May 29, 2002
ATLANTA – Georgia Tech swimming and diving head coach Seth Baron announced Wednesday that eight student-athletes, seven men and one woman, will close out the group of incoming freshman for 2002-03, bringing the total to 17 newcomers.
“We are very pleased with the overall strength and versatility of the incoming freshmen,” Baron said. “Without a doubt, this recruiting class will continue the upward movement of our swimming and diving program.”
Distance freestyler Mimi Murad of Alpharetta, Ga., (Chattahoochee H.S./Swim Atlanta) completes the second group of recruits for the Tech women’s team, which enjoyed a successful first season in 2001-02. She owns times of 5:00.00 in the 500-yard freestyle and 17:35.00 in the 1650 free. Murad also owns a mark of 9:21.16 in the long-course meters 800 free.
Three international signees highlight the men’s group. Sprinter Teemu Kettunen (Jarvenpaa, Finland/Makelanrinne H.S.) owns converted times of 20.76 in the 50 free, 45.88 in the 100 free and 49.79 in the 100 fly. High school teammates Yonatan Cohen (Neve Monoson, Israel/Hof Hasharon H.S.) and Ofir Sorias (Kibbutz Zikim, Israel/Hof Hasharon H.S.) are also on their way to The Flats. Cohen is a versatile performer with strong performances in the 50 through 400 free and a converted mark of 1:51.04 in the 200-yard individual medley. Sorias will be a solid contributor in the middle distance freestyle events, as he went a converted time of 1:39.40 in the 200 free.
Cohen and Sorias attended the same high school as current Tech All-American Shilo Ayalon. The international recruits are an example of the wide contacts made by Baron as head coach of the U.S. National Team at the Maccabiah Games in 1997 and 2001.
Another set of teammates, Brian Browning and Jacob Wilson of Kingwood, Texas, are also in the fold for next season. Both are from Kingwood High School and Blue Tide Aquatics. Browning will also contribute to the sprint events, as he owns times of 21.95 in the 50 free, 46.38 in the 100 free and 53.04 in the 100 back. Wilson will add depth in the fly and IM events, as he has recorded marks of 51.25 in the 100 fly, 1:55.64 in the 200 IM and 4:04.20 in the 400 IM.
Eric Quillen of Sangus, Calif., (Valencia Academy/Novaquatics) will also contribute in the sprint events. He has posted times of 21.22 in the 50 free, 46.55 in the 100 free and 51.46 in the 100 fly.
Diver Matthew Anderson of Twinsburg, Ohio, rounds out the men’s recruits. He competed for Twinsburg High School, as well as North Coast Diving.
“Georgia Tech, as an academic institution, is both a nationally and internationally recognized,” Baron said. “We have a great mix of student-athletes that will contribute to the academic success as well as the athletic success of our institution.”
This group joins an impressive group of early signees, including Brian Huff (Marietta, Ga.), Sam Morgan (Gainesville, Ga.) and Ryan Riebesell (Hoover, Ala.) on the men’s side.
The early commitments for the women were Meghan DeVinney (Avondale, Ariz.), Elizabeth Foster (Frankfort, Ky.), Laura Heiser (Sinking Spring, Pa.), Ashley Kracke (Vestavia Hills, Ala.), Laurissa Prystaj (Fairport, N.Y.) and Kathleen Wood (Wake Forest, N.C.).
“The coaching staff is extremely excited at the outcome of our recruiting efforts and looks forward to starting a new and exciting season at Georgia Tech,” Baron said.
With these commitments, the Jackets now have 10 men and seven women heading to Atlanta to help Tech in its second season as a combined program. The men’s team continues to impress on the national level, as the Jackets placed second at the 2002 ACC Championships and 27th at the NCAA Championships, both program bests. The women’s team went 5-6 in dual meets and sent freshman Cara DeVinny to NCAAs in its inaugural season.