BRYN MAWR, Pa. - The Bryn Mawr swim team celebrated their Senior Day earlier Saturday afternoon in their final home meet of the season. The Owls got plenty of great performances against Centennial Conference leaders Ursinus College, led by two victories by Lillian Oyen-Ustad in the final home meet of her career.
Oyen-Ustad got her day started with a great race in the 50 freestyle. The senior started out strong in the first 25 yards or so, building a slight advantage over Ursinus' Oliviah Rachael. However, the Bears' swimmer steadily closed the gap over the rest of the race, pushing Oyen-Ustad to the limit. On this Senior Day, though, Oyen-Ustad would not be denied. She poured in one last burst to claim the top spot and out-touch Rachael by .02 of a second.
The New York native's second win came in the 100 freestyle, and this time by a much more comfortable margin. Oyen-Ustad went out in style, pulling away early and racing home to win the event by almost two full seconds. She capped off her day in the final event of the meet, as she swam a brilliant final leg of Bryn Mawr's 200 free relay.
Charlotte Xu also swam in her final events in the Bryn Mawr pool today. The senior took fifth in the 50 freestyle, and then swam the opening leg as one of Bryn Mawr's 200 free relay teams. The Owls' third senior, co-captain Shanzeh Shunaid, was unable to be in the water for Bryn Mawr on the day, but still did a fantastic job as a vocal leader and supporter of the team.
There were plenty of other tremendous performances for the Owls in their final meet before the Centennial Conference Championship. Several swimmers set personal-best times, starting with Lucy Bruemmer. After racing to a season-best in the 200 individual medley (2:28.19), the sophomore followed that up with a new PB in the 100 free. Ruth Mullin also set a personal best time, as she posted a time of 2:49.17 in the 200 butterfly. Anna Danesh also claimed a new personal best in the 200 backstroke. She just missed a third-place finish in the event, but still finished with a new PB of 2:25.40.
Lauren Birmingham just missed a season-best time in the 200 freestyle. The Owls sophomore swam a 2:12.56 in that event to take fourth place.
Several other swimmers put on strong showings in events that they were swimming for the first time this season, in preparation for champs week. Varuna Jasodanand swam the 200 breaststroke and took second place with a time of 2:42.11. In the 200 fly, Maya Schneider took third place with a 2:29, just behind the second-place finish of Becca Adlai-Gail in that event. Adlai-Gail and Faith Meacham each also swam the 400 individual medley for the first time in this campaign, with both putting up strong times.
With the regular season now behind them, the Owls now get to work on tapering and preparing for the Centennial Conference Championship. That four-day event is slated to start on Thursday, February 21st and will be hosted this year by Gettysburg College.