Women’s Swimming and Diving Class of 2016 Announced

Alexandra Forrester (bottom) and Michelle Huang (top). (photo by Tom Lynam '13, Yale Sports Publicity)
Alexandra Forrester (bottom) and Michelle Huang (top). (photo by Tom Lynam '13, Yale Sports Publicity)

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Yale women's swimming and diving team will turn it up to 11 this season as they welcome 11 new Bulldogs to the squad. 

Eight swimmers and three divers have been added to the roster, meaning the team is bringing in nearly three times the number of athletes that graduated last spring.  Last season the Bulldogs said goodbye to three swimmers and one diver, the latter being captain Rachel Rosenberg '12.  With one diver leaving and three more being added in this group of incoming freshmen, Chris Bergère's diving squad will double this year.  The role of captain, meanwhile, is back on the swimming side as senior Joan Weaver will look to lead the team to a successful season.

In addition to this new group of freshman athletes, the Bulldogs also have a new coaching staff this season.  Jim Henry was brought on to replace Cristina Teuscher as Yale's Robert J.H. Kiphuth Director of Swimming and Diving after coaching for six years at the University of Texas.  Joining him is Danielle Korman, who will serve as assistant coach at Yale following a four-year stint at Johns Hopkins.

"It is an honor to have been chosen as the women's swimming coach at Yale," said Robert J.H. Kiphuth Head Women's Coach Henry.  "August and September have been months of discovery and hospitality at Yale for the new coaching staff.  Coach Korman and I look to build upon the strong history and tradition of success in swimming and diving at Yale. We are excited about this team's positive energy and commitment to the program.  Coach Bergère and the divers will be a tremendous asset to the team throughout the year.  Our seniors have demonstrated in the month of September that they will lead, and the incoming freshmen bring a focus and work ethic that benefits the entire group. We are all fired up for the first official day of practice."

Of the eight swimmers in the Class of 2016, three competed at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials in Omaha, Neb., this past June.  Five of the 11 are high school All-Americans.  Here is a closer look at this year's freshman class:


Danielle DeNunzio


Hometown: Darien, Conn.

High School: Deerfield Academy

Before Yale: Dove on the varsity team all four years of high school… Team captain senior year… Holds the Deerfield record, Exeter 6-dive pool record, and the Suffield 6-dive and 11-dive records… Second at the 2012 NEPSSA Championships.

Personal: Member of Morse College.

Why I Chose Yale: "I loved the Yale community and the closeness of the swimming and diving team."


Eva Fabian

Distance Freestyle

Hometown: Keene, N.H.

High School: Oak Meadow High School

Before Yale: Won the 10K at the 2011 USA Swimming Open Water National Championships... 2010 5k Open Water World Champion... Earned a silver medal in the 10k open water event at the 2010 MOO Pan Pacific Championships... Placed 10th in the 25K at the 2009 FINA World Championships… Placed second in the 10K at the 2009 Open Water National Championships… Won the 5K at the 2009 Open Water National Championships… Finished fourth in the 10K at the 2009 Junior Pan Pacific Championships.

Personal: Member of Pierson College.


Callie Fosburgh

Mid-Distance Freestyle/IM

Hometown: Washington, D.C.

High School: Woodrow Wilson Senior High School

Before Yale: High School All-American in 200 free, 500 free, 200 IM… Captain of the team senior year… Swam for Machine Aquatics… Fourth place in 200 free, seventh place in 500 free at NCSA Junior Nationals.

Personal: Member of Timothy Dwight College.

Why I Chose Yale: "At Yale, I feel that there is a fantastic sense of community, without sacrificing any level of individualism. Every person is allowed to grow, and is encouraged to become the best that they can be, both in academics and life."


Samantha Garcia

Sprint Freestyle

Hometown: West Haven, Conn.

High School: West Haven High School

Before Yale: Southern Connecticut Conference All-Conference swimmer in the 100 freestyle in 2009 and 2010… Helped the team capture the 2010 Division II Southern Connecticut Conference Championship… Holds four school records in the 200 medley relay, 50 freestyle, the 200 freestyle relay and the 400 freestyle relay… Team captain during the 2011 season.

Personal: Member of Berkeley College... Plans to major in economics.

Why I Chose Yale: "Everyone on campus was welcoming, open, and friendly.  I felt like strangers were transformed into good friends within minutes.  That kind of excitement and happiness from the entire community was unbeatable, and so I fell in love with Yale."


Olivia Grinker


Hometown: Washington, D.C.

High School: Sidwell Friends

Before Yale: Four-time Independent School League (ISL) and Washington Metropolitan Private School Swim and Dive League (WMPSSDL) Champion… Four-time ISL All-League and WMPSSDL Diver of the Year… Placed third, fourth and fifth at METROS Swimming and Diving Championships… Honorable Mention, Washington Post Winter All-Met (2011)… Three-time SFS Award (MVP) and Coach's Award (2011) for Sidwell Friends Swim and Dive Team… Dove with Montgomery and Dominion Dive Clubs… Four-time Junior National and Age Group qualifier… Six-time Junior East Nationals qualifier… 10th place in 16-18 platform at U.S. Junior Nationals in 2011.

Personal: Member of Calhoun College… Daughter of Joyce Chung (psychiatrist at NIH) and Roy Richard Grinker (anthropology professor at George Washington)… Has one sister, Isabel.

Why I Chose Yale: "I chose Yale because I know that it will inspire me to grow and develop intellectually. I am excited to learn from my classmates and professors, and look forward to making lifelong friendships."


Emily Gudbranson

Sprint Freestyle/Breaststroke

Hometown: Cleveland Heights, Ohio

High School: Hathaway Brown School

Before Yale: Swam all four years of varsity high school swimming… Made it to top eight at states each year… Varsity captain junior and senior year… Holds two pool records and one varsity record… Two-time scholastic All-American… Member of the 2011-2012 All-American Interscholastic Academic Team.

Personal: Member of Trumbull College.

Why I Chose Yale: "For how well the team manages a great balance between swimming, academics, and just having fun."


Casey Lincoln

Distance Freestyle

Hometown: Palo Alto, Calif.

High School: Henry M. Gunn High School

Before Yale: Lettered four years in both swimming and water polo... All-American in the 500 free, 200 free relay, and 400 free relay... Scholastic All-American... School record holder in the 500 free... National Merit finalist... Swam for Palo Alto Stanford Aquatics.

Personal: Member of Saybrook College... Daughter of Todd and Suzie Lincoln... Older sister, Alex, swims at Pomona College... Younger brother, Michael, swims for Palo Alto Stanford Aquatics.

Why I Chose Yale: "Right away I knew I wanted to come to Yale. In addition to an unparalleled education, Yale offers the chance to compete at a high athletic level while surrounded by a team of brilliant, inquisitive student-athletes."


Kasey Mann


Hometown: Lancaster, Pa.

High School: Manheim Township High School

Before Yale: Swam all four years of high school and was a state finalist in the butterfly each year… High school All-American in 100 fly and 200 medley relay… Swam at junior nationals... Swam for the Lancaster Aquatic Club… USA Swimming Scholar-Athlete.

Personal: Member of Branford College… Plans to major in economics.

Why I Chose Yale: "At Yale the students seem genuinely happy and passionate about their school. The swim team could not have been more welcoming and Yale is the place where I decided I wanted to spend the next four years of my life."


Kelly Sherman


Hometown: Littleton, Mass.

High School: Littleton High School

Before Yale: Competed for Boston Area Dive Team, coached by Joe Chirico and Jim Brainerd… Competed in USA and AAU Nationals, placing second on one meter at AAU Nationals in 2012… Holds the Littleton team record for 6 and 11 dives… High school All-American in 2009… Voted MVP of the Littleton Swimming and Diving Team in 2009, 2010 and 2011… Named league MVP in 2012.

Personal: Member of Trumbull College… Plans on majoring in environmental studies.

Why I Chose Yale: "I chose Yale because of the strong academics and strong dive program and the welcoming feel Yale exuded."


Emma Smith


Hometown: Saint Charles, Ill.

High School: Saint Charles East H.S.

Before Yale: Sixth place in the 200 IM and 400 IM and sixth place as part of 800 free relay at 2012 NCSA Junior Nationals… 2012 Olympic Trials qualifier… 2012 IHSA State Champion in 200 IM… High School … Scholastic All-American… Valedictorian of high school graduating class.

Personal: Member of Ezra Stiles College… Interested in studying the life sciences and medicine… Enjoys traveling, sailing, music and cool art projects.

Why I Chose Yale: "I loved the balance of academics, swimming, and social life and the team was really nice and welcoming when I came on my recruiting trip."


Ali Stephens-Pickeral


Hometown: Danville, Va.

High School: George Washington High School

Before Yale: Swam competitively for 12 years... Swam all four years of high school... Placed first at the Northwest Regional Championships and second at State finals... Holds four school records... All-American Swimmer in the 100 breaststroke... Won the Southeastern Zone Championships in the 100 and 200 Breaststroke... Qualified for Junior Nationals and Nationals for the last three years... Competed at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials.

Personal: Member of the Timothy Dwight College... Plans to major in Global Affairs... Daughter of Anne Stephens and Andy Pickeral.

Why I Chose Yale: "I just knew the moment I stepped on campus that this was where I wanted to spend the next four years. Everything about Yale is incredible, the residential colleges, the wide array of classes offered, the amazing food, the likeness to Hogwarts, the closeness of the students...Plus the amazing opportunities and support system I will be offered both athletically and academically cannot be matched at any other university!"

Report filed by Tom Lynam '13, Yale Sports Publicity