DENTON (5/15/7) In the wake of the Mean Green Swimming and Diving team’s best-ever season, head coach Joe Dykstra announced the signing of four more athletes for the 2007-08 season to National Letters of Intent.
The Mean Green will add Taryne Cantillo (Georgetown, Texas), Angie Dworschack (Peoria, Ariz.), Kristen Tuttle (Austin, Texas) and Jessica Wellington (Wichita Falls, Texas).
“This class will make us a much deeper, and thus a more dangerous team in the region and in the Sun Belt Conference. All of these student-athletes are very fine students, citizens and understand the value of hard work and dedication,” Dykstra said. “They will not only elevate the level of our program with their talent, but with their work-ethic, positive attitudes, and strong desires to help North Texas gain acclaim as a top university for swimming & diving.”
Taryne Cantillo will bring experience and two years of eligibility to the Mean Green after transferring from Centenary where she won the team’s Swimmer of the Year honor as only a freshman. Originally from Georgetown, Texas, Cantillo set the school records in the 100-yard butterfly, 200-yard butterfly, and the 100-yard backstroke. She also was part of school-record setting teams for the 200-yard medley relay, 400-yard medley relay, and 800-yard freestyle relay. Before her days at Centenary she earned all-district, all-region and all-state each of her four years at Georgetown High School and was also named a high school All-American her junior and senior years. Cantillo will be joined at North Texas by her cousin Rosita Bado who signed in the fall.
Angie Dworschack hails from Peoria, Ariz., and will be counted on by Dykstra to be an instant contributor next season in the distance and middle-distance freestyle events. Named the school’s Swimmer of the Year her final three seasons at Ironwood High School, Dworschack has already posted times that would challenge top-five times at North Texas including her 1,000-yard freestyle time of 10:38.38. That is only .28 seconds shy of the fifth-best time on the North Texas list. She finished fifth at the 2006 Arizona state meet in both the 200-yard and 500-yard freestyle. Dworschack also possesses a strong pedigree as her sister, Jessica, swims similar events at the University of New Mexico.
A possible sleeper in the eyes of Dykstra is Kristen Tuttle from Round Rock Westwood High School. A scholastic All-American whose father is a former swimmer at Texas, Tuttle has personal bests of 54.81 seconds in the 100-yard freestyle and 59.39 in the 100-yard butterfly. That butterfly time is only a second less than the current Mean Green school record.
Wichita Falls Hirschi standout Jessica Wellington rounds out the class as someone who Dykstra feels as though has immense natural ability and will be looked to contribute primarily in the breaststroke for the Mean Green. Wellington was named all-state four times in the 100-yard breaststroke and twice in the 200-yard individual medley. Named district Swimmer of the Year three times, she holds every individual school record and was part of two relay records at Hirschi High School.
These signings are in addition to the three athletes signed by Dykstra in the fall signing period: Rosita Bado, Ashley Sartin, and Kelly Gordon.
Dykstra led the Mean Green to immediate improvement in his first season at the helm, including the school’s best-ever finish by taking fourth place at the Sun Belt Conference Championships. The team also took hold of 17 of the 21 available school records. Six of those individual records were set by last season’s freshmen and each of the relay records included at least one freshman.