Big Green swimmers sink Maine

by CJ Ryan | 11/8/06 6:00am

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The swimming and diving programs dominated Maine on Sunday.
by Jennie Post / The Dartmouth

On the road on Friday at Boston College, the Eagles took a slim victory over the women's team, 156.5-143.5, in a very tense meet that was decided by the final relay; while the men's team dropped 173-126 to BC.

In women's action, captain Melissa Kern '07 won three races of the eight different events in which the women's squad finished first. Showing the strength of her endurance as well as her versatility, she took first in the 1,000-yard freestyle, 500-yard freestyle and 200-yard butterfly.

Heather Jankins '09 finished first in the 100-yard breaststroke, while Lizzie Rippe '07 won the 100-yard butterfly. Liz Mancuso '08 captured first place in the 200-yard individual medley race.

In diving, Kathleen Brady '10 was the high finisher in the one-meter event. The 200-yard medley relay team of Rippe, Jankins, Mancuso and Meredith Blank '10 also secured a first place finish.

In the men's meet, the Big Green posted seven first-place finishes despite the loss. Among them, Kevin Ellis '09 excelled, taking first in three events: the 100-yard, 400-yard and 600-yard freestyle races. Gordon Russell '08 also tacked on a couple of victories for the Green in the 100-yard and 200-yard backstroke races.

Andrew Ballentine '09 doubled up on events, taking first in the 200-yard breaststroke, and second in the one-meter diving event, proving his versatility. His teammates took third through fifth in the one-meter dive, showing depth at that event.

On Saturday, the women's swimming and diving team competed in a tough meet at home against a talented Columbia team, but fell short of a victory, 167-130. Kern, along with Mancuso, Jankins and Laura Hester '09 swam to a first-place finish two seconds ahead of the pack in the 400-yard freestyle relay, earning valuable points.

Kern had yet another stellar performance, finishing first in the 500-yard freestyle and the 1000-yard freestyle, and second in the 200-yard butterfly. Mancuso also netted the squad key first place points for her work in the 200-yard individual medley.

Brady finished first place in the three-meter diving event, and Jackie Benson '08 also swam to a first place finish in the 200-yard breaststroke.

The Dartmouth men's swimming and diving team recorded a Saturday loss, 205-87, to a tough visiting Columbia squad.

Andrew Berry '08 secured the only first-place finish for the Green, when he recorded a 302.99 in the men's one-meter diving event.

Eight second-place finishes were not enough to lift the squad to victory over Columbia. Notable performances from the meet were Ellis's second-place finish in the 50-yard and 200-yard freestyle races, and Ballentine's second-place finish in the 200-yard backstroke, and third-place finish in the 100-yard butterfly.

Capping off a weekend full of meets, the Dartmouth women crushed Maine 168-132 in Sunday's swimming and diving action. Jankins and Mancuso took first-place finishes in two events to lead the women's squad to a crucial victory.

Jankins won the 100-yard breaststroke and 100-yard freestyle, while Mancuso dominated in the 200-yard fly and 200-yard individual medley races.

"Winning on Sunday after two days of racing just proves how tough we are as a team and how well our training is paying off," said Mancuso. "These meets were an excellent starting point to the season. We can take what we need to work on, and use that to our advantage in the upcoming meets."

Mancuso went on to praise the work of the coaching staff, which has had to manage a newly integrated program.

"The team is doing very well under head coach Jim Wilson and two full-time assistant coaches Jesup Szatkowski and Rachel Stratton," he said. "Jim has done a great job of integrating the teams, and it has definitely been a positive experience so far."

Julianne Mifflin '08 took a first-place finish in the one-meter diving event, while Brady won her event yet again on the three-meter board.

Kern won the 500-yard freestyle race, Katie Morrison '09 took a victory in the 1000-yard freestyle race and Benson tacked on another first-place finish in the 200-yard breaststroke race.

The men's swimming and diving team also chalked up a tally mark in its win column, defeating Maine on Sunday, 174-121. Ellis was a triple winner, racking up victories in the 50-yard and 100-yard freestyle races in addition to the 100-yard fly.

The Big Green recorded four double winners: Ballentine placed first in the 200-yard and 1000-yard freestyles, Russell won the 100-yard and 200-yard backstrokes and Travis Tyler '07 logged victories in the 200-yard and 500-yard freestyles.

Berry dominated the one-meter and three-meter diving events, scoring 335.17 on the one-meter board, a Dartmouth Big Green record, surpassing the previous record of 332.90 set by Toby Hays '99 during the 1998-99 season.