May 18, 2011
Texas A&M women’s swimmers Rita Medrano and Lili Ibáñez qualified for and will compete in the 2011 Pan American Games that will be held in Guadalajara, Mexico on Oct. 14-30, 2011.
Ibáñez, a to-be sophomore at A&M, qualified for the 50, 100 and 200 meter freestyle events, but will only compete in the 100 and 200 at the Games.
Ibáñez made the cut for the 50 and 100 meter events at the 2010 Central American and Caribbean games on July 18-23 with times of 26.02 and 59.29, respectively. Ibáñez also qualified for the 200 meter freestyle after placing first at the 2011 Olimpiada Nacional with a time of 2:01.35.
Medrano, who will be a senior this fall at A&M, qualified for three events (100 meter butterfly, 200 meter butterfly and 200 meter individual medley), but is only swimming in one of the events (100 meter butterfly).
Medrano earned her spots for the events after placing first in the 200 meter butterfly at the 2010 Central American and Caribbean games on July 18-23. Her 2:11.25 time was good enough to secure her the gold medal. She also qualified in the 100 meter butterfly and 200 meter individual medley with silver medal performances of 1:00.21 and 2:18.80, respectively.
The Pan American Games will be held in Mexico, the home country of both Ibáñez and Medrano. Medrano said the opportunity to compete in Mexico is very special.
“I have never had the opportunity to compete internationally in my own country,” Medrano said. “But I know every time I go to compete in nationals, I return so happy because of all the support I get. I can only image how exciting and fun it is going to be next October. I am excited about having my family cheering up for me too. I know the environment is going to be awesome, and I can't wait to try to get the people fired up.”