MOUNT AIRY, N.C. - A year ago, former East Surry swimming standout Mikki Nunn wrapped up a career with the Lady Cardinals that included four straight conference titles and three straight years as the highest-finishing 1A traditional school in the state.
Prior to graduation, she signed with Converse College in Spartanburg, S.C., and two months after that, she ended her junior career with a spectacular performance at the Powerade State Games of North Carolina, where she won two gold medals, three silvers and a bronze in the women's 17-18 division.
Her success continued last fall, when she began her college career by making her debut in the Converse Women's Invite on Oct. 12. Nunn earned points for her team with a fourth-place finish in the 100 breaststroke and a seventh in the 100 individual medley. She also took part in a 400 medley relay team that placed second.
Like most college swim teams, the Valkyries had a long season that ran from the fall until the early spring, wrapping up with the NCAA Division II finals in March.
In mid-November, Nunn had a breakout performance in the 2018 Sheraton/Le Meridien Fall Frenzy at Queens University in Charlotte. In the 100 breaststroke, she posted a season-best time, and then had a personal-best time in the 200. Her 200 time of 2:37.19 was one of the 10 best times in school history for the event. Converse didn't win any events as a team, since the meet was filled with Division I schools, but it defeated all of its Conference Carolinas rivals during the three-day event.
She had a new career-best time in the 100 backstroke in a Jan. 19 meet at home against Brenau University, where the Valkyries took four of the top five positions. The performance, on the second day of the two-day meet, lifted Converse to the win, 147.5-145.5.
At the four-day conference championship tournament in Charlotte, where Conference Carolinas and the Bluegrass Mountain Conference held a joint meet, Converse finished third behind Emmanuel and Barton colleges. Nunn was 10th in the 200 IM on day two, then had one of the best performances of her freshman season on day three, when she represented the Valkyries in the 100 breaststroke and came in second with a time of 1:07.53. She was the only freshman swimmer to finish in the top 10, and missed a conference title to Emmanuel star Julia Simioni by about one second.
She followed that up with a fourth-place in the 200 breast the next day, eventually accounting for more than 30 points for her team all by herself.
*Story courtesy of John Cate- The Mount Airy News*