March 4, 2002

M. Swimming Places Sixth

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The men’s swimming and diving team closed out its season this weekend at the EISL Championships, placing sixth with 630.5 points. The Red had a fantastic meet, finishing two places higher than last year and scoring 105 more points. Princeton took first with 1,522 points, edging host team Harvard.

In such a challenging league, the Red often uses itself a yardstick, measuring races in terms of the Cornell record books. In this category, the team soared with 11 new top-five finishes.

Two standouts for the meet were senior co-captain Eric Gonzalez and junior Danny Royce. Both swimmers swam their personal bests in notching three top-five swims.

Gonzalez dominated the distance free events. He placed 13th in the 1000 and 1650 freestyle and 19th in the 500 free. Royce had Cornell’s top finish, scoring fourth in the 200 breaststroke with a time of 2:04.43, as well as placing 12th in the 400 IM and 15th in the 200 IM.

“It was a tremendous meet. Throughout the three-day meet the team handled themselves with the good and the bad. They kept fighting through the whole meet. It was my fastest Easterns ever,” head coach Joe Lucia lauded.

Out of 49 individual swims, 27 were lifetime-best times, and another 13 were solid swims right at best times.

Four other swimmers made it on the all-time list. Junior Forrest Kennedy’s 200 fly time of 1:50.95 placed 11th. Sophomore John Dyste’s 200 breast time of 2:04.74 earned him sixth place, one of three top-eight finishes.

Freshman Scott Paavola’s 17th place finish in the 500 free and Danny Diette’s ninth place finish in the 200 back both made the cut.

Senior John Kenny had a solid meet, placing a team-high 10th in the 1650 free, 14th in the 1000 free, and 23rd in the 500 free. Classmate Ryan Buckham placed 11th in the 100 back, with Diette right behind him in 12th.

The 200 free relay also made the top-five list, with the team of juniors Charlie Ernst, Julian King, Jeremy Sample, and freshman Paul Teta finishing seventh with a time of 1:23.29.

Other highlights for the Red were King’s 50 free time of 21.03 and Charlie Ernst’s three lifetime-best swims in the 50 free, 100 back, and on the 200 medley relay. Sample also had three lifetime-best swims.

Freshman diver Tony Schultz showed great poise at his first Championships. He placed fifth on the one-meter board and ninth on the three-meter board.

“It was really fun. The team showed a lot of poise and class. I am extremely proud of these guys. It was a strong finish to the season,” Lucia added.

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