Queens Swimming and Diving Accepts Invitation to White House to Honor National Championship Team

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The Queens Swimming and Diving team celebrate an 800 free relay NCAA title in 2019. Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

The reigning Division II NCAA champions Queens swimming and diving teams have accepted an invitation to the White House. Queens is the only Division II program that will be honored at the 11:00 am., Nov. 22, 2019 event. The 22 Queens swimmers and alumni will celebrate their achievement alongside additional Division I champions.

Securing five straight NCAA Division II championships is a significant achievement and being honored at the White House is a sports tradition that dates back to 1865. We are proud of our athletes for earning this high level of recognition. Cherie Swarthout, Director of Athletics at Queens, said “We are proud of these young women and men for what they have accomplished. It is an unprecedented achievement, especially considering the Queens swim program was launched in 2010 and our swimmers did not have their own pool until 2013. We are thankful for the outstanding leadership and vision of our head coach Jeff Dugdale and congratulate our swimmers and coaches for earning this honor.”

Jeff Dugdale, Associate Athletic Director for Strategic Planning and Partnerships and Director of Swimming, “I am very thankful for this honor because our University is clear that we are in the business of people and experiences and this is another experience amongest the many experiences they have been afforded. We look forward to representing our university, our program, and ourselves on this special occasion.”

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Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Queens swimming and diving won both the men’s and women’s national championships last season, achieving six men’s Division II records and five women’s records. Marius Kusch had the fastest time in the entire NCAA last season with a 44.32 in the 100 fly, finishing quicker than the Division I national champion Vini Lanza of Indiana. Kusch also broke records in the 100 free (41.73), 100 back (45.49) and led off the 400 free relay record setting team (2:49.98). Alex Kunert took records in the 1000 free (8:56.76) and the 200 fly (1:41.19).

The women’s team was just as dominant, racking up 707.5 points at NCAAs last year which was more than double the amount of second place Drury (345). The Queens women notably swept the top five spots in the 100 back, amassing 82 points in just one heat. Polina Lapshina broke the Division II record in the 100 back (52.07) and also the 100 fly (52.16) and 100 free (48.16). She led off the record setting 400 medley relay team (3:35.70) and the 400 free relay team (3:18.04).

— The above press release was posted by Swimming World in conjunction with Queens Swimming and Diving. For press releases and advertising inquiries please contact Advertising@SwimmingWorld.com.