Northwestern Signs Ten to National Letters of Intent

EVANSTON, Illinois, December 2. NORTHWESTERN head coach Jimmy Tierney and head diving coach Alik Sarkisian announced today the addition of 10 future Wildcats to the program through the signing of National Letters of Intent. The group is comprised of seven swimmers and three divers who will matriculate to Evanston in the fall of 2010.

The class marks the third time in the last four years Northwestern has signed double-digit future 'Cats to NLIs. The Class of 2012 boasted 10 signees and the Class of 2011 held 11. These groups have exponentially improved the depth of the program and have been largely orchestrated by fourth-year associate head coach and recruiting coordinator Nichole Ellis.

The Class of 2014 swimmers are: Fallon Fitzpatrick (Delray Beach, Fla./Boca Raton Community), Sarah Goss (Brentwood, Tenn./Ravenwood), Ruthie Norval (Austin, Texas/Westlake), Jackie Powell (Madison, Wis./James Madison Memorial), Emily Russart (Lake Geneva, Wis./Badger), Becca Soderholm (Madison, Wis./Madison East) and Erin Sosdian (The Woodlands, Texas/Woodlands College Park). The divers are: Mary Kate Campbell (Burr Ridge, Ill./Fenwick), Cosima Lenz (Altadena, Calif./Polytechnic School) and Hannah Singer (New Canaan, Conn./New Canaan).

Following are complete bios for each future Wildcat along with quotes from Tierney and Sarkisian on each student-athlete:

Mary Kate Campbell
Burr Ridge, Ill./Fenwick
5-3 • Diving

High School: NISCA All-American all three years from 2006-08 and all-state from 2007-08 … MCAC diving champion in 2006 and 2008-09 … Named MCAC Diver of the Year in 2006 … Has competed in regional, zone and national competitions since the age of eight … At the 2008 Age Group Nationals, finished third on the platform, 10th on the 3-meter springboard and 13th on the 1-meter springboard … School record holder in both 6- and 11-dive meets … Also holds school's pool record for 11 dives … Competed with the Chicago Dive Club beginning in 2000 … National Honor Society member … Honor roll … LeMoyne College Heights and J Kyle Braid Leadership awards winner.

Personal: Born Mary Katherine Campbell on 7/14/92 … Daughter of Daniel and Katherine Campbell … Sister of former Northwestern diver Beth Campbell … Father graduated from NU in 1977 … Chose Northwestern over Notre Dame, Wisconsin and Michigan … Plans to major in English or communications.

Says Sarkisian: "Mary Kate practically grew up here at Northwestern while competing on our club diving team and watching her sister Beth dive for us. She is an outstanding young lady and will fit in real well with both divers and swimmers here in the coming years. No doubt she is going to get better with more training in our program."

Fallon Fitzpatrick
Delray Beach, Fla./Boca Raton Community
5-10 • Butterfly

High School: Named all-county first team … All-America consideration times … Team's MVP in 2006 and 2007 … State champion with the 200 medley and 400 free relays, setting school records in each … Individually broke the school record in the 100 fly … High school has won two team state titles … Swam club with Fort Lauderdale Aquatics, earning senior and junior national qualification times … 2008-09 Scholastic All-America … National Honors Society member and AP Scholar … Honor roll all four years of high school.

Personal: Born Fallon Margaret Fitzpatrick on 7/21/1992 … Daughter of Jacqueline and Brian Fitzpatrick … Chose Northwestern over Michigan and Florida State … Plans to major in biology with pre-medicine studies.

Says Tierney: "Fallon was a prospect we knew little about before this fall. On her recruiting trip she quickly became one of the favorites of our team and staff. She will immediately fit in well with our team. Fallon has the speed in the butterfly that we were looking for and will no doubt be a player for us in the Big Ten."

Sarah Goss
Brentwood, Tenn./Ravenwood
5-7 • Freestyle

High School: U.S. Open qualifier in the 1,000 free and 200 breast … 2009 World Trials qualifier in the 800-meter freestyle … All-America in 2009 in the 500 free, 200 IM and with her high school's medley relay … 2009 state champion in the 500 free, the first swimming state champ ever from Ravenwood … Also finished third in the 200 IM at the 2009 state meet … Holds school records in the 500 free and 200 IM … School's most valuable swimmer in 2008-09 and coach's award winner in 2007-08 … Also ran cross country for one year in 2006, setting a school record … Swam club with the Nashville Aquatic Club starting in 2003 … High point runner-up at the 2009 Southeastern Short Course Championship … Junior National team … Southeastern All-Star Zone team from 2006-08 … Senior Vice President and Junior President of the Mu Alpha Theta Math Honor Society … National Honor and Spanish Honor Societies member … President of the Health Occupation Students of America (HOSA) … Principal's list.

Personal: Born Sarah Megan Goss on 10/23/1991 … Daughter of Walt and Peggy Goss … Chose Northwestern over Duke … Plans to major in pre-medicinal studies.

Says Tierney: "Sarah is a product of Nashville Swim Club and Coach John Morse who has produced numerous elite level swimmers. She has a somewhat unique set of talents with a great distance ability and a very competitive 200 breaststroke. I think she'll help raise the level of our workouts daily and contribute immediately in competition for the `Cats."

Cosima Lenz
Altadena, Calif./Polytechnic School
5-3 • Diving

High School: All-America in each of the last three years … Two-time CIF champion … Also has been a league champion with a record-breaking performance, league runner-up and CIF runner-up … Has competed with the USC Trojan Dive Club for the previous four years … Member of the 2009 USA Junior National championship team which also finished second in 2008 … AP Scholar.

Personal: Born Cosima Daria Lenz on 12/22/92 … Daughter of Dr. Maria Petrig-Lenz and Dr. Heinz-Josef Lenz … Sister, Felicitas, is a freshman on Northwestern's women's swimming and diving team … Chose Northwestern over UCLA … Anticipated major is undecided.

Says Sarkisian: "We are thrilled to add another very talented member of the Lenz diving family. Ever since we met Cosima through the recruitment of her sister Felicitas, we knew that she would become a major target in our recruiting efforts. We think she will immediately improve our diving program and help all of our divers raise their level of performance each day in the pool. NU diving should now be recognized among the nation's elite diving programs!"

Ruthie Norval
Austin, Texas/Westlake
5-6 • Backstroke

High School: All-district and all-region as a freshman, sophomore and junior … All-state and NISCA top-16 award as a sophomore and junior … Swam with the state champion 400 free relay in 2009 … High school won the state title in 2007 and 2008 before finishing fifth in 2009 … Swam club from 2000-09 with Longhorn Aquatics … Made Nationals cuts in the 100 and 200 backstroke events in 2009 … Earned Junior Nationals cuts in the 100 back, 200 back and 800 free in 2008-09 … National Honor Society member … Scholastic All-American in 2007-08 and 2008-09.

Personal: Born Ruth Norval on 10/14/1991 … Daughter of Debbie and Andy Norval … Chose Northwestern over Rice and Carnegie Mellon … Plans to major in engineering.

Says Tierney: "Ruthie seemed to be a perfect fit for NU once we met her. She is a talented student-athlete who should thrive in this school and team environment. We'll look for her to rise to the challenge with our current backstroke group and hopefully become a Big Ten scorer in the future. No doubt she will improve greatly in the coming years."

Jackie Powell
Madison, Wis./James Madison Memorial
5-7 • Freestyle/Backstroke

High School: Two-time individual state champion in the 200 free and 100 back … Also a state champ in the 400 freestyle relay … Holds school records in the 200 medley relay, 100 free, 200 free, 100 back, 500 free and 400 free relay … Multiple-time all-America and Madison All-Area team selections … Three-time team MVP … James Madison Memorial has won four conference dual-meet titles, four conference championships, three sectional titles and has one state runner-up finish during Powell's career … Has swum 10 years with the Badger Aquatics Club … National age group record holder in the 200 free relay … Played competitive club soccer until high school, winning a club state championship … Member of the High Honor Roll, National Honors Society and Spanish Honors Society … AP Scholar.

Personal: Born Jacqueline Maureen Powell on 11/24/1991 … Daughter of Maureen and Don Powell … Brother, Nick, plays soccer at Butler … Chose Northwestern over Harvard, Notre Dame and Wisconsin … Plans to major in mathematics.

Says Tierney: "We have been impressed with Jackie since watching her several years ago with Badger Aquatics under Coach Drew Walden. We targeted her very early and were immediately impressed with her talents as a swimmer and a student. She has tremendous speed and is a great racer. I'm counting on her jumping right into our talented sprint group and elevating our relays."

Emily Russart
Lake Geneva, Wis./Badger
5-8 • Breaststroke

High School: All-American in the 100 breast and 200 medley relay … Finished first in the 100 breast and sixth in the 200 breast at the National YMCA meet … Broke the USA Swimming state record for 15-16-year-olds in the 100-meter breaststroke and the YMCA state record in the short course yards 100 breaststroke … Named 2008 Southern Lakes Conference Athlete of the Year … Wisconsin Interscholastic Coaches Association All-State in the 100 breast, 200 IM, 200 medley relay and 200 free relay … Team MVP for three years.

Personal: Born Emily Robin Russart on 11/21/1991 … Daughter of Robin and Jeff Russart.

Says Tierney: "Emily was a prime target of ours from early last year. We kept hearing about this enormously talented breaststroker from Lake Geneva. Once we set eyes on her, we knew she had to become a Wildcat. She has been brought along so well by Coach Frank Scott and is primed to hit NCAA swimming in a big way. She is an excellent student and very talented musician. Emily has a bright future with Northwestern Swimming."

Hannah Singer
New Canaan, Conn./New Canaan
5-7 • Diving

High School: Was a gymnast for nine years before switching to diving in her freshman year of high school … Broke a personal record in winning silver at the CIAC Class M diving finals in November of 2009 … All-conference, all-state and all-America in 2008 … Also named all-conference in 2009 … Team captain in 2008-09 … School record holder … Began club diving with Whirlwind Diving in 2007 … 2009 Spring National and summer Zone A qualifier … National Honor Society member … Honor roll in every semester of high school.

Personal: Born Hannah Michal Singer on 8/11/1992 … Daughter of Gary and Susan Singer … Chose Northwestern over Michigan, Pennsylvania and Connecticut … Major is undecided.

Says Sarkisian: "We see so much potential in Hannah and are excited to get her onto campus. She did not begin diving competitively until just a few years ago, but her work ethic and commitment make the sky the limit for her. She really embraced the program during her official visit and will be a great addition to our Northwestern Swimming and Diving family."

Becca Soderholm
Madison, Wis./Madison East
5-7 • Butterfly/IM/Freestyle

High School: Member of one state championship team and two second place squads … Won state relay championship as well … Received all-America honors … Earned all-state honors three times during career … Team holds state relay record … Team captain for two seasons … Swam for Badger Aquatics Club for 10 years … Awarded club team state championship … Participated on the Junior National and National teams… Garnered High honors while completing six semesters on the Honor roll.

Personal: Born Rebecca Soderholm on 12/19/1991 … Daughter of Joe and Stacy Soderholm … Sister Abby swims for the University of Wisconsin … Chose Northwestern over Wisconsin … Anticipated major is undecided.

Says Tierney: "We hit it big in Wisconsin this year! Becca is a teammate of Jackie Powell at Badger Aquatics. She was our last commitment this fall and NU is so lucky to have her. Becca is a butterfly specialist with untapped potential in the 400 IM and will bring a great attitude and spirit to our program. She'll fit in very well with our returning `Cats."

Erin Sosdian
The Woodlands, Texas/Woodlands College Park
5-10 • Freestyle

High School: All-America honoree and team's most valuable female swimmer in 2006-07 and 2007-08 … Named all-state in 2008-09 … Swam with the winning 800 free relay at Junior Nationals in 2008 … U.S. Open qualifier … Took fifth in the 500 free and ninth in the 200 free at the 2008 Texas state meet … Also finished seventh in the 500 free at the 2007 state meet … Swam club with The Woodlands Swim Team (TWST) beginning in 2002 … Member of the Junior National team … Qualified for the 2007-09 spring and summer Junior Nationals … Earned the Top-16 Gulf Swimming Award … National Honor Society member … National Merit Commended Scholar and AP Scholar with Distinction … 2008 Female Rotary Student of the Year … Ranked fifth in her class of 603 … Honor roll member.

Personal: Born Erin Jasper Sosdian on 12/9/1991 … Daughter of Patti and Neal Sosdian … Chose Northwestern over Notre Dame, Rice and Virginia … Plans to major in engineering.

Says Tierney: Erin just won the entire team over on her visit here. She is a very personable young lady and exudes a passion for NU already. We are counting on her to be a strong Big Ten/NCAA swimmer in the middle to distance freestyles. She has a very good base from her very successful club, The Woodlands Swim Team. We're excited to get her in with our current group to continue the distance success from the past few years."

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