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Six join Arkansas swimming and diving in 2008

BY ANDRES FOCIL
Six join Arkansas swimming and diving in 2008

FAYETTEVILLE – University of Arkansas swimming and diving head coach Jeff Poppell announced the signing of six high school seniors to national letters of intent. Katie Davis, Cai Lin Khoo, Lisa Lunkenheimer, Jillienne Schilling, Alison Templin and Katie Whitbeck join the Lady Razorbacks in the 2008-09 season. Katie Davis, a Lincoln, Neb., native was a state champion in the 100 backstroke and the 100 butterfly as a junior at Lincoln Northeast High School. She was named the most outstanding female swimmer two times and was in the NISCA Top 16 twice. Davis also broke five school records as a Rocket. As a senior Davis swam USA only and earned Wendy’s Heisman Female Athlete award and was a candidate for the hall of fame. Davis also swam for the Nebraska Aquatics club team. “Katie will be able to immediately help us bolster our depth in the backstroke events,” said Poppell. “She is a terrific young lady with a great deal of enthusiasm that will fit in very well with our team dynamic.” Cai Lin Khoo joins the Lady Razorbacks from Petaling Jaya, Malaysia where she set the Malaysian national record in the 400 and 800 meter free. Khoo was the women’s overall champion two years for her club team. At Bukit Jalil Sports School Khoo was the inter-school state champion as a sophomore. Khoo also brings valuable international experience competing in the Southeast Asian Games and the 2007 World Championships. She qualified to represent Malaysia in the 2008 Olympic Games. “Cai Lin will help us strengthen and solidify our distance freestyle group and improve our quality of depth in the 400 individual medley as well,” Poppell said. “She is delightful and enthusiastic and we are thrilled to have her join us next year.” Lisa Lunkenheimer of Derby, Kan., was a three-time all-state selection and a state champion in the 200 freestyle and 100 fly as a junior. She broke six records at Derby High School and was a three-year letterwinner. Lunkenheimer competed in the Short Course Nationals three years and the Long Course Junior Nationals in 2007. As a member of the Wichita swim club she broke records in the 200 free, 200-yard fly and 200-meter fly. “Over the past year, Lisa has established herself as one of the top butterfly swimmers in the Midwest,” said Poppell. “She continues to improve her versatility and will be able to help provide depth in the middle distance freestyle events.” Webster Groves, Mo., product Jillienne Schilling broke records at Webster Groves High School in the 100 breaststroke, 100 fly, 200 individual medley, 200 free relay and 400 free relay. She finished third in both the 200 and 400 free relays as a sophomore and fourth in the 200 and 500 frees as a junior. Schilling also swam for the CSP Tideriders where she was coached by former Razorback Dave McCrary. She placed fourth in the 200 back and eighth in the 200 IM at Sectionals. Schilling competed in the USS Zones and Junior Nationals. “Jillienne is someone that we have enjoyed watching improve over the last year and feel that she has some of her best swimming still ahead of her,” Poppell said. “She is a wonderful young lady with a very strong work ethic and commitment to the sport. We envision Jillienne being able to help us in the backstroke, middle distance freestyle, and individual medley events.” Palm Beach County Swimmer of the Year, Alison Templin, comes to Arkansas from West Palm Beach, Fla. At Suncoast Community High School Templin broke records in the 200 free and the 500 free, received all-county honors and was named MVP. She swam for the Lake Lytal Lightning club team where she was a Junior Olympic qualifier and swam in the U.S. Short Course Nationals. Templin also participated in Zones, Sectionals and the Grand Prix. “Coming from a strong swimming program in Florida, we feel that Alison has a tremendous amount of upside potential,” said Poppell. “At Arkansas, she will have the opportunity to train with some of the best distance freestylers in the country and we really look forward to great things from her over time.” Katie Whitbeck comes from a family of swimmers as her mother and aunt both swam at the University of Oklahoma. At Bishop McGuinness High School in Oklahoma City, Okla., Whitbeck won the state title in the 200 free every year she competed. She also placed first in the 100 free and 100 fly. Whitbeck set every school record except the 100 breast. She swam for the Chesapeake swim club and cmopeted at the Central Zones, Sectionals, Short Course Nationals, Long Course Nationals and Junior Nationals. “Katie is one of the top recruits coming out of this part of the country and she brings a wealth of high level competitive experience to Arkansas,” Poppell said. “She will be able to immediately help us in the 100 and 200 freestyle events as well as the butterfly and be a valuable member on relays. She is a delightful young lady, comes from a fantastic family, is a very dedicated and hardworking individual, and should greatly excel in the environment that we are building here at Arkansas.” The Lady’Backs return to the pool for competition Jan. 5, facing Florida and Indian River Community College in Gainesville, Fla. For more information about Arkansas swimming and diving, please log on to LADYBACKS.COM.



Sports Category : Swimming & Diving (W)