The Georgia Bulldogs have repeated as women’s Division I NCAA Champions, overcoming Stanford and Cal to win with 528 points. The repeat feat was made more impressive by the graduations Georgia weathered after last season, most notably freestylers Megan Romano and Allison Schmitt.
But Georgia reloaded in a big way, winning the title with outstanding depth and getting 5 individual NCAA titles. Two apiece came from freestyle sensation Brittany MacLean and diving stud Laura Ryan. MacLean, a sophomore, won an insane battle with Cal’s Missy Franklin in the 500 and also took the 1650, while Ryan, a native Minnesotan, won both 1-meter and 3-meter diving in front of her home-state crowd to close out her senior season. Freshman Olivia Smoliga added a 50 free national title for the Bulldogs.
Every championship is a team effort – even the swimmers who weren’t on the SEC or NCAA team had a hand in this title, and the entire squad will be getting their well-deserved championship rings for the 2014 season. Here is the full Bulldog roster as it appears on the Georgia athletic site:
|Elizabeth Ann Kirkland||FR|
|Chantal Van Landeghem||SO|
SwimSwam would also like to congratulate the Georgia coaching staff: head coach Jack Bauerle, acting coach Harvey Humphries, diving coach Dan Laak, Associate head coach Jerry Champer and Brian Smith and assistant coach Stefanie Williams.