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FHSAA Florida 1A State Finalist Elena Dinehart (2023) commits to East Carolina

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Elena Dinehart from Cutler Bay, Florida, has committed to swim and graduate school at East Carolina University beginning fall 2023. ECU has rebuilt its women’s team after being cut in 2020 and reinstated in 2021.

“I am very pleased to announce my verbal commitment to continue my academic and athletic career at East Carolina University! Thank you to my family, friends and coaches who have helped me get to where I am today. I am very happy to be part of such a special team! I can’t wait to be a pirate!”

Dinehart is currently a senior at Cutler Bay Senior High School and swims year-round for the South Florida Aquatic Club. She has a fairly even split between freestyle, backstroke and butterfly with Futures Championships cuts in all three disciplines.

At the FHSAA Florida 1A State Championships, Dinehart set a personal best in her 100-yard freestyle (52.91) while leading the relay for Cutler Bay High School’s 4×100 freestyle relay. She also set a best time in the 100-yard backstroke heats of 56.56, which took her to the finals where she placed 10th. At the 2021 SOFL FGC Senior Championships, Dinehart had bests in her 100-yard fly (11th, 56.34) and placed second in the final in her 200-yard back (1:58.54).

Best times SCY:

  • 100 free — 52.91
  • 200 free – 1:51.39
  • 100 back — 56.56
  • 200 back – 1:58.54
  • 100 fly — 56.34
  • 200 fly — 2:06.59
  • 200IM — 2:06.51

At the 2022 American Athletic Conference Championships, the ECU women finished last out of five teams. They only had a roster of 14 swimmers, which is fairly small for a DI mid-major, but they have consistently rebuilt their roster after being cut in 2020 and reinstated in 2021. ECU almost doubled their roster for the 2022-2023 season, with ten members of the team being newcomers.

Dinehart will have a few options for what she could swim at the AAC Conference Championships. On day one her best time in the 200 IM would have been 14th with only one ECU swimmer in the event. On day two, she would have placed 15th in the 100-yard fly, 15th in the 200-yard free flight, and 8th in the 100-yard back. On the last day she would have finished 4th from 200, making her the only ECU swimmer in the A final. Dinehart’s third event will likely be determined by ECU depth in the 200 IM, 100 Fly and 200 Free, with Dinehart swimming which event she projects to score the most points.

Dinehart will join a class of 2027 with a total of five freshmen made up of three other swimmers: Carlie Clements, Campbell Murawski and Danielle McCarthy.

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