The Las Positas College women’s swim team wrote themselves into school history, earning the school’s first conference championship.
“Had to check, and I believe this is the first conference championship for Las Positas,” Coach Jason Craighead said. “We’re checking the archives to make sure.”
It’s been confirmed his team is indeed the first.
Leading the way was arguably the women’s most valuable swimmer McKenna Stevulak. The freshman tallied 56 total points combined in the 50 backstroke, 100 backstroke and 50 free. Her strong performances in all three events were record breakers, earning Stevulak a trip to the state tournament in East Los Angeles.
“I’m excited,” Stevulak said. “It’s weird that I’m the only one going because a lot of people on our team are fast.”
Along with a dazzling trophy displayed on Coach Craighead’s desk, each swimmer was awarded her championship medal.
“That was awesome,” Stevulak said. She collected six medals that day. “You wait around in the pool, they come around and presented medals on your block.”
Fellow teammates Maria Cui, Cassie Stuart and Megan Simons combined with the freshman star to break all five team relay school records.
Despite a strong overall showing from the entire women’s team, only Stevulak will be attending the state competition for women’s swim and dive.
Head Coach Jason Craighead admits they should be sending more than a couple of his athletes to state.
“The disappointing part is we had really fast women’s relays, but we won conference and that was our first goal,” Craighead said.
The men’s swim and dive couldn’t pull out a championship, but finished strong. They placed third overall as a team.
The men’s showing was highlighted by state bound Gabe Nieto, who finished first in both the one and three meter events.
Diving since his junior season at Granada high, Nieto is now preparing for his biggest dives yet. Nobody was more surprised than Nieto at his selection to the state championship.
“It’s kind of shocking” Nieto said. “It’s surreal, I wasn’t really expecting it.”
State hopeful Chris Mowry was denied the honor to accompany his teammate Nieto to L.A. despite a strong showing throughout the year.
“He came out of nowhere in his mile and got second in conference” said Craighead of Mowry. “A phenomenal swim.”
For many this is the last swim season of their swimming and diving careers. They will rely on freshman stars Stevulak and Nieto to carry the torch and bring a state title to LPC.
The State Championship will be held from April 25 to the 27 at East Los Angeles College.