W. Swimming Takes Third at Ivy Championship Meet

Matthew R. Lincoln

Whitney Henderson competes in the 400 yard IM.

The Harvard women’s swimming and diving team wrapped up its season with a third place finish at the Ivy League Championships on Saturday.

The Crimson (5-3, 4-3 Ivy) tallied 655 points, behind this year’s champion, No. 25 Princeton (706), and runner-up, Brown (691). Harvard swimmers broke school records seven times over the course of the weekend and bettered last year’s fourth place finish at the Ivy championship meet.

An array of standout Crimson performances by both veterans and newcomers highlighted the final two days of competition. Junior sprinter Anna Fraser dominated the competition on Friday night with a victory in the 100-yard butterfly. Fraser touched the wall in 55:49, a personal best and a new school record.

“I felt smooth and strong in warm-ups, and it all came together for my race,” Fraser said. “I was really happy with my morning swim and I was excited to have started on Thursday with two amazing relays.”

Fraser swam on the Crimson’s two record-breaking relays on Thursday evening and added a 15th place finish in the 100 yard back later Friday night and a fourth place finish in the 200 yard butterfly on Saturday.

Fraser was one of four Harvard flyers in the 200 final. Freshman Whitney Henderson, sophomore Kate Nadeau and freshman Molly Brethauer were third, sixth and seventh respectively.


Women's Swimming

Women's Swimming

Brethauer and junior Jesse Walter comprised a tag team that rocked Saturday’s preliminary heats in the 200-yard backstroke, altering three Harvard records in the process.

Out of lane seven in heat two of the prelims, Brethauer dropped more than six seconds off of her season best time and broke the team record, as she post the top time so far that morning, 2:02.37.

Only two heats later, Walter, also in lane seven, tied Brethauer’s varsity record and also the top time of the morning. In the finals, Brethauer dropped two more seconds to win the event in another school record and personal best time of 2:00.54. Walter was second in 2:02.24 and freshman Emily Stapleton was seventh.

“We approached the meet hoping to swim fast and expecting to have fun,” Brethauer said. “I did not expect to make my senior national cut, break the school record, and win the event. I think that not expecting it made the victory even better.”

Freshman freestyler Molly Ward was similarly dominant as she powered her way through her third night of championship competition. Ward battled the competition in the 100-yard freestyle and finished fourth, in a personal best time and new varsity record of 51.11. Teammate and senior co-captain Janna McDougall was sixth.

“I was really excited about competing at my first Ivy Champs and with the momentum of the team I expected to swim personal best times,” Ward said. “I was thrilled when I realized I had also set a new school record.”

McDougall’s 100 free and anchor leg on the 400 free relay were her final events of the meet and also of her swimming career.

“I had fun and swam fast and am so glad to be leaving this team at the best it has been in four years,” McDougall said.

McDougall will leave Harvard as one of the Crimson’s most successful athletes from the past four Ivy Championships and with three team records.

Ward and McDougall teamed up with Anna Fraser and junior Jane Humphries in the meet’s final event, the 400 free relay, finishing second to Brown. Swimming in her third Ivy Champs, Humphries provided a boost to the Crimson with a fourth-place finish in the 400 individual medley and eigth in the 200 yard breaststroke.

On the boards, the divers came up big on the 3-meter event. Renee Paradise was seventh with 434.75 points and Anne Osmun was eigth with a score of 397.05. Harvard’s Coral Day-Davis was 15th.

Senior co-captain Caitee Lee sums up the weekend and the season as a


“This meet was the most fun I have ever had at a meet,” Lee said. “Every time a record was broken, everyone felt like they had just broken a record themselves. It speaks to the great things this team is going to do in the years to come.”