Malibu Seawolves in the Malibu Times

It was an effort worthy of a champion and one that has defined the Malibu High School boys swim program the last three years. Led by another remarkable performance from senior Logan Hotchkiss, the Sharks fell just short at the CIF Southern Section Division IV Swim Championships, yet returned home with some well-deserved hardware.

Malibu had plenty of fight, but ultimately placed second to three-time defending champion Cerritos High School. In a close contest that took place last Friday at Riverside City College, Cerritos accumulated 279 points to win the CIF Division IV championship, with MHS garnering 255 points to claim the CIF runner-up plaque. 

“It was a great meet and all of our swimmers contributed to our runner-up finish at CIF. It was truly a team effort,” Malibu coach Mike Mulligan said. “We were small in numbers, but mighty in heart and attitude. All the boys put in their best effort and almost brought down the mighty juggernaut that Cerritos is.”

Hotchkiss turned in another memorable feat as he defended his CIF titles in the 200 freestyle and 500 freestyle events. For the third year in a row, the UC Santa Barbara-bound swimmer won the 200 freestyle (1:38.22) and the 500 freestyle (4:27.45), giving him six individual CIF titles in his spectacular career. Both were Division IV meet records.

Adding to his illustrious haul of CIF medals, Hotchkiss was a part of the Sharks’ CIF winning relay teams as they won the 200 freestyle relay (1:29.20) and the 400 freestyle relay (3:13.68).

At the CIF prelims that took place two days earlier, Hotchkiss, JC Heckman, Alec Wilimovsky and Thelen McKinna-Worrell set the school record in the 200 freestyle relay in 1:26.30. Hotchkiss swam the leadoff leg in 21.38, setting a school record for 50 meters.

The same quartet set a school record at the CIF prelims in the 400 freestyle relay, with a mark of 3:11.67. Similar to the 200 freestyle relay, Hotchkiss swam the first leg of the 400 freestyle relay in a school record time of 46.00, covering 100 meters.

With victories in both races, Hotchkiss ends his high school career with an astounding 10 CIF titles. He now owns every school record in swimming as he moves on to the CIF State Swim Championships this weekend in Fresno.

Other notable accomplishments at the CIF swim finals included Wilimovsky taking third behind Hotchkiss in the 500 freestyle (4:46.98) and sixth in the 200 IM (2:02.93). Heckman took fifth place in the 50 freestyle (22.12) and eighth in the 100 backstroke (57.53) while Gianluca Purzer placed seventh in the 200 freestyle (1:48.75) and seventh in the 500 freestyle (4:56.44).

The Sharks’ 200 medley relay team of Walker Hannigan, Ben Tran, Purzer and Everest Brady finished ninth in a time of 1:47.67.

Two weeks ago, Malibu won its third straight Frontier League title, racking up 320 points to outdistance Cate (258), Nordhoff (194), Carpinteria (191) and Villanova Prep (134). The Sharks’ junior varsity team also won the league championship, narrowly defeating runner-up Villanova Prep in a close battle, 282-262.

Heckman, Hotchkiss, Wilimovsky and McKinna-Worrell set the school record in the 200 medley relay at league finals in 1:40.99.

“I am proud of all the boys that competed and, more importantly, that their hard work during the season paid off,” said Mulligan. “A big thank you to the Malibu SeaWolves Swim Club and Head Coach Max Jaben for the time he put in training Logan, Gianluca and Alec. It was a fantastic meet and the kids swam well.”