Four Aggies Named to USA Swimming National Team Roster
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- The Texas A&M swimming programs had four swimmers and four coaches named to the U.S. National Team, as announced by USA Swimming on Wednesday. Current junior Shaine Casas qualified for the national team and will be guided by A&M head coach Jay Holmes and associate head coach Jason Calanog, while former student-athletes Lisa Bratton, Bethany Galat and Breeja Larson will compete on the women’s side and be coached by A&M head coach Steve Bultman as well as associate head coach Tanica Jamison
. The 2020-21 USA Swimming National Team is comprised of returning 2019-20 National Team members and athletes that achieved a performance faster than the sixth-place time on the 19-20 roster before March 17, 2020. Additionally, a few athletes already on the 19-20 roster qualified in new events, and event rankings have been updated. There are 115 athletes that have been named to the national team roster, including 59 men and 56 women. Casas will represent the U.S. in the 100 and 200 back, as well as the 200 IM after qualifying for all three events at the 2019 Phillips 66 National Championships. The McAllen, Texas native claimed the 100 back title (52.72), and finished second in the 200 IM (2:00.40) and 200 back (1:55.79) at national championships last summer. After setting six individual school records as a freshman, Casas made it seven in his sophomore season and broke every record he set during his collegiate debut. He claimed the Commissioner’s Cup at the 2020 SEC Championships, given to the top point-earner of the meet. Casas earned gold in the 200 IM and 200 back and took home silver in the 100 back, while also contributing on three school-record setting relay teams at SEC Championships. Already a 13-time All-American, Casas became the third A&M freshman to score individual points at NCAA Championships, and the first to do so in multiple events. Bratton will compete in the 200 back for the national team. During the summer of 2019 she set a new World University Games record in Napoli with a time of 2:07.91 in the 200 back. Her record-setting time earned her a spot on Team USA and ranked as the third-fastest qualifying time in the event. The Richland, Washington native also claimed gold in the 200 back at the 2018 Short Course World Championships. While at A&M, Bratton helped the Aggies capture three straight SEC Championships and notched a pair of top-three finishes at NCAA National Championships. She was a 12-time All-American through her four years in Aggieland, earning first team honors with a fourth-place finish in the 200 back as a senior. Bratton also claimed a pair of individual SEC titles, winning the 200 IM and 200 backstroke as a sophomore. Galat is in her fourth year with the national team and will compete in the 100 and 200 breast. She qualified in the 100 breast with a time of 1:07.13 at the 2019 TYR Pro Swim Des Moines, and the 200 breast with a time of 2:21.84 at the 2019 Pan American Games. Since her time at A&M she has earned a pair of silver medal finishes in the 200 breast, claiming second at the 2018 Short Course World Championships and the 2019 Pan American Games. Galat became an SEC champion in 2016, finishing first in the 200 breaststroke. A classmate of Bratton’s, Galat earned First Team All-America honors in all three events she competed in at the 2018 NCAA National Championships. She finished second in the 200 breast, fourth in the 200 IM and fifth in the 400 IM. Larson will compete in the 100 breast after qualifying for the event with a time of 1:06.78 at the 2019 Phillips 66 National Championships. The Mesa, Arizona native previously competed for the Red, White and Blue following her sophomore year at A&M and earned a Gold Medal with the 400-meter medley relay team at the 2012 Olympics in London. She became the third women’s swimmer in program history to medal at the Olympics and the first to claim gold. Larson still holds the school record in the 100 breast (57.23), set at the 2014 NCAA Championships and is one of just four Aggies to earn 20-plus All-America honors in her career. Larson finished her collegiate career as a three-time NCAA Champion in the 100 breast, setting the NCAA record as a sophomore and later eclipsing her own mark as a junior and again as a senior.