Buoyed by five event wins from freshman Ryan Wang, The Pasadena City College men's swim team took second place for its highest team finish ever at the annual Mt. San Antonio Invitational meet held Feb. 22-24. PCC totaled 571.5 points to place behind runaway winner Orange Coast (1,023.5) and ahead of the other 14 scoring colleges.
The Lancers also scored 5.5 points more than third-place host Mt. SAC as the two teams figure to battle it out for both the dual season title and the South Coast Conference Championships crown. The men's team has never won the conference team title since joining the SCC in 1987.
On Day 2 of the meet, Wang soared with four event wins, smashing the meet record in the 100-yard individual medley (53.91 seconds), and also placing first in the 200 IM (1:55.45), 50 breaststroke (27.41), and 100 breaststroke (58.44). On the final day, Wang added his victory in the 200 breaststroke at 2:09.03 and he picked up a second in the 400 IM at 4:09.05. The Arcadia High phenom also was third in the 1,650 freestyle at 16:58.12. He is the first Lancer since Tai Nuntapramote to win five events in the Mt. SAC Invitational back in 2009.
Sophomore Samuel Jo added a win in the 100-backstroke (52.83) and despite breaking the meet record in the 50-back settled for second (24.72) to Santa Monica College's Colin Casey (24.68) in that event. He later captured the 200 backstroke title with a time of 1:55.19. Jo also finished fourth in the 100 IM, fifth in the 200 freestyle (1:46.66) where he placed behind four Orange Coast swimmers, sixth in the 200 IM (2:01.78), and seventh in the 100 freestyle (49.31).
Freshman Roman Rostomyan placed second in the 50 butterfly (23.81), hit the wall in third in the 100 butterfly (52.55), was tied for fourth in the 50 freestyle (22.45), and scored seventh in the 500 freestyle (4:59.49). Letterman Sydney Odent placed fourth in the 1,650 freestyle (17:12.06), fifth in the 400 IM (4:26.01), sixth in the 50 breaststroke (29.29), ninth in the 500 freestyle (5:01.54), ninth in the 200 breaststroke (2:22.27), and 10th in the 100 breaststroke (1:03.77). Sophomore Jayson Wilia was 10th in the 200 backstroke (2:08.12). Second-year swimmer Narek Yeghikyan took ninth in the mile event at 18:04.73. The PCC 400 freestyle squad finished third at 3:16.97.
"Really, Ryan put together one of the great collective performances we've had a meet," said PCC head coach Terry Stoddard. "As a team, it says a lot for us to place second. Certainly, we are poised now to compete in our conference season. We have goals we can achieve with everyone staying healthy and it should be an exciting dual meet year. We have swimmers that can place high in most of the events and some depth to pick up more points."
On Friday, Mar. 2, the Lancers hosts El Camino and Long Beach City Colleges to open the conference season in a double dual meet. Swims begin at 12:30 p.m. at the PCC Aquatic Center.