The Stanford women have added the next major piece to their dynasty. Canadian Olympian Taylor Ruck has committed to the Cardinal, bringing in elite speed in freestyle and backstroke.
Ruck is at the forefront of the youth movement that is revolutionizing the swimming landscape in Canada. At the 2016 Rio Olympics, Ruck swam the 2nd leg of Canada’s 4×200 free relay, splitting a 1:56.18 and helping them to bronze. Then, at the 2016 FINA SC World Championships in Windsor, Ruck grabbed the bronze in the 200 free, going 1:52.50 to set the World Junior record and take over a second and a half off of the old Canadian record.
Ruck has never lost an individual race at the Arizona High School Championships. She competed for Chaparral for three seasons, setting state records in the 100 free, 200 free, and 500 free, and winning six individual titles along with five relay titles.
- 50 free – 22.31
- 100 free – 48.54
- 200 free – 1:44.39
- 500 free – 4:41.38
- 100 back – 52.95
- 200 back – 1:53.13
- 100 free – 53.92
- 200 free – 1:57.87
- 400 free – 4:09.93
- 100 back – 1:00.46
- 200 back – 2:07.62
Ruck, who was born in Canada but moved to Scottsdale, Arizona, when she was 10 months old, has been an exceptional swimmer with the Scottsdale Aquaic Club. Her time there came to an end recently, though, as moved to Toronto in May, and she’ll stay there up until the end of high school before she joins Stanford‘s class of 2022.
Since her move back to Canada, she put down some very convincing backstroke times, highlighted by a 1:00.46 lifetime best in the 100 in Canet in June as well as a 2:07.62 at the recent Canadian Junior Championships in late July. That 2:07 was a huge swim for Ruck, who has excelled in freestyle after proving to be a prominent backstroker earlier in her career. The time of 2:07.62 would have also been fast enough to qualify for the final at the 2017 World Championships in Budapest, though Ruck missed qualification at Canadian Trials this spring.
Ruck’s SCY bests do not match up with the high-level speed that she’s shown in LCM, and she is a huge get for Stanford. Taking her SCY swims at face value, though, her best times in the small pool in both backstrokes, the 100 free, and the 500 free, were all from when she was just 14, with her 200 free best coming in 2015 when she was 15. With those times, she would’ve been a 2017 NCAA B finalist scorer in the 200 free at just 15.
Though Ruck will be the only non-American on the Stanford women’s roster, she will fit right in as a training partner for freestylers Katie Ledecky, Katie Drabot, Lauren Pitzer, and Amalie Fackenthal as well as top 200 backstrokers Erin Voss and Allie Szekely… among others.
The Stanford women are building one of (if not the) fastest, most dominant teams in NCAA history, and certainly in recent memory. Ruck joins an already star-studded Stanford class of 2022, made up of #3 Zoe Bartel, #9 Allie Raab, #15 Amalie Fackenthal (who we reported on yesterday), along with Anya Goeders.
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