WRITTEN BY SHARON ROBB
December 31, 2010
1.Coral Springs Swim Club and Comets Swim Team merge and become South Florida Aquatic Club in May, combining more than 450 swimmers, 20 employees including two world-class coaches, two 50-meter Olympic-size pools, three 25-meter and 25-yard pools, and diving and teaching pools at the Coral Springs Aquatic Complex, Mullins Park and Academic Village Pool. After only eight months, USA Swimming awards SOFLO Level 1 club status.
2.After undergoing state-of-the-art reconstructive knee surgery and rehabbing, five-time Olympian Dara Torres announces on Live with Regis and Kelly talk show that she is going to attempt to make her sixth Olympic team at age 45. “My heart and head are like, “Yeah, let’s go for it,” Torres said.
3.After a disappointing summer, Lindsey McKnight bounces back and enjoys her best high school season ever, winning four gold medals for American Heritage. As a junior, she won two individual and two relay state titles with All-American times and broke a state record in the 200-yard medley relay. “I am not sleeping tonight…it was such a fun night,” McKnight said of her finest state meet performance in three years.
4.At 14, Emily Kopas makes her senior national debut in Columbus, Ohio and makes “C” final. Calling it “a privilege” to qualify for seniors, Kopas, the youngest swimmer in the field, breaks the 200-yard breaststroke club record twice and posts career-best 2:16.02 in the championship final.
5.Two-time Olympian Alia Atkinson is first Jamaican swimmer to compete in a championship final at the FINA World Short Course Championships in Dubai. The two-time Olympian qualified for two finals.
6. Two-time Olympian Vlad Polyakov wins silver medal at Asian Games, bronze medal at U.S. Nationals and finals at World Short Course Championships.
7.Loai Tashkandi of Saudi Arabia makes history by winning three gold medals in national record-breaking swims at the Arabian Gulf State Championships.
8.Tyla Martin, representing Trinidad and Tobago at age 12, broke her own national record in the 100-meter butterfly at the Caribbean Island Swimming Championships in Havana, Cuba and was the 11-12 overall girls champion at the CARIFTA Championships, her first international meet.
9.Academic Village Pool undergoes major renovation, upgrading the pool deck expansion, stadium lighting, cost-effective Geothermal heating and cooling for the pool, parent seating area with easy access, bleacher seating, crossfit exercise and dryland stations with spinning bikes, and brick paver donation walkway.
10. tie, In only her freshman year at Florida State, Tiffany Oliver is named Atlantic Coast Conference Female Performer of the Week after breaking the school record in the 100-yard freestyle (49.26) and leading the Seminoles’ upset over the defending national women’s champion University of Florida.
10. tie, At 46, SOFLO father and masters swimmer Rich Nixon enjoys his first Top 10 finish and career-best performance at the Ford Ironman World Championships in Hawaii. In his fifth Hawaii appearance, he was sixth in the 45-49 age group and 153rd overall among a field of more than 1,800 in 9 hours, 28 minutes and 33 seconds.
There is no doubt South Florida Aquatic Club shined in its first year and 2011 will be the year it shines even brighter. Thank you swimmers, parents and coaches for a great year.
Happy New Year!!!
Sharon Robb can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.