Women's Swimming and Diving

Head Coach Arthur Wang

Arthur Wang

Arthur Wang is in his seventh season as varsity men's and women's swimming and diving coach.

His teams have shown steady growth in his previous six seasons, including the school's first-ever National Champion, diver Kelly Sponholz, this past year. In 2008-2009, the Devil men and women both finished in fifth-place at the SUNYAC championship meet.  

In addition to a national champion, Wang has seen Sponholz earn eight All American citations. Previously, Scott Horsington was also an All American under Wang's guidance.

In 2007-2008, the Blue Devil men saw their biggest improvement, jumping up to a fifth-place finish, three places higher than the previous campaign. In that same year, Noor El-Tahawy became the second Blue Devil to win a SUNYAC title since Scott Horsington's freshman campaign.  

Outside the pool, the Devils have excelled in the classroom. Alex Palmquist earned the SUNYAC Chancellor's Award for 2009. The honor is bestowed upon the all-conference competitor with the highest GPA in his sport. It was the third consecutive year that a Blue Devil earned the award in men's swimming and diving. Scott Horsington had won it the previous two seasons.

The women's team was recognized for the third straight year by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) for its achievement in the classroom. As a group, they earned a GPA over 3.0.

Wang has also been responsible for organizing team training trips to unique locales such as San Juan, Puerto Rico, as well as Honolulu and throughout Florida during the school's winter break.

A native of Ithaca, N.Y., Wang has 13 seasons of college coaching experience -- including one season (1999-2000) as interim head coach at Pomona-Pitzer Colleges in Claremont, Calif. He helped guide the Sagehens to a 29th place finish at the 2000 NCAA Division III championship meet. He also served as assistant women's polo coach at Pomona-Pitzer.

Wang, who also serves as director of aquatics, spent three swim seasons as assistant men's and women's swimming and diving coach at Washington University, a nationally prominent NCAA Division III program in St. Louis, Mo. The Washington men and women each finished 10th at the NCAA Division III championships during the 2002-2003 season. The two teams combined to qualify 15 student-athletes for nationals after each team finished second in its conference, the University Athletic Association. Team members were responsible for eight new conference records during the 2002-03 season and the coaching staff was named UAA Coaching Staff of the Year. Wang earned the added distinction of AFLAC National Assistant of the Year for 2003.

His first swim coaching job came at his collegiate alma mater, Ithaca College, as a women's assistant coach from 1994-1999. During his final season at Ithaca (1998-99), he also worked as assistant men's and women's coach at Cornell University. His resume includes eight summers as a coach at the Stanford National Swim Camp, where he has worked alongside U.S. Olympic head swim coaches Richard Quick and Skip Kenney, and one season as head swim coach at the Ithaca YMCA.

Wang currently spends his summers working at the University Texas swim camp as the head counselor and assistant swim coach. At Texas, he continues to work alongside several Olympic swimmers and head U.S. Men's Olympic coach Eddie Reese.

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Assistant Coach John Crawford

John Crawford

Former Blue Devil head coach and Fredonia State Athletics Hall of Fame member John Crawford has a long and storied past. After a long stint as the school's head coach, he has spent the past six seasons serving as the Devils diving coach. In February of 2009, Crawford had the distinction of coaching the team's first-ever national champion. Diver Kelly Sponholz won the 3-meter springboard and set an NCAA D-III record with 516.50 points at the NCAA Meet in Minneapolis. She was the runner-up in the 1-meter board.

In the six years since he has returned, Fredonia State divers have won 11 SUNYAC championships on the 1-meter and 3-meter boards. They have scored over 100 points in the team competition in each of the last four conference meets.

The run of Blue Devil champion divers began in 2003-2004 when freshman Scott Horsington won SUNYAC titles in both the 1-meter and 3-meter springboard competitions. In 2005-06,  Kelly Sponholz won SUNYAC titles off both boards as a freshman. She set the conference record in the 1-meter event at the SUNYAC Championship meet. Sponholz earned honorable mention All-American honors with 11th- and 15th-place finishes at the NCAA Division III Championships.

In the following year, Fredonia State had three divers qualify for the NCAA Division III Championships. SUNYAC champion on both boards, Sponholz gained All-American status for her third place and fifth places in the 1-meter and 3- meter events. Returning after two seasons away from competition, Scott Horsington earned honorable mention NCAA All-American at both levels.

Four Blue Devil divers posted NCAA qualifying scores in the 2007-2008 season. Kelly Sponholz shattered both the SUNYAC three meter record and conference meet record. She was accompanied on the podium twice by teammate Teresa MacInnes as they finished first and second, respectively, on both boards. Sponholz's 1-meter performance was matched by Scott Horsington, who won the SUNYAC 1-meter championship. Horsington gained All-American honors in the same event. Again, Sponholz was a two time All-American for her performance at the NCAA Championships in March. The Fredonia State divers' excellence on the boards was matched by their performance in the classroom. All six divers maintained a 3.0 or better average.

Head Swim Coach from 1980-1988, Crawford was on the deck when the Blue Devil men won the SUNYAC team championships in 1983-84 and 1987-88. The 1983-84 season also saw Crawford earn the SUNYAC Coach of the Year award. Some of the student-athletes he recruited still hold Fredonia State team records.

A resident of Dunkirk, Crawford taught social studies for 34 years at Lake Shore Central School. He is presently a world geography instructor in the Department of History at Fredonia State.

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Page modified 11/4/09