NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ -- Sara (Autumn) Keats-O'Connor, a senior on the New Providence High School girls swim team, on Tuesday signed a letter of intent to attend Tulane University, where she will continue her athletic career.
Keats-O'Connor last month was crowned the 2020 Union County champion in the 100-meter breaststroke with a time of 1:04.75, and the 200 IM with a time of 2:07.31.
She swam a time of 2:05.03 in the 200-yard butterfly for the Summit Area YMCA in December, and a 2:06.17 in the 200 IM for the YMCA two months ago.
"This is incredible. This is going to be a great opportunity for Autumn," said Walter Kempner, New Providence girls' swim coach. "Tulane is a phenomenal institution academically and athletically.
"The times Autumn posted in the county meet, she set two New Providence High School records and missed the county record by 2/10 of a second in one of the events."
"Coaching Autumn has been a lot of fun, and I wish her a lot of luck," said New Providence swim coach Brian Cooper.
Keats-O'Connor is eager for the opportunity to swim for a Division 1 program.
"Their swim team is very good. They practice six mornings and three afternoons a week," Keats-O'Connor said. "I hope I can improve with the team. They have some very good swimmers.
Keats-O'Connor, who attends the Union County Magnet School in Scotch Plains, may study sports medicine at Tulane. This winter, she overcame a bout with walking pneumonia to post her two winning times in the Union County meet last month.
"I hope to improve on those times in the Meet of Champions," she said of the next big state event coming later this month.