Oregon State sophomore Felicia Anderson has qualified for the U.S. Open Swimming National Championships and will compete in the 100- and 200-meter backstroke. The event, which is open to all U.S. and international swimmers who meet qualifying times in various events, runs Wednesday through Sunday at the Nassau County Aquatic Center in New York.
“It’s a tremendous accomplishment to qualify for this prestigious meet and it is a result of her commitment to training in and out of the pool,” second-year Beavers head swim coach Jennifer Buffin said. “Felicia has already made huge strides in this sport in her young career and this event continues her on a trek to her ultimate goals.”
Anderson, who is the granddaughter to OSU Hall of Fame basketball coach/player Jimmy Anderson, qualified for the U.S. Open in both events in May, posting times of 1:03.48 in the 100 backstroke and 2:17.11 in the 200 backstroke in Olympic long course meters timing.
“I was obviously very excited, but it wasn’t something I expected to happen when it did,” Anderson said. “It was the middle of the season and I wasn’t prepared to be going for my best times. So, it was really awesome, and shows how well the training is working with the team.”
Anderson, a business and communications major, is coming off a freshman season that included six first-place finishes in the 100-yard backstroke. She posted a personal record of 54.90 at the Pac-12 Championships in a college format, marking the fifth fastest time in school history. The Central Catholic High grad also was part of the Beavers’ 200-medley relay team that posted a school record at last winter’s conference meet. She also possesses the fourth-best OSU mark ever in the 200 backstroke.
“My ultimate goal is to make the Olympic Trials in 2020,” Anderson said. “This is the step under Olympic Trials. Hopefully, I’ll get my times at this upcoming meet and then I’ll be set for three years from now. This is the biggest meet in the United States for the rest of the summer, so I’m very excited about it. It’s the biggest meet I’ve ever been to in my swimming career.
“I just want to take it one meet at a time. My short term goals are what I want to focus on right now and have a good time while doing so.”
Anderson will compete Wednesday and Saturday. If she is among the top 24 in the preliminaries that begin at 6 a.m. in either event, she will advance to the finals at 2 p.m.