The Harvard men's swim team had its mind on other things. Coach Joe Bernal had his mind on other things. But even with everyone thinking about Eastern Seaboard Championships in three weeks, the aquamen pulled the plug on an innocous Cornell squad, 77-35, at Blodgett Pool yesterday, raising their record to 7-0.
Nothing short of divine intervention could have saved the Big Red (1-5 in the Eastern Intercollegiate Swimming League (EISL)) from the mercy killing. Even with the aquamen trying to-qualify for Easterns in events they hadn't yet qualified in. Cornell could only muster two wins in a 16-event expanded meet. Harvard grabbed the other 14 first-place finishes and swept up second spot in seven of those events.
Qualifying was the order of the day, with the meet formal altered to create extra opportunities. With the opening 400 medley relay divided into separate 100 yard heats for each stroke. Julian Bott and Bob Hrabchak won and qualified in the back-stroke, with times of 55.32 and 55.47. Junior Jim Carbone churned in at 59.89 in the breaststroke to make Easterns standards, with Jack Gauthier and Mike Miao taking the butterfly in 50.98 and 52.06.
A 1650 freestyle was substituted for the 1000 and junior co-captain Larry Countryman passed Cornell's John Rudel at the 1200 mark to win the event in 16:02:90.
Countryman, who has yet to recapture the form that look him to the NCAA Championships last spring, said yesterday more pace work in the next few weeks will cure his ailments. "It's just a matter of doing 100s over and over until your body gets used to the proper pace."
In diving, freshman Steve Feyerick took control in the one-meter with a score of 293.40, With top divers Dan Watson and Jeff Mule performing only in exhibition. On the three-meter board. Feyerick fell to Cornell's James Ackerman with scores of 326.90 and 295.75.
Freshman phenom Watson set a new University and Blodgett Pool record on the low board, with a score in exhibition of 355.10.
Co-captain Ted Chappell and Andy Lockman swept an individual medley expanded to 400 yards, both qualifying for the Easterns in 4:06.25 and 4:09.69.
Countryman repeated in the 200 butterfly, passing Cornell's Steve O'Day on the final lap to win the event in 1:58.20.
With two dual meets remaining, the EISL championship sewn up, and a winning streak of 20 meets--the longest in collegiate swimming currently--Bernal is not reluctant to admit he's looking toward Easterns. Tapering has begun for some of the aquamen and he said workouts will be reduced 10-15 percent in the next week.
The team is thinking Easterns as well. "Meets like this with people trying to make cuts get everybody going." Countryman said, adding that "there's no denying that Easterns is in the back of everybody's mind."