Two thousand miles away--in a sparkling natatorium twice the size of Harvard's Blodgett Pool--five Crimson aquawomen fought their way to their first national points in three years in the second day of the AIAW Swimming Championships in Austin, Texas.
The University of Texas, which boasts competitors like two-time Olympian Jill Sterkel, who set a new American record in the 50-yd. butterfly, has jumped to a commanding lead and looks uncontested for the laurels again.
Sophomore sensation Debbie Zimic was the brightest star in the Crimson's day, splashing her way to 11th place in the 400-yard Individual Medley. Zimic's time of 4:31.4 is a personal best, as well as a new Harvard record.
Freshman diving phenom Jennifer Goldberg, the only member of the four-member corps to qualify for the trip, chalked up enough points to finish 20th in the one-meter competition.
Diving spectacularly well until the second round of eliminations, Goldberg's poorly-executed--and very difficult--1 1/2 reverse pike knocked her out of the final rounds.
The only other entry in yesterday's events was the 800-yard free-style relay of Zimic, freshman Anita Rival, sophomore Jones Floyd and junior transfer from West Point, Shelby Calvert. Despite a very strong third leg from Floyd and a powerful finish by Calvert, the Crimson quarter finished 17th--just .2 seconds away from the finals.
"It's a tough most, especially for schools that don't recruit," head Coach Vicki Hays said last night. "We are still pretty happy, though, because last year we didn't send anybody to the Nationals and this year we sent five."
Harvard's final entry in the meet will be today when Calvert races in the 200-yard backstroke. Her season best of 2:09 should put her in the top sixteen finishers, but a recent cold could harm her chances of placing well.
"The whole team will be out there rooting for her, and we'll all be looking for her to do well," Hays said.
Princeton and Brown are the only other Ivy League schools that are doing better than Harvard. Princeton's Betty Limb finished second in the 200-yard freestyle, and Brown sophomore Elaine Palmer won the 100-yard backstroke. Palmer is a Cambridge product of Harvard swim Coach Joe Bernal's Gator team.