NEW YORK – The Columbia women’s swimming and diving team began a focused mission to climb to the top of the Ivy League this season. This weekend, the Lions will look stamp one of the best seasons in program history with a title at the 2014 Ivy League Championships in Providence, R.I. at Brown’s Katherine Moran Coleman Aquatics Center from Thursday, Feb. 20 – Saturday, Feb. 22.
The three-day meet will begin each day with 11 a.m. preliminaries, and then conclude with finals sessions at 6 p.m. Click the link above to view the full schedule of events.
Adult ticket prices are set for $30 event pass, $4 one-day prelim ticket and $6 one-night finals ticket. Children (under 12) and student with valid ID prices are $1 one-day prelims and $3 one-night finals tickets.
Follow the action via video live stream on The Ivy League Digital Network.
LAST TIME OUT
With Uris Natatorium filled with fans and an undefeated dual-meet season on the line, Columbia capped its best regular season in program history in dominant fashion on Sunday, Feb. 9. The Lions won 10 of 16 events to down Dartmouth,167-124, on senior day to capture an unblemished 7-0 season and an Ivy League dual-meet title.
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Columbia has remained a constant presence in the Collegeswimming.com national rankings this season. For two consecutive weeks, the Lions stood No. 1 in the national top-50 mid-major rankings.
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With a 197-94 win over Cornell, the Lions garnered its second No. 20 national ranking. Columbia was impressive in its annual homecoming meet setting a pair of Uris pool records, highlighted by the fastest weekly 200 medley relay in the nation at 1:40.90.
On Nov. 18, following a weekend with dual meet wins over Yale (185-115) and Penn (166-134), Columbia jumped to hits highest ranking so far this season at No. 15. This ranking came just a week following its first No. 20 ranking behind the Lions first win over Harvard in program history (163.5-135.5).
ROLL WITH KLUGE
Alena Kluge has remained one of the top versatile swimmers in the Ivy League this season. The senior captain went unbeaten in dual-meet action in the 200 IM with clutch wins against both Harvard and Penn. Kluge holds the Ivy League’s fastest 200 IM time this season clocking in at 2:00.26 at the AT&T U.S. Nationals in December.
Kluge has embraced her roll as a team leader and her performance in the pool continued to raise the bar for the Columbia squad. She also holds the Ivy League top-time in the 200 breaststroke at 2:16.02 in a victory over Brown.
Throughout the dual-meet season, first-year Gabbie Toback has been nothing short of stellar for the Lions. The Merrick, N.Y., native set the program 100 backstroke record twice, set another program record in the 200 backstroke and collected 12 wins, including seven individual events and five top finishes as a member of the 200 medley relay squad.
In her first collegiate win, Toback set the Uris Pool and program record in the 100 backstroke against Yale for the first time this season. With a time of 54.52, she broke the previous record of 54.54 set just a week earlier by Harvard’s Danielle Lee. Toback also posted a first-place finish in the 200 back on the day and swam for a repeat winning effort in 100 back against Penn.
Against Cornell, Toback set the Uris Pool record in the 100 backstroke for the second time this season. With a time of 54.24, she bested her previous record time 54.52 set back in November against Yale. Just two weeks later, Toback bested her 100 back record time at the U.S. Nationals with the fastest 100 back split in program history at 54.12 to lead the 400 medley relay.
The first-year capped her dual-meet season with another record setting performance in the 200 backstroke against Dartmouth. She clocked in with a time of 1:58.25 to set a new program and Uris pool record in the event. Toback bested both records previously held by teammate Kluge.
NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCKS
The future for Columbia swimming will be on display this weekend with a number of young swimmers expected to continue with strong performances this season. Along with Toback, the newcomers have combined for a total of 19 individual and six relay wins throughout the season for an amazing start to begin their collegiate careers.
Trudi Patrick emerged as a force for the Lions success with a trio of wins in the 200 butterfly and a pair of wins in the 100 butterfly this season. Patrick grabbed wins against Yale, Penn, Princeton, Brown and Dartmouth. In a victory at Brown, the first-year was phenomenal in the 200 fly setting a new program record with a time of 1:59.91. The Barnard College student bested the previous record time of 2:00.43 that was held by Barnard alumna Lucy Eccleston since 2001.
Tiffany Warmuth has also posted a trio of wins on the year with a victory in the 200 free over Yale, Cornell and at the Frank Elm Invite. Michi Aisawa captured her first win of the season in the 100 fly against Cornell.
Celia Frick notched two victories in the Lions defeat over Cornell last Saturday. Frick swam the 100 breast in a first-place time of 1:02.95 and continued to impress in the 200 breast for a winning time of 2:17.47.
Jennifer Shahar picked up her first win in the 100 breaststroke in the home opener against Harvard. The New Jersey native has only been eclipsed in the event this season by teammate Frick.
LIONS TO LOOK FOR:
Ivy League Rank: #1 - 200 IM (2:00.26)
Ivy League Rank: #1 – 200 Breaststroke (2:16.02)
Ivy League Rank: #4 - 400 IM (4:16.80)
Ivy League Rank: #7 - 100 Backstroke (55.48)
Ivy League Rank: #7 - 200 Backstroke (1:59.87)
At the 2013 Ivy League Championships, Kluge took the crown in the 400 IM and earned first-team honors in the 400 medley relay. Kluge also added a pair of second-team nods in the 200 IM and 200 medley relay.
Ivy League Rank: #1 - 100 Breaststroke (1:01.51)
Ivy League Rank: #6 - 200 Breaststroke (2:17.48)
At the 2013 Ivy League Championships, Gaffey earned second-team honors in the 100 breaststroke with a runner-up finish behind league record holder Katie Meili ‘13CC.
Ivy League Rank: #2 - 100 Backstroke (53.68)
Ivy League Rank: #2 - 200 Backstroke (1:58.25)
Ivy League Rank: #6 - 200 Backstroke (1:59.70)
Ivy League Rank: #8 - 100 Backstroke (55.62)
At the 2013 Ivy League Championships, Huang earned first-team honors in 400 medley relay.
Ivy League Rank: #3 - 200 Butterfly (1:59.91)
Ivy League Rank: #8 - 100 Butterfly (54.72)
Ivy League Rank: #3 - 100 Breaststroke (1:02.49)
Ivy League Rank: #4 - 100 Butterfly (54.50)
At the 2013 Ivy League Championships, Ray earned second-team honors in 200 medley relay.
Ivy League Rank: #4 - 1000 Freestyle (10:04.28)
Ivy League Rank: #8 - 1650 Freestyle (16:52.90)
Ivy League Rank: #5 - 100 Breaststroke (1:02.95)
Ivy League Rank: #5 - 200 Breaststroke (2:17.30)
Ivy League Rank: #9 - 200 IM (2:03.15)
Ivy League Rank: #5 - 1000 Freestyle (10:05.22)
Ivy League Rank: #8 - 200 Butterfly (2:01.02)
Ivy League Rank: #8 - 400 IM (4:23.08)
Ivy League Rank: #9 - 200 Breaststroke (2:17.75)
Ivy League Rank: #7 - 1000 Freestyle (10:05.41)
Ivy League Rank: #7 - 1650 Freestyle (16:52.58)
Ivy League Rank: #9 – 400 IM (4:23.81)
Ivy League Rank: #10 - 200 Freestyle (1:49.95)