Bulldogs Break Eight School Records, Take Fourth at Ivy League Championships

Rob Harder. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
Rob Harder. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

PRINCETON, N.J. - The Yale men's swimming and diving team closed out a turnaround 2011-2012 season in the same place they ended 2010 - fourth (966.5). But for two seasons that ended so similarly, this year and last year couldn't have been more different: if eight new school records in the past three days is any indication, the Elis can expect even better finishes in the years to come. 

Saturday's action began with the 1650-yard freestyle, the third distance event of the weekend. Freshman Rob Harder took second in all three of them, an impressive line in just his first Ivy League Championship meet. Harder finished all three of those races with NCAA 'B' Cut times, including his time of 15:17.50 in the 1650-yarder. 

Another freshman, Mike Lazris, posted his second top-five finish in a backstroke event with his stellar fourth-place swim in the 200-yard backstroke (1:46.76). Classmate Andy Wingerson also earned points in that event, grabbing 18th in 1:52.24. 

Senior Goksu Bicer was Yale's top finisher in the 100-yard freestyle, winning his heat to take ninth in 44.58. Sophomore Paschall Davis took 13th in 45.05, while classmate Pat Killian finished 22nd in 45.77. 

Freshman Andrew Heymann (2:01.73) and sophomore Danny McDermott (2:02.27) both impressed in the 200-yard breaststroke, taking eighth and ninth, respectively. Freshman Ronald Tsui finished 20th to also add to the Eli point total. 

Coming into this weekend's meet, freshman Alwin Firmansyah had the Ivy League's second-best time in the 200-yard freestyle. He would finish third Saturday, just getting touched out by Princeton's Oliver Bennett, though still earning a 'B' cut time of 1:46.21. Jared Lovett took 12th in 1:51.07 and Ed Becker 16th in 1:53.16. 

Sophomore Tyler Pramer rounded out a solid weekend with a sixth-place finish in the 3-meter diving event. 

Princeton continued its dominance of Ivy League swimming and took home the championship with a score of 1523.5, while Harvard took second. Columbia (1107.5) edged the Bulldogs, who can look to the stellar performances of their freshman class as an indication that the standings will look a little bit different this time next year.