American Caeleb Dressel wins record 8th swimming medal at worlds

GWANGJU, South Korea — This time, Caeleb Dressel stands alone.

The American won his record eighth medal at the world swimming championships Sunday, helping the U.S. to silver in the 4×100-meter medley relay after anchor Nathan Adrian got overtaken for gold in the closing meters.

“Part of me is very happy,” Dressel said. “Part of me wants to cry that I’m done with it.”

One night after becoming the first swimmer to win three golds in one night at a worlds for the second time, Dressel’s haul included six golds at the biggest meet after the Olympics.

“It was a very tough week,” he said. “I knew I was going to have to come with fire, passion and pride in every single race.”

Two years ago in Hungary, Dressel tied Michael Phelps’ record of seven golds at a single worlds.

Dressel hauled the U.S. from fourth to first on his butterfly leg with a split of 49.28 seconds. Adrian, a Cal alum, found himself in a three-way fight with Britain and Russia coming down the stretch. Brit Duncan Scott surged ahead approaching the wall and got there first with a split of 46.14 to Adrian’s 47.60.

“That last 15 meters, it’s tough,” Adrian said. “I was trying to be strong, I was trying to hold on, but this time I couldn’t do it.”

Luke Greenbank, Adam Peaty, James Guy and Scott won for Britain in 3 minutes, 28.10 seconds.

Cal alum Ryan Murphy, Andrew Wilson, Dressel and Adrian finished in 3:28.45. It was the second silver in an event the Americans have won 13 times.

Dressel’s golds came in the 50 and 100 free, 50 and 100 butterfly, mixed 4×100 free relay and 4×100 free relay. His other silver was in the mixed 4×100 medley relay. He was FINA’s male swimmer of the meet.

The U.S. team finished atop the medals table with 27, including a leading 14 golds. Australia was second with 19 and five golds.

Stanford alum Simone Manuel completed a sweep of the 50 and 100 freestyles, the first American woman to achieve the feat. She won four golds and six medals overall in the eight-day competition.

Sweden’s Sarah Sjostrom became the first woman to win five medals in individual events at a single worlds. She won the 50 butterfly, silvers in the 100 fly and 50 free, and bronzes in the 100 free and 200 free, and won FINA female swimmer of the meet.

Beth Harris is an Associated Press writer.

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