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February 28, 2014

Harvard Maintains Leads Heading into Final Day at Men's Swimming and Diving Championships

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CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Thanks in part to a pair of strong swims by senior Chris Satterthwaite, Harvard lengthened its lead to 82 points Friday night at the Ivy League Men's Swimming and Diving Championships. 

Following a night with several thrilling races and a raucous crowd at Blodgett Pool, the Crimson have 1,011 points to lead the meet. Princeton, the five-time defending champion, is second with 929 points, followed by Penn (723), Columbia (652.5), Yale (632), Dartmouth (477), Brown (474.5) and Cornell (377). 

Satterwaithe won the 200 freestyle for the third-consecutive year and then swam a strong anchor leg to give the Crimson the 800 freestyle relay to close out the night. 

Princeton opened the night with a win in the 200 medley relay. In a thrilling race that saw the top three teams finish just .28 seconds apart from each other, Princeton edged Penn for the win. The Tigers touched the wall in 1:27.16, just ahead of the Quakers' mark of 1:27.33. Harvard was third at 1:27.44. 

Another thriller followed in the fast heat of the 1,000 freestyle. Yale's Brian Hogan edged Penn's Chris Swanson by .14 for the win, setting an Ivy League Championship meet record in the process. Hogan touched the wall in 8:52.88, breaking Paul Nolle's record from 2012 by nearly two full seconds. Swanson swam the final 25 yards in 24.49, but it wasn't quite enough to overcome Hogan.   

In the 400 IM, Princeton's Samuel Smiddy touched up in 3:47.33 to claim the win. The Tigers grabbed first, fourth and fifth place to chip away a little at Harvard's lead, which had been 122 points entering that race. 

In the 100 butterfly, Brown's Tommy Glenn won his third consecutive Ivy League title, touching up in 46.13. 

With a 97-point lead heading into the 200 freestyle, Harvard was bound to increase that lead. The Crimson had five swimmers in the final to guarantee them a big haul on points. The Crimson went 1-2 with Satterthwaite and Aly Abdel Khalik. Winning his third straight Ivy League title in the event, Satterthwaite touched up in 1:35.73. Princeton's Sandy Bole came on late to finish third at 1:36.61, nearly catching Abdel Khalik at the wall with a final 25 yards in 24.36. However, by going 1-2-5-6-7 in the 200 freestyle, Harvard's lead nearly doubled to 169 points. 

In the 100 breaststroke, Dartmouth's Nejc Zupan touched first in 53.52 to grab the win. It was his first Ivy League title in that event and the sixth individual title of his career over five different events. Zupan had broken a 34-year-old pool record in the morning session and bettered it in the evening. 

In the 100 backstroke, Michael Strand led three Tigers in the finals with a time of 46.80 to earn an Ivy League individual title. Strand broke a 25-year-old pool record earlier in the day during preliminaries and bettered it on Friday night while helping to chip into Harvard's lead again.  

Harvard closed out the night, however, breaking a 34-year-old pool record in the 800 freestyle relay. The Crimson completed the relay in 6:25.84, nearly two seconds better than second-place Princeton. Satterwaithe pulled away in the final leg of the relay, outdueling Bole with a final 200 of 1:34.64, better than his winning 200 time earlier in the night.

Action resumes Saturday at 11 a.m. with preliminary heats. The Ivy League® Digital Network will have live wire-to-wire coverage of all of the day's action. 

TEAM SCORING
1. Harvard
1,011
2. Princeton
929
3. Penn
723
4. Columbia
652.5
5. Yale
632
6. Dartmouth
477
7. Brown
474.5
8.
Cornell
377