February 26, 2004

Lady Swimmers Head to Ivies

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The women’s swimming and diving team posted a 3-8 overall record this season, with all three of its wins coming out of conference. It was the first time in over two decades that the Red had finished a season with a winless record in the Ivy League, as the Red fell to all seven members of the Ancient Eight. But, despite the disappointing campaign, the Red will have an opportunity to right a season of failure. This weekend, all of the regular season statistics will be thrown aside as the Red visits Harvard for the Ivy League Championships.

“We are all really psyched about the Ivy’s,” said senior co-captain Jayme Majek.

Not only will the Red be trying to turn around its season but also its recent lack of success at the Ivy’s. Over the past six years, the Red’s highest finish has been sixth in 2000, with the team occupying the cellar last year.

The competition has not gotten any easier. Princeton will head into the event holding four straight Ivy League titles, as well as four straight first place finishes at the championships. The Tigers will be joined by Harvard, Brown, Yale, Columbia, Penn, and Dartmouth.

Over the past few weeks, the Red has been preparing both in and out of the pool. After a season of intense training, the team has entered a taper period of late, where the practices have become gradually lighter in hopes of keeping the team fresh for the championships.

But although the practices have been decreasing in intensity, the swimmers had to fight very hard just to make the squad for the Ivy’s. Head coach John Holohan implemented performance standards for each swimmer, in order to measure individual improvement. He did not necessarily pick his best swimmers in terms of times.

However, many of the Red competitors will be the swimmers that have put together the best seasons. The team will feature Majek, sophomore Jessica Brookman, and sophomore diver Kristen Rayhack. Brookman will try to improve upon her fourth place finish in the 100-yard fly at last year’s Ivy’s.

Although the Red eagerly awaits the meet, Holohan views it as a stepping-stone for future success. Holohan is about to finish up only his first year with the Red and views this season as part of the rebuilding process. Although he is striving for a good finish at the Ivy’s, his program is still early in its development.

But for senior co-captains Majek and Aliza Ginsburg, this is it. Before the February 14 meet against Buffalo, Ginsburg acknowledged that the Ivy’s would occupy much of the team’s focus.

“We are going to try to win [against Buffalo], but the next couple of weeks, including this meet, will continue our preparation for the Ivy’s.”

Hopefully for the Red, all of that preparation will pay off and a league championship will erase the memories of such a lackluster season.


Archived article by Bryan Pepper