Reaney rounds out career with trio of top-four finishes at national championships
Daniel O'Boyle | Monday, March 23, 2015
Senior Emma Reaney earned three All-American honors, while senior Allison Casareto achieved an honorable mention All-American selection as Notre Dame finished 21st overall at the NCAA championships in Greensboro, North Carolina, over the weekend.
Reaney — the most decorated swimmer or diver in Notre Dame history — finished third in the 100-yard breaststroke and fourth in both the 200-yard individual medley and the 200-yard breaststroke, bringing her total number of All-American nods to eight; she was also an honorable-mention selection on five occasions.
Casareto earned her honorable mention selection with a ninth-place finish in the 1-meter dive, winning the consolation finals with a score of 325.20.
Reaney said she had been able to handle the nerves of what was her fourth NCAA meet and enjoy herself.
“It just felt like any other meet,” Reaney said. “That felt good for me because when I just relax and have fun, I tend to swim better.
“It’s always fun to be able to goof off with not only teammates but with friends I have from all the other schools around the country. After so many years, we all know each other and support each other, and the meet is much more enjoyable when you get behind everyone else competing and want them to succeed as well.”
Reaney earned her best-ever finish in the individual medley, which she said was the performance she was most proud of.
“I am so happy with my 200 IM,” Reaney said. “I’ve never placed that high at NCAAs, and it was an event that was considered my best one until college, so to end that collegiate event on a high note kind of showed that it has come full-circle in my four years here.”
In a photo finish, Reaney was determined to have touched the wall third in the 100-yard breaststroke, 0.21 seconds away from first position. Reaney said although she was disappointed, she enjoyed taking part in such a competitive race.
“My 100 breaststroke was just fun,” Reaney said. “I really learned to absolutely love that event this year, and I know I could have and probably should have won that one, so that stings a little.
“I was so fired up at night and just had a blast swimming that event. The morning swim didn’t go quite as planned, so I am pretty happy with how I turned it around in finals.”
Although she failed to defend her national title in the 200-yard breaststroke, Reaney still managed another All-American scroll in the event. She said she regrets failing to earn back-to-back national titles in her favorite event, but she was still proud of her achievement.
“The 200 breast is a bit of a sore subject, I guess,” Reaney said. “I am disappointed that I wasn’t able to defend my national championship, but being able to say that I ended my collegiate career with an All-American swim isn’t too shabby either.
“I will always love that event, and swimming it for the last time in an ND cap was very bittersweet.”
Casareto finished 18th in the 3-meter dive, while senior Courtney Whyte capped off her Notre Dame career with a 34th-place finish in the 200-yard butterfly and 46th-place finishes in both the 100-yard butterfly and the 100-yard backstroke.