Recap: Boys' swimming concludes successful season

Sam Kelley and Frankie Comey

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Paly Boy's swimming pose with after winning second at CCS. Photo by Sam Kelley.

The Paly boys’ swimming team poses after placing second at CCS. Swimmers Kevin Bowers, Ethan Look, Alex Francis, Bo Fields, Andrew Liang, Andrew Cho, William Lee, Omri Newman, and Bret Pinsker. Photo by Sam Kelley.

The Palo Alto High School boys’ varsity swimming team concluded another successful season by claiming second place at the Central Coast Section finals meet last Saturday.

The boys lost only one dual meet this season and finished their season with a record of 6-0-1 within the Santa Clara Valley Athletic League as well as taking the varsity boys league title.

Although Monta Vista High School defeated Paly earlier in the season during a league meet, senior captain Alex Francis was excited about Paly’s chances going into the meet.

“We lost because we came into the dual meet with too much confidence, as if we could win without putting it all out there,” Francis said. “This time we’ve shaved and tapered, two factors that can make all the difference between winning and losing.”

The SCVAL meet proved to be a successful outing for the team and a few individuals. Two of Paly’s top swimmers – juniors Andrew Liang and William Lee – set league records in the 100 butterfly and 100 backstroke respectively. With a time of 47.88 seconds, Liang toppled Mark Spitz’s 40-year-old league record and Lee broke his own league record with a time of 50.36.

Head swim coach Danny Dye offered congratulations to both Liang and Lee upon their success at Leagues.

“It makes me proud to see those two grow so much each year,” Dye said. “I would be surprised to not see them get better next year as they reach for new heights.”

For some of Paly’s swimmers, namely Liang and Lee, the SCVAL meet would not be the stage for their all-out best performance. Swimmers that met the cut times and qualified for the CCS meet started a taper routine to maximize their performance at the CCS meet.

Paly’s main goal going into the CCS meet was to win the varsity boys division of the meet and to dethrone Bellarmine High School. Yet, this goal fell short as Paly came in seeded only 14 points behind Bellarmine but could not get the victory. Bellarmine has now been crowned CCS Champions for the last 29 years in a row.

Dye spoke well of the team following its performance at the CCS finals.

“I thought the team did well. We won leagues and scored more points than last year,” Dye said. “[Swimmers] had good time drops. With another year in this young team, they are going to do great next year.”