A year ago Sunday (Jan. 29, 2011), the UR men’s swimming and diving team needed a Michael Phelps-esque, win-by-a-finger performance on the part of now-sophomore Alex King to win the 200 freestyle relay and clinch a 151-149 decision over the Yellowjackets’ heated rivals, the RIT Tigers, at the yellow and blue’s own pool complex.
What a difference one year can make.
In a demonstration of just how tremendous a roster overhaul the men’s squad has born witness to this season — the product of a dazzling freshman class and the always devoted leadership and work ethic of the team’s veterans — the Yellowjackets embarrassed RIT at its own facility, 173.50-119.50.
Freshmen Pat Davis and James Frauen dominated their respective strokes, as each won two events for the ’Jackets. Davis took the 100 (1:01.77) and 200 (2:20.70) breaststrokes and Frauen the 100 (54.21) and 200 (1:59.33) backstrokes. Davis was also part of the winning 200 medley relay (1:38.50), teaming with King and freshmen Russell Rosenkranz and Brian Wong.
Six other men won individual events for the Yellowjackets, four of which were freestyle races: freshman Booky Porapakkham nabbed the 100 freestyle (47.73); freshman Chris Doser was first to the wall in the 200 free (1:46.85); junior Christian Vu claimed the 500 free (5:03.33) and sophomore Monte Jiran capped off the day with a 1000 free victory (10:28.87). Freshman Derek Lam took top honors in the 100 fly (52.31), as did Wong in the 200 fly (1:57.54).
With a victory already in hand, UR elected not to enter a competitive relay team in the 200 freestyle relay, throwing in an exhibition squad that didn’t count for points, but it didn’t matter. With King once again at the helm (and with the freshmen trio of Porapakkham, Doser and Davis swimming with him) the Yellowjackets put the finishing touches on the victory by posting a faster time than the RIT opposition.
The UR women were even more dominant, trouncing the Tigers, 191-103.
Freshman Meg Waring headlined the Yellowjackets’ effort by claiming a remarkable three individual wins: the 200 free (1:58.74), the 100 free (54.96) and the 500 free (5:15.96). Waring also swam on the winning 200 medley relay (1:54.15) team along with sophomore Karen Meess and freshmen Lauren Bailey and Ellie Ansani.
Freshman Teresa Xu teamed with Waring to complete a sweep of the freestyle events, taking first in the 1000 free (11:03.19). Xu showcased her great versatility by adding a first in the 200 backstroke (2:16.24). Meess took first in the 100 backstroke (1:02.57).
Bailey and senior Bridget Festa swept their respective strokes to complete the strong female swim showing. Bailey, a fly specialist, took first in the 100 (59.33) and 200 (2:14.95) fly, while Festa was first to the wall in the 100 (1:14.31) and 200 (2:40.08) breaststroke.
On the boards, junior Sara Spielman posted the best score on the 3-meter (228.60) and was second on the 1-meter (203.80).
Both the men and women have a couple of weeks off before taking part in a true test: the ever-competitive University Athletic Association championship.
Bernstein is a member of the class of 2014.