While the majority of the Cornell student body was home resting up for second semester, the men’s swimming and diving team was spending a considerable amount of time in the pool. Unfortunately for the Red, the pool happened to be located in cold and stormy Aruba. During what is its most rigorous stretch of training of the season, the Red has been working extremely hard to stay in shape.
“We were in Aruba for about 11 days over Christmas break and that is an intense training period for us,” said senior co-captain Jeremy Sample. “We have continued that training over the last two weeks.”
The physically demanding training session along with the grueling travel schedule has worn out many of the Red’s swimmers. On Jan. 9 and 10, the team faced off against EISL foes Navy and Yale. While Cornell edged out Navy by a score of 122.5 to 120.5, it fell to Yale 136.5 to 104.5.
“It is difficult to swim our best when we are training that hard,” said Sample. “We have been really broken down. We didn’t swim up to our potential against Navy and Yale.”
During the meet, Cornell captured four first place finishes with senior co-captain Danny Royce leading the way with a victory in the 200-yard backstroke. Freshman Mike Smit has also been a consistent force for the Red, as he took home first place finishes in the 1000 and 500-yard freestyle events.
“Mike Smit has just been unbelievable,” said Sample. “He has been swimming incredibly well considering the training he has gone through.”
Smit followed up his performance against Yale and Navy with another strong one against Army, taking home the crown in the 500-yard freestyle event. The Red won seven more events, as it rolled past the Black Knights last Saturday by a score of 146 to 93, improving its record to 4-2. It also captured its second win of the inter session, leaving Royce pleased with the team’s effort.
“We have been swimming really well,” said Royce. “I have been really proud of how we have been doing.”
The Red will continue its schedule in Hamilton, N.Y. this Saturday as it battles Colgate.
The women’s swimming and diving team also enjoyed a similar training period in Aruba over Christmas break.
“We really gelled as a team and got in some excellent training sessions in Aruba,” said senior co-captain Jayme Majek.
The training came in preparation for meets against Ivy League rival Yale and Army. In its meet against Yale, the Red has several standout performances, as the team finished with seven first place finishes. However, it was not enough to defeat the Bulldogs, as the Red fell, 166-31. Alyson Melin and Jessica Brookman each took home three first-place finishes, while Lisa Ranzenhofer snagged two.
Looking to rebound from its loss at the hands of Yale, the team faced off against Army at Crandall Pool last Saturday. By a narrow margin, the Red held off the Black Knights by a score of 155-145. The match was as competitive as the score indicated, with Cornell having to win five of the last seven events to complete the victory. Overall, the Red took home 10 of 16 first-place finishes.
“The team performed well against Yale and Army and we pulled out a win against Army that we were really proud of,” said Majek.
With the win, the Red improved its record to 2-6 on the season, beating an Army team that slipped to 3-5. The win can be attributed to outstanding performances by Jayme Majek, Alyson Melin, and Kristin Rayhack, as each were multi-event winners for Cornell.
The Red will look to capture its third win of the season when it meets Colgate on Saturday.
Archived article by Bryan Pepper