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Disappointing final chapter for Crescenta Valley High swimming seniors

Swimming: Seo helps win both Falcons titles, each in Division II meet record time, in runner-up finish to Los Osos.

May 11, 2013|By Andrew Shortall, andrew.shortall@latimes.com
  • CV's Young Tae Seo participates in the 200-yard individual medley during the CIF Southern Section Division II swimming finals, which took place at Riverside Community College pool on Saturday. (Cheryl A. Guerrero/Staff photographer)
CV's Young Tae Seo participates in the 200-yard…

RIVERSIDE — There’s little the Crescenta Valley High boys’ swimming team was unable to accomplish during the high school careers of Young Tae Seo and Harrison Thai.

One thing the Falcons and their two standout seniors couldn’t do, however, was go out with a second straight championship on Saturday at the CIF Southern Section Division II meet at Riverside City College.

PHOTOS: CIF Southern Section Division II swimming final

Try as it might, CV couldn’t climb the uphill challenge it was dealt in a deeper Los Osos team that won six events and set three Division II meet records in the process. The Grizzlies racked up 285 points that were enough to hold off the Falcons (234).

“Los Osos positioned themselves very well,” said Crescenta Valley Coach Jan Sakonju, as the Grizzlies carried three more swimmers into championship races than CV, 8-5. “They certainly earned it, they swam so well.”

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Though Thai and Seo were denied repeat championships — as the Falcons won their first title in 12 years last year with a 301-293 win over Damien — they can take comfort in the fact they led the Falcons to team finishes in the top two in each of the last three seasons.

While Seo couldn’t go out celebrating, he still had a historic day with an individual victory and meet record in the 200-yard individual medley and 200-medley relay victory and record, which were the only Falcons boys’ wins on the day. On the girls’ side, Crescenta Valley freshman Heather MacDougall made a phenomenal debut in capturing the 100 freestyle.

Seo took a slight, early lead in the butterfly, before falling behind top-seeded Daniel McArthur (1:49.53) of Lakewood in the backstroke and eventually taking a body-length lead in the breaststroke. His time of one minute, 47.80 seconds updated his Division II meet record.

“That’s what I always try to do, pull from the breaststroke. I am happy breaking the record, but I could have done better, it’s not my best time,” said Seo, whose previous record of 1:48.38 was set in 2011. “I knew he wasn’t a breaststroker, so I knew that’s the only way I could beat him.”

McArthur was runner-up about two seconds behind Seo in 1:49.53 to edge Thai, who clocked in .51 of a second after (1:49.94) for third.

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