PHS Swim | Schwab fourth at NCS championships

Photos: Nina Schwab diving (photo by Kim Fisher)

Piedmont High School’s Nina Schwab finished fourth in diving at the North Coast Section championships May 1 at Concord Community Pool. Schwab scored 423.35 points and qualified for the California Interscholastic Federation Championships May 9 at Clovis West.

Clayton Valley’s Molly Gray won the NCS title with a score of 540.25.

Schwab improved from her ninth-place finish at last year’s NCS meet. “I am excited,” Schwab said. “I’ve only been diving for a year and a half so I’m a lot better at diving this year. I was just hoping. I was definitely surprised that I made it because I messed up on one of my dives.”

Piedmont had several other strong performances at the NCS championships. The boys team scored 34 points and finished 20th behind champion De La Salle (236). The girls team had 18 points tying for 26th place. Campolindo won with 310 points.

Taylor Rolefson finished 16 th in the girls 100-yard butterfly in 59.73 seconds, good for eighth in the B final and 16th overall. She swam 58.44 in the preliminaries. She also just missed the B final in the 200 freestyle, coming home in 17 th place in preliminaries in 1:56.60.

“Taylor Rolefson was big,” Highlanders swimming coach Colby Price said. “She has dropped time in her 100 fly and her 200 free and had a standout phenomenal meet.”

Owen Blanford stood out for the boys team, winning the B final in the 200 freestyle in 1:42.58. That is a “consideration time” for the CIF championships, but Blanford did not get in. He also swam 4:46.43 in the 500 freestyle preliminaries, the 23rd-best time. He also swam a leg on the 400 freestyle relay team that finished third in the B final in 3:11.66.

Owen Blanford swimming (photo by Kathy Rolefson)

The team of Blanford, Asher Takazawa, Tom Rolefson and Nikita Costello swam 3:10.09 in the preliminaries.

The boys 200 freestyle relay team of Rolefson, Blanford, Costello and Dimitri Secor also took third in the B final in 1:28.23. The recorded a time of 1:27.79 in the preliminaries.

Takazawa was eighth in the B final of the 100 backstroke in 54.25. He swam 53.03 in the preliminary round. Costello just missed the B final in the 100 freestyle, swimming 47.57 in the preliminaries, 17th overall. Rolefson was 29th in qualifying (48.35) and Takazawa was 37th (49.03).

Costello was 31st in qualifying in the 200 freestyle in 1:46.34. Secor was 23rd in preliminaries in the 200 individual medley and Rolefson was 23rd in preliminaries in the 50 freestyle in 21.88.

The team of Takazawa, Evan Byun, Secor and Simon March-Cunningham swam 1:42.82 in qualifying for the 200 medley relay, 30th overall.

Josephine Oesterer was seventh in the B final of the girls 100 backstroke in 1:00.07. She swam 59.24 in the preliminaries. She also joined Abigail Jacoby, Sonja Ten Grotenhuis and Taylor Rolefson to record the 15th-best time in the 200 freestyle relay in 1:42.66. Ten Grotenhuis, Jacoby, Oesterer and Sydney Olsen were 23rd in preliminaries for the 200 medley relay in 1:57.02.

Price was generally happy with how his team performed this season. “I felt we got a lot of good swims, personally,” he said. “The De La Salle Invitational. The three dual meet swims we got were against schools that were a little bit tougher.”

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