Yale Athletics

This past weekend, Yale Swim and Dive competed in the Harvard-Yale-Princeton meet at Harvard University’s Blodgett Pool. The women’s squad took first, finishing out an undefeated year in the pool.

The women’s team has swept their two rivals at HYP in six of the last seven years. This year’s victories were also significant as they closed out the team’s second consecutive undefeated run through Ivy League competition. The men also carried out several impressive individual performances.

“It’s been amazing seeing all of our hard work pay off in what turned into an undefeated season for the second year in a row,” Hayden Henderson ’25 of the women’s dive team said.

While the Bulldogs breezed past the Harvard women by a score of 210–90, Princeton University proved to be much stiffer competition. While the Tigers led the Bulldogs by one point heading into the second day of the meet, the Blue and White prevailed by an 11-point margin.

Meanwhile, while the men did not necessarily have the same team performance, several individuals recorded impressive finishes.

“This time of the year is everyone’s favorite, because as we head into championship season we get to taper off our training: meaning the volume and intensity comes down and we increase our rest to prepare for optimal performance,” Noah Millard ’25 said. “The light at the end of the dark tunnel of winter training is here, and the vibes are great because people are sleeping more and training is easier! It’s also super exciting because we get to show off what we have been working for since the start of the season.”

Millard started HYP off in strong form, winning the 200 freestyle with a time of 1:34.38, as well as winning the 400 individual medley in 3:48.94. In the subsequent days of the meet, Millard added to his HYP triumphs by dominating the 500 freestyle with a time of 4:19.28.

Last year’s HYP at Yale’s Kiphuth Pool saw Millard finish second in the 200 freestyle, almost an entire second slower than his time this year. The Australian native won the 500 freestyle last year as well. 

“Although we are aiming to peak at the upcoming championship meets of Ivy Champs and ECAC’s, this meet was a great stepping stone and sign of what is to come,” he said. According to Millard, the men’s team treated this as “a normal ‘dual meet,’” getting in some more practice within a high pressure environment against two other high-level teams.

In the end, however, the men’s squad fell to Princeton and Harvard (231–122), with Harvard beating the Tigers 181–172. 

Many other Bulldogs also placed well this past weekend. Joseph Page ’23 and Alex Deng ’25 placed second in the 100 freestyle and 200 breaststroke. Both Page and Deng placed in the top three at last year’s HYP as well.  

On the diving side, Aidan Thomas ’25 stood on the podium in third place in the men’s 3-meter dive among a “very competitive group of divers,” he told the News. He said that the team could have performed better at this meet but that one of the biggest positives was that they did better at this year’s HYP than last year’s, which “definitely raised the morale of the team.”

“We all understand that this is the final push, so in the next few weeks, I think everyone is just focused on making the most out of every practice and working to improve the minute details in our craft that will make the biggest differences come Ivies,” he said. 

Other divers, such as Jean Paul Ditto ’24, also had some success, finishing in sixth place twice. The women also did very well this past weekend, with first-years Paige Lai ’26 and Lily Horenkamp ’26 winning the 3-meter event and earning second-place at the close-call 1-meter event, respectively.

Ray Wipfli ’25 says the pressure of the event got to some of the team members, including himself. 

“I personally felt like I underperformed, potentially as a result of this meet’s higher stakes,” he said. 

However, he believes that the entire team has the potential to perform much better at the Ivies coming up in 3 weeks.  

According to Wipfli, “how we capitalize on the next 3 weeks of training will determine the outcome at Ivies, so we are all doing our best to outwork the competition.” He said it is good to measure where the team currently stands scores-wise before moving into the season’s final stretch before championship events. 

The teams will have three weeks of intense training before facing all of the Ivies at the Ivy League Championships in Providence, RI, at the end of February. 

Paloma Vigil is the Arts Editor for the Yale Daily News. She previously served as a DEI co-chair and staff reporter for the University and Sports desks. Past coverage includes religious life, Yale College Council, sailing and gymnastics. Originally from Miami, she is a junior in Pauli Murray College majoring in Psychology and Political Science.