August 4, 2013

South Florida Aquatic Club will be well-represented by two outstanding swimmers when the Speedo Junior National Swimming Championships begin on Monday in Irvine, Calif.

Melissa Marinheiro and Julien Pinon, two rising swimmers in the sport, will compete among the nation’s best at the week-long meet at the William Woollett Jr. Aquatics Center, the same venue that hosted the U.S. Open last week.

Pinon, coming off Southern Senior Zones in Plantation after spending the past two months overseas training and competing in international meets, qualified in the 200-meter freestyle. His long course meters best time is 1:55.32.

Marinheiro will compete in four events. They are the 400-meter freestyle (4:22.89), 200-meter freestyle (2:06.22), 1500-meter freestyle (17:04.87) and 800-meter freestyle (9:04.32). Marinheiro will open with the 800 on Monday.

SOFLO age group coach Megan Garland will coach the pair during the meet.

SOFLO will be joined by other Florida Gold Coast teams St. Andrew’s Swimming, Pine Crest Swimming, Metro Aquatics, AK Sharks and Swim Fort Lauderdale.

Among top Floridians competing are Becca Man, 15, and Grant Sanders, 16, of Clearwater Aquatics and Caeleb Dressel, 16, and Santo Condorelli, 18, of Bolles and Alexander Katz, 17, of Sarasota YMCA.

It will be the last summer age group meet of the season for the pair before they turn their focus to the 2013 high school swimming season. Pinon competes for Plantation American Heritage and Marinheiro for West Broward High School.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com