One of the best swimmers in Princeton's history, Joe Loughran, is the odds-on favorite to win both the 500-yard and 1650-yard freestyle races. Last year at the Easterns, he took both events easily and has recorded among the best times in the country this year at those distances. Look for him to be two sure wins for the Tigers.
Essick: "Joe Loughran is definitely the class of the field."
Paco Canales is Harvard's premier distance freestyler. He does not appear to be a threat to Princeton's Joe Loughran, but if Canales is swimming well (which he has been lately), he could be in a position to nab a second or third in the 500- and 1650-yard free. Canales seems to be in top form--he swam close to his lifetime best against Yale without shaving last Saturday--so look for him to do very well.
Essick: "Paco looks great."
Dave English is the Crimson's chief hope in the diving events. English injured his shoulder three weeks ago, but it appears to have recovered. He dove well, if not spectacularly, to win both the one- and three-meter diving events at Yale last weekend. Look for English to be a factor in the meet.
Essick: "I think you have to consider Dave a contender for both titles."
Princeton's Tom Wood could be one of the keys to the Easterns. Wood, who has been ill in the past couple of weeks, could be a factor in the 200 butterfly and 200 freestyle as well as swimming in the Tiger's excellent 400 and 800 yard freestyle relays.
Harvard assistant coach Peter Orschiedt: "I consider Wood's performance and how well Princeton does in the 500 free the first day as critical to the meet. If Wood has recovered, it could be trouble."
Duncan Pyle is another Crimson swimmer who appears to be peaking just in time for the Easterns. Against Yale last week, he swam his season's best in the 200 backstroke and 200 individual medley--two of the events he will swim in the Easterns.
Essick: "Duncan did very well last weekend and is right on schedule. Look out for him at the Easterns."