2019 Ohio High School D2 Runner-Up Claire Pophal Stays Local, Verbals to OSU

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Claire Pophal of the Lake Erie Silver Dolphins is staying in-state with a verbal commitment to OSU for fall 2021. Pophal is a senior at Hawken High School in Gates Mills, Ohio.

I am THRILLED to announce my verbal commitment to swim at The Ohio State University! A HUGE thank you to my distance ladies and Coach Rick❤️ GO BUCKS!


  • 200 free – 1:51.72
  • 500 free – 4:53.25
  • 1000 free – 10:07.10
  • 1650 free – 16:57.94

At the 2020 Ohio HS Division II State Championships, Pophal raced to third in the 500 free (4:56.17), and she was the 500 free runner-up in 2019. In 2019, she was also fourth in the 200 free, and she went her current lifetime bests in both at that meet.

The Buckeyes’ top distance returner this season is junior Sally Tafuto (4:41.2/16:13). OSU was incredibly deep last season; they had nine women under 4:50 in the 500 free, though they graduated sub-4:40 500 freestylers Molly Kowal and Kathrin Demler in 2020.

Pophal joins a big class of 2025 for OSU, including distance specialists Malia Rausch (1:45.9/4:40.2/16:19) and Mia Rankin (4:48.9/16:30).

There’s a ton of distance free talent incoming for the Buckeyes, too, including Malys (4:47/16:29) and Peterson (4:48/16:52) in the 2026 class.

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1 month ago

CollegeSwimming has her as a senior this year, and her Instagram says she is a part of OSU’s class of 25.

Misha Fan
Reply to  anonymous
1 month ago

She is class of 25, the article just mentions two distance swimmers who will join as class of 26

1 month ago

She is also a past member of the USA Swimming national junior team

Marcus Drake
1 month ago

Claire is in the class of 2021

About Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon studied sociology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, graduating in May of 2018. He began swimming on a club team in first grade and swam four years for Wesleyan.

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