Danielle Liu ’14, Katherine Sweetser ’16, Kait Simpson ’14 and Amy Zhao ’14 captured first place and the New England record in the 400-Yard Medley Relay with a time of 3:29.64, shattering the previous record by 1.85 seconds.
The team posted three new school records and another New England record. The 400-Yard Relay record, however, was short-lived. As the Andover swimmers jumped back into the pool to celebrate, the judges convened. Shortly after, the verdict came out: Andover’s 400-Yard Medley Relay A-team was disqualified for re-entering the water without permission.
At the end of the two-day event Andover finished
in sixth place with 167 points. Despite being disappointed with the outcome, the team posted numerous personal and season best times.
Liu, who is committed to swim at Yale next year, repeated her success from last year’s meet by breaking two individual records in the 100-Yard Breaststroke and the 200-Yard Free.
“I was overjoyed. I can’t even put it into words,” said Liu.
“Going into the meet, I did have my eyes set on the school and New England records… Going into a race with the confidence and knowledge that you’ve trained all you could for this and you’re capable of it, you feel like you can do anything and it makes actually reaching the goal that much sweeter,” she continued.
Head Coach Paul Murphy, who is in his 23rd year of coaching, said, “Danielle is one of the most versatile swimmers we have had since Hee-Jin Chang ’05. She is a powerful competitor who combines a great sense of humor with focused attention to her swimming. We will miss Danielle.”
In the 200-Yard
Medley Relay, in which Liu, Sweetser, Simpson and Zhao, who formed the 400-Yard Relay team, returned to the pool, Andover took home second place with a new school record. The team also saw double-digit individual personal best times for the second week in a row.
With only the New England Championships ahead, the team is looking to build on its performance for this weekend.
“It was a rough ending to the meet, but we’re looking ahead to next weekend at New Englands. Hopefully, we’ll lock up a top four finish and cap off this really amazing season with some hardware,” said Simpson.
Murphy said, “[We] hope to be in the top three at New Englands! We have stiff competition from Suffield, Exeter and Choate.”
Seniors Liu, Simpson, Zhao, Lauren Conte, Corinna Torabi and Mary Catherine Nanda are not lacking any emotions heading into the last meet of their high school careers.
“I’m so proud to be apart of such a great group of girls, and to call them my teammates is unreal because they are truly amazing. Honestly, this season was incredible, and I’m definitely going to cry because I’m just going to miss them so much,” said Liu.
Andover Girls Swimming will head to Hotchkiss this weekend to bid for the New England Championship title.