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20 high school swimmers rescued off La Jolla

La Jolla Cove

A student with the Rancho Verde High School swim team is wrapped in a blanket to keep him warm before being taken to an ambulance for evaluation after he and others were taken from the water at La Jolla Cove. 

(San Diego Union-Tribune)

San Diego lifeguards rescued 20 Moreno Valley-area high school swim team members from the ocean off La Jolla Tuesday when they had trouble making a long-distance swim.

Two students were taken to a hospital and paramedics treated at least seven others who swallowed too much water or became chilled.

The mass rescue involved 62 swimmers from Rancho Verde High School in Moreno Valley

Lifeguards had given an ocean safety talk to the students and coaches before they set out from La Jolla Cove to swim toward a buoy a half-mile out into the ocean, lifeguard Lt. John Sandmeyer said.

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As the dozens of swimmers set off, some ran into difficulties because of the gusting winds and choppy surf. Some drifted north and were rescued closed to La Jolla Shores about 1 p.m.
Lifeguards helped 20 students back to the beach between the the Cove and the Shores and additional swimmers straggled to shore wherever they could. They were gathered at Kellogg Park and all were accounted for, San Diego Fire-Rescue Department spokesman Lee Swansom said.

He said most of the swimmers were fine, and were showering on the beach before joining the others.

Lifeguards coordinated with coaches who had a list of all the students as they confirmed that each swimmer was safe.

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Repard writes for the San Diego Union-Tribune.

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