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November 19, 2023

For information on enrollment and registration at Notre Dame Prep, an independent, Catholic, International Baccalaureate school, please visit the admissions section of our website here.

Longtime NDP swim and dive coach Mark McGreevy ND'76 discusses the Irish performance at this year's MHSAA D3 State Swimming Championships at Oakland University where they matched the school's all-time best finish.

Notre Dame Prep's girls swim team at the 2023 Swim and Dive State Championship Meet for Division 3. More photos on Facebook.

By Mark McGreevy ND'76

The Notre Dame Prep girls varsity swim and dive team turned a few heads yesterday at Oakland University, which was the location of the 2023 Swim and Dive State Championship Meet for Division 3. Seven girls made the short trek from NDP down Walton to Oakland University.

NDP entered the meet ranked 14th and Friday's performances by the Irish certainly set the tone that this was going to be an exceptional day. The girls swam strong, qualifying one girl in the top 16 in every event they entered along with the three relays. The first event, the 200 medley relay, had NDP seeded 15th, but the girls weren't going to stand for that! Tessa Boehme, Berkleigh Kennedy, Olivia Powell and Rita Hajjar finished 12th to start the day. 

Next up was the 200 freestyle with Tessa Boehme seeded 16th and sophomore Mia Skandalaris seeded 26th. Tessa pulled out a personal best in the 200 free on Friday and then another on Saturday to place 13th while Mia missed the top 16 by just a couple of hundredths of a second, taking 17th place. But stay tuned. She was most certainly not done! 

Next up, Emma Ciesla swam the 200 IM, finishing in the top eight and earning All-State honors, taking fifth. Next up was the 50 yard freestyle with Olivia Powell seeded 37th in a field of 47 swimmers, while Rita Hajjar was seeded 32nd. Olivia blasted her way to 14th place with a personal best time and earning some needed points for the team.

After the diving events on Saturday, the 100 yard butterfly was held with Emma Ciesla placing fourth, once again earning All-State honors. NDP had no entries in the 100 freestyle so our next event was the 500 freestyle and Mia Skandalaris made her comeback. Seeded 16th in the B heat, Mia refused to finish last in her heat and pushed her way to 14th earning some more valuable points. 

At that time, with four events to go, NDP was sitting 10th, which was the team goal for the meet. We had swimmers in each of the next four events: two being relays where the Irish sat in eighth position. The 200 free relay consisting of Rita Hajjar, Tori Devine, Olivia Powell and Emma Ciesla held their eighth spot, again earning All-State honors for the girls. 

Next up was Tessa Boehme — who had already produced three personal best times throughout the day — in the 100 backstroke. On Friday, Tessa saw a personal best and she was not done! Again, she has a personal best and went from the 16th seed to a 10th place finish with a time of 1:00.94. 

Next up for the Fighting Irish? The freshman. 

Berkleigh Kennedy stepped into her first state meet seeded dead last at 34th. But. . . she wanted no part of that! Berkleigh lit up the field, gaining 19 spots to finish 15th. By then, NDP as a team was sitting at 10th place, just four points away from 9th heading into the last relay. 

Tessa Boehme, who had been rock solid Saturday as well as all season long, led the girls off. Mia Skandalaris, Olivia Powell and Emma Ciesla finished the job, placing seventh, gaining one spot from an eighth place seed. The girls knew they had 10th place covered, however, but to everyone's surprise, they jumped two spots and finished eighth. 

To summarize, seven girls from NDP headed to Oakland University and seven girls came home with All-State honors! NDP finished eighth overall in the state, tying their all-time best position. Expected to finish 14th, the girls pushed themselves to achieve All-State Team honors for themselves and teammates! 

Great job, girls! I am very proud of you!

For information on enrollment and registration at Notre Dame Prep, an independent, Catholic, International Baccalaureate school, please visit the admissions section of our website here.

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Follow Notre Dame on Twitter at @NDPMA.

About Notre Dame Preparatory School 
Notre Dame Preparatory School is a private, Catholic, independent, coeducational day school located in Oakland County. Notre Dame Preparatory School's upper school enrolls students in grades nine through twelve and has been named one of the nation's best 50 Catholic high schools (Acton Institute) four times since 2005. Notre Dame Prep's middle and lower schools enroll students in pre-kindergarten through grade eight. All three schools are International Baccalaureate "World Schools." NDPMA is conducted by the Marist Fathers and Brothers and is accredited by the Independent Schools Association of the Central States and the National Association of Independent Schools. For more on Notre Dame Preparatory School, visit the school’s home page at