HOUSTON – Two more signees have officially joined the Rice swim team upcoming season, bringing the final 2015-2016 newcomer total to six, Owl head coach Seth Huston announced on Tuesday (June 9).
Rice initially signed four prep standouts last winter. The two new signees are Dani Gordon of Saint Johns, Fla., and Tara Martin of Holly Springs, N.C.
Martin helped lead Raleigh Charter High School to four state titles swimming the butterfly and freestyle sprints. In addition to competing individually at the 2014 U.S. Winter Nationals, Martin is the No. 11 ranked senior in the state. She is also an outstanding student who was named a two-time USA Swimming Academic All-America and National Merit Scholar.
Gordon is a veteran club competitor of for Florida’s Loggerhead Aquatics. As a senior at Creekside High School she won the 3A individual state championship in the 100-breaststroke, and was also a member of the school’s title-winning 200-medley relay. Not only is Gordon among the Top 40 prep swimmers in the talent-rich state of Florida, she is a Scholastic All-America honoree.
Coach Huston had high praise for the newest Owls. The duo’s diverse skill-set may now have raised the program’s already solid incoming group to an even higher level.
“Signing Tara and Dani in the spring has completed a top-notch recruiting class,” coach Huston said. “Dani gets a second chance after Western Kentucky University suspended its program and I believe Rice is going to be a great fit for her. She has so much upside and potential in the breaststroke events, a place in which we needed to reload. On top of that Dani will bring a high level of commitment and focus to her training and to the team.”
“Tara found her niche on our smaller, more intimate campus,” coach Huston added. “After visiting some large universities in the fall and not finding a compatible school, she did some research and found Rice to be more to her liking. Tara is going to be a big help in the fly and freestyle events. She has an incredible focus and desire to succeed. I think Tara’s best swimming is ahead of her in college.”
The newest Owls join the early list of signees, a group that consisted of Sydney Franzen of San Clemente, Calif., Hanna Huston of Katy, Texas, Marie-Claire Schillinger of Orinda, Calif., and Rabea Tzenetos of Essen, Germany. Rice’s 2015-2016 swim season begins in October.
Swimming news courtesy of Rice Swimming and Diving.