'Forty Flames to Follow' in 2013-14: Veronica Gibson|
June 22, 2013
CHICAGO - The UIC women's swimming & diving team racked up a flurry of honors during the Horizon League Championships at Flames Natatorium last March. Among the honorees was freshman Veronica Gibson, who was tabbed the League's Newcomer of the Meet. Gibson is the latest student-athlete to be featured in the "Forty Flames to Follow" summer series.
Gibson's Newcomer of the Meet plaudit came on the heels of a stellar individual performance at the four-day League meet.
"Through hard work and determination, Veronica has become one of best all-around swimmers in the Horizon League," said head coach Paul Moniak. "She played a vital role in our women's team becoming a legitimate contender."
She swam the 1,000 freestyle in 10:10.20 on day one of the Horizon League Championship, which was the Flames' best tally in the event on the season. She also posted UIC's fastest time in the 1,650 freestyle (17:05.81) and the 400 Individual Medley (4:23.65). Gibson finished first in the 1,000 free, and second in the 400 IM, setting an individual school record.
Gibson wasted no time getting acclimated to the competition at the Division I level. In the season-opening win over Wright State, she finished first in the 1000 free (10:39.49) and 200 fly (2:13.36), and second in the 500 free (5:13.53). Two weeks later at Eastern Illinois, she captured the 400 IM (4:38.28) and 100 fly (59.57) titles.
Gibson won the 1000 free (10:40.74), 200 fly (2:10.20) and 500 free (5:15.23) at Milwaukee on Nov. 3, and collected first-place finishes in the 200 free (1:59.19) and 100 fly (1:00.47) one week later versus IIT and Butler.
The Windy City native claimed individual medalist honors in the 200 free (1:59.17) and finished second in the 500 free (5:15.47) at Western Illinois (Dec. 15). Gibson also finished first in the 1000 free (10:25.10) and 500 free (5:05.69) against Green Bay on Jan. 12 before her standout performance at the season-ending Horizon League Championship.
Gibson was one-of-three UIC student-athletes to receive individual recognition at the 2013 Horizon League Championship. Melanie Waszak was named the Swimmer of the Meet, and Whitney Johnson was tabbed the Diver of the Meet. Moniak also received Coach of the Year honors, as did Diving Coach Susan Bromberg.