Harvard is off to a 2-0 start with wins over Dartmouth and Cornell (photo Harvard Athletic Communications).
ITHACA, N.Y. – The Harvard women's swimming and diving team kicked off the 2012-13 campaign in familiar fashion with wins over Cornell and Dartmouth in Ithaca, N.Y. The Crimson won 10 of the 14 swimming events to cruise to a 186-109 victory over the Big Red and a 196-99 rout of the Big Green.
Harvard, which pushed its Ivy League win streak to nine, has topped Cornell 28 straight times and has beaten Dartmouth on 32 consecutive occasions.
Harvard set eight pool records at Cornell's Teagle Hall Pool, while also setting one new team mark. Courtney Otto and Sara Li were both a part of two pool records and Kendall Crawford set Harvard and Teagle Hall marks with a time of 55.04 in the 100-yard backstroke. Otto swam a 1:51.70 in the 200 free and Li finished the first leg of the pool-record setting 400-meter freestyle relay in 50.98 to set a new 100-meter mark for the pool. Li and Otto combined with Connie Hsu and Deirdre Clute to finish the 400-meter freestyle in 3:28.96 to tie Dartmouth's previous mark.
Other record-setting performers included Sherry Liu, Kelsey Hojan-Clark, Danielle Lee and Ana Anaya. Liu and Hojan-Clark topped the field in a pair of freestyle races, the 1,000 and 500, respectively. Liu, a freshman, swam the 1,000-yard race in 10:09.40, while the sophomore Hojan-Clark finished 500 yards in 4:58.54. Lee, another freshman, easily won the 200-yard backstroke with a 1:58.61 mark, seven seconds ahead of her nearest competitor, and Anaya paced the 200-yard butterfly in 2:01.97.
The Crimson also received four wins other than the record-setting performers. Crawford, Mackenzie Luick, Anaya and Lee (1:45.25) nipped teammates Caroline Weaver, Li, Otto and Faith Martin (1:47.43) in the 200-yard medley relay for a one-two Harvard finish. Harvard narrowly missed another pool record, by .03 seconds, with its 200 medley victory.
Harvard finished in the top two in the 200-yard breaststroke, the 100-yard butterfly and 100-yard backstroke. Sophomore Stephanie Ferrell claimed the 200 breaststroke in 2:21.14, ahead of her classmate Courtney Otto's 2:21.31. Li, Hsu and Weaver went 1-2-3 in the 100-yard butterfly and Weaver also finished second in the 100 back behind Crawford's record swim.
Luick turned in a 1:05.10 clip in the 100 breaststroke for another Harvard win.
Brittany Powell highlighted Crimson divers with a win in the 1-meter event and a fourth-place showing on the 3-meter board. Powell scored a 245.90 on the 1-meter to edge Harvard teammate Amanda Largent's 240.70. Teagan Lehrmann scored 239.80 on the 3-meter to earn second place and the Crimson's best finish, ahead of Powell's 234.40.
Harvard is back in the pool Friday at Blodgett Pool against Columbia. The dual is slated for a 3 p.m. start.