CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – It was certainly an exciting first day at the 2015 Women’s Ivy League Swimming & Diving Championships for the University of Pennsylvania. Hosted by Harvard at Blodgett Pool, freshman Virginia Burns brought home her first title, leading the team to finish fourth at the end of the day with 281 points. The championships will continue tomorrow starting with preliminaries at 11 a.m. Finals will begin at 6 p.m. and you can catch all of the action on the Ivy League Digital Network.
Day One Standings
1. Harvard, 449 pts.
2. Princeton, 435 pts.
3. Yale, 410 pts.
4. Penn, 281 pts.
5. Brown, 243 pts.
6. Dartmouth, 160 pts.
7. Columbia, 157 pts.
8. Cornell, 141 pts.
After the Red and Blue started the evening off with a fifth place finish in the 200 free relay, Burns was the lone athlete to represent the Red and Blue in the championship heat of the 500 free. After getting a solid start off the blocks, Burns led the way for most of the race. A Brockton, Mass. native with family members in the stands, Burns won the title in 4:45.67 and made the B-Cut time.
Celebrations all around for freshman Virgina Burns who won the 500 free at the @ivyleaguesports Women's Swimming & Diving Championships! #FightOnPenn 🏊
A photo posted by Penn Athletics (@pennathletics) on Feb 20, 2015 at 8:51am PST
Through the first two events, Penn was in second with 128 points.
In the 200 IM, sophomore Ellie Grimes kept the excitement going for the Red and Blue. Earlier during preliminaries, Grimes broke the school record (2:02.78) set by Laura Klick in 2010 with a time of 2:02.50. She then bested her prelim time during the finals, touching the wall fourth at 2:02.06.
Fellow sophomore Rochelle Dong followed up with another school record-breaking performance in the pool in the 50 free. Dong broke her own record in the event that she recorded at last year’s Ivy Championships (22.97) with her time of 22.81, just .09 of a second behind first-place finisher Elizabeth McDonald of Princeton andmaking the B-Cut time.
Penn closed out the evening with a comeback performance in the 400 medley relay.
Senior Taylor Sneed, sophomore Haley Wickham, and Dong gave the team a steady fourth place spot in the event, but Burns’ final leg pushed the Quakers to a final time of 3:39.74 and a second place finish.