Chung lost his match 6-3, 6-0, at number-three singles and junior Chris Laitala fell to his sixth-singles opponent 6-4, 6-4.
The deciding fourth point was played out at fifth singles as Kim, after dropping the first set 5-7, came back to take the second set 7-5. Kim's opponent bore down on the Harvard sophomore in the third set, however, and squeezed out a 6-4 win to secure the victory for the Lions.
The loss did not leave the Crimson shattered as one might expect when the EITA Champions for the last five years falls to a conference team.
Team members looked forward instead to up-coming matches and the ECAC tournament from where Harvard has a good chance to earn an invitation to the 20-team NCAA tournament.
"All we can ask for is to get to the EITA tournament with everyone healthy," Rueb said. "Hopefully from there we'll be able to battle into the NCAA's."
"The loss won't affect us that much," Arnold said. "We had two players missing, and I think we could have beaten them with everyone playing."
Still, the Crimson was not offering any excuses for its loss on Saturday.
It maybe could have, though: there had been some concern that Columbia had "stacked" its line-up, playing two singles players below their usual positions.
"Their number-four singles player had never been in their line-up before," Arnold said. "That was kind of questionable, but it's nothing you can prove. Plus, we had a chance to win on the court but we couldn't pull it out."
"We're all really disappointed but I think individually we're all playing better and moving in the right direction with our games," Rueb said. "Everyone's adding things to their games and taking more risks on the court and that's important at the NCAA tournament level."
While the ECACs and NCAAs are certainly within the Crimson's grasp it must focus on its remaining regular-season matches--including two this weekend at home against Navy and Princeton.
How quickly the Crimson can get back on track will be as much a test of the its mettle as was the Columbia squad it was defeated by on Saturday.