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CVHS swim program short on numbers, not talent
Central Valley High School's varsity swim program has only 13 members this year so its focus will be on improvement and individual success.

"We don't have a ton of kids out here," said Sarah Willems, third-year head coach of the Hawks. "But they're all motivated."

Jesse Magana (Jr.), Thomas Rogers (So.), Braden Rambo (So.) and Tyler Owens (Sr.) make up the boys team, which totaled just five points while finishing in last place at the 2011 Western Athletic Conference Championships.

Jesse, Thomas and Braden are returners.

Magana placed 14th in the 200 free at the WAC finals.

Rogers placed 20th in the 100 breast and 26th in the 50 free.

Rambo placed 21st in the 100 breast.

Owens is a newcomer.

Victoria Gutierrez (Sr.), Catalina Oney (Sr.), Kathleen Rambo (Sr.), Savanna Alvear (Jr.), Coralyn Brown (Jr.), Deja Jackson (Jr.), Marissa Ortega (Jr.), Stephany Navarro (So.) and Sorrayar Sounthala (Fr.) are on the girls team, which placed fourth at the WAC finals a season ago.

Alvear took third in the 100 back and fifth in the 200 free.

Gutierrez placed 22nd in the 50 free.

Navarro placed 35th in the 50 free.

Brown, Jackson, Oney, Ortega and Sounthala are newcomers.

"Some people think swimming is easy," Rogers said. "Once they try it, it's a lot harder than it looks."

"Everyone is pretty much new," Willems added. "They'll swim in what I need them to do."

The Hawks lack numbers for one reason according to

Willems and Co.

"If we had our own pool at Central Valley, we'd have a lot more people," Rogers said.

"It would be more convenient," Magana added.

"A lot of the kids can't drive so they can't get themselves here," Willems said. "Of course I'd like to have that (a home facility) for my team. There's no money for it."

Central Valley stages its practices and home meets at Ceres High.

The Hawks WAC dual-meet schedule includes clashes with the Bulldogs, Central Catholic Raiders, Livingston Wolves, Patterson Tigers, Los Banos Tigers and Pacheco Panthers.

The league championships will be hosted by Pacheco High School on April 28. Los Banos won the team title in 2011. Central Valley finished ahead of Central Catholic, Livingston and Pacheco.

"I'm just looking for people to improve on their times," Willems said. "I want the kids to have fun. I have expectations for all of them."