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Record-smashing swimmer honored

By David Rothstein

Yvonne M. Grierson G, a four-time national Division III champion and the 1990 National Collegiate Athletic Association Division III co-Swimmer of the Year, was named yesterday as the recipient of the Honda-Broderick Division III Athlete of the Year award. This is the highest award ever given to an MIT athlete.

Grierson, now a graduate student in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, swam for four years with the MIT swimming team during her years as an undergraduate student. She holds 11 MIT records, three of which -- the 100-yard freestroke, the 50 butterfly, and the 100 fly -- are also New England Conference records. Her 56.18-second time in the 100 fly set an NCAA Division III record.

"Winning this [award] is like icing on the cake," said Grierson in a telephone interview last night from her Somerville residence. She said that throughout college she had been more interested in recording fast times, but was pleased with the Honda award.

Grierson began swimming at the age of six years, but stopped later on and indeed had not intended to swim at MIT. But the "team was fun" at MIT, and Grierson joined in her freshman year, beginning one of the most successful sports careers of any MIT athlete. Grierson will be flown to Nashville on Jan. 9 to attend a presentations banquet.

Along with her four national titles (three times in the 100 fly, once in the 100 freestroke), Grierson has to her name many MIT and other national honors. These include: 1987 MIT Freshman Athlete of the Year; 1988, 1989 and 1990 MIT Female Athlete of the Year; 1989 New England College Athletic Conference Division III Female Athlete of the Year; and 11 NCAA Division III All-America awards.