Even given the storied history of Peddie swimming, what sets Andy apart is that, probably better than any other swimmer in Peddie history, he rose to triumph over virtually every challenge put in front of him. Time and time gain, a meet came down to Peddie’s needing a gigantic performance from one person to win. And nobody ever stepped up on the blocks with greater success at meeting the challenge than Andy O’Hara.
Already an All-American as a sophomore, Andy burst into prominence as a junior in ‘76 when he became the national prep school record holder in the 200-yard freestyle and runner-up to the American record holder in the 200.
O’Hara led the ‘77 team to Peddie’s first ever Eastern Interscholastic title by winning the 100-yard freestyle for the second straight year and anchoring the record-setting 400-free relay team. He co-captained that team to its number one rank in the nation among secondary schools as noted by Swimming World Magazine. A three-year Senior National Qualifier and three-year All American in 10 events over his schoolboy career, Andy won 7 different state individual and relay titles. For his standout record over his four years at Peddie, the Newark Star Ledger named him one of the Top Ten Swimmers of the Decade (1970’s) in New Jersey.
O’Hara went on to become a two-time All-American at Princeton, where he captained the swimming and diving team, the only two-time captain in the history of Princeton aquatics. Named to both the All-Ivy and All-East teams four times, he won Princeton’s major swimming award each of his four years there. He also became a three-time NCAA Division I qualifier and an Olympic Trials qualifier. As of 2007, he still holds top ten times at Princeton in the 100- and 200-yard freestyle events.
For his outstanding swimming career and equally impressive trait of time and time again being able to shift into a higher gear when it was needed most, we delight in welcoming Andy to the Peddie Sports Hall of Fame.