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ND Women’s Swimming and Diving: Reaney makes waves in freshman season

Scott Frano | Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Mere months into her Notre Dame swimming career, freshman Emma Reaney is garnering national attention.

Reaney was named the Big East Women’s Swimming and Diving Athlete of the Week for the week of Nov. 8 after a terrific performance in a 188-112 loss at Louisville. She won three individual events and anchored the 400m freestyle relay team to victory. The Lawrence, Kan., native said she was overjoyed and surprised by the honor.

“The whole thing was surprising in itself, getting a best time so early in the season,” Reaney said. “Obviously it feels really great and it’s such an honor. It was kind of surprising actually, so early in the season. It was great.”

The Walsh Hall resident was the only freshman in the field for her wins in the 100m breaststroke and 200m breaststroke. Reaney credited her teammates and coaches for her seamless transition into the collegiate swimming world, saying they have made the adjustment to college much easier for her.

“They’re my 20 best friends here,” Reaney said. “They have been there through all the transition stages and everything. Swimming is stressful and going to practice you know you’re going to be in pain for the whole time, but you know you’re there with all your best friends. We get along weirdly well for how many girls there are. The coaches will beg you to help you. They’ll do anything they can to help you improve and make sure you’re doing well in college.”

In the Louisville meet on Nov. 12, Reaney anchored the 400m freestyle relay team. Entering the pool with the Irish behind by .10 seconds, Reaney managed to close the gap with a 50.60 second run, the fastest of the race, which was enough to earn the victory for the Irish.

“I just buried my head and dug down and started to pull as much water as I could and I ended up catching her,” Reaney said. “It was awesome.”

Reaney said her focus now is on finishing the season as strongly as she started it and hopefully making the NCAA tournament. Looking even further ahead, Reaney has made the time cut for the Olympic trial in the 100m breaststroke, and said she hopes to qualify for trials in more events.

“Right now I’m just focusing on this summer and obviously making NCAAs and swimming there,” Reaney said. “That would be really awesome, to represent Notre Dame at the national level.”


Contact Scott Frano at [email protected]