Katharine Berkoff sets women’s record in NCAA 100-yard backstroke


NC State’s Katharine Berkoff defended her NCAA title in the 100-yard backstroke on Friday, shattering the American, U.S. Open, NCAA and Meet records in the process.

Touching the wall in 48.74 seconds, Berkoff became the first woman to swim a 100 backstroke in under 49 seconds.

Gretchen Walsh of Virginia came in second, touching the wall at 49 seconds and also breaking the previous American, U.S. Open, NCAA and Meet Records. Walsh’s record-breaking swim comes on the heels of her historic 50-yard freestyle swim Thursday, the fastest ever by a freshman.

Regan Smith held the previous American and U.S. Open record in the 100-yard backstroke, finishing in 49.16 seconds in 2021 while she was in high school. Wisconsin’s Beata Nelson held the NCAA and Meet records with a time of 49.18 in 2019.