Swimming and Diving holds Postseason Banquet

May 1, 2006

LAWRENCE, Kan. – The University of Kansas swimming and diving team wrapped up the season with their annual awards banquet Sunday, April 30 in the Naismith Room in the Kansas Hall of Athletics. Five individual awards were handed out and the 2006-07 team captains were named at the banquet.

Senior co-captain Gina Gnatzig was named the Tammy Thomas MVP for the 2005-06 season. The Whitewater, Wis., native qualified for the NCAA Championships in the 500 and 200 free. Gnatzig set a school record in the 500 free at the Big 12 Championships with a time of 4:48.77. The award is named after Tammy Thomas, one of the top swimmers in Jayhawk history. While at KU, Thomas earned 12 individual conference championships and All-American status in 1980, ’82 and ’83.

Senior Lindsey Urbatchka received the Karen Dionne award. The Sheridan, Wyo., native was a member of the record setting 400 medley relay team with a time of 3:44.94. The award is presented annually to the most inspirational member of the swimming and diving team. The award is named in honor of Karen Dionne, who swam two years at KU and earned an individual conference championship in the 100 breaststroke in 1985. Following her sophomore season, Dionne was in an automobile accident that ended her swimming career.

Freshman Ashley Leidigh was named the Rookie of the Year for the 2005-06 season. The Merriam, Kan., native set a school record in the 100 fly with a time of 53.08, an NCAA “A” standard time. Leidigh qualified for the NCAA Championship with an “A” standard time in the 100 fly (53.08) and finished 43rd in the prelims with a time of 55.51. She also qualified with her “B” standard time in the 200 fly (1:59.97) and finished 39th prelims with a time of 2:04.57.

Senior co-captain Emily Rusch was given the Academic Award. The Urbana, Ill., native had an overall 3.83 GPA at Kansas.

Head Coach Clark Campbell named Lisa Tilson and Jenny Short captains for the 2006-07 season.

“The awards reception is a great time for the team to reflect on a great season,” said Campbell. “We are pleased with the honors the team earned and we got a chance to thank the seniors for their leadership and inspiration.”

The awards banquet brought the 2005-06 season to its official close. For more information about the upcoming season visit www.kuathletics.com.