“I felt good in the water,” Hersey said. “The crowd was going crazy and it helped me finish. This is my third medal and it’s the most amazing experience I have ever experienced in swimming.” Courtney Kalisz (Bel Air, Md.) finished behind Hersey in 2:12.75, winning silver in the 200m fly. Brazil's Daiene Dias won the bronze in 2:13.35.
In the men’s 1500m free, Peterson led the field throughout most of the race to win his first gold of the Games and set a Pan Am Games record in 15:12.33, Peterson was the silver medalist in the Pan American Games’ 10k open water event held one week ago at Copacabana Beach. Ricardo Monasterio of Venezuela finished in 15:23.28 to win the 1500m free silver and Canada's Kier Maitland swam a 15:25.28 for bronze. USA's Robert Margalis (St. Petersburg, Fla.) was fourth in 15:34.49.
Scott Spann (Austin, Texas) became the third member of his family to medal at the Pan American Games with his third place finish in the men’s 200m breast. His sister topped the women’s 200m breast at the 2003 Pan American Games while his father won a bronze medal at the 1979 Pan American Games. Spann finished in 2:13.98. Brazil's Thiago Pereira won his sixth gold of the games in 2:13.51, edging out his teammate Henrique Barbosa, who won silver in 2:13.83. “It feels good to medal for the inner-family rivalry, but I’m most happy with my finishing time,” Spann said. “It sets me up well for trials next year.”
Eddie Erazo (San Diego, Calif.) captured the silver in the 200m fly in 1:57.07, while Brazil's Kaio Marcio Almeida set a Pan Am record to win gold in 1:55.45. Mexico's Juan Jose Veloz Davila finished third at 1:58.43, and USA's Pat Cary (Coto De Caza, Calif.) was sixth in 1:59.06. “I was trying to pace myself with Kaio,” Erazo said. “We have a similar strategy when it comes to racing and I tried to speed up to stay with him. I tend to take it out a little slow and this way I was out fast and did well.”
In semifinal action, Teresa Crippen (Philadelphia, Pa.) qualified first for the 200m back final with a time of 2:12.75, while Julia Smit (Mt. Sinai, N.Y.) took the third spot with a 2:13.50. Lauren Thies (Portland, Ore.) earned the fourth qualifying spot in the 100m free with a 56.47, while Randall Bal (Fair Oaks, Calif.) and Peter Marshall (Atlanta, Ga.) both swam the 100m back in 56:04 to tie for the second-best semifinal time and earn a spot in the final.
In the men’s 50m free, Olympic gold medalist Gary Hall, Jr. (Miami Beach, Fla.) qualified for the sixth spot in Sunday’s final in 22.86, and Gabe Woodward (Bakersfield, Calif.) qualified eighth in 23.11. Brazil’s Cesar Cielo Filho had the top time in the semifinal in 22.18, setting a new Pan Am record.
Swimming competition at the Pan American Games wraps up Sunday with finals starting at 10 a.m. local time.
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