Villanova Women’s Swimming & Diving Inks 11 National Letters of Intent

by SwimSwam 5

November 23rd, 2022 College, College Recruiting, News

Courtesy: Villanova Athletics

VILLANOVA, Pa. – Villanova Swimming & Diving coach Rick Simpson announced the signing of 11 student-athletes to National Letters of Intent to the women’s program.

“Villanova Swimming and Diving is thrilled and excited to welcome such a great group of women,” head coach Rick Simpson said. “Not only are these athletes immediate impact performers, but they also understand the Villanova way and the importance of recruiting ‘character first’. It will be a class that will certainly make its mark in the pool and on the boards, but more importantly, will make an impact on the university as a whole.”

The group comprised of eight swimmers and three divers is set to join the Wildcats in the 2023-24 season.

Marlene Blanke | Kleinmachnow, Germany | Sportgymnasium Magdeburg
Junior Open Water World’s Championship Runner-Up
Blanke was a runner-up at the Junior Open Water World’s Championship on the 4 x 1.5 km relay. The freestyle swimmer chose Villanova because of the academic and athletic opportunities and how she found that the swimming and diving team truly cares about one another.

200 Free – 2:03.60 (LCM) / 1:48.46 (SCY)
400/500 Free – 4:19.51 (LCM) / 4:50.76 (SCY)
800/1000 Free – 8:56.77 (LCM) / 10:01.42 (SCY)
1500/1650 Free – 16:36.63 (SCM) – 16:30.68 (SCY)

Carlota Colomer | Sant Feliu de Llobregat, Barcelona | IES CAR de Sant Cugat
Junior Spanish and Junior Catalan Champion
Colomer collected Junior Spanish Champion titles in both the 100 and 200 Breast in 2022 where she was also runner-up in the 50 Free and 200 IM. She also earned Junior Catalan Champion status in the 100 Breast, 100 Free and both the 200 and 400 IM while finishing second in the 200 Breast and 50 Free. She says she chose Villanova for the welcoming atmosphere she felt from first meeting both the coaching staff and team and believes Villanova will feel like home.

100 Breast – 1:10.38 (LCM) / 1:01.60 (SCY)
200 Breast – 2:34.73 (LCM) / 2:15.79 (SCY)
200 IM – 2:20.71 (LCM) / 2:03.88 (SCY)
100 Free – 58.09 (LCM) / 50.89 (SCY)

Martina Lonati | Guglionesi, Italy | Liceo Classico Gennaro Perrotta
400 Free Winner at the Italian Championship
Lonati won the 400 Free at the 2019 Italian Championship where she also finished second in the 800 Free. She chose Villanova because of the immediate home feel, how the coaching staff and team made her feel welcomed and getting the chance to study and swim at this level.

100 Fly – 1:01.34 (LCM) / 54.00 (SCY)
200 Fly – 2:17.17 (LCM) / 2:01.05 (SCY)
200 Free – 2:02.21 (SCM) /1:50.09 (SCY)
400/500 Free – 4:15.21 (SCM) / 4:51.66 (SCY)

Meghan Tiernan | West Hartford, Conn. | Hall HS
YMCA Nationals Finalist and USA Swimming Junior National Qualifier
Tiernan has seen success in her high school career as both a YMCA Nationals Finalist and a USA Swimming Junior National Qualifier.

400 IM – 4:24.08
200 IM – 2:02.47
200 Fly – 2:03.53
500 Free – 4:55.13

Alyssa McHale | Haddonfield, N.J. | Haddonfield Memorial HS
50 Free All-American
McHale has proven to be a strong sprint performer, earning All-American status in the 50 Free. She follows in her mother’s footsteps by signing to become a Wildcat. The former Tammy Kouser, Class of 1996, was inducted into the Villanova Varsity Club Hall of Fame in 2014. During her time with Villanova, she earned All-American status in the 200 and 400 Freestyle Relay and the 200 and 400 Medley Relay while also winning three individual BIG EAST titles and swimming in 14 championship relays. Alyssa McHale chose Villanova for its great academics, athletics, sense of community and the team dynamic.
50 Free – 23.42
100 Free – 51.39
100 Fly – 55.32
100 Back – 57.90

Peri Gaguzis | Cranberry Township, Pa. | Seneca Valley HS
Junior National Qualifier and USA Swimming Futures Medalist
Gaguzis has been a qualifier at Junior Nationals and was a USA Swimming Futures medalist. The distance swimmer says she chose Villanova for its incredible team, palpable school spirit and high-caliber academic programs.
400 IM – 4:58.56 (LCM) /4:23.20 (SCY)
1000 Free – 10:24.51
200 IM – 2:06.96
500 Free – 5:02.06

Anna Farley | Edina, Minn. | Visitation HS
Two-time individual state champion and three-time team state champion
Farley was a part of successful teams at Visitation High School, winning the state championship three times with the squad. As an individual, the distance swimmer won the state crown twice. She says she chose Villanova for the incredible coaching staff, family-like culture on the swim team and the top-tier academics.
400 IM – 4:25.24
200 IM – 2:04.39
1000 Free – 10:23.11
500 Free – 5:03.40

Kathryn Montefusco | Huntington, N.Y. | Huntington HS
NCSA Finalist and four-time NY All-State High School Swim Team recognition
Monte was an NCSA Finalist at the 2022 Summer Swimming Championships and has been recognized as a part of the New York All-State High School Swim Team four times in her career. She says she chose Villanova because of its highly regarded academic and athletic programs. She also noted the family atmosphere she felt on campus and the close-knit feel of the swim team.
400 IM – 4:26.98
200 Free – 1:52.10
200 Breast – 2:18.89
100 Breast – 1:04.71

Michelle Kasulka | Chappaqua, N.Y. | Horace Greeley HS
USA Diving Zone A Championships competitor
Kasulka placed sixth at the AAU Nationals and competed at the USA Diving Zone A Championships. She chose Villanova because of its welcoming team environment, strong academics and beautiful campus.

Katie Vaughan | Fairfax, Va. | Oakton HS
2022 Virginia Class 6 All-Region and All-District Diver
Vaughan proved to be a top-tier diver in the 2022 season, earning Virginia Class 6 All-Region and All-District status. She says she chose Villanova because of its fantastic academic reputation and the real sense of community she felt when meeting the coaches and student-athletes.

Meghan Scott | Hulmeville, Pa. | Nazareth Academy HS
USA Diving All-Region Competitor
Scott comes to the Main Line as a USA Diving All-Region competitor. She says she chose Villanova for its academic reputation and athletic excellence, but also liked the overall atmosphere of the school and how quickly the campus felt like home.

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Former Big10
1 day ago

looks like it could be a program changing class. solid depth, good top end

2 days ago

Now time to step up men’s recruiting

Reply to  Xavier24
1 day ago

They have time standards for male recruits that far exceed the current team quality and the appeal of paying 80k a year to swim on a subpar team. Not sure why they don’t figure out a better plan.

To be fair
Reply to  Xavier24
1 day ago

To be fair, its a non scholarship men’s program and fully funded women’s program. They do pretty well with Men’s recruiting considering the cost of attendance.

Last edited 1 day ago by To be fair
Reply to  To be fair
1 day ago

They should look for incremental growth with those costs. Build gradually.