Spring Grove's Hali Flickinger advances to women's 200-meter fly Olympic final
In 24 hours time, Hali Flickinger could be wearing Olympic gold around her neck.
The Spring Grove High graduate advanced to the women's 200-meter butterfly finals after she posted a time of 2 minutes, 6.23 seconds in the semifinal race on Tuesday night. Flickinger was the No. 2 swimmer during the two semifinal heats ahead of Wednesday night's final event.
China's Zhang Yufei took the top spot with a time of 2:04.89.
The Associated Press projected her to win a gold medal in the 200 fly before the Olympics began. Flickinger finished seventh in the event at the 2016 Rio Games.
Flickinger also had the second fastest time in the preliminary heats at 2:08.31. She was beat by the world record holder Yufei who finished first at 2:07.50.
With a spot on the podium projected for Flickinger on Wednesday night, she already is guaranteed to leave Tokyo with some hardware.
Flickinger claimed the bronze medal in the women's 400-meter individual medley with a time of 4:34.90. Japan's Yui Ohashi won gold in 4:32.08 and Flickinger's American teammate, Emma Weyant, took silver at 4:32.76.
There will be a watch party for Flickinger at Spring Grove Middle School from 8:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. on Wednesday. The 200 fly final is set to start at 10:28 p.m.
Reach Rob Rose at email@example.com.