Jan. 2, 2009
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - The Bulldog men's swimming and diving team will open 2009 with a meet against Fairfield on Sunday in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The team, which is in Puerto Rico to train heavily before resuming dual meet competition against Cornell and Navy on Jan. 9 (diving) and Jan. 10 (swimming), will begin competition against the Stags at 1:00 p.m.
While the Eli student-athletes have not competed for almost a month due to reading period and exams, the team will be ready for the meet against Fairfield. The winter vacation training trip to Puerto Rico has allowed the Bulldog athletes to train multiple sessions per day without having to balance training with the demands of the Yale academic schedule. The intense practices in Puerto Rico have also allowed the team to have a tough training regimen without needing to worry about the demands of the meets that will occur on an almost weekly basis until the NCAA Championships in March.
The Bulldogs last competed against the Stags of Fairfield in a three-way meet on Dec. 11, 2007. Eli athletes competed in 14 of the 17 events at the meet while Fairfield athletes competed in 16 of the 17 events. The three-way meet also included Southern Connecticut State athletes in all 17 events.
The Bulldogs competed in all the events except for the 100-yard butterfly, 200-yard individual medley and 400-yard freestyle relay. Fairfield had entrants in every event except for the 200-yard individual medley.
Both the one- and three-meter diving events should be strong events for the Bulldogs. No Fairfield athlete placed in the top-five in the events last year while the Bulldogs captured four of the top five spots in both events. While three of the Bulldog competitors have graduated, sophomore Eric Olson returns along with the rest of the Bulldog diving squad. Olson, who has greatly improved since 2007, placed third in the three-meter and fifth in the one-meter event last year.
The Bulldogs won seven of the 14 events they competed in in 2007. Even more impressively, had the Bulldogs only competed against the Fairfield squad, the Bulldogs would have won all except for two of the events that the team entered. Returning event winners for the Bulldogs include sophomore Jason Choi in the 100-yard backstroke, sophomore Sam Goldsmith in the 100-yard breaststroke, junior Jon Taylor in the 50-yard freestyle, junior Colin McCarthy in the 200-yard backstroke and the 200-yard medley relay team.
The only returning athlete from Fairfield who won an event last year is senior Drew Kingman, who edged out Goldsmith for the win in the 200-yard breaststroke by one-tenth of a second. No other returning athlete from Fairfield finished in front of the top Bulldog contestant.
Report filed by Caleb Dorfman '09, Yale Sports Publicity