The wins have been racking up for Eastern Michigan University swimmer Monica Dorszewski this year.
As the old saying goes, some of the best things in life come in pairs, and most of her wins have come in the majority of breaststroke events she has participated in this campaign. Her triumphs in the pool have also led to the success of the Eastern Michigan women’s squad.
The junior swimmer hails from Palatine, Ill., in suburban Chicago.
She got into swimming after seeing her next door neighbor get into the sport. The neighbor quit, but Dorszewski was persistent in keeping at it.
From there, she went on to swim for Palatine High School. During her time there, she collected varsity letters all four years and was selected team captain in her senior season for the Pirates.
“I liked high school swimming,” Dorszewski said. “It’s a lot different from club swimming, and my high school’s swimming wasn’t the greatest but we had really great coaches.”
When it came time to choose colleges to attend, Dorszewski had offers from Eastern Michigan University, Illinois State University, St. Bonaventure University, and the University of North Carolina-Wilmington. But what got her to go to EMU was the coaching staff as well as her eventual teammates during her recruiting trip.
“[The coaches] really cared about me when they talked to me,” Dorszewski said. “When I came on my recruiting trip, the girls’ squad seemed like a team and not just a group of girls that are swimming, and I really want to be part of a big team.”
In her freshman year, she picked up wins in the 200-yard breaststroke versus the University of Akron, Miami University and Ohio University. She took a 12th place finish at the 2012 Mid-American Conference championship in the 100-breaststroke, with a time of 1 minute, 3.95 seconds. The time placed her seventh in Eastern Michigan University history in that event. Dorszewski also has a tenth place in the 100-yard breaststroke, touching the wall at 1:04.44.
In her sophomore campaign, Dorszewski picked up the top time (2:17.84) in the conference in the 200-breaststroke event at the MAC Championship held at the University at Buffalo. She also got the third-best time in the MAC in the 100-breaststroke at the same event.
This year, Dorszewski has won almost every event she has competed in individually. The only time she did not win was taking third in the 200-yard breaststroke in the first event of the 2013-14 season at Northwestern University Oct. 18.
She also finished second in the 200-breaststroke at this year’s EMU Invitational. Having seen all the progress she has made over the course of two years, Dorszewski has impressed herself with her individual performance.
“It’s really nice to see such improvement in just a couple of years,” Dorszewski said.
With the kind of season Dorszewski is having, the consistency is what coach Peter Linn and the rest of the Eagles have come to expect out of her.
“She started at breast stroke and we’ve put her at the middle distance events and she has continued to improve significantly,” Linn said.
Dorszewski also holds ninth place in school history in the 200-breaststroke (2:19.48) as well as seventh (1:03.95) and tenth (1:04.44) in the 100-breast. Dorszewski also recorded top times in the 100- and 200-breaststroke so far this year, both of them coming at home versus Oakland University, Nov. 9.
Dorszewski is a speech pathology major and plans to get a job as a speech therapist. She plans on attending grad school after graduation.