UNC Asheville women’s swimming assistant coach is former Texas A&M standout Rebecca (Sturdy) Westfall who returns for her second season with the Bulldogs.
During her first season, the Blue and White more than tripled their best Coastal Collegiate Swimming Association Conference Championship point total with 422 points and their highest-ever team finish. The Bulldogs also broke 10 varsity and five freshmen records.
A biomechanics and technique specialist, Westfall brings a variety of experience to the Asheville program. She has published a series of articles on kinetic energy and movement through the water which are published on SwimSwam.com.
Previously, Westfall has been an assistant coach under Andrew Pulsifer at Warren Wilson College the past two years. In addition, she served as the Interim Head Coach and Aquatics Director at Emory & Henry College during the 2011-12 campaign.
Her first collegiate coaching position came at Adams State College in Alamosa, Colo., where she was the Director of Swimming and Aquatics for two years. During her tenure, Westfall created the first-ever women’s team and brought back the men’s program for the first time since the 1970’s.
While at Texas A&M, Westfall was an eight-time all-American, nine-time Big XII champion and 2004 Big XII Newcomer of the Year. As a freshman, she won the 100 and 200 backstroke events and anchored the 400 and 800 free relays, winning the Aggies’ first-ever conference relay titles. She suffered shoulder injuries as a sophomore and junior, but rallied to make a senior comeback. In 2007, Westfall won the 100 butterfly and took second in the 50 free, which helped the Aggie squad to the school’s first-ever team Big XII title and an eighth-place finish nationally.
During her fifth year, Westfall served as a student assistant coach for one semester at Texas A&M and worked with Olympians, Julia Wilkinson (Canada), Triin Aliiand (Estonia) Alia Atkinson (Jamaica), and Christine Marshall (USA) as well as U.S. National Team member Kristen Heiss.
Westfall is married to Bulldog athletic trainer James Westfall and resides in Asheville with their yellow lab, Hoss.