USA Swimming Announces 2021 SC Worlds Roster; Dressel Among Notable Absences

By James Sutherland on SwimSwam

USA Swimming announced a roster of 28 swimmers that will compete at the 2021 FINA Short Course World Championships on Tuesday, with the meet scheduled for December 16-21 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Full Roster

The roster features 15 swimmers that were on the 2020 U.S. Olympic team, including individual gold medalist Lydia Jacoby and relay gold medal winners Zach Apple, Michael Andrew and Hunter Armstrong. The team also includes seven swimmers aged 19 and under—all on the women’s side.

There is an even split of 14 women and 14 men on the roster. In 2018, there were 17 women and 18 men on the American roster.


Women’s Team


Katharine Berkoff
100 BK

Claire Curzan
50 FR; 50/100 FLY

Kate Douglass
200 IM

Emily Escobedo
100/200 BR

Katie Grimes
800 FR

Charlotte Hook
200 FLY

Torri Huske
100/200 FR; 50/100 FLY

Lydia Jacoby
50/100 BR

Paige Madden
200/400 FR

Melanie Margalis
100/200/400 IM; 200 BR

Isabelle Stadden
200 BK

Abbey Weitzeil
50/100 FR ; 100 IM

Emma Weyant
400IM; 400/800 FR

Rhyan White
50/100/200 BK

Men’s Team

Event (s)

Michael Andrew
50 FR; 50/100 BR; 50/100 FLY; 100 IM

Zach Apple
100 FR

Hunter Armstrong
100 BK

Michael Brinegar
1500 FR

Shaine Casas
50/100/200 BK

Nic Fink
50/100/200 BR; 100 IM

Carson Foster
200/400 IM

Zach Harting
200 FLY

Ryan Held
50/100 FR

Trenton Julian
200 FLY

Will Licon
200 BR

Tom Shields
50/100 FLY

Kieran Smith
200/400 FR; 200/400 IM

Hunter Tapp
200 BK

Relays will be chosen by the coaching staff

The team notably does not include any relay-only swimmers. Michael Andrew leads the way with six individual entries, followed by Kieran SmithNic Fink, Melanie Margalis and Torri Huske who all have four.

Smith and Huske represent two of the 12 swimmers on the roster currently competing in the NCAA, while there are four junior swimmers on the women’s side that are still in high school.

Margalis, who is tied with Tom Shields as the oldest member of the team at 30, is coming off a disappointing U.S. Olympic Trials in the summer and isn’t competing in the International Swimming League this season, so her presence here feels significant in signifying she’s back into full training.

There are numerous glaring absences from the U.S. roster, none bigger than Caeleb Dressel, the SCM world record holder in three events and reigning SC world champion in the men’s 100 freestyle.

Other big names missing from the team include fellow SCM world record holder Coleman Stewart (men’s 100 back) and SCM American Record holders such as Lilly KingRyan Murphy and Olivia Smoliga.

Stewart had an explosive performance at the beginning of the International Swimming League (ISL) regular season in late August, breaking the world record in the men’s 100 backstroke in a time of 48.33.

Smoliga exploded for a record eight-gold medal performance at the 2018 SC Worlds in Hangzhou, China, including individual wins in the women’s 50 back and 100 back, while both King and Murphy have been among the top performers in the ISL over the past few years, largely dominating the women’s breaststroke and men’s backstroke events.

USA Swimming also announced eight swimmers that will be competing at the FINA/CNSG Marathon Swim World Series, also taking place in Abu Dhabi on December 15-16, directly before the beginning of the pool competition.

Below are the U.S. athletes competing in the open water event:

 Michael Brinegar (Columbus, Ind./Mission Viejo Nadadores/Indiana University)
 David Heron (Mission Viejo, Calif./Mission Viejo Nadadores)
 Brennan Gravley (Las Vegas, Nev./University of Florida)
 Dylan Gravley (Las Vegas, Nev./Sandpipers of Nevada)
 Joshua Brown (Winter Park, Fla./Highlander Aquatic Club)
 Katie Grimes (Las Vegas, Nev./Sandpipers of Nevada)
 Brooke Travis (Newark, Del./NC State University)
 Mariah Denigan (Walton, Ky./Indiana University)

The meet was initially scheduled to run in December 2020 but was postponed for one year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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