Auburn Adds Louisville’s Nevmovenko, Finnish Record Holder Kalle Makinen

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Auburn University has announced two significant additions to its swimming roster for the 2022-23 season, bringing in Louisville transfer Polina Nevmovenko on the women’s side and Finnish sprinter Kalle Makinen for the men.

Nevmovenko was an ‘A’ finalist in the women’s 200 freestyle last season for Louisville at the ACC Championships, clocking a time of 1:46.23 in the prelims, and also established an NCAA ‘B’ cut in the 500 free (4:45.08).

The NCAA cutline last season in the 200 free was 1:45.42.

The Russian native was also a finalist in the 200 free at the 2019 World Junior Championships, placing seventh overall.

She joins Auburn with three seasons of eligibility remaining.

Nevmovenko’s SCY Best Times (LCM)

  • 100 free – 50.01 (56.01)
  • 200 free – 1:46.23 (1:58.94)
  • 500 free – 4:45.08 (4:14.02 400 free)

Makinen joins the Tiger men with an impressive resume in both sprint freestyle and backstroke, including breaking the Finish National Records in the 50 back (23.87) and 100 back (52.03) in short course meters in December 2021.

Makinen’s SCM Best Times (SCY conversions)

  • 50 free – 21.45 (19.32)
  • 100 free – 47.75 (43.01)
  • 200 free – 1:49.79 (1:38.90)
  • 50 back – 23.87 (21.50)
  • 100 back – 52.03 (46.87)
  • 50 fly – 23.18 (20.88)


Courtesy: Auburn Athletics

AUBURN, Ala. – The Auburn swimming and diving team continued to improve its roster for the 2022-23 season with the addition of two international signings, Kalle Makinen from Finland and Polina Nevmovenko from Russia.

Makinen joins the men’s team as a sprint freestyle and backstroke specialist. In December, he won five gold medals at the Finnish Short Track Swimming Championships and set Finnish records in the 50 and 100-meter backstroke – going 52.03 in the 100 back. His best times in the 50 and 100 free (short course meters) are 21.45 and 47.75.

Nevmovenko comes to Auburn as a transfer from Louisville where she swam one season. The Russian native finished eighth in the 200 freestyle at the ACC Championships, setting a career-best time of 1:46.23, and swam on the 800 freestyle relay, which took third at the same meet. She earned NCAA B cuts in the 200 free and 500 free (4:45.08).

In December 2020, Nevmovenko finished fifth in the 200 and 400-meter freestyle at the Russian Short Course Championships with career best SCM times of 1:56.43 and 4:07.30.

Makinen and Nevmovenko join a signing class that already includes four other international signees from Egypt, Germany, Russia and Uruguay. In January, Auburn added mid-year enrollees Anastasia Makarova (Russia) and Lewis Treggiden (Australia).


Kalle Makinen

  • Hometown: Espoo, Finland
  • Club Team: Finnish National Team
  • Stroke: Sprint Free/Backstroke

Polina Nevmovenko

  • Hometown: Saint Petersburg, Russia
  • Previous School: University of Louisville
  • Club Team: Russian National Team
  • Stroke: Middle Distance Freestyle

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1 month ago

The Waca-Waco-Wacu syndrome is getting the Tigers revved to do great things!

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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