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Azcentral.com’s Jeff Metcalfe reports on the season kick-off for the Arizona State University women’s triathlon team. The NCAA team is coached by well-known triathlon coach Cliff English and 2012 London Olympic bronze medalist Erin Densham.
Even Katie Gorcyzca, one of the most promising young triathletes in the United States, admits to being starstruck by her first two weeks at Arizona State.
She and six others make up the first varsity women’s triathlon team at a Power Five university, one of two women’s sports added by ASU with funding from a $32 million donation primarily for men’s hockey and a $140,000 grant from USA Triathlon.
Competition begins Monday with a Central region qualifying race in Naperville, Ill., where Gorcyzca, Charlotte Ahrens and Delaney Bucker will be the first to represent ASU in the NCAA emerging sport. Others will compete in October, including Amy Darlington, a graduate transfer from Penn where she competed in cross country and track. The Women’s Collegiate National Championship (750K swim, 20K bike, 5K run) is Nov. 5 in New Orleans with ASU expecting to qualify a full five-women team.
Gorcyzca, 20, is from Las Vegas and comes to ASU after two years at the Elite Triathlon Academy at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs.
“It’s really exciting to see the sport of triathlon is growing, and I’m really glad it’s an NCAA sport,” she said. “I hope more schools join in. Once everybody sees how we progress with this program, other schools are going to join in.
“It was really stressful for me at first because it’s a big transition. Everything is new, but at the same time, it’s very exciting. ASU does a fantastic job supporting all their athletes. It’s really cool to see what it’s like to compete for a D-I school. I just feel I’m getting treated like royalty. They do a really good job for athletes here.”
Read more: Azcentral.com