Cavalier Corner

April 2018

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Page 21 of 95

22 CAVALIER CORNER BY MIKE SCANDURA T HERE'S NO TRUTH TO THE rumor that the Atlantic Coast Conference is contemplating re- naming its women's swimming and diving championship meet "The University of Virginia Invitational." But in late February, the Cavaliers cap- tured the program's 10th ACC champion- ship in the last 11 years and its 15th confer- ence title overall. That was a major accomplishment for first-year head coach Todd DeSorbo. "I think it was a very smooth transition," said DeSorbo, who for the previous six years was the associate head coach at North Carolina State. "A lot of the reason was the current team, alumni and ACC knew me from being at NC State the last six years and saw what we accomplished. The NC State women upset UVA last year and ended their streak of nine consecutive ACC titles. "That gave me some instant credibility with the team. When I arrived at UVA ev- erybody bought in immediately. It was per- fect timing for me to take over the program. The athletes were the reason it was a seam- less transition. I never got any pushback and they did whatever the coaching staff asked them to do." The No. 7 Cavaliers capped their memo- rable season by placing ninth at the NCAA Championships with 161 points and 11 swimmers recording All-America honors. This group included fourth-years Megan Moroney, Jennifer Marrkand and Caitlin Cooper, each of whom earned first-team All-America accolades. That was an improvement over Virginia's performance in the 2017 NCAA Champion- ships, when the Cavaliers placed 12th with 149 points and only eight women recording All-America laurels (Marrkand was the only returning individual All-American from last season's team). "Our goal as a coaching staff was a top-10 finish," DeSorbo said. "All of our seniors were the catalyst for the program. The goal wasn't necessarily to be better as a team but on an individual basis. Our goal was to get each individual to be better than before. We felt if we could accomplish that the overall team would improve as well. "We definitely accomplished everything we expected, but those expectations changed coming off the ACC Championships." Virginia sent a program-record 19 women The Cavaliers have now won 15 ACC championships in program history. PHOTO COURTESY UVA MODEL OF CONSISTENCY The UVA Women's Swimming & Diving Program Captured Its 10th ACC Title In 11 Years And Posted A Top-10 NCAA Finish

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