Swimmer to make a splash at world championships


Swim meet

Dan Kotnik and Dan Kotnik

While most freshmen will be spending their summer back home reconnecting with friends and family, one University freshman has some different summer vacation plans.

Daniela Carrillo, a freshman on the women’s swim team, will cap off the season with a trip to Barcelona, Spain, with the Mexican National Team to compete in the World Championships.

“I’ve been trying to compete for the National Team for several meets over the past years and now that it actually happened, it was really exciting”, said Carrillo.

Carrillo qualified and won in the 100-meter breast stroke at the Mexican National Championship earlier this month with a time of 1:10:97, making her the only one to meet the World Championship qualifying standards.

Carrillo, a native of Hermosillo, Mexico, has had a season to remember in just her first year at the University. During the regular season, Carrillo racked up 11 top two finishes including five wins. At the MAC championships, she earned another two second place finishes and also set two University records in the 100 and 200-meter breast stroke. Her performances earned her a place on the All-MAC second team and also advanced her to the NCAA championships. She is the first Falcon swimmer to do so since Cheryl Patteson in 1996.

“I’m pretty sure the NCAA championship is my biggest accomplishment so far because of how hard it is to get into,” said Carrillo. “I always pursued it as a goal the whole year, but when I finally made it I was very excited.”

Daniela’s impressive swimming career didn’t begin in Northwest Ohio, though. Carrillo started competitive swimming at the age of 5, along with her older sister Lucía, with the encouragement of their mother.

“I always looked up to my sister because we both used to swim in the same events growing up,” said Carrillo.

At age 15, Carrillo went to her first national meet, and by the time she arrived at the University she held the Mexican national record for all ages in the 100-meter breast stroke.

Now, just a few short years later, Carrillo is ready and excited to represent her native country at the World Championships.

“I mean, it’s the World Championships so I’m pretty excited,” said Carrillo. “I don’t even think it’s hit me yet that I’m going to be there.”

And as for it being in Barcelona, Spain, a Spanish speaking country like where she grew up, “It’s definitely going to be more comfortable for me. I know it’ll be a lot easier for me to order at restaurants.”