Virginia Ties North Carolina with 16th ACC Women’s Swimming & Diving Title

Braden Keith
by Braden Keith 2

February 22nd, 2020 ACC, College, News


  • When: Wednesday, February 19th to Saturday, February 22nd | Prelims 10:00 am | Finals 6:00 pm (1650 prelims Saturday at 4:00 pm)
  • Where: Greensboro Aquatic Center, Greensboro, North Carolina (Eastern Time Zone)
  • Defending Champion: North Carolina State University (NC State) (1x) (results)
  • Streaming: ACC Network
  • Championship Central: Here
  • Detailed Timeline: Here
  • Psych Sheets: Here
  • Live Results
  • Saturday Finals Heat Sheet

The Virginia Cavaliers on Saturday sealed up their 16th ACC Women’s Swimming & Diving Championship in program history. That ties them with North Carolina for the most in conference history. Those two schools have combined to win 32 out of 42 titles in conference history.

All-Time ACC Conference Women’s Swimming & Diving Team Championships, By Team:

  • North Carolina – 16
  • Virginia – 16
  • Clemson – 4
  • NC State – 4
  • Florida State – 1
  • Maryland -1

Virginia’s women previously won in 1990, 1998, 1999, 2003, 2004, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2018.

This is the school’s 2nd title under head coach Todd DeSorbo, following 2018. That makes him the 7th coach in the 42-years of ACC women’s swimming & diving history to win multiple titles.

All-Time ACC Conference Women’s Swimming & Diving Team Championships, By Coach:

  • Frank Comfort, UNC – 16
  • Mark Bernardino, UVA – 11
  • Augie Busch, UVA – 3
  • Bob Boettner, Clemson – 3
  • Don Easterling, NC State – 2
  • Braden Holloway, NC State – 2
  • Todd DeSorbo, UVA – 2
  • Bruce Marichonda, Clemson – 1
  • Jim Wenhold, Maryland – 1

Virginia scored 1492.5 points, which is the most ever-scored by an ACC Championship-winning team (men’s or women’s), surpassing the 1457 points that the NC State men scored in 2018 and the 1433 points that the Virginia women scored in 2014: the first season the conference expanded to C-final scoring. Incidentally, NC state’s 1333 points is the most ever scored by a runner-up, as the conference was top-heavy this year.

1. Virginia, University of 1492.5
2. North Carolina State University 1333
3. Louisville, University of 1105.5
4. North Carolina, University of, 839
5. Notre Dame, University of 784
6. Duke University 675.5
7. Florida State University 555
8. VA Tech 469
9. Georgia Tech 407.5
10. Pittsburgh, University of 359
11. University of Miami (Florida) 298
12. Boston College 164

The story for the Cavaliers was the performance of their freshman class. While the upperclassmen, especially junior triple champion Paige Madden, contributed, the difference-maker was Virginia’s top-ranked recruiting class, which included 4 swimmers ranked in the top 20 of the class. Kate Douglass scored 91 individual points via wins in the 200 IM and 100 fly and a 3rd-place finish in the 200 breast; Ella Nelson scored 82 points; Lexi Cuomo scored 68; and Maddie Donohoe scored 54. Those 4 top-20 recruits alone combined to score 295 points out of 1180.5 individual points scored by the Cavaliers in their first ACC Championship meet. Add in another 4 from fellow rookie Ella Collins, and the class pulled in more than its 25% of the point load even in their debut.

Virginia also won 4 out of 5 relays, eschewing the false start woes that have plagued them all season. Their only defeat came in the 400 medley, where NC State used a Meet Record to knock them off.

There are still bigger questions to be answered for the Virginia women this season. They’ve staked their claim as a clear top 3 program in the country this season, but can they challenge the Cal Golden Bears and defending champion Stanford Cardinal for the NCAA title in March?

It’s definitely within the realm of reason. With wins in butterfly, sprint free, distance free, and IM races this week, plus runner-up finishes in breaststroke and backstroke events, the Cavaliers are certainly a well-rounded enough team to contend. Come March, their national-level depth might be tested a little, especially in the freestyle races where the team thins out a little after Paige Madden and Morgan Hill, and they can’t count on much from diving, where Stanford should have a handful of scoring performances.

But Virginia has one huge feather in their cap that always matters come championship season: momentum. The Cavaliers believe in themselves, they have a good mix of young talent and veteran stars,

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ACC fan
4 years ago

It’s UVAs relays that will be a big bonus for winning NCAAs.

4 years ago

Cal and Stanford each have their weaknesses this year too. It’s possible perhaps likely that a lower total score than usual wins the meet.

Nitpicking here but Ella Collins also scored 10th in the 200 free, 21 total points.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner 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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