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Melaina Howard has announced her commitment to Colorado Mesa University, beginning this fall. She is wrapping up her senior year at Westlake High School, in Austin, Texas. She also trains and competes year-round with Austin Swim Club.
“I am extremely excited to announce my commitment to Colorado Mesa University. I would love to thank my family, friends and coaches for being there for me throughout this entire process. And I would love to thank the mavericks for letting me join the family! Go Mavs! 🤘🏼❤️🤍🤘🏼”
Howard specializes in distance freestyle, and holds Futures cuts in the 800m free, 500 free, and 1500m free. Her highest finish at Futures this summer was 19th in the 1500m free (17:49.19). Additionally, she earned 31st in the 400m free (4:33.07) and 23rd in the 800 (9:22.32). Prior to Futures, she competed locally at the Austin Speedo Sectional meet, where she recorded personal bests in the 400 (4:29.231) and 800 (9:10.80).
Top SCY Times
200 free – 1:55.41
500 free – 5:01.90
1000 free – 10:25.93
1650 free – 17:17.79
Howard has already set a slew of best times this season, including in the 1650. At a club meet in October, she clocked a best time of 17:17.79 to take 15 seconds off her previous best from last March. Her 200 breaststroke is another event to keep an eye on. Until this year, she hadn’t competed in it since 2020 when she swam a 2:35.90. Already, she’s been as fast as 2:23.68 and improves every time she swims it.
Colorado Mesa is a Division II school that competes in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference. The women have been dominant in the conference, and recently won their conference 5th consecutive title this past weekend. Howard’s best 1650 time would have earned 2nd at conference, while her 1000 would have been 4th and her 500 would have been 3rd.
Colorado Mesa’s distance squad was led by Olivia Hansson, Amelia Kinnard, and Haven Hinkle this year. Hansson took first in the 1000 and 500 with times of 10:06.21 and 4:53.50, respectively. Behind her, Kinnard and Hinkle clocked times of 17:33.38 and 17:45.23 to earn 2nd and 3rd in the 1650. Hansson and Hinkle are currently both freshmen, meaning Howard will overlap with them for a total of three years.
Howard joins Sydnee Oneil, Hanna Sasivarevic, and Kyla Babson in Colorado Mesa’s class of 2027. Babson is the only other distance freestyler of the group, while Sasivarevic is more sprint-oriented and Oneil focuses on free and fly.
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