By Sharon Robb

November 23, 2013

South Florida Aquatic Club is for real.

SOFLO continues to lead after Day Three of the 23rd annual Speedo Winter Championships at Plantation Aquatic Complex.

The highlight of the day for SOFLO swimmers was the boys’ 10-and-under 200-yard medley relay breaking a 30-year-old Florida Gold Coast record.

The relay of John Paul Handal, 10, Michael Arias, 10, Joseph Lee, 10 and Marcus Franco, 10, won the event in 2:08.78, crushing the previous record of 2:10.49 set in 1980 by Hurricane Aquatics.

The time also broke the FGC open record of 2:12.06 set by SOFLO (Marcus Franco, Rafael Rodriguez, Leonardo Mateus, Nicolas Rossi) in 2012.

“It was unique because we broke the record again with four different boys,” SOFLO coach Chris Anderson said.

Swimming with both confidence and determination, SOFLO dominated the competition throughout Saturday’s prelims and finals.

SOFLO leads the combined team standings with 1,341, the only team in the field of 48 teams with more than 1,000 points. First-year club Azura Florida Aquatics is second with 781 and St. Andrew’s Swimming is third with 690.

SOFLO, defending girls champion, leads the girls team standings with 609 points ahead of St. Andrew’s (414) and Coral Springs Swim Club (366.50).

SOFLO boys lead with 732 points ahead of Azura (601) and Metro Aquatics (377.50).

“For sure we are real,” Anderson said. “We have a pretty good little team doing the job. Saturday was another wonderful session, the kids never let up and seem to be excited about swimming strong. I hope people are starting to figure out that we have a good team and we can really coach these kids to do some really good stuff.

“The kids are really stepping it up,” Anderson said. “They have a lot of confidence and have been battle-tested. Last year I said Winter Champs was our best meet and our clientele didn’t believe that. We have improved upon that as far as depth and overall as far as our age group and senior swimmers.

“We are a very well-balanced team from our 9-year-olds to the older senior groups and that’s why we are doing so well. We are maturing right in front of our eyes at this year’s Winter Champs. This is what we are really about.”

Other top SOFLO performances were:

SOFLO won the girls’ 10-and-under 200-yard medley relay in 2:17.37 with Kayla Cunningham, Katrina Del Vecchio, Sara Quintero and Elizabeth Chevaldova.

SOFLO won the boys’ 11-12 200-yard medley relay in 1:56.90 with Leonardo Mateus, Brandon Moran, Bryant Segui and Rafael Rodriguez.

SOFLO won the boys’ 10-and-under 200-yard freestyle relay in 1:55.38 with Nicolas Rossi, Marcus Franco, Joseph Lee and Michael Arias.

SOFLO won the girls’ 13-14 200-yard medley relay in 1:56.15 with Kelley Heron, Jessica Rodriguez, Star Fassler and Stephanie Mlujeak.

SOFLO won the boys’ 13-14 200-yard medley relay in 1:44.22 with Juan Lucas, Ervin Marin, CJ Kopecki and Kevin Porto.

SOFLO boys won the 13-14 200-yard freestyle relay in 1:33.02 with Ervin Marin, CJ Kopecki, Kevin Porto and Juan Lucas.

Michael Arias and Nicolas Rossi finished 1-2 in the 200-yard freestyle in 2:08.89 and 2:10.44.

Vanessa Mesa won the 200-yard freestyle in 2:06.98.

Rafael Rodriguez won the 200-yard freestyle in 1:58.43, 50-yard butterfly in 28.08 and 100-yard individual medley in 1:03.23.

Kathleen Golding won the 200-yard freestyle in 1:53.66 and 200-yard breaststroke in 2:26.34.

Jessica Rodriguez won the 200-yard breaststroke in 2:22.74.

Joseph Lee and Marcus Franco finished 1-2 in the 100-yard backstroke in 1:10.99 and 1:11.39.

Leonardo Mateus won the 100-yard backstroke in 1:05.45.

Kelley Heron won the 100-yard individual medley in 1:02.18.

Ervin Marin won the 100-yard individual medley in 55.81.

Full results and live results can be found at http://www.swimpst.com or Florida Swim Network which is also live streaming the meet which ends on Sunday.

IF YOU GO

What: 23rd annual Florida Gold Coast Speedo Winter Swimming Championships

When: Thursday-Sunday

Where: Plantation Central Park Aquatic Complex, 9151 NW Second St.

Schedule: SUNDAY— Session 10, 8:30 a.m.-12:46 p.m.; 1650s, girls 1:10-2:52 p.m., boys 1:10-3:07 p.m.; Session 14, 8:30 a.m.-12:57 p.m.; 1650s, girls 1:10-2:52 p.m., boys 1:10-3:07 p.m.; Finals, 5-7:09 p.m.

Live Streaming: Florida Swim Network is broadcasting the finals live. It is the second consecutive Florida Gold Coast Winter Championships that FSN is broadcasting.

Admission: $3 per session, $3 heat sheets per session. For more information go to http://www.swimpst.com.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com
http://www.swim4soflo.com

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