By Adam Cavalier
Carson-Newman freshman swimmer Paul Ungur recently returned to his home country of Romania to compete in the Romanian National Championships.
When Ungur prepared to leave Europe to return to Mossy Creek, he had some extra hardware in his bags. Ungur picked up his third Romanian National Title as he won the 50 backstroke.
“It was harder than before because I had to travel a lot. I had to taper here and then travel for a long time,” Ungur said. “As I got there, I was a little tired. I had to get used to the time and everything and it was more of a challenge for me.”
The Romanian National Championships gave Ungur an opportunity to display his school colors. And the orange and blue generated a buzz around the pool deck.
“A lot of swimmers came and talked to me and they asked ‘Who is Carson-Newman? We have never heard of them,'” Ungur said. “We have some athletes that are competing in Division-I schools in the USA so they have only heard about them and as they saw me with these results and doing fast times, they were very impressed and they started knowing more about Carson-Newman.”
For swim coach Paige McCord, having a swimmer with the caliber of Ungur helps her build her two-year-old program.
“We are just really proud of Paul, in Romania specifically. He did a fantastic job and represented Carson-Newman very, very well. Really proud of him in all aspects, great young man,” McCord said. “I think it definitely helps with some recruiting and we have already done that in a couple of other areas.”