Three-Time YMCA National Champion Alyssa Arwood Verbally Commits to Duke

Alyssa Arwood from the YMCA of Western North Carolina (WNCY) has verbally committed to the Duke Blue Devils.

She won three YMCA National Championships in 2014: the 50 and 100 meter races, plus the 100 yard breaststroke from Short Course Nationals in the spring.

Her rise to the top of the YMCA scene as a junior was a little out-of-the-blue. In the 2013-2014 season alone, she made the following improvements in the breaststroke races:

  • 100 yard breast – 1:05.30 to 1:01.44
  • 200 yard breast – 2:21.11 to 2:16.02
  • 100 meter breast – 1:18.00 to 1:11.68
  • 50 meter breast – 36.67 to 32.72 (YMCA Nationals Meet Record)

Arwood has also been 23.77 in the 50 yard freestyle, showing the potential to contribute to Duke there as well -a spot where she’s trying to improve upon as a senior.

Duke graduated all-conference breaststroker Christine Wixted after last season, but have two talented young swimmers in Ashleigh Shanley (1:03.91 – sophomore) and Abby Artmann (1:02.58). Arwood, though, is faster than either of them coming out of high school.

Arwood swims scholastically at TC Roberson High School, and trains under Kirk Hampleman at WNCY.

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Those are significant time drops in one year! Makes you wonder if she still has more in her or has she peaked????


Congratulations, Alyssa! Her parents, both NCAA All-Americans at Emory, were teammates of mine. Her dad was the first 4-year Individual-event All-American in any sport at Emory, as a breaststroke swimmer. He came in as a 1:08+ breaststroker, and was well under 1:00 by the end of his freshman year. Her mom was one of the most versatile swimmers in her time at Emory, competing at NCAA’s in events as varied as the 500 free, 200IM, backstroke in the medleys, and sprint free in the relays. If genetics is an indicator, Alyssa has much more improvement in her! They are a great family, and I couldn’t be prouder of them.

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Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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