Nov. 12, 2010
BERKELEY - California signed a strong recruiting class of eight women's swimmers to National Letters of Intent, head coach Teri McKeever announced on Friday. Four of the newest Golden Bears hail from California, three come from outside the Golden State and one joins Cal from Hong Kong.
"The California Golden Bears are proud to announce a class of eight for the fall of 2011," McKeever said. "This class reflects a wide range of events and a very high level of talent that should make an immediate and profound impact on our program. These individuals are excellent students who will amplify the culture of the team and be an asset to the University."
McKeever's class includes four members of U.S. national youth teams. Three of the signees are members of the 2010-11 U.S. squad: Kaylin Bing, from Roseburg, Ore., Casey Mims, from Laguna Niguel, Calif., and Taylor Nanfria, a San Francisco Bay Area native from Danville, Calif. Catherine Breed, another Bay Area product from Pleasanton, Calif., joined Bing on the 2009-10 national youth team.
Both Bing and Breed will make an immediate impact on the Cal squad.
Bing (Roseburg High School/Roseburg Aquatics) will play a significant role in the sprint events and on Cal's relays. At last summer's Speedo Junior National Championships, she posted a fourth-place finish in the 50-meter freestyle with a time of 26.13. Current Cal freshman Melissa Bates placed sixth (26.45) in the same event.
Breed (Amador Valley High School/ Pleasanton Seahawks) will impact the middle-distance and distance events. A San Francisco Bay Area product, Breed has also developed her sprinting over the past year and could be a force on Cal's relays. At the 2010 Speedo junior nationals, she finished fifth in the 100-meter freestyle in a time of 56.47 and sixth in the 200-meter freestyle in a time of 2:01.57.
Mims has had a very exciting past 12 months, and McKeever is looking for that trend to continue for Mims (Serra Catholic HS/Irvine Aquazots) at Cal. Mims' top 200-meter breaststroke swim - good for third-place in a time of 2:30.52 at the 2010 Speedo Junior National Championships - was among the top times of 2011 prospects.
Nanfria is a versatile swimmer who excels in the middle-distance freestyle events, the butterfly and the IM. She qualified for the U.S. national youth team in open-water swimming. McKeever lauds her work ethic and believe that Nanfria (San Ramon Valley HS/Crow Canyon Country Club) will do great things at Cal.
Eva Greene, from McLean, Va., is a former Cal summer camper and excellent student who will add support in the backstroke events. McKeever expects Greene (McLean HS/Machine Aquatics) to bring a new perspective to the Cal squad as one of the few Bears from the East Coast on the roster next season.
Another California product, Melanie Klaren joins the Bears from Laguna Niguel. She will amplify both the freestyle and backstroke events for Cal. The versatile swimmer (Aliso Viejo HS/Mission Viejo Nadadores) will be dangerous in both individual events and relays. At the 2010 Speedo junior nationals, Klaren placed eighth, two spots behind Breed, in the 200-meter freestyle in a time of 2:02.97.
Yvette Kong is the fourth swimmer to join the Cal program from Hong Kong, and she will join countrywoman and current freshman Stephanie Au on next year's squad. Kong (Laurel HS) comes to Berkeley as a sprint breaststroker with ability in the individual medley and freestyle events. She has held both long-course and short-course records for Hong Kong in both the 100- and 200-meter breaststroke events.
Caroline Piehl, from Denver, is the third out-of-state recruit in McKeever's class. Piehl (Smoky Hill HS/Colorado Stars) is a well-rounded swimmer and impressive student. She has potential in a variety of events, including freestyle, breaststroke and individual medley, and has improved significantly in the past year.
The current Cal squad next competes in the Arena Invitational from Nov. 18-20 in Long Beach, Calif.