SLV, SV swimmers and divers make waves at SCCAL finals
by Adam Johnson
May 08, 2014 | 5256 views | 0 0 comments | 111 111 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Scotts Valley and San Lorenzo Valley Varsity boys and girls swimming and diving teams wrapped up their team seasons with the Santa Cruz Coast Athletics League finals last Saturday. The Cougar boys' team finished in third place while the Cougar girls finished in fifth place.

For SLV, senior Josh Felts finished fourth place in the 100 back to finish as one of the top individual performers while the 400 free relay finished in third place.

"It's been a good season for us," SLV boys' Swim Coach Matt Troxell said, noting they will be returning eight or nine boys next year along with 10 boys from the junior varsity squad who will move up.

Scotts Valley's boys and girls swim teams finished in fifth and fourth place, respectively, despite limited numbers.

"The biggest challenge we have is numbers, that's what keeps us from breaking through into the top three spot," Scotts Valley Swim Coach Mike Ayers said. "We have 14 boys and girls combined for our swim program.”

With that said, however, he noted that the program has a strong returning core of swimmers.

"It's a young team, all the boys will be back next year with the exception of senior Ben Shaw," Ayers said.

For the Falcons, freshman Connor Lemmon was a standout at the SCCAL Finals, finishing in first-place in both the 200 free and the 500 free, thus qualifying for Central Coast Section playoffs.

"(Connor's) one of the most coachable kids I've had the pleasure to work with," Ayers said. "He has a pretty innate sense of swimming, so you can make technical suggestions and he'll improve right away."

Junior Matt Braverman has made great strides this season for the team, according to Ayers.

"Matt went under a minute in 100 free, which is typically a wall swimmers go through," Ayers said. "I'd expect him to be swimming even faster next year. It'd put him in the top eight in the county."

Both Scotts Valley and SLV will be sending divers to CCS as well. SLV junior Kyle Gilbert and senior Samantha Braverman of Scotts Valley each finished in first place in the boys' and girls' varsity diving competition.

"It's wonderful, it shows the quality of athlete that has stepped out on the board," Kurt Edwards said, who coaches both Scotts Valley's and SLV's dive teams.

Gilbert is in his first year of competitive diving while Braverman has dove for four years.

"(Kyle's) come on like gangbusters," Edwards said.

The CCS Finals are scheduled to take place next Friday and Saturday at the Santa Clara Swim Center. The boys will compete Friday, May 16 at 9 a.m., while the girls will compete the following day at the same time.

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