WILLIAMSTOWN, MA -- Williams College wrapped up its 13th NESCAC championship with the greatest margin of victory in the history of the conference, outscoring second-place Amherst by a 790.5 point margin. The Williams women won all but one event in the Sunday night session, showcasing its depth and top-tier talent to recapture the conference crown after losing to Amherst in 2013. The Ephs scored 2007 points, the most in conference history.
In the first event of the night, sophomore Katherine Bennett (1st – 1:59.22) upset defending champion Margaret Rosenbaum of Hamilton (2nd – 2:00.86). Even at the mid-way mark, Bennett pulled away in the last lap, securing the first victory of the night for the Ephs. Rookie teammate Olivia Jackson (3rd – 2:01.98) placed third in a best-time finish.
The Ephs found another individual title in the 100-yard freestyle, with sophomore Faye Sultan (1st – 51.21) edging out Connecticut senior Julia Pielock (2nd – 51.59) for the win. Rounding out the top five were two more Connecticut women, with sophomore Sam Pierce (3rd – 52.05) and Skye Qi Marigold (5th – 53.05) scoring points for the Camels.
Sophomore standout Emily Hyde of Amherst (1st – 2:18.11) won in the 200-yard breaststroke event, repeating her title from 2013. Rookie Olivia Clark (2nd – 2:19.59) dropped three seconds from her morning prelim swim to take second place for the Ephs.
Williams swept the 200-yard butterfly event, capturing first through fourth places in convincing fashion. Led by rookie Megan Pierce (1st – 2:05.23), the Williams contingent included senior Aly Levine (2nd – 2:06.46), sophomore Paige Haller (3rd -- 2:06.78), and first year Sofie Pietrantonio (4th – 2:06.94).
In the three-meter diving, Williams won its fourth event of the night. Senior McKenzie Murdoch (1st – 499.70) set a pool record en route to first place finish on the boards, edging teammate Michelle Higgins (2nd – 484.55). Placing third for the Lord Jeffs was senior Lizzy Linsmayer (3rd – 444.05).
In the last event of the meet, the 400-yard freestyle relay, the Williams quartet of Lauren Jones, Olivia Jackson, Faye Sultan, Sarah Thompson (1st -- 3:27.67 – Pool Record) set a pool record en route to first. The women found themselves losing to Bates at the mid-way point, but charged back in the last two legs to win both the event and the meet in dominating fashion.
"I think that was one of our best ever final Sunday performances," said Head Coach Steven Kuster. "The women had a great morning, I thought it would be hard to top this evening but they did that and then some."
"Our focus all weekend was on the team and making each effort count, and I think the results speak for how good a team effort this was."
FINAL TEAM SCORES:
1. Williams – 2007
2. Amherst – 1216.5
3. Middlebury - 1207
4. Bates – 1132
5. Connecticut – 1000.5
6. Bowdoin – 813.5
7. Tufts – 747.5
8. Wesleyan – 574
9. Hamilton – 503
10. Colby – 443
11. Trinity – 383
200 Backstroke – Katherine Bennett, Williams (1:59.22 – Pool Record)
100 Freestyle – Faye Sultan, Williams (51.21)
200 Breaststroke – Emily Hyde, Amherst (2:18.11)
200 Butterfly – Megan Pierce, Williams (2:05.23)
3 Meter Diving – McKenzie Murdoch, Williams (499.70 – Pool Record)
400 Yard Freestyle Relay – Williams: L. Jones, O. Jackson, F. Sultan, S. Thompson (3:27.67 – Pool Record)
Rookie of the Meet – Megan Pierce (Williams)
Diver of the Meet – McKenzie Murdoch (Williams)
Swimmer of the Meet – Sarah Thompson (Williams)
Senior (4 yr.) High Point Diver – McKenzie Murdoch (Williams)
Senior (4 yr.) High Point Swimmers
- Maggie Rosembaum – Hamilton (380)
- Jenny Hu – Tufts (292)
- Julia Pielock – Connecticut (290)
- Alyssa Levine – Williams (288)
- Andie Tibbets – Middlebury (287.5)