U.S., Brazil, Argentina Win Gold, Pine Crest’s Santander Swims First Relay On Day One Of XVIII Pan American Games

By Sharon Robb

LIMA, Peru, August 7, 2019—The U.S., Brazil and Argentina shared the gold medal podium on opening day of swimming Tuesday at the XVIII Pan American Games at Villa Deportiva Nacional.

Pine Crest’s Andrea Santander swam her first event for Venezuela. The relay of Jeserik Andrein Pinto Sequera, Carla Gonzalez, Santander and Fabiana Antonel Pesce Flores finished fourth in 3:53.89 behind the U.S., Brazil and Canada.

Argentina’s Delfina Pignatiello, with her fingernails painted with her country’s light blue and white nails, won the 400-meter freestyle in 4:10.86. She led for most of the race.

American Andrew Abruzzo won the men’s 400-meter freestyle in 3:48.41 after taking the lead at the 300-meter mark. Colombia’s Santiago Corredo was eighth in 3:56.00.

American Annie Lazor, swimming from Lane 7, won the 100-meter breaststroke in 1:06.94.

Brazil’s Joao Gomes knocked off American Cody Miller to out-touch him and win the 100-meter breaststroke 59.51-59.57. American Kevin Cordes was third in 1:00.27. Colombia’s Jorge Murillo, a former SOFLO swimmer, was fifth in 1:00.91.

Argentina’s Virginia Bardach Martin won the women’s 200-meter butterfly in 2:10.87. American Meghan Small was third in 2:12.51.

Brazil’s Leonardo de Deus won the men’s 200-meter butterfly in 1:55.85 to win his third consecutive gold medal in the event at Pan Ams. American Sam Pomajevich was second in 1:57.35. Early leader Tom Shields faded to eighth in 2:06.65.

The U.S. team overtook Brazil at the 200-meter mark to win the women’s 4×100-meter freestyle relay to take the gold in 3:39.59 with Margo Geer, Lia Neal, Claire Rasmus and Meaghan Raab. Brazil was second in 3:40.39.

Brazil came back and knocked off the U.S. to win the men’s 4×100-meter freestyle relay. Nathan Adrian anchored the relay with the second fastest split of 47.70.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

Claire Tuggle, Mason Laur Win Titles, SOFLO’s Rodriguez Swims First Race At USA Swimming Speedo Junior National Championships

By Sharon Robb

PALO ALTO, Calif., August 6, 2019—Claire Tuggle of Clovis Swim Club won the 800-meter freestyle to highlight action on opening day of the USA Swimming Speedo Junior National Championships Tuesday at Stanford’s Avery Aquatic Center.

Tuggle, 15, won in a lifetime-best 8:38.55 after turning at 4:15.97 at the halfway mark. Her previous best was 8:42.37 earlier this summer. Tuggle scratched the 200-meter butterfly final to focus on the 800. Jillian Cox of Austin Trinity Aquatic Club was a distant second in 8:44.99.

During morning prelims South Florida Aquatic Club’s Rafael Rodriguez, 17, was 57th in the 18-and-under 200-meter butterfly in 2:06.38.

Rodriguez has the 400-meter individual medley next on Wednesday. He swims the 100-meter butterfly, seeded in 57.31, on Friday.

Both Rodriguez and SOFLO teammate Lance Lesage are making their junior nationals debut.

On Wednesday, Lesage, 16, will swim his first event, the 200-meter backstroke, seeded 41st in 2:06.42. Lesage wraps up his meet on Friday with the 100-meter backstroke, seeded 62nd in 58.60.

Other Florida Gold Coast results:

Kevin Degrijze of East Coast Aquatics Club was 75th in the 200-meter butterfly in 2:07.81 with a time drop of 0.20.

Other individual winners in opening day action were:

Justina Kozan, 15, of Brea Aquatics won the women’s 200-meter butterfly in 2:09.68. It was her first sub-2:10 race.

Mason Laur of T2 Aquatics of Florida Swimming won the men’s 200-meter butterfly in 1:59.25.

Lydia Jacoby, 15, of Seward Tsunami of Alaska won the women’s 100-meter breaststroke in 1:08.12.

Liam Bell of US Aquatics Club won the men’s 100-meter breaststroke in a lifetime-best 1:01.19.

NC State-bound James Plage of Aquabears won the 1500-meter freestyle in 15:16.97. David Johnston of Rockwall Aquatic Club of Excellence was a distant second in 15:33.36.

USA Swimming is live streaming all sessions of junior nationals, unlike the senior national meet, which had sessions split between USA Swimming and NBC Sports. All 10 sessions of the meet will come through live on USASwimming.org. Prelims are 9 a.m. local time and finals at 5 PM. The meet continues through Saturday.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com