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Youth Scene: Newport Hills defeats Lake Forest II

June 21, 2012
(Courtesy of Martin…)

The Newport Hills Killer Whales Swim Team traveled south to the home of the Lake Forest II Dolphins Saturday, and if one did not realize it was a South Coast Swim Conference interleague dual meet, it could have been mistaken for the recent CIF Southern Section finals in high school swimming.

Newport Hills won the meet decisively, 803-461, due to great depth and a total team effort, but the day turned into one highlight reel after the next as its Corona del Mar High swimming stars put on a show not only for their younger teammates but also for all in attendance – with Killer Whale head coach Michelle Sperling beaming, as she has been head coach for these swimmers for the last eight years.

This past May, Killer Whales Christian Garkani and Blake Motal were part of the four-person CdM relay team that set a new 200-yard medley relay meet record (1:32.88) at the CIF Southern Section Division 1 finals. Garkani also took third place overall in the 100-yard freestyle and second in the 200 free and Motal swam to a fourth-place finish in the 50 free and sixth in the 100 free – and both were members of the 200 CdM free relay team that placed third at CIF.

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In addition, Richie Barden, a member of the CdM 400 free relay team that took fourth at the CIF finals, and his sister Hollace Barden (11th in the CIF 100 free) were also swimming for Newport Hills. The star swimmers did not disappoint, as Motal took first in the 50 free and the 50 breaststroke, Garkani won the 50 butterfly, Hollace Barden swam to victory in the 50 fly and Richie Barden and Ian Givant (CdM swimming standout) helped win the 200 medley relay. Lake Forest II also had a star of their own, Rebecca Aguilar, who placed 16th at the CIF finals for El Toro in the 50 free and also won the 50 free at this meet.

Overall, Newport Hills were led by its under-6 girls, 7-8 boys and 11-12 boys – all of which won each of their individual stroke events as well as their two relays.

Three Killer Whale swimmers were three-time winners in individual events – Ryan McManigal in the 7-8 boys' division was victorious in the 25 free, 25 fly and 50 free; Jake Bays in the 9-10 boys was a winner in the 50 free, 25 fly and 100 individual medley; Henry Wilde in the 11-12 boys grabbed gold in the 50 free, 50 fly and 100 IM.

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