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Hunter Armstrong bounces back from a bad start to advance to the Trials final

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA – JUNE 16: Hunter Armstrong of the United States reacts after the semifinals of the men’s 100 meter backstroke on day two of the 2024 U.S. Olympic team swimming trials at Lucas Oil Stadium on June 16, 2024 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS (WCMH) – After slipping at the start, Hunter Armstrong went from last to second to earn a spot in the men’s 100-yard backstroke final Monday night at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials.

The former Buckeye and world champion struggled to get off the wall at the start of his semifinal heat on Sunday at Lucas Oil Stadium, explaining that a camera on the starting block led to his poor start.

“I knew from the start that something was wrong. The camera they put on the block is exactly where I wanted to put my hand. So I pushed it a little bit. As soon as I got my mark, the wedge moved,” Armstrong said.

Armstrong was eighth halfway through the race, but swam furiously to second place in his heat with a time of 53.57, the fourth fastest time overall in the semi-finals.

“I’m fortunate that I was able to get the job done and tomorrow I get a second chance,” Armstrong said.

The Dover, Ohio, native is looking to make his second Olympic appearance with Team USA and won seven medals at the world championships in Doha this year, including an individual gold medal in the 100-meter backstroke.

Monday night’s finale airs on NBC4 with coverage beginning at 8 p.m