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Alabama trio at the FINA Championships – News – Tuscaloosa News

HANGZHOU, China — A trio of Alabama swimming and diving alums raced at the 2018 FINA World Short Course Swimming Championships in Hangzhou, China over the past week.

Three-time NCAA Champion Kristian Gkolomeev, Southeastern Conference Scholar-Athlete of the Year Anton McKee and Abbas Qali all saw action in the six-day event.

Swimming for his native Iceland, McKee competed in the 50, 100 and 200-meter breaststroke events, posting top-25 finishes in all three. The 2017 Crimson Tide senior opened the championships with a semifinal finish in the 100m breaststroke, posting a career-best 57.57 and setting a new Icelandic national record.

The 2017 NCAA runner-up in the 200 breaststroke, McKee took 10th in the event at the World Championships, cranking out a 2:04.37, ranking him 21st in the world this year. It is also the second-fastest time in Icelandic history. McKee closed out the championships with a 21st-place finish in the 50m breaststroke, touching the wall at 26.74.

Gkolomeev, who finished his UA career in 2016, posted top-25 finishes in the 50 and 100m freestyles and the 50m butterfly. The Greek native tied for 16th in the 50 freestyle, posting a 21.28. He was also 25th in the 100 freestyle after stopping the clock at 47.63. He was 24th in the 50m butterfly, while Qali, a 2016 senior and a native of Kuwait, took 50th with a 24.43.

Alabama senior Robert Howard (United States) and junior Zane Waddell (South Africa) both earned spots at the World Championships but passed to focus on the NCAA season.

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