Boys’ swimming: Bittersweet senior day ends in loss

April 1, 2010 — by Tim Rollinson

A random passerby during the March 26 swim meet against Los Gatos may have noticed a strange occurrence. Although the Falcons have a formidable reputation, many of the team members were sporting blue water wings while preparing for the meet.

However, these flotation devices were not being sported due to buoyancy issues, but instead because they had been given to the seven senior swimmers at their final home meet, in honor of Senior Day. The seniors also donned T-shirts with a picture of all the seniors and posters lined the pool deck honoring each of the graduating swimmers. Seniors recognized included Kyle Borch, Kevin Rollinson, Victor Wong, Ron Wong, Joey Persico, Chris Hui and Taylor Chin.

After a ceremony honoring the seniors, the Falcons began the meet against their rival and toughest competitor, a meet the Falcons went on to lose 103-77.

The first race, the 200 medley relay, set the pace for the day. The team of juniors Adam Hinshaw, Justin Chung and Tim Rollinson and sophomore Ian Burns lost to Los Gatos by less than a second. This loss came despite the heroic efforts of Hinshaw, who almost made up for the defecit in the final leg of the relay and set a personal best time.

“We went faster than we did at our other dual meets,” said Hinshaw. “There are things to work on, but if we keep improving I think we will accomplish alot.”

Hinshaw had a strong day individually winning both his events, swimming the 200 freestyle in 1:42.69 and the 500 freestyle in 4:33.63, just two seconds off a league record set by olympian Chris Cavanaugh. Other individual winners included T. Rollinson, who took the 100 breastroke in 1:05.63, Burns, the 200 individual medley in 1:58.57 and freshman Vernon Chan, who swam the 50 freestyle in 23.93.

“It felt really cool to win a race,” said Chan, a first time winner. “I had a really good start which gave me the necessary advantage.”

The only relay victory for Saratoga came in the 200 freestyle relay. Persico was originally supposed to lead off the relay but due to illness was replaced by sophomore Kevin Lu. Lu along with T. Rollinson, Borch and sophomore Mac Hyde finished in a time of 1:36.59.

The final race of the day was the 400 freestyle relay. At the dual meet between the two rivals last year, the meet was decided in the final relay which would go on to set a national record in the event, and which Saratoga won the meet by a single point. The stakes were lower this year as Los Gatos had already clinched the meet but pride was on the line. The team of Borch, Chung, Hinshaw and Burns fell behind early but regained ground and ended the race .2 seconds behind the wildcats. Despite the loss Hinshaw was optimistic after the race.

“I thought we really stepped it up,” said Hinshaw. “We raced well, which gives me confidence for CCS.”

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