Breaking three University records and placing one individual and one relay in consolation finals, the Harvard swimming team got off to an auspicious start yesterday on the first of three days of competition at the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships at Knoxville, Tenn.
The Crimson's first-day total of five points was three more than the team managed at last year's meet at West Point, and it put Harvard in 16th place in the standings. Pre-meet favorite Indiana holds a comfortable lead over second-place Southern California. The Hoosiers, closing in on a sixth consecutive national title, piled up 107 points to SC's 81 and host Tennessee's 74.
Harvard had a disappointing start in the afternoon qualifying heats as both captain Fred Mitchell and Rich Baughman swam slightly off their best times in the trials of the 500-yd. freestyle and were not remotely close to qualifying. John Kinsella of Indiana took the event for the third straight time, holding off a late challenge by Jack Tingley of SC to win in 4:26.321.
But the Crimson rebounded in the next event, the 200-yd. individual medley, as Hess Yntema recaptured the Harvard record in the event with an excellent 1:56.37 clocking. Teammate and former record-holder Dave Brumwell swam off his best time and finished in 1:58.34.
Both, however, failed to qualify, and the evening final was won by Steve Furniss of Southern California in a new American and NCAA record time of 1:51.385. Second was defending titlist Gary Hall of Indiana.
Tim Neville became the first Harvard swimmer to reach the consolation finals in the meet as he recorded a 21.237 clocking in the heats of the 50-yd. freestyle to qualify 11th in the event. In the evening consolations, Neville lowered his own University record to 21.197 and moved up a notch to finish in tenth place overall, good for three points.
In the championship finals of the 50-yd. freestyle, pre-meet favorite John Trembley of Tennessee kept Dave Edgar's sprint title in Knoxville for the fourth straight year as he won the race in a fast 20.337 to the delight of the hometown crowd. Rex Hand of Navy, who beat Neville to take first in the event at the Easterns, finished sixth in 21.196, just one-thousandth of a second better than Neville's tenth-place time.
Larry More of Cornell failed to defend his 1-meter diving crown, finishing second, as ironically the Big Red diver was beaten by Tim Moore of Ohio State.
The heralded Princeton divers failed to perform up to expectations and were shut out in the competition. The Eastern champion Tigers finished the day without scoring a single point.
In the qualifying heats of the 400-yd. medley relay the team of Tom Wolf, Dave Brumwell, Hess Yntema and Tim Neville qualified a surprising 12th and in the process chopped two seconds off the Harvard record established at the Easterns, swimming the distance in a very fast 3:31.02.
All four men turned in fast splits, as Wolfe swam 54.48 in his backstroke leg, Brumwell turned in a very good 1:00.2 in the breast stroke, Yntema was clocked in 50.06 in the butterfly and Neville anchored in a fast 46.28.
The contingent swam cautiously in the consolation finals, finishing 12th in 3:33.517, to complete Harvard's scoring for the day.