Penn State Announces Signing 12 New Lions

STATE COLLEGE, Pa., Feb. 6. THE Penn State Swimming and Diving teams have announced that 12 high school students have signed national letters of intent for the 2003-04 season. Four of the newcomers hail from the state of Pennsylvania.

The signees for the men’s team are:
Ofer Finkler (Ramot & Wietzman Institute/ Rishon Le-Zion, Israel) was a member of the 2000-02 Israeli National Team and competes in the 50, 100, and 200 freestyle and 100 butterfly;

Patrick Healey (LaSalle HS/Philadelphia, Pa.) holds the Philadelphia Catholic School Record in the 500 freestyle and swims the 200 and 500 freestyle and Nathan Torok (Council Rock HS/Newtown, Pa.) is a high school and YMCA All-American who competes in the 100 & 200 backstroke and the 200 freestyle.

Head Coach Bill Dorenkott stated, “Our staff identified three qualities that we are looking for in this year’s class: the first is young men with character; the second is a strong desire to gain an education that will last a lifetime and finally, student-athletes who expect the best from themselves and those around them in the pool. We believe that these young men more than meet these criteria.”

The women who signed national letters of intent are:

Racheal Ahrenhold (Germantown Academy/Bluebell, Pa.) is a four-time All-American and competes in Sprint freestyle events;

Jessica Barnes (Bishop Shanahan HS/Glenmore, Pa.) whose events are the 100 & 200 backstroke;

Rikki Covey (Spokane, Wash) is a first team All-American and competes in the 100, 200, and 500 freestyle;

Nikki Collins (Carmel HS/Carmel, Ind.) swims the 200, 500, and 1650 freestyle;

Chelsea Frank (Manchester West HS/Bedford, N.H.) competes in the 100 & 200 backstroke;

Claire Hawley (Barnstable HS/Centreville, Mass.) swims the 400 Free, 400 IM, and the 200 IM;

Margy Keefe (Ursuline Academy/Cincinnati, Ohio) is a member of the U.S. Open water National Team and swims distance freestyle events;

Erin Morris (Snider HS/Ft. Wayne, Ind.) is the Indiana State high school champion in the 100 backstroke; her events include the 200 & 500 freestyle, 200 & 400 IM and the 100 & 200 backstroke; and

Wesley Swafford (Beechwood HS/Ft. Mitchell, Ky.) was the 2002 regional 200 IM champion at the Kentucky State Championships and her events are the 100 free, 100 & 200-yard breaststroke, 200 IM, and the 100 butterfly.

Dorenkott added, “One of the hallmarks of championship caliber teams is a healthy blend of quality and depth. The Penn State Swimming Class of 2007 brings with it a combination of national level experience along with some emerging talent. Our staff is pleased to have the opportunity to coach this group for the next four years.”

The Penn State Swimming and Diving team will be back in action on Friday, February 7, 2003 at the University of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pa.

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