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Childhood friends to compete in national swimming championships

| Ellis Williams

Two athletes who were recruited by Division 1 universities but ultimately decided they’d rather be Blugolds are among the 11 UW-Eau Claire swimmers who qualified to compete in the 2016 NCAA Division III Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships on March 16 in Greensboro, N.C.

As youth, Jessica Short and Sam Senczyszyn were teammates on swim teams at the Ozaukee Aquatics club and later competed against each other as high school rivals.

After graduating from Grafton High School, Senczyszyn first committed to NCAA Division I University of Arizona to swim before changing her mind and coming to UW-Eau Claire instead.

Short, a graduate of Cedarburg High School, enrolled at Texas Christian University, another D-1 school. She, too, quickly realized that UW-Eau Claire would be a better fit for her. After just a few months in Texas, she transferred to UW-Eau Claire.

It didn’t take the two freshmen long to find success in the pool as Blugolds.

At the 2016 WIAC Swimming and Diving Championships, Senczyszyn set a new national record in the 200-yard breaststroke.

You can read more about Short and Senczyszyn and their success in The Spectator, UW-Eau Claire’s student newspaper.

Photo caption: Freshmen swimmers Jessica Short, left, and Sam Senczyszyn are among the 11 Blugolds who will compete in the national championship this week.

Photo credit: Photo by Kendall Ruchti, the photo/multimedia editor for The Spectator. Ruchti is a junior public relations major from Kenosha.