AMHERST, MA – The Amherst College men's swimming and diving team suffered a 172-119 loss to MIT Sunday afternoon at Pratt Pool, marking the Lord Jeffs' first setback of the season. Amherst will travel to take on Springfield College Saturday, Feb. 7, in its final dual meet.
Amherst honored its eight seniors before the meet, but it was first-year Ryan Lichtenfels (McLean, VA) who stole the show by setting a pair of pool records. In the second event of the afternoon, Lichtenfels dominated the 1,000-yard freestyle in 9:34.60, nearly 14 seconds ahead of classmate Tim White (Centerport, NY), who placed second.
The 500 freestyle was equally impressive for Lichtenfels, who broke a 20-year old Pratt Pool record by completing the race in 4:37.58, nearly three seconds better than the previous record to mark an NCAA "B" time. The first-year standout nearly picked up a third win in the 200 individual medley, but he was edged by one one-hundredth of a second in yet another outstanding performance.
White picked up Amherst's only other win in the swimming events when he edged MIT's Tim Stumbaugh in the 200-yard backstroke. In a battle between first-years, White touched the wall in 1:56.53 with Stumbaugh close behind at 1:56.66.
Competing in his 12th dual meet as a Lord Jeff, senior Kai Robinson (Vashon, WA) swept the diving events for the 11th time, as he is a perfect 7-for-7 this season. After his 328.95 won him the 3-meter event, Robinson scored a 310.43 on the 1-meter board in his final event at Pratt Pool.
In addition to Robinson, seven Lord Jeffs took part in their final dual meet at Pratt Pool: Josiah Bethards (Hershey, PA), Alec Goldfield (Palo Alto, CA), C.J. Holmes (Alma, MI), Dan Peterson (Silver Spring, MD), Chris Resler (Madison, NJ), Joe Scala (Pequannock, NJ) and Christian Witzke (Jacksonville, FL).
MIT also set two pool records Sunday afternoon, as junior Jeff Zhou won the 100-yard butterfly in 51.20 to break a six-year-old record before the Engineers' 400-yard freestyle relay team of Zhou, Luke Cummings, Peter Wellings and Laurent Charpentier put in a solid time of 3:09.43. The previous 400 relay record of 3:09.52 was set last year by Amherst.
The Lord Jeffs return to action Saturday, Feb. 7, when they travel to take on Springfield College in the final dual meet of 2009.