Swimming Standout Dlugonski A Finalist For Saturday's NCAA Woman of the Year Announcement
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa., October 28, 2005 - Former Penn State swimming standout Deirdre Dlugonski (Washington, Pa.) is among the 10 finalists for the 2005 NCAA Woman of the Year award, one of the most prestigious honors the NCAA bestows.
The winner of the 2005 NCAA Woman of the Year will be announced at an awards dinner Saturday night in Indianapolis.
The award recognizes senior student-athletes in intercollegiate athletics for their outstanding achievements in athletics, academics and community service.
Dlugonski, who graduated in May with a 3.96 grade point average, previously had been selected as the Pennsylvania winner in the NCAA Woman of the Year program. The Woman of the Year Selection Committee chose the finalists from 352 entries.
Dlugonski graduated in May as the Marshall of the College of Health and Human Development/Kinesiology, with the highest grade point average among Kinesiology students. She graduated ranked first in a class of 114 in the Department of Kinesiology, and 17th in a class of 909 in the College of Health and Human Development.
A nine-time All-American, Dlugonski also was a 2005 ESPN the Magazine Academic All-America Women's At-Large First Team member, as chosen by the College Sports Information Directors Association of America (CoSIDA).
Dlugonski recently was selected the recipient of an NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship, becoming Penn State's 40th student-athlete to receive the prestigious honor.
She won her seventh Big Ten title in 2005, helping Penn State break the Big Ten record in the 200 medley relay with a time of 1:39.06. At the 2005 NCAA Championships, Dlugonski finished seventh in both the 200 medley relay and the 400 medley relay, while also placing 13th in the 400 freestyle relay, and 15th in the 200 freestyle relay. She also was a three-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree, and she was named to the All-Big Ten first team for the fourth time.
Dlugonski finished her Nittany Lion career as a seven-time Big Ten Champion, and a four-time College Swim Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) Academic All-American. She set six Penn State school records, and three Big Ten records. She was also a three-time team captain for Penn State, helping to lead the squad to its only two Big Ten Championship titles in 2002 and 2005, respectively.
The other finalists for the NCAA Woman of the Year are: Michelle Reeser, University of Alabama, gymnastics; Alisha Williams, Western State College of Colorado, cross country/track and field; Leah Geib, University of Delaware, field hockey; Melissa Lehman, Barry University, volleyball; Jennifer Skolaski, University of Iowa, swimming and diving; Richelle Simpson, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, gymnastics; Janiva Willis, Winthrop University, softball; Lauryn McCalley, University of Tennessee, swimming and diving; Lindsay Hagerman, Washington and Lee University, tennis.