By Sharon Robb
STUART, July 13, 2022—South Florida Aquatic Club will be one of the favorites when the 14&Under Florida Gold Coast Junior Olympics get under way Thursday at Sailfish Splash Waterpark.
SOFLO is sending one of its largest contingents with 64 qualified swimmers (33 boys, 31 girls) in 274 individual events and relays.
At last summer’s JOs, SOFLO won the girls team title with 262 points ahead of Metro Aquatics with 234. The girls team led from start to finish.
SOFLO boys’ team finished second with 246.50 behind Metro Aquatics with 346 points.
Metro Aquatics won the combined team title with 610 points. Defending champion SOFLO was second with 546.50 and St. Andrew’s Aquatics third with 370.
The meet begins Thursday at 5:30 p.m. with 96 entries competing in 15 heats of timed finals in the 1500 freestyle, 400 freestyle and 400 IM.
SOFLO’s Christie Ann Lumsden, 10, is top seed in two events, the 100 breaststroke, 1:32.49 and 50 breaststrokem 41.36.
SOFLO, Metro Aquatics and St. Andrew’s lead the field of FGC teams. Among other teams entered are Wahoos of Wellington, Miami Swimming, Gulliver, Heritage Aquatics, Swim Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, Blue Marlins, Lake Lytal Lightning, Pompano Beach Piranhas, North Miami Swim Team, Jupiter Dragons, Midtown Weston, Ransom, Pine Crest Swimming and Plantation Swim Team.
SOFLO swimmers making their final JO summer meet appearance are 14-year-olds: Anjana Andapally, Sarah Bedoya, Amelie Bicerne, Elise Dinehart, Genesis Escobar, Katelyn Gembicki, Derek Hau, Mason Jimenez, Benjamin Kim, Tania Mantilla, Matt McVeigh, Isabella Montes, Abraham Penaloza, Marianna Pinto, Felipe Rodriguez, Nicolai Ross and Sarah Vasquez.
The venue is the site for the FHSAA high school state meets every year as well as several other meets.
The meet is being co-hosted by Martin County, Florida Gold Coast Swimming, Martin County Swimming and North Palm Beach Swim Club for the sixth time.
IF YOU GO
WHAT: 14&Under Florida Gold Coast Junior Olympics
WHERE: Sailfish Splash Park, 931 SE Ruhnke, Stuart.
TIMELINE: Thursday, 5:30-9:03 p.m.; Friday, 8:30 a.m.-12:40 p.m., 5:30-6:49 p.m.; Saturday, 8:30 a.m.-1:23 p.m., 5:30-6:46 p.m.; Sunday, 8:30 a.m.-12:24 p.m., 5:30-7:13 p.m.
ADMISSION: $5 per session. Heat sheets will not be sold but will be available at http://www.martincountyswimming.org or http://www.npbswimming.com. A concession stand will be available. The venue will open to spectators, athletes and coaches at 7 a.m. each morning and 4 p.m. each afternoon.
Sharon Robb can be reached at email@example.com