Andover Girls Swimming Races Past Exies; Scanlon ’03 Sets New Pool Diving Record

Not even the dreaded Big Red Swimmers of Exeter, the second best team in New England last year, could stop the Big Blue wave. After emerging victorious at last Wednesday’s meet against Exeter, the Girls Varsity Swim team closed out their regular season undefeated. The season could not have ended better, with Korean sensation Hee-jin Chang ’05 setting an Andover/Exeter record in the 200 freestyle. Chang ’05 also anchored the record breaking 200 freestyle relay. Kim Walker ’03, Margaret Ramsey ‘03, and Captain Sarah Demers ’03 joined Chang ‘05 in the record breaking effort. Finishing with a time of 1:40.18, the girls broke the school, pool, and Andover/Exeter record for the event. To add to Andover’ s amazing day, four year varsity diver, Captain Janis Scanlon ’03 turned in the performance of her career, breaking Andover’s old pool record and besting 2002 New England Champion of Exeter, Emily Kennedy ’03. The Andover Ladies took blue ribbons in every event, crushing Exeter with a final score of 127-59. Captain Demers ’03 was more than pleased with the team’s performance and the outcome of the meet, saying, “Andover/Exeter is always a big meet for us, and it is sometimes tough to get geared up for Wednesday meets, but we used each other and worked with each other to get pumped and we really took it to them from beginning to end. “It was an awesome way to wrap up the end of the dual meet season and now our focus will be getting ready and psyched for next weekends meet. This is a big boost of confidence for us, and I hope we can ride that wave right through Interschols.” The day could not have started out better, with PA’s relay teams taking first and second in the 200 medley relay. Continuing the momentum in the 200 freestyle, Chang ’05 touched in at an impressive 1:54.83, thirteen seconds ahead of Exie Captain Sarah Ridgeway ‘03. Following Chang ’05 was Ramsey who, although she just missed the two-minute mark, turned in a swim good enough for second place. In the 200 individual medley, Captain Demers ’03 stepped it up, touching in at 2:17.63, to take first in the event. The 50 freestyle was a thriller, with the Big Blue taking a 1-2-4 finish. Finally breaking the 26 second barrier, Tracey Zicherman ’03 took a blue ribbon in the event. Zicherman was followed closely by Emily Brenner ’06 and Kristina Chang ’04. The Diving Divas came ready to rock the pool deck. Stepping up to the board first was Scanlon, competing for the last time on her home board. Exeter brought with them Maine sensation Kennedy, the best diver in New England. Scanlon took Kennedy down, hitting every dive with precision, finishing with a score of 246.9. In the 100 butterfly, Alex Doty ’05 and Liz Demers ’05 placed first and second respectively. Once again Chang ’05 amazed the crowd , taking her second win of the day in the 100 freestyle. PG Ramsey pulled into second with a speedy 55. Next up was the grueling 500 freestyle, which was swum by Katie Faulkner ’06 and Kate Page ’04. The group of Demers ’03, Walker, Ramsey, and Chang ’05 pushed the old record aside and replaced it with an impressive time of 1:40.18. Not only was this a school and A/E record, but it pushed the girls score up to 95 points, sealing the Big Blue’s victory. With star Chang ’05 potentially out for the rest of the season with a back injury, the team looks to ready themselves for Interschols. The question still remains: Can the Big Blue defend their title?