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Swimming: CdM girls finish big year

Sea Kings take second place at CIF, their highest placing in seven years.

May 11, 2013|By Matt Szabo
(Liz Morgan )

RIVERSIDE — A special year for the Corona del Mar High girls' aquatics program ended Saturday night at Riverside City College.

Not with a whimper, but with a bang.

The last race of the year for the CdM girls came in the 400-yard freestyle relay. Ally McCormick, Ioanna Haralabidis, Brynne Wong and Stephania Haralabidis lowered their own school record, finishing in 3:26.16.

JSerra's girls set the national high school record in the event, a 3:21.20. But CdM's swim also was pretty special.

It was the seventh-fastest in Orange County history. Consider that when the year started, the CdM girls' school record in that event was more than five seconds slower, a 3:31.42.

So that last race was a special end to that special year, which also included the program's first CIF Southern Section Division 1 title in girls' water polo. In swimming, CdM finished with 232 points, settling for second place, as JSerra won Division 1 for the second straight year with 243 points.

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It is CdM's highest CIF finish in girls' swimming since winning Division 2 titles in 2004 and '06.

"Especially coming in 13th last year, to move up 11 spots is a big deal for us," said McCormick, a senior headed to BYU for swimming. "It's a great way to leave. Obviously, it's tough leaving at the end, but when we finish on top in water polo and really close to the top in swimming, it's awesome."

The Sea Kings finished ahead of third-place Santa Margarita by eight points. They needed that fast swim at the end to hold off the Eagles. Coach Doug Volding explained the situation to the girls behind the blocks before the race.

"We motivated each other," Ioanna Haralabidis said. "We kept telling each other that we're really fast. Whatever we do, we just do the best we can. It's our last [race]. We just gave each other confidence before we got in the water."

Wong, headed to the University of Texas, certainly had confidence in her final high school meet. She finished second place in both of her individual events, the 50 freestyle and 100 butterfly, moving up from her third-place swims at preliminaries.

She lowered her school record in the 50 free to 22.94 seconds. Then she was second as well in the 100 fly, in 54.86.

"I was very happy with the 50 free," Wong said. "That got me going for the 100 fly. It was exciting. When I finished I couldn't see the board, because there was a glare."

Wong put her hands on her cheeks and opened her mouth in surprise.

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