SOFLO’s Alia Atkinson Takes Third On Final Day Of Arena Pro Swim Series


By Sharon Robb

May 15, 2016—Alia Atkinson of South Florida Aquatic Club placed third in the 50-meter breaststroke Sunday on the fourth and final day of the Arena Pro Swim Series at the newly-renovated Mecklenburg County Aquatic Center in Charlotte, N.C.

The 27-year-old three-time Jamaican Olympian was the third fastest qualifier in 31.33 and lowered that time to 30.77 in the final.

Lilly King set a meet and pool record winning the 50-meter breaststroke in 30.34, lowering Atkinson’s previous record of 30.54.

Atkinson was also 47th in 100-meter freestyle in 59.33.

SOFLO teammate Jorge Murillo Valdes of Colombia, eighth in prelims in the 50-meter breaststroke in 28.38, finished eighth again in finals in 28.75.

In Sunday’s other action:

World record holder Ryan Lochte, 31, won the 200-meter individual medley in 1:58.97, just shy of his 2016 world best of 1:58.43.

Cody Miller, 24, of Badger completed a breaststroke sweep winning the 50-meter breaststroke in a pool record 27.39 to lower the existing record of 27.71 set by Mike Alexandrov in 2013.

Leah Smith, 21, swimming unattached won the 800-meter freestyle in 8:27.79, her fastest time of the year.

Caitlin Leverenz, 25, of Cal Aquatics won the 200-meter individual medley in 2:14.44. She led from wire-to-wire.

Canadian Dominique Bouchard won the 200-meter backstroke in 2:09.14.

Arkady Vyatchanin beat Tyler Clary in the 200-meter backstroke in 1:59.09. Clary finished in 1:59.25. The two swam stroke-for-stroke for most of the race.

Canadian Penny Oleksiak won the 100-meter freestyle in 53.41.

Canadian Santo Condorelli won the 100-meter freestyle in 48.41.

Connor Jaeger won the 1500-meter freestyle with a 13-second cushion in 14:59.13.

The top three finishers win $1,000, $600 and $200. The meet was also a FINA-approved competition where swimmers can achieve qualifying times for the Olympics.

Only two Arena Pro Swim Series meets remain including Santa Clara and Indianapolis.

SUNDAY’S EVENTS

WOMEN

800-meter freestyle: 1. Leah Smith, Unattached 8:27.79, 2. Ashley Twichell, Unattached 8:30.45, 3. Lindsay Vrooman, Badger 8:32.94.

200-meter individual medley: 1. Caitlin Leverenz, Cal Aquatics 2:12.72, 2. Karlee Bispo, Unattached 2:13.96, 3. Siobhan Haughey, Michigan 2:14.60.

200-meter backstroke: 1. Dominique Bouchard, Swimming Canada 2:09.14, 2. Erin Voss, Unattached 2:10.37, 3. Clara Smiddy, Michigan 2:11.22.

50-meter breaststroke: 1. Lilly King, Indiana 30.35, 2. Katie Meilli, SwimMAC 30.42, 3. Alia Atkinson, SOFLO 30.77.

100-meter freestyle: 1. Penny Oleksiask, Swimming Canada 53.41, 2. Chantal Van Landeghem, Swimming Canada 54.13, 3. Dana Vollmer, Cal Aquatics 54.19; SOFLO: 47. Alia Atkinson 59.33.

MEN

1500-meter freestyle: 1. Connor Jaeger, Club Wolverine 14:59.13, 2. Zane Grothe, Badger 15:13.29, 3. Ricardo Vargas, Mexico 15:14.18.

200-meter individual medley: 1. Ryan Lochte, SwimMAC 1:58.97, 2. Connor Dwyer, Trojan SC 2:00.90, 3. Norbert Szabo, Unattached 2:01.56.

200-meter backstroke: 1. Arkady Vyatchanin, New York Athletic Club 1:59.09, 2. Tyler Clary, SwimMAC 1:59.25, 3. Carter Griffin, UMIZ 1:59.86.

50-meter breaststroke: 1. Cody Miller, Badger 27.53, 2. Jason Block, Swimming Canada 27.64, 3. Nic Eriksson, QU 27.96; SOFLO: 8. Jorge Murillo Valdes 28.75, 32. Marc Rojas 31.00.

100-meter freestyle: 1. Santo Condorelli, Swimming Canada 48.41, 2. Jimmy Feigen, NYAC 49.56, 3. Yuri Kisil, Swimming Canada 49.60.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

Bolles Alum Condorelli Wins Again At Arena Pro Swim Series; Murillo, Atkinson Among Top 10


By Sharon Robb

May 14, 2016—Jacksonville Bolles alum Santo Condorelli won his second event Saturday night in the Arena Pro Swim Series at the newly-renovated Mecklenburg County Aquatic Center in Charlotte, N.C.

Condorelli, competing for Canada, won the 50-meter butterfly in 23.82, the only swimmer to crack 24 seconds. In morning prelims, he went 23.77 to earn the top seed.

On Friday, Condorelli, 21, posted the lone sub-53 second time to win the 100-meter butterfly in 52.53.

“I’m working on specific things at this event and trying to fine-tune my performance in preparing for the Olympics,” Condorelli said.

South Florida Aquatic Club three-time Jamaican Olympian Alia Atkinson scratched from the C final of the 200-meter breaststroke to focus on the B final of the 50 butterfly.

Atkinson finished 10th in the 50-meter butterfly final in 27.17. In morning prelims, Atkinson finished 22nd in the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:36.26. In morning prelims, she was 16th in the 50-meter butterfly in 27.92.

SOFLO teammate Jorge Murillo, 24, of Colombia was eighth in the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:20.68.

In Saturday’s other action:

Cammile Adams won the 200-meter butterfly in 2:08.14, her best time of the year.

Mexico’s Jonathan Gomez won the 200-meter butterfly in 1:57.36.

Canadian Chantal Van Landeghem won the 50-meter freestyle in 24.43.

Kylie Masse of Canada turned in the only sub-minute 100-meter backstroke to win in 59.98.

Arkady Vyatchanin won the 100-meter backstroke in 54.80 ahead of Ryan Lochte, second in 55.22.

Anne Lazor won the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:24.96.

Cody Miller won the men’s 200-meter breaststroke in 2:12.22.

Dana Vollmer, looking stronger than ever, won the 50-meter butterfly in 25.87 just ahead of Penny Oleksiak in 25.97.

Leah Smith won the 400-meter freestyle in a pool record in 4:05.21. The four-year record was held by Allison Schmidt in 4:05.40.

Conor Dwyer, training in altitude the last two months, led from wire to wire to win the 400-meter freestyle in 3:47.37.

Anthony Ervin, who recently relocated to SwimMAC, won the 50-meter freestyle in the only sub-22 in 21.98. Condorelli was second in 22.15.

The field features 30 national team members and more than 500 swimmers. The top three finishers win $1,000, $600 and $200. The meet is also a FINA-approved competition where swimmers can achieve qualifying times for the Olympics.

A full schedule of long course events are scheduled for Sunday, the meet’s final day, with prelims at 9 a.m. and finals at 6 p.m.

Only three Arena Pro Swim Series meets remain including this weekend’s event in Charlotte, Santa Clara and Indianapolis.

NBC Sports Live Extra will stream Sunday’s final sessions live. NBC Sports Network will air tape-delayed television coverage of the meet from noon to 3 p.m. The entire meet will also be live streamed at usaswimming.org.

SATURDAY’S EVENTS

WOMEN

200-meter butterfly: 1. Cammile Adams, SwimMAC 2:08.14, 2. Jen Marrkand, Unattached 2:09.89, 3. Hannah Saiz, SSTY 2:10.75.

50-meter freestyle: 1. Chantal Van Landeghem, Swimming Canada 24.43, 2. Madison Kennedy, SwimMAC 24.53, 3. Farida Osman, Unattached 25.00

100-meter backstroke: 1. Kylie Masse, Swimming Canada 59.98, 2. Kirsty Coventry, SwimMAC 1:00.12, 3. Ali Deloof, Michigan 1:00.41.

200-meter breaststroke: 1. Anne Lazor, AU 2:24.95, 2. Kierra Smith, Swimming Canada 2:25.06, 3. Lilly King, Indiana 2:25.13; SOFLO: 22. Alia Atkinson 2:36.26.

50-meter butterfly: 1. Dana Vollmer, Cal Aquatics 25.87, 2. Penny Oleksiak, Swimming Canada 25.97, 3. Farida Osman, Unattached 26.11; SOFLO: 10. Alia Atkinson 27.17.

400-meter freestyle: 1. Leah Smith, Unattached 4:05.21, 2. Lindsay Vrooman, Badger 4:07.71, 3. Gillian Ryan, Michigan 4:10.33.

MEN

200-meter butterfly: 1. Jonathan Gomez, SCAR 1:57.36, 2. Tyler Clary, SwimMAC 1:58.68, 3. Zach Harting, Louisville 1:59.68.

50-meter freestyle: 1. Anthony Ervin, Unattached 21.98, 2. Santo Condorelli, Swimming Canada 22.15, 3. Josh Schneider, NYAC 22.16.

100-meter backstroke: 1. Javier Acevedo, Swimming Canada 56.38, 2. Markus Thormeyer, Swimming Canada 56.41, 3. Carter Griffin, UMIZ 56.45.

200-meter breaststroke: 1. Cody Miller, Badger 2:12.22, 2. Mauro Castillo Luna, TAMU 2:15.28, 3. Luis Jasso, Mexico 2:15.48; SOFLO: 8. Jorge Murillo 2:20.68, 37. Marc Rojas 2:34.68.

50-meter butterfly: 1. Santo Condorelli, Swimming Canada 23.82, 2. Matthew Josa, SwimMAC 24.10, 3. Tim Phillips, SwimMAC 24.12.

400-meter freestyle: 1. Connor Dwyer, Trojan SC 3:47.37, 2. Zane Grothe, Badger 3:48.40, 3. Connor Jaeger, Club Wolverine 3:48.62.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

Atkinson, Murillo, Rojas Compete Friday At Arena Pro Series


By Sharon Robb

May 12, 2016—South Florida Aquatic Club swimmers will begin competing Friday in the Arena Pro Swim Series at the newly-renovated Mecklenburg County Aquatic Center.

Three-time Jamaican Olympian Atkinson opens with the 100-meter breaststroke and 100-meter butterfly.

Atkinson has the world’s 13th best time in the 100-meter breaststroke this year. Katie Meili is the top seed in the event. At last summer’s Pan American Games, Meili took gold while Atkinson settled for the silver.

Atkinson has an ambitious schedule with six events over three days. She will also compete in the 50- and 200-meter breaststroke, 50-meter butterfly and 100-meter freestyle.

Colombian Jorge Murillo and Marc Rojas swim the 100-meter breaststroke. Both are also entered in the 50- and 200-meter breaststroke events.

Atkinson and Murillo are already qualified for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janiero. Rojas is trying to make his U.S. Olympic trials cut.

In Thursday opening day distance action:

Marcelo Acosta, 19, of Azura Florida Aquatics was top Florida Gold Coast finisher, placing third in the 800-meter freestyle in 8:05.79.

Connor Jaeger, 25, of Club Wolverine won the 800-meter freestyle in 7:54.49.

Ashley Twichell, 26, ofCal Aquatics won the 1500-meter freestyle in 16:11.19.

Cammile Adams, 24, of SwimMAC won the 800-meter freestyle in 8:33.79. She was also sixth in the 1500 in 16:44.84.

The field features 30 national team members and more than 500 swimmers.

A full schedule of long course events begin on Friday with prelims at 9 a.m. and finals at 6 p.m.

Only three Arena Pro Swim Series meets remain including this weekend’s event in Charlotte, Santa Clara and Indianapolis.

NBC Sports Live Extra will stream Saturday’s and Sunday’s final sessions live. NBC Sports Network will air tape-delayed television coverage of the meet from noon to 3 p.m. The entire meet will also be live streamed at usaswimming.org.

THURSDAY’S EVENTS

WOMEN

1500-meter freestyle:

1.Ashley Twichell, Cal Aquatics 16:11.19, 2. Kristel Kobrich, CHI 16:16.15, 3. Gillian Ryan, Michigan 16:32.21.

800-meter freestyle:

1.Cammile Adams, SwimMAC 8:33.79, 2. Verity Abel, Duke 8:49.52.

MEN

800-meter freestyle:

1.Connor Jaeger, Club Wolverine 7:54.49, 2. Zane Grothe, Badger 7:57.00, 3. Marcelo Acosta, Azura 8:05.79.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

SOFLO’s Alia Atkinson Finishes Second On Final Day Of Austin Arena Pro Swim Series


By Sharon Robb

January 17, 2016—Alia Atkinson of South Florida Aquatic Club finished second in her signature event on the third and final day of the Arena Pro Swim Series Sunday at University of Texas Lee & Jamail Texas Swimming Center in Austin.

The three-time Jamaican Olympian, despite being broken down from heavy training, finished second in the 100-meter breaststroke in 1:07.47.

Atkinson, 27, was first at the turn and was leading by 5/100ths of a second before being overtaken by Katie Meili in 1:06.75.

Atkinson was the top seed going into the race after swimming 1:07.38 in morning prelims.

“Every meet and every race is a learning experience,” Meili said.

“It’s great we have so many amazing breaststrokers here. I am lucky to have that competition all the time.”

2012 U.S. Olympian Claire Donahue, was second in the “B” final of the 200-meter butterfly in 2:14.28.

Teenager Kathleen Golding, 15, turned in another good swim in the 200-meter individual medley which she has a U.S. Olympic Trial cut time in. Golding finished 38th in 2:21.84 in morning prelims.

In other championship finals:

Women’s 200-meter butterfly: Cammile Adams of Texas led from wire-to-wire to win in 2:08.21. “I just wanted to come out and put in a good effort into it so I am happy with that,” she said. “We are definitely putting a lot of pressure on ourselves at this meet. I need work on my start and getting out faster in the first 100.”

Men’s 200-meter butterfly: Without Michael Phelps in the field, the race was wide open. Singapore’s Quah Zheng Wen came from behind to win in. The 19-year-old is trained by former Bolles coach Sergio Lopez, now national team director for Singapore.

Men’s 100-meter breaststroke: Andrew Wilson, 22, of Texas won a close four-man race in the final five meters in 1:00.42. “I just tried to be an animal at the wall.”

Women’s 100-meter backstroke: Hungarian Katinka Hosszu, the third seed, held off a charging Missy Franklin, who came back from fourth place, after a poor start and dolphin kick, in 59.91. Franklin finished in 1:00.03.

Men’s 100-meter backstroke: 6-foot-8 Matt Grevers out-reached Bolles alum Ryan Murphy to win in 53.35. Murphy was second in 53.46. “We are always pushing each other, we are making each other better and faster as individuals,” he said.

Women’s 200-meter individual medley: Hosszu, 16 minutes after winning the 100 backstroke, took a two-body length lead early in the race to win her second event of the night in 2:10.69. “I am really excited, I feel like I am ahead of where I was last year at this time,” she said. “I just tried to slow my breathing down and clear my head after the 100 back. It’s more mental than anything else.”

Men’s 200-meter individual medley: Michael Phelps, 30, turned it on in the last five meters to win a close race against rival Ryan Lochte. Both were dead even for most of the exciting race. Phelps accelerated into the wall to win in 1:58.00.

“Ryan and I have had a lot of great swims with each other,” Phelps said. “I knew we were going to try and battle it out. I knew it would come down to the touch. I am very pleased with that. I am picking up the small things at meets like this like turns and underwaters. I am happy again. It’s a pretty incredible feeling. Right now I am loving life. I am enjoying it a lot more.”

Women’s 800-meter freestyle: Ashley Twichell, 26, of Triangle Aquatics won in 8:41.23 in a close race against Olivia Anderson, 16, of Etobicoke in 8:41.71.

Men’s 1500-meter freestyle: Tunisian Ous Mellouli, 31, swimming unattached, won convincingly in 15:19.94, just off his seed time of 15:18.02. Tobia Robinson, 19, of Great Britain was second in 15:22.23.

Austin was the second stop in the seven-meet series. The series offers $350,000 in prize money. Each meet winner earns $1000, runners-up $600 and third place $200. A $10,000 bonus will be awarded to the overall male and female series winners. The next series is the March 3-5 in Orlando at the YMCA Aquatic Center.

SUNDAY RESULTS

WOMEN

200-meter butterfly: 1. Cammile Adams, SwimMAC 2:08.21, 2. Audrey Lacroix, HPC-Ontario 2:10.14; SOFLO: 10. Claire Donahue 2:14.28.

100-meter breaststroke: 1. Katie Meili, SwimMAC 1:06.75, 2. Alia Atkinson, SOFLO 1;07.47, 3. Molly Hannis, Tennessee Aquatics 1:07.50; SOFLO: 55. Lisa Blackburn 1:14.11.

100-meter backstroke: 1. Katinka Hosszu, Hungary 59.91, 2. Missy Franklin, Colorado Stars 1:00.03, 3. Kathleen Baker, California 1:00.04; SOFLO: 23. Carolina Colorado 1:03.47.

200-meter individual medley: 1. Katinka Hosszu, Hungary 2:10.69, 2. Melanie Margalis, St. Petersburg 2:12.67, 3. Sarah Henry, Aggie Swim Club 2:12.77; SOFLO: 38. Kathleen Golding 2:21.84, 55. Carolina Colorado 2:23.55, 87. Lisa Blackburn 2:31.31.

800-meter freestyle: 1. Katie Ledecky, Nation’s Capital 8:06.68, 2. Becca Mann, North Baltimore 8:24.49, 3. Lotte Friis, North Baltimore 8:27.23.

MEN

200-meter butterfly: 1. Quah Zheng Wen, Singapore 1:58.07, 2. Simon Sjodin, Sweden 1:58.27, 3. Andrew Seliskar, Unattached 1:58.47.

100-meter breaststroke: 1. Andrew Wilson, Longhorn Aquatics 1:00.42, 2. Kevin Cordes, Singapore 1:00.53, 3. Sam Tierney, Missouri 1:00.63; SOFLO: 50. Kile Aukerman 1:06.44.

100-meter backstroke: 1. Matt Grevers, Tucson Ford Dealership 53.35, 2. Ryan Murphy, Unattached 53.46, 3. David Plummer, New York Athletic Club 53.50.

200-meter individual medley: 1. Michael Phelps, North Baltimore 1:58.00, 2. Ryan Lochte, SwimMAC 1:58.43, 3. Josh Prenot, Unattached 1:59.94.; SOFLO: 54. Kile Aukerman 2:11.41.

1500-meter freestyle: 1. Ous Mellouili, Unattached 15:19.94, 2. Tobia Robinson, Great Britain 15:22.23, 3. Anton Ipsen, NCS 15:17.51.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

Golding Swims Best Time; Atkinson, Donahue Make Finals On Day One Of Arena Pro Swim Series


By Sharon Robb

January 15, 2016—Kathleen Golding, the youngest member of South Florida Aquatic Club’s contingent, led the team Friday at the Arena Pro Swim Series at University of Texas Lee & Jamail Texas Swimming Center in Austin.

Golding, 15, a freshman at Cooper City High School, swam a best time in the 100-meter freestyle in 58.43, bettering her previous best of 59.49.

She also went 4:26.97 in the 400-meter freestyle, just off her best time of 4:26.30.

Golding has the 200 and 400 individual medley events left to swim.

Four of SOFLO’s ProFlo group competed on opening day, with two of its Olympians making finals.

Three-time Jamaican Olympian Alia Atkinson, 27, was seventh in the 200-meter breaststroke final in 2:29.77, slower than her morning swim of 2:29.18 that earned her the No. 6 seed. She was also 73rd in the 100-meter butterfly in 1:03.67.

Atkinson has four events remaining: the 100 breaststroke; 50 and 200 freestyle; and 200 individual medley.

2012 U.S. Olympian Claire Donahue, 27, was seventh in the 100-meter butterfly in 59.44. She was seeded seventh after going 59.89 in prelims. Donahue will also compete in the 200 butterfly and 50 freestyle.

Two-time Colombian Carolina Colorado was 39th in the 100-meter butterfly in 1:02.05.

Colorado is also swimming the 100 and 200 backstroke, 50 freestyle and 200 individual medley.

Kile Aukerman was 50th in the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:23.82, just off his best time. He had four events remaining: 100 breaststroke, 200 and 400 individual medley and 50 freestyle.

Bermuda national champion Lisa Blackburn, who scratched from the 200 breaststroke, is scheduled to swim the 100 breaststroke and 200 individual medley.

In other championship finals:

Sarah Sjostrom, 22, of Sweden won the 100-meter freestyle in 53.12, the first of two U.S. Open records for the night and outsprinting Katie Ledecky, 18, of Nation’s capital in 53.75. Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu was fourth in 54.37. Sjostrom also won the 100-meter butterfly in 56.38 followed by Dana Vollmer in 57.61 and Noemie Thomas (58.38).

Californian Nathan Adrian topped a loaded men’s field including top-seeded Frenchman Jeremy Stravius to win the 100-meter freestyle in 48.91. Most of the field (Jimmy Feigen, Santo Condorelli, Ryan Lochte, Michael Phelps, Matt Grevers, Michael Chadwick) could end up being the U.S. Olympic Trials final lineup.

Laura Sogar of Bluefish won the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:24.69.

Josh Prenot, 22, swimming unattached, came up with a big win in the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:10.26.

Michael Phelps poured it on in the last 25 meters to win the 100-meter butterfly in 51.94 against a stacked field that included rival Ryan Lochte of SwimMAC, fifth in 52.73.

Teenager Katie Ledecky, 18, of Nation’s Capital, on world record pace during her swim, won the 400-meter freestyle in a pool record 3:59.54, fifth fastest time ever.

In a close race, Frenchman Jordan Pothain, 21, won the men’s 400-meter freestyle in 3:50.06, just ahead of Michael McBroom, 24, in 3:50.17.

The three-day meet resumes Saturday with prelims at 9 a.m. and finals 6 p.m. Central Standard Time.

The meet will be televised on same-day delay on Universal HD Saturday and Sunday from 9:30-11 p.m. EST. NBC Sports Live Extra will stream the Jan. 16-17 finals. A live webcast of both the prelims and finals will be at the usaswimming.org website.

Austin is the second stop in the seven-meet series. The series offers $350,000 in prize money. Each meet winner earns $1000, runners-up $600 and third place $200. A $10,000 bonus will be awarded to the overall male and female series winners. Ledecky and Conor Dwyer lead the series after the first meet.

FRIDAY RESULTS

WOMEN

100-meter freestyle: 1. Sarah Sjostrom, Sweden 53.12, 2. Katie Ledecky, Nation’s Capital 53.75, 3. Abby Weitzeil, Canyons Aquatic 54.00; SOFLO: 91. Kathleen Golding, 58.43, best time.

200-meter breaststroke: 1. Laura Sogar, Bluefish 2:24.69, 2. Molly Hannis, Tennessee Aquatics 2:26.73, 3. Anna Belousova, Nation’s capital 2:26.76; SOFLO: 7. Alia Atkinson 2:29.77.

100-meter butterfly: 1. Sarah Sjostrom, Sweden 56.38, 2. Dana Vollmer, Cal Aquatics 57.61, 3. Noemie Thomas, California 58.38; SOFLO: 7. Claire Donahue 59.44.

400-meter freestyle: 1. Katie Ledecky, Nation’s Capital 3:59.54, 2. Leah Smith, Unattached 4:04.74, 3. Becca Mann, North Baltimore 4:07.09; SOFLO: 66. Kathleen Golding 4:26.97.

MEN

100-meter freestyle: 1. Nathan Adrian, Cal Aquatics 48.91, 2. Jeremy Stravius, France 48.96, 3. Jimmy Feigen, NY Athletic Club 49.20.

200-meter breaststroke: 1. Josh Prenot, unattached 2:10.26, 2. Nic Fink, Athens Bulldogs 2:10.51, 3. Kevin Cordes, Unattached 2:10.63; SOFLO: 50. Kile Aukerman 2:23.82.

100-meter butterfly: 1. Michael Phelps, North Baltimore 51.94, 2. Tom Shields, Cal Aquatics 52.39, 3. Tim Phillips, SwimMAC 52.61.

400-meter freestyle: 1. Jordan Pothain, France 3:50.06, 2. Michael McBroom, Woodlands 3:50.17, 3. Madsen Glaesner, Trojan Swim Club 3:50.81.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

SOFLO’s Lisa Blackburn Swims Lifetime-Best On Day Two Of Minneapolis Arena Pro Swim Series


By Sharon Robb

November 14, 2015—Bermuda national record holder Lisa Blackburn of South Florida Aquatic Club swam a lifetime-best during second day action in the Arena Pro Swim Series Friday at University of Minnesota Aquatic Center in Minneapolis.

Blackburn, at 43, one of the oldest swimmers in the meet, turned in a 26.77 in the 50-meter freestyle. Her seed time was 27.50. It was the first time she broke 27.1. She has now turned in three lifetime-bests this year.

Blackburn is one of two 43-year-olds in the meet. Erika Braun of Marlins of Raleigh is the other.

Several other Florida swimmers did well during the meet.

Marcelo Acosta, 19, of Azura Florida Aquatics was among top finishers, placing second in the 400-meter freestyle in 3:53.57 after going 3:54.84 in prelims, which earned him the second seed.

Florida alum Conor Dwyer won the 400-meter freestyle by two body lengths in 3:53.47. True Sweetser, 18, of Gator Swim Club tied for sixth in 3:58.19. Joey Pedraza of RallySport Aquatics was 16th in 4:07.43 after going 4:02.83 in prelims.

Canadian and Bolles alum Santo Condorelli was second in the 50-meter freestyle in 22.24 behind Nathan Adrian in 21.56. Bolles alum George Bovell of Trinidad and Tobago was fourth in 22.44 and Elvis Burrows of Trinity Prep was eighth in 22.86.

Gator Swim Club’s Arkady Vyatchanin was third in the 100-meter backstroke in 54.45. SwimMAC’s Ryan Lochte of Daytona Beach was fourth in 55.24 after going 55.02 in prelims. Former American Heritage swimmer Dylan Carter of Trinidad and Tobago was 16th in 56.97 after going 56.82 in prelims.

St. Petersburg’s Melanie Margalis, 23, one of the early leaders, finished fifth in the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:27.73.

St. Andrew’s alum Rachael Bradford-Feldman, 18, a freshman at Louisville, finished tenth in the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:32.55, slower than her prelim time of 2:32.49, both Olympic Trials cut times.

Andreina Pinto, 24, of Gator Swim Club was fifth in the 200-meter butterfly in 2:14.87 after going 2:14.28 in prelims.

In other finals:

WOMEN

200-meter butterfly: Cammile Adams of SwimMAC pulled away in the final 50 meters to win in 2:08.16. Former Clearwater swimmer Becca Mann of North Baltimore was fourth in 2:11.16.

50-meter freestyle: Brazilian Etien Medeiros broke open a close three-woman race to win in 24.92. She broke the pool record in prelims in 24.73.

100-meter backstroke: Olympian Missy Franklin reeled in the early leaders to win in 1:00.18. Early leader Rachel Bootsma faded to fourth in 1:01.02. Thirteen-year-old Regan Smith of Riptide Swim Team won the “B” final in 1:01.49 holding off Kendyl Stewart of Trojan Swim Club in 1:01.95.

200-meter breaststroke: Minnesota’s Kierra Smith came from behind to win in 2:24.73. Minnesota’s Haley Spencer was second in 2:26.92.

400-meter freestyle: Teenage world record holder Katie Ledecky, 18, of Nation’s Capital had no problem winning by more than a body length in 4:02.67.

MEN

200-meter butterfly: Chase Kalisz of North Baltimore won after trailing 18-time Olympic gold medalist and training mate Michael Phelps for most of the race until the final 20 meters. Kalisz won in 1:58.07 and Phelps was second in 1:58.38. The pair were swimming stroke for stoke in the final 20 meters.

50-meter freestyle: California’s Nathan Adrian pulled away early to win in 121.56.

100-meter backstroke: David Plummer, 30, of New York Athletic Club won in 52.85. Plummer went out in 25.59.

200-meter breaststroke:

University of Louisville’s Carlos Claverie of Venezuela held off Nick Fink of Athens Bulldogs to win in 2:10.86. Fink was second in 2:10.93.

On the third and final day, Saturday’s events are: 200 individual medley, 200 backstroke, 100 freestyle, 800 freestyle and 1500 freestyle.

Prelims are 10 a.m. and finals 7 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The meet is being live streamed at usaswimming.org.

The Arena Pro Swim Series is the first of seven stops. The circuit will award a record $350,000 in total prize money. The top three finishers in each event win $1,000, $600 and $200. The overall point series winners will earn an additional $10,000 in bonus money and one-year lease for a BMW.

FRIDAY RESULTS

WOMEN

200-meter butterfly:

1.Cammile Adams, SwimMAC 2:08.16, 2. Hannah Saiz, SSTY 2:10.37, 3. Haley Anderson, TROJ 2:10.77; FLORIDA: 13. Andreina Pinto, GSC 2:14.87, 23. Vien Nguyen, STA 2:18.93, 35. Elizabeth Beisel, GSC 2:20.02, 43. Claire Donahue, SOFLO 2:22.81.

50-meter freestyle:

1.Etiene Medeiros, Brazil 24.92, 2. Simone Manuel, Unattached 24.94, 3. Abbey Weitzell, CANY 25.07; FLORIDA: 18. Sveta Khakhlova, Club Seminole 25.73, 21. Chin Pigot, Unattached 26.04, 30. Rhi Jeffrey, APEX 26.41, 50. Lisa Blackburn, SOFLO 26.77, 53. Claire Donahue, SOFLO 26.86, 66. Stephanie Peacock, MV 27.06, 68. Justine Bowker, T2 Aquatics 27.15, 87. Carolina Colorado, SOFLO 28.72, 88. Michel Konkoly, T2 Aquatics 29.24.

100-meter backstroke:

1.Missy Franklin, STAR 1:00.18, 2. Kylie Masse, UTS 1:00.31, 3. Dominique Bouchard, OAK 1:00.66; FLORIDA: 40. Carolina Colorado, SOFLO 1:05.35.

200-meter breaststroke:

1.Kierra Smith, Unattached 2:24.36, 2. Haley Spencer, MINN 2:26.92, 3. Martha McCabe, TSC 2:17.23; FLORIDA: 5. Melanie Margalis, SPA 2:27.73, 9. Justine Bowker, T2 Aquatics 2:30.85, 10. Rachel Bradford-Feldman, LOU 2:32.55, 45. Elizabeth Beisel, GSC 2:45.03.

400-meter freestyle:

1.Katie Ledecky, Nation’s Capital 4:02.67, 2. Leah Smith, Unattached 4:04.67, 3. Becca Mann, NB 4:07.67; FLORIDA: 5. Stephanie Peacock, MV 4:08.23, 10. Melanie Margalis, SPA 4:11.52, 14. Vien Nguyen, SA 4:16.15, 23. Andreina Pinto, GSC 4:22.94.

MEN

200-meter butterfly:

1.Chase Kalisz, NBAC 1:58.07, 2. Michael Phelps, NBAC 1:58.38, 3. Grant Shoults, MVN 2:00.41; FLORIDA: 10. Sebastian Rousseau, GSC 2:02.10, 32. Dan Wallace, GSC 2:09.61.

50-meter freestyle:

1.Nathan Adrian, CAL 21.56, 2. Santo Condorelli, CANY 22.24, 3. Brad Tandy, FORD 22.27; FLORIDA: 4. George Bovell, CW 22.44, 8. Elvis Burrows, TP 22.86, 13. Renzo Tjon A Joe, Unattached 22.98, 53. Teo D’Alessandro, Princeton 23.84, 90. Kile Aukerman, SOFLO 25.00.

100-meter backstroke:

1.David Plummer,NYAC 52.85, 2. Grigory Tarasevich, LOU 54.28, 3. Arkady Vyatchanin,NYAC 54.45; FLORIDA: 4. Ryan Lochte, SwimMAC 55.24, 16. Dylan Carter, Unattached 56.97, 31. Pavel Sankovich, Club Seminole 57.96, 37. Niki Denisyako, GSC 58.48, 50. Sebastien Rousseau, GSC 59.68.

200-meter breaststroke:

1.Carlos Claverie, LOU 2:10.86, 2. Nicolas Fink, ABSC 2:10.93, 3. Cody Miller, BAD 2:13.91; FLORIDA: 41. Eduardo Solaeche-Gomez, GSC 2:25.98, 45. Matt Limbacher, T2 Aquatics 2:27.19, 47. Kile Aukerman, SOFLO 2:27.35, 54. Nick D’Innocenzo, GSC 2:29.28.

400-meter backstroke:

1.Conor Dwyer, TROJ 3:48.11, 2. Marcelo Acosta, Azura 3:53.57, 3. Connor Jaeger, CW 3:55.23; FLORIDA: 6. True Sweetser, GSC 3:58.19, 16. Joey Pedraza, RACE 4:07.43, 19. Dan Wallace, GSC 4:03.49, 43. Carlos Omana, GSC 4:08.46, 44. Alex Gomez, GSC 4:08.49.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

http://www.swim4soflo.com

Margalis, Dwyer Win; SOFLO’s Donahue Seventh On Opening Day Of Minneapolis Arena Pro Swim Series


By Sharon Robb

November 12, 2015—South Florida Aquatic Club’s Claire Donahue was seventh in the 100-meter butterfly on opening day of the Arena Pro Swim Series Thursday at University of Minnesota Aquatic Center in Minneapolis.

Donahue, 26, went out fast in her signature event and led the field in 26.89 but faded in the back half in 32.25 to finish in 59.14, off her morning time of 59.07.

SOFLO’s Lisa Blackburn, 43, national record holder for Bermuda, finished the 100-meter breaststroke in 1:14.67. SOFLO teammate Kile Aukerman, 22, finished the 100-meter breaststroke in 1:06.99. Teammate Carolina Colorado finished the 100-meter butterfly in 1:02.29.

Melanie Margalis of St. Petersburg and Florida alum Conor Dwyer were top Florida finishers. Margalis, 23, of St. Petersburg started off strong and held off Micah Lawrence down the final stretch to win the 100-meter breaststroke in 1:07.44. Margalis was also fifth in the 200-meter freestyle in 1:58.11.

Dwyer, now swimming for Trojan Swim Club, won the 200-meter freestyle in 1:47.88.

Other Top 8 finishers with Florida connections were:

Ryan Lochte of Daytona Beach and SwimMAC was second in the 200-meter freestyle in 1:48.66 after nearly catching Dwyer in the final 50 meters.

Bolles alum and Canadian Santo Condorelli was second in the 100-meter butterfly in 52.58. Condorelli went out fast to grab the early lead in 24.4 but was reeled in by Giles Smith in the final 10 meters in 52.57, just 1/100th of a second ahead of Condorelli. Michael Phelps, coming off three weeks of high altitude training in Colorado Springs, was third in 52.99.

The men’s 100-meter butterfly featured two other swimmers with Florida ties. Pavel Sankovich of Club Seminole was fourth in 53.25. Lochte was disqualified.

South African Sebastien Rousseau of Gator Swim Club was fourth in the 400-meter individual medley in 4:25.93. Training mate Dan Wallace of Great Britain was tenth in 4:27.29.

Vietnam’s Vien Nguyen of St. Augustine was eighth in the 400-meter individual medley in 4:45.15.

Olympian Elizabeth Beisel of Gator Swim Club was fifth in the 400-meter individual medley before being disqualified.

U.S. Olympic gold medalist Claire Donahue of South Florida Aquatic Club was seventh in the 100-meter butterfly in 59.14. Donahue went out fast in 26.89 for the first 50 to lead in but faded down the stretch.

In other championship finals:

Women’s 200-meter freestyle: Teenager Katie Ledecky of Nation’s Capital topped an impressive women’s field to win in 1:55.37. Missy Franklin of Colorado Stars was second in 1:56.73 and Allison Schmitt of North Baltimore was third in 1:57.28

Men’s 100-meter breaststroke: Sam Tierney, 22, won in 1:00.82. Cody Miller of Badger was second in 1:00.86. Brazilian Felipe Lima was fifth in 1:01.35.

Women’s 100-meter butterfly: Kelsi Worrell won in a Louisville school record 57.91 . U.S. Olympic gold medalist and former world record holder Dana Vollmer, back in the pool after the birth of her first child, was second in 58.07.

Women’s 400-meter individual medley: Former Clearwater swimmer Becca Mann of North Baltimore pulled away from Olympian Caitlin Leverenz to win in a pool record 4:37.04. Leverenz was second in 4:39.10.

Men’s 400-meter individual medley: Chase Kalisz of North Baltimore Aquatic Club won in 4:18.50. Tyler Clary of SwimMAC was second in 4:21.01.

Friday’s events are: 200 butterfly, 50 freestyle, 100 backstroke, 200 breaststroke and 400 freestyle.

Prelims are 10 a.m. and finals 7 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The meet is being live streamed at usaswimming.org.

The Arena Pro Swim Series is the first of seven stops. The circuit will award a record $350,000 in total prize money. The top three finishers in each event win $1,000, $600 and $200. The overall point series winners will earn an additional $10,000 in bonus money and one-year lease for a BMW.

THURSDAY RESULTS

WOMEN

200-meter freestyle: 1. Katie Ledecky, NC 1:55.37, 2. Missy Franklin, STARS 1:56.73, 3. Allison Schmitt, NBAC 1:57.28; FLORIDA: 5. Melanie Margalis, SPA 1:58.11, 13. Becca Mann, NBAC 2:00.21, 32. Elizabeth Beisel, GSC 2:06.92, 35. Vien Nguyen, St. Augustine 2:03.89, 40. Andreina Pinto, Gator Swim Club 2:04.31, 97. Chin Pigot, Unattached 2:10.14.

100-meter breaststroke: 1. Melanie Margalis, SPA 1:07.44, 2. Micah Lawrence, MAC 1:07.45, 3. Andee Cottrell, KY 1:08.14; FLORIDA: 11. Justine Bowker, T2 Aquatics 1:09.9141. Lisa Blackburn, SOFLO 1:14.67.

100-meter butterfly: 1. Kelsi Worrell, KY 57.91, 2. Dana Vollmer, CAL 58.07, 3. Noemie Thomas, CAL 58.23; FLORIDA: 7. Claire Donahue, SOFLO 59.14, 28. Justine Bowker, T2 Aquatics 1:01.84, 32. Carolina Colorado, SOFLO 1:02.29, 34. Rhi Jeffrey, Apex 1:02.35, 66. Svetlana Khakhlova, Club Seminoles 1:04.94, 71. Chin Pigot, Unattached 1:06.40.

400-meter individual medley: 1. Becca Mann, NBAC 4:37.04, 2. Caitlin Leverenz, CAL 4:39.10, 3. Katie Ledecky, NC 4:39.18; FLORIDA: 5. Elizabeth Beisel, GSC 4:43.12, 9. Vien Nguyen, STA 4:45.15, 35. Andreina Pinto, Gator Swim Club 5:01.41.

MEN

200-meter freestyle: 1. Conor Dwyer, TROJ 1:47.88, 2. Ryan Lochte, SwimMAC 1:48.66, 3. Joao De Lucca, CARD 1:49.06; FLORIDA: 39. Teo D’Alessandro, Bolles/Princeton 1:54.76, 55. Eduardo Solaeche-Gomez, Gator Swim Club 1:55.83, 77. Niki Denisyako, Gator Swim Club 1:57.35, 79. Arkady Vyatchanin, Gator Swim Club/New York Athletic Club 1:57.48, 101. Alex Gomez, Gator Swim Club 2:00.20, 110. Carlos Omana, Gator Swim Club 2:01.02.

100-meter breaststroke: 1. Sam Tierney, Unattached 1:00.82, 2. Cody Miller, Badger 1:00.86, 3. Carlos Claverie, LOU 1:01.19; FLORIDA: 40. George Bovell, Bolles/Club Wolverine 1:05.56, 43. Eduardo Solaeche-Gomez, Gator Swim Club 1:06.26, 53. Kile Aukerman, SOFLO 1:06.99, 56. Nick D’Innocenzo, Gator Swim Club 1:07.77.

100-meter butterfly: 1. Giles Smith, PHOE 52.57, 2. Santo Condorelli, CA 52.58, 3. Michael Phelps, NBAC 52.99; FLORIDA: 4. Pavel Sankovich, SEM 53.25, 38. Arkady Vyatchanin, Gator Swim Club/New York Athletic Club 56.43, 47. Niki Denisyako, Gator Swim Club 57.13.

400-meter individual medley: 1. Chase Kalisz, NBAC 4:18.50, 2. Tyler Clary, MAC 4:21.01, 3. Corey Okubo, PRIN 4:23.89; FLORIDA: 4. Sebastien Rousseau, GSC 4:25.93, 10. Dan Wallace, GSC 4:27.29, 18. Carlos Omana, GSC 4:34.41, 20. Eduardo Solaeche-Gomez, GSC 4:35.39, 35. Joey Pedraza, RallySport Aquatics 4:42.89, 36. Nicholas Sweetser, Gator Swim Club 4:43.81.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

http://www.swim4soflo.com

Olympic Gold Medalist Claire Donahue Leads SOFLO Contingent At Minneapolis Arena Pro Swim Series


By Sharon Robb

November 11, 2015—A Who’s Who in swimming will compete at the 2015-16 Arena Pro Swim Series opener Thursday at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center in Minneapolis.

U.S. Olympic gold medalist Claire Donahue of South Florida Aquatic Club will be joined by Elizabeth Beisel, Hilda Luthersdottir, Dan Wallace and Arkady Vyatchanin of Gator Swim Club, Ryan Lochte of Daytona Beach, St. Augustine’s Vien Nguyen, Melanie Margalis of St. Petersburg, Pavel Sankovich of Club Seminole and Bolles alum George Bovell as part of a strong Florida contingent.

Olympic champions Missy Franklin, Michael Phelps, Katie Ledecky and Nathan Adrian, among 50 national team swimmers, make the three-day meet one of the most attended by top name swimmers.

An added bonus for international swimmers training for the Rio Summer Olympics is that the meet is a FINA-approved competition where swimmers can achieve qualifying times for the 2016 Olympic Games including SOFLO’s Lisa Blackburn, a national record holder for Bermuda. At 43, Blackburn is the oldest swimmers in the field. Erika Erndl, 37, of T2 Aquatics is also entered.

Blackburn will compete in the 50-meter freestyle, 100-meter breaststroke and 200-meter individual medley.

Donahue, who has been training well at her new training base in South Florida, will swim the 50-meter freestyle and 100- and 200-meter butterfly events.

Also entered in the 100 butterfly is 2012 Olympic gold medalist and former world record holder Dana Vollmer, who has returned to the pool after giving birth to her first child.

SOFLO swimmer Kile Aukerman, 22, will compete in four events: 50-meter freestyle, 100- and 200-meter breaststroke races and 200-meter individual medley.

Phelps is scheduled to compete in six events over three days. He is entered in the 100- and 200-meter butterfly, 200-meter individual medley, 100- and 200-meter freestyle and 100-meter backstroke.

Among his events, Lochte, 31, is entered in the 400-meter freestyle, an off-event for the SwimMAC swimmer.

Thursday’s events are the 200-meter freestyle, 100-meter breaststroke, 100-meter butterfly and 400-meter individual medley.

Prelims are 10 a.m. and finals 7 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The meet will be live streamed at usaswimming.org.

The Arena Pro Swim Series is the first of seven stops. The circuit will award a record $350,000 in total prize money. The top three finishers in each event win $1,000, $600 and $200. The overall point series winners will earn an additional $10,000 in bonus money and one-year lease for a BMW.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

http://www.swim4soflo.com

SOFLO’s Atkinson Takes Third; Marinheiro Finishes Well On Final Day Of Santa Clara Arena Pro Swim Series


By Sharon Robb

June 22, 2015—Olympian Alia Atkinson, rising star Jorge Murillo Valdes and up-and-coming national team swimmer Melissa Marinheiro led South Florida Aquatic Club on the fourth and final day of the Santa Clara Arena Pro Swim Series Sunday at George F. Haines International Swim Center.

Alia Atkinson, 26, took third in the 50-meter breaststroke against a fast field that featured winner Yulia Efimova and Jessica Hardy.

The three-time Jamaican Olympian and short course world record holder, finished in 31.01, slower than her 30.54 Charlotte swim that ranks her third in the world.

Atkinson also swam the 200-meter individual medley in 2:23.86, failing to make any 200 IM final.

SOFLO teammate Jorge Murillo Valdes of Colombia was fifth in the men’s 50-meter breaststroke in 28.56.

SOFLO head coach Chris Anderson was impressed with Melissa Marinheiro’s racing. The Florida Gulf Coast-bound swimmer, who is getting back into serious training, finished 21st in the 800-meter freestyle in 9:08.14 on the final day.

In other Sunday championship finals:

Women 800-meter freestyle:

Denmark Olympian Lotte Friis, 26, of North Baltimore Aquatic Club pulled away early in the race and went on to win in 8:25.33. North Baltimore had four swimmers in the final including runner-up Sierra Schmidt, 17, in a best time 8:28.91 and former Clearwater swimmer Becca Mann, also training at North Baltimore, third in 8:30.02. Friis and several of her teammates now head to Colorado Springs for altitude training before the World Championships in Kazan.

Women 200-meter individual medley:

Hungarian Katinka Hosszu, 26, who has been training in South Florida, led after the backstroke leg and was one second under her U.S. Open record pace early in the race. She won in 2:09.19, second fastest time in the world this year and just missing her own U.S. Open record. Caitlin Leverenz, 24, of Cal Aquatics was second in 2:11.52 and Yulia Efimova, 23, of Trojan Swim Club was third in 2:12.91.

Men 200-meter individual medley:

Michael Phelps, 29, of North Baltimore won his second event of the meet in 1:59.39. He was the only swimmer to crack 2 minutes. Josh Prenot, 21, of Cal Aquatics was second in 2:00.43 and Chase Kalisz, 21, of North Baltimore was third in 2:02.33. Phelps led after the backstroke with a half-body length lead and was at 1:31.08 headed into freestyle. It was the 22-time Olympic medalist’s first of three events of the day. “The hard work is paying off, I’m happy,” Phelps said. “It was a good weekend for me to build confidence this summer. I had some goals I wanted to hit. I hit one, I guess one is better than none. I can see a lot of little improvements now.”

Women 200-meter backstroke:

Katinka Hosszu held off Maya DiRado, 22, of Stanford Swimming in the final 20 meters to win her second event of the night in 2:07.93. DiRado finished second in 2:08.50 and Missy Franklin, coming off a three-month absence from racing, was third in 2:09.84. Two-time Colombian Olympian Carolina Colorado of South Florida Aquatic Club was forced to scratch from the event because of illness.

“I haven’t raced this tired in a long time,” Franklin said. “Overall, I am really happy where I am right now. My strokes felt strong but there wasn’t a lot of speed there.”

Men’s 200-meter backstroke

Bolles alum and California junior Ryan Murphy continued his domination of the backstroke events. After winning the 100 backstroke, Murphy blew past the field in the 200-meter backstroke winning by nearly a full body-length in 1:57.06. His 100 split was 56.89.

Murphy, ranked ninth in the world (1:56.91), now returns to training for three weeks before heading to the World Championships in Kazan with his U.S. teammates.

“It was good to race in a meet setting, I didn’t expect to go that fast,” Murphy said. “I have been racing these guys for a while. This was reassurance that I can compete with these guys.”

Tyler Clary of SwimMAC was second in 1:59.32 and Cal teammate Jacob Pebley was third in 1:59.82. The trio was the only swimmers to go under 2 minutes.

Michael Phelps, after winning the 200-meter individual medley, was ninth in 2:04.11. Phelps competed in three events on the final day.

Women 50-meter breaststroke:

Yulia Efimova, 23, of Trojan Swim Club, coming off a 16-month doping suspension, won in 30.37, second fastest time in the world this year. Jessica Hardy, 28, of Trojan Swim Club was second in 30.94. It was Efimova swept all three breaststroke events. “I am so happy to be coming back, it is so exciting, no pressure,” Efimova said.

Men 50-meter breaststroke:

Brazilian Felipe Lima, 30, of Fiat Minas, won in 27.65 ahead of Glenn Snyders in 28.11 and Chuck Katis in 28.32. SOFLO’s Jorge Murillo Valdes, 23, was fifth in 28.56.

Women 100-meter freestyle:

Olympian Femke Heemskerk, 27, of the Netherlands won in 53.64. Simone Manuel, 18, of Stanford Swimming was second in 54.29 and Allison Schmidt, 25, of North Baltimore was third in 54.85. Franklin was sixth in 55.49.

Men 100-meter freestyle:

Vladimir Morozov, 23, of Trojan Swim Club won in 49.28 just ahead of Argentine Federico Grabich in 49.50 and Brazilian Nicolas Oliveira was third in 49.60.

Men 1500-meter freestyle:

Connor Jaeger, 24, of Club Wolverine pulled away from Michael McBroom, 24, of The Woodlands to win in 14:56.43. McBroom’s time was 15:02.56 and Tunisian Ous Mellouli was third in 15:18.02. Gator Swim Club’s True Sweetser, 17, was fifth in 15:26.20.

The four-day meet was the sixth and final stop of the 2014-15 Arena Pro Swim Series.

The meet served as a final tune-up for several major meets this summer including the Pan American Games, World Championships, World University Games, USA Nationals and Los Angeles Invitational.

The top three finishers earned $1,000, $600 and $200 in prize money and five, three and one points for points standings.

Defending series champions Conor Dwyer, a Florida alum, and Hosszu clinched the series titles for the second consecutive year. Each won $10,000 as series points leaders. Dwyer finished with $12,200 in race earnings and 61 points. Hosszu won $18,600 and totaled 93 points. Caitlin Leverenz won the BMW lease for a year since she is a U.S. citizen. Florida alum Elizabeth Beisel finished third with $7,700 and 38.5 points. Atkinson finished with $1,800 in prize money.

SUNDAY RESULTS

WOMEN

800-meter freestyle:

1.Lotte Friis, Denmark/North Baltimore 8:25.33, 2. Sierra Schmidt, North Baltimore 8:28.91, 3. Becca Mann, North Baltimore 8:30.02; FLORIDA: 5. Andreina Pinto, Gator Swim Club 8:32.94, 21. Melissa Marinheiro, South Florida Aquatic Club 9:08.14, 24. Daniella Van den Berg, Azura Florida Aquatics 9:11.82.

200-meter individual medley:

1.Katinka Hosszu, Hungary 2:09.19, 2. Caitlin Leverenz, Cal Aquatics 2:11.52, 3. Yulia Efimova, Trojan Swim Club 2:12.91; FLORIDA: 45. Alia Atkinson, South Florida Aquatic Club 2:23.86,

200-meter backstroke:

1.Katinka Hosszu, Hungary 2:07.93, 2. Maya DiRado, Stanford 2:08.50, 3. Missy Franklin, Colorado Stars 2:09.84; FLORIDA: 16. Tasija Karosas, Longhorn Aquatics 2:16.36.

50-meter breaststroke:

1.Yulia Efimova, Trojan Swim Club 30.37, 2. Jessica Hardy, Trojan Swim Club 30.94, 3. Alia Atkinson, South Florida Aquatic Club 31.01.

100-meter freestyle:

1.Femke Heemskerk, Netherlands 53.64, 2. Simone Manuel, Stanford 54.29, 3. Allison Schmitt, North Baltimore 54.85.

400-meter medley relay:

1.Argentina 4:12.72, 2. Mexico 4:13.05, 3. Palo Alto Stanford 4:20.55.

MEN

200-meter individual medley:

1.Michael Phelps, North Baltimore 1:59.39, 2. Josh Prenot, Cal Aquatics 2:00.43, 3. Chase Kalisz, North Baltimore 2:02.33; FLORIDA: 25. Marco Guarente, Azura Florida Aquatics 2:08.90.

200-meter backstroke:

1.Ryan Murphy, Cal Aquatics 1:57.06, 2. Tyler Clary, SwimMAC 1:59.32, 3. Jacob Pebley, Cal Aquatics 1:59.82; FLORIDA: 54. Timothy Wynter, South Florida Aquatic Club 2:11.74

50-meter breaststroke:

1.Felipe Lima, Fiat Minas 27.65, 2. Glenn Snyders, Trojan Swim Club 28.11, 3. Chuck Katis, Cal Aquatics 28.32; FLORIDA: 5. Jorge Murillo Valdes, South Florida Aquatic Club 28.56, 26. Marco Guarente, Azura Florida Aquatics 30.09.

100-meter freestyle:

1.Vladimir Morozov, Trojan Swim Club 49.28, 2. Federico Grabich, Argentina 49.50, 3. Nicolas Oliveira, Fiat Minas 49.60; FLORIDA: 7. Dylan Carter, Trojan Swim Club 49.81, 47. Corey Main, Gator Swim Club 51.66, 67. Mitch D’Arrigo, Gator Swim Club 52.70, 84. Bayley Main, Gator Swim Club 53.31, 92. Timothy Wynter, South Florida Aquatic Club 53.57, 112. Julien Pinon, South Florida Aquatic Club 54.22.

1500-meter freestyle:

1.Connor Jaeger, Club Wolverine 14:56.43, 2. Michael McBroom, The Woodlands 15:02.56, 3. Ous Mellouli, Trojan Swim Club 15:18.02; FLORIDA: 5. True Sweetser, Gator Swim Club 15:26.20, 7. Marcelo Acosta, Azura Florida Aquatics 15:29.22, 20. Franco Lupoli, Azura Florida Aquatics 15:53.72.

400-meter medley relay:

1.Argentina 3:45.44, 2. Mexico 3:48.27, 3. Fiat Minas 3:50.44.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

http://www.swim4soflo.com

SOFLO’s Alia Atkinson Wins On Final Night Of Charlotte Arena Pro Swim Series


By Sharon Robb

May 17, 2015—-Still looking for a confidence-building swim, Alia Atkinson got one on the final night of the 31st annual Arena Pro Swim Series at Mecklenburg County Aquatic Center in Charlotte, N.C.

The three-time Jamaican Olympian and world record holder from South Florida Aquatic Club stepped up and won in convincing fashion to close out the four-day meet on a good note Sunday in front of a sellout crowd and national television audience.

Atkinson, 26, won her first event of the meet in the 50-meter breaststroke in 30.54, second fastest time in the world this year and just 7/100ths of a second ahead of Olympian Jessica Hardy.

Atkinson had the fastest start off the blocks and broke the water first with a quick turnover to finish strong by out-touching Hardy.

Hardy was closing in fast but was short on the finish as Atkinson had the momentum going into the wall. Hardy finished in 30.61, fourth fastest time in the world.

“It’s a pretty good time considering my 100 and 200 breaststrokes were a bit iffy,” Atkinson said. “I am glad I could turn out a good 50. I am looking forward to a good summer and will see if I can do both the Pan American Games and World Championships.”

Atkinson also made the “C” final of the 100-meter freestyle where she finished eighth in 58.42 and 24th overall. Her prelims time was 57.49.

Two-time Colombian Olympian Carolina Colorado, 27, of SOFLO was eighth in the 200-meter backstroke in 2:15.99 after going 2:14.53 in prelims. Colombian teammate Jorge Murillo Valdes, 23, was seventh in the 50-meter breaststroke in 28.47 bettering his prelim time of 28.63.

Bermuda national champion and SOFLO teammate Lisa Blackburn, at 43 the oldest swimmer in the field, won the “C” final in an impressive 33.96 after going 34.12 in prelims.

Timothy Wynter, 19, was sixth in the “D” final of the 200-meter backstroke and 30th overall in 2:11.15.

After watching Michael Phelps win the “B” final of the 200-meter individual medley in 2:00.25 in a “statement swim” Olympian Ryan Lochte came back with his own “statement swim” to win the “A” final in 1:57.20.

Lochte, 30, looked like the old Ryan Lochte taking out the race with powerful strokes to finish with the third fastest time in the world this year in the event he holds the world record in.

“It’s definitely a confidence-booster,” Lochte said. “We were watching Michael’s race in the ready room and he was out like a bullet. I knew he was going to put up a good time. I wish he was in our heat, but when it counts he will be there.

“That swim helps my confidence. Last year was a little rocky. Now I’m back training and feeling good in the water. Things are getting better for my overall confidence and attitude. I feel great.”

In the “B” final, Phelps won by more than a body length in 2:00.25 after swimming 2:03.06 in the morning. Had he done that time in the morning it would have been the fastest qualifying time for the final and would have placed him sixth overall in the final.

Less than 20 minutes later after the 200 IM, Lochte was challenged with the second half of a tough double and managed to finish third in the 200 backstroke in 1:58.96, six seconds off his best time, despite dying in the last 50 meters.

“The coaches said they could see my face for the last 15 meters of the backstroke and I was like crying in my goggles,” Lochte said. “I was in so much pain. I watched the video, I could just see my stroke fall apart at the end. But the time was still good. I felt like I had a good meet.”

Three other swimmers with Florida ties did well on the final night.

Although overshadowed by Iron Lady Katinka Hosszu of Hungary in the 200-meter individual medley, Melanie Margalis, 23, of St. Petersburg had a great swim to finish second in 2:10.57.

Clara Smiddy, 19, of Club Wolverine and AquaKids Sharks was third in the 200-meter backstroke in 2:12.27, the top American finisher in the event.

Two-time Bahamian Olympian and Bolles alum Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace, 25, of SwimMAC just missed sweeping the sprint freestyles, finishing second and just 7/100ths of a second behind 32-year-old veteran Natalie Coughlin in 54.31.

In other championship finals:

Women’s 800-meter freestyle: Denmark’s Lotte Friis pulled away early in the race and went on to win in 8:25.07, the sixth best time in the world this season. Friis returned to the Top 10 in the world for the first time this year. Former Clearwater swimmer Becca Mann finished two body lengths behind her in second in 8:28.82.

“I was consistent, that is my specialty my coach calls me a Swiss clock,” Friis said. “I felt comfortable. My goal was to do better than last season here and I did so I am happy.”

Women’s 200-meter individual medley: Hungarian Katinka Hosszu won her best event in 2:08.66, a full second faster than the fastest time in the world this year and her fifth win in the meet. Mann, 17, gets the Iron Girl award for finishing the 800 and less than five minutes later returning to the blocks for the second race of the night. Swimming in Lane 4, Mann was among the early leaders and had a great final 50 to tie for third in 2:16.32.

“I just tried to be aggressive and see where I am at right now with my training,” Hosszu said. “I am really, really happy with this time. It is definitely a really good time for me and I am really excited. This gives me a lot of confidence heading into the summer. I am excited to go back and train.”

Women’s 200-meter backstroke: Just fifteen minutes after winning the 200 IM, Hosszu went a best time 2:07.79 to win. It was the third fastest time in the world this year. Even Hosszu was surprised at her time on the scoreboard, throwing her arms up in disbelief.

Men’s 200-meter backstroke: Arkady Vyatchanin of Serbia and New York Athletic Club won his second event of the meet sweeping the backstroke events in a Serbian record 1:56.31, fourth fastest time in the world this season. Defending Olympic champion Tyler Clary was second in 1:58.43. Carlos Omana, 22, of Metro Aquatics was fourth in the “B” final.

“I had the same approach and same goal in the 100, I wanted everything faster than Mesa so it is good because it happened,” Vyatchanin said. “It is a good time for me. Of course, I am motivated by great racing with these guys and doing this. They are great competitors. The fact I was a little bit faster gives me a little more motivation. I am taking baby steps in the right direction.”

Men 50-meter breaststroke: Brazil’s Felipe Lima, who used to train in South Florida, won the 50-meter breaststroke in 27.72.

“This meet is part of practice for the Pan American Games and World Championships, two big meets ahead,” Lima said. “I am very happy with this time. Now I can go back home and start working next week. I am very confident with myself. I am training hard every day to achieve my goals. I am really happy with results here at this meet.”

Women 100-meter freestyle: Olympic veteran Natalie Coughlin, 32, of Cal Aquatics closed in on early leader Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace of SwimMAC to win in 54.24, just 7/100ths of a second ahead of the Bahamian Olympian.

“I have Santa Clara next and then Pan Ams which I am super excited about,” Coughlin said. “I still love this. I love the process of it. I get to work with amazing people. I have great teammates and coach. I love training, the day to day struggle.”

Men 100-meter freestyle: Top qualifier Nathan Adrian, 26, of Cal Aquatics out-touched Italian Marco Orsi to win in 48.85.

“That second 50 I need to be a lot faster, at least a full second faster,” Adrian said. “I will take this time tonight since we are in some tough training now. This summer it will be about execution. If I can execute a race the way I want to then the time will take care of itself. This is the first time I raced in a while so I’m happy.”

Phelps tied for third in “B” final in 49.96. Brazilian Cesar Cielo, seventh fastest qualifier in morning prelims, scratched from the final.

Men’s 1500-meter freestyle: Connor Jaeger, 24, of Club Wolverine made it look easy, winning in 14:58.13, third fastest time in the world. Egypt’s Ahmed Akaram, 18, swimming unattached, broke the national record.

The Arena Pro Swim Series wraps up in Santa Clara, Calif. June 18-21 where SOFLO is expected to send another large contingent.

SUNDAY RESULTS

WOMEN

800-meter: 1. Lotte Friis, Denmark 8:25.07, 2. Becca Mann, North Baltimore 8:28.82, 3. Leah Smith, Cavalier Swimming 8:29.28; FLORIDA GOLD COAST: 19. Casey Francis, Unattached 9:03.49.

200-meter individual medley: 1. Katinka Hosszu, Hungary 2:08.66, 2. Melanie Margalis, St. Petersburg 2:10.57, 3. Caitlin Leverenz, Cal Aquatucs 2:11.84; FLORIDA GOLD COAST: 24. Emily Kopas, Michigan/Swim Fort Lauderdale 2:22.80, 72. Lisa Blackburn, SOFLO 2:28.07

200-meter backstroke: 1. Katinka Hosszu, Hungary 2:07.79, 2. Dominique Bouchard, Team Ontario 2;10.25, 3. Clara Smiddy, Club Wolverine 2:12.27; FLORIDA GOLD COAST: 8. Carolina Colorado, SOFLO 2:15.99.

50-meter breaststroke: 1. Alia Atkinson, South Florida Aquatic Club 30.54, 2. Jessica Hardy, Trojan Swim Club 30.61, 3. Breeja Larson, Unattached 31.01; FLORIDA GOLD COAST: 11. Emily Kopas, Michigan/Swim Fort Lauderdale 33.14, 14. Evita Leter, Metro Aquatics 33.41, 17. Lisa Blackburn, SOFLO 33.96.

100-meter freestyle: 1. Natalie Coughlin, Cal Aquatics 54.24, 2. Arianna Wallace-Vanderpool, SwimMAC 54.31, 3. Chatal Van Landeghem, Canada 54.65; FLORIDA GOLD COAST: 24. Alia Atkinson, SOFLO 58.42, 79. Isabella Paez, Metro Aquatics 59.78.

400-meter medley relay: 1. SwimMAC 4:07.07, 2. Team Ontario 4:12.27, 3. Canada 4:13.81.

MEN

200-meter individual medley: 1. Ryan Lochte, SwimMAC 1:57.20, 2. Josh Prenot, Cal Aquatics 1:58.98, 3. Thiago Pereira, Brazil 1:59.51; FLORIDA GOLD COAST: 15. Carlos Omana, Metro Aquatics 2:05.99, 18. Juan Sequera, Metro Aquatics 2:06.04.

200-meter backstroke: 1. Arkady Vyatchanin, New York Athletic Club 1:56.31, 2. Tyler Clary, SwimMAC 1:58.43, 3. Ryan Lochte, SwimMAC 1:58.96; FLORIDA GOLD COAST: 12. Carlos Omana, Metro Aquatics 2:03.47, 30. Timothy Wynter, SOFLO 2:11.15.

50-meter breaststroke: 1. Felipe Lima, Brazil 27.72, 2. Cody Miller, Badger 27.95, 3. Brendan McHugh, Greater Philadelphia 28.01; FLORIDA GOLD COAST: 7. Jorge Murillo Valdes, SOFLO 28.47, 25. Juan Sequera, Metro Aquatics 29.84.

100-meter freestyle: 1. Nathan Adrian, Cal Aquatics 48.85, 2. Marco Orsi, Italy 49.06, 3. Joao De Lucca, Brazil 49.21; FLORIDA GOLD COAST: 102. Timothy Wynter, SOFLO 53.77.

1500-meter freestyle: 1. Connor Jaeger, Club Wolverine 14:58.13, 2. Ahmed Akaram, Egypt 15:07.84, 3. Ryan Feeley, Badger 15:38.09.

400-meter medley relay: 1. Brazil 3:38.62, 2. SwimMAC 3:42.44, 3. Team Ontario 3:49.52.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

http://www.swim4soflo.com