AMES, Iowa, April 30. IOWA State head coach Duane Sorenson announced three additions to the swimming and diving team Monday. Alex Flatness and Shahar Silberman have signed national letters of intent while Maria Gannon has been accepted to the university and will join the squad as a walk-on.
Silberman joins the Cyclones from Petah Tikva, Israel. One of the top swimmers in the nation, Silberman has participated in many international competitions on behalf of her home country. She participated in the 2009 Maccabiah Games, finishing fourth in the 200 fly and 400 IM. Silberman made her senior national team debut at the Diamond Swimming Cup in Antwerp, Belgium in January 2011, finishing second in the 200 fly.
“Shahar is a national-team member with Israel,” Sorenson noted. “She completed her two years of required service in the military so she is going to be an older freshman. She has great international experience and she is very excited to be coming over to the U.S. to compete.”
Flatness comes from Ankeny High School after completing her prep career for the Hawkettes and coach Michelle Stout. Flatness finished second at the 2011 Iowa High School State Championships in the 100 free and seventh in the 50 free. She anchored for the third-place 200 free relay squad, helping the group earn a school record. Flatness is also the school record holder in the 100 free.
“Alex is an up-and-coming sprinter,” Sorenson said. “She has been a frequent guest at our swim camps. She had a great state championships this fall, and we feel there is a bright future for her.”
Gannon joins Iowa State after being a two-time state qualifier for Iowa City West in the 500 free. Gannon also earned all-conference honors as a senior, finishing fourth in the 200 and 500 free at the Mississippi Valley Conference Championships. She comes from a Cyclone family, as her brother Jacob plays on the offensive line for the Iowa State football team and her father Mike played for the Cyclone football squad in the 70s.
“Maria does not have a lot of experience in the sport because she is a late starter,” Sorenson stated. “She has a tremendous competitive attitude. She is a team player and a hard worker, and we think that we will see something from her over the next couple of years.”
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