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McHugh Medals, Ryan a Finalist at World University Games

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Aug. 20, 2017

TAIPEI – Penn State junior women’s swimmer Ally McHugh (Philadelphia, Pa.) earned a silver medal in the 400-meter individual medley to lead Team USA, while men’s swimming alum Shane Ryan (Havertown, Pa.) helped Ireland set a national record in the 400m freestyle relay and advanced to the 100m backstroke finals himself, Sunday at the World University Games in the Taiwan University Sport Arena.

McHugh touched the wall second in a personal-best 4:40.22, shaving another three-hundredths of a second off her world trials time. McHugh was fourth approaching the final, turn, but swam the fastest final 50-meters (30.59 seconds) to gain more than a second and two seconds, respectively, on the third and fourth place finishers.

However, it was not enough to catch Japan’s Yui Ohashi. Ohashi, who won silver in the 200 IM at the 2017 World Swimming Championships in June, set a Universiade record of 4:34.40. South Korea’s Seoyeong Kim took bronze in 4:41.52, while Sarah Darcel (Canada - California) was fourth in 4:42.07 and Brooke Forde (USA -Stanford), was fifth in 4:44.04.

“It feels pretty cool, pretty amazing,” McHugh told “I definitely wasn’t expecting to go that fast and do so well, so I’m really happy to get a medal for the U.S.”

McHugh becomes the second Penn State women’s swimmer to medal at the World University Games and the first since Kristen Elias earned silver in the 100m butterfly at the 1989 games in Bulgaria.

Ryan had a busy start Sunday, swimming twice both in the morning and at night. Individually, Ryan advanced to the finals of the 100-meter backstroke, ranking sixth after the semifinals with a top swim of 54.63 seconds. He also contributed to an Irish record in the 400m freestyle relay, as the team finished seventh in 3:19.39.

“Today was about having clean swims and setting up for the final on Monday night,” Ryan told Swim Ireland. “The relay is always for the boys and Ireland, you put your head down and just swim smart and fast.”



Finals for the 100m backstroke are slated for 7:15 a.m. ET Monday. Taipei is located 12 hours ahead of the Eastern Time Zone. Ryan will also compete in the men’s 400m medley relay, with preliminary heats starting at 9 p.m. ET Friday, Aug. 25. The final will be at 8:30 a.m. ET, Saturday, Aug, 27.

McHugh earned her place on the U.S. team with a fourth-place finish in the 400m IM at the U.S. Phillips 66 Nationals in June. Ryan was a semifinalist in the 100m back for Ireland at both the Rio Olympics in 2016 and the FINA World Championships last month.

The World University Games are organized every two years by the International University Sports Federation. The 22-sport event will feature approximately 7,000 participants ages 17-23 who are current college students or recent graduates.

Check for coverage of the Penn State swimming and diving teams during the season. Follow the team on Twitter at @PennStateSWIM and on Facebook at


Date – Time (ET)



8/21 – 7:15 a.m.

Men’s 100m Back Finals

Shane Ryan

8/25 – 9:00 p.m.

Men’s 400m Medley Relay Prelims

Shane Ryan

8/26 – 8:30 a.m.

Men’s 400m Medley Relay Finals

Shane Ryan*


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