Arlington high school swimmer headed to Tokyo Olympics after breaking record

A high school senior from Arlington will be heading to Tokyo this summer for Team USA after breaking swimming records during this week’s Olympic trials. 

Torri Huske is not your average 18-year-old. She spent most of her time in high school practicing in the Yorktown High School pool, and that practice paid off this week.

Huske finished first at the trials in Omaha with a time of 55.66 seconds--the fastest in the U.S. this year.  Her speed Monday night rebroke a record that she had set on Sunday when she swam the 100-meter butterfly in 55.78 seconds. This broke an American record that hadn’t been touched in nine years.

"It doesn’t even feel real. Like, I don’t even know what to do," Huske said. "I’ve been thinking about this a lot actually and the fact that it just happened. It still hasn’t even sunk in that I’m at Olympic trials. I keep having to remind myself that."

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Huske’s strength coach, Torey Ortmayer says the teen has the potential to win gold.

"The United States of America is the top country when it comes to a sport like swimming, so just having the American record and saying you’re the fastest person to ever do anything in American history is unbelievable," said Ortmayer.

Ortmayer says the pandemic not only delayed the trials and threatened Huske’s chances at making it Tokyo with pools being closed for so long, but it also threatened her training. But Huske refused to let anything stop her. She upped her cross-training and strength workouts and eventually found a small pool to practice in.

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"She was able to swim in a really small pool in the backyard out in Ashburn. It took her three, almost four hours sometimes just to be able to get a complete workout in, and then she would come home she would do her hour-plus weights she would often run hills or again back on the rower or the bike just to be able to keep herself working because nobody knew when the pandemic would end, so she wanted to be ready as soon as it was time to get back in a pool and potentially compete," Ortmayer said. 

While she already has that guaranteed spot on the team for the 100-meter butterfly,  Huske will be spending the rest of the week at the trials in Omaha to qualify for four other races. This means we could potentially see the Arlington native in five different events in Tokyo this summer.