After Freshman Year, Notre Dame’s Sinead Eksteen Transfers to D3 Rhodes College

Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee has released their schedule for the 2019-2020 NCAA season, and a surprising name has appeared: sophomore Sinead Eksteen.

Eksteen, from Vienna, Virginia, swam for Notre Dame last season where she was a 3-event ACC scorer, a member of an NCAA-Championship-qualifying relay, and a member of the All-ACC team. Her best individual finish at ACCs was 7th in the 1650 free (16:18.80) as part of a 44-point individual scoring haul for the Irish.

She was also on Notre Dame’s 3rd-place 800 free relay at the ACC Championships, splitting 1:46.60 on their 2nd leg. That team was fast enough to earn an NCAA Championship invite, but she was ultimately replaced by Skylar Fore at NCAAs, who split 1:47.21 when the relay finished 19th at nationals.

Lifetime Best Freshman Year Best
100 free 49.85 51.01
200 free 1:46.53 1:48.10
500 free 4:44.11 4:45.56
1000 free 9:45.69 9:58.89
1650 free 16:18.60 16:18.60

For Rhodes, which had one NCAA Division III qualifier last season (the now-graduated Allie Hill), Eksteen is a program-changing addition.

Where Eksteen’s Freshman Season Bests Would Have Ranked at the 2019 Division III NCAA Championship Meet:

  • 200 free – 3rd
  • 500 free – 1st
  • 1650 free – 1st

Last year, the Rhodes women finished 2nd at the Southern Athletic Conference (SAA) championship meet with 833 points; that put them only 89 points behind the champions Birmingham-Southern College. Individually, Eksteen could account for the maximum 60 points this season, and she’ll likely be a 4-relay contributor as well.

Rhodes begins their 2019-2020 NCAA season with an intrasquad meet on September 28th before heading south to Mississippi for a dual meet against Division II Delta State. Rhodes named Steve Webb as its new head coach on July 22nd.

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1 year ago

Wow! This is such a unique—if not bizarre—transfer outcome. Rhodes isn’t exactly a D3 powerhouse athletically or academically, but at the end of the day it is the student’s decision to find where they fit best. Best of luck to her!

Reply to  Quack
1 year ago

Emma Paulson did this a few years ago when she transferred from Wisconsin where she was a B1G champ to St. Thomas which is kind of a similar school profile wise. It looked like it was a great decision for her and it definitely helped their team. Transfers like this are usually good for all involved! Good luck to Sinead on her new team.

Get it?
Reply to  Quack
1 year ago

I guess she wanted to be a Rhodes Scholar…hehehe!!

Reply to  Quack
1 year ago

Rhodes is academically a very strong liberal school. And, I have no affiliation to the school.

Reply to  Braden Keith
1 year ago


Reply to  Quack
1 year ago

Rhodes is a top 50 National Liberal Arts college, and among religious institutions, a top 20 school. I think it is good for more and more swimmers to realize that D3 swimming is more fun, collegial and balanced for a student-athlete. Best Wishes to the swimmer and Rhodes!a

1 year ago

Arizona State and NC State are jealous they didn’t think of this first….

Rhodes is on the Rise
1 year ago

This is a game changer! Rhodes has a legitimate shot at the conference title this year and for years to come, and could also be a force nationally. Looks like their men’s team finished 2nd at conference last year as well with an returning All-American in Hayden Hill who still has two years left. #RollLynx

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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