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3 IU swimmers clinch spot in Tokyo Olympics

Zach Apple, Michael Brinegar and Blake Pieroni qualified for Team USA at the men's swimming trials in Omaha.

OMAHA, Neb. — Three Indiana University swimmers punched their tickets to Tokyo Thursday night.

Columbus native Michael Brinegar came in second during Thursday's men's 800-meter freestyle final at the U.S. Swimming Trials in Omaha, Nebraska. While Brinegar won't know for sure if he made the Olympic team until trials are over, it's likely that his finish will earn him a spot on Team USA. 

Brinegar, a two-time All-American, just finished his redshirt sophomore year for IU.

Zach Apple, a 2019 IU alum, finished second in the men's 100-meter freestyle final Thursday to secure his spot on Team USA. 

2016 Olympic medalist Blake Pieroni, who missed a chance at his second Olympic team earlier in the week when he finished seventh in the 200-meter freestyle, finished third in the 100-meter freestyle. That finish places him with Apple on the 100-meter freestyle relay team for Tokyo.

Phenom Lilly King continued her domination Thursday, finishing first in the women's 200-meter breaststroke semifinals, seven-hundredths of a second ahead of Annie Lazor, who trains in Bloomington. 

King will look to secure her spot in another event in the final Friday night. South Bend's Bethany Galat is also in the 200 breast final Friday night with a chance to make her first Olympics.

Carmel's Kelly Pash, who swims collegiately at Texas, finished fifth in Thursday night's final of the Women's 200 Meter Butterfly. It was Pash's second top-8 finish at Trials after she placed 6th in the 100 Butterfly earlier this week.

Hali Flickinger lowered her meet record in winning the 200 Fly in 2:05.85.

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