Swimming: Pius X vs. Lincoln Southwest, 1.19.17

Lincoln Pius X's Caroline Theil will continue her swimming career at Texas A&M. 

MATT RYERSON, Journal Star

Seven months after visiting the school, Caroline Theil couldn't get Texas A&M out of her mind.

So the Lincoln Pius X and Greater Nebraska Swim Team standout made the call to the A&M swimming coaches earlier this week and told them she wanted to be an Aggie.

"I took a couple other visits and decided nothing could even touch Texas A&M, so I decided to commit," said Theil, following the third day of competition at the Lincoln Sectional VIII meet Friday at Woods Pool. "A&M is 100 percent committed in me and improving me as a swimmer, so I'm super-excited."

Theil has won four state gold medals, and she competed in last summer's U.S. Olympic Swim Trials in Omaha, as well as last December's Junior Winter Nationals.

Theil, who will take an official visit to A&M in September, said two things stood out about the school.

One, she wants to major in biology, and A&M is known for its science program. Two, the swimming program, led by coach Steve Bultman, has a knack for developing swimmers, including individual medley competitors.

"(Bultman) reminds me of Coach (Mike Witt) here," Theil said. "He develops swimmers. The big names don't go into A&M, but the big names come out, and I'm looking forward to that."

The Texas A&M women have won six conference titles under Bultman, including the past two seasons in the Southeastern Conference.

Theil won the 200-yard IM in 2 minutes, 1.63 seconds at last season's state meet. She also took silver in the 100 butterfly. She made a big splash as a freshman, winning state golds in the 100 and 200 freestyles. She won gold in the 100 butterfly as a sophomore.

Theil placed sixth during Friday's 100-meter backstroke (1:06.86) at the Lincoln Sectional. She placed third in the 200 breaststroke (2:38.44) on Wednesday.

Theil is the second Lincoln swimmer to commit to an NCAA Division I school this summer. Lincoln Southwest senior Alana Palmer gave her pledge to Wisconsin in June.

Reach the writer at 402-473-2639 or cgrell@journalstar.com. On Twitter @LJSSportsGrell.


Sports editor

Clark Grell is sports editor.

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