Bulldog Swimmers and Divers Honored

Team Huddle. (photo by Tom Lynam '13, Yale Sports Publicity)
Team Huddle. (photo by Tom Lynam '13, Yale Sports Publicity)

Yale Swimming and Diving Team Holds Annual Banquet

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Yale men's swimming and diving team held its annual year-end banquet on Tuesday Apr. 9. The banquet was held at the President's Ballroom at Woosley Hall. The banquet offers an opportunity for the team to celebrate its achievements of the season and to honor top performers and team members. 

After a brief introduction from Robert J.H. Kiphuth Head Coach of Men's Swimming and Diving, Tim Wise, the three seniors, Mike Dominski, Jared Lovett and Aaron Seriff-Cullick, gave speeches filled with gratitude, fond memories of the past, and advice for the rest of the team moving forward.

The first award of the night was the S. Livingston Mather Swimming Award. The award is given for outstanding performance in backstroke swimming. The late S. Livingston Mather, class of 1905, donated the prize. Sophomore Mike Lazris was this year's recipient.

Sophomore Andrew Heymann won the first of his three awards for the evening with the M. Davies Award, which honors outstanding performance in breaststroke swimming. The family of Melindi Davies, class of 1998, donated the award.

Heymann was also awarded the Tim Jecko Award, which honors outstanding performances in the individual medley. Tim Jecko was a member of the 1956 United States Olympic Team and accrued many championships and records during his swimming career. The award was established in 2004 in honor of Jecko by the class of 1959, of which Jecko was a member.

Heymann shared the Heaton High Point Award with sophomore Alwin Firmansyah. The Heaton High Point Award is awarded to that swimmer or diver who has scored the highest possible number of points for the team in dual meet competition over the past season.  Firmansyah and Heymann each accumulated a total of 159 points this season. 

Junior Pat Killian was awarded the MacLeish Memorial Swimming Trophy. The trophy is awarded to that member of the Yale Swimming team, who through his efforts and high ideals in sportsmanship and loyalty, best exemplifies the spirit of Kenneth MacLeish. Hassted R. Vanderpoel, class of 1935, established the award in 1936 in memory of Kenneth MacLeish, class of 1918, who was killed in World War I. 

Sophomore Robert Dowd is the 2013 recipient of the Harry Burke Award, awarded for outstanding contribution to Yale swimming by an underclassman. Established in 1966, the Harry Burke Award honors the former freshmen swim coach.

Seriff-Cullick is the 2013 winner of the William Leeming Jelliffe Award, which is awarded to the senior who has shown the greatest progress and development in swimming or diving ability and outstanding leadership during his college years. This prize is given in memory of William Leeming Jelliffe by his father, the late Dr. Smith Ely Jelliffe.

Lovett received the Phil Moriarty Prize, which honors former Yale Varsity Swim Coach and United States Olympic Coach Phil Moriarty. It is awarded to the upper-class member of the Men's Varsity team who has contributed immeasurably to the Yale Swimming tradition by his dedication and personal achievement. The Yale Swimming Association established the award in 1969. 

The final award of the evening was the Robert J.H. Kiphuth Award. It is awarded to that individual who has shown outstanding service, dedication and loyalty to Yale University and the Yale Swimming Program. The award is named in honor of the former Yale Varsity Swim Coach and United States Olympic Coach. The Yale Swimming Association established the award in 2003. The 2013 recipients are the parents of junior Ed Becker, Ed and Mina Becker. 

Report by Charles Tuggle, Yale Sports Publicity