BERKELEY – The Cal women’s swimming & diving team, winner of three of the past five NCAA championships and currently the No. 1-ranked team in the country, added another strong recruiting class to its roster with the signing of five talented swimmers to National Letters of Intent Wednesday. Joining the coach Teri McKeever’s Golden Bear squad as freshmen for the 2014-15 season are Catherine Ladd, Jasmine Mau, Maija Roses, Cierra Runge and Noemie Thomas.
Bringing proficiency and support in all four strokes, they hail from four different states spanning from Hawaii and California in the West to North Carolina and Pennsylvania in the East, as well as north to British Columbia. Runge (100-meter freestyle) and Roses (100- and 200-meter breaststroke) are both members of the U.S. Junior National team, while Thomas represented Canada at the 2013 World Championships and placed seventh in the 100-meter butterfly.
“I am incredibly excited about these five student-athletes and their ability to impact our program as outstanding swimmers and people,” McKeever said. “I see them as tremendous compliments to our returning team. They are excellent students who understand the academic responsibility and opportunity that awaits them at Cal. Their diverse backgrounds – in where they are from, the kind of training they've had and who they are as people – will enrich our team immensely. I cannot wait to begin coaching our next generation of Golden Bears.”
Ladd, a freestyle specialist, is the lone local product as she hails from San Jose and is a member of the Santa Clara Swim Club. As a junior last season, she won the 100-yard free at the Central Coast Section meet with a time of 49.74. Ladd also took second in the 200 free in 1:48.46. At the 2012 Winter Junior Nationals meet, she helped SCSC to a victory in the 800 free relay with a meet-record time of 7:18.56.
A versatile swimmer from Honolulu, Mau was the only person to win two individual titles at last year’s Hawaii state meet, placing first in the 200 individual medley (2:01.78) and 100 butterfly (52.78). Rated the No. 6 recruit in the country by swimswam.com, she took third in the 100-meter free at 2013 U.S. Junior Nationals in 56.18.
Roses is a breaststroker out of Chapel Hill, N.C., who won the 200 breast (2:31.77) and took third in the 100 breast (1:09.56) at the 2013 U.S. Junior Nationals meet. She won a bronze medal as a member of the 400 medley relay at the 2013 World Junior Championships, and earlier participated in the 2012 Olympic Trials in both breaststroke events.
Runge won four medals at the World Junior Championships this past August in Dubai – gold in the 800 free relay, silver in the mixed 400 free relay, and bronze in both the 400 free relay and 400 medley relay. Consider the nation’s No. 5 recruit by collegeswimming.com, the Cochranville, Pa., product who swims for the North Baltimore Aquatic Club placed in the top 15 in both the 400 free (15th, 4:14.40) and 200 IM (14th, 2:16.03) at U.S. Nationals last summer.
Thomas is a butterfly specialist who hails from Richmond, British Columbia. Last summer, she took seventh in the 100-meter fly in 58.13 at the World Championships in Barcelona. She won two medals at the 2012 Junior Pan Pacific Championships and set a Canadian record in the 50 fly (25.60) at the 2012 World Short-Course Championships.
Cal Recruit Profiles
San Jose, CA / Willow Glen HS / Santa Clara Swim Club
As a junior, won the 100-yard freestyle at the 2013 Central Coast Section meet with a time of 49.74, while she also finished second in the 200 free in 1:48.46 … helped her Santa Clara Swim Club team to a victory in the 800 free relay (meet-record 7:18.56) at the 2012 Winter Junior Nationals meet … a 2013 Scholastic All-American … member of the San Jose Mercury-News 2013 All-Star team … Willow Glen HS MVP … older brother, John, is a Cal graduate.
Honolulu, HI / Punahou School / Kamehameha Swim Club
Took third in the 100-meter free at 2013 U.S. Junior Nationals in 56.18 … was the only double-winner at the 2013 Hawaii state meet last year, capturing the 200 individual medley in 2:01.78 and the 100 butterfly in 52.78 … owns the Hawaii record in the butterfly … considered the No. 6 recruit in the country by swimswam.com and No. 7 recruit by collegeswimming.com … top yard times include 1:56.6 in the 200 fly and 49.0 in the 100 free.
Chapel Hill, NC / Cannon HS / SWIM MAC
Member of the U.S. Junior National Team in the 100- and 200-meter breaststroke … won a bronze medal in the 400-meter medley relay (swimming in prelims) at the 2013 FINA World Junior Championships … captured the 200 breast in 2:31.77 at the 2013 USA Junior Nationals meet … took third in the 100 breast in 1:09.56 ... participated in the 2012 Olympic Trials in both breaststroke events … has won North Carolina state titles in the 100 breast and 200 individual medley … the state record-holder in the 100 breast … top yards times are 1:01.86 in the 100 breast and 2:13.19 in the 200 breast.
Cochranville, PA / Octorara Area High School / North Baltimore Aquatic Club
Member of the U.S. Junior National team in the 100-meter freestyle … won four medals at the 2013 FINA World Junior Championships – gold in the 800 free relay, silver in the mixed 400 free relay, and bronze in both the 400 free relay and 400 medley relay … rated the No. 5 recruit in the country by collegeswimming.com … took 15th in the 400 free in 4:14.40 at the 2013 U.S. Nationals meet, while she was 14th in the 200 individual medley in 2:16.03 … at the 2012 Olympic Trials, placed 25th in the 100 free and 26th in the 50 free … also competed in the 200 and 400 free … owns a best of 26.16 in the 50 free … top time of 55.16 in the 100 free ranks seventh all-time in the U.S. 17-18 age group, with two future Cal teammates ahead of her on the list (freshman Missy Franklin, 1st, 53.36; sophomore Elizabeth Pelton, 6th, 55.04).
Richmond, BC / Magee Secondary School / UBC Dolphins/National Swim Center
A finalist in the 100-meter butterfly representing Canada at the 2013 FINA World Championships in Barcelona, finishing seventh in 58.13 … also took 25th in the 50 fly (26.88) … member of the Canadian National Team … set a Canadian record in the 50 fly at the 2012 World Short-Course Championships (25.60), finishing fourth by just 0.05 seconds … also took fourth in the 100 fly … picked up a pair of medals at the 2012 Junior Pan Pacific Championships, winning gold in the 100 fly and silver in the 400 medley relay.