Winter Jrs Mid-Distance Freestyler Claire Therien Commits to Rice

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Orinda Aquatics’ Claire Therien, of Danville, California, has made a verbal commitment to the Rice University class of 2020. Therien is a two-time USA Swimming Scholastic All American from San Ramon Valley High School. She was a finalist at CIF’s inaugural California State Meet in May 2015, placing seventh in the 500 free and third in the 400 free relay, contributing to San Ramon Valley High’s overall third-place team finish.

Therien began swimming midway through her freshman year of high school, and has made great strides over the last three years. Her top times include

  SCY LCM
50 free 24.68 27.98
100 free 51.93 59.43
200 free 1:49.12 2:05.90
500/400 free 4:53.91 4:23.62
1000/800 free 10:06.93 9:07.47
1650/1500 free 17:09.34 17:27.75
100 fly 57.38 1:05.58
200 IM 2:06.85 2:26.18
400 IM 4:31.56 5:11.09

The Owls have a strong freestyle group, but their two highest 200/500/1650 scorers (then-senior Erin Flanigan and now-senior Taylor Armstrong) at last year’s Conference-USA Championships will both have graduated when Therien arrives in Houston. Therien’s best times would have placed her in the “A” finals of the 200 and 500 frees, and just ahead of current junior Anniina Ala-Seppala at 13th in the 1650.

In addition to Ala-Seppala, Rice boasts freshmen Sydney Franzen and Hanna Huston in their mid/long-distance freestyle group, so Therien will have a strong peer group with which to continue to develop from the moment she suits up as an Owl.

“The caring coaches, team family and awesome academic program made falling in love with Rice easy. I am excited to be swimming for Rice!”

If you have a commitment to report, please send an email to [email protected]

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About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swim/swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

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