|Full name||Lia Neal|
|National team||United States|
February 13, 1995 |
Brooklyn, New York
|Height||5 ft 10 in (178 cm)|
|Club||Asphalt Green Unified Aquatics (Eastside)|
|College team||Stanford University|
Lia Neal (born February 13, 1995) is an American competitive swimmer who specializes in freestyle events. In her Olympic debut at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, she won a bronze medal in the 4×100-meter freestyle relay. In 2016, she won a silver medal in the same event at Rio de Janeiro.
Neal was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1995, the daughter of Jerome and Siu Neal. She attended the Convent of the Sacred Heart School in New York City, where she was a member of the club swim team, Asphalt Green Unified Aquatics. She now swims for Stanford University, where she attends college.
At the 2012 United States Olympic Trials in Omaha, Nebraska, the U.S. qualifying meet for the Olympics, Neal made the U.S. Olympic team by finishing fourth in the 100-meter freestyle with a time of 54.33 seconds, which qualified her to swim in the 4×100-meter freestyle relay. At the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, Neal won a bronze medal in the 4×100-meter freestyle relay with Missy Franklin, Jessica Hardy and Allison Schmitt, with the U.S. team finishing third behind the teams from Australia and the Netherlands. Swimming the third leg, Neal had a split of 53.65 seconds, and the U.S. team finished with a total time of 3:34.24, an American record. Neal was chosen to swim in the final based on her performance in the heats of the 4×100-meter freestyle. Swimming the lead-off leg in the heats, Neal posted a time of 54.15.
In 2015, Neal became one of the first three people of African-American descent to place in the top three spots at the 100-yard freestyle in any Women’s Division I NCAA Swimming Championship; Simone Manuel was first, Neal was second, and Natalie Hinds was third.
- Crouse, Karen (March 7, 2008). "13-Year-Old Blazes a Lane in Swimming’s Olympic Pool". The New York Times. p. 1. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- Jenee Desmond-Harris, "Olympic Swim Team's 2nd Black Woman," The Root (August 2, 2012). Retrieved August 6, 2012.
- Omega Timing, 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Swimming, Women's 100 m Freestyle (Finals). Retrieved July 9, 2012.
- "Three Black Women Swimmers Make NCAA History". News One. 2015-03-24. Retrieved 2015-04-12.