Going into his 21st season in charge of the women's swimming and diving team at Pasadena City College in 2020, head coach Terry Stoddard has been the only director of the school's Aquatic Center since it came into use in 2000. A man of many hats, Stoddard also coaches the men's swim team and the Lancers women's water polo team in the Fall season.
From 2013 through the 2019 season, Stoddard raised the level of PCC women's swimming to an elite status in the state. In the past seven years, the Lancers rewrote nearly every school swimming record. Stoddard coached 80 individual women's conference champions, 55 in the past seven seasons. He has 143 conference titles combined in men and women.
In 2019, Lancer Carmen Ung extended an epic streak of South Coast Conference Swimmers of the Year, now at seven straight years as she was named Co-Swimming MVP after winning three events at the '19 SCC Championships. Ung shattered school records in the 100-yard and 200-yard breaststroke events, and swam the second fastest 50 freestyle in PCC history. At the CCCAA State Championships held at De Anza College, Ung earned the silver medal in the 100 breaststroke and had fourth place medals in the 200 breaststroke and 50 freestyle. With only Ung qualifying, her points allowed PCC a 21st place state finish.
In 2018, for the third time in five years, Stoddard coached a double state champion in Melissa Cienega, who captured the 200 and 500 freestyle titles at the CCCAA State Championship meet after winning the 500-yard and 1,650-yard freestyle state titles as a freshman. Cienega was the second PCC swimmer in as many years to be named PCC Women's Athlete of the Year for all sports (2016-2017) after Ariahn Givens won the award in 2015-2016. Shannon Cheung, the school's first-ever women's state champion and double champ also won that prestigious honor in 2013-2014.
Cienega became PCC's fourth consecutive 2-time, SCC Swimmer of the Year. Cienega joined the elite trio of Givens (2015-16), Connie Peng (2014-15) and Cheung (2013-14) as double SCC top swimmer honorees. All the more remarkable in PCC's conference accolades is that from 2014-17, the Lancers had two swimmers share the SCC SOTY awars. Cienega and teammate Jocelyn Jo were the latest South Coast Co-Swimmers of the Year in 2017. Liza Echeverria was a single Co-Swimmer of the Year with Givens in 2016. The remarkable streak of five years of PCC co-swimmers trophies ended in '18 as Mt. SAC's Ashley Tse shared the award this past season with Cienega. However, the SCC Swimmer of Year streak for the Lancers is intact at seven years running.
The Lancers beat their highest finish in school history three years running with their fifth place at the '15 CCCAA State Meet after a sixth in 2014 and eighth in 2013. The team placed 12th at the 2016 state meet, and would have finished again in the state top 10 if not for a technical DQ in a prelim relay. PCC settled for 13th at both the 2017 and 2018 meets.
In '16, the Lancers set a new standard by winning 11 events at the SCC Championships, including all five relays. The team took second place due to the NCAA points system that favors deeper rosters over higher-placing success of top swimmers. PCC also had an impressive 18-dual meet winning streak stopped on the final conference day of the season by South Coast champ Mt. San Antonio and by the slimmest of margins, 138-136. Stoddard was honored as SCC Women's Swim Coach of the Year for the second straight season.
The team's success has produced numerous state top 8 individual medals, including a school record 11 in 2015. PCC went undefeated at 8-0 to win the dual season South Coast Conference title before taking second at the SCC Finals in a fierce battle against champion El Camino.
In 2017, Cienega broke three school records in the 200 and 500 freestyle, and the 400 individual medley where her 4:39.30 also broke the South Coast Conference record. Jo shattered the school record in the 200 breaststroke. In 2016, Givens scored a silver medal at the state meet in the 200-yard freestyle. She broke the PCC 50 freestyle record in taking fourth at state in 24.48.
In '14-15, Peng set four school records, including two SCC records in the 50 and 100 backstroke events. In 2015, Tiffany Wong set a conference record in the 200 butterfly.
In 2014, Cheung performed a PCC first in winning the first two state titles ever by a Lancers woman when she took gold medals in both the 200 IM and 1,650 freestyle events. Peng won the silver medal in the 100 backstroke and 100 butterfly. The Lancers shattered an amazing six conference records at the SCC Finals. Cheung set new conference standards in the 200 IM and 1,650 freestyle.
In 2013, despite carrying a tiny roster of four swimmers and one diver, Stoddard's troops won 10 events at the SCC Finals, led by Cheung, who became the first PCC swimmer to break a conference record with her mark in winning the 200-yard IM. She would go on to take the silver medal in the state 200 IM.
Overall, the '13 women's team recorded 14 school records, including all five of the relays. All 14 marks were among the top 100 times in state history, including Cheung's eighth-best state mark in the 200 IM (2:06.58, busting her conference record). Cheung still holds school records in the 200 IM, and 500/1,650 freestyles. Cheung recently finished her swim career at UCLA.
Emily Frederick, who also won three individual events at the '13 SCC Finals, set then three PCC school records, including two that she still holds in the 100 Freestyle and 100 IM. Arolyn Basham became the school record holder in the 50/100 breaststrokes. Cheung, Frederick, Basham, and Paige Watroba made up the "Fearless Four," a quartet that set then records in the 200, 400, 800 freestyle relay and 200/400 medley relays.
The team's diver, Gwen McKinley, was a school valedictorian with a 4.0 GPA, a rare accomplishment for a PCC student-athlete. All five women's team members carried a GPA above 3.4, including Frederick matching McKinley as an 4.0 honors student.
Stoddard guided the 2010 SCC Women's Diver of the Year in Merry Sanders.
He coached the women's swim team to the school's first-ever South Coast Conference Finals championship in 2003. He guided the SCC Swimmer of the Year in Lancer Lorean Mapp. She was later honored by the state as a Pepsi Scholar-Athlete Honor Roll selection and went on to swim at Cal State Northridge.
Stoddard served as President of the California Community College Swimming and Diving Coaches Association, a term that ran from 2007-2009.
STODDARD'S COACHING HISTORY PRIOR TO PCC
Before coming to PCC, Stoddard served as the head coach for Rose Bowl Aquatics in Pasadena from 1992-97. On the national level, Stoddard was an assistant coach for the U.S. women's team at the Pan American Games in 1991. An adviser for the Polish Olympic swim team, he coached two medalists in Rafel Szukala (1992, silver medal, 100-yard butterfly) and Artur Wojdat (1988, bronze medal, 400-freestyle).
A club coach in Mission Viejo, Stoddard directed back-to-back U.S. junior national championship teams for men and combined in 1986-87.
At the prep level, Stoddard was head coach at Buena High School (1977-78) and later a coach at Capistrano Valley High from 1978-85. The Capistrano girls' team finished as CIF runner-up five times and the '81 team set a then national prep record in the 200-yard medley relay. He directed seven individual CIF champions in his tenure there. He also coached boys water polo at Capistrano Valley from 1978-80.
Coach Stoddard File
4-Time South Coast Conference Women's Coach of the Year, 2003, 2013, 2015, 2016
SCC Dual Team Champions, 2003, 2015
SCC Finals Team Champion, 2003
Coached 6 Individual State Champions
Coached 80 Individual Women's Conference Champions (143 combined men/women)
Coached 10 SCC Women's Swimmers of the Year, 2003, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019
[*from '14-17, PCC has had two different swimmers share the award]
Coached 3 PCC Women's Athlete of the Year Award Winners, 2014, 2016, 2017