Zhao ’14 and MacRae ’13 Expected to Make Waves Again

Andover Girls Swimming and Diving is preparing for a promising season this year after finishing fourth at Interschols last year.

Andover’s returning team members include All-American diver Lilybet MacRae ’13 and All-American swimmer in the 50m Free Amy Zhao ’14.

This year, Andover is swimming in a different meet at the end of the season, the more competitive Eastern Interscholastic Swimming and Diving Championships. Andover Boys Swimming is also making the transition.

“Fewer people will place at this meet, but more people will get to swim,” said Qiqi Ren ’15.

For the 50m Free, Zhao holds the Andover/Exeter record with a time of 24.15 seconds, less than a second away from the school record of 23.10. Zhao also broke the school record for the 100m butterfly in 2011 with a time of 56.55.

MacRae has broken all existing school diving records during her career on the team as well as the New England Prep record for both the One Meter Diving (6 Dives) and the One Meter Diving (11 Dives). She even won the AAU Nationals this summer.

“I am very confident in the [diving] team,” said MacRae. “We are looking very good, and I think we will do really well this season. Everyone on the diving team this year is a returner, and they are all getting better and they have a lot of potential,” MacRae said. “All the divers can do one and a halfs, but Coach Belinda Wolf will probably work on front doubles and twisters.”

Last year, swimmers Zhao, Julia Torabi ’12, Molly Levene ’12 and Danielle Liu ’14 broke the school record for the 200m Free Relay, and Andover will have two of those four swimmers returning to the team this season.

Liu also broke the 500m Freestyle school record last year with a time of 5:01.03. She joined the 400m Free Relay team last year along with Julia Smachlo ’13, Hailey Novis ’13 and Zhao to break the Andover/Exeter record with a time of 3:37.86.

The team will look for leadership from Captain Lucy Frey ’13.

“Our new captain… will help support the team and help us have a great season,” said Ren.

Andover is hosting an inter-squad Blue/White scrimmage this Friday that will help determine the teams strengths and weaknesses for the upcoming season.

“The Blue/White scrimmage will help give us a baseline for the season because a lot of people are still getting back into [swimming] from last season,” said MacRae.

Andover hopes to open the season with a win in its first official meet of the season on January 5 against Choate.