COLUMBUS, Ohio – The synchronized swimming Buckeyes will have another chance to showcase their routines at home this Saturday at the annual Jessica Beck Memorial Competition, hosting Michigan and Lindenwood. Saturday’s competition will be the first time the Scarlet and Gray squads will debut their team routines centered around the themes of mental health and sustainability. The meet will also feature a senior recognition for the program’s three graduating seniors: Kaitlyn Carboun, Phoebe Coffin and Breanna Malone. Fans should arrive at McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion at 2 p.m. to catch the routine portion of the evening. After the meet, the seniors will be signing team posters.
REMEMBERING JESSICA BECK
The annual competition is named after Jessica Beck, a former Ohio State synchronized swimmer who passed away in 2005 during her senior year at the University. Beck was a three-time scholar-athlete, Academic All-America and All-Big Ten honoree. Beyond excelling in academics, she was devoted to service to her community and was described as an embodiment of the value of hard work. She holds a special place in the program’s heart 15 years later, as student-athletes who never met her still honor her presence by leaving an open space for Beck in their traditional huddle during Carmen Ohio.
THE CLASS OF 2020
Saturday’s Jessica Beck Memorial Competition will also recognize three seniors: Phoebe Coffin, Breanna Malone and Kaitlyn Carboun. The class of 2020 has been a part of three Overall Institution National Championships throughout their time on the team and they have their eyes set on a fourth this season. All three student-athletes have swam primarily with the Gray squad throughout their collegiate careers, earning third place each year in the team category at U.S. Collegiate Nationals.
Despite having a long season ahead of them, we asked the three graduating seniors to reflect back on their journeys with the program so far.
Favorite Buckeye memory? Traveling with my teammates to competitions and singing in the rain during a student-athlete recognition football game.
Advice to younger Buckeyes? Embrace what is around you right now and the relationships you have.
What makes the Ohio State synchronized swimming program special? Being a part of this program has allowed me to join an elite group of athletes, coaches, and staff that all want what is best for you. We all work together and build each other up, it is truly a place like no other.
How you think you’ve changed from freshman year to now? I have become more confident in who I am and grown to appreciate all that this sport has given me. I also have continuously jumped in the pool later and later each year.
Favorite routine from your collegiate career? Dream Team my freshman year, 2017.
Future plans? Travel and attend nursing school.
Favorite Buckeye memory? Rushing the field with my dad at the 2017 Penn State game
Advice to younger Buckeyes? It goes by way quicker than it feels in the moment, so embrace every second. Also, the fuel zone doesn’t exist in the real world so stock up while you can.
What makes the Ohio State synchronized swimming program special? The everlasting bond that I have been able to create with my teammates through competing for something bigger than just ourselves is unlike anything I have ever experienced and is something I will cherish forever.
How do you think you’ve changed from freshman year to now? I am much more confident and outgoing than I was my freshman year and overall more secure with who I am and who I want to be.
Favorite routine from your collegiate career? The honor of swimming Emma’s ‘Gravity’ solo and making it my own.
Future plans? Move back to Florida because I miss the sun, receive my interior design certification and hopefully travel more internationally
Favorite Buckeye memory? My favorite buckeye memory generally has been traveling to meets. More specifically, the bus rides to Virginia, the “O”s that we make when we takeoff in any flight, and laughing through getting lost in Boston.
Advice for younger Buckeyes? Meet with as many people as you can because you never know who may inspire and help you to become the best version of yourself.
What makes the Ohio State synchronized swimming program special? This program is unique in the respect that we have uncommonly strong bonds with each other that allow for us to be incredibly connected both inside and outside of the pool. This extends to our alumni and the future members of this program as we all strive to respect the past, defend the present, and protect the future.
How do you think you’ve changed from freshman year to now? From freshman year to now I have definitely found new passions of study through meeting amazing professionals who have encouraged and assisted in refining my future career goals to reflect these changes.
Favorite routine from your collegiate career? My favorite routine from my collegiate career was the ‘stupid good’ storm duet with Sarah Walsh.
Future plans? My future plans involve attending graduate school and pursuing a career in national security. My dream job would be to work for the United States Department of State and have a role in diplomacy.
“We are incredibly proud of this senior class and all they have meant to this program. Although each has moved through a slightly different journey, there has never been a doubt that their commitment and loyalty to this team has been unwavering. They will definitely be missed!” Head coach Holly Vargo-Brown