Dec. 20, 2006
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - "We are proud to add these seven athletes to our class of 2011", said longtime UCSB Swimming coach Gregg Wilson. "As the defending Big West Champions, our staff has been trying to recruit not just fast swimmers, but student athletes who have a `championship attitude' towards all pursuits in life. UCSB is one of the top academic institutions in the country and because of that our athletes need to be top notch students. Our staff feels that this early group of signees will fit the requirement just fine," Wilson added.
The seven student athletes are: Sara Nicponski: Resides in Salt Lake City Utah and is one of the best kept secrets in USA Swimming. Her best times are: 1:03.1 and 2:17.7 in the breaststroke and 2:05.4 in the 200 IM. "Sara is tall, lean and has great technique in all four strokes and many people out there thought she was only a junior this year," said eighth year Assistant coach Jeremy Kipp. "Sara is going to be a fast swimmer, no doubt about it, and she comes from an excellent club team coached by Matt Vicario of Eagle Aquatics. We feel that when she gets in our strength and conditioning program there really is no limit to how fast she can be in this sport."
Brittany Borowitz: From Orange, California. Third year assistant coach Naya Higashijima had this to say about Borowitz: "Brittany is a sound all-around stroke swimmer with the potential to be very fast in the IM events. Brittany will also give us depth in other events and depending on the year and our strengths. Brittany may be able to final in up to 6 events in our conference, which makes her a valuable addition to the Gauchos." Borowitz's best times are: 2:06.4 and 4:30 in the IM; 58.0 And 2:07.3 in the fly and 1:06 and 2:24 in the breaststroke. Borowitz also can do the middle distance freestyles with best times of 5:07 and 10:21 in the 500 and 1000.
Kelsey Lewis: Resides in Orinda, California. "There is always one thing for certain when you get an Orinda Aquatic swimmer, the swimmers are technically sound in all four strokes, additionally they have great attitudes towards training and competing and they will give their team everything they have," said Coach Wilson. "Kelsey provides more strength in the IM events with best times of 2:06.7 and 4:26.7 in the IM's, but we also think she has a lot of room for growth in the freestyle events. Kelsey is also a 1:54 and 5:02 freestyler which will help our freestyle events in the long run," Wilson added.
Charlie Patch: From Centennial, Colorado. "Having signed two of the best male swimmers out of Colorado in the last two years, Charlie was immediately interested in the Gauchos. When we saw the time drops Charlie made the match was known immediately. Last year Charlie dropped from a 4:50 in the 500 to a 4:37 and with an altitude adjustment that was really a 4:32. I think it is safe to say that Charlie is on his way to becoming a very good distance swimmer and in this sport those kinds of time drops are amazing. He has also been 1:42 in the 200, 9:35 in the 1000 and 16:08 in the mile and we expect him to make the same kind of improvements in those events," stated Coach Kipp.
Chris Day: From Seattle, Washington. "We are very excited to have Chris sign with the Gauchos early. Chris swam very fast this summer so his short course times do not reflect the improvement he has made in the last year. At 6'1" and 175 lbs, Chris is going to mature into a solid middle distance swimmer for the Gauchos and his best times of 4:38 and 9:38 in the freestyles will drop significantly in his first few years," said Coach Wilson who trains most of the distance swimmers.
Dan Morris: Resides in Fountain Valley, California. "Talk about a swimmer in an athlete's body, Dan is not only a good swimmer, but he is also Fountain Valley High School's starting shooting guard for basketball. Most guys who do other sports are usually water polo players in Southern California, so I think Dan is our first shooting guard to sign early," boasted coach Kipp. What makes Dan a great prospect is that he has excellent natural speed with best times of 21.8 and 46.4 in the free and 53.5 in the backstroke. "Dan is playing basketball during a point of the year when most swimmers are really working on aerobic base and kicking, so we think that when Dan focuses on just swimming he is going to be a very explosive sprinter," Kipp added.
Adam Gonzales: From Fountain Valley, California. "This is a recruiting steal," coach Higashijima said. "Adam is a 57.9 breaststroker and 1:54 IMer who plays water polo much of the year and has never really trained full time as a swimmer so Adam has as much talent as any swimmer in Southern California," Coach Higashijima raved. "His stroke is powerful and when he gets a full regime of training this guy is going to be a NCAA potential swimmer," Coach Wilson added.