NOVA Breaststroker Sarah Bender Adds To Large Class of 2024 For Notre Dame

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Sarah Bender, a junior at Freeman High School and NOVA of Virginia Aquatics in Richmond, Virginia has made her college decision early, choosing to swim for Notre Dame in the fall of 2020. A fairly balanced IM specialist, Bender already has a career-best time in the 400 yard IM that is good enough for an NCAA ‘B’ cut. She is also .15 seconds off of the 200-yard breaststroke ‘B’ cut and 1.56 seconds off the ‘B’ cut for the 200 yard IM.

“I’m so excited to announce my commitment to swim and study at the University of Notre Dame! Thank you so much to my family, friends, and coaches for always supporting me. I cannot wait to be part of such an amazing team! GO IRISH!!! ☘️”

At the 2019 Virginia High School 5A State Championships she took home a pair of bronze medals in the 100 and 200-yard freestyles (51.65/1:51.56). Two weeks later she participated in the Virginia Swimming Senior Championships where she won the 200-yard breaststroke (2:14.12), took 3rd place in the 200 yard IM (2:03.26), and 5th place in the 100-yard breaststroke (1:03.12).

Best Times in Yards:

  • 200 back – 1:59.16
  • 200 breast – 2:14.12
  • 200 free – 1:50.08
  • 200 IM – 2:01.50
  • 400 IM – 4:16.80

Bender would have had the 2nd fastest times on the 2018-2019 team in the 200-yard breaststroke and 400 yard IM, behind seniors Meaghan O’Donnell and Nikki Smith respectively. She will be the sole breaststroker/IMer of the class of 2024, joining Allison Kopac, Kallie Chelsvig, Megan Deuel, Peyton D’Emanuele, Sydney Whiting, Rhianna Hensler, and Emma Gleason.

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