June 1, 2016 (Article by David Axelson | Photo by Kel Casey)
Islander Aquatics Director Randy Burgess provides his insights into the culmination of the Boys and Girls Swim Season. “In its 100th year as a statewide education-based athletic organization, the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) sponsored the Inaugural California State Swimming Championships.
This past weekend, Coronado was represented by five young men competing in that event at Fresno Clovis West High School. Juniors Riley Ferguson, Bill Kusters, Daniel Dedina and Nick Sedberry were joined by sophomore Ryan Armes to compete in two events that they qualified for during the CIF San Diego Section Finals, held the previous weekend at Granite Hills High School.
Friday, the Islander’s 200 Freestyle Relay time, had them seeded 22nd coming into the State meet. Kusters lead off the relay with a phenomenal 21.78 (an official time as he was the team’s lead swimmer), one of the fastest 50 freestyles ever for an Islander. Armes then followed up with a 22.58, and Dedina, going third, nailed a 21.29. Ferguson concluded the effort with a 20.87 anchor swim.
Their official time of 1:26.52 was almost a half second faster than their entry time of 1:27.09, and just missed the San Diego Section and Coronado High School record of 1:25.97, set at the 2010 San Diego Section CIF Division II Finals by former Islanders Rex Butler, Brennan Casey, Andrew Ireland and Tommy Schofer. The 2015 version of the Islander relay, with all of the swimmers returning next year, vowed in unison to break that standard in 2016. Officially Coronado’s 200 Free Relay team finished 17th in the state.
Earlier in the Prelims, Ferguson swam the only individual entry by the CHS Team. Coming into the State meet as a 22nd seed, Ferguson had a great preliminary swim Friday afternoon, busting into the Championship heat by qualifying in seventh place.
The next day, Championship Saturday, the relay team had a slight glimmer of hope in swimming again, as they finished 17th, just .06 seconds away from a second swim. But before the relay event, Ferguson’s 50 free was reason the cheer. Swimming in an outside lane, Ferguson had a great start and turn, heading for a possible Top Three podium finish. As he touched, he quickly realized that he finished fourth in 20.58 and had just smashed Butler’s 2012 school record of 20.84. Although the relay did not get a chance to step in as the first alternate, Ferguson credited his teammates as the catalysts for his awesome splash.” Ferguson finished fourth in the state in a competition that includes all schools irrespective of enrollment.
In related swimming news, the program held their post-season banquet last week and the Varsity Award Winners included (Boys winners, followed by Girls Winners) Most Valuable –Ferguson and Hannah Storum/Haley Chasin; Team Captain –Dedina and Abi Mosk; Coaches’ Award –Armes and Margaret Plummer; Most Improved –Sedberry and Anna Makridis; Diving Award – Alyssa Green.
Junior Varsity Awards were presented to: Most Valuable – Andrew Pettit and Maggie Mahrer; Team Captain – Andrew Dudley and Natalie Dugas; Coaches’ Award – Noah Kracht and Isabel Zaller; Most Improved – Caleb Woodson and Steffany James.