Three Swimmers, One Diver Sign with Broncos
BOISE, Idaho – The Boise State swimming and diving received four national letters of intent, announced head coach Kristin Hill. Olivia Harrel, Chelsea Miller, Rachel Heaney and Ciera Cortney will all join the team as freshman in fall 2010.
“We have some needs to fill with Lauren Keele, Chelsea Lopus and Katelyn Lofland graduating this year, and we worked hard to find the right recruits to fill those needs,” said Hill. “All three of these swimmers, as well as Ciera in diving, have a realistic shot at being individual WAC Champions and representing Boise State at the NCAA Championships.”
Harrell, a native of Springfield, Mo., is a standout freestyler from Glendale High School and Missouri State Aquatics. She has been a top-5 finisher in both the 100 and 200 free at the Missouri State Championships in each of the past two year, finishing as high as second in the 200 free in the 2008 meet. Harrell was also part of the 200 medley relay team that won the state title in 2009. In addition, she earned a spot on the National Interscholastic Swim Coaches Association All-America team for the 200 medley relay and 200 free in 2009, and qualified for the National Club Swimming Association Junior Nationals in the 100 and 200 free in each of the past two years.
“I chose Boise State because it is taking big steps in the swimming world and I want to be a part of that,” said Harrell. “Boise State swimming has a great coaching staff and the team is very close.”
“Olivia has her winter nationals cut in the 200 free (1:51.61) and a junior national cut in the 100 free (51.91). As she grows in our program we also feel she'll be a strength in the 200 IM and 100 fly,” said Hill. “We can't wait to have Olivia here in the fall - she will be a great teammate and I really look forward to the opportunity to coach her and help her set her sights on some big goals.”
Miller, a breaststroker from San Antonio, Texas, is a highly decorated prep athlete. The high school standout holds five school records at Tom C. Clark High School in the 100 and 200 breast, 200 fly and 200 and 400 IM. She has also been named the District 27-5A Swimmer of the Year two times in her career as well as qualifying for the state championships twice. She also holds the short course records for the 100 and 200 breast and the long course records for the 50, 100 and 200 breast for her club team, Alamo Area Aquatics. In addition to all her records, Miller holds national cuts in the 200 IM as well as the 100 and 200 breast events. She has served as a team captain and is a three-year member of the honor roll.
“I chose Boise State because I was looking for a team with real drive,” said Miller. “Every member of the team knows that they can help make this program great and that pushes each member to become the absolute best that they can be.”
“Chelsea is going to really challenge our top breaststrokers and IM swimmers, and although her breast and IM stand out on top, she is also a very good butterflyer, commented Hill. “Chelsea has set her sights beyond NCAA swimming and would like to represent the United States at the international level. As our program has grown, this is the kind of focus we've been developing and we welcome Chelsea's goals to be one of the best in the nation.”
Heaney joins the Broncos as an athletic and academic standout from North Bend, Ore. She is a three-time Oregon state champion from Oregon Coast Technology School and was named her team’s MVP as a sophomore and a junior. Heaney also helped the 200 medley relay set the school record as a freshman in 2007 en route to a team state championship. She also qualified for Junior Nationals last year with national cuts in the 100 and 200 fly. In the classroom, Heaney has been on the honor roll for ever term of her high school career and was named a Scholastic All-American for 2007-08 and 2008-09 school years.
“I chose Boise State for their highly motivated swim team and the school’s dedication to their student-athletes’ success,” said Heaney. “The coaches compliment each other well. I can’t wait to contribute to the Broncos and represent Boise State University.”
“Rachel had an outstanding summer and she will make an immediate impact on our team as a butterflyer and freestyler,” commented Hill. “Rachel is one of those swimmers who you know will be a good teammate as she sees past her own immediate needs and wants to do things for the team. That's exciting because that's something we've focused on here that has allowed us to have the success we are seeing this season.”
Cortney will join the diving squad from the Rebel Dive Club in Las Vegas, Nev. She is a highly decorated diver at the prep level. Cortney is a three-time Nevada state champion as well as the record holder at the Championships. In addition to her titles, she is a High School All-American and a nation qualifier. Also a standout in the classroom, Cortney will graduate in the spring as a member of the National Honors Society.
“I really enjoyed the team atmosphere combined with the excellence in academics, athletics and tradition at Boise State,” stated Cortney.
“Ciera is one of the top divers to come out of the state of Nevada, finishing first in the state in 2007, 2008 and 2009,” said Hill. “Her club diving experience with Rebel Dive Club and Julie Weddle set her apart, as she was a 2009 USA Summer Zone qualifier and a 2009 AAU Nationals finalist on both 1 meter and 3 meter boards. All of our divers and swimmers agreed that Ciera would be a great team member and that she understands our team focus.”
Coach Hill and the Broncos feel that this recruiting class will further the program as it continues to improve into its fifth season. The Broncos are already on a roll this year with an 11-3 record in dual meets and a 5-1 record against WAC teams.
“It has to be about more than just times and scores as there are a lot of fast swimmers and great divers out there,” explained Hill. We were focused on character, academic excellence, an understanding of what it means to be a part of a team, and work ethic. All four of these new Broncos fit these characteristics well and we are so excited to welcome them to Boise.”
The Broncos return to action on Dec. 4-6 at the Missouri Invitational and will next host a meet on Jan. 23 against in-state rival, Idaho.
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