Girls swim dives to Pacific League Championships title victory

Having achieved first place in Pacific League Championships on May 6, girls swim makes history with a strategic win

For the first time in 26 years, girls swim won first place in Pacific League Championships, held at the William Woollett Jr. Aquatics Center on May 6. Beckman, Northwood, Irvine, Woodbridge, University and Corona Del Mar high participated in this swim meet, allowing varsity and junior varsity athletes to compete.

“We were close to winning [last year], but Irvine was our next top competitor,” girls swim coach Pat Bangs said. “Last time they beat and we thought we’d get a whack here, but it became pretty obvious that they were going to run out of strength this year.”

Placing first in league is crucial for the team, since swimmers individually and as a group need to have a specific time to make the cutline in order to qualify for CIF. Because girls swim got first in Pacific League, it was able to participate in CIF and place second among division I schools.

“After winning the championship, I was very happy and proud of the team cause this was the first time WHS girls swim has been PCL Champs in 26 years,” senior and co-captain Jenna Wu said. “Everyone trained really hard in preparation for league champs, and I think it definitely paid off.”

One of the strategies used by the team was evenly distributing the swimmers. Knowing each swimmer’s strengths and weaknesses, the team strategically placed participants evenly so they could place first in each event. The team eventually won two out of three relays with this technique.

“We have a really strong swim team this year,” senior and team co-captain Isis Choi said. “ A lot of the freshmen really stepped up and helped us score crucial points as well as others who improved drastically over the season in order to score at finals. Overall, the work ethic of this team and their determination to help us win were the key ingredients to win league.”