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No. 22 Women’s Swimming and Diving Finishes Second at Ivy Meet

(photo credit The Ivy League/Mark Wyville)

PRINCETON, N.J. – The Harvard women's swimming and diving team finished in second place, 100.5 points behind Princeton, at the Ivy Championship meet held March 1-3 at DeNunzio Pool. The Crimson had seven top-five finishes on the last day of the meet, but could not overcome a 33.5-point deficit and lost to the Tigers, 1474.5-1374.

Kendall Crawford was Harvard's lone winner on the night, as she took the 200-yard backstroke in 1:55.84.The Crimson also had two or more swimmers in the 'A' final of four races.

Harvard started the night with Marlee Ehrlich and Sherry Liu finishing fourth and seventh in the 1,650 freestyle. Ehrlich touched the wall in 16:32.83, 17 seconds faster than the Crimson's previous best time of the year, and Liu was in at 16:39.62.

Next, three Harvard swimmers placed in the 'A' final of the 200 back, one of the Crimson's best events throughout the season. Crawford won, Danielle Lee was in fourth at 1:57.64 and Caroline Weaver stopped the clock at 1:58.78 for eighth.

Sara Li was edged in the 100 free, but came in second with a 49.20. The junior set a new program record in the process.

Mackenzie Luick (2:16.14) and Stephanie Ferrell (2:16.61) went for sixth and eighth place in the 200 breaststroke, the next event, and Courtney Otto and Ana Anaya grabbed second and sixth in the 200 fly. Otto swam the race in 1:57.80, while Anaya came up with a 2:00.20 mark.

The Crimson finished with fourth-place showings in the last two events, the three-meter diving competition and the 400 freestyle relay. Teagan Lehrmann scored 284.5 and was 22.2 points off first-place finishing Katy Feng of Dartmouth. Harvard culminated the meet with Lee, Crawford, Faith Martin and Deirdre Clute combining for a 3:22.84 time in the 400 free relay. The group was outpaced by Yale's 3:18.44, a new meet record.

Harvard and Princeton have now gone 1-2 in the Ivy meet for 11 straight years.

The Crimson also sent members of the squad to the ECAC meet at Harvard's Blodgett Pool. For results from that meet, click here.

Swimmer of the Meet: Katie Meili, Columbia (Sr. - Colleyville, Texas)*
Career High Point Swimmer
: Katie Meili, Columbia (Sr. - Colleyville, Texas)
High Point Diver of the Meet: Paige Meneses, Yale (Sr. - St. Louis, Mo.)
Ron Keenhold Career High Point Diver: Katy Feng, Dartmouth (Jr. - Westford, Mass.)
* - as voted by the League's eight head coaches

Team Standings
1. Princeton, 1,474.5
2. Harvard, 1,374
3. Columbia, 1,132
4. Yale, 1,049
5. Dartmouth, 856
6. Penn, 715
7. Brown, 678.5
8. Cornell, 576

Friday
The Harvard women's swimming and diving team moved to within 33.5 points of first-place Princeton, after trailing by 61.5 coming into the day, during the second day of the Ivy Championship Meet Friday night. The Crimson benefited from nine top-five finishes, as the meet concluded eight more events. The Tigers and Harvard have gone 1-2 in the Ivy meet for 10 straight years and the pair is 124 points ahead of the rest of the conference so far.

Kendall Crawford, Mackenzie Luick, Ana Anaya and Sara Li won the 200 medley relay, the first event of the night session after morning prelims, and Li also took home the Ivy championship in the 200 freestyle to highlight the day.

Harvard's group of medley winners combined for a 1:39.48 time, edging second-place Columbia by 0.04 seconds. It was Harvard's first win in the event since 2007.  

Marlee Ehrlich and Sherry Liu kicked off the individual events by going for second and fourth in the 1,000 freestyle, respectively. Ehrlich swam the length in 9:51.38, while Liu touched the wall at 9:54.93, to produce one of the best races of the day for Harvard.

Courtney Otto barely missed defending her 400 IM title in the next race, as Columbia junior Alena Kluge slipped past Otto in the last 25 meters and won by 0.02 seconds. Otto (4:11.91) and Kluge (4:11.89) were nearly three seconds in front of the rest of the field that featured Harvard's Faith Martin finishing in eighth (4:23.82).

Ana Anaya was eighth in the 100 butterfly at 55.91, before Li swam her best 200 free of the year. The junior covered 200 meters in 1:46.48, just 0.07 off of Kate Mills' program record set in 2009, to earn the Ivy crown. Penn's Shelby Fortin, the two-time defending champion in the event, was 0.19 seconds off of Li.

Swimmers from Columbia and Princeton set new meet records in the next two races with Harvard earning two third-place medals, a fourth and a seventh in the 100 breaststroke and 100 back. Katie Meili of Columbia paced the 100 breaststroke with a 58.44, ahead of Harvard's Luick (1:02.33), who set a new personal record, in third and Stephanie Ferrell in seventh (1:03.17). Princeton's Lisa Boyce won the 100 backstroke, in 52.93, while Crimson freshmen Crawford (53.78) and Danielle Lee (54.59) were not far behind.

The night concluded with a showdown between the two top teams in the 800 free relay. Princeton claimed the top spot, turning in a 7:12.64, and Harvard's Li, Lee, Otto and Liu were in second, stopping the clock at 7:14.27.

The meet ends tomorrow with seven more Ivy titles to be had. Final swims begin at 6 p.m. with all of the action being streamed for free live on IvyLeagueSports.com


Thursday

The No. 22 Harvard women's swimming and diving team, which went 7-0 against Ancient Eight opponents in dual meets this year, sits in second place of the Ivy Championship Meet after the first day of competition. The Crimson has claimed 412 points thus far, but Princeton sits in first with 473.5. Six of the 22 championship events were concluded tonight in the first of three days of action.

Senior diver Brittany Powell won the one-meter diving event, while the Crimson earned four other top-five finishes and junior Sara Li set a new Harvard 50 free record Thursday night.

Freshman Sherry Liu was the first Harvard swimmer to earn a top-five spot with a 4:47.53 in the 500-yard freestyle. Classmate Margaret Ramsey also fared well in the event and set a new personal best in the process, as she won the 'B' final in a time of 4:49.93.

Next, freshman Kendall Crawford and sophomore Courtney Otto went for fifth and seventh, respectively, in the only swimming final of that night that featured a pair of Crimson, the 200 IM. Crawford touched the wall in 2:00.58 and Otto came in at 2:01.45. Both Harvard swimmers, and the rest of the field, were outpaced by Columbia's Katie Meili, who broke her own meet record and won her third straight 200 IM Ivy title by cruising to a 1:55.09 mark.

Junior Sara Li was third in the 50-yard freestyle by clocking in at the new program record of 22.46. Li eclipsed her own mark of 22.52, set in Harvard's last outing at HYP, before making way for Brittany Powell on the one-meter boards.

Powell had qualified in second, behind Columbia's Kristin Hehir, in the morning session, but came out with easily the best dive of the night in the final. She scored a 290.45 to beat Princeton's Rachel Zambrowicz by more than 20 points and give Harvard its first Ivy champion of the weekend. Powell became the first Crimson to win the event since Sam Papadakis in 2008. The Crimson's Cassandra Corneau, a freshman, also competed in the 'A' final and posted a 253.60 to come in seventh.

Crawford, Mackenzie Luick, Ana Anaya and Li closed out the night by earning third place in the 400 medley relay. The Crimson came in at 3:38.21, 1.43 seconds behind Columbia's group.

Each night session of this weekend's Ivy League meet will be streamed live for free. To go to the league's streaming page, click here, or visit the championship central page.