April 1, 2001
AUSTIN, Texas - On the final day of the Phillips 66 National Championships, junior Jessica Aveyard finished strong. In the morning prelims of the 200-meter back stroke, she swam an Illinois long-course meter school record time of 2:15.58. That time made her the third seed entering the finals.
She came back strong in the finals, breaking her morning record with a time of 2:13.99 to take third place. Her outstanding performance landed her a spot on the U.S. National Swim Team. She also accepted a bid to race at the World University Games August 23-29 in Beijing, China.
"I thought about it, but not too much," Aveyard said of making the National Team and earning the opportunity to compete at the international level. "It was in the back of my mind, but I just came here to swim. It feels great. I'm really excited and I'm happy with how I swam."
"I'm really proud of Jessica," head coach Sue Novitsky said. "She did a great job training throughout the year. She is really developing into a great swimmer at the national level. She is inexperienced, but she is getting better and better every time she swims."
In the same event, sophomore Alsion Czmarko swam a 2:25.80 to finish 53rd.