COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- Purdue's Kaersten Meitz earned a berth to the World University Games based on her performance at the Phillips 66 National Championships last month, a feat confirmed when USA Swimming officially announced its roster for the international showcase Monday.
Meitz posted a trio of top-12 finishes at Nationals, headlined by placing fourth in the 400-meter and sixth in the 800-meter freestyle. She also took 12th (fourth in the B final) of the 200 free. The rising senior officially qualified for the World University Games in the 400, but will also have the opportunity to compete in the 800.
Meitz joins diver Joe Cifelli as Boilermakers slated to compete at the World University Games. The 29th Summer Universiade is set for Aug. 19 to 30 in Chinese Taipei, Taiwan. The Purdue men's basketball team is also representing the USA at the WUG this year. The swimming events are slated for Aug. 20 to 27.
As of one of 20 women named to the USA Swimming roster, Meitz is set to become the first female swimmer to race for Team USA at the World University Games. However, Purdue swimming & diving has been well represented at the Summer Universiade over the last 12 years. Multiple Boilermakers qualified this year for the fifth time in the last seven WUG. But 2007 also marked the last time both a swimmer and diver from Purdue qualified in the same year.
Meitz established new Purdue long-course records in all three of her events at the National Championships in Indianapolis. She finished the 200 in 1:59.56, the 400 in 4:08.34 and the 800 in 8:34.30. The Waukesha, Wisconsin, native also holds program short-course records in the 500-yard (4:37.45) and 1000 free (9:38.79).
Former Purdue swimmers with international experience for Team USA includes Kim Fritsch (1991-94) at 1991 Pan Pacific Swimming Championships in Japan and Marisa Watts (1995-98) at the 1999 FINA World Cup in Brazil. Additionally, former coach Cathy Wright-Eger was the manager of the Team USA women at 2003 and 2005 World University Games as well as the 2007 Pan American Games.
Featuring swimmers ages 17 to 23 who are current college students or recent graduates, the World University Games has been a springboard to international success for numerous swimmers. Meitz is a three-time NCAA Championships qualifier as an individual, earning honorable mention All-America accolades in the 500 free as both a sophomore and junior.
PURDUE SWIM-DIVE ATHLETES AT WORLD UNIVERSITY GAMES IN RECENT YEARS
2017 -- Joe Cifelli (USA), Kaersten Meitz (USA)
2015 -- Marat Amaltdinov (Russia), Nika Karlina Petric (Slovenia)
2013 -- MacKenzie Tweardy (USA)
2011 -- Danny Cox (USA)
2009 -- David Colturi (USA), Kara Cook (USA), Ashley Karnes (USA)
2007 -- Romain Maire (France), Amanda Miller (USA), Giordan Pogioli (USA), Zach Schultz (USA)
2005 -- Carrie McCambridge (USA), Giordan Pogioli (USA)