Suzanne Lizzotte, the University of Maine’s head swimming coach, describes her 2019-20 recruiting class as a very talented group.
“They will have an immediate impact. We focused on strengthening the events and strokes where we graduated swimmers and divers as well as on building depth across individual events and relays,” Lizzotte said of the 18 recruits.
“They all exemplify the qualities and attitudes that we value as Black Bear swimmers and divers,” she said.
Among the class are three swimmers from Maine: Ellsworth’s Camden Holmes, Bangor’s Rachel Hand and Old Town’s Emily Ketch.
“I am really pleased to have three Maine swimmers who have committed to continue their swimming careers as Black Bears,” Lizzotte said.
The class also includes recruits from Arizona, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Virginia and Canada,
“The quality of Maine’s academic programs along with an opportunity to compete at Division I is very attractive to those who select our program,” Lizzotte said.
Distance freestyle is one event where the men’s class appears to be fast and deep. Thomas LaFrance from Lancaster, Massachusetts, enters with a time of 9 minutes, 41 seconds in the 1,000 freestyle, and Michigan’s Evan Bartow has clocked a 9:49. Quintin Cheadle offers a 9:50 in the 1,000 free and a 16:33 in the 1,650 free.
Breaststroker competitors were a focus in the women’s swimming recruiting effort.
Morgan Bui of Ottawa, Ontario (1:06 in the 100 breaststroke), Kayla Laughman of Reading, Massachusetts (1:07 in the 100 breaststroke), and Molly Olzinski (1:08 in the 100 breaststroke) of Edwell, New York, are expected to strengthen the 50, 100, and 200 breaststroke events.
“I am excited about the versatility of the women’s class. In addition to the breaststroke, there are quality swimmers in the butterfly, individual medley and distance free, ” Lizzotte said.