Season Preview: Swimming looking to make CIF playoffs for second straight year

Assoc. Sports Editor
Photo by Thomas Forman

The South Pasadena High School swim team is looking to improve upon its previous season with another prominent CIF run. This will be the team’s second year in CIF Division II as opposed to the challenging CIF Division I that they competed in in previous years.

The team’s biggest obstacles this season will be facing off against La Cañada on Thursday, April 14 and San Marino on Thursday, April 21. South Pas will hope to emulate its success from the previous season as the Tigers defeated both schools to maintain a strong Rio Hondo regular season run. However, this season, the Tigers will be the underdogs due to the crucial losses of many talented swimmers.

South Pas will have to compete without the aid of many athletes who graduated last Spring. Garret Tse, William Jo, and Sabrina Zavala all contributed greatly to the team in the postseason and accounted for three of the five swimmers who went to the CIF state championships. Along with their swimming abilities, the athletes’ leadership was lost.

“The team has high hopes for this season, even when we face tough schools.” junior Kelsey Sedgwick said, “Even though we lost some very talented swimmers, we have many people eager to fill their shoes.”

Key athletes still remain, including seniors Aaron Ogita, Harry Kim, Laura Mendenhall, and Jocelyn Jo, and junior Jacob Mullin. These swimmers will spearhead the charge to preserve the South Pas undefeated league record.

“There is a lot of new faces and we are all very excited about the new season.” junior Kevin Shon said, “With this talent and energy, the team hopes to improve upon last season with stronger individual and team performances.”

This season, the team has revamped with three new coaches: Ivan Serrano, Mike Lucero, and Taryn Albright. They have implemented several new exercises to overcome setbacks due to player losses and maximize production from new additions.

The team is motivated as opportunity to fill in the gap during competitions has made underclassmen more determined. Everyone is fighting for the team and the possibility of individual success. The coaching staff has put great emphasis on dryland exercising, with the hopes that swimmer’s will have greater endurances in the water.

Look for the swim team to continue the success apparent in previous years. Despite the loss of key swimmers, there is still an abundance of young talent among the team.