CIF-SS Preview: Division III – Crean Lutheran Girls Again; Boys Too Close To Call

Girls’ Meet

How do you compete against a team that is capable of winning 6 of 8 individual events and all three relays? Well, you don’t. You battle for second place. That’s what Rio Mesa, Polytechnic School (Pasadena), Granite Hills, Laguna Beach, and La Reina will all be doing and it should be fun to see who comes out on top.

The girls of Crean Lutheran are likely to score twice as many points as their next closest competitor so there’ll be no drama in the Division 3 team title this year. After all, the Crean roster includes junior Ella Eastin, Stanford-bound senior Lindsey Engel, and sophomore Emily Eastin, all potential double event winners. Providing terrific depth this year and hoping to keep the team’s streak going in future years are sophomore Tianna Jorgenson and freshmen Katia Young and Rachel Taylor.

Laguna Beach had a strong second-place finish in 2013. They graduated a couple of the seniors that had helped them score relay points but still have senior Lila Vera and sophomore Abby Cohn, plus they have added senior sprinter Cara Borkovec and freshmen Aria Fischer.

Rio Mesa, tenth in 2013, will be counting on senior Taylor Mitsuuchi, juniors Anabel Barela and Crista Walters, and freshman Magie Le to propel them to the runner-up position this year.

Girls Standings

  1. Crean Lutheran
  2. Rio Mesa
  3. Poly/Pasadena
  4. Granite Hills
  5. Laguna Beach
  6. La Reina
  7. Viewpoint
  8. La Serna
  9. Maranatha
  10. Marlborough

Must-See Events

200 medley and 200 free relays: *record watch* Crean broke the D3 medley relay record last year and comes in to this meet seeded a second faster. They are four seconds ahead of pace for the CIF D3 200 free relay record. We will be keeping an eye on the national independent school records as well; Crean’s seed time is 4.5 seconds off in the medley and 3 seconds off in the free relay.

200 IM: *record watch* Although there’s really no one who can challenge Ella Eastin in this event, she makes it exciting anyway because she’s racing against the clock – the clock of past record-holders. Eastin went a 1:55.15 (11 seconds ahead of the second-place finisher) in this race last year to set the national independent school record. Who knows what’s she can do this year?

100 free: *record watch* Current record-holder Engel of Crean could lower her own D3 standard of 48.96 but also has a shot at the national independent school record (48.39), set by Missy Franklin in 2010. In her wake will be a handful of similarly-seeded sprinters, all vying for second place: Robin Smallwood (junior, Granite Hills Apple Valley), Laguna Beach’s Borkovec, Rio Mesa’s Barela, and Marissa Thompson (sophomore, Viewpoint).

100 breast: *record watch* Not an event she swims all that regularly, Ella Eastin nevertheless managed a 1:02.3 at last year’s league championships, which means the D3 record of 1:02.59 could be broken for the first time since 1984. Eastin will have to work it, though, as La Serna senior and UC Santa Barbara commit Alyssa Shew and La Salle sophomore Jacqueline Torrez will be challenging her every step of the way.


Boys’ Meet

This one should be a nail-biter. JW North, Laguna Beach, and Flintridge Prep are all seeded within a couple of points of each other. That means every finalist counts, every relay takeoff is important. North was the big winner last year, and Viewpoint cruised into second place without much competition. Third through seventh, though, was a very tight race with Laguna Beach eventually coming out on top.

North lost 2013 double event-winner Kyle Perez to graduation but returns sophomores Justin Nilaad and Cristian Moncayo and juniors Noah Schlenk and Austin Borja. They also have high expectations for freshman Javier Bernal.

The 2013 Laguna Beach squad was heavy on freshmen and most of them are back again ready to do business: Erik Juliusson won two events last year, Cameron Karkoska had a pair of top-eight finishes, and Max Morgan was a finalist and integral member of scoring relays. Also back is junior Cade Baldridge.

Flintridge Prep is led by seniors Carlo Sivilotti (a Swarthmore commit) and Marco Flores (who will swim at Trinity) and freshman Andreas Langen, hoping to make it a big year for the graduating seniors. Sivilotti had one top-eight finish and was on all three relays last year while Flores had 2 “A” finals and two relays. This year he is seeded first in both his events.

Boys Standings

  1. North, J.W.
  2. Laguna Beach
  3. Flintridge Prep
  4. Camarillo
  5. Poly/Riverside
  6. Rio Mesa
  7. Santa Fe
  8. Granite Hills
  9. West Valley
  10. Viewpoint

Must-See Events

200 free: Garret Shimko (senior, Poly/Riverside) and Michael Nunn (senior, Camarillo) are both looking to go out with a CIF title under their belts, while North’s Nilaad will be hoping this event puts North out front in the team race. They are all three fairly evenly matched so this should be a fun one.

100 free: Three of the top eight all come from Laguna Beach, including Karkoska, Morgan, and Baldridge. Top seed Ashton Lowery (senior, Granite Hills Apple Valley) will be looking to improve on his fifth place finish of 2013, while sophomore Harrison Strange of Oaks Christian, Poly/Riverside’s Shimko, and North’s Schlenk all have a shot at the CIF title as well.

100 back: This is another race that could go in several different directions. Camarillo’s Nunn comes in with the fastest time but only by .05 over Juliusson of Laguna Beach, who won the event as a freshman last year. Other contenders include JP Mortenson (freshman, Windward), Adrian Hui (junior, Webb Schools), Brennen Hauser (senior, Camarillo), and Nathan Ketcheside (freshman, Poly/Riverside).


Psych sheets and results can be found here.

Division I Prelims Thursday May 15; 9:00am Finals Saturday May 17; 5:00pm
Division II Prelims Friday, May 16; 9:00am Finals Saturday May 17; 10:00am
Division III Prelims Wednesday, May 14; 4:00pm Finals Thursday May 15; 5:00pm
Division IV Prelims Wednesday May 14; 9:00am Finals Friday May 16; 5:00pm


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I think another must-see event is also the 100 fly and 100 back. We have a handful of freshmen in the top 5 of each event!


Engel with a swift 49.00 100 free prelims swim in the scorching heat yesterday. A record or two may be coming at finals tonight.

About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swim/swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

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