By Sharon Robb

July 18—Defending champion South Florida Aquatic Club opened the Florida Gold Coast 14-and-Under Long Course Junior Olympics Friday with some impressive swimming at Plantation Aquatic Complex.

SOFLO, seeking its fifth JO long course title and 11th JO title overall, leads the combined team (272 points), boys team (122) and girls team (150) totals after the first day of competition.

Rafael Rodriguez, 12, broke his first Florida Gold Coast record of the meet in the 100-meter butterfly. He won the event in a lifetime best 1:03.35, breaking SOFLO teammate’s Julien Pinon FGC record.

It was a huge time drop for Rodriguez who entered the meet as the second seed in 1:07.26. He first bettered his time in 1:04.41 in prelims and dropped even more time in the final.

“I felt really good going into the race,” Rodriguez said. “I had a lot of energy. The fly is one of my better strokes. I have been working really hard in practice and it paid off tonight.

“I saw Bryan Rivero (Hialeah) in the first 50 and then I didn’t after that and I knew I had it,” Rodriguez said.

Rodriguez also anchored the winning 400-meter freestyle relay that won in 4:11.92 with teammates Leonardo Mateus, Eiza Gantus and Michael Arias and won the 400-meter freestyle in 4:26.84.

“I was really happy with the relay, I like swimming relays because it’s really fun,” Rodriguez said. “We are motivated because we are defending champions. We know it’s important to score a lot of points.”

Sara Quintero, 10, led the SOFLO girls team with an impressive win in the 400-meter freestyle in a best time 5:08.94, a big time drop of 8.18 seconds. She was also fourth in the 100-meter butterfly in 1:18.51 with another impressive time drop of 5.38 seconds.

“I am happy,” Quintero said. “I was nervous because the girl next to me was really fast. I wasn’t sure I got first and got the gold medal. I was scared the other girls beat me since I was in the first heat. I really wanted to get that gold medal.

“I am really looking forward to getting a spot in high points, this is a good start,” Quintero said. “I think why I dropped all this time is because I have been working hard in practice and my friends are pushing me in practice and that helps me train harder.”

Quintero said her teammates cheering her on was motivating. It was her first 400 victory at JOs. “I did my first JOs when I was 8, the 400 has always been a good event for me,” Quintero said.

“I wanted to go under 5:10 and I told my friend and she told her friend and they were all cheering for me,” Quintero said. “I got out of the pool my teammates were happy for me. I am tired but I am ready to race tomorrow and the day after.”

Other individual champions for SOFLO were:

Isabella Di Salvo, 12, 200-meter backstroke 2:35.00, best time.

Kathleen Golding, 13, 50-meter freestyle, 27.30, best time, knocking off top-seeded Catharine Cooper, 14, of Coral Springs Swim Club.

SOFLO also picked up big points in the relays.

SOFLO girls swept the 400- and 800-meter freestyle relays and finished second in the 200-meter freestyle relay.

SOFLO boys won the 400-meter freestyle relay and was second in both the 200- and 800-meter freestyle relays.

FRIDAY RESULTS

COMBINED TEAM TOTALS: 1. South Florida Aquatic Club 272, 2. North Palm Beach 114, 3. Gulliver Swim Club 104, 4. tie, Metro Aquatics, Azura Florida Aquatics 102, 6. Hialeah 99, 7. Pine Crest Swimming 76, 8. Jupiter 71, 9. Lake Lytal Lightning 56, 10. Miami Swimming 50.

BOYS TEAM TOTALS: 1. South Florida Aquatic Club 122, 2. Metro Aquatics 96, 3. Hialeah 92, 4. Azura Florida Aquatics 57, 5. Miami Swimming 50.

GIRLS TEAM TOTALS: 1. South Florida Aquatic Club 150, 2. North Palm Beach 98, 3. Pine Crest 69, 4. Gulliver 65, 5. Azura Florida Aquatics 45.

GIRLS INDIVIDUAL RESULTS

200-meter backstroke:

11-12, 1. Isabella DiSalvo, SOFLO 2:35.00, best time: SOFLO: 6. Anabel Vazquez 2:41.97, 11. Michelle Marinheiro 2:49.19, best time, 21. Rebekah Ling 3:00.65; 13-14, 1. Melannie Vargas, Miami-Dade 2:25.83; SOFLO: 2. Kelley Heron 2:27.76, best time; SOFLO: 17. Katherine DeBarros 2:47.07.

50-meter freestyle:

10-and-under, 1. Madelyn Hebert, East Coast Aquatics 30.67; SOFLO: 36. Jasmine Ahmet 35.74, best time, 52. Sarah Acevedo 37.05, best time; 11-12, 1. Andrea Santander, Gulliver 27.31; SOFLO: 3. Vanessa Mesa 29.25, 7. Marianna Serrao 29.86, 16. Isabella DiSalvo 30.73, best time, 20. Jacqueline Lugo 31.18, best time, 35. Valentina Carrion 32.08, best time, 60. Michelle Marinheiro 33.12, best time, 74. Sophia Bedoya 33.64, 77. Alana Acevedo 33.81, best time, 85. Rebekah Ling 33.97, best time, 88. Katrina Del Vecchio 34.00, 90. Lauren Siegman 34.24; 13-14: 1. Kathleen Golding, SOFLO 27.30, best time; SOFLO: 21. Abolade Oyetunji 29.90.

100-meter breaststroke:

10-and-under, 1. Margaret Miao, AquaKids Sharks 1:27.44; SOFLO: 11. Sally Golding 1:35.15, best time, 18. Bella Leggett 1:40.22, 23. Daniela Barreto 1:43.77, best time, 28. Sabrina Osorio 1:44.80, best time; 11-12: 1. Chelai Van Der Westhuizen, Pine Crest Swimming 1:19.57; SOFLO: 4. Marianna Serrao 1:21.38, best time, 10. Molly Golding 1:26.59, best time, 17. Valentina Carrion 1:30.55, best time, 29. Katrina Del Vecchio 1:34.07, best time, 31. Anabel Vazquez 1:34.59; 13-14: 1. Victoria Miyamoto, Pompano 1:16.45; SOFLO: 5. Kelley Heron 1:19.18, best time, 13. Jennifer Rodriguez 1:22.78, best time, 14. Elise Larin 1:23.47, best time.

100-meter butterfly:

10-and-under, 1. Heidi Smithwick, Jupiter 1:16.18; SOFLO: 4. Sara Quintero 1:18.51, best time, 5. Erika Pelaez 1:21.03, best time, 12. Bella Leggett 1:30.29, best time, 17. Jasmine Ashmet 1:33.31, best time, 20. Sally Golding 1:35.32; 11-12: 1. Andrea Santander, Gulliver 1:05.26; SOFLO: 3. Isabella Di Salvo 1:10.34, 4. Vanessa Mesa 1:12.02, 8. Kyana Castro 1:14.16, 30. Alana Acevedo 1:21.80, 35. Celenia Lumelski 1:27.31; 13-14: 1. Jessica Nava, Pine Crest 1:03.13; SOFLO: 2. Kathleen Golding 1:04.92, best time, 22. Delanie Perez 1:12.47, best time.

400-meter freestyle:

10-and-under, 1. Sara Quintero, SOFLO 5:08.94, best time; SOFLO: 6. Erika Pelaez 5:26.36, best time, 11. Sally Golding 5:40.38, best time, 16. Sarah Acevedo 5:49.75, best time; 11-12, 1. Andrea Santander, Gulliver 4:34.49; SOFLO: 3. Marianna Serrao 4:47.96, best time, 8. Vanessa Mesa 4:53.93, 9. Kyana Castro 4:59.71, best time, 11. Molly Golding 5:00.55, best time, 17. Michelle Marinheiro 5:06.32, best time, 19. Valentina Carrion 5:08.51, best time, 28. Jacqueline Lugo 5:17.26, best time, 31. Alana Acevedo 5:18.84, best time, 42. Kayla Cunningham 5:29.79, best time; 13-14, 1. Alicia Mancilla, Gulliver 4:28.79; SOFLO: 6. Kelley Heron 4:43.55, 17. Abolade Oyetunji 4:56.21, best time.

200-meter freestyle relay:

13-14, 1. Pine Crest “A” 1:54.44 (Alexandra Meszaros, Jessica Nava, Annabella Lyn, Marissa Brannan), 2. SOFLO “A” 1:56.88 (Kelley Heron, Abolade Oyetunji, Delanie Perez, Kathleen Golding), 3. Azura Florida Aquatics 1:57.67, 15. SOFLO “B” 2:05.30 (Katherine DeBarros, Elise Larin, Jennifer Rodriguez, Zariya Harris).

400-meter freestyle relay:

11-12, 1. SOFLO “A” 4:18.24 (Marianna Serrao, Kyana Castro, Isabella DiSalvo, Vanessa Mesa), 2. North Palm Beach 4:21.27, 3. Gulliver 4:29.57, 6. SOFLO “B” 4:35.09 (Molly Golding, Anabel Vazquez, Michelle Marinheiro, Valentina Carrion).

800-meter freestyle relay:

13-14, 1. SOFLO “A” 8:57.12 (Kelley Heron, Abolade Oyetunji, Delanie Perez, Kathleen Golding), 2. Pine Crest “A” 8:58.07, 3. North Palm Beach 9:27.19.

BOYS INDIVIDUAL RESULTS

200-meter backstroke:

11-12, 1. Elvis Kotikovski, Azura Florida Aquatics 2:22.28; SOFLO: 3. Leonardo Mateus 2:27.89, best time, 18. Roberto Garrido 3:04.48; 13-14, 1. Alberto Gomez, Miami-Dade 2:11.45; SOFLO: 4. Kevin Porto 2:19.16, best time, 12. Samuel Quintero 2:30.71, best time, 16. Juan Osorio 2:33.79.

50-meter freestyle:

10-and-under, 1. Joshua Zuchowski, Jupiter 30.48; SOFLO: 10. Alex Torres 32.89, best time, 24. Alex Golding 34.23, best time, 41. Alejandro Mateus 36.73; 11-12, 1. Aaron Rodriguez, Hialeah 27.54, 2. Elvis Kotikovski, Azura 28.13, 3. Bryan Rivero, Hialeah 28.18; SOFLO: 10. Eiza Gantus 29.69, best time, 36. Nicolas Rossi 32.27, best time; 13-14, 1. Noah Zhang, OAC 25.88; SOFLO: 22. Juan Osorio 28.00, best time, 36. Andres Arias 28.96, 49. Gabriel Segui 29.90.

100-meter breaststroke:

10-and-under, 1. Victor Valdes, Hialeah 1:23.89; SOFLO: 10. Alex Torres 1:38.37, 11. Zackary Harris 1:38.67, best time, 13. Alex Golding 1:39.19, best time, 23. Mark Andre De Gracia 1:48.20, best time; 11-12, 1. Aaron Rodriguez, Hialeah 1:20.16; SOFLO: 8. Michael Arias 1:26.67, best time, 13. John Paul Handal 1:31.46, best time; 13-14, 1. Felipe Urrutia, Miami Swimming 1:10.03; SOFLO: 2. Ervin Marin 1:12.29, 11. Samuel Quintero 1:19.82, best time, 13. Brandon Moran 1:21.35.

100-meter butterfly:

10-and-under, 1. Nicolas Gallego, Wahoos 1:13.87; SOFLO: 4. Zackary Harris 1:20.00, best time, 16. Alejandro Mateus 1:32.45, best time; 11-12, 1. Rafael Rodriguez, SOFLO 1:03.35, FGC record, best time; SOFLO: 6. Jie Hoon Lee 1:12.73, 14. Michael Arias 1:17.33, 22. John Paul Handal 1:19.68; 13-14, 1. Miguel Cancel, Miami Swimming 58.62; SOFLO: 3. Ervin Marin 1:01.71, best time 26. Gabriel Segui 1:09.26.

400-meter freestyle:

10-and-under, 1. Kaii Winkler, FLA 5:11.98; SOFLO: 5. Alex Torres 5:25.03, best time, 9. Zackary Harris 5:36.21, best time; 11-12, 1. Rafael Rodriguez, SOFLO 4:26.84; SOFLO: 2. Leonardo Mateus 4:36.65, best time, 6. Michael Arias 4:56.18, best time, 7. Jie Hoon Lee 4:57.77, best time, 13. Nicolas Rossi 5:05.40, 14. John Paul Handal 5:05.44; 13-14, 1. Miguel Cancel, Miami Swimming 4:15.03; SOFLO: 2. Kevin Porto 4:20.45, best time, 17. Juan Osorio 4:39.55, best time, 24. Samuel Quintero 4:44.50, best time, 43. Gabriel Segui 4:56.66, best time, 49. Andres Arias 5:01.16, 51. Brandon Moran 5:06.50.

200-meter freestyle relay:

13-14, 1.Metro Aquatic Club of Miami 1:44.83 (Adrian Aguilar, Aitor Fungairino, Fernando Rodriguez, Andres Solares), 2. SOFLO “A” 1:47.82 (Kevin Porto, Andres Arias, Juan Osorio, Ervin Marin), 3. Azura Florida Aquatics 1:48.74.

400-meter freestyle relay:

11-12, 1. SOFLO “A” 4:11.92 (Leonardo Mateus, Eiza Gantus, Michael Arias, Rafael Rodriguez), 2. Metro Aquatics 4:13.93, 3. Hialeah 4:14.75, 7. SOFLO “B” 4:42.47 (Nicolas Rossi, Roberto Garrido, Jie Hoon Lee).

800-meter freestyle relay:

13-14, 1. Metro Aquatics 8:34.39 (Aitor Fungairino, Fernando Rodriguez, David Llanio), 2. SOFLO “A” 8:38.16 (Kevin Porto, Juan Osorio, Samuel Quintero, Ervin Marin).

IF YOU GO

What: 14 & Under Florida Gold Coast Junior Olympics

When: Saturday-Sunday

Where: Plantation Aquatic Complex, 9151 NW Second Street, Plantation

Schedule: Saturday, Session 4, 8:30 a.m.-12:13 p.m., Session 5, timed finals, 1:15-3:10 p.m., Session 6, 6-8:35 p.m.; Sunday, Session 7, 8:30-11:18 a.m., Session 8, 10-and-under timed finals, noon-1:27 p.m.; Session 9, 2:30-5:58 p.m.; Session 10, 6:30-7:48 p.m.

Admission: $3 per session, $3 heat sheets per session.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

http://www.swim4soflo.com

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