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Falcons sweep Saugus

LA CRESCENTA — After a successful opening on the road last week, the Crescenta Valley High boys’ and girls’ swimming teams brought their dual-meet show home Tuesday and were once again victorious.

Behind double winners Sharif Alaoui and Vinh Doan and three winning relay teams, the Falcons boys turned in an impressive nonleague 115-55 win over Saugus, while the girls’ 92-78 edging of the Centurions had a bit more suspense.

“We’re still really trying to figure out where we can squeeze points out of,” Crescenta Valley girls’ Coach Robert Miller said. “In years past, I’ve tried to mix it up and make sure everybody gets to swim everything, but this year I’ve thrown that out the door. I’m going to try to keep the events consistent for each swimmer.”

The Falcons girls trailed Saugus, 18-12, after the first two events, but pulled even at 23 following a victory in the 200-yard individual medley by Michelle Du in 2 minutes, 19.24 seconds.


Still tied, at 31, after Saugus won the 50 freestyle, the Falcons took their first lead of the day, 42-36, on a victory in the 100 butterfly (1:14.54) by Christine Cho.

Crescenta Valley (2-0) reeled off victories in the next four events to claim an 80-60 advantage going into the final two events.

Keri Kunkel took first in the 100 freestyle in 57.33, followed by a victory for Ashley Kang in the 500 freestyle in 5:51.34.

Kunkel, Sandy Meidinger, Cho and Du then captured the Falcons’ only relay win of the day with a time of 1:48.44 in the 200 freestyle relay.


Du also won the 100 backstroke in 1:05.15.

The Falcons’ boys, Pacific League co-champions last season, won every event Tuesday except for the 500 freestyle.

Doan claimed victories in the 100 freestyle (51.94) and 100 backstroke (1:01.24), while Alaoui was victorious in the 200 freestyle (1:49.79) and the 100 butterfly (55.25).

Doan and Alaoui were also part of the 400 freestyle relay team, along with Tristan Winterhalter and Ted Gonder, which won in 3:35.74.

Crescenta Valley (2-0) also picked up relay victories in the 200 medley relay (1:48.00) behind Doan, Winterhalter, Mason Holland and Andrew DeJong, and in the 200 freestyle relay (1:35.94) behind Holland, Alaoui, Gonder and Mason Takidin.

“The guys were pretty excited [for this meet],” said Falcons boys’ Coach Jan Sakonju, who also got wins from DeJong in the 200 individual medley (2:05.80), Winterhalter in the 50 freestyle (23.57) and Gonder in the 100 breaststroke (1:07.46). “It’s a beautiful day for racing and Saugus always has a quality program.”

?GABRIEL RIZK covers sports. He can be reached at (818) 637-3226 or at