PALO ALTO, Calif. -Tim Phillips called it a warm-up. He probably can't wait for the real thing.
The 20-year-old swimmer from Vienna and his teammates from SwimMAC Carolina's Team Elite squad captured gold in the 4x100 freestyle relay during the ConocoPhillips USA Swimming National Championships late Tuesday night at Stanford University's Avery Aquatic Center.
The foursome of Nicholas Brunelli, Phillips, Josh Schneider and Eugene Godsoe posted a winning time of 3:18.55. A squad from Stanford followed in second place at 3:19.60. Phillips set a personal best with a 49.18 split.
"I'm pretty much using this as a warm-up and to get used to the atmosphere," Phillips said.
Phillips resumes his competition schedule this morning with the 100 butterfly prelims- an event he is seeded second behind Tyler McGill.
"First of all, I have to do the work in the morning prelims and not just in the afternoon (for the finals)," Phillips said. "Obviously, I'm pretty pumped. I'm relaxed and haven't thought about it too much."
Phillips also is scheduled to compete in the 100 freestyle and the 400 medley relay later this week. The US Nationals continue through Saturday night.
Members of the West Virginia University swim team also participated. The best performance was turned in by junior Rachael Burnett, who advanced to the 'C' finals in the 400 freestyle and finished 26th in a time of 4:17.27.
"WVU swimming got off to a great start to our nationals," WVU coach Vic Riggs said. "Breanna McCann got us going with a lifetime best in the 200 IM just under a second off an Olympic Trials cut. Rachael had a seven-second drop in her 400 free and earned her first final swim at this level. Jake (Querciagrossa) swam a best time by five seconds in his 400 IM, again just off the National cut."