Flach Makes Team USA Roster For World University Games
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- South Carolina junior swimmer Michael Flach has been selected to the United States roster for the 2013 World University Games, USA Swimming announced Tuesday.
Flach, who was among 39 swimmers to make the roster, will compete in the 200-meter butterfly at the Games on July 6-17 in Kazan, Russia.
"I'm excited and very grateful for the opportunity to represent both the United States and the University of South Carolina on the international stage," Flach said. "After the Olympic Trials this past summer, the coaching staff at South Carolina challenged me to take the next step in reaching my goals and not wait on the opportunity. They kept me focused and were a huge factor in my success in being selected to the team. I think this is a big indication of the direction this program is headed, and we look to build off of this as we begin a new season where our team expectations are very high."
Taking place every two years, the World University Games is an international multi-sport event organized for university athletes by the International Sports Federation (FISU). Swimmers on the 2013 World University Games roster were selected based upon their performance at the 2012 U.S. Open Championships.
A native of Annandale, Va., Flach earned his spot on the team with a second-place finish in the 200 butterfly at the U.S. Open, which was held in August in Indianapolis, Ind. After sneaking into the championship final with the eighth fastest time in the preliminaries (2:00.75), Flach shaved more than two seconds off his time in the finals to touch second in 1:58.40, securing his spot on the team.
"It has been fun watching Michael's progression over the last few years," South Carolina head coach McGee Moody said. "He is really starting to see the results of a lot of hard work. I know he will represent our team well at the World University Games."
Flach had an impressive performance earlier this summer on the national stage as he finished eighth in the 200 butterfly at the U.S. Olympic Trials. He became the first Gamecock to make the finals since 1988.
South Carolina associate head coach Jason Memont, who has been poolside with Flach at both the Olympic Trials and the U.S. Open, couldn't be more proud of Flach's accomplishment.
"Michael has dedicated himself for three years to achieve his goal of making an international team," Memont said. "I believe this is just the beginning of his experience with international swimming. Gamecock nation and our swimming alumni everywhere should be very excited about this honor."
As for the 2012-13 NCAA season, Flach and the Gamecocks will open the year on Oct. 13 at home against new SEC member Texas A&M and North Carolina.