BURNABY, British Columbia, May 18. THE Simon Fraser University Clan swimming and diving program announced today the commitment of nine recruits to the team for the 2010-11 season. On the men's side, Ciaran McDonnell (Port Coquitlam, B.C.), Bruno Sharpe (Edmonton, AB), Christopher Tanninen (Burlington, Ont.), James McQuade (North Vancouver, B.C.) and Alex Duguay (Dollard-des-Ormeaux, Que.) will join the Clan. On the women's side, Nicole Cossey (Red Deer, AB), Hannah Fregin (Coquitlam, B.C.), Whitley Sheehan (Grande Prairie, AB) and Katie McEvoy (Victoria, B.C.) will debut next year as SFU transitions into NCAA Division II.
"With David Hibberd emerging as a top-five Canadian senior national level swimmer and Ben Berg as our newest NAIA National Champion," said SFU head coach Liam Donnelly. "We are definitely heading in the right direction as we move into the NCAA."
McDonnell is attending Archbishop Carney Secondary in Port Coquitlam and placed twelfth at the Senior National Championships in Montreal in March.
"Ciaran is one of the top developing male swimmers in Canada," said Donnelly. "I have seen him a number of times and am impressed. He has laid a solid foundation and continues to improve."
Sharpe won a silver medal at the 2010 Western Canadian Championships and is ranked 33rd in Canada in the 400IM.
"His coaches speak very highly of him," said Donnelly. "He was captain of his club team and he competes hard to win."
Tanninen is ranked 73rd in the country in the 400m freestyle. In 2008, he trained with the Finnish National swim team at the National High Performance center in Mäkelänrinne, Helsinki, Finland.
"He is a little older than the other recruits," said Donnelly of Tanninen. "He has a strong swimming background in his family with his father being a former swim coach."
McQuade won a bronze medal at the 2010 Western Canadian Championships and is currently ranked 24th in the country in the 200m backstroke.
"James is another local guy and from what I have seen of him, he is impressive," said Donnelly. "He has been on provincial teams and is breaking through at the national level."
Duguay won a silver medal at 2010 Quebec Winter Provincial Championships and is ranked 61st in Canada (200IM).
"Alex has been in multiple finals and can compete nationally," said Donnelly.
Cossey posted a fifth place finish at the 2010 Western Canadian Championships and is the 49th ranked swimmer in Canada (100 butterfly).
Fregin was a BC Provincial Championship finalist.
"Hannah is a local product and is a real hard worker," said Donnelly of Fregin. "She has been active at the junior national level and should be able to maintain her level. She is a good character pickup and exactly what we are looking for moving forward."
Sheehan was an Alberta Provincial Championships finalist.
"She is very similar to Hannah in some ways", said Donnelly. "She knows a little more of what she wants since she is a little older and we expect a leadership role out of her."
McEvoy won the silver medal at the BC Provincial Championships and is ranked 72nd in Canada (200 breaststroke).
"Katie's coaches in Victoria speak very highly of her," said Donnelly. "She has good character and a solid background. Her mother was a swimmer so I think that Katie knows what it takes to compete at this level."
Simon Fraser University will officially move into the NCAA in 2010-11, becoming the first Canadian institution to join the NCAA, and will become a part of the Great Northwest Athletic Conference (GNAC).
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