Cullen Jones had a superb race in the men's 100 freestyle Friday night, making his second straight Olympic team by finishing second. By doing that, he will get to swim the race both individually and in the relay.
That brought the total to five swim Olympians with N.C. ties -- Jones, Charlotte's Ricky Berens (who has made both the 100 and 200 relay teams), Raleigh's Charlie Houchin (200 men's relay), Charlotte's Nick Thoman (100 backstroke) and Greenville, N.C.'s Lauren Perdue (200 women's relay).
And that number could go higher, with three days of the U.S. Olympic Trials meet left and a handful of swimmers still with decent shots at the ultimate honor in the sport.
Last time, in 2008, there were three swimming Olympians with N.C. ties (Jones and Berens were joined by Mark Gangloff, who at the time trained in Charlotte).
The most unlikely of those five in 2012 so far is Perdue, who starred at Greenville Rose High and now at Virginia. I'll be focusing my Sunday column on her. She had back surgery less than three months ago and was only seeded No.18 in the 200 women's freestyle but had a lifetime-best swim to finish fourh.
6 months ago