Penn Men and Women Split with UCONN

The University of Pennsylvania men and women traveled to Storrs, CT to take on University of Connecticut at the Wolff-Zackin Natatorium on Saturday, November 9. The Quaker men fell to the Huskies while the Penn women defeated their hosts. Click here for complete results.

Penn’s women took an early lead by winning the 200 medley relay. Lauryn Brown, Haley Wickham, Rochelle Dong and Shelby Fortin swam a solid 1:45.16, two seconds ahead of their UConn hosts Christine Pederson, Tara O’Prey, Sophie Nothnagle and Chinyere Pigot.

Penn increased their lead with 1-2-3 sweeps of the next two events. In the 1000, Annie McCotter (10:29.41), Kristi Edleson and Megan Alexander all finished ahead of the first Lady Husky, Hannah Perna. The 200 free saw three Quakers (Fortin, 1:52.88, Sydney Stinner and Morgan Scott) add 16 points to the tally.

The Huskies’ Pederson overcame a .4 deficit after the first 50 to win the 100 back in 56.73. Two Quakers scored second and third: Lauren Church and Brown.

Penn’s Wickham was first to the wall in a close 100 breast. Her 1:07.28 was a half second ahead of UConn’s O’Prey, while her teammate Laura Hyland finished third.

UConn’s Nothnagle (2:06.45) and Holly Gallagher went 1-2 in the 200 fly. Both overtook Penn’s Madeleine Jardeleza who had led at the 100.

In the 50 free, the Huskies’ Pigot (23.99) touched out Quakers Irene Katopodis and Christina Hurley for the win.

UConn narrowed the Penn lead in the 3-meter diving by taking the top three spots with Taryn Urbanus (286.95), Ali Butera, and Michelle Kalupski.

Penn Quaker senior Shelby Fortin (courtesy of Penn Athletics)

Penn Quaker senior Shelby Fortin (courtesy of Penn Athletics)

Penn freshman Dong held off UConn’s Pigot to win the 100 free 51.44 to 51.63. Quaker teammate Emma Siewert was third.

Fortin of Penn took her second event of the day with the 200 back. She held off a strong last-50 charge from the Huskies’ Pederson to win 2:03.06 to 2:03.16.

In the 200 breast it was UConn’s Hyland out front. She avenged her third-place finish in the 100 with a 2:24.02 victory, ahead of Quaker teammates Ellie Grimes and Lia Lombardi.

The Quaker distance freestylers took the 500 with a 1-2-3 finish led by Stinner (5:04.76). Edleson and McCotter were second and third.

Dong got her second victory with a resounding win in the 100 fly. Her 56.42 was 2.3 seconds faster than Gallagher of UConn who came from behind to touch out Penn’s Taylor Sneed for second.

In the 400 IM Quaker teammates Grimes (4:32.38) and Katherine Ashenfelter used their strong breast/free legs to overtake UConn’s Tessa Pena, who had the fastest first half.

UConn again took the top three places in the diving. This time the order was Butera (255.67), Urbanus and Kalupski on the 1-meter board.

The women’s meet ended with a Penn victory in the 200 free relay from Dong, Fortin, Brown and Katopodis (1:35.76). The Huskies’ Jordan Drake, O’Prey, Pederson and Pigot finished second.

Final score: University of Pennsylvania 172.5 – University of Connecticut 127.5

The men’s meet was more of a nail-biter. It opened with a narrow victory for Penn in the 200 medley relay. Philip Hu, Kyle Yu, Rhoads Worster, and Alex Porter (1:32.03) combined to hold off UConn’s Jeff Magin, Lachezar Shumkov, Ryan Walsh and Felix Samuels despite a 19.7 anchor from Samuels.

Michael Lennon (9:25.64) of UConn won the 1000 free ahead of Penn’s Chris Swanson and Wes Thomas.

Those results were reversed in the 200 free, with Quaker freshman Kevin Su (1:42.26) taking first and Huskies Jerry Burton and Sean Battle going second and third.

Penn’s Worster won the first of two in the 100 back, going 50.50. Magin of UConn touched out Hu of Penn by .08 for second.

Husky Shumkov was the 100 breast winner thanks to a strong second half. In fourth place at the 50 he ended up just .09 in front of Yu and .4 ahead of Cole Hurwitz, both of Penn.

UConn men went 1-2 in the 200 fly with Christopher Girg (1:51.46) and Walsh. Sam Haley of Penn was third. Only down by 8 points after the fly, this was the closest UConn had been to Penn since the 1000.

Penn’s Eric Schultz won the 50 free by .06 in 21.02, helping to increase Penn’s lead over the Huskies. UConn’s Samuels was second; Penn’s Porter, third.

The Quakers widened their advantage to 22 points after the 1-meter diving with a first and a third in Jack Stein (267.83) and Will Hartje. UConn’s Tony Cortright was second.

From then on Connecticut began to chip away at Penn’s lead. The Huskies’ Samuels (46.05) took first in the 100 free; Dillon McHugh and Schultz, both of Penn, were second and third.

They further narrowed the margin with a 1-2 finish in the 200 back. Sawyer Franz (1:51.28) and Magin both touched before third-place Brian Foley of Penn.

UConn’s Shumkov won his second event of the day going 2:03.66 in the 200 breast. Penn’s Hurwitz and Yu were second and third, respectively.

Girg of UConn made it two for two with a win in the 500. His 4:33.91 put him four seconds in front of teammate Lennon and eight ahead of Penn’s Swanson. At the end of the 500 the Huskies led for the first time in the meet, by a mere two points.

Penn took it back in the next event, though. The 100 fly was their strongest finish, going 1-2-4 with Worster (49.57), Porter and Michael Wen. UConn’s Asher Garcia was third.

Franz of UConn came up with his second win in the 400 IM going 4:02.27. Penn’s Brendan Crystal and Grant Proctor followed.

Cortright turned the tables on the Penn divers, winning the 3-meter event by 3 points with 281.70. Stein and Hartje went 2-3. And with that, Penn’s lead was now back down to only three. Everything would be decided by the relay.

The UConn foursome of James Donlevy, Keith Piper, Battle and Samuels (1:22.92) got their combined hands to the wall .16 faster than Penn’s Porter, Schultz, McHugh, and Worster, and the Huskies walked away with the narrow victory. Final score Connecticut 153 – Penn 147.


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About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swim/swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

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