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ND Women’s Swimming: Gophigure

Joe Meixell | Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Julia Quinn had obvious reason to be happy after Friday’s victory over Minnesota. She won two events and helped Notre Dame obtain a 163-135 victory. But Quinn had another reason to smile – she had just defeated her old team.

Quinn, a self-proclaimed Irish fan since she was able to walk, initially chose Minnesota over Notre Dame as her destination of choice for her collegiate swimming career.

“I had a lot of family come to Notre Dame including a couple who were involved in varsity athletics, so I guess I was just trying to break away from my family,” Quinn said.

Despite enjoying two successful seasons for the Golden Gophers, which included an NCAA championship appearance, Quinn found herself unable to permanently resist the attraction of Notre Dame.

“Even at Minnesota, I still thought about Notre Dame a lot,” said Quinn. “It wasn’t until coach [Carrie] Nixon got hired as head coach, though, that I really got interested. I was looking for a coach with energy and a coach that would be able to relate to athletes, and coach Nixon has all that.”

Quinn is happy with her new coach, and Nixon has equal reason to be content with her newest transfer.

Quinn helped the 200-meter medley relay team to a victory against Minnesota and won the 200-meter breast stroke with a time of 2:18.17.

In addition, Quinn has formed a lethal combination in the 200-meter breast stroke with fellow junior Jessica Stephens, as they have accounted for first and second place in the 200-meter breast stroke in each of the last three meets for the Irish.

“Julia is a very talented athlete and a very hard worker,” Nixon said. “She has gotten better and she’s going to continue to do so.”

While Quinn said she made the right decision in transferring to Notre Dame, she describes her experience at Minnesota as beneficial in helping her advance to where she is today.

“My experience at Minnesota was integral to who I am today,” Quinn said. “Swimming under the coaches there gave me a different perspective, and it has been something that I’ve built upon since I got to Notre Dame.”

The Irish are reaping the benefits of having as talented a swimmer as Quinn on board.

“Since she has been on different teams, she has a unique maturity and perspective,” Nixon said. “She took her experience from Minnesota here with her, and it is helping both her and our team. We are very fortunate she decided to look our way.”