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BYU swim: Jake Taylor advances to finals at U.S. Olympic Trials

Jake Taylor (center) of BYU ponders before one of his Monday heats in the 100 backstroke and has now advanced to Tuesday night's finals as one of eight swimmers in the 100 backstroke at the U.S. Olympic Trials.
Jake Taylor (center) of BYU ponders before one of his Monday heats in the 100 backstroke and has now advanced to Tuesday night's finals as one of eight swimmers in the 100 backstroke at the U.S. Olympic Trials.
BYU swim

Jake Taylor of BYU swim and dive advanced to the Tuesday night finals in the 100 backstroke at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials.

The All-American Taylor from Honeyville, Utah, joins Ryan Murphy in the eight-man finals along with David Plummer, previous Olympic gold medalist Matthew Grevers, Jacob Pebley, Michael Taylor, Sean Lehane and John Shebat at the CenturyLink Center.

Taylor was one of 16 to advance through the Monday morning prelims, then emerged as one of eight in the evening semifinals with a time of 54.07. He clocked splits of 25.95 in the first 50 meters, closing with a 28.12 in the final 50 of the second semifinal heat. His time places him seventh among the eight finalists.

Murphy's time in the first 50 was under world record pace, and he went on to win the first heat semifinal in 52.28.

The Tuesday 100 back finals will be televised live on NBC as the fourth race between the time of 7-8 p.m. MDT. The top-two finishers in the 100 back make the 40-man Olympic team. Taylor's teammate Preston Jenkins did not advance out of the Monday morning 100 back prelims, placing 37th with a time of 56.06.

Taylor will also compete in the 200 back along with Jenkins on Thursday morning, hoping to advance to that evening's semifinals. On Wednesday, Cougar Payton Sorenson competes in the 100 freestyle and joins teammate Connor Stirling on Friday in the prelims of the 50 free. The top-two placers in the freestyle make the Olympic team, plus the next four finishers who comprise the free relays along with two alternates.

Ralph R. Zobell has worked for BYU Athletic Media Relations in various capacities for over 30 years. You can view his bio at byucougars.com/staff/athletics/ralph-zobell or contact him at ralph_zobell@byu.edu.