Bulldogs Finish Third at Ivy League Championships

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Rachel Rosenberg. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – From top to bottom the entire Bulldog squad continued to excel as Yale rounded out three days of racing at the 2012 Ivy League Women's Swimming and Diving Championships on Saturday.  By defending her title in the 200-yard butterfly from last year, Hayes Hyde earned the title of career high point swimmer.  Captain Rachel Rosenberg was a clear winner in the three-meter diving event, setting new Ivy League and Yale records and bringing in diver of the meet honors.  The rest of the squad was equally impressive, as shown by Athena Liao, who dropped 2.43 seconds between heats and finals in the 200-yard breaststroke, and Alexandra Forrester, who set a Yale record in the heats of the 100-yard freestyle, an event she would go on to finish second in.  After 21 events the Bulldogs racked up 1075.5 points to finish in third place overall.  Harvard won the meet with 1478.5 points, followed by Princeton with 1310.5 points.

Morning Preliminaries

In the heats of the 200-yard backstroke Molly Albrecht just managed to land a spot in the final, finishing eighth with a time of 2:00.27.  Michelle Huang finished 23rd in a time of 2:07.62 to put herself in the bonus final.

Forrester had an exciting heat in the 100-yard freestyle, finishing first by a margin of 0.01 seconds.  Forrester went out at 23.38, the next fastest split a 23.73 from Princeton's Lisa Boyce, who narrowly beat Forrester in Thursday's 50-yard freestyle finals.  Forrester held on to touch the wall in 49.58 to Boyce's 49.59.  Forrester's time was faster than the NCAA B-cut of 50.19 and her own Yale record in the event (49.71) set an Ivy's two years ago.  Cynthia Tsay was not far behind the winning time, tying for sixth place with a time of 51.08.  Joan Weaver (51.55) finished 12th and Cassidy Lapp (52.03) finished 16th to head to the consolation final, while Helena Gali (52.07) and Rebecca DeLaFuente (52.17) finished 17th and 18th, respectively, to put themselves in the bonus final.

In the 200-yard breaststroke, Liao finished second in a time of 2:16.05.  Liao was in fourth with 150 yards down but had the second-fastest final 50 yards to put her in second place and break through the NCAA B-cut of 2:16.20.  Chelsea Dunlap (2:20.54), Elizabeth Larsen (2:21.62), Courtney Randolph (2:21.70), Angela Lee (2:22.71) and Jacqui Levere (2:23.73) all got a second swim in the bonus final.

Hyde positioned herself well in the heats of the 200-yard butterfly, clocking in at 1:59.73 for a close second place.  Hyde's time gets her an NCAA B-cut in the event.  Allison West finished 15th with a time of 2:04.46 for a spot in the consolation final.

Evening Finals

In the 1650-yard freestyle, Abigail Nunn finished 17th in a time of 17:09.53.

Albrecht then improved her standing in the 200-yard backstroke, following up the morning's eighth-fastest prelim time with a seventh-place finish in the final.  Albrecht clocked in at 2:00.51.  Huang finished sixth in the bonus final with a time of 2:06.54.

In the 100-yard freestyle Forrester finished second in a time of 49.69.  Forrester and Boyce were the only two swimmers to go sub-24 for the first 50 yards, but Boyce would go on to win it.  Tsay took seventh with a time of 51.19.  Weaver won the consolation final to finish ninth overall with a time of 50.60, while Lapp finished 16th with a time of 52.23.  Gali (52.17) and DeLaFuente (52.52) finished 19th and 21st, respectively.

Watch video of Forrester and Tsay in the 100-yard freestyle final here.

Liao answered her 200-yard breaststroke time of 2:16.05 from the morning with a 2:13.62 in the final to take second place.  Dunlap (2:19.73), Larsen (2:20.15), Randolph (2:21.24), Lee (2:21.39) and Levere (2:25.09) all put some points on the board for the Bulldogs from the bonus final.

Watch video of Liao in the 200-yard breaststroke final here.

Hyde defended her title from last year, winning the 200-yard butterfly with a time of 1:57.65.  Hyde was sitting in second place after the first 100 yards, but moved into first position with the fastest third 50 by 0.55 seconds and grew the lead with the fastest final 50 by 0.43 seconds.  Hyde's time of 1:57.65 is again faster than the NCAA B-cut but also faster than her winning time from last year in the event, 1:57.74.  Hyde's win put Yale back into third position ahead of Columbia, who had moved ahead of Yale after the 1650 free.  Racing in the consolation final West finished 16th overall with a time of 2:06.13.

Watch video of Hyde's win in the 200-yard butterfly here.

Rosenberg delivered a very exciting score in the three-meter diving final, finishing first with an even total of 340.00 points.  Rosenberg the only diver to put up more than 300 points, meaning she won by a margin of nearly 50 points to break the existing Ivy League record of 335.95 set in 2007.  Her score also breaks the 10-year-old Yale record of 319.05 by more than 20 points.  Rosenberg was Ivy League Champion on three meter her sophomore year as well, winning that year with a score of 291.60 points.

In the last race of the meet the Bulldogs owned the 400-yard freestyle relay.  Yale's squad of Forrester, Tsay, Hyde and Weaver clocked in at 3:20.21, faster than the NCAA B-cut of 3:24.67 as well as the Yale record of 3:20.59 set at Ivy's in 2010.  The second-fastest time in the event came from Columbia who had the lead after the first 200 yards.  Hyde then dove in for a 49.56 split – the fastest of all the swimmers in the event – to chip away at Columbia's lead to which Weaver finished the job, posting the fastest split of all the anchors in the field.  In the end Yale would beat Columbia by a margin of 1.52 seconds.

Last year Yale finished fifth at Ivy's with 860 points, citing only one win in Hyde's 200-yard butterfly swim.  This year the Bulldogs finish in third with 1075.5 points and with five wins: the 200-yard medley relay, 100-yard butterfly, 200-yard butterfly, three-meter diving and the 400-yard freestyle relay.

Report filed by Tom Lynam '13, Yale Sports Publicity

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