Streaking past its opponents, Andover’s 400 Free Relay team of Co-Captain Kait Simpson ’14, Danielle Liu ’14, Katherine Sweetser ’17 and Co-Captain Amy Zhao ’14 toppled the fifth record of the day for Andover Girls Swimming, capping off a crushing 122-64 victory against Loomis Chaffee.
Returning to the pool after a recent loss, the girls swept first place in all events at Loomis last Saturday, shattering two New England records and five pool records in the process. Although the team faced the challenges of a short-course meter pool, which is 25 meters long instead of the traditional 25 yards, Andover’s depth as a team catapulted it to victory.
“We don’t train short-course meters, but our team still did a great job adapting quickly to the new pool setup, [where] the races are longer and more exhausting,” said Zhao. “It was amazing to see so many speedy times so early on in the season. It will only get better from here, which is really exciting.”
Liu claimed the first record of the day in the 200 IM, collapsing the pool and New England records with a time of 2:22.18. Just behind her, Corinna Torabi ’14 and Morgan Rooney ’17 swept second and third place respectively.
In the next event, Zhao unseated a pool record that she had set two years ago, crushing all competition in a quick 26.79. During a break, Mia LaRocca ’16 and Sabrina Rivers ’14 took third and fourth place in diving respectively. After the break, Liu returned to the pool and demolished the pool record for the 400 Free.
For the fourth record of the day, Andover’s 200 Free relay team of Zhao, Duserick, Sweetser and Simpson blew through its event for another New England record. Soon after, Lauren Conte ’14, Simpson and Soubie Im ’15 dominated the 100 Backstroke in first, second and third place respectively.
“I thought everybody did great today,” said Simpson, “We are in a good place for this time in the season.”
In addition to unbeatable skill in the pool, the team also boasts strong team chemistry.
“Team spirit on deck was great. A big shout out to Sasha Newton [’16] and Kristen Overly [’15] for coming and supporting [us] even though they were out and couldn’t swim. It really meant a lot to have them cheering for us there,” Simpson added.
Newton said, “Cheering for my team is always fun because I’m sure to witness some phenomenal swims and many personal bests. I am so proud of my team for what we have accomplished this season already and what I know we can accomplish in the future.”
The team remains grounded, however, and will continue to focus on making improvements.
“It was really a great win, but we will continue training as hard,” said Zhao.
This Saturday, the team will search for a repeat performance against Northfield Mount Hermon (NMH) in its only home meet of the season.