FAIRBANKS, Alaska, April 15. TWO swimmers from Alaska have become the first to sign with Alaska Fairbanks for the new women’s swimming program when it begins competition next fall.
Megan Humphrey of Lathrop High School and Fairbanks will join Miriah Phelps of Homer, Alaska who is currently a student at UAF, in swimming for the Nanooks. Humphrey will enter as a freshman this fall, with four years of eligibility. Phelps, who will be a senior academically and a junior in terms of eligibility, will have two years to compete for UAF.
Humphrey, who competed at Lathrop HS and for the Midnight Sun Swimming Club under current UAF Head Coach Scott Lemley, was the Region VI champion in the 500-yard freestyle last fall. She was a finalist at the state championships as both a junior and a senior, and was a co-captain at LHS last fall. The Malemute girls finished third at state last season, two points behind state champ Anchorage Service HS. Her father, Mike, is the Director of Benefits at UAF.
Phelps was an age group swimmer in Anchorage. She swam for Homer High School as a senior after her family moved from Anchorage, and will compete in the 100 and 200 yard breaststroke for the Nanooks.
“Megan is a distance swimmer, she’ll primarily swim the 500, 1000 and 1650 freestyle,” said Lemley. “Megan will be one of the leaders on our team in terms of work ethic. She is extremely strong academically, and she has made steady progress for the five years that I’ve coached her. She’s also qualified for meets such as the Western Zone Championships, which features the top swimmers from 10 western states, and she will begin her collegiate career coming off that high caliber meet in early August.”
Lemley said that Phelps would also contribute. “I anticipate Miriah making a major contribution to our team,” said Lemley. “She is a very good student, and she will bring a lot of maturity to the team as a senior academically. She will have the ability to set goals and not be distracted by the day to day ups and downs, and will be able to provide a great example for the freshmen coming in.”
Phelps came to UAF to study biological sciences, and is excited about swimming. "I changed high schools several times, and I helped my parents build a house in Homer, so I didn't get to swim that much in high school," said Phelps. "I'm really glad that they got swimming going again, and I'm excited that I will have the opportunity to swim at UAF."