Olympic SplashGAMBIER, Ohio (August 7, 2008) Andrejs Duda '06 will be one of at least fifty athletes to represent Latvia's largest-ever summer team at the Olympics in Beijing. A former Kenyon swimmer and native of Jelgava, Latvia, Duda qualified for the global competition in the 100-meter butterfly and the 200-meter individual medley events.
Duda is actually a veteran of the Olympic scene. He, along with fellow Kenyon swimming alum, Agnese Ozolina '04, swam at the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece. At that time, Duda placed fifty-third in the 100-meter butterfly, while Ozolina placed forty-third in the women's 100-meter freestyle.
Throughout his Kenyon career, Duda led the Lords to four consecutive national championships and collected a College-record twenty-four NCAA event titles. Nine of those titles were won in individual events—another Kenyon men's record. He was a twenty-seven-time All-America award winner and in his senior year of 2006 was named both the North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) and NCAA Division III swimmer of the year. His name is still attached to one NCAA Division III relay record (400-yard medley) and two individual conference records (200-yard individual medley and the 200-yard backstroke).
Although Olympic events start Saturday, Duda will have a few days to become acclimated to the National Aquatics Center, where preliminary heats for the 200-meter individual medley begin on Wednesday, August 13. The next day, preliminaries for the 100-meter butterfly will get underway.The Kenyon men's swimming program has won twenty-nine consecutive NCAA Division III championships. That's the longest streak in the history of the NCAA, including all of its sports and all of its divisions. The Lords' amazing run, which began in 1980, dwarfs the NCAA's next longest active streak of eleven titles, owned by the Methodist University women's golf team.