Pool Records Fall as Harvard Trumps Columbia

Harvard swept Columbia’s teams Friday Night at the Uris Pool in New York. The Crimson were aided by pool records from Koya Osada, Jing Leung, and Sonia Wang, as well as the men’s 200 free relay.

MEN’S MEET

The Harvard men triumphed in every event except for the diving disciplines to win the meet 220-79.

Harvard displayed their dominance early, taking the 200 medley relay by nearly two seconds over Columbia’s A team. A blistering 20.85 fly split from Steven Tan led the Crimson to a strong victory, taking the win 1:30.22 to 1:31.95. Harvard’s time was only .07 seconds off of their conference-leading season best.

Logan Houck, Brennan Novak, and Kent Haeffner swept the 1000 free to shut out Columbia freshman Eric Ng. Houck and Novak put some distance between themselves and the rest of the field, finishing in 9:14.13 and 9:16.96. Houck currently leads the conference with a 9:12.83 while Novak’s season debut ranks him fourth. Harvard showed similar strength in the 500, landing another one-two-three punch. This time, Jack Boyd and Sava Turcanu led the pack in 4:33.24 and 4:35.65. The pair’s season debuts rank them 5th and 7th in the Ivy League.

Boyd and Turcanu also dominated the 200 free, putting up times of 1:41.63 and 1:41.77 to shut out Columbia sophomore Michal Zyla. Danny Tran and Jack Manchester followed up their teammates with a close race in the 100 back. Tran managed to take the victory, edging out Manchester 50.05 to 50.39. Tran’s time bumps him ahead of Manchester to take the sixth spot in the league rankings.

The 200 back was perhaps the highlight of the men’s meet thanks to Koya Osada, who registered a new pool record and league-leading time of 1:45.77. That time cuts three full seconds off of Osada’s former season best and moves him up to the 15th spot in the national rankings. Osada’s performance is also only about a second and a half slower than the lifetime best he achieved at the Ivy League Championships last year. Fellow Crimson Christian Yeager touched second in 1:49.39 while Columbia’s top finisher Jae Park clocked in at 1:52.10 to take fourth.

Columbia nearly saw a win out of Jia Ho Ng in the 100 breast. The freshman touched first at the 50 in 26.26 ahead of Harvard’s Shane McNamara but couldn’t hold on the last 25. McNamara took the victory by a narrow margin, clocking in at 56.14 to Ng’s 56.33. McNamara succumbed to his teammate Eric Ronda in the 200 breast, however, as Ronda raced home to win in 2:02.07 over McNamara’s 2:02.90. Ronda and McNamara both registered season bests that now rank them second and third in the league this year.

The sprint events were dominated by Harvard speedster Steven Tan who took the 50 in 20.38 and the 100 in 45.10. Both swims were decisive victories with Paul O’Hara touching second in the 50 (20.70) and Columbia’s Kevin Frifeldt claiming the runner-up spot in the 100 (46.12). Tan’s season bests rank him second in the league in both events, sitting only behind Princeton’s En-Wei Hu-Van Wright.

The 200 fly looked to be a three-man Harvard race with Leo Lim coming up victorious in 1:51.62. Fellow Crimson Justin Wu and Jacob Luna were close behind in 1:51.74 and 1:52.20. Columbia’s top finisher Shane Brett touched fourth in 1:52.98.

Max Yakubovich of Harvard cut a half second off his 100 fly season best to win in 48.95, a time that moves him ahead of Princeton’s Ben Schafer to sit second in the league. Columbia’s Terry Li, the only other swimmer to break 50 seconds, touched second in 49.85. Danny Tran brought home the victory in the final individual race of the night, clocking in at 1:50.23 to win the 200 IM. Yeager once again touched second with a time of 1:51.23.

The Harvard men ended the meet with a bang, putting up a pool-record-setting 200 free relay time of 1:20.74 that was spearheaded by Steven Tan’s 19.71 anchor split. Columbia finished over three seconds behind in 1:24.09. Columbia’s only victories of the night came from Jayden Pantel in the diving events, where he won the one-meter with 336.75 points and the three-meter with 394.28 points. Pantel’s three-meter performance broke both not only Columbia’s pool record but also the 15 year old school record formerly held by Mark Fichera.

Harvard’s next dual meet will be against Boston College on January 12th while Columbia will take on Cornell January 16th. Full results for Friday’s men’s meet can be found here.

WOMEN’S MEET

Led by sophomore diver Jing Leung and freshman butterflier Sonia Wang, the Harvard women won comfortably over the Columbia Lions on Friday 201.5 to 98.5.

Leung swept the diving events, scoring 321.30 points on three-meter and 291.23 on one-meter. Her three-meter performance was good enough to slip under the pool record formerly held by Yale’s Lilybet MacRae. Wang turned in three blazing first place finishes, claiming the 200 fly, 200 back, and 400 IM as her own.

In the 200 fly, the freshman nearly cracked the two-minute barrier to break former Harvard swimmer Courtney Otto’s pool record. Her time of 2:00.01 placed over six seconds ahead of runner up Kristine Ng. Wang now holds the top spot in the conference by a second and a half over Princeton’s Isabel Reis as well as the 28th fastest time in the country this year. Ng, a senior at Columbia, touched second with a time of 2:06.41.

Wang returned to win the 200 back in a similar fashion by clocking in at 2:00.79. Teammates Kristina Li and Geordie Enoch secured the one-two-three for the Crimson, touching in 2:03.12 and 2:03.34. With her new season best, Wang put up yet another top time in the conference. She continued her streak by taking the 400 IM in 4:16.98, a whopping 11 and a half seconds ahead of runner up Jessica Antiles of Columbia. She now holds the fastest time in the conference by a hefty margin of eight seconds as well as the 13th fastest time in the nation. Antiles touched in 4:28.42 to hold off Harvard’s Willa Wang, who placed third with her time of 4:29.91.

Harvard’s Daniela Johnson and Victoria Chan managed to outrace Columbia’s Jessica Antiles in the 200 free. The Crimson pair finished in 1:52.00 and 1:52.78 to Antiles’ 1:54.04. Johnson also raced the 200 breast but fell to Columbia’s Maddie Pujadas in one of the few Lions victories of the night. Pujadas beat Johnson by a mere two tenths of a second, winning 2:23.93 to 2:24.13.

The Lions managed to pick up a one-two punch in the 50 free due to the speed of Christina Ray and Kate O’Rourke. Ray won the race by .03 seconds in 24.43, while O’Rourke tied for the runner-up spot with Harvard’s Gabby Sims. Danielle Lee of Harvard returned fire in the 100, winning comfortably in 51.87 to defeat her teammate Holly Christensen. A quick second 50 from Lee secured her victory as she outpaced Christensen’s 53.17.

Lee also claimed a win in the 100 back by beating out teammates Kendall Crawford and Christina Li. Lee touched in 55.51 ahead of Crawford’s 55.86 and Li’s 56.25. Lee and Crawford now rank first and second in the league, while Li’s time clocks in at fourth. Columbia’s top finisher was Mary Ashby who clocked in at 58.91 to place fourth.

Columbia followed up the 100 back by putting up a strong showing in the 100 breast. Jennifer Shahar and Maddie Pujadas were able to hold off a strong closing 50 by Harvard’s Geordie Enoch to finish first and second. Shahar touched in 1:05.20 while Pujadas was not far back in 1:05.60.

The 500 was a two woman race between Harvard’s Willa Wang and Sherry Liu. Neither managed to break the 5:00 barrier but both were close, finishing at 5:00.00 and 5:00.17. The pair now both sit in the league’s top 10, ranking fourth and fifth. In the next event, Kendall Crawford ran away with the 100 fly to claim her victory with a time of 55.29. Columbia’s Ray was over a second back in 56.38. Crawford’s season best places her first in the league, leading Princeton’s Nicole Larson.

Although the 200 IM was swum as an exhibition event, Geordie Enoch still managed to impress by winning in 2:04.46, over four seconds ahead of teammate Meagan Popp. With her time, Enoch usurps Yale’s Emma Smith to become the league leader. Columbia and Harvard split the relays, with Columbia winning the 200 medley relay in 1:44.41 and Harvard throwing down a 1:35.70 in the 200 free relay.

The Harvard women’s dual meet season will continue in January. They are scheduled to take on Brown and Penn at home on the 16th. The Columbia women will face Cornell on the 17th . Full results from Friday’s meet can be found here.

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