FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – A total of five members of the University of Arkansas swimming and diving team were named College Swimming and Diving Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) All-Americans for the 2019-20 season, the organization announced on Wednesday.
A total of two Razorbacks earned individual invitations to the NCAA Championships, while an additional three Arkansas women swam on ‘A’ standard relays, to be selected for the All-America team.
Due to the cancellation of the NCAA Championships, the CSCAA Board adjusted the selection criteria in each Division. In Division I, all relays achieving ‘A’ standards, individuals selected to the NCAA Championships and divers entered in uncontested events from the Zone ‘C’ Diving meet earned All-America status.
After a record-breaking season, Anna Hopkin was named an All-American in five events. At the Mizzou Invite, the senior swam an astonishing 21.19 in the 50 free, breaking the pool and school record, and setting a new personal best. Her 21.19 tied for the fastest time in the SEC this season. The Preston, England native swam three NCAA ‘A’ cut times in the 100 free, including two at the 2020 SEC Championships. Her time of 46.20 in the finals of the SEC Championships earned her a silver medal on top of setting a new personal and season best. Hopkin also posted a time of 1:42.35 in the 200 free at the SEC Championships this year, automatically qualifying her for the National Championships. Hopkin currently holds the program’s top times in the 50 (21.19), 100 (46.20) and 200 free (1:42.35).
Distance swimmer Peyton Palsha had a phenomenal season, earning an individual invitation to NCAA Championships in the 400 IM and the 500 and 1650 free. Palsha holds the top-five times in the 400 IM this season for the Razorbacks. At the 2020 SEC Championships, the junior swam her fastest time in both the 400 IM (4:09.83) and 1650 free (16:01.99). In the 500 free, the St. Petersburg, Florida, native, holds the program’s top time of 4:38.86, which she set at the Mizzou Invite.
Hopkin and sophomores Molly Moore, Andrea Sansores and Kobie Melton were selected for the All-America Team in the 200 and 400 free relay. At the SEC Championships, the quartet combined for a time of 1:27.93 in the 200 free relay, posting the fastest time in school history and earning an automatic NCAA cut time. Their time of 3:14.51 in the 400 yard free relay at the 2020 SEC Championships also earned them an NCAA ‘A’ cut time on top of setting a new school record.
Arkansas Women’s 2019-20 All-Americans
- Anna Hopkin – Senior / Preston, England (50 Free, 100 Free, 200 Free, 200 Free Relay, 400 Free Relay)
- Kobie Melton – Sophomore / Athens, Ala. (200 Free Relay, 400 Free Relay)
- Molly Moore – Sophomore / Brookline, Mo. (200 Free Relay, 400 Free Relay)
- Peyton Palsha – Junior / St. Petersburg, Fla. (500 Free, 1650 Free, 400 IM)
- Andrea Sansores De La Fuente – Sophomore / Cancun, Mexico (200 Free Relay, 400 Free Relay)
Quoting Head Coach Neil Harper
“I am so excited for our ladies to be recognized by the College Swim Coaches Association as 2020 NCAA All-Americans. Anna and Peyton recorded nationally ranked individual times and our relays achieved times that were also nationally ranked as All-Americans. It was a difficult end to our season but we are proud that they are all being recognized for their achievements for this season.”
This is not the first time the association adjusted All-America criteria. The first women’s All-America team was published in 1975, seven years prior to the first NCAA Women’s Swimming and Diving Championship. During much of that time, the team was selected by a panel of coaches. In 1985, the honor was standardized around the NCAA Championships with the top eight finalists receiving first-team recognition and consolation finalists being named honorable mention.
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