April 25, 2002
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
Head coach Neil Harper and his Florida State swimming and diving team took time out of the pool to enjoy their annual team picnic at the Seminole Reservation last Thursday. In between the barbecue, skiing and other activities, coach Harper handed out his annual awards to the swimmers and divers.
And the winners are…
Most Valuable Swimmers
–Justin Betts: Betts was the lone representative of the men’s swim team at the 2002 NCAA championships. He competed in three events, the 100 and 200-yard breaststrokes and the 200-yard I.M. Betts swam an A-cut time of 54.24, third-fastest in school history, to finish second in the 100-breast at the 2002 ACC championship.
–Christy Cech: Cech finished ninth at NCAAs in the 50-yard freestyle to earn All-America honorable mention and also competed in the 100-free. At the ACC meet, Cech won two golds (100-free and 400-medley relay) and three silvers (50-free, 200-medley relay and 400-free relay) to earn All-ACC honors three times.
Cech earned All-America honorable mention honors in the 50-free.
–Emma Dutton: Dutton turned in the strongest representation of the Lady Seminoles swim team at NCAAs by competing in three events. In all, she swam the 100-free,100-breast and 200-I.M. Dutton, along with Cech, was a member of the 200-yard medley relay team that set the school record at the ACC championship with a time of 1:41.58.
–Wickus Nienaber: Nienaber earned the award after having the honor of scoring the most points for the Seminoles in dual meets. He helped led the men to a 10-3 record in 2002. This marked the first season under Harper and the first since 1997 that the men won 10 meets.
Most Valuable Divers
-Louie Gagnet: Gagnet won ACC titles on both the one and three-meter, earning him ACC Most Valuable Diver honors, and later qualified on all three boards at the NCAAs. He nearly missed earning All-America honorable mention honors on the platform with a 17th-place finish. Gagnet also broke the school’s three-meter record with a score of 363.85.
Gagnet brought home ACC titles on both the one and three-meter boards.
–Chelsie Lerew: Lerew earned All-America honorable mention after finishing 14th on the one-meter at NCAAs. She also placed 17th on the three-meter. At the ACC meet, Lerew was named Most Valuable Diver after winning the three-meter crown and finishing second on the one-meter. In addition, Lerew set new school records on the one and three-meter boards.
–Tiffany Manning: Manning earned the Lady Seminoles only All-America first-team honor at NCAAs after placing seventh on the platform. She was later named ACC Rookie of the Year for her performance at NCAAs and the ACC meet. Manning earned All-ACC honors on both the one (third place) and three-meter (second place) boards.
–Emily Breen: Breen was a member of four medley relay teams this season that placed first. At the ACC meet she scored for the Lady Seminoles in five events, the 200-medley relay (second), 400-free relay (second), 100-backstroke (10th), 100-butterfly (11th) and 100-free (13th). She also swam a NCAA-B cut time in the 100-free.
–Matt Carmen: Carmen was the fourth-highest scorer for the men at the ACC championship. He finished second in the 200 and 400-yard free relays, fourth in the 100-yard free, seventh in the 800-free relay and ninth in the 50-free. In addition, he turned in the fastest split in the 400-free relay at ACCs.
Lo showed dramatic improvement this season at the ACC championships.
–Courtney McClow: Courtney came on strong at the end of the season and turned in her best performance of the season at the ACC championships. She impressed the conference after winning the one-meter dive and later placing eighth on the three-meter.
Performance of the Year
–Candice Nethercott: Nethercott actually turned in two performances of the year in 2002. First was her second-place finish at the ACC championships in the 100-fly with a NCAA-A cut time of 54.48, surpassing her previous best of 54.75. Her encore performance came at the NCAAs where she just missed All-America honorable mention honors in the 100-fly after swimming the second-fastest time in school history at 54.17.
Nethercott, shown receiving her silver medal at the ACC meet, ended her FSU career by swimming the two best performances ever.