Elaina Lanson: On the big stage

Katie Tolbert

This past weekend one of Georgia Southern’s top senior swimmers, Elaina Lanson, took part in the 2014-2015 Arena Pro Swim Series in Orlando, Fla.

This meet included all of the top swimmers from around the world competing to make the cut for the Olympic trials. This included 2008 Olympian Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace from the Bahamas, swimming with SwimMAC Carolina.

Not only was Lanson doing this event in addition to her collegiate swimming, but she also has been dealing with an injury.

“I have a partial tear in my achillies, and I’ve had to back off a lot of yardage especially kicking yardage and practicing starts,” Lanson said. “I didn’t really add anything to my collegiate training, just kind of used that and went off my taper that was planned for conference.”

Many swimmers were at the meet with their affiliated club teams, but Lanson was in the minority as being ‘unattached.’ She was also one of only two swimmers represented from the state of Georgia.

“I went with one of my college coaches, Miffy, and a club coach from Savannah that helps out at some of our practices. It was nice to have the support from multiple coaches at this big meet,” Lanson said.

Lanson had an early start Friday morning as the meet began with the preliminary round at 9 a.m. Her only event for this meet was the 50 freestyle, which is her best. This round was held in order to narrow down the competition for the finals.

In the preliminaries, Lanson placed 19 overall with a time of 26.89. This put her way above the cut because only the top 32 girls made it to the final round.

The meet started early and ended late. The final round was held at 6 p.m. Lanson needed to get back in the water, and give the 50 freestyle another attempt with even more energy then before. And, she did just that.

Not only did Lanson move up a rank, but she also shaved time off. She finished the meet as No. 18 with a time of 26.71. Unfortunately, she did not qualify for the trials, but Lanson mentioned how she moved up 20 places in the meet.

“The meet was really fun and exciting because there were a lot of big names there,” Lanson said. “Doing this meet gave me a lot of confidence going into our conference championships, and I can’t wait to see how the hard work the team has put in all year pays off.”

Lanson will be back on the road tomorrow, but with her whole Eagle team. The Eagles will be heading to Athens for the CCSA Championships.