Nov. 29, 2012
VILLANOVA, Pa. - While most Villanova students find themselves on a quick flight or a short drive home for Thanksgiving break, sophomore swimmer Katrin Heider's journey involves thousands of miles. She traveled back to her home in Bergisch, Germany, for the holiday break and had the opportunity to compete in the German Short Course Nationals (a short course meters meet) in Wuppertal, Germany. The event featured some of Germany's finest swimmers, including Heider, who had an outstanding performance at the national competition.
The meet was not Heider's first Short Course National event, but each time seems to be special in its own way as she said, "Even though I have been to this meet several times now, it is always a slightly different experience. It is one of the most important meets in Germany and all of our fastest swimmers are usually competing there, meaning they are sharing the warm-up and warm down pool with you. It is a great experience to not only be a spectator at such a meet, but to actually be a part of the crowd that is competing in front of so many people."
Although she initially felt a little unrested, Heider proved she could hold her own competing among Germany's most elite swimmers. She posted a sixth-place finish in the 200 yard freestyle, touching the wall a 2:00.92 and earned 12th place in the 100 yard freestyle with a time of 0:56.18. Heider also notched a 27th place in the 50 yard butterfly, finishing in 0:28.80. Rejoining her German SSF Bonn teammates, Heider also had the opportunity to compete in the 200 yard freestyle relay and the 200 yard medley relay.
A strong finish at the Short Course Nationals has Heider anticipating what's next for her this season swimming for Villanova, "I am coming back to America after this meet a little more confident about my swimming and even more excited about the BIG EAST (Championships) in February. I am very thankful I had the opportunity to fly back home and represent my team... it is great to feel this support not only in America with our great coaching staff, but also at home."
Heider and the rest of the Wildcats will resume competition on January 15th when they take on BIG EAST rivals Seton Hall at the Villanova Swim Center.