March 14, 2006
Clemson, SC- Senior captain Kim Routh and freshman Michelle Parkhurst will never be recognized as twins. They don’t look alike, they aren’t from the same state, and they don’t swim the same strokes. However, these two Lady Tigers share one thing in common, the chance to put Clemson Swimming and Diving on the map at the 2006 NCAA Championships in Athens, GA.
Routh is a three-time Honorable Mention All-American and a three time ACC Champion from Sandusky, OH. She successfully defended her ACC title in the 500 freestyle this year, but fell short of pulling off the double two years in a row when she swam to a silver medal in the 1650 freestyle. Routh is the school record holder in the 1650 freestyle, and has placed 22nd, 15th, and 15th in her three previous trips to the NCAA Championships in the event. She is seeded 12th in the 500 freestyle (4:43.90), 46th in the 200 freestyle (1:48.74), and 10th in the 1650 freestyle (16:17.21) prior to the championships.
Parkhurst, hailing from Vienna, VA, has already tasted success at the collegiate level in just her first season. After claiming the Rookie-of-the-Meet honors at the 2005 Conoco Phillips Summer Nationals, she stormed into Clemson, losing only one backstroke race until the ACC meet. At the ACC Championships, Parkhurst took home a silver medal in the 100 backstroke (54.49), and a bronze in the 200 backstroke (1:57.74), both school records. These times earned her the 23rd seed in both backstroke events at the NCAA Championships. Parkhurst will also participate in the 50 freestyle (23.39) where she is seeded 66th.
Senior diver Shastin Leathers finished up her career on the boards this past weekend as she competed in the NCAA Zone “B” Diving Regional. The top nine from the regional advanced to the NCAA Championships. Only two divers from the ACC were able to move on out of the tough regional. Leathers finished her career as the school record holder on the one-meter board, a mark which she set against South Carolina earlier in the season.
The NCAA Championships will start Thursday, March 16, and will last until Saturday, March 18. Both Clemson swimmers will be in competition on Thursday as Routh will swim the 500 freestyle, and Parkhurst will sprint in the 50 freestyle. They will look to get off to a good start, as the Lady Tigers have not scored more than 10 points at the NCAA Championships in the last 10 years.
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