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March 25, 2015

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.–Virginia sophomore swimmer Leah Smith has been named one of four nominees for the 2015 Honda Sports Award for swimming and diving, the Collegiate Women Sports Awards (CWSA) announced Wednesday (March 25).

Smith joins Missy Franklin of California, Simone Manuel of Stanford and Kelsi Worrell of Louisville as this year’s swimming and diving nominees. The nominees were chosen by a panel of expert coaches from the sport of swimming & diving.

Smith (Pittsburgh, Pa.) won two national titles at the NCAA Championships last week in Greensboro, N.C. She captured the 500-yard freestyle and 1,650-yard freestyle titles. In addition to winning the 500 free, she broke the NCAA record in prelims in 4:30.37. In the 1,650 free, she set a new ACC and UVa record in 15:34.46 and won by 12 seconds. For her efforts, Smith helped lead the Cavaliers to a fifth-place finish, the highest team finish in program history.

Smith became the second woman in program history to win two NCAA titles and the first to win multiple events at the same national meet. She became the third Cavalier woman to place in the top eight in three individual events at the same NCAA meet. In two years, Smith is a seven-time All-American.

The Honda Sports Award is presented annually by the CWSA to the top women athletes in 12 NCAA-sanctioned sports and signifies “the best of the best in collegiate athletics”. The winner of the sport award becomes a finalist for the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year and the prestigious 2015 Honda Cup.

The Honda Sports award winner for swimming & diving will be announced next week after voting by administrators from over 1,000 NCAA member schools. Each NCAA member institution has a vote.

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