April 16, 2003
BERKELEY- - The University of California women's swimming team announced its annual team awards at a banquet held Sunday, Apr. 6 at the Claremont Hotel and Spa in Berkeley. Junior Natalie Coughlin took home the Most Valuable Performer award for the third consecutive year.
This past collegiate season, Coughlin became the NCAA's first three-time titilist in the 100-yard butterfly, 100 back and 200 back. She owns the American and NCAA record in each of those events. In all, Coughlin broke three world, seven American and three NCAA records during the 2002-03 season. She was honored with her third-consecutive NCAA Swimmer of the Year award and was also named the 2002 Swimmer of the Year by USA Swimming and the 2002 Female World Swimmer of the Year by Swimmer's World magazine.
The Coaches Award went to freshman Helen Silver who had an impressive debut season. In her first year on the squad, Silver reached the NCAA finals helping the 400 medley relay team to a third-place finish and season-best time of 3:34.95. She also placed third in the 100 back consolation finals in a lifetime best of 54.25, which is good for fifth-place on Cal's all-time top performances chart. Silver also owns the seventh-fastest time in Cal's history in the 200 back (1:57.81).
The Golden Bear Award, which is given to the swimmer that demonstrates the strongest combination of athletics, scholarship and leadership in and out of the pool, was given to sophomore Lisa Morelli. During the 2002-03 season, Morelli posted the second-fastest time in the 200 fly (2:01.99) and third-fastest time in the 100 back (57.44) and 1650 free (17:03.25).
Freshman Kate Tiedeman took home the Most Improved Award and sophomore Marcelle Miller was honored with the Academic Award. Tiedeman was one of the Bears' top distance freestylers, owning the second-fastest times on the team in the 500 (4:48.94) and 1650 free (16:37.38). Miller was a 2003 NCAA qualifier and recorded Cal's second-fastest times in the 100 (1:04.21) and 200 breast (2:15.06). Her time in the 200 breast is the fifth fastest in Cal history.
Senior Christina Flynn earned the Most Outstanding Diver award. Flynn finishes her career at Cal as a three-time competitor at the NCAA Zone E Diving Championships.
MVP-Natalie Coughlin, Jr.
Golden Bear-Lisa Morelli, So.
Coaches Award-Helen Silver, Fr.
Most Improved-Kate Tiedeman, Fr.
Academic-Marcelle Miller, So.
Outstanding Diver-Christina Flynn, Sr.