 28.41. However, at 31.75 seconds, Weltz' second 50 meters were faster than any swimmer in either heat (including Hansen). He touched seven-hundredths of a second ahead of Shanteau.
The final heat of the 100 breast takes place on Tuesday. The evening session begins at 6:45 local time, or 4:45 PDT. The 100 breast final is the fourth event of the evening slate.
Also competing in Tuesday's Trials action is UC Davis junior Liliana Alvarez, who will race in the 12th heat of the 100 breast. The event will begin at 11:15 a.m. CDT, 9:15 Pacific.
Both Weltz and Alvarez bear a dual affilation of Marin Pirates and UC Davis in the Trials. Weltz entered the meet with the 13th-fastest seed time in the 100 breast (1:01.65). Arguably, his best event is the 200 breast, in which he holds the No. 6 entering time of 2:12.37. That event runs on Thursday and Friday, while Weltz' action in the 200 individual medley -- highlighted by the rivalry of Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte -- takes place on Friday and Saturday.
Alvarez represented UC Davis in the 100-yard breaststroke at the NCAA Championships to cap her sophomore year last March. Weltz won All-America honorable mention in 2009 and twice captured Big West Conference Athlete of the Year distinction.