Sports

Lukawski ’22 powers Bears to victory

First-year wins 100, 200 breaststroke events, helps 200 medley to close second-place finish

By
Staff Writer
Friday, February 1, 2019

The women’s swimming and diving team hosted Cornell Saturday in its last non-playoff meet of the season, and after honoring Bruno’s graduating class in a ceremony, the teams took to the pool. But the star of the day wasn’t a senior: It was Audrey Lukawski ’22, who won two individual events.

Lukawksi’s relay team first swam to a second-place finish in the 200 medley, finishing 0.13 seconds behind the winning team, another Brown squad. Lukawksi then went on to win both the 100 and 200 breaststroke, and helped the Bears to an overwhelming 230-72 victory over the Big Red.

Outside the pool, Lukawksi enjoys steak-frites, sea salt ‘n’ vinegar chips and rock climbing, according to her profile on BrownBears.com. She is from San Francisco and loves the Golden State Warriors, and her favorite non-aquatic activity is doing crossword puzzles. But Lukawksi’s competitive mentality is perhaps best summed up by her favorite quote: “You know what they say: ‘Fool me once, strike one; but fool me twice … strike three.’”

For her impressive performance en route to a dominant win over an Ivy League rival, Lukawski has been named The Herald’s Athlete of the Week.

Herald: You had a fantastic performance against Cornell last weekend — you won your two individual races and finished a close second in your relay by less than two tenths of a second. Going in, how did you feel? Did you expect to swim so well?

Lukawski: It was really exciting for me, because this was our last home meet of the season, and it was our senior meet to honor these incredible ladies who had four amazing years. I was really excited to be able to close out the season on top.

Let’s go back a little: How did you first get into swimming?

I started swimming when I was pretty young, just because my mom wanted me to be drown-proof. I started swimming competitively on a club team when I was seven, and that pretty quickly became my main activity — it’s been a while.

You talked about how your big win over Cornell came on senior day. Talk about how your senior class has been — and going forward, now that you’ve only got a few meets left this year, how you feel about losing the seniors and transitioning into next season.

It’s really crazy how some people that I just met four months ago can have such a big impact on my entire experience at Brown. They were so helpful, especially at the beginning of the first semester when we were first transitioning to life at college and college swimming. Their determination and drive and the positivity that they bring every single day is really unmatched, and I’m going to be so sad to not be able to be on a team with them next year.

Moving in a different direction: You’re from San Francisco, and you’re a Warriors fan. So, true or false: Klay Thompson, when he’s really feeling it and has the touch, is literally the best offensive player in history.

I’m going to go true on that one. I saw his history-making game, where he scored the most three-pointers in the third quarter, so that was really, really, really exciting. That pretty much cemented my loyalty to the Warriors two or three years ago.

I also saw that your favorite quote comes from The Office, so my question is, besides Pam and Erin, who is the best Dunder Mifflin receptionist?

Ronnie.

Yes! Because all she does is plop herself down. … Okay, finally, what’s your favorite Brown on-campus meal?

Ooh, this is really tough. … I’m probably going to have to go with burrito bowls at the Blue Room on Wednesday nights.

The Bears will return to action Feb. 20 in the Ivy League Championships at Princeton.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.