From Feb. 18-21, the Kingsmen and Regals swim and dive teams competed in the SCIAC Championships held in La Mirada, California.
With many memorable performances, a highlight came immediately on the first night of the meet. The California Lutheran University men’s 800 free relay not only earned second overall, but also broke a school record and received an NCAA B cut time in the event, according to the CLU Sports website. The relay, made up of Zach Loza, Jonah Hobbs, Jack Acampora and Zach Zamecki, swam a best time of 6:47.17. Loza led off the relay with a split time of 1:40.76, breaking the school’s individual 200 free record.
“I definitely think [the momentum from the first night] played a big role because the relays all set goals to place or break records and we all ended up on the podium, I think that really set the tone and made everyone pumped up for the next day,” Captain Katie Kochalko said.
The next day carried the momentum for Cal Lutheran, as the women’s 200 free relay, made up of Grace Sanchez, Gabby Romaro, Kochalko and Alexia Rojas, broke the school record of 1:38.75 with a new time of 1:38.45, according to the CLU Sports website. The Kingsmen A 200 free relay also scored points for Cal Lutheran, coming in seventh. It continued with Hobbs earning second place in the 500 free with a time of 4:36.20.
Feb. 20 Rojas broke a record in the 100 butterfly with a time of 57.66, earning her third overall in SCIAC, according to the CLU Sports website. The men’s 400 medley relay placed fifth and also broke a Cal Lutheran record, by over two and a half seconds, according to the CLU Sports website.
Over the weekend on the diving board, senior diver Lucas Reddell earned third in the three-meter competition with a score of 355.50, according to the SCIAC website. Reddell competed again in finals on Feb. 20 in the one-meter. Reddell said he felt confident and excited heading into the championship event, which paid off, as his score of 434.75 was good enough to get him a place in the NCAA Division III regionals from Feb. 24-26, according to the CLU Sports website.
Junior Tianna Pasko also dove to score points for the Regals with a score of 346.60. “Overall, [the] dive team did really well, I placed eighth in finals on one meter, shattering my score from prelims by 63 points,” Pasko said. “Swimmers also did really well. Records were broken and podium spots were taken in placing.”
On Feb 21, Hobbs won the 1650 free overall with an NCAA B cut time of 15:58.20, according to the CLU Sports website. Rojas broke her second individual school record in the 200 butterfly with a time of 2:06.38. Rojas’ time also earned her an NCAA B cut.
The men’s 400 free relay team of Loza, Thelen McKinna-Worrell, Acampora and Zamecki also earned a school record and third place overall with a time of 3:04.48, breaking the Cal Lutheran record set last year by over a second, according to the CLU Sports website. Within the relay, leadoff swimmer Loza earned another school record in the 100 free with a new record of 45.73.
“Swimming the very last relay is definitely emotional, but it felt really good to end how we did, breaking relay records and everyone having a great meet,” Kochalko said.
The Kingsmen finished fourth overall at SCIAC and the Regals finished sixth. Later this month, swimmers that earned an NCAA B cut time will be selected to swim in the NCAA Division III championships on March 15-18 in Shanandoah, Texas.
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Published February 24th, 2016