Penn Women Beat Columbia in Ivy Season Opener at Home

The Columbia women’s team, whose undefeated 2013-14 season led to its first-ever Ivy League Dual Meet title, traveled to Sheerr Pool on Friday for a dual meet against the host Penn Quakers. The Quaker women were ready for the Lions; they won all the individual events and both relays and racked up a final score of 215 to 85.

Penn’s Lauryn Brown (25.75), Haley Wickham (29.19), Rochelle Dong (24.34), and Kimberly Phan (23.45) began with a 1:42.73 to 1:43.05 win in the medley relay over Gabrielle Tocack (26.54), Jennifer Shahar (28.51), Christina Ray (24.45), and Mikaila Gaffey (23.55).

A harbinger of things to come, Penn freshman Carolyn Yang swam a monster final 50 in the 1000 and out-touched Columbia’s Mallory McKeon 10:12.13 to 10:12.25. Yang also won the 500 by a nose, but this time it was teammate Megan Dollard in second (4:57.71) and McKeon in third (5:02.26).

Yang’s classmates Virginia Burns (1:49.75) and Dollard (1:50.16) went 1-2 in the 200 free ahead of Columbia freshman Cristi Frias (1:53.17).

Quaker Dong won the first of her two events with a 54.77 in the 100 back over Toback (55.84). She then went 54.08 for the 100 fly title. Columbia’s Ray (55.10) touched second.

Penn’s Wickham won the 100 breast in 1:04.52, but the big excitement came when freshman Sydney Tan took second place over Columbia’s Shahar by 1/100, 1:05.00 to 1:05.01.

Penn senior and co-captain Taylor Sneed won the 200 fly with a Sheerr Pool record of 2:00.31; teammate Madeleine Jardeleza (2:02.40) was second and Columbia’s Kristine Ng (2:05.14), third.

Quaker freshman Phan won the 50 free in 23.63. Columbia’s Ray went 23.80 for second. The pair finished fifth and fourth, respectively in the 100 free, though, as Penn’s Virginia Burns (50.80) and Gaffey of the Lions (51.11) led the field.

Ryan Alexander, yet another Quaker freshman, was the victor in the 200 back; she took down Columbia’s Toback 2:01.43 to 2:02.47. Sophomore Ellie Grimes added points to the Quakers’ total with a 2:16.86 win in the 200 breast. Grimes doubled up with a 2:04.91 win over Columbia’s Ng (2:06.72) in the 200 IM.

In diving, Penn’s Cassidy Golden won the 1-meter event, while Maggie Heller won the 3-meter.

Penn finished up their perfect 14-for-14 meet with a 3:25.45 in the 400 free relay. The Quakers’ winning quartet consisted of Dong (51.23), Dollard (51.64), Phan (51.79), and Burns (50.79).

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Mary Alexander

Congratulations Penn!! Five pool records were broken as well!


Well good for Penn, beating Columbia at their own game, suited up, I assume. Columbia has turned off the entire Ivy League over the past few years, suiting up for every meet all season (no exaggeration). I know their fans will post some defense, but being Ivy League Dual Meet Champions last year and placing 4th at Ivy Champs says a lot. I just hope Penn doesn’t follow suit all season (pun intended.)


Great times all around for Penn but I wish both teams had swum without suits. It’s just silly to suit up for these dual meets when other teams in the Ivy League are not suiting up until the mid or last championship meet. Penn is just stooping down to Columbia’s tactics.


Not “stooping down”, merely giving them a taste of their own medicine.

Casual Observer

Last season, Cornell suited up and beat both Penn and Princeton in a dual meet. Neither Penn nor Princeton wore fast suits at the meet. Cornell proceeded to get 7th at Ivies, while Princeton and Penn placed 2nd and 4th, respectively.

Winning dual meets shouldn’t come down to wearing fast suits. Thanks to the arms race started by Columbia, teams have to match tactics in order to have a fair competition. While I agree that everyone not suiting up for dual meets would be ideal, it can’t happen if Columbia always suits up.

Casual Observer

*Correction: Penn women placed 3rd at Ivies last year

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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