May 12, 2014
PITTSBURGH - The University of Pittsburgh men's and women's swimming and diving teams announced their team captains for the 2014-15 season. The men's side selected Jon Lierley, Joey Notarianni and Mack Rice to lead the team next season. The women chose seniors Cam Dixon, Lauren Mills and Dani des Tombe as their leaders.
"I am very happy with the selections of captains for the 2014-2015 season," Head Coach Chuck Knoles said. "They are a close group of dedicated Pitt men and women that are focused on encouraging and leading by example as we enter our second season in the ACC. Our sights are set on moving up in the conference and getting swimmers and divers qualified for the NCAA Championships. This group will help lead the way from within the team."
Lierley enters his second season as a men's team captain and is already a proven leader in and out of the pool for the Panthers. Most recently, Lierley contributed to the Panthers success at the ACC Championship Meet, where he led the 800 free relay to a record breaking performance. Lierley has also set an example away from the pool, as he was selected to the 2014 All-ACC Academic Team and received the Panther Triad Award from his teammates.
Senior Joey Notarianni is coming off a very impressive junior campaign where he competed in the ECAC Championships, advancing to the finals in all three of his individual events. On being elected, Notarianni remarked, "I am honored that my teammates chose me as one of the leaders for next year. We are a fantastic group of men, and I am very excited to lead the team in a positive direction."
Only a sophomore, Mack Rice was voted as a captain by his teammates for this upcoming season. He's a top scorer for the men's team, and eager for the opportunity early in his Panther career. "We have such a great group of guys that have such a strong chemistry," Rice said. "It's easy for me to take on the role as one of this team's leaders because of their support. It also gives me an opportunity to grow as a leader and develop as an individual."
On the women's side, senior Cam Dixon will lead the Panthers alongside teammates Dani des Tombe and Lauren Mills. As a stand out breaststroker on the team, Dixon looks to add to the Panther's success as a leader next season in the ACC.
Dani des Tombe returns for her final season with Panthers as one the women's team captains. As a lead scorer, and female recipient of the Panther's Most Valuable Swimmer award, des Tombe expects to help push her teammates through another successful season.
Senior Lauren Mills is a top sprint freestyler for the Panthers and hopes to help guide the Panthers in the right direction, both in and out of the pool. "Being elected as a captain by my teammates is an impressive and inspiring honor," Mills said. "That means they trust me, trust me to be there for them, as well as trust me to help take them in the right direction.
"The ACC got a little taste of what we are capable of this past year, but we are not about `little tastes,' Only Big Dreams," Mills added.
The Panthers are already in full preparation mode for the upcoming season as they continue two-a-day training sessions throughout the summer. With little time for rest, the swimmers and divers will look to their next competitions in Nationals and Sectional meets during their summer break.
"All the sights and sounds of the ACC Championships are still fresh in my mind," Rice remarks. "I look at each day as an opportunity to get better for next season."
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