Princeton Men Sign 14; Including Bolles’ D’Alessandro and Italian Jr. Champ Bove

The Princeton men are graduating one of their most successful classes in recent history (probably ranking behind only the class of ’09 in the last decade), including All-American breaststroker Jon Christensen. The class of 12 went undefeated with four-straight Ivy League titles.

But their latest class appears as though it could hold some potential future All-Americans, and certainly some future All-Ivy swimmers in the least. The class of 14 already has 6 swimmers with Olympic Trials Qualifying Times (though some are internationals), adding to the 9 returning swimmers that have the same, and really builds this program up for a bright future.

This class is so rich with talent, that it’s hard to find a fair starting point. We’ll begin with the group of massively-talented breaststrokers that shouldn’t take too long to fill-in for Christensen’s available spot, beginning with Bolles School’s Teo D’Alessandro. His versatility will make him a rock for this class in the future; he’s a 1:38 200 freestyler, a 1:47.2 in the 200 IM; and a 3:53 in the 400 IM.

But he’s good enough to contribute in a whole slew of other events – he’s a 20.6 in the 50 free, and a 45.0 in the 100. He’s one of the few swimmers in the class of 2012 nationwide who can boast both a 55-point in the 100 breaststroke and a 50-point in the 100 fly. D’Allessandro won a pair of bronze medals at last year’s Junior Nationals (in the 100 breast and 200 IM) and seems to be a bona fide star of the future.

D’Alessandro is very versatile, but he won’t necessarily have to carry the breaststroke load in this class. That’s because he has a very focused classmate in Jack Pohlmann from the Dayton Raiders club in Ohio, who is the defending state champion in the 100 with a 55.27. He’s also got a 2:00.15 in the 200. Both of those times would already put him on the Tigers’ all-time top-10 list.

Byron Sanborn from Palo Alto (and the famed PASA team and Palo Alto High) is very similar to D’Alessandro in his skill-set. He brings another 55.2 in the 100 breaststroke, a sub-two minute 200 breast, and a 1:47 in the 200 IM. He is less likely to end up as a free-relay anchor than D’Alessandro is (he has a 45.6 best in the 100), but  is still an outstanding prospect.

Aside from D’Alessandro, the other swimmer who is on the verge of legitimate national-level relevance is Marco Bove, an Italian National who trains with the Mission Viejo Nadadores. He’s a three-time Italian Junior National Champion in the 200 fly, with a best of 2:01.93 in long course. He doesn’t have much in the way of yards results, but that time ranks him in the elite group of the class of 2012. He’s also got a 2:05.0 in long course in the 200 IM.

Brooks Powell will bring another big relay piece to town; out of Kingwood Park High School in Houston, he’s the three-time defending Texas 4A State Champion in the 50 free, with a best of 20.28. Given that he’s also been a 49.3 in the 100 fly, his 45,5 best in the 100 free has to be short of his full potential.

Jeremy Wong is a native of Hong Kong, but swam in high school for the nearby Peddie School, and will be another big relay piece with a 44.75 best in the 100. Sandy Bole, a French national training in California, has a 1:39 200 free. En-Wei Hu-Van Wright from Asphalt Green has a 1:47 in the 200 back. Zach Ridout could be the gem of the class as a Mission Viejo distance swimmer. He hasn’t had huge results yet (15:51 in the 1650 free, 4:30 in the 500 free).

In summary, this class is stacked. They have at least half-a-dozen State Champions. At least 6 guys who go 45-mid’s or better in the 100 free. It’s a balanced class, with at least one of everything. When this group is added to the young team returning, the Tigers look like they could start to challenge the big-conference teams for top 20 spots at NCAA’s in the next two-to-three years. This group of freshman will join next year’s sophomores including Harrison Wagner who already went a 19.6 in the 50 free, and Michael Strand, who already has a 47.6 in the 100 fly.

A full summary of the team’s star recruits is below:

Sandy Bole
North Bay Aquatics
(Grennbrae, CA/France)
Top Times
50 free: 21.14 (LCM 24.06)
100 free: 45.30 (LCM 51.98)
200 free: 1:39.54 (LCM 1:52.95)
100 fly: 50.75 (LCM 56.88)
200 IM: 1:51.60.

Before Princeton – qualified for Junior Nationals multiple times … competed at French Nationals … three-time league champion in 200 IM, and also won 100 breast and 100 free … holds Redwood High records in 100 free, 200 free, 200 IM and multiple relays … also holds multiple club records … holds multiple French Olympic Trials cuts, and close to U.S. Trial cut in 200 free … two-time French National Junior Team member … Academic All-America.

Marco Bove
Mission Viejo/Forum Sports Center
(Rome, Italy)
Top Times
100 fly: 55.77 LCM/ (SCM 54.14)
200 fly: 2:01.93 LCM/ (SCM 1:58.27)
200 IM: 2:05.07 LCM/ ( SCM 2:02.73)
400 IM: 4:30.02 LCM/ (SCM 4:26.60)
200 FR: 1:53.92 (LCM)

Before Princeton – three-time Italian Junior National champion in the 200 fly … earned one silver and one bronze in 100 fly and one silver in 200 IM … reached ‘A’ finals at Italian Senior Nationals … Would hold three US Olympic Trials cuts in 200 fly, 200 IM and 400 IM … competed in U.S. Junior Nationals.

Teo D’Alessandro
Bolles School
Jacksonville, FL
Top Times
50 free: 20.67
100 free: 45.09
200 free: 1:38.63 (LCM 1:52.76)
200 IM: 1:47.20 (LCM 2:06.38)
400 IM: 3:53.93 (LCM 4:29.75)
100 breast: 55.95
200 breast: 2:03.49
100 fly: 50.09

Before Princeton – placed third in both the 100 breast and the 200 IM at Junior Nationals … led Bolles High to two team state championships and won four individual state titles, including 200 IM and three relays … 2010-11 NISCA All-America honoree … USA Swimming All-America … served as team captain … member of four relays that broke either national or meet records at Junior Nationals … three-time Scholastic All-America … four-time selection to the President Honor Roll.

En-Wei Hu-Van Wright
New York, New York
Top Times
100 free: 45.41
100 back: 49.23
200 back: 1:47.29 (LCM 2:03.83)
200 IM: 1:49.70
100 fly: 49.97

Before Princeton – qualified for both Senior Nationals and Junior Nationals … has Olympic Trial cut in 100 back … A-finalist at the 2011 long course Junior Nationals … 100 back champion at New York state championships … holds nine records at Stuyvesant, as well as five league records and 18 club records … three-time Scholastic All-America … 2012 Wingate Award winner … member of the Physics Bridge Building Club.

Jack Pohlmann
Dayton Raiders
Beavercreek, Ohio
Top Times
100 breast: 55.27 (LCM 1:04.34)
200 breast: 2:00.15

Before Princeton – Olympic Trials qualifier in the 100 breast … won the 2012 Ohio state championship in the 100 breast and 200 medley relay; named Division 1 State Performer of the Meet … 2012 Midwest Zone sectional champion in the 100 breast … holds Beavercreek High records in 50 free, 100 breast and 200 medley relay; holds five club records … competed with the NCSA Junior National Team representing the USA in Osaka, Japan (2011) … team captain and team MVP … Academic All-America … National Honor Society Chapter President.

Brooks Powell
Kingwood Park High School
Kingwood, Texas
Top Times
50 free: 20.28
100 free: 45.53
50 back: 23.0
100 fly: 49.3

Before Princeton – has won eight Texas 4A state gold medals; three came in the 50 free, one in the 100 fly and four in relays … holds 12 All-America cuts … set Kingwood Park High records in the 50 free, 100 free and 100 fly … two-time team captain … National Honor Society president.

Zach Ridout
Mission Viejo
Mission Viejo, CA
Top Times
500 free: 4:30.68
1000 free: 9:24.40 (LCM: 8:12.69)
1650 free: 15:51.6 (15:46.60)

Before Princeton – competed at both Senior and Junior Nationals … qualified for the Olympic Trials in the 1500 free … placed fourth at Summer Junior Nationals in the 800 and 11th in the 1500 free … led Capistrano Valley to three CIF titles and one runner-up, as well as one state championship … three-time Scholastic All-America.

Byron Sanborn
Palo Alto, CA
Top Times
100 breast: 55.29
200 breast: 1:59.70 (2:20.73)
200 IM: 1:47.49
400 IM: 3:57.25
50 free: 21.10
100 free: 45.63.

Before Princeton – invited both Senior Nationals and Zone Select Camp … CCS high school champion in 100 breast; holds CCS record in event (55.29) … holds Olympic Trial cut in 200 breast … competed in FINA World Cup stops in Berlin, Moscow and Singapore … two-year captain of Palo Alto High; also served as club team captain … two-time Academic All-America … earned Math and Social Studies departmental awards.

Jeremy Wong
Peddie School
Hong Kong, China
Top Times
50 free: 21.01
100 free: 44.75
200 free: 1:40.42.

Before Princeton – earned Excellent Swimmer honor in 2010 and 2011 fir Hoi Tin Swimming Club … competed in the AASF Asian Age Group Championships and the Malaysia Open … holds multiple NISCA records.

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9 years ago

The princeton swimmers to really watch are connor mahr (sp?)and conner jager. jager dropped massive amounts this year at HYP meet and mahr didnt swim ivy meet but swam great being tired the whole year. expect him to be biggest contributor. also strand is backstroke (ncaa 47.0) but switched to fly to fill void (20.6 fly fill in…). incoming class is unbelievably deep but some of them need to step up and become all-stars. my pick is en-wei hu van wright. i just love the name. harvard has an impressive class too – we will see how they take shape once on campus. i also wonder how both H and P get so many top level swimmers in through admissions… Read more »

Reply to  kevin
9 years ago

Check this out and you’ll find part of the answer:
I believe the working rule for swimmers is a bit higher and obviously it varies from the elite two (H and P) and the other six.
Re financial aid…there have been many articles on how Harvard and Princeton can almost compete with scholarship schools with aid….especially since so few swimmers can “full rides”….this is one of the reasons that the depth of quality swimming is fast improving in the Ivy Leagues and half the league at least one representative at NCAAs.

Reply to  newswim
9 years ago

Sorry for the typos…Brown, Harvard, Princeton and Penn sent swimmers to NCAAs. Depth refers to the times required to make finals which has improved greatly over the past few years.
Great education, good swimming and generous aid packages are big draws for swimmers who are accomplished in the pool and in the classroom.

Reply to  kevin
9 years ago

d’alessandro just went 1:59.9 in the 200 breast and 48.6 in the 100 fly at a bolles meet this week. and he’s really not a breaststroker! or flyer!

Reply to  Braden Keith
9 years ago

they had time trials in yards

Reply to  coach t
7 years ago

But will d’alessandro be able to keep up with the Tigers’ new star, Andrew Helber, in the backstroke events??? Rumor has it Helber has been training all summer to make his NCAA cut at Princeton’s scrimmage against FAU this October.

9 years ago

Princeton lost about 250 points to graduation. The new kids will really have to step up to retain the Ivy title. Go Tigers!

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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