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Johnstown’s Meghan Bartlett awarded SUNYAC Women’s Swimming & Diving All-Decade honor

FREDONIA — Three Fredonia State springboard divers have been named to the SUNYAC Women’s Swimming and Diving Team of the Decade announced today.

The trio — Johnstown’s Meghan Bartlett, Sarah Ficarro, and Ashley Keller — plus the five male divers cited Monday are indicative of the success Fredonia State had in springboard diving during the 2010’s. At least one Blue Devil qualified for the NCAA championships for 13 straight years, a run that began earlier in the previous decade.

The architect of much of the success was John Crawford, the assistant coach in charge of diving under then head coach Arthur Wang. A member of the Fredonia State Athletics Hall of Fame, Crawford was head coach of the entire men’s program before it was disbanded in the 1980s — only to return at the start of this century following the construction of the Steele Hall Natatorium.Here’s a capsule look at each of the three women cited today by the SUNYAC, plus honorable mention of two other women who excelled in the sport:

Meghan Bartlett: Six-time All-America, six-time All SUNYAC, five-time SUNYAC champ, three-time SUNYAC Female Diver of the Year, two-time SUNYAC Female Diver of the Meet, 2016 and 2017 Fredonia State Female Student-Athlete of the Year. Transferred from St. Bonaventure and competed for three seasons for the Blue Devils. Wasted no time making her mark by winning both boards at the 2015 SUNYAC meet, her sophomore season. Won both SUNYAC post-season awards for divers. Added an NCAA zone title before finishing sixth in the 3-meter and seventh in the 1-meter at the NCAA championships. As a junior, repeated as the SUNYAC 3-meter champ and finished second in the 1-meter. Claimed the SUNYAC Diver of the Year title on the strength of her conference showing plus her third and fourth All-America placements — second in the 1-meter and third in the 3-meter. As a senior, won both boards for a second time (giving her three straight 3-meter titles) and claimed both post-season diving awards, a resume boosted by two more All-America placements — third in the 3-meter and fourth in the 1-meter. In addition to her success in the diving well, Bartlett — a Management major — also excelled in the classroom and was twice chosen to the Scholar-Athlete All-America Team by the College Swimming Coaches of America Association. She was the 2017 SUNYAC Scholar-Athlete of the Year and was inducted into the Fredonia State chapter of Chi Alpha Sigma prior to her graduation in 2017. She hailed from Johnstown, and Johnstown High School.

Sarah Ficarro: Three-time All-America including two-time national runner-up placements, four-time Honorable Mention All-America, five-time SUNYAC champ, three-time SUNYAC Female Diver of the Meet, 2013 Fredonia State Female Student-Athlete of the Year, 2018 inductee into the Fredonia State Athletics Hall of Fame. As a freshman, won both SUNYAC boards and claimed her first of three SUNYAC Female Diver of the Meet honors. Qualified for the 2010 NCAA meet based on a video review and made good with a second-place finish off the 1-meter board and a sixth-place finish in the 3-meter. As a sophomore, defended her SUNYAC 3-meter title and finished second in the 1-meter. Also claimed her second SUNYAC Female Diver of the Meet award and earned Honorable Mention All-America placements off both boards at the 2011 meet. As a junior, won the SUNYAC 3-meter crown, was second in the 1-meter, and won her third Diver of the Meet award. Her 3-meter success rolled over to the 2012 NCAA meet, where she finished second overall, her third All-America placement. She also earned an Honorable Mention placement in the 1-meter. As a senior, repeated as the SUNYAC 3-meter champ with a record-setting score and finished second to Keller off the 1-meter board. Set school and conference records while winning the first-ever NCAA zone meet 1-meter crown, while finishing third in the 3-meter. Earned another Honorable Mention All-America placement at the 2013 NCAA meet. Her prowess in the classroom as a Communication Disorders & Science major earned her the 2011 SUNYAC Chancellor’s Award, 2012 and 2013 CSCAA Scholar All-America certificates, and the 2013 SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Academic Excellence. Was part of the 2018 Fredonia State Athletics Hall of Fame Induction Class, the last group to be enshrined under the old five-year wait rule. A native of Owego, and a graduate of Owego High School.

Ashley Keller: Four-time Honorable Mention All-America, four-time SUNYAC champ, two-time SUNYAC Female Diver of the Meet. Finished third off both boards at her first SUNYAC meet in 2011. As a sophomore, set school and SUNYAC records while winning the 1-meter title and was second to Ficarro off the 3-meter board. As a junior, won her first of two SUNYAC Female Diver of the Meet awards after setting a conference record while defending her 1-meter title. Again, was runner-up to Ficarro in the 3-meter competition. The zone meet format, new in 2013, proved beneficial as Keller third in the 3-meter and advanced to her first NCAA meet, where she earned Honorable Mention All-America placement off both boards. As a senior, won both SUNYAC boards, repeated as SUNYAC Female Diver of the Meet, won both zone boards, and earned two more Honorable Mention All-America placements at the 2014 NCAA meet. Hailing from Lockport, N.Y., and Lockport H.S., Keller was a 2014 CSCAA Honorable Mention Scholar All-America.

Honorable Mention: Fredonia State sent two other women divers to the NCAA meet during the decade. Katelyn Haley finished 12th in the 3-meter in 2014 and Heather Colby was ninth in the 1-meter in 2015. Both women were seniors at the time. Both earned Honorable Mention All-America certificates.

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