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Crescenta Valley High boys' swimming concentrated on another championship

Led by standout seniors, Falcons determined to win another CIF Southern Section Division II title in 2013.

March 02, 2013|By Andrew Shortall, andrew.shortall@latimes.com
  • ARCHIVE PHOTO: Crescenta Valley High's Young Tae Seo and the Falcons are intent on repeating in CIF Southern Section Division II.
ARCHIVE PHOTO: Crescenta Valley High's Young Tae… (Raul Roa/Staff…)

It will be hard to top last year’s dramatic conclusion, as the Crescenta Valley High boys’ swimming team just edged Damien, 301-293, for the CIF Southern Section Division II title in the last race of the meet.

The Falcons will look to match it and maybe even save some of the drama, though that’s easier said than done.

“Well, it's not a surprise to anyone the talent that we have on this roster,” Falcons Coach Jan Sakonju said of how last season will impact 2013. “We were the CIF champions last year, obviously, there are teams focused on beating us because they want to win CIF this year.”

Before CV has another shot at CIF it will have to take care of business in the Pacific League. The Falcons, who were 6-0 in league last year, are in line to win their 21st consecutive league title and 30th in program history with standouts Young Tae Seo and Harrison Thai returning for their final high school campaigns.

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“I don't think there's any program here, not only in Crescenta Valley, but any school that matches that,” Sakonju said of his team’s dominance in league. “We always talk about legacy, passing the torch, maintaining tradition and that league championship and that streak is something that we look to continue every year. …There’s an amount of pride in maintaining that.”

Seo, the reining Division II champion in the 500-yard freestyle and 100 breaststroke, and Thai, last year’s 200 individual medley and 100 backstroke champion, won’t be able to deliver a second CIF championship on their own.

The Falcons will rely on sophomore Edward Yi (100 butterfly, 500 free, relays) and seniors Jake Ksendov (100 breaststroke, 50 free) and Parker Griffin (100 butterfly, 500 free) to hopefully score some big points in CIF and throughout the season. Seniors Antonio Camarillo, Andrew Lockwood and Stephen Woo will also be members of CV’s relay teams.

“To win CIF it has to be a team effort,” Sakonju said. “We have to get guys that aren’t going to win their event, but if they can just place and get a point here and point there.”

Flintridge Prep is gearing up for another run at a Prep League title after it slipped from second to third late in the 2012 league championship meet.

Rebels Coach Ryan Goto is very optimistic about this year, as he returns most of his lineup with some improving and a new impact swimmer in the mix.

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