Auburn Picks Up Winter Juniors Finalist Jade Castro (2023)

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Jade Castro has announced her commitment to Auburn University, beginning with the 2023-2024 season this fall. Castro, a USA Swimming Scholastic All-American, is wrapping up her senior year at State College Area High School, located in State College, Pennsylvania. Castro also trains and competes year-round with Nittany Lion Aquatic Club.

She commented on her commitment to SwimSwam:

I chose Auburn because of the amazing coaching staff, the team environment, and the growing success of the team! I can’t wait for what is to come! War Eagle!”

Castro primarily swims backstroke, but also frequently competes in fly and IM. This past December, she competed at Winter Juniors – East, where she placed as high as 5th in the 100 backstroke. She dropped nearly a second from the previous year to clock a 53.70 in prelims. She also advanced to the B-final in the 200 back, where she dropped almost two seconds to finish 15th with a 1:56.90. Her other events included the 100 fly and 200 IM, where she earned 38th and 94th, respectively.

Most recently Castro raced at the Pennsylvania District 6 Championships, where she won both the 100 back (55.16) and 200 IM (2:04.20), securing her spot at the PIAA State Championships that will be held later this month. Last year at the state meet, Castro finished 2nd in the 100 back (54.33) and 4th in the 200 IM (2:04.93).

Top SCY Times: 

100 back – 53.70
200 back – 1:56.90
100 fly – 55.48
200 fly – 2:03.96
200 IM – 2:03.21

Since head coach Ryan Wochomurka took over the program in April of 2021, the women have moved from a 9th place finish at the 2021 SEC Championships to now two 7th place finishes. This year, it took a 53.56 and a 1:56.20 to advance to the C-final in the 100 and 200 backstroke, respectively. Castro is currently just shy of that range in both events, but with small drops she could quickly get into scoring position.

Meghan Lee was the highest finisher for Auburn in the 200 back at 14th place (1:54.47). Ellie Waldrep and Kensley Merritt swam in the C-final, touching at 20th (1:55.63) and 24th (1:56.57).  Lee again led the way in the 100 back with a 5th place finish (51.90), followed by Waldrep in 8th (52.73). All three will be around for another year, giving Castro the chance to train with a deep group of backstrokers. 

Auburn has built a massive class of 2027, including: Wyllo Hanson, Carissa Rinard, Morgan Carteaux, Lawson Ficken, Katie Russell, Maggie McGuire, Olivia Dinehart, Zoey Zeller, Kara West, Aislyn Barnett, and Michelle Kaner.

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