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47 Triangle swimmers to participate in Olympic trials

Posted June 25, 2008
Updated June 26, 2008

Before he coached swimming at NC State, Brooks Teal directed a year-round swim club.

He's never seen so many Triangle swimmers qualify for the Olympic Trials:

"A handful. Three to five would have been something we're pretty proud of."

But, in 2008, almost 50 swimmers with ties to the Triangle have qualified for the trials.

"That's a really big number," says Paul Silver, coach of the Marlins of Raleigh swim club. "I think the strength of the summer league and having the Olympics in Atlanta kind of got some more bodies out there."

Those kids who got hooked on swimming in the summer of 1996 now have their own chance to make the Olympics:

"Getting it was amazing," says Erika Stewart, one of the Marlins of Raleigh. "You know you've worked so hard for this. You finally get it and it finally feels like it's all worth it."

"It was surreal. I really didn't believe it for a few days," recalls Kevin Woodhull, a swimmer at N.C. State. "I was like 'wow', I'm actually going to go out there in the big meet."

Kelsy Smith, now a senior at Florida, began swimming here about ten years ago, when it was a different Triangle swim scene.

"North Carolina swimming's definitely gotten a lot better," Smith admits. "I mean every meet we go to there's always a bunch of people out there racing each other, so I mean it's really good."

Except for former NC State standout swimmer Cullen Jones, few in the Triangle contingent are expected to make the Olympic team.

More than 1000 swimmers will compete for just 52 spots on the USA team, but many of these kids from the Triangle are good enough, and young enough, that they'll earn a return trip.

 Below are the names of the athletes, the club for which they swim, and the events they will participate in at the Olympic Trials:

NC State

Dan Velez 100 Breast, 200 Breast
Cullen Jones 50 Free, 100 Free
Mason McGee 200 Free, 400 Free
Kevin Woodhull-Smith 200 IM

UNC

Sean Quinn
Lindsey Marck
Reid Owen
Jesse Brosch
Whitney Smith
Lizzy Bruce

Raleigh Swimming Association

Katherine Roberts 100 Fly, 100 Breast, 200 Breast, 200 IM
Jonathon Roberts 200 IM, 100 Breast, 200 Breast
Torrey Bussey 100 Breast
Sarah Henry 100 Breast, 200 IM, 400 IM
Hannah Caron 200 Breast, 200 IM
Casey Kott 50 Free
William Dove 200 Free

North Carolina Aquatic Club

Chad Ames 200 Fly, 200 Back
Joshua Glasco 200 Fly
Jeff James 200 IM, 1500 Free
Timothy Liebhold 200 IM, 100 Back, 100 Free, 200 Free
Yi-khy Saw 1500 Free
Carly Smith 100 Back
Megan Steeves 100 Back
Walter Pryor 200 Breast
Patrick Woodruff 200 Breast
Kelsey Morrissy 50 Free, 100 Free
Charles Peterson 200 Free, 400 Free, 1500 Free, 400 IM
Harrison Browning 400 Free
Whitney Sprague 400 Free, 800 Free

Duke Aquatics

Karen Guilkey 100 Fly, 200 Fly
Ashley Howard 200 Back
Ashley Twichell 400 Free
Matt Crowe 50 Free, 100 Free

New Wave

Geoffrey Sanders 400 Free, 1500 Free
Robert Yeager 200 Breast

YMCA of the Triangle

Jessica Botzum 100 Breast, 200 Breast
Matthew Donch 100 Fly
Matt McGinnis 100 Free, 200 Free, 400 Free
Charles Houchin 200 Free, 1500 Free, 200 Fly

Marlins of Raleigh

Jason Miller 100 Fly
Kirsten Smith 100 Back, 200 Back, 200 IM, 400 IM
Kelsy Smith 100 Back, 200 Back
Erika Stewart 100 Back
Mason McGee 200 Free, 400 Free
Kassia Shishkoff 200 Free, 800 Free, 400 IM
Kevin Woodhull-Smith 200 IM

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  • tgw Jun 26, 8:14 a.m.

    God bless each of you as you chase your dreams of making the Olympic Team. Be safe, be smart, and remember where you have come from.

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