March 18, 2018
The La Mirada Armada sent 19 swimmers to the 2018 NCSA Junior National meet in Orlando Florida last week. The meet has long been the fastest 18 and under short course meet in the country each year. This year was no diffierent. Seven individual event meet records and four relay records were broken. Always the longest, loudest, and most spirited meet in the U.S., it did not disappoint for 2018.
The Armada had five swimmers return for evening action in the finals: Bianca Preciado, Maelynn Lawrence, William Schodorf, David Wang and Kevin Vargas, Bianca was in three finals, the 100 fly, 200 breast and the 50 fly. She also appeared in one swim off, which she won handily. Maelynn swam in the finals of the 200 fly, where she went her best time, 2:01.04. William Schodorf made the finals in the 500 free with a jaw dropping 4:29, right on his teammate's heals, David Wang. David appreared in four finals, the 500 free, the 200 IM, 200 Breast, and the 400 IM. David went best times in five events at the meet and made Armada proud. Kevin Vargas represented Armada in high fashion making six appearances in the finals: the 200 IM, 400 IM, 200 Breast, 200 Fly, 500 free and the1650 free. Kevin was our highest finisher in the meet with two fourth place podium appearances in the 400 IM and the 1650 free. His 1650 success was monumental, swimming only ten minutes after he established a new best time in the Consolation Final of the 200 IM.
Other best times were achieved by Alex Moran in the 400 IM and 200 back, Kevin Greco 200 IM, 400 IM, 200 free, 200 Back; Dylan Hou in the 100 breast, 200 breast and the 1000 free. Alex Rodriguez was outstanding over and over at the meet, with best times in the 1650, 1000, 500 and 200 free. Zach Serrano was best time in the 400 IM and 100 fly. Alex Rodriguez and WIlliam both scored in the mile.
This was a tough and valuable experience for our team. It was an east coast trip with a three hour time change and a daylight savings hour to boot. It was a meet with an entirely different atmosphere that took a while for our kids to adjust to. Our kids, who are not as conditioned to the team environment as those teams in the east, had to adjust to the constant yelling and cheering, the exuberant announcing and the continual music. It seems easy, but you had to be there to understand it. Finally, the depth and speed of the meet was something our kids had not seen before, and it made second swims very difficult to come by if you weren't perfect in the morning. Sometimes we were, sometimes we were not, but we got our share of big swims.
After the racing came to an end the Armada swimmers were treated to a night at Sea World Aquatica and the next morning to Disney World in Orlando. It was a long hard week, but the kids had a great experience and impressed a few college coaches along the way. As usual we looked great on deck and we represented ourselves well; throughout the kids were great ambassadors for our team, further growing the brand and reputation of the La Mirada Armada.