March 17, 2005
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. –
Four years ago, Florida State University diver Courtney McClow joined the Seminole swimming and diving team as a walk on with only a few years of formal training. Now she is one of the elite collegiate divers in the country as is evident from her performance Thursday (March 17) on the first day of the NCAA Championships.
The senior garnered Honorable Mention All-America accolades for her performance on the one-meter board as she finished tenth with a six-dive total of 279.60 points. McClow’s (Jacksonville, Fla.) score was just 0.35 points from ninth place and 7.1 points from getting her into the finals. For the second time in a month the team captain beat last year’s one-meter champion, Lauren King of South Carolina.
“Courtney did really well today, it was a really tough competition,” FSU diving coach Patrick Jeffrey said. “There are a lot of good divers here and everyone was really bunched together, she was only seven points away from the finals. The prelims are a long drawn out process and in the past I’ve seen her get intimidated at this level, but she’s past that now.”
“I was very happy with the way I dove today,” McClow said. “It was a lot of fun and a really good competition. At first having such a long time in between dives was tough, but after a while you develop a pattern and you have to use it to your advantage.”
This is the fourth year in a row that Florida State has had a women’s diver earn All-America honors. With the addition of McClow’s award, the Seminoles have earned a total of eight All-America certificates during the last four NCAA Championships.
“She didn’t miss on any of her dives,” Jeffrey noted. “There were a few that she could have been sharper on, but there were no big mistakes. This is a good start for Courtney, she has two more events to look forward to and we think she has a shot of making the finals in both of them.”
During the morning’s preliminary heats, Florida State had a pair of relays in action as well as one swimmer in an individual event. The Seminoles’ first swim of the day was in the 200 free relay where the team of Emily Breen (Savannah, Ga.), Carrie Ellis (Valrico, Fla.), Lauren Brick (Culpeper, Va.) and Lindsay Kenney (Plano, Texas) hit the wall in 1:35.06 for 21st place.
The Tribe’s only individual entry during the first day of swimming was Ellis as the senior notched a time of 23.61 to finish 59th in the 50 free. Wrapping up the first session was the 200 medley quarter of Breen, Brick, Kenney and Ellis as they tallied a 3:45.92 to take 19th.
“We’re doing pretty well, you just have to see if you can get a little better each day,” FSU head coach Neil Harper said. “It was a good start, our splits were pretty good in the relays, but when you don’t have the right combination it can be a three or four second swing. Everyone is positive and looking forward to their individual swims tomorrow.”
The meet continues Friday (March 18) at the Boilermaker Aquatic Center with prelims at 11 a.m. (CST). All four Seminole swimmers will compete in individual events. Both Ellis and Kenney will take part in the 200 free with Breen in the 100 fly and ACC Champion Brick – FSU’s highest seed at No. 19 – swimming in the 100 breaststroke. McClow will compete on the three-meter board.