Nov. 24, 2008
BOSTON, Mass. - The Bulldogs took ninth place this past weekend at the Terrier Invitational hosted by Boston University. The invitational was won by the host school with a total of 890.5 points. Distantly trailing the Terriers were Northeastern (691) and UMass (617.5). The Bulldogs did not enter nearly as many swimmers as the other schools, but still managed to score 47 points.
The Bulldogs were underrepresented in a strong invitational, but they still managed to put together some great individual stories. With two different meets occurring this weekend, the team had to be split and the Yale coaches decided to send eight women swimmers to Boston. Senior Sara Fracapane, freshman Athena Liao, senior Emily Cole, sophomore Kristen Forsberg, junior Laura E Grigereit, junior Jennifer Karinen, freshman Meaghan Watters and sophomore Angela Yu all competed for the Bulldogs this weekend.
The stories of the meet were Fracapane and Liao, according to Cole.
"Sara had a really tough lineup all weekend and swam really well, especially for right now in the season," said Cole. "She swam the three longest races in the meet."
Fracapane swam in the 500-yard freestyle, 400-yard medley relay, 200-yard medley relay, 200-yard freestyle, 800-yard freestyle, 1650-yard freestyle and 200-yard butterfly. Her big individual race came on Sunday in the 1650-yard freestyle, where she took ninth place and picked up nine points for the Bulldogs. She swam the event in a time of 17:57.33. Fracapane was also part of a number of relays that scored points. On Sunday, the 400-yard freestyle relay team, consisting of sophomore Yu, Grigereit, Cole, and Fracapane, took 15th place and scored four points. The team finished the race in a time of 3:49.36. Fracapane also helped two relays score points on Friday and Saturday. On Friday, the 400-yard medley relay took 14th place and six points in a time of 4:13.44. The team consisted of Yu, Liao, Fracapane and Grigereit. That same team also scored points on Saturday in the 200-yard medley relay. They took 15th place and four points in a time of 1:57.92. Fracapane helped score 23 total points for the Bulldogs, almost half of the team's overall score.
Liao, on the other hand, was a freshman competing in her first collegiate three-day meet and got to compete in a night session on the last day. She swam in the B-Final of the 200-yard breaststroke and came away with a ninth place overall finish. She scored nine points for the Bulldogs in a time of 2:24.31, which according to Cole, was even more impressive considering it was Sunday night.
"Sunday is always the toughest day because people are tired and sore, but everyone came out and swam fast," said Cole. "It is hard to come back after Sunday morning and swim faster, but people stayed mentally and physically strong."
Liao also scored points individually in the 100-yard backstroke. She came in tenth place in a time of 1:07.40 and scored seven points.
Yale's only other points came in the 800-yard freestyle relay. The team of Karinen, Liao, Forsberg and Watters came in 15th place. They scored four points for the Bulldogs in a time of 8:38.57.
Despite not really having a chance to win the team tournament, the Bulldogs felt this was a really important invitational from them.
"More than anything, this invitational is really good practice," said Cole. "We do not get an opportunity to swim many three-day meets, so it is good practice for the Ivy League Championship which is a three-day meet."
Yale returns to action Monday afternoon at Southern Connecticut State for a dual meet. The diving will take place at Yale in the Kiphuth Exhibition Pool at 2 p.m. The swimmers will do battle at SCSU at 4 p.m.
Report filed by Charles Moore '10, Yale Sports Publicity