Four Swimmers Named To 2002 U.S. World Championship Team

Oct. 23, 2001

USC swimmers Klete Keller, Erik Vendt and Kaitlin Sandeno and former Trojan Lindsay Benko were among 26 Americans chosen to represent the United States in April at the 2002 Short Course World Championships in Moscow, Russia.

The championships will be held April 3-7. The swimmers were chosen based upon their 2001 long course world rankings.

Vendt (North Easton, Mass.), a junior, is coming off a great year. He won a silver medal in the 400m IM at the 2001 World Championships and won a pair of U.S. National titles in the 400m IM and the 1500m freestyle. He also placed in the Top 3 in three races at the 2001 NCAA Championships and won two titles at the Pac-10 Championships.

Keller (Phoenix, Ariz.), a sophomore who came to USC after winning two medals at the 2000 Summer Olympics, added a string of honors to his resume in 2001. The 2001 Pac-10 Men's Swimmer and Newcomer of the Year, Keller won both the 200y free and the 500y free at the NCAA Championships. Keller then won his second career U.S. national title by taking the 200m free and also swam on USC's winning 800m free relay. At the 2001 World Championships, Keller won a pair of bronze medals, taking third in the 200m free as well as in the 800m free relay.

Sandeno (Lake Forest, Calif.), a freshman, entered USC already among the most successful swimmers in the nation. She qualified for and competed in three of the most grueling events at the 2000 Summer Olympics, winning a bronze in the 800m free. She finished fourth in the 400m IM and sixth in the 200m fly. Before graduating from El Toro High last June, Sandeno won her fifth and sixth career U.S. national titles at the 2001 U.S. Spring National, taking the 400m IM and the 200m fly.

Benko (Elkhart, Ind.) was one of USC's top swimmers ever (1996-99) who won a gold medal at the 2000 Summer Olympics. She was a five-time NCAA champion at USC and was a 21-time All-American.

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