March 17, 2004
Who: Florida State Women's Swimming & Diving What: At NCAA Championships When: Thursday-Saturday (March 18-20) All Day Where: College Station, Texas. (Texas A&M's SRC Natatorium)
FSU WOMEN LOOK TO END YEAR ON A HIGH NOTE IN THE LONE STAR STATE: Only the best of the best are invited to the NCAA Championships and the Florida State University women’s swimming and diving program will have seven representatives at the meet. Three-day event kicks of Thursday at the Texas A&M SRC Natatorium in College Station, Texas. Last season the Seminoles finished 36th at the meet.
ICING ON THE CAKE WOULD BE ALL-AMERICA AWARD FOR DUTTON: Leading Florida State’s contingency at the NCAA Championships will be Emma Dutton (Bradford, England). The ACC Swimmer of the Meet will compete in the three individual events that she won at the league meet – 50 free, 100 breaststroke and 200 breaststroke – as well as the four winning relays she was on – 200 & 400 free and 200 & 400 medley. Dutton is only the third swimmer in the history of the ACC to win seven events in a single championship.
MANNING TRIES TO GO 3-FOR-3 ON THE ALL-AMERICA LIST: FSU’s lone returning All-American is diver Tiffany Manning (Mission Viejo, Calif). The junior cemented her spot in the national summit when she won the platform at the Zone “B” meet. The ACC Diver of the Meet has a chance to be just sixth athlete in school history to earn All-America honors three years in a row. Manning has collected a pair of accolades on the platform during her first two years.
FSU CONTINGENCY IS AMONG THE BEST IN THE ACC: The Seminoles are sending a school-record tying seven student-athletes to the NCAA meet this year, equaling North Carolina for second from the ACC and one back of Virginia. When the diving is factored in, FSU will have representatives in 12 events, more than any other league school. Florida State is the only conference team to qualify a relay and Emma Dutton is the only swimmer in the league with three different qualifying times in the top eight.
SEMINOLES FIND SUCCESS AT NCAA MEET UNDER HARPER: Under fifth-year head coach Neil Harper, Florida State has had at least one student-athlete earn All-America honors in each of his first four seasons. Harper’s time in Tallahassee has also seen the Tribe post double-digit wins three years in a row for the first time in school history, including a FSU and ACC record-setting 15 dual meet wins in 2004. Currently ranked 18th, Florida State has climbed to as high as 17th in the CSCAA poll.
FIRST-TIMERS CLUB: Rookies Lauren Brick (Culpeper, Va.) and Taryn Ignacio (Richmond, Ky.) are the first FSU freshmen to attend the meet in two years since Tiffany Manning in 2002. It has been even longer since the Tribe had a rookie swimmer in the meet. Current assistant coach Anne Blachford earned All-America honors during the 1997 meet in the 200 IM. Brick will compete in the 100 breaststroke while Ignacio will dive on the platform and three-meter board.
SEMINOLE REPRESENTATION HAS PLENTY OF EXPERIENCE AT NCAA’S: Of the five upperclassmen representing FSU at the NCAA Championships, only junior Lisa How (Preston, England) is making her first trip to the meet. Leading the way with their third appearance is senior Emma Dutton and junior Tiffany Manning, while junior Emily Breen (Savannah, Ga.) and senior Rachel Dong (Paramount, Calif.) will see the deck at the national summit for the second time.
BREEN, HOW AND DONG ADD TO FSU’S STRENGTH IN THE STROKE EVENTS: Joining Emma Dutton on the list of three-event participants is Emily Breen as she will take part in the 50 and 100 free as well as the 100 butterfly. Also wearing the Garnet and Gold during the 100 fly will be Lisa How to go along with her swim at the 200-meter distance. Besides Dutton, Rachel Dong and Lauren Brick will take part in the 100 breaststroke with the FSU trio making up the second-highest representation in a single event, just one behind Virginia’s four swimmers in the 400 meter freestyle.