Falcons “swim” their way to their next meet

Denny Cristales

Some “tired” swimming is what’s expected from the men’s swimming team after an emphasis on long-distance swimming has been integrated to practice sessions in preparation for a South Coast Conference meet at Rio Hondo Friday, Feb. 13.

The team is coming off a pentathlon non-scoring meet, a competition that focused on sprinting races and had no factor in regular season standings.

Head coach Joe Abing finds that the team has a strength in sprinting, but that the squad still has “a lot of work to do” before it reaches an optimal level of endurance.

“We’re not where we need to be, but what we’ve been doing this week, we’ll know after Friday how we truly fare in the long-distance swimming,” he said. “Right now, everyone collectively knows we still have ways to go before we reach that potential.”

And Abing has issued longer intervals in practice in order to make sure the team fits his standard of “potential.”

Veteran swimmer Joshua Owens echoes Abing’s words, factoring in that a focus on sprints has not allowed the team to properly focus on longer yardage.

“The more conditioning, the better we’ll get,” Owens said. “In our last meet, it was a lot of sprints, a lot of 50s, so everyone is working on more distance swimming and working on longer sets. It’s going to be a whole lot different than last week. The feeling is mutual (with coach).”

For the meet Friday, Abing mentioned a majority of the teams that will be faced throughout the entire season would be there for competition.

So, it’ll give the Falcons a better understanding as to how each opposing team fares and where each one stacks up against Cerritos College.

“Our focus is really more on the big picture still. It’ll give us a better idea where everyone in the conference stacks up against us.”

He went on to say that this meet is more about a grasping of experience, more than anything else.

Swimmers are still getting adjusted, as all are swimming fixed practice sets and not necessarily focusing on specialties for each individual person.

Veteran Fernando Lua is a part of that, too, as his long-distance specialty from last season has dipped, he notes.

Owens breaks down the difference of sprinting and long-distance preparation.

“Usually if we’re doing sprints, we’re going to do pure yardage and everything fast paced,” he said. “But, long distance is just more yardage and swimming over and over and over, continuously, and working on technique as opposed to just actual sprinting.”


Abing broke down key swimmers for the team:

  • Jason Lee
  • Angel Rojas
  • Marlon Moreno
  • Joshua Ownens