Easop Lee Wins Brutal 1000 Free, 500 Free, 400 IM Triple; Duke and UNC Split

Karl Ortegon
by Karl Ortegon 11

February 01st, 2020 News




  • Duke 152.5, UNC 147.5

Boosted by a heroic triple from sophomore Easop Lee and clutch sprint wins from Alyssa Marsh, the Duke Blue Devil women defended home ground against a feisty UNC program.

Lee first took to the 1000 free, Lee was out in front and the race stayed that way until the end, as she clocked a 9:46.71 with UNC’s Robyn Dryer (9:50.95) and Bryanna Cameron (9:54.02) behind her. Cameron would later blast a 1:56.06 to win the 200 fly by almost two full seconds as six women broke two minutes there.

Lee’s next races, the 500 free and 400 IM, were bunched into the last portion of today’s session. First, she took control of the 500 free, going 4:46.15 to win over Dryer again (4:50.74). UNC had maintained a lead for the last couple events, but Lee’s 500 free win put Duke within two points.

Alyssa Marsh won a nail-biter in the 100 fly, going 52.06 over UNC’s Emma Cole (52.18) as the Blue Devils broke into the lead. In the 400 IM, Duke’s Connie Dean led after 300 yards, but UNC’s Bryanna Cameron and Lee pushed ahead of Dean into the final 50. Down the stretch, Lee’s 27.36 final 50 was enough to edge Cameron, 4:14.17 to 4:14.36, with Dean third in 4:14.73.

It was a crucial swing in Duke’s favor, as they simply needed to have one relay not get DQ’d to win by one point after the 400 free relay. Their A team, sans Marsh, was 3:18.41 to claim second and clinch the meet.

Marsh, for her part, rocketed to wins in the 50 free (22.02) and 100 free (48.35), while Duke freshman Emma Shuppert grabbed one of the tightest, and most clutch, wins: she was 53.14 to out-touch UNC’s Sophie Lindner (53.16) and Grace Countie (53.24).

Marsh was also outstanding on the 200 medley relay, splitting a 22.00 on Duke’s fly leg for a 1.7-second advantage over UNC’s fly leg. Duke freshman Sarah Snyder was 21.98 to hit the wall at 1:36.52.

UNC swam a great meet, nevertheless. Emma Cole dropped a 1:45.65 in the 200 free over Duke’s Melissa Pish (1:46.60), as Cole was 27.09 over the final 50 yards as compared to Pish’s 28.10.

Caroline Hauder was electric in the 100 breast, throwing down a 59.29 to win by almost two full seconds, a best time by over half a second and only her second time under a minute. Lindner avenged her 100 back loss with a 200 back victory in 1:54.69, and Allie Reiter was 2:13.35 in the 200 breast to deny Duke’s Kayle Park (2:13.47) and Dean (2:13.79).

While they would lose as long as Duke didn’t DQ, the UNC women still combined for a massive 3:15.94 in the 400 free relay, getting a 48.51 lead-off from Hauder and a 48.86 split from Cole. Their time was just two-tenths off their time at 2019 NCAAs.



  • UNC 168, Duke 132

A competitive meet on the men’s side, UNC collected the win more decisively.

Three Tar Heel men were double winners today: Valdas Abaliksta in the breaststrokes, Dimitrios Dimitriou in the distance events, and Tyler Hill in the 100 back and 100 fly.

Abaliksta first took the 100 breast, going 53.74 for a 1-2 with Jacob Rauch (54.30). They’d finish in the same order in the 200 breast, 1:59.39 to 2:00.73. Dimitriou was 9:11.35 in the 1000 free, coming home in 24.72 to edge Duke’s Zach Washart (9:11.83) in one of many close finishes. In the 500 free, Dimitriou was the only finisher under 4:30 with a 4:23.60.

Hill, meanwhile, was 47.53 to edge Duke’s Nathaniel Hartley (47.78) in the 100 back. Then, in the 100 fly, he was 48.03 to lead a UNC 1-2-3 with Greg Brocato (48.20) and Santos Villalon (48.91). Villalon also took the 200 fly, going 1:47.90; he’s a second-semester, freshman addition from Spain.

Other big winners for UNC were Tomas Sungalia in the 200 free (1:35.79) over Duke’s Sheldon Boboff (1:36.49) and Chris Thames in the 200 back (1:45.04).

Duke claimed both relays and had a sprint double from Miles Williams.

In the 200 medley, Hartley was 22.22 to lead off, followed by Cole Reznick (24.52), Charlie Gingrich (20.96), and Williams (19.09). Abaliksta was 23.78 on the breast leg for UNC, but Williams’ anchor brought the Blue Devils back to win it.

Williams then took the 50 free in 20.03, then out of the break, was 44.13 to win the 100 free. Reznick would return in the 400 IM to emerge victorious, going 3:57.64. Finally, Duke split 44’s across the board to go 2:57.33, just able to hold off UNC’s 2:57.46. Hill, notably, ripped a 43.21 split for UNC.

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3 years ago

times have changed when Duke women are defending their home turf and UNC women are the ‘feisty’ underdog…

3 years ago

these look like taper times

3 years ago

Yeahhh, let’s go ‘Sop!!

3 years ago

22.00 in the 50 fly? Wow.

Reply to  Swimmerj
3 years ago

**cough** Duke was tapered **cough**

Old timer
3 years ago

Do we know why these teams suited up? Just interested

Reply to  Old timer
3 years ago

vying for spots on ACC team?

Reply to  Old timer
3 years ago

UNC switched to Arena so maybe they were trying the new brand out

Reply to  Old timer
3 years ago

Big rivalry?

Reply to  Old timer
3 years ago

Duke requested they suit up

3 years ago

UNC for most improved team

About Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon studied sociology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, graduating in May of 2018. He began swimming on a club team in first grade and swam four years for Wesleyan.

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