HIGH SCHOOL MEET OF THE WEEK American Heritage Wins Season Opener, SOFLO’s – McKnight, Torres, Armstrong Victorious

HIGH SCHOOL MEET OF THE WEEK American Heritage Wins Season Opener, SOFLO’s – McKnight, Torres, Armstrong Victorious


September 8, 2010

PLANTATION—With a good balance of veteran and young athletes, American Heritage successfully opened its 2010 high school swimming and diving season on Wednesday.

American Heritage swept Archbishop McCarthy, 128-52 to win the girls competition and 108-72 to win the boys competition.

South Florida Aquatic Club swimmers Lindsey McKnight, Kaitlin Armstrong and Luke Torres won four individual events, five relays, took one second and a pair of thirds.

McKnight, two-time High School Swimmer of the Year, made her debut for her new American Heritage High School team with victories in the 200-yard individual medley (2:11.08) and 100-yard freestyle (53.68) and was a member of the winning 200-yard medley and 400-yard freestyle relays. 

“I really like it here, everyone is so nice and welcoming,” McKnight said. “Today I mainly tried to work on my stroke which is what these meets are most helpful for. I felt pretty good, maybe a little tired from getting back into shape, but I was happy.”

Torres won the 100-yard butterfly (53.34) and 100-yard breaststroke (1:04.05) and was a member of the winning 200-yard medley and 400-yard freestyle relays.

“I am happy, I had pretty decent times for my first high school meet,” Torres said. “This summer I did pretty well so I think I am where I should be right now.”

Armstrong, a freshman at Archbishop McCarthy, made her high school debut as a member of the winning 200-yard freestyle relay (1:54.15). She also finished second in the 100-yard freestyle (1:00.63) and took thirds on both the 200-yard medley and 400-yard freestyle relays.

McKnight and Torres train at SOFLO’s Coral Springs Aquatic Complex and Armstrong trains at SOFLO’s Academic Village Pool.

Other girls individual winners for American Heritage were U.S. junior national team member Lauren Driscoll, back from her outstanding summer of national and international meets; Jessica Randolph, Chantal Bouthillier and Dania Banks.

American Heritage boys winners were Juan Gonzalez, Jose Serra, Daniel Spas and Alex Rivas. The boys team wasn’t at full-strength swimming without freshman Yousef Alaskari, who was getting his school physical.

It was more of a get-to-know swimmers meet for American Heritage coach Nobutaka Tan and his coaching staff.

“I saw a lot of kids running around and I said, ‘Who is this?’” Tan said. “It was good to get the first meet out of the way. Some of the kids haven’t swum short course since spring. I gave them a two-to-three week break so last week we seriously started to get back into training.

“I wasn’t sure how our kids would do but I was happy with the start,” Tan said.

Tan said he wants his swimmers to get to know each other and take it “one meet at a time,” and not worry about any high expectations for the post-season.

“These meets are preparation for the large meet coming up,” Tan said. “Along the way, if our leaders on the team like Lauren or Lindsey can bring one person to state with them, somebody new, that makes it something worthwhile. They are going to be great motivators for a lot of the younger swimmers who look up to them.”

One of the meet’s surprise was junior Jose Serra, coming off a shoulder injury. He recently returned to training. “He came back really well, I know that Danny Keegan is a really strong swimmer so for him to leave Danny behind on the freestyle leg (of the 200 IM) was a good job.”

Tan is looking forward to swimming some strong teams early in the season to prepare for districts, regions and states.

“I would rather have our swimmers go and swim with the fast kids so they don’t wait until the last minute,” Tan said. “I remember last year by the second or third meet we were swimming Pine Crest.”

American Heritage will be tested in its next meet next Wednesday at Gulliver Prep. Archbishop McCarthy will compete in Saturday’s Westminster Academy Relays.

Other top SOFLO swimmers at local high school meets were:

Keegan Boisson-Yates of Taravella won the 200-yard freestyle (1:54.33) and 100-yard freestyle (50.71) in the Trojans’ narrow 92-88 loss to South Plantation.

Marc Rojas of Pembroke Pines Charter won the 100-yard breaststroke (1:04.94) in his team’s 59-42 victory over Fort Lauderdale.

Amie Lunak of Pembroke Pines Charter won the 50-yard freestyle (26.88).

Benjamin Neubauer of Coral Glades won the 200-yard individual medley in 2:13.84 in his team’s losses to Douglas and Monarch.

Marco Hosfeld of Douglas won the 200-yard freestyle (1:52.91) and teammate Josh Cutter won the 100-yard freestyle (56.08) and 100-yard breaststroke (1:12.15) in their team’s wins over Monarch, 127-72 and Coral Glades, 106-72.

Douglas team captain Gina Gautieri won the 500-yard freestyle (5:37.70) and 100-yard breaststroke (1:12.78). Teammates Linea Cutter won the 200-yard freestyle (2:06), Anne Kuczynski won the 200-yard individual medley (2:26.75) and Emily Greenwood won the 50-yard freestyle (27.06) and 100-yard backstroke (1:08.69) in their team’s victories over Monarch, 117-60 and Coral Glades, 130-45.

Katie Brennan of St. Thomas Aquinas won the 500-yard freestyle (5:30.32) and teammate Mia Fiorenzi won the 100-yard breaststroke (1:13.12) in the Raiders’ wins over Fort Lauderdale, 81-27 and Pembroke Pines Charter, 80-24.

Alyssa Hunter of West Broward won the 200-yard freestyle (2:08.34) and 100-yard butterfly (1:05.60). Teammates Leonie Davies won the 200-yard individual medley (2:23.36) and 500-yard freestyle (5:35.74) and Mady Fernandez won the 100-yard backstroke (1:08.95) in West Broward’s wins over Taravella, 136-37 and South Plantation, 113-72.


American Heritage 128, Archbishop McCarthy 52

200-yard medley relay: 1. American Heritage (Driscoll, Bouthillier, McKnight, Randolph) 1:53.22, 2. American Heritage 2:07.43, 3. Archbishop McCarthy 2:07.93.

200-yard freestyle: 1. Driscoll, AH 1:56.72, 2. Pacitti, AH 2:08.96, 3. Banks, AH 2:10.09.

200-yard individual medley: 1. McKnight, AH 2:11.08, 2. Rodriguez, AH, 2:29.32, 3. Mila, AM 2:44.65.

50-yard freestyle: 1. Randolph, AH 26.40, 2. Bess, AH 28.81, 3. Tonyan, AH 28.84.

1-meter springboard diving: 1. Clayton, AM 189.60, 2. Walker, AH 160.60.

100-yard butterfly: 1. Bouthillier, AH 1:04.50, 2. Rodriguez, AH 1:05.31, 3. Gomes, AH 1:05.84.

100-yard freestyle: 1. McKnight, AH 53.68, 2. Armstrong, AM 1:00.63, 3. Jeong, AM 1:07.90.

500-yard freestyle: 1. Randolph, AH 5:14.12, 2. Pacitti, AH 5:44.93, 3. Bayerdelle, AM 6:05.18.

200-yard freestyle relay: 1. Archbishop McCarthy (Plasencia, Mila, Armstrong, Bentacur) 1:54.15, 2. American Heritage 2:20.31, 3. Archbishop McCarthy 2:37.43.

100-yard backstroke: 1. Driscoll, AH 1:00.37, 2. Cooper, AM 1:14.34, 3. Tonyan, AH 1:17.71.

100-yard breaststroke: 1. Banks, AH 1:11.46, 2. Bouthillier, AH 1:16.58, 3. Walker, AH 1:24.65.

400-yard freestyle relay: 1. American Heritage (Randolph, Driscoll, Bouthillier, McKnight) 3:44.12, 2. American Heritage 4:10.25, 3. Archbishop McCarthy 4:11.75.


American Heritage 108, Archbishop McCarthy 72

200-yard medley relay: 1. American Heritage (Serra, Torres, Nothard, Spas) 1:43.65, 2. Archbishop McCarthy 1:50.21, 3. American Heritage 1:56.37.

200-yard freestyle: 1. Gonzalez, AH 1:25.87, 2. Bronca, AH 2:02.93, 3. Holowicki, AM 2:03.25.

200-yard individual medley: 1. Serra, AH 2:03.96, 2. Keegan, AM 2:06.18, 3. Mila, AM 2:28.18.

50-yard freestyle: 1. Spas, AH 22.02, 2. Nothard, AH 23.46, 3. Hall, AM 24.34.

1-meter springboard diving: None.

100-yard butterfly: 1. Torres, AH 53.34, 2. Nothard, AH 56.12, 3. Gonzalez, AM 1:01.62.

100-yard freestyle: 1. Spas, AH 48.24, 2. Hall, AM 52.22, 3. Osborne, AH 55.96.

500-yard freestyle: 1. Rivas, AH 6:33.01, 2. Holowicki, AM 5:42.37, 3. Lubic, AM 5:38.25.

200-yard freestyle relay: 1. American Heritage (Bronca, Serra, Clark, Nothard) 1:39.68, 2. American Heritage 1:52.15, 3. Archbishop McCarthy 1:52.65.

100-yard backstroke: 1. Serra, AH 1:00.74, 2. Bronca, AH 1:05.68, 3. Wattigney, AM 1:08.71.

100-yard breaststroke: 1. Torres, AH 1:04.05, 2. Keegan, AM 1:05.90, 3. Mila, AM 1:15.06.

400-yard freestyle relay: 1. American Heritage (Serra, Nothard, Torres, Spas) 3:30.49, 2. Archbishop McCarthy 3:43.40, 3. Archbishop McCarthy 3:46.06.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com.


High School Sports Participation On The Rise, Swimming Ranks In Top 10

High School Sports Participation On The Rise, Swimming Ranks In Top 10


September 8, 2010

For the 21st consecutive school year, participation in high school sports increased in 2009-10, eclipsing the 7.6 million mark for the first time in history despite the economy and school cutbacks.

Based on figures from the 50 state high school athletic and activity associations that are members of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), participation for the 2009-10 school year reached a record-breaking total of 7,628,377 participants, according to the 2009-10 High School Athletics Participation Survey conducted by the NFHS.

Boys and girls participation figures also reached respective all-time highs with 4,455,740 boys and 3,172,637 girls participating in 2009-10. Boys participation increased by 33,078 this year, while the girls figure increased by 58,546.

“It is a significant achievement for our member state associations that in these difficult economic times, student participation increased,” said NFHS Executive Director Bob Gardner.

“This reinforces the values that high school sports provide as part of the education of our students. The NFHS actively promotes participation in, and support for, the programs throughout the nation.”

Based on the survey, 55.1 percent of students enrolled in high schools participate in athletics including swimming and diving, which emphasizes and reinforces the idea that high school sports continue to have a significant role in student involvement in schools across the country.

Outdoor track and field gained the most combined participants in 2009-10, with an increase of 25,561 participants, followed by soccer with 19,597 combined participants and cross country (11,925).

In girls sports, soccer gained the most participants (11,582), followed by outdoor track and field (11,445) and fast-pitch softball (9,290). Outdoor track and field led the way in boys sports with 14,116 additional participants, followed by cross country (8,156) and soccer (8,015).

The top participation sports for boys remained the same from 2008-09: 11-player football led the way with 1,109,278 participants, followed by outdoor track and field (572,123), basketball (540,207), baseball (472,644), soccer (391,839), wrestling (272,890), cross country (239,608), tennis (162,755), golf (157,756), and swimming and diving (131,376).

Outdoor track and field continued to be the leading sport for girls with 469,177 participants. Second was basketball (439,550), followed by volleyball (403,985), fast-pitch softball (378,211), soccer (356,116), cross country (201,968), tennis (182,395), swimming and diving (158,419), competitive spirit squads (123,644) and golf (70,872).

The top 10 states based on combined participation also remained the same from last year’s survey.

Texas led the way with a combined total of 780,721 participants. California was second with 771,465, followed by New York (379,677), Illinois (344,257), Ohio (334,797), Pennsylvania (317,426), Michigan (313,818), New Jersey (253,097), Florida (247,428) and Minnesota (230,043).

The participation survey has been compiled since 1971 by the NFHS through numbers it receives from its member associations.   


1. Basketball 17,969    
2. Track and Field – Outdoor 16,011    
3. Baseball 15,786    
4. Football – 11-Player 14,226    
5. Cross Country 13,942    
6. Golf 13,693    
7. Soccer 11,375    
8. Wrestling 10,363    
9. Tennis 9,916    
10. Swimming and Diving 6,820    


1. Football – 11-Player 1,109,278
2. Track and Field – Outdoor 572,123
3. Basketball 540,207
4. Baseball 472,644
5. Soccer 391,839
6. Wrestling 272,890
7. Cross Country 239,608
8. Tennis 162,755
9. Golf 157,756
10. Swimming and Diving 131,376


1. Basketball 17,711  
2. Track and Field – Outdoor 15,923  
3. Volleyball 15,382  
4. Softball – Fast Pitch 15,298  
5. Cross Country 13,809  
6. Soccer 10,901  
7. Tennis 10,166  
8. Golf 9,651  
9. Swimming and Diving 7,171  
10. Competitive Spirit Squads 4,879  


1. Track and Field – Outdoor 469,177  
2. Basketball 439,550  
3. Volleyball 403,985  
4. Softball – Fast Pitch 378,211  
5. Soccer 356,116  
6. Cross Country 201,968  
7. Tennis 182,395  
8. Swimming and Diving 158,419  
9. Competitive Spirit Squads 123,644  
10. Golf 70,872  

Source: National Federation of State High School Association.