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Individuals from the UNC women’s swimming team, the men’s wrestling team and the fencing teams will compete at their respective NCAA National Championships beginning Thursday.

Fourteen women from the swimming team, 11 in individual events and an additional three for relay alternates, will represent the Tar Heels in the 2014 NCAA Division I Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships at the University of Minnesota Aquatics Center in Minneapolis, Minn. The event will take place Thursday, Friday and Saturday.  Preliminaries each day begin at 11 a.m. CDT (12 p.m. EDT) and finals each night will be held at 7 p.m. CDT (8 p.m. EDT).

Carolina’s individual event swimmers are senior Cari Blalock, sophomore Lauren Earp, freshman Abby Fisher, senior Meredith Hoover, freshman Sarah Koucheki, sophomore Hannah Lincoln, sophomore Emma Nunn, senior Stephanie Peacock, junior Danielle Siverling and redshirt senior Carly Smith. Sophomore Ally Hardesty, freshman Sarah Hitchens and senior Katie Rechstein will compete in relays.

Four wrestlers qualified for the 2014 NCAA Division I Men’s Wrestling Championships in Oklahoma City, Okla. Matches begin on Thursday with rounds lasting through the finals on Saturday.

Returning All-America Evan Henderson (141 pounds) and ACC champion Nathan Kraisser (125 pounds) lead the Tar Heels, and will be joined by returning qualifier John Michael Staudenmayer (165 pounds) and first-time entrant Christian Barber (149 pounds).

Women’s sabre Gillian Litynski and men’s sabre Sam Austin will travel to Columbus, Ohio, for the 2014 National Collegiate Men’s and Women’s Fencing Championships. Including this season, Litynski will have competed at three consecutive national championships while Austin will be competing in his second championship.

Last season, Litynski finished third in the NCAA field to earn All-America honors. As a freshman in 2012, when the tournament also was held in Columbus, she was 18th. Austin finished 20th in 2013, when Tar Heels placed 13th overall. The team finish is determined by the combined performances of a school’s men’s and women’s competitors.

By Helen Buchanan, UNC News Services

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Published March 20, 2014.