February 16, 2007

Bulldogs Set Five More School Records

Feb. 16, 2007

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Records are still dropping in New Jersey. Through the first two sessions of the 2007 Women's Ivy League Swimming and Diving Championships at Princeton, Yale swimmers have already broken seven school records. Despite these record breaking performances, however, the Bulldogs (770 points) still trail the host Tigers (1002 points) and Harvard (929.5 points). The Championships will conclude Saturday at the Denunzio Pool in Princeton, N.J.

The Bulldogs didn't skip a beat between Thursday and Friday, as they started Day 2 with a school record-breaking performance in the 200 yard medley relay. The team of senior Moira McCloskey, junior Caroline Dowd, freshman Andrea Clifford and senior captain Meg Gill finished second with a time of 1:43.12, besting the school record time of 1:43.73 that the same group had posted at the H-Y-P meet two weekends ago.

The 100 yard butterfly finals provided what was likely the most exciting race of the day, and Gill found herself in the middle of the mix again. With a win in the 50 Free already under her belt, the Chester, Va. native swam a Yale record 54.73 in the preliminaries, which was the fastest time of the meet and was only tenths of a second off of the Ivy Championships meet record.

But in the finals, Gill was touched out by Harvard junior Bridget O'Connor. Gill's time of 55.37 was also fast enough to break Yale's oldest standing record of 55.38 but was eight-hundredths of a second behind O'Connor's 55.29. With the performance, Gill qualified for a US National cut.

Freshman Jane Kim continued her teammates' record breaking ways, swimming a Yale record 1.48.95 in the 200 yard freestyle and thereby qualifying for a US National and NCAA B cut. She too, however, finished in second place: Princeton sophomore Justina DiFazio came in at 1:47.88. Senior Chase Butler took second in the 'B' final.

In the 100 yard breastroke, Sophomore Marilee Kiernan won the 'B' final with a time of 1:04.37, which bettered times posted by four of eight swimmers in the 'A' final.

On Thursday, in the 400 yard medley relay, McCloskey's first-leg of the school record-setting time was good enough to beat the Yale record in the 100 yard backstroke. So on Friday, she went ahead and made it official. The senior standout registered a winning time of 55.62, thereby breaking her own school record. The time was also a US National and NCAA B cut.

The night ended with the 800 yard freestyle relay, and the Bulldogs yet again set a school record. Kim, fellow freshman Laura Grigereit, Butler and Dowd swam a school record-setting time of 7:26.45. But, as seemed the theme of the day, the Bulldogs found themselves in third place behind Princeton and Harvard respectively.

Swimming will begin Saturday morning with the 200 backstroke preliminaries. Live scores and results can be found at the meet website.

Report filed by Nicholas Thorne '08, Yale Sports Publicity

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