Golden Girls: Clovis West Wins Big at CIF State Swimming Championships

Members of Clovis Unified swim and dive teams competed at the C.I.F. State Swimming and Diving State Championships on May 10-11. Pictured is Clovis West’s Sophia Oka-Fedder in her race the 200 yard I.M. (Photo by Armando Negrete, Instagram @etergen_sports)

May 11, 2024 – In a stunning display of aquatic athleticism, the Clovis West High School girls’ swimming team surged to victory Saturday in the CIF State Swimming and Diving Championships, held at their home turf for the first time since 2015.

Amidst the cheers and under the watchful eyes of parents waving proudly from the stands, the Clovis West girls carved their names into the annals of swimming history, clinching the coveted gold medal in the 200-yard medley relay.

The Clovis West girls’ team of senior Hannah Marinovich, sophomore Hailey Marinovich, sophomore Audrey Hill, and sophomore Sophia Oka-Fedder, left spectators awestruck as they sliced through the water with unparalleled finesse and coordination, finishing with a first-place time of 1:41.50.

The atmosphere crackled with excitement as the hometown heroes surged ahead, their teamwork and tenacity propelling them to an unforgettable triumph.

But the glory didn’t end there for Clovis West. As the sun bathed the poolside in golden hues and the weather smiled upon the event with its benevolent warmth, the girls continued to shine as Hannah Marinovich secured a commendable third place in the Girls 100 yd Backstroke. The girls’ racked up 151 points en route to a 3rd place overall finish.

Clovis West further solidified their dominance in the water as Nathan Grabowski carved his path to glory, securing a commendable third place in the fiercely contested 50-yard freestyle Paralympic Class 1 event.

The narrative of triumph extended beyond the confines of Clovis West as well. Freshman sensation Rowyn Wilber of Clovis North emerged as a beacon of promise, her talent transcending age barriers as she showcased her skills. With a bright future ahead, Wilber’s impressive performances hinted at the heights she is destined to scale in her high school swimming career.

Moreover, the indomitable spirit of Payton Tambrilo from Clovis North illuminated the event with her extraordinary feat. Shaving off a remarkable three seconds from her personal best in the 50-yard freestyle Paralympic Class 2 event, Tambrillo left onlookers marveling at her unwavering determination.

Amidst the jubilation, the mother of Clovis West standout sophomore Tobin Reed beamed with pride as she pointed out her towering son amidst the throng of athletes on stage. “He’s the very tall kid in the back there,” she remarked with maternal affection as she recounted her son’s swim off the day before to secure his spot in one of the events. “He did really well,” her voice filled with admiration.

Speaking of the Clovis West team’s spectacular performances, Helaine underscored the significance of the home advantage, describing it as a “blessing” for the dedicated swimmers who call Clovis West their home.

When speaking of the achievements of the girls from Clovis West, Helaine emphasized the unique bond and talent of the young athletes. “These kids come from all over the state, and they are mostly seniors and juniors. The Clovis West kids, three of them are sophomores and one is a senior. So, they can do this again,” she remarked with a hint of excitement for the future.

As the day drew to a close, and the echoes of cheers faded into the evening, one thing remained abundantly clear: the CIF State Swimming and Diving Championships were not merely about winning medals or setting records. They were a celebration of community and the indomitable spirit of competition.

In the words of the CIF’s public service announcement, “How we behave at games is a reflection of who we are.” And on this day, the community of Clovis showcased the very best of themselves, embodying the true essence of sportsmanship and camaraderie.