PASA girls successfully defend national swim title


Setting two national age-group records in relays and clocking the fastest time in history in another, Palo Alto Stanford Aquatics successfully defended its girls' 15-18 age-group team title at the AT&T Short Course National Championships this past weekend in Columbus, Ohio.

PASA, which won the 2009 championship on the very last relay, secured the title much sooner this time with record-breaking performances and 314.5 points -- well in front of runnerup Fullerton Area Swim Team (FAST).

The PASA contingent of seven swimmers included Gunn junior Julia Ama, Woodside junior Alicia Grima, Sacred Heart Prep freshman Ally Howe, Paly senior Sarah Liang, St. Francis senior (and Stanford-bound) Maddy Schaefer, Burlingame junior Naomi Thomas and Palo Alto junior Jasmine Tosky.

Among the highlights:

PASA finished third in the 200-yard free relay with the team of Schaefer, Howe, Liang and Tosky clocking the fastest 18-under club relay in history (1:30.15). The time, however, can't be considered the 15-18 national record because Howe is still 14 years old.

PASA did set a 15-18 national record in the 400 free relay as the team of Schaefer, Ama, Grima and Tosky clocked 3:16.58 for third place. The national record also fell in the 800 free relay where Grima, Tosky, Ama and Schaefer went 7:13.98 while taking fifth.

The PASA 400 medley relay team of Howe, Liang, Tosky and Schaefer finished fifth in 3:40.33 while the 200 medley squad of Howe, Liang, Tosky and Schaefer finished ninth in 1:41.40. All the relay teams that finished ahead of PASA were colleges.

Individually, Schaefer- tied for second in the 50-yard free in 22.18 (22.12 in the prelims) and was the 18-under national champion. She also took fourth in the 100 free (48.24) and ninth in the 100 back in 54.05 (53.53 in swim-off).

Tosky was seventh in the 200 IM (1:57.59), sixth in the 400 IM (4:11.34) as the 18-under national champ, second in the 200 Free (1:44.63) and fifth in the 200 fly (1:55.07) as the 18-under national champ.

Howe clocked 22.97 in the 50 free to set a 13-14 Pacific Swimming record.

The meet was a solid tuneup for Tosky, who will leave Saturday for the World Short Course Championships next week in Dubai.

Also at the Short Course Nationals, Stanford grads Julia Smit and Elaine Breeden wrapped up their final day with second-place finishes while Cardinal grad Markus Rogan won the 100 back in 1:40.11. Smit was runnerup in the 400 IM (4:03.55) while Breeden took second in the 100 fly (52.31).

At Sunday's USA Long Course Invitational, also in Columbus, Stanford grad Eugene Godsoe won the men's 100-meter backstroke in 55.95.

-- Palo Alto Online Sports

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