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Commonwealth Games: Record-Breaking Arianna Finishes Fourth

By BRENT STUBBS

Senior Sports Reporter

bstubbs@tribunemedia.net

GLASGOW: There was no better way for Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace to sum up her national record breaking fourth place finish in the Bahamas' first appearance in a final at the Commonwealth Games.

"I fully believe that there is a plan for me in this life and it wasn't my time to win and it wasn't my time to get a medal," said Vanderpool-Wallace after she missed the trip to the podium.

The 24-year-old touched the wall in 24.34 seconds to erase her Bahamas national record of 24.42 she posted for the third fastest qualifying time in the semifinal on Friday. The previous record she held was recorded at the 2010 London Olympic Games where she also made history as the first Bahamian to advance to a swimming final.

But this time in Glasgow, she had to watch as the medals went to Francesca Halsall of England, lowering her games record from 24.14 in the semifinal to 23.96, as she held off a strong challenge from the Australian sister tandem of Cate and Bronte Campbell for the silver and bronze in 24.00 and 24.20 respectively.

And even though she came back later in the night and clinched another appearance in a final in the 50m butterfly, she really wanted to medal in her specialty in the 50m free.

"I have to keep my head held high because I have two more races to go, so I'm excited because I can't wait to see how I will do in the 50 fly and the 100 freestyle."

After coming so close to a historic medal for the Bahamas, Vanderpool-Wallace bounced back in the semifinal of the women's 50 fly for a second place in 25.90, erasing her national record of 26.44 in the preliminaries earlier in the day. In her semi she place second behind - guess who - Halsall, who lowered her games' record in winning the heat in 25.38. She erased the previous mark when she won her preliminaries in 25.64.

"She's having an incredible meet right now," said Vanderpool-Wallace of Halsall. "She's really doing really well. She's one of my good friends, so I'm happy for her that she's swimming this fast, but you know what, she has a target on her back right now and I will be going after her."

On Sunday, Vanderpool-Wallace will be back for her third attempt at a final when she once again competes in the same heat with fellow Bahamian Ariel Weech in the women's 100m freestyle at 5:55 am EST. Weech will be in lane one and Vanderpool-Wallace will be in five.

Record breaking teenagers Dustin Tynes and Joanna Evans, who will be heading to the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing, China in August, will also be in action. Tynes will be in lane seven of heat four of the men's 50m breaststroke at 5:43 am EST, while Evans will swim out of lane eight in heat three of the women's 800m free at 7:06 am EST.

The action is expected to heat up for the Bahamas on Sunday as the much anticipated track and field competition will kick off at the Hampden Park.

Competing first in the blocks will be the men's 100m preliminaries. In heat one at 9:51 am EST, Warren Fraser will be in lane six; Adrian Griffith will contest lane eight in heat five at 10:05 am EST and national champion Shavez Hart will be in one in the final heat of nine at 10:33 am EST.

The first two in each heat and the next six fastest times will advance to the semifinals that will begin at 12:35 pm. The final will conclude that night at 4:50 pm EST.

That will be followed by the women's 100m heats. In lane five in the second heat at 11:02 am will be Cache Armbrister and at 11:06 am, Sheniqua 'Q' Ferguson will run out of lane two in the third heat.

The first three in each heat and the next six fastest times will advance to the semifinal that will be held on Monday, starting at 2:10 pm.

The final will be contested at 4:35 pm EST.

Before the night is out, Shaunae Miller will line up first in the women's 400m preliminaries. She will be in lane three in the first of six heats at 12:02 pm. Then at 12:23 pm, Lanece Clarke will run out of lane six in the fifth heat.

The first three in each heat and the next six fastest times will advance to the semifinal that will begin on Monday starting at 3:15 pm EST.

The final will close out Tuesday's agenda at 3:18 pm EST.

And at the SECC Hall, Rashield Williams will be in action in the men's light welterweight division in boxing. He will follow the second round TKO victory for pacesetter Carl Hield on Friday in the welterweight division.

While judo was the first of the six disciplines to be done, the one-man wrestling team and the men's cyclists are still waiting to start competing later in the week.

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