SOFLO Swimmers Continue Championship Season At FGC Senior Championships This Weekend

By Sharon Robb

CORAL SPRINGS, July 26, 2018—South Florida Aquatic Club swimmers will compete this weekend at the Florida Gold Coast Senior Long Course Championships.

The three-day meet will be hosted by Coral Springs Swim Club at the Michael Lohberg Pool of Champions at Coral Springs Aquatic Complex.

A week after winning the FGC Junior Olympics, SOFLO will compete along with several top teams including defending champion Azura Florida Aquatics.

SOFLO hopes to improve on last year’s seventh-place finish in the combined team totals with 540 points. A few SOFLO swimmers are also hoping to make their cuts for the USA Swimming Futures Championships.

SOFLO qualified 30 swimmers (12 women and 18 men) in 151 individual events. SOFLO also has 18 relay teams entered in 10 relays.

SOFLO swimmers are: Alana Acevedo, 17; Monica Alvarez, 30; Michael Arias, 15; Sophia Bedoya, 16; Heath Brames, 18; Kyana Castro, 15; Maya Coffey, 17; Juan Colmenares, 14; Daniela Curbelo, 15; Naomi Eaton, 16; Jonathan Farah, 20; Logan Gonzalez, 13; John Paul Handal, 15; Kylie Herman, 21; Kerollos Ibrahim, 18; Philopatier Ibrahim, 15; CJ Kopecki, 19; Jena Legaspi, 14; Rebekah Ling, 16; Melissa Marinheiro, 21; Michelle Marinheiro, 15; Alejandro Mateus, 13; Leonardo Mateus, 16; Abby Oyetunji, 18; Juancamilo Rivero, 15; Moises Rodriguez, 14; Nicolas Rossi, 15; Andrea Toledano, 17; Amy-Nicole Toro, 16; Michael Toro, 16; Christian Vasquez, 15; Marcos Vazquez, 15; and Robert Wilson, 15.

SOFLO’s CJ Kopecki, 19, is seeded second in the 200-meter butterfly in 2:08.83.

Melissa Marinheiro, 21, is seeded second in the 400-meter freestyle in 4:26.89 and second in the 200-meter freestyle in 2:07.55.

Leonardo Mateus, 16, is seeded first among 15-16s in the 1500-meter freestyle in 16:54.58.

The field features 42 Florida Gold Coast teams including Azura, Swim Fort Lauderdale, Hialeah, Gulliver Swim Club, Jupiter Dragons, Pine Crest Swimming, Westminster Academy and East Coast Aquatic Club.

The 50s will start from the dive well end of the pool for the entire meet according to meet organizers.


What: Florida Gold Coast Senior Long Course Championships

When: Friday-Sunday, prelims 8:30 a.m., finals 5 p.m., warm-ups 7 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. each day.

Timelines: Friday, prelims, 8:30 a.m.-12:28 p.m., finals 5-7:42 p.m.; Saturday, 8:30 a.m.-12:19 p.m., 5-7:37 p.m.; Sunday, 8:30 a.m.-1:16 p.m., 5-8:03 p.m.

Where: Coral Springs Aquatic Complex, Michael Lohberg School of Champions, 12441 Royal Palm Blvd., Coral Springs.

Of note: In last year’s meet, Azura won the combined team title with 1,295.50 followed by Gulliver with 1,245 and Metro Aquatics with 930…Admission $5 per session for prelims and $3 per session for finals…Concession stand will be available…For information call 954-345-2121 or 954-340-5032.

Sharon Robb can be reached at

Ledecky Opens USA Swimming Phillips 66 Nationals With A Win; SOFLO’s Golding Swims First Event

By Sharon Robb

IRVINE, Calif., July 25, 2018–Stanford’s Katie Ledecky won her opening event Wednesday at the Phillips 66 U.S. National Championships.

Ledecky, 21, under world record pace early in the race, won the 800-meter freestyle in 8:11.98. Leah Smith of Tuscon Ford Aquatics was second in 8:22.79.

The five-time Olympic gold medalist is looking for her 15th career world record. She is also entered in the 200, 400 and 1500-meter freestyles. She scratched from the 100 freestyle to focus on the 800.

In other races:

Simone Manuel swam the fastest 100-meter freestyle on American soil to win in a U.S. Open record 52.54. Her opening split was 25.62 and back end was 26.92.

Cal’s Nathan Adrian had his eight-year national title streak broken by Mission Viejo’s Blake Pieroni, 22, in a lifetime-best 48.08. Adrian, 29, was second in 48.25. It was the first time he lost the race in 2009.

Jordan Willimovsky, 24, won the 1500-meter freestyle in a life-time best 14:48.89, shaving 20.09 seconds off his previous best. St. Petersburg’s Robert Finke was second in 14:55.34.

In the 200-meter butterfly, Hali Flickinger, 24, of Athens Bulldogs won in 2:06.14 and Justin Wright, 22, of Tucson Ford won in 1:54.63.

South Florida Aquatic Club’s Kathleen Golding, 17, finished 62nd in the 100-meter freestyle in 56.57, 0.37 off her best time. It was the first of five events she entered.

Golding swims the 200-meter freestyle (2:02.28) on Thursday, 400-meter individual (4:50.65) on Friday and 200-meter individual medley (2:17.19) and 50-meter freestyle (26.35) on Sunday.

The senior championship meet is one of the biggest meets of the summer. The meet is the selection trials for the Aug. 9-12 Pan Pacific Championships in Tokyo. The U.S. 2019 FINA World Championship team will be chosen based on combined results from nationals and Pan Pacs.

It’s also a selection meet for Junior Pan Pacs, Pan American Games and World University Games.

Prelims are 9 a.m. and finals 6 p.m. Pacific Time, three hours behind South Florida.

The meet will be shown on the webcast of, the Olympic Channel at, NBC and NBC Sports Network.

Thursday — Day 2, Olympic Channel (9 p.m), NBCSN (11 p.m.)

Friday — Day 3, Olympic Channel (9 p.m.), NBCSN (11 p.m.)

Saturday — Taped footage, NBC (3 p.m.); Day 4, Olympic Channel (10 p.m.)

Sunday — Day 4, NCBCSN (1 a.m.); Taped footage, NBC (3 p.m.); Day 5, Olympic Channel (9 p.m.)

Monday — Day 5, NBCSN (6 p.m.)

Stream: or NBC Sports app


200-meter butterfly: 1. Hali Flickinger, ABSC 2:06.14, 2. Katie Drabot, STAN 2:07.18, 3 Regan Smith, RIP 2:07.42; FGC: 44. Mary Smutny, AquaKids Sharks 2:14.97.

100-meter freestyle: 1. Simone Manuel, STAN 52.54, 2. Mallory Comerford, LOUIS 53.09, 3. Margo Geer, MVN 53.44; FGC: 43. Megan Moroney, CAV 55.98, 62. Kathleen Golding 56.57, 87. Kyla Valls, CAV 57.35, 93. Mary Smutny, AquaKids Sharks.

800-meter freestyle:
1. Katie Ledecky, STAN 8:11.98, 2. Leah Smith, FORD 8:22.79, 3. Haley Anderson, TRO 8:24.13.


200-meter butterfly: 1. Justin Wright, FORD 1:54.63, 2.Zach Harting, LOUIS 1:55.11, 3. Jack Conger, NCAP 1:55.21; FGC: 33. Luke Smutny, PITT 2:00.24, time drop 0.15.

100-meter freestyle: 1. Blake Pieroni, MVN 48.08, 2. Nathan Adrian, CAL 48.25, 3. Townley Hess, NOVA 48.30; FGC: None.

1500-meter freestyle:
1. Jordan Willimovsky, TSM 14:48.89, 2. Robert Finke, SPA 14:55.34, 3. Zane Grothe MVN 15:00.85.

Sharon Robb can be reached at