November 8, 2013

Bulldogs Open Season Against SCSU

 

NEW HAVEN, Conn. -- This Friday, the Yale women's swimming and diving team opens the 2013-14 season with its first official meet.  The Bulldogs will face New Haven rival Southern Connecticut State University at home, in the Kiphuth Exhibition Pool.

This will mark the first official competition for this year's exciting freshman class.  Michelle Chintanaphol, Elizabeth Fosburgh, MacKenzie Franklin, Sydney Hirschi, Isla Hutchinson-Maddox, Olivia Jameson, Anna Wujciak and Kina Zhou will make their debuts in various swimming events while Olivia Loucks and Lilybet MacRae will take their first official dives for the Bulldogs.  

Yale faced SCSU in a preseason scrimmage before last season and defeated the Owls handily, prevailing 222-77.  Yale took first in 14 of 16 events last season, with the current sophomore class accounting for four of those wins.  The medley relay team of then-freshmen Casey Lincoln, Ali Stephens-Pickeral, Kasey Mann and Emily Gudbranson took first in the 200-yard medley relay and Stephens-Pickeral also picked up a victory in the 100-yard breaststroke.  Current sophomore Eva Fabian delivered wins in both the 1000-yard freestyle and the 200-yard butterfly.  This year's class of freshmen hopes to enjoy a similarly successful debut on Friday.

Though the SCSU dual will be the first official meet of the season, this year's team has already tasted competition in two scrimmages.  For the first meet, the Bulldogs traveled up to Storrs to face the Connecticut Huskies.  It was an impressive performance by the Bulldogs, who displayed both top-end talent and serious depth.  Yale went 1-2-3 in three different events, with Fabian, sophomore Casey Lincoln and senior Courtney Randolph topping the results in the 1000-yard freestyle, Fabian, Hutchinson-Maddox and Lincoln pacing the field in the 500-yard freestyle and sophomore Emma Smith, Chintanaphol and Randolph leading the pack in the 400-yard IM.

The UConn meet saw a total of seven wins by Yale's freshmen.  Wujciak touched first in the 200-yard freestyle, while Zhou and Franklin went 1-2 in the 100-yard free.  Hirschi finished first in both the 100- and 200-yard butterfly.  Zhou finished first in the 200-yard breaststroke.  The relay team of Zhou, Jameson, Franklin and Wujciak was victorious in the 400-yard freestyle relay.  On the diving side of things, MacRae pulled out a victory in the 3-meter dive.

Following their excellent performance against the Huskies, the Bulldogs traveled to Annapolis to take on Navy and the 11th ranked University of Virginia.  Unlike typical meets, this scrimmage was contested on a 25-meter short course, offering an interesting change of pace. Though the national powerhouse Cavaliers dominated many events, there were definite bright spots for the Bulldogs.  Zhou scored a second-place finish in the 100-meter freestyle and a third in the 50-meter free.  Hutchinson-Maddox and Hirschi went 2-3 in the 200-meter butterfly.  The freshman relay team of Zhou, Franklin, Jameson and Wujciak finished an impressive third in the 400-meter freestyle relay, finishing only 1.77 seconds behind UVA's top relay team.

Friday's meet against SCSU will take place in the Kiphuth Exhibition Pool inside Payne Whitney Gymnasium.  Competition begins at 3:00 P.M.

For a complete season preview, click here.

Report filed by Lyon Van Voorhis '15, Yale Sports Publicity