Women's Swimming and Diving Wins Eighth Consecutive NEWMAC Championship

Women's Swimming and Diving Wins Eighth Consecutive NEWMAC Championship

THE BASICS 

- Event: 2018 NEWMAC Championship

- Results: 1st of 10 teams - 1314 points - Final

- Location: Cambridge, Mass. (Zesiger Sports and Fitness Center Pool)

- The Lead: The MIT women's swimming and diving team won its eighth straight New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Championship this evening after the Engineers totaled 1314 points.

MIT sophomore Blake Zhou (Palo Alto, Calif.) was named as the NEWMAC Women's Diver of the Year, Wheaton freshman Lydia Decourte was named as the NEWMAC Rookie of the Year and Wheaton senior Jenna Hayden was named as the NEWMAC Swimmer of the Year.

MIT accumulated 1314 points which was 312 ahead of second place Wheaton College. Behind MIT and Wheaton was Springfield in third (795.5 points), WPI in fourth (721), Coast Guard in fifth (575.5), Wellesley in sixth (449), Smith in seventh (261), Mount Holyoke in eighth (242), Clark in ninth (230) and Babson in tenth (203).

HOW IT HAPPENED:

- Freshman Kailey Allen (Tacoma, Wash.) set a new meet record in the 200-fly and shaved nearly three seconds off her time during prelims this morning as she won the event in an NCAA "B" cut time of 2:00.81. The Engineers swept the top-3 spots in the 200-fly as behind Allen was classmate Hannah Mahaffey (Lawrenceville, Ga.) for NEWMAC Second Team All-Conference honors with an NCAA "B" cut of 2:03.99 and sophomore Kayla Holman (Menlo Park, Calif.) in third with an NCAA "B" time of 2:04.13. Freshman Nina Levine (Bedford, N.H.) won the "B" final with a time of 2:09.55, which was 4.42-seconds faster than this morning's swim.

- Zhou dethroned seven-time NEWMAC diving champion Maura Sticco-Ivins from Wellesley as she won the 1-meter board with an NCAA Division III Diving Regional qualifying score of 486.85 points. Zhou is the first student-athlete to defeat Sticco-Ivins at the NEWMAC Championship since 2015. The other three MIT divers also registered regional qualifying scores tonight, as freshman Deborah Wen (Honolulu, Hawaii) took third with 463.25 points, junior Dolly Payne (Palo Alto, Calif.) finished fifth with 447.60 points and classmate Morgan Matranga (Moraga, Calif.) took sixth with 436.65 points.

- Senior Jessica Chen (Rockville, Md.) and freshman Caroline Kenton (West Chester, Pa.) also claimed individual NEWMAC titles in their respective events. Chen clocked an NCAA "B" cut time of 2:18.75 in the 200-breast, while Kenton touched the wall first in the 200-back in 2:04.71. Behind Chen in the 200-breast was freshman Sarah Nicholas (Wilmette, Ill.) in third in 2:22.01 and classmate Danielle Fang (Hawthorne Woods, Ill.) in 14th in 2:31.53. Behind Kenton in the 200-back was classmate Ashley Pearson (Stafford, Va.) in second for All-Conference honors in a time of 2:05.13, sophomore Kathy Pan (Ann Arbor, Mich.) in fifth in 2:09.07 and junior Clare Wieland (Lake Forest, Ill.) in seventh in 2:09.35. 

- The Engineers had three student-athletes in the championship final of the 100-free as sophomore Lilia Staszel (Brighton, Mich.) touched the wall fourth in 52.44, classmate Priscilla Wu (Cincinnati, Ohio) clocked a time of 52.88 for sixth place and sophomore Delaney Burns (Scituate, Mass.) finished eighth in 53.12.

- Junior Addie Chambers (Seattle, Wash.) registered an NCAA "B" cut time of 17:21.03 for third place in the 1650-free and right behind her in fourth was senior Mary Thielking (Fishers, Ind.), who touched the wall in 17:21.10. Freshman Audrey Gaither (Ross, Calif.) was the third fastest Engineer in the 1650 as she finished 12th in a time of 18:33.22.

- The Engineers 400-free relay team comprised of Chen, Holman, Mahaffey and Staszel, finished second overall in the "A" final with an NCAA "B" cut time of 3:27.80 just behind the "A" team from Wheaton, which notched a time of 3:27.67. The quartet of Burns, Pan, Thielking and P. Wu won the "B" final in a combined time of 3:33.53.

PRELIM HIGHLIGHTS:

- Chen swam an NCAA "B" cut time in the 200-breast in 2:20.53, while Allen's swim of 2:03.01 in the 200-fly broke the meet record set back in 2010.

UP NEXT:

- Prior to the NCAA Division III Swimming and Diving National Championship in a few weeks, MIT's qualified divers will compete in the NCAA Division III Northeast-North Diving Regionals next weekend, March 2 and 3, at Middlebury College. Full details of the regional will be made available later this week.

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