By Kristina Rogge
The Catawba swimming team is off to finish a great season with a new record for the number of individual swimmers qualifying to compete at the NCAA Division II Nationals in March 2019.
The team started off the season introducing a new assistant coach, Tharon Drake. Drake is a blind Paralympian, the first blind coach for college swimming in the United States. He is currently a team member for Team USA and the United States Paralympic National Team.
The team trained tirelessly every morning and afternoon with the mindset for achieving success at the first biggest swim meet of the season in Tampa, Florida. Numerous records and qualifications were accomplished at the meet. The swimmers that qualified for Nationals were the new freshman of the team including Carolin Albers in the 500-Freestyle and 200-Freestyle, Joao Miranda in the 1000-Freestyle, Robert Hudgens in the 1000-Freestyle. Although these swimmers have made the qualifying times, Nationals can only take a certain number of athletes in each event. Thus, it will come up to Bluegrass Conference in Charlotte or the Queens Swim Meet in February, to determine if Catawba College will have another year of swimmers competing against all the Division II schools in the nation.
So far, the rankings show:
Carolin Albers (ranked 59th in 200-Freestyle, 36th in 500-Freestyle)
Carolin Bek (ranked 79th in 500-Freestyle)
Joao Miranda (ranked 24th in the-1000 Freestyle)
Robert Hudgens (ranked 41st in 1000-Freestyle)
Catawba College looks forward to seeing what the swimmers have in store for us. There is no doubt that their work in the pool will bring them success.