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May 7, 1998

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The University of Virginia men’s and women’s swimming teams recently held their team banquet following the conclusion of the 1997-98 season. As part of the evening’s events, the coaching staff presented ACC Championship awards to members of the women’s team. Several team awards were also announced by head coach Mark Bernardino.

Sophomore Meghan McCubbins (Richmond, Va.) was named the Most Valuable Performer for the women, following a season in which she earned first team All-America honors in the 100 yard butterfly, set a new school record in the 100 yard freestyle and swam a leg on two ACC Championship relay teams. For the men, sophomore Austin Ramirez (Brookfield, Wis.) and junior Shamek Pietucha (Edmonton, Alberta) shared MVP honors. Ramirez was a first team All-American in the 500 and 1,650 yard freestyle, in addition to winning ACC titles in both those events. Pietucha set new school records in the 100 and 200 yard butterfly and the 100 yard backstroke, and also earned All-America honors in all three events.

Sophomore Katie Caratelli (Westlake, Ohio) was selected as the team’s Most Outstanding Diver after winning the ACC title on the three meter board and being named Most Valuable Diver of the ACC meet for the second consecutive season. In addition, freshman Meghan Iffland (Wilmington, Del.) earned Rookie of the Year honors for the women, while freshman Jamie Grimes (Olney, Md.) was selected as the men’s Rookie of the Year. Iffland swam a leg on two ACC Championship relays, while also earning All-ACC honors in the 100 yard backstroke and qualifying for the NCAA Championship. Grimes was an All-ACC selection in the 1,650 yard freestyle, while also advancing to the NCAA Championship.

The following awards were also presented: Brooke Maury Leadership Award to Maureen Burnham (Sarasota, Fla.) and Graeme Leiser (Raleigh, N.C.); Coaches Award to Emily Trakas (Herndon, Va.) and Jason Webb (Philadelphia, Pa.); Academic Award to Ann Folkins (Sacramento, Calif.) and Ryan McGeary (Chester Springs, Pa.); and Hardest Worker Award to Bridget Vogelsang (Menlo Park, Calif.) and Doak Finch (Southern Pines, N.C.).

In addition, former UVa swimmer Glenn Houck (Class of 1989) announced the formation of the Mark Bernardino Swimming Scholarship Endowment Fund. The fund will raise money to establish a swimming scholarship at Virginia. As of April 25, alumni, parents and friends of the swimming program had raised $54,000. A fully endowed scholarship is $250,000 and will ensure that the swimming and diving program maintains the traditional level of success that Virginia has enjoyed over the past several decades.

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