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    Northwestern Announces Signing of Three to National Letters of Intent

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM Jimmy Tierney and the Wildcat coaching staff found depth in the areas they were looking for with the Class of 2015.
    Jimmy Tierney and the Wildcat coaching staff found depth in the areas they were looking for with the Class of 2015.

    Nov. 23, 2010

    EVANSTON, Ill. -- Northwestern head coach Jimmy Tierney announced today (Nov. 23) the signing of three future Wildcats to National Letters of Intent. Rachel Kim (Federal Way, Wash./Todd Beamer), Madeleine Klichowski (Chicago, Ill./Loyola Academy) and Hillary Thomas (Denver, Colo./Regis Jesuit) will matriculate to Evanston in the fall of 2011.

    "We are proud to announce the signings of three outstanding scholar-athletes for the 2011-12 season," Tierney said. "Each will bring valuable skills and tremendous character to our team."

    Kim is a Junior National qualifier who reached the Washington state meet in all four of her high school seasons. She won the state title in 2008 as a member of her high school's 200 free relay, but will contribute right away for the Wildcats in the backstroke.

    "Rachel is a talented 100 and 200 backstroker who will have an immediate impact on our program," Tierney said. "She developed her talent with the famous King Aquatic program in Seattle under star Olympic coach Sean Hutchison and more recently Tommy Hannan. Rachel easily fit in with our team on her visit and will be a great team member for the next four years."

    Klichowski also is a Junior National qualifier backstroke specialist who earned Illinois all-state first team honors from 2007-10. She was named the Metro Catholic Aquatic Conference Scholar Swimmer of the Year in 2010.

    "Madeleine also strengthens our team right away in both backstroke events, an area we were determined to add depth to in this class," Tierney said. "She was so excited about her interest in NU and truly wanted to be a Wildcat well before her senior year. We love to sign a top local talent and are delighted to secure one from Loyola Academy and New Trier Swim Club, two of Illinois' finest programs."

    Thomas is a seven-time all-American who finished second in the 200 free at the Colorado state meet as a junior. A Junior National qualifier in both short course and long course, she already holds her school's record in the 200 free.



    "Hillary has emerged in recent years as one of Colorado's finest 100 and 200 freestylers," Tierney said. "We can't wait to have Hillary join our Wildcat family and bring her energy and passion for swimming and life. She will immediately improve our free relays, one of our top priorities this recruiting season. We look forward to four productive and fun years with Hillary."

    Complete biographies for Northwestern's incoming class of 2012 are below:

    Rachel Kim
    5-3 • Backstroke
    Federal Way, Wash./Todd Beamer

    High School: Qualified for the Washington state meet in all four of her high school seasons ... Won the state title with the 200 free relay in 2008 ... Holds records in the 200 free, 200 IM, 100 back, 500 free, 100 breast, 200 free relay, 200 medley relay and 400 medley relay ... Earned team MVP and team Ironman status as a junior and senior ... Has competed with King Aquatic Club since 2003 ... Junior National qualifier ... Coached by Sean Hutchison and Tommy Hannan ... Honor roll and National Honor Society member.

    Personal: Born Rachel Hayoung Kim ... Daughter of Yohan and Jiwon Kim ... Chose Northwestern over Rutgers and Arizona State ... Anticipated major is undecided.

    Madeleine Klichowski
    5-6 • Backstroke
    Chicago, Ill./Loyola Academy

    High School: Illinois all-state first team from 2007-10 along with All-Metro Catholic Aquatic Conference (MCAC) first team those seasons as well ... MCAC Scholar Swimmer of the Year in 2010 ... USA Swimming Scholastic All-America in 2009 and 2010 ... All-America Inter-scholastic swim team from 2007-09 ... Team placed fifth at the IHSA state meet in 2007 and ninth in 2009 ... Set an MCAC record with the medley relay in 2010 ... Has competed with the New Trier Swim Club since 2007 ... Junior National qualifier ... USA Silver medal club ... Level 3 Club Recognition program ... Named to high honor roll every semester of high school (Loyola Scholar) ... Magna and Summa Cum Laude honoree on the National Latin Exam.

    Personal: Born Madeleine Paige Klichowski ... Daughter of Gregory and Amy Klichowski ... Chose Northwestern over Pennsylvania ... Plans to major in engineering.

    Hillary Thomas
    5-8 • Freestyle
    Denver, Colo./Regis Jesuit

    High School: Seven-time all-American ... Named All-City in each of her first three seasons of high school competition ... Earned a second-place finish in the 200 free as a junior at the Colorado state meet ... Holds her school's record in the 200 free with a 1:49.65 ... Voted team's hardest worker (Iron woman award) ... Has competed with S.T.A.R.S. and Denver Swim Academy Clubs since 2005 ... Long Course and Short Course Junior Nationals qualifier ... Scholastic all-American ... Two-year member of the National Honor Society ... Select honor roll member ... Participant in her high school's elite seminar program ... Eleanor Roosevelt Award winner for excellence in social studies.

    Personal: Born Hillary Dawson Thomas ... Daughter of Larry and Debbie Thomas ... Chose Northwestern over Denver, Dartmouth and Kenyon ... Plans to major in English.