Tarwater makes U.S. Olympic team

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Davis Tarwater is an Olympian after all.

One day after the Webb School graduate swam his last event at the U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials, Tarwater learned that he made the team that will represent the United States in the 2012 London games.

Last week, Tarwater finished seventh in the 200 meter freestyle. The top six finishers in the event qualified for the U.S. relay teams.

However, on Monday, swimming star Michael Phelps announced that he will not swim the 200 meter freestyle in London.

With Phelps out, that bumped everyone up a spot at the trials, and Tarwater's seventh place finish became a sixth--giving Tarwater his first birth on the Olympic team.

"I've been waiting for this day my whole life," Tarwater told WVLT Monday afternoon.

"I sat in my room when I was eight years old day dreaming about this before I fell asleep. I would have loved to have made it outright at the meet, but I'll take any opportunity to represent my country that I possibly can and I can't wait to do it with as much pride as it deserves."

Tarwater received the news at his home in Charlotte. He immediately booked a flight back to Omaha, site of the swimming trials. Once in Omaha, Tarwater will do some paperwork and then will officially be introduced as part of the U.S. Olympic team.

This past week marked the fourth time Tarwater swam at the Olympic trials (2000, 2004, 2008, 2012).

In 2008, Tarwater was one of the favorites to make the Olympic team in the 200 meter butterfly, but he finished third, missing out on the Olympics by six-tenths of a second.

Tarwater grew up in Knoxville. He was a three-time national champion at Michigan.

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