The TPHS Swim and Dive Team claimed wins in both the Avocado West North County League and Division 1 CIF, their eighth consecutive CIF win for the girls and third for the boys.
Both Avocado League victories took place at the Carlsbad Monroe Pool on the Carlsbad High School campus, with diving on May 5 and swimming on May 6. Meanwhile, the CIF victories took place on May 12 at San Diego Mesa College for diving and May 13 at Granite Hills High School for swimming.
“[The Avocado League is] not really what we’re after at the start of the season, our goal is always to win CIF … we’re always looking for the big prize, so the league is what it is, it’s kind of a tune-up for CIFs,” Head Coach Richard Contreras said.
Swimmers and divers must attend daily practices to work on their skills. These consist of in-water and dry land exercises, which includes both distance and sprint workouts. They also have IM days where they practice the different strokes in each race. For example, Lindsey Anderson, who is a “sprint specialist” (12) said she swims about 5,000 yards per workout, while the distance swimmers swim “miles upon miles” during each practice, according to Anderson.
“Practices are five days a week … and the high school practice is an hour and 15 minutes,” Contreras said, “But there’s [also] a lot of kids that swim for clubs, so they swim for about two and a half hours. And those kids swim like seven times a week.”
Varsity swimmers practice seven days a week. They swim with their club teams during the week and practice with the school team only in preparation for meets. And after putting in the amount of effort that they do, they are quite happy to come home with a win.
“Everything just pays off. All of your hard work and all the hours you spend after school … in practices, it finally pays off,” Amelia Cho (10) said.
But hard work by the athletes during practices and meets is not the only factor leading to the team’s success.
“A lot of organization, and a lot of keeping the kids on track … but, keeping them ready to go and making sure all of the administrative stuff is in order is a big bulk of the challenge,” Contreras said, “We [also] have a great collection of fast swimmers … more so than anybody in San Diego.”
In addition to contributing to the athletic excellence of the school with another sports victory, the athletes are also thrilled to be a part of the now-annual custom of winning, especially because TPHS just moved into first place for the longest consecutive streak.
“It’s really exciting to be part of the Falcon tradition, and it’s kind of cool looking at the banners from the past years, and knowing that I was a part of a lot of those,” Anderson said.
And while TPHS has come out on top for the past several years, there have been some meets that ended with closer final scores than others. Those are the times the team kicks into high gear in order to secure a win, according to Cho.
“If it got close, everyone would get nervous, and we would ramp it up,” Cho said, “We were ready to do anything to win.”
After their CIF success, the team continued on to the CIF State Swimming Championships in Clovis on May 18-20, where the boys lost to Oak Ridge High School from El Dorado Hills in the Sacramento area and the girls fell to Monte Vista High School from Danville, California, in the East San Francisco Bay area.