May 6, 2014
EVANSTON, Ill. – Northwestern head coach Jimmy Tierney and the Wildcats women’s swimming team hosted the team’s end-of-season banquet on Sunday.
Three ‘Cats took home season awards at the team’s banquet. Freshman Lauren Abruzzo (Denver, Colo./Kent Denver) was named the team’s Most Valuable Swimmer. Sophomore Julianne Kurke (Atlanta, Ga./Parkview) took home the Most Improved Award and senior Jackie Powell (Madison, Wis./James Madison Memorial) won the Kathie Wickstrand Spirit Award.
Most Valuable: Lauren Abruzzo
qualified for the NCAA Championships as a freshman, where she competed in the mile, 400 IM and 500 free. Abruzzo earned a trip after finishing No. 4 in the mile during the Big Ten Championships. She swam six NCAA “B” Cut times during the year. During the TYR Invite in Evanston in November, she set the Wildcats records with school best times in the 1,000 free (9:48.17) and the 1,650 free (16:10.40).
Most Improved: Julianne Kurke led the ‘Cats in the 100 breast, 200 breast, where she finished in the top 15 in both categories during the Big Ten Championships to reach the consolation finals. Kurke was on the ‘Cats fastest 400 medley relay team. Kurke was also named Academic All-Big Ten.
Kathie Wickstrand Spirit Award: Jackie Powell, and three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection, a senior captain for the Wildcats, led the team in the 50, 100 and 200 free and also swam on NU’s top 200 free, 400 free and 800 free relay teams. An CoSIDA Academic All-American nominee, Powell was instrumental, along with teammate Megan Goss, in organizing the incredibly successful "Breaststroke4BreastCancer" event beginning in October of 2012 that raised more five digits of money for local cancer research since it began two years ago.
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