Iowa Swimming and Diving Adds Seven Recruits

IOWA CITY, Iowa, June 1. UNIVERSITY of Iowa Head Swimming Coach Marc Long has announced the signing of seven additional recruits. Molly Houlton and Katarina Tour have signed with the women's team. Alex Dragon, Conor Dwyer, Sean Hagan, Cameron Lennon, and Damjan Strbac signed with the men's team.

Houlton comes to Iowa from Tucson, Ariz., and specializes in the backstroke, IM and freestyle. As a prep, she captured an Arizona individual state championship, along with being a former age group national record holder and Olympic trial qualifier. Houlton's times in the 200 back (1:58), 200 IM (2:02.5) and 500 free (4:52) would have led the Hawkeyes this past season.

Tour, a native of Farsta, Sweden, will be a valuable asset to the Hawkeyes as she can compete in any stroke. Her converted top times in the 100 breast (1:02.8), 50 (23.7) and 100 free (51.7), and 200 IM (2:04.1) would have ranked near the top of Iowa's best times last season. Tour has been a member of the Swedish National Team and is expected to have a vital role on Hawkeye relays.

Dragon of Muscatine, Iowa, specializes in the 200 (1:53.2) and 400 IM (4:01.6), along with the 100 (57.8) and 200 breast (2:06.2), where he is expected to add significant depth to the Iowa roster. He was the Iowa state champion in the 100 breast and 200 IM in 2007, an all-state athlete and high school all-American.

Dwyer is a native of Winnetka, Ill., and should contribute immediately in the freestyle. His times in the 100 (47.2) and 200 free (1:42.8) are competitive with Iowa's best times. Dwyer swims for Loyola Academy and was a member of the Lake Forest USS (United States Swimming) state championship team.

Hagan of Boone, Iowa, can compete in the 200 IM (1:53.9), 100 free (46.9) and breast. He is expected to help Iowa in all of these strokes. Hagan is an all-state selection and a high school all-American.

Lennon is an outstanding butterflyer who will also add depth to the sprint free races. The native of Urbandale, Iowa, has top times of 50.3 in the 100 fly, 1:51.8 in the 200 fly and 21.3 in the 50 free. Lennon is a high school all-American, an all-state selection and an Iowa USS state champion.

Strbac comes to Iowa from Zagreb, Croatia, and will compete in the free and fly. He will be a huge addition to the relays as well, and has converted top times of 20.7 (50 free), 45.2 (100 free) and 49.0 (100 fly). Strbac had finishes of 4th in the 50, 5th in the 100 and 12th in the 200 free, and was a member of three top-three relay teams at the Croatian Junior Nationals. At the Croatian Senior Nationals he placed 16th in the 50, 14th in the 100 and 15th in the 200 free, and was a four-time high school championship finalist.
Seven other preps signed with Iowa during the fall signing period. They are Therese Bergstrom, Kelsie Neubauer, Caitlin Carlyle and Veronica Rydze who signed with the women's team, and Richard Salhus, Bryan Hill and Max Dittmer for the men's squad.

Bergman, a native of Motola, Sweden, was a medal finalist at both the Junior and Senior Swedish Nationals. Her career bests are 1:10.40 (SCM) in the 100 breast, 2:32.33 (SCM) in the 200 breast and 2:04.73 (SCM) in the 200 free.

Neubauer recorded a seventh place finish in the 200 IM at the 2006 Illinois State meet for Libertyville High School. The two-time conference champion was named Academic All-American as a junior and senior and is a member of the National Honor Society.

Carlyle of Denison, IA, was the 2006 Iowa High School State runner-up in the 100 free. She also placed fourth in the 50 free at the 2006 meet. Carlyle also holds the school record in all freestyle events.

Rydze was the 2005 and 2006 Iowa State one-meter diving champion. The Iowa City native also earned 2006 NSCA All-American (National Swimming Coaches Association), and is the daughter of long-time Iowa Diving Coach Bob Rydze.

Salhus of Windsor Glen, South Africa, was a South African national qualifier from 2004-2006. He was a member of the South African National Junior Squad in 2005 and 2006. Salhus' best times are 23.65, 51.48 and 1:52.27 (50, 100 and 200 SCM free), and 57.34 (LCM) in the 100 fly.

Hill competed at West Des Moines Valley in Des Moines, IA. He was the 2006 Iowa high school state runner-up in the 100 back, and an all-state selection.

Dittmer, a Muscatine, IA native, placed third in the 100 back with 50.8 and fourth in the 200 IM at the 2006 Iowa high school state meet. He also led off the 200 medley relay with a split of 23.6 in the 50 back. Dittmer was also named an all-state selection.

"We are very excited for these young student-athletes to join our program," said Long. "They will be a big addition and help Iowa swimming become stronger in the Big Ten and on a national level."

Special thanks to Iowa for contributing this report.

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