CONTRA COSTA COUNTY, CA — After finishing second three times and spending the last decade among the top three teams in the annual Contra Costa Swimming Championships, the Dana Hills Swim Team outpaced the field to claim its first-ever Division I championship last month in Lafayette.
The County Meet was the week after the Concord Swimming Championships where the Otters won the title for the 28th time in the last 29 City Meets while Gehringer Park defended its city B Division championship by just three points in a thrilling battle with the Pleasant Hill Dolfins.
Both meets took place after the entire 2020 recreation swim season was wiped out by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dana Hills’ 607-point win over second-place Springbrook Swim Team of Lafayette at the County Meet comes with the proverbial asterisk. Crow Canyon Country Club Sea Lions of Danville had won the season-ending meet 15 consecutive times but did not participate this year. Neither did 2019 runner-up Blackhawk Country Club, which had been ruled ineligible for starting its season a month before county rules allow. It is unknown if Crow Canyon will have a recreation team next year or only continue with its year-round Crow Canyon Sharks USA Swimming team.
Because of a date conflict with the Far Western Swim Championships that had been scheduled for Concord Community Pool in 2020 and 2021 the Concord City Meet was held this summer at Northgate High School for the first time. Next year’s site has yet to be determined.
Meet director Diana Corkran was pleased to announce that there were 917 swimmers entered in the meet, less than 100 fewer than in the pre-pandemic 2019 meet. Because of COVID-19 issues Bishop Estates Swim Team combined with Springwood this year but is expected to be back on its own next summer
Dana Hills dominance
As is usually the case, Dana Hills’ dominance was played out in the 54th City Meet relay races with the Otters winning 17 of 24 relays. Incredibly, the DHST girls relays won 11 of 12 relays
DHST had nine A Division (Ava Kate Cottam, Paige Landstrom, Mila Jeffress, Annie Rainsberg, Cole Branich, Harper Lanpher, JJ Westbrook, Brody Gianni, Preston Marks) high-point winners.
In the A Division, Forest Park’s Andrew Dawson (13-14), Springwood’s Maya Canada (13-14), Gehringer Park’s Maclaine Grisafi (6 and under) and Robert Griffith (7-8) of Oakhurst also claimed high-point awards.
City Meet B Division high-point swimmers from local teams included Gehringer Park’s Noah Pelletier (9-10), Isabella Joaquin (9-10) and Kaylee Pond (15-18), Oakhurst’s Ryan Alex (6 and under) and Tyler Brown (15-18), Dana Hills’ Victoria Mangrobang (13-14), Walnut Country’s Davey Finnegan (11-12) and Colin Huckestein (13-14), Springwood’s Lilian Machado (6 and under) and Eugenio Martinez Jr. (7-8) and Vista Diablo Dolphins’ Gabriella Glueck (11-12).
The two meet relay awards went to Dana Hills with the 7-8 girls freestyle relay of Branich, Giulianna Lucia, Sadie James Peacock and Cottam and the boys 9-10 free quartet of Rhys D’Arcy, Gianni, Raymond Lucia and Westbrook.
For the first time in memory, there were no new meet records at the meet.
Ygnacio Wood Swim Team was voted the coveted Team Sportsmanship award.
Otters atop the County
Dana Hills used its depth in relays to finally reach the County Meet mountaintop with the Otters taking first in five medley and six free relays. The 6 and under and 7-8 girls and 9-10 boys DHST quartets swept both relays.
Cole and Charley Branich, Raymond Lucia, Ian Meyer (twice), Landstrom and Caela Hetherton won individual County Meet events for Dana Hills.
Other local county champions were Grisafi of Gehringer Park, Marcus Manuel of Ygnacio Wood and Dawson of Forest Park.
In Division II Springwood finished in the top 10 at ninth while Walnut Country was third in Division III.
City Meet Team Scores
A Division: Dana Hills Otters 1250.67 points, Springwood Sprinters 485.33, Ygnacio Wood Seahorses 364, Gehringer Park Gators 364, Oakhurst Orcas 298, Pleasant Hill Dolfins 296, Walnut Country Stingrays 266, Forest Park Flyers 230, Forest Hills Beavers 178, Vista Diablo Dolphins 32.
B Division: Gehringer Park 342, Pleasant Hill Dolfins 339, Springwood 297, Ygnacio Wood 206, Dana Hills 196, Vista Diablo 173, Walnut Country 159, Oakhurst 156, Forest Park 142, Forest Hills 99.
City Meet Individual
Concord and Clayton team’s finishers (top 4 City Meet – A and B Divisions)
Dana Hills: Cole Branich, Ava Kate Cottam, Giulianna Lucia, Maya Ahluwalia, Khloe Jarvis, Harper Lanpher, Rebecca Adent, Ada Jeffress, Gianna Kougios, Abigail Adent, Thea Jeffress, Paige Landstrom, Caela Hetherton, Jemma Jacques, Reagan Berger, Molly DeSeelhorst, Annie Rainsberg, Angelica Dharmani, Talie Barbano, Isla Acosta, Jocelyn Jacques, Molly Boland, Charley Branich, Mila Jeffress, Maya Ahluwalia, Michaela Pence, Lily LeSage, Jules Della Santina, Allison Fuentes, Isabella Lucia, Anan Mccombe, Vicki Smith, Claire Mohrland, Marco Barbano, Wyatt Switzer, Brody Gianni, Preston Marks, Rhys Delaney, Jack Stack, JJ Westbrook, Raymond Lucia, Rhys D’Arcy, Michael Albert, Jack Parker, Steven Herrera, Marco Barbano, Dominic Vines, Preston Forney, Kieran Dharmani, Kenzo Acosta, Cavin Spruiell, Will Miller, Jordan Newman, Travis Garner, Gavin Switzer, Shawn Boland, Colton Seastrand, Titus Comfort, James Mauritho, Camden Herrera, Jackson Bachtold-Smith, Brandon Vogler, Justin Slater, Matthew Pisani, Aiden Acosta, Dominic Celentano, Ellis Spruiell, Julia Ford, Aria Taylor, Jessica Nielsen, Sophia Cadero, Rhyan Webb, Victoria Mangrobang, Jillian Chrobak, Anjali Ahluwalia.
Forest Park: Eve Kirby, Alexis Steffensen, Brooklyn Henggeler, Hailey Hix, Andrew Dawson, Jaden Nieves, Tommy Martin, Dominic Dawson, Ben Duran, Jaden Newton, Xavier Ysmael, Nate Wendling, Kahil Padilla, Nye No, Scarlett Ringue, Emma Tayas, Carly Spilman, Elayna Ysmael, Bailey Plumley, Myriah Chau.
Gehringer Park: Kacey Bulda, Carrie Shin, Amelia Chaix, Kaylee Pond, Hannah Jacobs, Genevieve Joaquin, Marissa McCarty, Isabella Joaquin, Nikki Gibbs, Frances Asselin, Erin Renteria, Katelyn Mathie, Madison Haynes, Julia Daw, Samantha Leone, Noah Leone, Noah Shin, Tano Bushnell, Jonah Oleole, Nico Bushnell, Noah Pelletier, Eli Oleole, J.D. Hopkins, Tycen Dekker, Daniel Oleole, Teddy Hopkins, Isaiah Muhlestein, WB Pelletier, Niko Lawler, David Giordano, Maclaine Grisafi, Dominic Dawson, Ben Asselin, Dominic Baron, Ben Franks, Sophia Long, Avery Boughton, Rylee Cox, Amelia Giordano, Destiny Mestas.
Oakhurst: Grace Smith, Robert Griffith, Connor White, Grant Huntington, Alex McSherry, Oliver Lutz, Chase Wilcox, Tyler Brown, Charlie Mohr, Wyatt Boone, William Lingua, Alex Colt, Alex Ryan, Reid, O’Connor, Alexa Bennett, Kaitlyn Robison, Avica Bennett, Cora White, Sarah Chisholm, Ingrid Mohr, Kelsey Macaulay.
Springwood: Cassidy Ortiz, Ella Hertzfeldt, Avery Petricca, Ayla Moreno, Avery Wood, Brianna Rodriquez, Lilian Machado, Isabella Martinez, Alexis Teitsma, Iris Dillon, Adrienne Beaubien, Sofia Carllli, Lilly Partida, Riley Brandt, Dalton Cooper, Eugenio Martinez, Jr., Samuel Ortiz, Rodolfo Castro, Giles Thompson, Noah Garcia, Keegan D’Arcy, Malachi Shaw, Dawson Teitsma, Kanaloa Ka’ai, Evan Beaubien, Clayton Rodriguez, Maddon Hertzfeldt, Shawn Canada, Damik Van Fanos, Joaquin Hernandez, John Gregory, Eric Tizon, Caleb Tizon, Johnny Borba, Derek Tizon, Alexa Malsom, Maya Canada, Julia Salimpour, Skyler Champathong, Julianna Ruiz, Avery Sealock, Juliana Collins,
Vista Diablo: Sophia Lipina, G Glueck, Olivia Baldovino, Melina Baldovino, Kendall Cook, India Bailey, Peyton Roberts, Kiley Johnson, Calin Krauss, Seth Stagmier, Calvin Kral, Will Roloson, Andrew Jay Bayot, Caleb Cook, Everett Peters, Nathan Stagmier.
Walnut Country: Ashlyn Huckestein, Leah Agustin, Danielle Lindquist, Ireland Lewis, Sophie Liu, Hunter Tsang, Colin Huckestein, Finnegan Davey, Cole Louie, Kyle Washmera, Aiden Huckestein, Jonathan Lindquist, Logan Dagg, Brayden Shen, Parker Sio, Brady Cannon, Dimitri Acevedo, Nate Dobbs, Oliver Knoflick, Monica Warren, Molly Rothwell.
Ygnacio Wood: Jenna Moorhouse, Amanda Ward, Alexis Weiss, Ava Manuel, Reagan Rasmussen, Courtney Ward, Jesslyn Sabet, Marcus Manuel, Tommy Meriam, Michael Manuel, Devan Cooper, Andrew Kosich, Joaquin Halverson, Noah Shelley, Joey Paredes, Joey Mucha, Ethan Kagugube, Joseph Kosich, Adam Dunning, Nic Zeliff, Grayson Malkovich, Seth Christy, McKenna Doggett, Emma Cole, Brynn Kagugube, Anna Lindsay, Grace Weckerle, Regan Shelley, Grace Weckerle, Katie Willis, Emily Marques, Aleks Zeliff, Cailyn Sabet.
Jay Bedecarré is a long-time resident and writer in Concord and Clayton. He began his newspaper writing career while still a senior at Mt. Diablo High School and he has been part of The Pioneer since its inception in 2003. Jay also operates Bay Area Festivals, presenting events around the San Francisco Bay Area including Bay Area KidFest annually in Downtown Concord.