Tar Heels Bring In 10 Women and Four Men For 2017 Season

by SwimSwam 6

November 28th, 2016 ACC, College

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – University of North Carolina head swimming coach Rich DeSelm has announced an outstanding group of future student-athletes who have signed National Letters of Intent to attend Carolina beginning in August 2017.  This group includes 10 women and four men signees who signed their letters in the early signing period earlier in November.

Following are details on this year’s class.  The Tar Heels will also announce additional recruits during the spring signing period.


Sydney Baker
Club Team: Y Spartaquatics Swim Club/ Club Coach: Ted Pierson
High School: Christ Church Episcopal School/ High School Coach: Park Owings
“I am so excited to be a part of the class of 2021 at UNC,” says Baker.  “I chose the school because of the excellent academics, awesome swim program and the welcoming team. I can’t wait to spend the next four years as a Tar Heel.”
Career Best Times
200 yard breaststroke – 2:12.57; 100 yard breaststroke – 1:02.14; 400 yard individual medley – 4:18.68;  200 yard individual medley – 2:01.03
“Sydney is an outstanding addition for UNC,” says Tar Heel head coach Rich DeSelm.  “She is a diamond in the rough, as she has been highly successful at Y Spartaquatics for coach Ted Pierson. Her potential is only beginning to unfold. Sydney was directed in her college search, limiting it to very few schools and our staff and team are thrilled that she chose UNC.”

Emma Cole, Marietta, Ga,
Club Team: Chattahoochee Gold/ Club Coach: Pat Murphy
High School: Walton High School/ High School Coach: Sharon Loughran
“I chose UNC because of the outstanding academics and opportunities it offers,” says Cole.  “I also loved the people and the team atmosphere was exactly what I was looking for. I am very excited to be a Tar Heel.”
Career Best Times
Short Course:  50 yard freestyle – 23.13;  100 yard freestyle – 49.86;  200 yard freestyle – 1:47.03;  50 yard butterfly – 25.01;  100 yard butterfly – 54.82;  200 yard butterfly – 1:59.08.
Long Course:  50 meter freestyle – 26.47;  100 meter freestyle – 56.23;  200 meter freestyle – 2:02.09;  50 meter butterfly – 28.11;  100 meter butterfly – 1:04.29;  200 meter butterfly – 2:15.86.
“We have known Emma for many years as both her parents, Cameron and Melissa (Douse) Cole were part of UNC swimming’s ACC Championship winning dynasty in the late 1980s and early 1990s,” says Tar Heel head coach Rich DeSelm.  “Emma brings intensity and speed in the mid-distance freestyle events.  Already proven as a great 200 freestyle performer, she will be a major contributor both individually and on relays. She is the consummate Tar Heel athlete, diligent in both her athletics and academics. However, she also brings the intangibles of passion for winning and excellent leadership skills to the table.  We are truly excited to welcome her to the UNC swimming legacy.”

Emma McPeeters
“Being a part of the UNC diving team is a great honor. The divers at UNC strive for excellence in the student-athlete experience, in and out of the pool, which is the reason why I choose to be a Tar Heel,” says McPeeters
Diving Accomplishments:  Received 3rd place at states in 2014.  National Qualifier on platform in 2015 and 2016.  Received 4th place in 2016 on platform at AAU Nationals. Received the sportsmanship award from Page High School in 2014 and 2016. Was named as team captain for the Page High School Diving team in 2016.
“Emma is a local diver from Greensboro. She’s powerful and athletic which makes a great combination for diving,” says UNC diving coach Abel Sanchez.  “I’ve been watching her compete for several years and I believe she will make great strides once competing at a high level. Her work ethic is what drew me to her and I’m excited to see the diver that Emma becomes.”

Caroline Hauder
Club Team: SwimMAC Carolina / Club Coach: Peter Verhoef
High School: Marvin Ridge High School / High School Coach: Melissa King-Pierce
“UNC has the perfect combination of an incredible swimming and diving program and highly reputable academics,” says Hauder.  “I know that the coaching staff will help me reach all of my swimming goals and that academically I will get the opportunity to earn a degree at one of the best public universities in the nation. I truly cannot wait to be a part of the class of 2021 and experience all that Chapel Hill has to offer.”
Career Best Times
Short Course:  1:01.13 in 100 yard breaststroke;  2:14.59 in 200 yard breaststroke;  1:58.85 in 200 yard individual medley;  55.50 in 100 yard backstroke;  1:57.60 in 200 yard backstroke;  23.52 in 50 yard freestyle.
Long Course:  1:11.40 in 100 meter breaststroke;  2:37.57 in 200 meter breaststroke;  2:16.86 in 200 meter individual medley;  1:03.48 in 100 meter backstroke;  2:20.88 in 200 meter backstroke;  26.88 in 50 meter freestyle.
“Caroline visited UNC as a junior.  She was methodical and meticulous in her college search and, ultimately, made an early commitment,” says Carolina head coach Rich DeSelm.  “We are thrilled to have her joining us. She is, arguably, the number one recruit in her class from North Carolina and one of the top prospects nationally. Caroline is from Charlotte, competes for SwimMAC and has thrived under her coach, Peter Verhoef. We have had a long history of swimmers from her club team coming to UNC and are excited to have such a talented and versatile student-athlete joining us in Chapel Hill.”

Taylor Hockenberry, Evans City, Pa.
“I chose UNC because it instantly felt like home and a place where I can thrive athletically and academically,” says Taylor Hockenberry.
Diving Accomplishments:  Taylor has had a successful high school career winning the last two years’ regional, district and state meets. She was voted as the MVP for Mars High School the past three years. Taylor also set new conference and district records, earning NISCA girls one-meter All- America honors. Taylor’s club team is PITT Aquatic Club coached by Doe & Julian Krug. During the summers, Taylor has advanced to USA Diving JO Zones and Nationals.
“Taylor is relatively new to the sport of diving, however, she brings a ton of experience from gymnastics. She is strong and versatile and will make an immediate impact her freshman year,” says UNC diving coach Abel Sanchez.  “We believe Taylor’s talent and work ethic will help UNC continue to raise our level at the ACC and NCAA level.”

Emma Layton, Johns Creek, Ga.

Club Team: Dynamo Swim Club / Club Coach: Rich Murphy
High School: Chattahoochee High School/ High School Coach:  Ronald Loula
“I am so happy to announce that I have committed to swim for the University of North Carolina,” says Layton.  “The academics, team dynamic and amazing staff are everything I could hope for and more. I loved how I felt right at home with people I had only just met. As soon as I stepped on campus I knew it was the perfect place for me and I can’t wait to spend the next four years in North Carolina.”
Career Best Times
Short Course:  16:29.34 in 1650 yard freestyle;  9:58.86 in 1000 yard freestyle;  4:48.97 in 500 yard freestyle;  1:48.83 in 200 yard freestyle.
Long Course:  16:58.44 in 1500 meter freestyle;  8:51.29 in 800 meter freestyle;  4:20.10 in 400 meter freestyle;  2:03.70 in 200 meter freestyle.
“From the beginning, Emma was someone that we wanted to recruit.  Upon meeting her, it was clear that she was a perfect fit from our perspective,” says UNC head coach Rich DeSelm.  “She is exactly what you hope to recruit, a great athlete who has a strong desire to attend your institution.  She is a fierce competitor and loyal teammate who is willing to do the work to drive her performance, a character trait that she learned at Dynamo Swim Club.  Her coach Rich Murphy stated that she was a tough trainer with a great attitude and undeveloped potential.  We are excited for her to join our distance group in the fall and realize her full potential as a Tar Heel.”

Brooke Perrotta, Higganum, Conn.
Club Team: Cheshire Y Sea Dogs / Club Coach: Sean Farrell
High School: Haddam-Killingworth High School / High School Coach: Jon MacDonald
“I chose the University of North Carolina because of all the great opportunities the school has to offer. Not only does UNC have a fantastic academic program, but also a great, dedicated swimming team,” says Perrotta.  “I felt so welcomed by all of the coaching staff and athletes. The enthusiasm and school spirit cannot be matched. Right when I stepped foot on campus, I felt at home. I can’t wait to be a Tar Heel.”
Career Best Times
Short Course:  51.04 in 100 yard freestyle;  1:49.96 in 200 yard freestyle;  54.33 in 100 yard butterfly;  1:59.94 in 200 yard butterfly;  1:01.73 in 100 yard breaststroke;  2:20.26 in 200 yard breaststroke;  2:01.90 in 200 yard individual medley;  4:21.16 in 400 yard individual medley.
Long Course:  57.82 in 100 meter freestyle;  2:07.27 in 200 meter freestyle;  1:01.76 in 100 meter butterfly;  2:15.93 in 200 meter butterfly;  1:12.86 in 100 meter breaststroke;  2:45.66 in 200 meter breaststroke;  2:19.78 in 200 meter individual medley;  5:00.96 in 400 meter individual medley.
“Brooke is a versatile performer in her events and a very talented swimmer,” says UNC head coach Rich DeSelm.  “We are glad that she has committed to UNC and we are eager to add her to our dual meet and championship meet roster.   She has shown tenacity, dedication and perseverance in her development thus far.  Armed with those qualities, she is primed to maximize her athletic potential in her career at UNC.  She will make a tremendous contribution to the team both with her work ethic and her enthusiasm.  We are excited to see what is in store for her as a Tar Heel.”

Allie Reiter, Dunwoody, Ga.
Club Team: Dynamo / Club Coach: Jason Turcotte
High School: Dunwoody High School / High School Coach: Corky Gibbons
“I am beyond excited to announce my commitment to the University of North Carolina,” Reiter says.  “I’m thrilled to be a part of such an amazing swimming and academic program.  I can’t wait to be a Tar Heel.”
Career Best Times:  30.70 in 50 yard breaststroke;  1:02.68 in 100 yard breaststroke;  2:19.75 in 200 yard breaststroke;  2:05.59 in 200 yard individual medley;  4:31.78 in 400 yard individual medley.
“Allie’s coach, Jason Turcotte of Dynamo Swim Club, has a tremendous respect for Allie’s talent, dedication and positivity. And so do we,” says Tar Heel head coach Rich DeSelm.  “It was clear in the recruiting process that she has the tools and passion to develop her potential into a very tough and competitive swimmer. We are ecstatic to have her become a Tar Heel.”

Maddie Smith, Lake Forest, Ill.
Club Team: Patriot Aquatic Club Club Coach: Kevin Zakrzewski
High School: Lake Forest High School High School Coach: Carolyn Greevers
“I chose UNC because of the amazing balance between academics and athletics,” says Smith. “I fell in love with the coaches, the team and the school and I know it is the best place for me to grow as a student, an athlete and a person. I can’t wait to be a part of the Tar Heel family.”
Career Best Times
Short Course:  23.11 in 50 yard freestyle;  50.19 in 100 yard freestyle;  1:51.05 in 200 yard freestyle
Long Course:  26.23 in 50 meter freestyle;  57.07 in 100 meter freestyle
“We are adding to our sprint corps with Maddie Smith.  She has already excelled on a USA Swimming stage,” says North Carolina’s DeSelm.  “However, it is evident that there is far more natural speed to develop.  We are excited to help her exceed her goals.  She is the rare balance of a truly outstanding student and naturally talented swimmer with a strong work ethic.  Maddie likely could have gone to any school she chose, so we are honored that she chose to become a Tar Heel.  We believe that Maddie will be a key contributor in both a dual meet and championship setting.  We can’t wait to see how much stronger and faster she will become as a Tar Heel.”

Mary-O Soule, Asheville, N.C.
Club Team: Asheville Swim Club/ Club Coach: Alan Barry
High School: TC Roberson/ High School Coach: Jim Cottam
“I am thrilled to announce my commitment to swim at the University of North Carolina,” Soule comments. “I chose UNC because of the outstanding swimming team, coaches and academics. I can’t wait to be a Tar Heel.”
Career Best Times
Short Course:  55.37 in 100 yard butterfly; 1:59.37 in 200 yard butterfly;  2:05.00 in 200 yard individual medley;  4:15.64 in 400 yard individual medley.
Long Course:  1:02.87 in 100 meter butterfly;  2:15.30 in 200 meter butterfly;  2:21.79 in 200 meter individual medley;  4:53.54 in 400 meter individual medley.
“Mary-O, was also one of the top recruits in North Carolina.  She was resolute in her search and driven to carver her path to her college decision, wherever that led,” says the Tar Heels’ Rich DeSelm.  “She visited in the spring and immediately meshed with the team.  After her official visit here, we all knew that coming to UNC was what we wanted. Her coach, Alan Barry, said that she was a great trainer and teammate. Her love of the sport and her enthusiasm seems infectious.  We love the way she races, both during heavy training and tapered, but more importantly she has a great positive attitude and great energy.  She is an awesome addition in the pool and out.”


Dimitris Dimtriou,  Athens, Greece
Athens University of Economics & Business
Home Coaches: Dimitris Athimaritis, Vaggelis Kozobolis & Alexandros Nikolopoulos
“I chose UNC because it is one of the most outstanding universities in the country and it has one of the best swimming teams,” Dimtriou says.  “I strongly believe that studying at UNC can help me develop myself academically and as an athlete. I can’t wait to join the team.”
Career Best Times
Long Course:  52.24 in 100 meter freestyle;  1:49.80 in 200 meter freestyle;  3:50.81 in 400 meter freestyle;  8:14.14 in 800 meter freestyle
“Dimitris contacted us looking for a great school to pursue his degree at and to swim,” says UNC head coach Rich DeSelm.  “We are excited to bring to UNC someone of his talent. He competes at an international level and is showing a rapid rate of improvement. This past summer, Dimitris represented Greece in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, swimming the 400-meter freestyle.”

Greg Duncan, Oakton, Va.
Diving Accomplishments:  A relative new force on the diving scene. He made finals on one-meter and three-meter springboard last year at the USA Diving AT&T Summer nationals placing fifth and 10th. This past summer Greg captured two silver medals on one-meter and three-meter springboards at the 2016 USA Diving AT&T Summer Nationals for the 16-18 age-group. His silver medals earned him a spot on the FINA Junior World Championship Team, competing in December 2017 in Kazan, Russia. Greg also competed in the 2016 USA Diving Olympic Trials. He is also a two-time All-America, 6A North All-Region Swim/Dive first-team member and a runner up to the state champion in 15-16.
“Greg was sought after by every school in the country,” says Tar Heel diving coach Abel Sanchez.  “He’s one of the top three junior divers in the country and is representing the USA Junior National team at the FINA World Junior Diving Championships in Kazan, Russia. Only two men were selected to compete on three-meter and Greg will be one of those divers. What I like most about Greg is his work ethic and ability to keep improving.”

Alvin Jiang, Colleyville, Texas
Club Team: Lakeside Aquatic Club / Club Coach: Jason Walter

High School: Cistercian Preparatory School/High School Coach:  Jeff Veazey
“I chose UNC because it is a top academic and athletic institution and the team and coaches are extremely motivated to work hard and succeed,” says Jiang.
Career Best Times

Short Course:  20.69 in 50 yard freestyle; 46.21 in 100 yard freestyle; 49.60 in 100 yard backstroke;  47.81 in 100 yard butterfly

“We worked hard to get Alvin’s attention and are glad he will join us at UNC next fall,” says UNC head coach Rich DeSelm.  “Alvin has some great skills and is going to continue to improve this year and throughout college. We believe Alvin’s talent and work ethic will help him continue to rise at the ACC and NCAA level. He is a great student and will thrive academically here. We will be counting on Alvin to excel in and out of the pool.”

Chris Thames,  Dunwoody, Ga.

Club Team: Metro Atlanta Aquatic Club / Club Coach: Mike Norment

High School Dunwoody High School /High School Coach Corky Gibbons

”I chose UNC because of the coaching and the history of academic success,” says Thames.

Career Best Times

Short Course:  1:42.39 in 200 yard freestyle;  49.63 in 100 yard backstroke;  1:46.02 in 200 yard backstroke;  51.58 in 100 yard butterfly
“Chris also has some fabulous skills and a great feel for the water. He and coach Michael Norment have developed a great plan for the remainder of his high school and club careers and we are eager to see him continue to improve,” says Carolina’s DeSelm.  “We believe Chris is just touching his ability and that, at UNC, with strength gains and competing on a high level in practice he will swim at a very high level.”

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7 years ago

Solid recruit class

7 years ago

Good solid class on the women side! Hauder is great catch!

Men side is okay… Dimitris will contribute at the ACC and NCAA level immediately! Tar Heels need some SPRINTERS to hang with the red school in Raleigh!

Chester Copperpot
Reply to  swimfan
7 years ago

3 swimmers…

A cold piece of pumpkin pie
7 years ago

Some nice pieces, but Jesus UNC needs to a do a little more than this. I feel like they are coming to a gun fight with some small knives, Forget the powers of NC State and Louisville, the second tier of ACC schools like UVA Notre dame Georgia tech and Florida state seem to be running away from the Tar Heels. Maybe they will enjoy some fun duel meets with Pitt and Boston college

Reply to  A cold piece of pumpkin pie
7 years ago

It’s obvious to everyone but the athletic director. UNC men are getting left behind…quickly.

Have they even reached out to Yuri? Highly doubtful

Reply to  A cold piece of pumpkin pie
7 years ago

If you can’t say something nice…..