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April 4, 2013
GREENSBORO, N.C. (theACC.com) - The Atlantic Coast Conference has honored 10 individuals as recipients of the 2013 ACC Swimming & Diving annual awards, announced Thursday by the conference office. The winners were determined by a vote of the league's head coaches.
North Carolina garnered three accolades as Tom Luchsinger and Cari Blalock swept the Swimmer of the Year honors for the Tar Heels and Rich DeSelm was named the Women's Coach of the Year. Luke Papendick and Courtney Bartholomew won the Freshman of the Year honors for Virginia, and NC State's Braden Holloway was named the Men's Coach of the Year.
Duke's Nick McCrory, the Men's Diver of the Year, and Drew Johansen, the Men's Diving Coach of the Year, were honored, while Miami's Kara McCormack and coach Randy Ableman won the women's diving awards.
Luchsinger is the first Tar Heel since 1996, and fifth overall, to be named ACC Men's Swimmer of the Year. A senior from Mt. Sinai, N.Y., he won the ACC title in the 200 butterfly in meet record time. He was victorious in the 400 individual medley and took silver in the 200 IM. In his final appearance at the NCAA Championship, Luchsinger finished in a career-best fifth place in the 200 butterfly and earned Honorable Mention All-America accolades in the 400 IM.
Blalock, a junior from Wilmington, N.C., tallied 34 points in individual events at the NCAA Women's Championship, the most for any ACC athlete at the meet. She finished in eighth in the 400 IM and 10th in the 200 IM, both in ACC-record times, and placed third in the 200 butterfly. At the conference meet, Blalock was the ACC champion in both the 200 butterfly and 400 IM. Blalock is the second Tar Heel to be named ACC Women's Swimmer of the Year in the past two seasons.
After starting his year with a bronze medal at the London Olympics, McCrory finished it with a national championship on the platform and two second-place finishes on the springboard to earn his ninth All-America accolade. The native of Chapel Hill, N.C., was named the ACC Men's Championship Most Valuable Diver after becoming the first male to sweep the three diving events. With his seventh career conference victory, he is now the winningest diver in ACC history and is the first to earn ACC Men's Championship Most Valuable Diver honors three times in a career. This is his third ACC Men's Diver of the Year award.
With McCormack as the ACC Women's Diver of the Year, it marks the fifth season in the nine-year history of the award that a Hurricane has captured the honor. McCormack collected 17 points at the NCAA Championship with a sixth place finish on the platform and 13th on the 1-meter. A sophomore from Austin, Texas, she won the conference title on the platform, and finished third in the 1-meter and seventh in the 3-meter at the ACC Championship.
Papendick, the Men's Freshman of the Year, garnered his first All-America accolade in the 200 backstroke, winning the consolation final to finish in ninth in the event. At the ACC Championship, the native of Kinnelon, N.J., won the silver medal in the 200 backstroke, finishing just .07 seconds behind the winner.
A two-time individual ACC Champion in her first season, Bartholomew is the second straight Cavalier to be named ACC Women's Freshman of the Year. In her first NCAA Championship appearance, the native of Holland, Mich., won the consolation final of the 100 backstroke and placed 10th in the 200 back. At the conference meet in February, Bartholomew swept the backstroke events to help the Cavaliers defend their team title.
The first NC State coach to be named ACC Men's Coach of the Year since 1992, Holloway oversaw a Wolfpack squad which placed fifth at the ACC Championship before finishing the season as the highest ACC team at the NCAA Championship. NC State had two individual swimmers and four relays earn All-America honors as the Wolfpack's NCAA showing was its best since 1979.
DeSelm led the Tar Heel women to an ACC-best 12th place finish at the NCAA meet, the best for North Carolina since 2001. The Heels compiled 10 individual and two relay finishes in the top 16 nationally as 10 North Carolina swimmers earned All-America honors. This is DeSelm's second straight ACC Women's Coach of the Year award.
Johansen, the Men's Diving Coach of the Year, guided two Duke divers to qualify for the NCAA Championship and mentored McCrory in his historic year. He coached senior Jordan Long to the best year of his career, as he finished eighth on the 3-meter at the ACC Championship and qualified for the NCAA for the first time. All six Duke divers - four men and two women - scored points at the ACC Championships. Johansen served as the head coach of the United States Diving team at the London Olympics, where the team won four medals.
Ableman, the Women's Diving Coach of the Year, led a Miami diving program that earned 36 points at the NCAA Championship. Three Hurricanes - Carrie Dragland, Lindsay Lester, and McCormack - garnered All-America accolades, the most of any school in the nation. This trio of divers finished in the top 8 of all three diving disciplines at the ACC Championships, earning a combined 140 points.