The honor is the first for Freriks, a lifelong Norwalk resident and 10-time All-Ohioan at Norwalk and Sandusky.
Freriks, who became the third Wildcat in program history to win multiple SEC titles when she outswam the field last season to earn gold in the 500 freestyle, made headlines Friday for her swim in the 1,000 free.
The freestyle specialist touched the pad at 9:30.78 to break a 20-year school record that is now 19th all-time best in the world. Freriks improved the program record by more than 10 seconds. Rachel Komisarz who posted a 9:41.53 in 1999 previously held the top spot.
The seven-time NCAA All-American began this season fourth on Kentucky's all-time performance list in the event with a 9:51.27. However, she reset her personal best with a 9:49.15 in Jan. 2019, which would remain fourth, before shedding nearly 20 seconds in less than a month to reach her pinnacle swim. It was the last time Freriks will swim the 1,000 free competitively as it is not an event sponsored at the SEC nor NCAA level.
Freriks has nine gold finishes in 11 individual events in 2019. She's also won four of her five 1,000 free swims in dual meets this season, which was achieved in consecutive dual meets.
Freriks' program record in the 1,000 free adds to her long list of achievements. She now holds three individual records in short-course yards — 200, 500 and 1,000 free, which makes her the program's leading record holder with 12 total school records.
The SEC championships will be held Feb. 19-23 at the University of Georgia, with the NCAAs slated for March 20-23 at the University of Texas.
Freriks will again swim the 100, 200 and 500 free along with multiple relays at the SEC championships. She won the 200 free in 2017 and the 500 free last season.