By Sharon Robb
November 18, 2015— South Florida Aquatic Club swimmers will be among 1,100 swimmers and 51 teams at the 25th annual Florida Gold Coast Speedo Winter Swimming Championships that begin Thursday at Plantation Aquatic Complex.
Hosted by Plantation Swim Team and City if Plantation, it is the state’s largest age group meet and one of the nation’s largest LSC meets.
The meet will feature mystery heats at finals with Speedo products for awards. The awards for Top 3 finishers are custom-made seahorse medals.
SOFLO will be well-represented in one of its last major age group meets of the year with 30 swimmers.
SOFLO boys are led by Logan Gonzalez, 10, seeded second in the 500-yard freestyle and 100-yard backstroke and Valerie Vank, 10, seeded fourth in the 200-yard freestyle.
SOFLO’s contingent includes: Alana Acevedo, 14; Andres Arias, 15; Max Asnis, 16; Sam Asnis, 17; Fernando Barreto, 9; Kaitlyn Barrios, 9; Brennan Thomas Binder, 11; Ian Chalmers, 12; Mark Andre De Gracia, 11; Juan Diaz, 15; Odin Farkas, 12; Nathaniel Garrick, 10; Logan Gonzalez, 10; Madison Johnson, 14; Matthew Kim, 10; CJ Kopecki, 16; Ervin Marin, 16; Jacob Navarro, 9; Sebastian Navarro, 11; Sabrina Osorio, 10; Sofia Osorio, 10; Alessandro Pereira, 9; Kevin Porto, 15; Lucas Porven, 10; Ricardo Roche, 16; Enrique Rodriguez, 10; Jessica Rodriguez, 16; Natasha Testa, 17; Valerie Vank, 10; Alejandro Zambrano, 21 and Aldo Zepeda, 10.
Several swimmers in the field are coming off the high school season that ended last week with the state championships including Kopecki, who played a key role in American Heritage winning its third consecutive boys state 2A title.
The field features most of the Florida Gold Coast teams including Pine Crest, Heritage Aquatics, Azura Florida Aquatics, Wellington, Boca Raton Swim Team, Miami-Dade, Miami Swimming, Hialeah, Jupiter and Plantation Swim Team.
SOFLO will also compete at the Dec. 4-6 Gator Swim Club Holiday Classic, one of the top age group and senior invitationals in the state and held indoors in the Stephen O’Connell Center.
IF YOU GO
What: 25th annual Florida Gold Coast Speedo Winter Swimming Championships
Where: Plantation Aquatic Complex, 9151 NW Second St.
Schedule: THURSDAY, 5 p.m.; FRIDAY, Session 3, 8:30 a.m., noon and 5 p.m.; SATURDAY, 8:30 a.m., noon and 5 p.m.; SUNDAY—8:30 a.m., 11:45 a.m. and 5 p.m.
Admission: $5 per session, $3 heat sheets per session. For more information go to http://www.swimpst.com.
Sharon Robb can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org