The Yale women’s swimming and diving teams capped off the Ivy League Championships by fighting off five other Ancient Eight squads to take home bronze.

Though the Elis eclipsed the 1000-point threshold, its 1,139.5 points were ultimately insufficient to overcome conference rivals No. 22 Princeton and Harvard, who finished in first and second
place, respectively.

The Bulldogs began their fight for the title Wednesday at Brown. Strong performances by the relay teams kept Yale 20 points behind the Crimson, and just four points behind the Tigers.

The 200-yard medley quartet consisting of Jamie Yeh ’23, Jessica Whang ’23, Caitlin Tycz ’22 and Izzi Henig ’22 finished in third, touching in with a time of 1:39.13. Henig reprised her role in the 800-yard freestyle relay, helping Raime Jones ’22, Ashley Loomis ’22 and Lili Margitai ’20 finish more than a second ahead of the Dartmouth squad to clinch another third place finish with a time of 7:12.60.

On Thursday, the scoring margin between the Elis and the top two spots on the leaderboard widened to 155.5 points.

Top performers of the day included Loomis, who placed sixth in the 500-yard freestyle with a time of 4:47.80. Margitai and Cate Sawkins ’21 also finished in eighth and ninth overall in the 200-yard individual medley.

Diver Nikki Watters ’21 narrowly missed out on a top-three finish in the one-meter dive by a margin of 0.55 points. Her score of 272.35 was 10.45 points lower than her preliminary score earlier in the day, but was still enough for a fourth-place finish.

Henig was the Blue and White’s greatest point contributor of the day, taking fifth in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 22.60.

The second-to-last day of competition saw Yale continue its hold on the third spot with 117 more points than Penn.

The earlier bronze-winning 200-yard medley trio of Yeh, Whang and Tycz was supported by Ophelia Pilkinton ’23 as it competed in the longer-distance 400-yard medley relay. The team’s time of 3:40.34 was more than enough to secure the Bulldogs a third-place finish behind a Crimson and a Tiger squad.

Loomis’ time of 9:49.16 in the 1000-yard freestyle was not only a personal record, but also earned her a fifth-place finish. According to Loomis, she has been working on “building confidence in the longer distance swims.”

“I was extremely happy with my performances this weekend,” Loomis said. “This confidence came from a season of consistent training as well as the support throughout the meet from teammates, coaches, alumni and parents. I think that this weekend truly showed how our team can come together when faced with a challenge and compete at our best at the last session of a four-
day meet.”

Olivia Paoletti ’22 finished in sixth place in the 400-yard individual medley with a time of 4:19.66. Tycz matched Paoletti’s placement, touching in with a time of 53.93 in the 100-meter butterfly.

Whang, MaryKate Buckley ’22 and Cha O’Leary ’20 took the fourth-, fifth- and sixth-place spots in the 100-yard breaststroke finals, respectively. The 100-yard backstroke also saw a similar slew of Elis in the top eight, with Yeh and Sawkins finishing in fifth and seventh with respective times of 54.38 and 55.32.

On the final day of the Ivy League Championships, Yale retained its third-place standing through several strong individual swims.

Four swimmers delivered standout performances to place third in their respective events. Loomis’ grueling long-distance 1650-yard freestyle swim had her touch in at 16:22.28, and Henig’s time of 48.90 was only five milliseconds away from the top two in the 100-yard freestyle final. Sawkins, meanwhile, secured third by a single millisecond in the 200-yard backstroke with her time of 1:56.94, while O’Leary swam a 2:13.45 in the 200-yard breaststroke.

Diver Watters improved upon her fourth-place finish in the one-meter event to take home a silver in the three-meter dive with a score of 316.95.

“The best thing [at Ivies] was watching our incredible seniors finish their careers and swim their last races,” Jones said. “I heard one of them describe her last race ever as her ‘dream race’, and it was just really cool to see their careers end on such a high note and have the team support them throughout.”

The Elis’ last Ivy League title came in 2017.

 

Ryan Chiao | ryan.chiao@yale.edu