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Trio Keys Women's Swim To Win Over ELAC

Trio Keys Women's Swim To Win Over ELAC image

Mikela Velasquez, Giselle Mendieta and Paige Watroba each won a pair of races to lead the Pasadena City College women's swim team to a 150-121 team triumph over East Los Angeles in a South Coast Conference double dual meet held Friday at the Aquatic Center.

The Lancers' trio also kept PCC close against Cerritos, but lost by a 145-125 count. Cerritos beat ELAC, 151-124. Pasadena is now 3-3 in SCC meets.

The letterman Velasquez swam to first place in the 50-yard freestyle (25.93 seconds) and 100-freestyle (56.76) while taking second in the 100 individual medley. Mendieta scored wins in the 50-breaststroke (34.64) and 100-breaststroke (1:14.35). Watroba worked her success in capturing the 50-butterfly (29.78) and 100-butterfly (1:05.80) events. PCC made it seven individual overall event victories with sophomore Courtney Jensen's triumph in the 1,000-freestyle (11:52.58).

Watroba's 1:09.88 was a two-second drop for her in taking second in the 100-backstroke. Ashli Gonzalez-Griffen (Charter Oak High), swimming in her first meet of the season, finished a strong second to Mendieta in the 50-breaststroke (35.35) and was third in the 100 version at 1:18.86. Showing her versatility, Jensen took second in both the 50-backstroke (33.10) and 500-freestyle (5:44.28). Cynthia Martinez placed second in the 100-butterfly (1:10.03).

Despite the overall high finishes, PCC couldn't muster enough to defeat Cerritos because it lost automatic points with no diver (nine points for Falcons) and the Lancers failed to win the two relay races. Cerritos' depth in scoring points in the No. 3-to-5 places proved also to hurt the squad's team scoring.


Because East Los Angeles fields only a women's swim program, the Lancers' men's team participated in a single dual meet with Cerritos, coming up short, 152-126. The team's SCC record fell to 2-3.

In a similar scenario as the women's meet, Pasadena actually dominated in event wins, taking nine first places in 14 races. Cerritos took 16 points in the diving competition (PCC does not have a diver this season), but another factor was the team never had more than two swimmers score in any of the events.

Despite the team defeat, PCC Head Coach Terry Stoddard pointed to outstanding performances turned in by several individuals. Sophomore star Cario Liu won the 200-freestyle (1:50.11), 200-backstroke (2:03.19), and 200-butterfly (2:04.23) in another sign that he is a frontrunner for SCC Swimmer of the Year.

Stephen To captured the 100-freestyle with a season-best 49.69 swim, and won the 100-butterfly (53.52). Scott Wong was victorious in the 100-breaststroke (1:06.17) and 200-breaststroke (2:26.34). Other event wins were turned in by Michael Chiodo in the 100-backstroke (58.57) and the 200 medley relay squad of Chiodo (backstroke), Liu (breaststroke), To (butterfly), and Aaron Lam (freestyle) with a time of 1:43.42. Chiodo, from Kennedy High, was second in two other events.

PCC has one more meet in the team dual season next Friday, Mar. 30 when the two teams travel to face Long Beach and Los Angeles Trade-Tech at LBCC (meet begins at 12:30 p.m.).

[Photo--PCC freshman Paige Watroba swims to an event win in a butterfly event, image by Richard Quinton.]

Release Date: 03/24/12
Robert Lewis, Sports Information
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