Arizona has an unusually small women’s roster for the 2013-2014 season, of only 17 athletes, but that should leave a ton of scholarship money freed up for this fall: especially with the graduations of NCAA Champions like Sam Pickens and Margo Geer.
Arizona started spending that money early with a verbal commitment of Finnish sprinter Laura Kurki, who will join the squad in the fall of 2014.
Kurki has long course bests of 25.68 and 56.81 in the 50 and 100 meter freestyles, and thus far in her career has been even better in short course meters. Her SCM bests convert to 23.43 and 49.39, respectively, in yards.
She’s also a solid butterflier. with long course bests of 27.99 and 1:02.69 in the 50 and 100 meter distances.
Arizona had exceptional free relays at the 2013 NCAA Championships, placing 3rd in the 200 and 2nd in the 400. They should be good again, led by the country’s top sprinter Margo Geer, but all four members of both of those relays will be gone by the time Kurki arrives on campus, so she could serve as the corner-stone as Arizona rebuilds that group.
The Wildcats have a relatively-late start to their season, with their first meet coming against Utah, in Salt Lake City, on October 19th. They will then welcome in UNLV, UCLA, and USC over the next three weeks.
Kurki will be 20 by the time she begins her freshman campaign in the fall, if all goes according to expectation.