Pool/Open Water Specialist MaKayla Ciancanelli Verbals to South Carolina

by Matthew Harder 2

September 20th, 2021 College, College Recruiting, News, SEC

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MaKayla Ciancanelli has verbally committed to swim at the University of South Carolina starting in the fall of 2022. Ciancanelli is primarily a freestyler, but also dazzles in fly, IM, and the open water events.

“I am so excited and beyond humbled to announce my verbal commitment to continue my academic and athletic careers at the University of South Carolina. I would like to first give thanks and praise to Jesus Christ for allowing me the opportunity to bring Him glory through the sport of swimming. Thank you to every family member, coach, teammate, and friend who helped me reach this point. And finally, thank you to the USC staff for believing in me and allowing me this opportunity. I cannot wait to join the Gamecock family! Spurs up! #forevertothee #welcomehome 🤙🏼❤️🐔”

Ciancanelli lives in Raleigh, North Carolina and trains year-round with the Marlins of Raleigh. Ciancanelli has USA Swimming Futures cuts in the 500 free/1650 free/200 fly in SCY, and has the 200 free/1500 free/200 fly/200 IM cuts in LCM.

Most recently, Ciancanelli competed at the 2021 Futures Championships in Huntsville and swam five individual events and 2 relays. She notched a new best times in the 400 free (4:26.08) which earned her a spot in the finals.

Ciancanelli competes with the North Raleigh Christian Academy during her high school season. She’s a four-time NCISAA individual state champion, having won the 500 free her freshman year, the 200 free her sophomore year, and both events during her junior season.

Her best times (SCY) include:

  • 200 free – 1:50.19
  • 500 free – 4:57.97
  • 1000 free – 10:17.79
  • 1650 free – 17:07.03
  • 200 fly – 2:03.21

Ciancanelli also excels in the open water events and has qualified for the USA Swimming Open Water Junior Nationals. At the 2021 Junior Nationals in March, she placed ninth in the women’s 7.5k race. At the LSC level, she has represented North Carolina at several Southern Zones competitions, including this summer when she won the 5k event in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

While she’s not in scoring contention at the SEC-level as a rising senior, her progression rate sets her up to have a great collegiate career at South Carolina.

South Carolina finished 11th out of 12 teams with 276 points at the 2021 Women’s SEC Swimming and Diving Championships. South Carolina recently hired Jeff Poppell, former women’s head coach at the University of Florida, as their new head coach.

Riordan joins recent commits Claire Dafoe, Sterling Burd, and Meaghan Harnish as members of the incoming class of 2026.

If you have a commitment to report, please send an email with a photo (landscape, or horizontal, looks best) and a quote to [email protected].

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1 year ago

Horray MaKayla!

Last edited 1 year ago by ben
Swim Fan
1 year ago

South Carolina is going to be a program on the move!