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BARCELONA, Spain – The future of the U.S. women’s swimming team is in good hands.

Missy Franklin, an 18-year-old from Centennial, Colo., earned her fifth gold medal of this year’s world championships with a decisive victory in the 200-meter backstroke Saturday, tying the record for most titles by a woman at the every-other-year competition.

“That was awesome,” said Franklin, who won four golds and a bronze at the London Olympics last year.

American Tracy Caulkins (1978) and Australian Libby Trickett (2007) also won five gold medals at one world meet.

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Franklin has one event remaining — the 400 medley relay — and a chance to join Michael Phelps, Mark Spitz and Kristin Otto as the only swimmers to win as many as six golds at a single worlds or Olympics meet.

Katie Ledecky, a 16-year-old from Bethesda, Md., won her fourth gold medal and set her second world record when she took the 800 freestyle in 8 minutes, 13.86 seconds. She surpassed the record of 8:14.10 set by Britain’s Rebecca Adlington at the 2008 Olympics.

Nathan Adrian of Bremerton finished fourth in the 50 free in 21.60. Cesar Cielo of Brazil won the event in 21.32.