By Sharon Robb
June 22, 2014—-South Florida Aquatic Club’s Melissa Marinheiro and her teammates ended on a good note Sunday at the Arena Grand Prix at Santa Clara at George Haines International Aquatic Center.
The 17-year-old Brazilian finished 11th in her 800-meter freestyle race and 21st overall in 9:02.38.
SOFLO’s 400-meter medley relay team of Marcella Marinheiro, Jessica Rodriguez, Olivia Katcher and Melissa Marinheiro was 14th in 4:41.06.
Tasija Karosas, 18, of St. Andrew’s Swimming and University of Texas sophomore-to-be finished 15th in the 100-meter backstroke in 1:02.80, dropping 0.67 seconds from her prelim time. She qualified 18th in 1:03.47, 1.28 slower than her best time.
Megan Moroney, 17, also of St. Andrew’s Swimming, was second in the “C” final of the 200-meter butterfly in 2:19.02.
Marcelo Acosta, 17, of Azure Florida Aquatics was top Florida Gold Coast finisher, placing fourth in the 1500-meter freestyle in 15:42.55.
Marco Guarente, also of Azure, was seventh in the “D” final of the 100-meter breaststroke in 1:07.40.
OTHER FLORIDA GOLD COAST RESULTS:
200-meter butterfly: WOMEN: Olivia Katcher, SOFLO 2:34.30; MEN: Luiz Martinez, Azure 2:07.75.
100-meter breaststroke: WOMEN: Jessica Rodriguez, SOFLO 1:19.90; MEN: Marco Guarente, Azure 1:06.24, prelims, Daniel Pereira, Azure 1:09.46.
100-meter backstroke: WOMEN: Megan Moroney, St. Andrew’s Swimming 1:06.02; MEN: Quinn Cassidy, St. Andrew’s Swimming 1:00.74.
200-meter individual medley: WOMEN: Jessica Rodriguez, SOFLO 2:39.02; MEN: Marco Guarente, Azure 2:11.40, Daniel Pereira, Azure 2:13.43, Quinn Cassidy, St. Andrew’s Swimming 2:15.47.
IN THE CHAMPIONSHIP FINALS:
Women’s 200-meter butterfly: Top seed and Venezuelan Olympian Andreina Pinto, 22, of Gainesville Swim Club came on in the third 50 meters to win in 2:10.59, 5/10ths off her best time. Former Clearwater swimmer Becca Mann, 16, of North Baltimore was second in 2:12.24. Lauren Harrington, 21, of the Athens Bulldogs was third in 2:12.68.
Men’s 200-meter butterfly: Sebastien Rousseau, 23, of Gainesville Swim Club held off Bobby Bollier, 24, of Stanford in the final 15 meters to win in 1:58.50, winning by 15/100ths. Bollier’s time was 1:58.65. Chase Kalisz, 20, of North Baltimore was third in 1:59.76. Omar Pinzon of Bolles won the “C” final in 2:03.66.
“I have been working on those last couple strokes coming into the wall since I have been pretty weak in that,” Rousseau said. “It looks like it paid off in the last five meters. I saw Bobby so I am pretty happy with that finish.”
Women’s 100-meter breaststroke: Laura Sogar, 23, of Blue Fish broke open a close race to win in 1:09.15, her best time of the season. Canadian Olympian Tera Van Beilen, 21, was second in 1:09.59 and Irish national record holder Fiona Doyle, 22, was third in 1:09.61.
“I’m not surprised that went better than my 200, we have been pretty much getting killed in the water during altitude training in Colorado Springs,” Sogar said. “I’m glad it went well.”
Men’s 100-meter breaststroke: NCAA champion Kevin Cordes, 20, of Tucson Ford won in 1:00.91, his second win of the meet. Mike Alexandrov, 29, swimming unattached was second in 1:01.65. Brazilian Felipe Lima, 29, of Azure Florida Aquatics was third in 1:01.78. Cordes also won the 200 breaststroke.
“This gives me a lot of confidence going into the end of the summer and championship season,” Cordes said. “It’s a nice way to end this meet. Now it’s all about sharpening up and getting ready to race.”
Women’s 100-meter backstroke: Olympian Missy Franklin, 19, of Cal Aquatics who was close to the lane line because of the sun in her eyes, put in a late charge in the last 20 meters to win in 1:00.99. It was her second win of the meet. Amy Bilquist, 16, of Carmel was second in 1:01.44 and Elizabeth Pelton of Cal Aquatics was third in 1:01.48.
“The sun was pretty tough, I was just happy I didn’t slam into it,” Franklin said. “I feel pretty good about my backstroke. There is definitely a lot to improve. We just wanted to come into this meet, have fun and see where I am. Now I have a couple more weeks of hard training and then nationals.”
Men’s 100-meter backstroke: Olympic bronze medalist Arkady Vyatchanin, 30, of the New York Athletic Club edged Matt Grevers, 29, of Tucson Ford 54.34-54.95 and picked up five grand prix points. Vyatchanin is eight-for-eight in backstroke events in the last four Arena Grand Prix meets. Eugene Godsoe, 26, of Stanford Swimming was third in 55.41. Bolles’ Omar Pinzon was tenth in 56.32.
“That was close,” Vyatchanin said. “I am just trying to swim faster.”
Women’s 200-meter individual medley: Knowing she had to win for a new car, Caitlin Leverenz, 23, of Cal Aquatics won in 2:12.61 to clinch the series’ award of using a new BMW for a year. Erika Seltenreich-Hodgson, 19, was second in 2:13.79 and Theresa Michalak, 22, swimming unattached was third in 2:14.03. Becca Mann was eighth in 2:17.89.
“I was definitely racing and thinking I want that car,” Leverenz said with a smile. “Before the race my coaches were telling me I could do it.”
Men’s 200-meter individual medley: Conor Dwyer, 25, of North Baltimore Aquatic Club came from behind in the freestyle to win an exciting three-man race and clinch the $20,000 grand prix series prize money and use of a BMX for a year by just 4/100ths of a second. Dwyer won in 1:59.49 edging training mates Chase Kalisz, 20, in 1:59.53 and Michael Phelps, 28, in 1:59.76. Dwyer didn’t realize he was in contention for the series prize money and car until color commentator Rowdy Gaines told him before finals started. Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu, who did not compete at the meet, had already clinched the women’s grand prix series title.
“A big thanks to Rowdy for reminding me that I was in contention before the race,” Dwyer said. “I am never racing for money but it was a nice little extra incentive right there. I didn’t know where I was in the race. I know I wanted to go out with Michael and lay out four 50s as hard as I could.”
Women’s 800-meter freestyle: California-bound Cierra Runge, 18, of North Baltimore held off Denmark’s Lotte Friis for her first win on the grand prix series. She won in a best time 8:26.71, dropping nine seconds off her previous best. Friis, 25, was second in 8:27.26. Canadian Brittany MacLean, 20, was third in 8:29.51. Elizabeth Beisel, who swam in an earlier heat, finished fourth in 8:33.27. North Baltimore took three of the top five places. Andreina Pinto of Gainesville Swim Club was sixth in 8:38.65.
“It was really fun,” Runge said. “I enjoyed swimming with my teammates. All these girls did a fantastic job, it was a lot of fun racing them. We have so much fun together training at North Baltimore, we enjoy what we do. This race gives me a lot of confidence. I went into this seeing what I could do. It was fun getting to the wall, I wasn’t expecting a nine-second drop.”
Men 1500-meter freestyle: Connor Jaeger, 23, of Club Wolverine dominated the morning race to win in 15:00.97. Michael McBroom won the final heat and was second overall in 15:04.41 and Sean Ryan was third in 15:07.82.
Women’s 400-meter medley relay: Carmel Swim Club won in 4:16.27 with Claire Adams, Taite Kitchel, Veronica Burchill and Amy Bilquist. Wisconsin was second in 4:16.45 and Hong Kong was third in 4:18.76.
Men’s 400-meter medley relay: Mexico swept the relays with Ezequiel Trujillo Aviles, Miguel De Lara Ojeda, Long Gutierrez and Alejandro Escudero winning the final one in 3:49.09. Nitro Swimming was second in 3:51.44 and Wisconsin Aquatics third in 3:52.01.
The final stop on the Grand Prix six-meet circuit served as a final dress rehearsal for this summer’s National Championships and Selection Trials (Aug. 6-10 in Irvine, Calif.) for the Pan Pacific Championships in August and 2015 World Championships in Russia.
Teenager Katie Ledecky did it again. Ledecky broke her own 800-meter freestyle world record at the The Woodlands Swim Team Senior Invitational Sunday in Houston. She took nearly three seconds off her world record (8:13.86) swim of less than a year ago with a new record of 8:11, fastest time in the world by eight seconds. It was her second world record of the meet.
Sharon Robb can be reached at email@example.com