The University of Akron women’s swimming and diving head coach Brian Peresie announced on Wednesday that 11 student-athletes have committed to the program for the 2015-16 academic year. Emily Christophersen, Karly Crail, Ragen Engel, Sadie Fazekas, Alexandra Hedden, Kim Jones, Emma King, Madison Myers, Ashley Schrock, Victoria Shaffer and Hannah Smith are slated to join the squad next season.
“My staff and I are thrilled to welcome the Class of 2019. We feel each student-athlete brings the specific skill set and character we were seeking,” said Peresie. “Our team is comprised of driven individuals striving to represent the University of Akron at the highest level. We feel these young ladies will fit in right away and make a tremendous impact on our program.
“I want to applaud both Meg Finnerty and Chris Medvedeff’s efforts as we sought out to bring in a transformational recruiting class. We feel we have achieved our objectives and look forward to a bright future with Zips Swimming and Diving.”
Noblesville, Ind./Noblesville High School/Southeastern Swim Club
Top times: 100 butterfly (57.55), 200 IM (2:11.00)
Notes: Christophersen is a three-time Indiana high school state qualifier who finished in the top-20 in the state in the 100-yard butterfly as a junior. Additionally, she has recorded two top-16 finishes coming in the 400-freestyle relay as a freshman and in the 200-medley relay as a sophomore. The senior at Noblesville High School was given Rookie of the Year honors during her freshman year and has been included in the top 10 percent of her class throughout her high school career. Christophersen serves as captain of the Southeastern Swim Club and is a National Honor Society member.
Edgewood, Ky./Notre Dame Academy/Tri-State Diving Club
Notes: Crail is a three-time Academic All-American. She posted a third-place finish in the one-meter dive at the Kentucky High School State Championships. The senior at Notre Dame Academy has received MVP honors over the past three years and is a member of the National Honor Society.
Springfield, Ohio/Springfield Catholic Central/Springfield YMCA
Top times: 50 freestyle (23.67), 100 freestyle (51.83), 100 breaststroke (1:05.11), 100 butterfly (56.54)
Notes: Engel, a three-year Ohio State Finalist and four-time YMCA National Qualifier, finished in the top-10 in four events at the 2014 Ohio High School State Championships. The top-10 finishes came in the 100-yard breaststroke, 50-yard freestyle, 200-yard medley relay and 400-yard freestyle relay. She has been named a USA Academic All-American and a Rae Buick Women in Sports nominee. The three-sport standout is also a state qualifier in track and regional qualifier in cross country. At Springfield Catholic Central, Engel serves as president of the National Honor Society and is a member of the Student Council. She is currently ranked second in her class.
Windsor, Ontario/Sandwich High School/Windsor Aquatic Club
Top times (SCM): 50 freestyle (25.93), 100 freestyle (56.99), 200 freestyle (2:04.56), 50 butterfly (27.11), 100 butterfly (1:01.84), 50 backstroke (28.61), 100 backstroke (1:02.22)
Notes: Fazekas first qualified for Senior Nationals at age 13 and competed at the 2012 Canadian Olympic Trials. She was named age-group champion and Eastern National champion in 50-yard butterfly, 50-yard backstroke and multiple relays. Her championship time in the 50-yard butterfly also made her an Eastern Canadian meet record-holder. She is a provincial champion in 100-yard backstroke, 50-yard freestyle and 100-yard freestyle and is also a three-year Ontario Scholar.
Columbus, Ohio/Upper Arlington High School/Upper Arlington Swim Club
Top times: 50 freestyle (24.19), 100 freestyle (52.72), 200 freestyle (1:54.54)
Notes: Hedden is a three-time qualifier for the Ohio High School State Championships and a recipient of high school All-American honors. She was a member of the 2014 Ohio high school state champion 200-freestyle relay team, which set the championship meet record and Ohio high school record. The relay was the eighth-best time nationally on the 2013-14 National Interscholastic Swim Coaches Association/Speedo Girls High School Swimming All-America list. Hedden also registered two other top-10 finishes at the 2014 Ohio High School State Championship meet. Her high school team was named Ohio state champions during her freshman year and runners-up during her sophomore and junior years. She has also been a member of the three-time state champion water polo team, and served as captain of the team when it claimed its most recent title.
Plainwell, Mich./Plainwell High School
Notes: Jones was named Michigan Junior Olympic Diver of the Year in 2011 and earned two Division III state runner-up titles, in 2011 and 2013. She was crowned Division III State Champion in 2012 and was also honored by the Michigan High School Athletic Association with a Diver of the Meet award in 2012. She is a three-time recipient of high school All-American honors and has been a five-year USA Diving national qualifier. At Plainwell High School, Jones participates in the Peer Assisted Listeners program and is a member of the National Honor Society.
Centerville, Ohio/Centerville High School/Washington Township Recreation Center
Top times: 100 freestyle (52.79), 200 freestyle (1:50.84), 500 freestyle (4:54.42), 200 IM (2:07.62)
Notes: King is a two-time high school All-American and three-time Ohio high school state qualifier in all four of her events. She notched four top-eight finishes at the 2014 Ohio High School State Championships, coming as a member of a 200-yard freestyle relay, a 400-yard freestyle relay and individually in both the 200-yard freestyle and 500-yard freestyle. King’s performances in 200-yard freestyle and 500-yard freestyle qualified her for the National Collegiate Scouting Association Junior Nationals in 2014. Also during her junior year, Centerville High School named her varsity captain and she received Scholar Athlete Award honors. King was named to the WTRC Sharks MVP National Group and declared the Greater Western Ohio Conference Central Division Swimmer of the Year this past season.
Akron, Ohio/Copley High School/Firestone Akron Swim Team
Top times: 50 freestyle (23.67), 100 freestyle (51.32), 200 freestyle (1:50.67), 100 backstroke (54.80), 200 backstroke (2:04.91), 100 butterfly (55.24), 100 breaststroke (1:04.50), 200 IM (2:04.82), 400 IM (4:27.75)
Notes: Myers is a three-time Ohio high school state meet qualifier and a three-time high school All-American. She has qualified for the USA Swimming Junior Nationals over the past two seasons and currently holds every swimming record at Copley High School except for one, the 100-yard breaststroke. Myers has received MVP and Most Outstanding Performance honors from Copley every year of her prep career. She was a top-three finisher at the 2014 Ohio high school state meet in the 100-yard butterfly and 100-yard backstroke, where she also finished in the top-16 as a member of both the 200-yard medley relay and 200-yard freestyle relay.
Carmel, Ind./Concord High School/Concord Swim Club
Top times: 100 breaststroke (1:05.20), 200 breaststroke (2:26.50), 200 IM (2:07.98), 400 IM (4:34.57)
Notes: Schrock is a three-time Indiana high school state qualifier, 2014 Academic All-American and a three-time Academic Scholar. This past season, she was an Indiana high school state qualifier in the 100-yard breaststroke, 200-yard IM, 200-yard medley relay and 200-yard freestyle relay. The senior is a two-time high school MVP and a three-time high school All-Around Award recipient. Schrock is also a member of the National Honor Society at Concord High School.
Upper St. Clair, Pa./Upper St. Clair High School/Upper St. Clair Swim Club
Top times: 50 freestyle (24.10), 100 freestyle (51.75), 200 freestyle (1:54.19), 200 IM (2:08.48)
Notes: Shaffer is a three-time Pennsylvania High School State Championship qualifier and a 2012 high school All-American. The two-time varsity team captain was a state qualifier in the 200-yard IM, 100-yard freestyle, 200-yard freestyle relay and 400-yard freestyle relay. She was selected to be involved in the Natural Helper’s Leadership Program and is a member of Athletes Taking Action.
Beavercreek, Ohio/Beavercreek High School/Dayton Raiders Swim Club
Top times: 100 butterfly (55.42), 200 butterfly (2:02.07)
Notes: Smith has been a NCSA Junior National qualifier every year since 2012 as well as being named a 2014 USA Swimming Winter National Qualifier. Additionally, she has qualified for the Ohio high school state championships three times throughout her high school career and recorded three top-10 finishes in the 2014 Ohio high school state meet. Those top finishes were in the 100-yard butterfly (sixth), 200-yard medley relay (ninth) and the 200-freestyle relay (10th). Her personal-best time of 55.42 in the 100-yard butterfly also makes her a Dayton Raiders Open Team record-holder.
College Swimming News courtesy of the University of Akron.