Men's Swimming Finishes Fourth as ECAC Host
In what would be the final meet for some Harvard seniors, a partial squad of the men’s swimming and diving team finished fourth at the ECAC Championships this past weekend at Blodgett Pool.
With some members of the team not competing because of the Ivy League Championships taking place next weekend, the Crimson finished fourth out of a field of 19 total teams.
“We were more interested in our performance as a group of Harvard guys, rather than to the other teams competing,” co-captain Owen Wurzbacher said. “Given that it wasn’t our full team, we were really happy with the fourth-place finish.”
Harvard won the 200-medley relay with strong swims by junior Jack Pretto on backstroke, Wurzbacher on breaststroke, senior Ryan Cutter on butterfly, and junior Will Brophy as the freestyle anchor.
“[The four of us] were pretty excited about that race,” Brophy said. “We knew we had the guys on it to do really well and to potentially win it. When it came down to it in the finals we just stepped up.”
For seniors Wurzbacher and Cutter, the win came in the last meet of their Harvard swimming careers.
“Jack and I we really wanted to get that win for the two seniors on the relay because they have put a ton of time and effort into our team,” Brophy said. “[Jack and I] knew that relay was just really big for the seniors…and it was amazing to do it for those two because they have worked really hard and deserved it.”
The 200-medley win was only a small portion of the weekend for Pretto and Brophy. The two juniors both swam in five total finals: three relays and two individual races, which amounts to 14 total swims over the three days for each of them.
“I wasn’t feeling great the whole way, my legs were getting tired and I was starting to have trouble with my breathing,” Brophy said. “I just tried to keep the team in mind, and I had the mentality of just doing whatever the team needed me to do this weekend.”
Brophy took home second place in the 50 freestyle, and Pretto took third in the 100-meter backstroke.
“Jack had great swims all weekend, and Brophy was really impressive, particularly in some of the relays,” Wurzbacher said. “[Pretto and Brophy] performed well across the board and really led the team.”
Freshman Robert Doles also had a standout weekend, winning the 400 individual medley and taking fourth in the 200 individual medley.
“We also had some great swims from some of our younger guys,” Wurzbacher said. “We had a lot of our freshman in there this weekend. Evan Zheng stepped up and swam on the A-relay the other night, and Robert Doles swam really well in his individual events and the medley event.”
Sophomore George Doran placed second in the three-meter dive, while sophomore Reed Snyder placed third in the 500 freestyle.
“It was a really wonderful evening and great overall weekend,” Wurzbacher said. “Just to have all our teammates here supporting us was amazing.”