Jackson Carlile, Mariah Denigan Claim Junior National 5K Titles at Open Water Nationals

Jackson Carlile, Mariah Denigan Claim Junior National 5K Titles at Open Water Nationals

 | Saturday, May 5, 2018

Fourteen-year-olds Jackson Carlile (Fishers Area Swimming Tigers) and Mariah Denigan (Northern KY Clippers) took home the 5-kilometer Junior National titles on Saturday at Tempe Town Lake at the USA Swimming Open Water National Championships.

With the victories, Carlile and Denigan will be nominated for a U.S. World Junior Open Water Swimming Championship team  spot to compete in the 5K race in Eilat, Israel in September. Runners up, Conner Hunt (Ridgefield Aquatic Club) and Claire Pophal (Lake Erie Silver Dolphins) will also be nominated.


Men’s 5-kilometer Junior National Championship - Final


  1. Jackson Carlile (Fishers Area Swim Team), 59:57.91
  2. Conner Hunt (Ridgefield Aquatic Club), 1:00:00.26
  3. Gabriel Machado (Boise YMCA Swim Team), 1:00:04.36


  • Today’s race marked Jackson Carlile’s first open water competition.


Jackson Carlile on his 5K strategy: “My plan was to stick back with the lead back and make a move on the third lap, but it got rough on the second lap so I made my move then. Everyone was just toppling over one another and I felt like I was slowing down.”

Jackson Carlile on his first Open Water race: “I haven’t done it before so this is my first time. The first lap was easier than I expected. I felt we went out a little slow. I was hoping for top two and I won.”

Women’s 5-kilometer Junior National Championship - Final


  1. Mariah Denigan (Northern KY Clippers Swimming), 1:01:05.32
  2. Claire Pophal (Lake Erie Silver Dolphins), 1:01:42.34
  3. Anna Auld (East Coast Aquatic Club), 1:02:31.78


  • Fourteen-year-old Mariah Denigan (Walton, Ky./Northern Kentucky Clippers) held a sizable advantage throughout the opening 5K of yesterday’s 10K race.
  • This is Denigan’s second Open Water Nationals.


Mariah Denigan on her 5K strategy: “My strategy was to not go out as fast as I did yesterday, just hang back with the other girls who pushed me very well. Then go on the second lap and take control and take over on the third lap.”

Mariah Denigan on yesterday’s 10K strategy: “Yesterday, my coaches told me to take it out fast because I’m always very timid in the races, so I just wanted to get out there and see how long I could last with the other girls.”

The competition in Tempe continues tomorrow with the senior-level 5K National Championship at 8 a.m., followed by the 7.5K Junior National Championships. A live webcast of each race will be available online at usaswimming.org.

Keep up with all the latest USA Swimming news by following @usaswimming on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.




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