Backstroker Sofia Matern To Stay In-State With Ohio University (2024)

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Sofia Matern has announced her verbal commitment to further her education and swimming career at Ohio University. Matern’s decision keeps her in-state, as she’s currently a senior at Walnut Hills High School in Cincinnati. 

Matern trains and competes year-round with the Mason Manta Rays, which is a Gold Medal club under USA Swimming’s Club Excellence program. She’s versatile in terms of stroke speciality, as she swims a mix of IM, backstroke, and breaststroke.

She ended her 2023 long course season at the ISCA Summer Blast, where she notched personal best times in two of her events. In the 200m back, she knocked off two seconds en route to an 11th place finish (2:22.53), while in the 400m free she dropped nearly two seconds for a 4:40.20, also good for 11th. 

Highlighting her short course season was the Ohio Spring Senior Invite. She finished as high as 3rd in the 200 backstroke, where she dropped almost five seconds to post a 2:02.55. She also cracked the top-8 in the 100 breast (1:06.47), 400 IM (4:35.85), and 500 free (5:06.20), with her 500 marking a new personal best. 

Top SCY Times:

  • 100 back – 56.36
  • 200 back – 2:02.55
  • 100 breast – 1:05.71
  • 200 breast – 2:23.10
  • 200 IM – 2:06.36
  • 400 IM – 4:34.96

Led by head coach Mason Norman, Ohio University finished 4th out of 8 teams at the 2023 Mid-American Conference (MAC) Championships. Matern should make an immediate impact for Ohio at the conference level, as her current best time in the 200 backstroke would have landed her in the B-final this past season.

Ohio’s top finisher in the event at the 2023 MAC Championships was Athena Aravantinou, who finished 7th with a 2:00.17 in finals. Riley Bunstine also scored, as she took 10th out of the B-final in 1:58.87. Neither will be on campus next fall, leaving  behind a gap in the event that Matern can help fill.

Matern joins Melissa Blaine, Leah Guess, Jordan Claypoole, and Darby Murlin in Ohio’s class of 2028. The majority of the class are Ohio natives, with Claypoole and Blaine coming from out of state.

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