W. SWIMMING | Huskies no match for Elis in final home meet

In head coach Frank Keefe’s final home meet of his storied career, both the men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams dominated UConn on their way to victories. At right, Keefe is honored before the start of the competition.
In head coach Frank Keefe’s final home meet of his storied career, both the men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams dominated UConn on their way to victories. At right, Keefe is honored before the start of the competition. Photo by Nicholas Lombardo.

The women’s swimming and diving team finished an impressive regular season Saturday with a commanding 202–98 win over UConn. Perhaps more notably, though, it was the final home meet for Frank Keefe, after 32 years as Robert J.J. Kiphuth Director of Swimming.

“[Saturday] was the best possible way to end the dual meet season,” Hayes Hyde ’12 said. “We were motivated to win, not only because UConn is a tough team, but also because of all the emotion — the alumni, the people, the ceremony. It was exciting, almost like a performance.”

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Motivated to send Keefe off with a win, the Bulldogs (8–3) started strong and did not lose the momentum. In the first event of the day, the 200-yard medley relay, the team of Emily Dominski ’12, Susan Kim ’10, Alex Forrester ’13 and Cynthia Tsay ’13 defeated the second place Huskies squad by 3.72 seconds, with a time of 1:44.50.

Seniors Kim and captain Andrea Clifford ’10 would go on to have impressive swims in their final home meet at Yale. Kim won both the 100- and 200-yard breaststroke — breaking two pool records. She swam a 1:02.77 in the 100-yard and 2:14.23 in the 200-yard event. IM, tallying three individual wins for the days. Clifford took third in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 1:00.02.

The underclassmen also had their share of success. Abigail Nunn ’12 placed third in the 1,000-yard freestyle, while Joan Weaver ’13, Ileana Lucos ’11 and Kristin Darwin ’11 swept the first three spots, respectively, in the 200-yard freestyle. This was followed by a 1-2 finish from Dominski (57.30) and Albrecht (58.29) in the 100-yard backstroke. Forrester (1:57.07) and Monica Tung ’13 (2:05.24) then gave Yale another 1-2 in the 200-yard butterfly. Forrester set a new Yale record in the event with her time.

The Elis continued their dominance with a 1-2 finish from Tsay (23.98) and Kao (24.82) in the 50-yard freestyle and a sweep in the 100-yard freestyle from Forrester (50.09), Tsay (52.33) and Hyde (53.51). Forrester’s time was good for a new pool record.

Albrecht (200-yard backstroke) and Weaver (500-yard freestyle) were both able to produce wins, while Tung and Lucos went 1-2 in the 100-yard butterfly. The Bulldogs finished the meet with a perfect 1-2-3 finish in the 400-yard freestyle relay.

The win gives the team a final record of 8-3 for the dual meet season. Coach Keefe shared his thoughts on the season and the final meet at the Kiputh Exhibition pool.

“It was great to see the seniors do so well,” he said in a press release. “But the hardest thing is leaving kids behind. There’s a strong bond between coaches and athletes, and that’s why coaches don’t leave. I hate to leave the kids now, but after 31 years and 491 meets you just get worn out.”

The Bulldogs next compete at the Ivy League Championships starting Feb. 24 at Harvard.

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