Huskies win first-ever swim medal at state

PULL PATTERN BREATHING—No. 23-seeded Wenning Shen rotates out of the “J” position to breath during the 50-yard backstroke at CCCAA State swim Championships May 2. Shen placed No. 10 with a personal record in the consolation finals. CM/TADZIO GARCIA
PULL PATTERN BREATHING—No. 23-seeded Wenning Shen rotates out of the “J” position to breath during the 50-yard backstroke at CCCAA State swim Championships May 2 in the consolation finals. Shen placed No. 10 with a personal record. CN/TADZIO GARCIA

By Tadzio Garcia

May 9 UPDATE:
Huskies earn nine All-American status awards
Erik Matheson, East Los Angeles swim and dive head coach, announced today that Alice YingFei Zhang has earned California Community College Athletic Association All-American status in seven swim events this season. Wenning Shen earned All-American status in two events, the 50-yard and the 100-yard backstroke.

ELAC Campus News, Volume 71, Issue 21, May 7, Print Version Update:

The East Los Angeles College women’s swim team finished in 17th place at the 2014 California Community College Athletic Association Swim and Dive State Championships held May 1-3 in the ELAC Swim Stadium.

Diablo Valley College of Pleasant Hill won the women’s team title with 414 points, surpassing Orange Coast College (400 points) of Costa Mesa on the final day to win. It was Diablo Valley’s first title in seven years and ninth in its history.

South Coast Conference rival Pasadena City College finished in sixth place, its best showing ever in a state finals swim meet.

Golden West College of Huntington Beach won the men’s state title with 478 points. SCC rival Mt. San Antonio College took second place with 344 points. ELAC does not sport a men’s team.

Alice YingFei Zhang and Wenning Shen are the first ELAC women’s swimmers to advance to a state finals meet in 25 years. Zhang won All-American status in three races.

She won the silver medal taking second place in the 100-yard individual medley. She was No. 19-seeded entering the event’s prelims. Melissa Bergesen of Golden West won the 100 IM.

“Bergesen was the only swimmer to break the minute mark (in 58.90 seconds) after trailing Ashley Boyle of Santa Rosa (third, 1:00.86). The host school East Los Angeles picked up its first-ever medal as Zhang beat Boyle to the wall at 1:00.56,” Robert Lewis, CCCAA SID, said.

Zhang placed fourth in the 50-yard breaststroke. Allison Gargalikis of Diablo Valley won the event and was the women’s co-player or the meet after breaking three state meet records and one pool record, during the three-day event. Kelsey Leonard of Diablo Valley was the other co-player of the meet.

Zhang won her third medal and All-American status in the 100 breaststroke placing fifth. She was No. 16-seeded in the event.

“She is the highest ranking (swimmer) ELAC has ever had, achieving what no one else has at this college,” Erik Matheson, ELAC swim and dive team head coach, said.

Zhang said she went in each prelims race with a strategy of qualifying to the final of each event rather than burning herself out with her fastest times.

Despite her goal, Zhang finished with personal records in every prelims and finals race. She dropped 2.15 seconds in winning a silver medal.

Teammate Wenning Shen advanced to the consolation finals in the 50 and 100 backstrokes. “She missed qualifying in the 100 (IM) consolation finals by just .02 of a second, but she finished with a personal record,” ELAC second-year swim coach Susan Lai said.

Entering the 50 back as the No. 23 seed, Shen placed 10th, swimming personal records in the prelims and consolation finals. Shen placed 14th in the 100 back.

Zhang scored 45 points for ELAC. Shen add 14 points to vault ELAC past De Anza, San Joaquin Delta and Grossmont colleges in the final standings.

“Wenning (Shen) dropped three seconds in the 100 (individual medley), a half second in the 50 breaststroke and a full second in the 100 breaststroke an she accomplished this without being in the pool for almost a month,” Matheson said.

The Swim Stadium drew about 3,000 including athletes and fans over the three days.

Final 2014 CCCAA Women’s Swim and Dive team standings:

1. Diablo Valley College, 414 points
2. Orange Coast College, 400
3. Santa Rosa Junior College, 364.5
4. Golden West College, 352
5. Sierra College, 313.5
6. Pasadena City College, 269
7. Mt San Antonio College, 238
8. Riverside City College, 187
9. American River College, 186
10. Bakersfield College, 172
11. Cuesta College, 116
12. Santa Barbara City College, 111
13. El Camino College, 108
14. San Diego Mesa College, 85
15. Los Angeles Valley College, 63
15. Shasta College, 63
17. East Los Angeles College, 59
18. De Anza College, 52
19. San Joaquin Delta College, 47
20. Grossmont College, 34
21. College of Marin, 33
22. Cerritos College, 31
23. Allan Hancock College, 23
24. Modesto Junior College, 21
25. College of San Mateo, 18
26. Las Positas College, 16
27. West Valley College, 15
28. Saddleback College, 8
29. Long Beach City College, 6
29. College of the Canyons, 6
31. Merced College, 4
32. Fullerton College, 3
33. Chaffey College, 2
33. Cypress College, 2
35. Ventura College, 1

PRESSURE UNDER CONTROL—Alice Ying Fei Zhang warms up in the breaststroke prior to her East Los Angele College record-breaking 100-yard individual medley medal run at the CCCAA Swim and Dive Championships May 1 in the ELAC Swim Stadium. “I focus on everything I do in the pool, whether I am warming up or competing,” Zhang said. CN/TADZIO GARCIA
PRESSURE UNDER CONTROL—Alice Ying Fei Zhang warms up in the breaststroke prior to her East Los Angele College record-breaking 100-yard individual medley medal run at the CCCAA Swim and Dive Championships May 1 in the ELAC Swim Stadium. “I focus on everything I do in the pool, whether I am warming up or competing,” Zhang said. CN/TADZIO GARCIA

 

 

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