Banner season ending leads solid efforts
Crescenta Valley's Young Tae Seo put on an effort to remember during CIF Southern Section Division II Swim Finals, one of many memorable local efforts.
Crescenta Valley High's Young Tae Seo smiled after winning the 200 freestyle against Arcadia a Pacific League swim meet at Arcadia High School on April 23. (Tim Berger/File Photo)
1 Young Tae Seo closes out a banner career on May 11 — The CIF Southern Section Division II Swimming Finals proved to be an ultimately bittersweet day for the senior, who capped a brilliant career.
On one hand, defending divisional champion Crescenta Valley High lost its title to Los Osos, 285-234, at Riverside Community College on May 11.
Yet, the team effort did not overshadow what was an ultimately stellar individual effort for Seo.
The Naval Academy-bound senior still set two divisional records that day, the first when he rallied from a deficit midway through the 200-yard medley versus top-seeded Daniel McArthur of Lakewood.
Seo recovered through the breaststroke portion and broke his own record of 1 minute, 48.38 seconds with a mark of 1:47.80, which was almost two seconds faster than McArthur (1:49.53).
“That’s what I always try to do, pull from the breaststroke. I am happy breaking the record, but I could have done better, it’s not my best time,” said Seo after the victory. “I knew he wasn’t a breaststroker, so I knew that’s the only way I could beat him.”
Previously, Seo played the role of teammate perfectly, joining with Harrison Thai, Edward Yi and Jacob Ksendzov to set a new 200-medley relay record, topping runner-up Lakewood (1:34:47) by over a second with a mark of 1:33.39.
Seo then broke his 2011 record in the 100 breaststroke (55.81) in 55.25, but was just edged by Arroyo Grande’s Zachary Stevens’ record-setting performance (55.13).
2 Kirsten Vose at the CIF-SS championships on May 11 — Sophomore slumps typically last more than a few hours, but for Vose, she recovered in time for an exceptional finish at the CIF Southern Section Division I Swim Finals on May 11 at Riverside Community College.
Vose entered the final day of the season as the top-seeded swimmer in her two individual events — the 200-yard individual medley and the 100-yard breaststroke.
Her first event showcased Vose’s youth as the Tolog struggled to overcome two clock malfunctions.
Vose finished sixth in the 200 IM in a mark of 2:05.63, well behind the 2:01.81 pace of race winner and fellow sophomore Karli Thuen of JSerra.
Yet, later that afternoon, Vose found redemption with a victory in the breaststroke over University High senior Maggie Burton.
Vose trailed after 25 yards before eventually pulling even with a 1/4 of the race remaining and overtaking Burton on the final strokes for a victory in 1:02.57, just ahead of Burton’s 1:02.85.
“I saw her at the 50 and I wanted it so bad, I just pushed as hard as I could to try to catch her,” said Vose after the victory. “It feels really good, I knew it was going to be a really hard race because we’re all really fast.”
Vose also joined the trio of Emily Balog, Katie Altmayer and Kate Herrill in winning the 200-yard medley relay in upset fashion (1:44.26), while the same quartet took fourth in the 200-yard freestyle relay (1:36.12).
Overall, Flintridge Sacred Heart clinched seventh with 152 points, which marked the best finish for the program since it was moved up to Division I in 2009.
3 Heather MacDougall at CIF-SS championships on May 11 — Maybe there was no more impressive day for local athletes than May 11.