TCNJ tops Johns Hopkins, falls to West Chester in Tri Meet

The College of New Jersey hosted a Tri meet yesterday with Division II West Chester University and fellow Division III team, Johns Hopkins University.

West Chester won 8 of the 16 contested events on the men’s side, giving them a clear victory over both TCNJ (175-124) and JHU (175-116). The more interesting contest was between the 7th and 8th place finishers at last year’s NCAA championship: TCNJ and JHU, respectively.

While TCNJ finished 2 points ahead of JHU at last year’s Big Meet, the CSCAA rankings currently have JHU ranked #4 and TCNJ as #7.

JHU standouts Andrew Greenhalgh, Kyle Otazu and Evan Holder each picked up an individual win to aid the cause for the Blue Jays. Greenhalgh carried off the 1000 freestyle with a 9:36.23, the second-fastest time in Division III this year. Greenhalgh also competed in the 500, where he finished runner up to 27-year-old Victor Polyakov of West Chester (4:37.97 to 4:40.90). Greenhalgh currently sits at the top of the Division III charts in the 500 with a season best from December of 4:23.00.

Otazu picked up the second win of the session for the Jays in the 200 butterfly. He led from start to finish to touch in with a final time of 1:57.22. And the final individual winner for the Jays, Holder, laid claim to the 400 IM with a 4:07.26 to hold off the late charge of West Chester’s Michael Oliver. Holder has the fastest time in DIII in the 200 IM (1:46.82) and 200 freestyle (1:37.10) – and both are the only two A cuts swum so far this season for the men. This meet Holder also competed in the 200 freestyle and finished runner up to Polyakov (1:42.52 to 1:43.43).

TCNJ is one of those great little teams that could, and they’ve got the sprinters on their side in this battle. The Lions snagged four individual victories and one of the relays to top the Jays. After opening on a runner up relay, TCNJ freshman Alexander Skoog got things heated up in the 100 backstroke by winning the touch-out by .06 over West Chester’s Dan Sokman (53.70 to 53.76). Later he came back to the pool to grab a runner up finish in the 200 backstroke behind – yep, Polyakov of West Chester (1:53.63 to 1:55.54).

Immediately in the next event, senior James Shangle snatched up the 100 breast by over 1.5 seconds, finishing at the head of the field with a 56.45. Shangle is ranked 3rd in DIII right now in the event with a season best of 55.07, and fourth in the 200 with a 2:00.85. Shangle also wrangled a second place finish in the 200 breast at this meet behind West Chester’s Oliver (205:39 to 2:06.54).

Two events later and the sprint kings were at it again in the 50. Joseph Dunn grabbed the win in 21.30 and then handed off the torch to Scott Vitabile to take the 100 freestyle in 47.52, seven-tenths in front of second place. In the 100 fly, the two went 2-3, respectively, to finish behind West Chester swimer Luke Maguire. (51.14, 52.25, 53.49.)

To close out the meet, the Lions posted a 3:08.60 400 freestyle relay, featuring Dunn, Shangle and Vitabile with Ryan Gajdzisz swimming the second leg. The relay came home almost four seconds ahead of the field. The splits were 47.36 (Dunn), 47.04 (Gajdzisz), 46.99 (Shangle) and 47.21 (Vitabile). The next fastest split in the field was a 47.3 from West Chester’s anchor leg.

For complete meet results, click here. 

JHU is back in the water this Saturday hosting Stephens Institute of Technology at 1pm . TCNJ will resume competition Jan 20th at Stephens Institute of Technology at 3pm.

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About Hannah Saiz

Hannah Saiz fell into a pool at age eleven and hasn't climbed out since. She attended Kenyon College, won an individual national title in the 2013 NCAA 200 butterfly, and post-graduation has seen no reason to exit the natatorium. Her quest for continued chlorine over-exposure has taken her to Wisconsin …

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