COLLEGE ROUNDUP: SOFLO’s Oliver, O’Shaughnessy Win; FSU Women Remain Undefeated

COLLEGE ROUNDUP: SOFLO’s Oliver, O’Shaughnessy Win; FSU Women Remain Undefeated

October 29, 2011


Florida State women’ swimming and diving team extended its season winning streak to eight with wins over Virginia Tech, Duke and UNC-Wilmington Saturday in Christiansburg, Va.

The Seminoles (8-0 overall, 3-0 ACC) defeated Atlantic Coast Conference opponents Virginia Tech, 169-129, and Duke, 179-155 and also defeated UNC-Wilmington, 222-76.

FSU sophomore Tiffany Oliver won the 50-yard freestyle in 23.21 and was second in the 100-yard freestyle in a pool record 50.53. Oliver led off the winning 400-yard freestyle relay that also won in a pool record time of 3:26.14.

The Seminoles “A” 200-yard medley relay, with Oliver anchoring, was disqualified for early take-off.

SOFLO’s Ashley Hicks led off the Seminoles “B” 200-yard medley relay that finished fourth in 1:45.48.

Hicks was also fourth in the 100-yard backstroke in 56.94 and 13th in the 200-yard backstroke in 2:07.62.

SOFLO’s Melissa Cooper was third in the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:04.92.

The Seminole men’s team (5-1, 1-1) defeated Duke, 177-121, and UNC-Wilmington, 211.5-86.5 but lost to Virginia Tech, 182.5-117.5.

SOFLO’s Alex Rodriguez was sixth in the 200-yard breaststroke in 2:08.49 and eighth in the 100-yard breaststroke in 58.66.

Rodriguez and Paul Murray were members of the disqualified “A” 200-yard medley relay.

Murray was fifth in the 50-yard freestyle in 21.02 and ninth in the 100-yard freestyle in 46.95. Murray was a member of the 400-yard freestyle relay team that was second in a pool record 3:03.72.

For the third straight meet, FSU senior Mateo De Angulo of Colombia won all three of his individual races in the 1,000-yard freestyle (9:22.90), 200-yard freestyle (1:39.17) and 500-yard freestyle (4:32.76). De Angulo is nine-for-nine in first places this season.

“I thought the team did well,” FSU coach Neil Harper said after the meet. “It was a great experience to get a meet in at the pool where ACCs are.

“We need to learn to be tougher on the road and fight through adversity and when things aren’t going our way. We’ll continue to train and do well this year.”

The Seminoles travel to Gainesville to take on University of Florida on Wednesday at 5 p.m.

O’Shaughnessy Leads Seton Hall

SOFLO’s Ryan O’Shaughnessy won two events, one relay and finished second in another individual event to lead undefeated Seton Hall to a 216-84 win over Lafayette and 162-136 victory over Loyola Saturday on the road in Baltimore.

The junior won the 100-yard butterfly in 51.74 and 200-yard individual medley in 1:55.91 and was second in the 100-yard breaststroke in 59.29 just getting out-touched by Lafayette’s Cory Schutz.

He was also a member of the Pirates’ winning 200-yard medley relay that won in 1:36.10.

On Tuesday, Seton Hall will host Iona College and O’Shaughnessy will share the same pool deck with former Coral Springs Swim Club and SOFLO swimmer Justin Grigull of Iona.

Florida Gulf Coast Tops Florida Atlantic

Florida Gulf Coast won seven events to spoil Florida Atlantic University’s season-opener on Saturday.

Princeton also competed but used the meet as a scrimmage meet since Ivy League rules forbid teams to compete before November.

“It was a good team effort and we are working very hard right now,” said Florida Gulf Coast coach Neal Studd, a former FAU coach. “The girls are very tired and sore so all things considered, it was a good day.”

SOFLO’s Eszter Bucz, 20, a national record holder in Hungary, led the Owls with three wins. She won the 400-yard individual medley in 4:28.10, 500-yard freestyle in 4:59.41 and 200-yard individual medley in 2:07.36.

She was also a member of FAU’s second-place 200-yard medley relay that finished in 1:47.17.

SOFLO’s Anthony Fermin anchored the winning 200-yard medley relay  with the fastest split of 21.06 for the 1:35.37 relay. Fermin also swam second leg on the winning 200-yard freestyle with a 21.14 split and winning time of 1:25.50

Fermin was fifth in the 50-yard freestyle in 22.08 and sixth in the 100-yard freestyle in 48.84.

Fort Lauderdale Aquatics’ Damaris Iriondo, a freshman at Princeton, returned home for the first time for the college meet. She was eighth in the 200-yard freestyle in 1:57.52 and fifth in the 500-yard freestyle in 5:09.31.

Florida Gulf Coast travels to Boston this week to face ACC foe Boston College, with SOFLO’s Brittany Williford, and Maine on Friday at 5 p.m.


Former Douglas swimmer Catalina Mendieta of Parkland, a senior at James Madison University, was second in the 50-yard freestyle in 24.68 in her team’s 156-144 win over West Virginia at the WVU Natatorium on Saturday. James Madison won seven events and had nine second place finishes. Mendieta also was a member of the winning 200-yard freestyle relay (1:36.49) and 200-yard medley relay (1:47.22) teams.

Sharon Robb can be reached at

AQUATIC NOTEBOOK, Issue 88: SOFLO’s Oliver, Hicks, Cooper, Rodriguez Final At All-Florida Invitational

AQUATIC NOTEBOOK, Issue 88: SOFLO’s Oliver, Hicks, Cooper, Rodriguez Final At All-Florida Invitational

October 8, 2011


For the second night in a row, Florida State sophomore Tiffany Oliver was the top South Florida Aquatic Club finisher Saturday night at the second annual All-Florida Invitational at the University of Florida’s Stephen O’Connell Natatorium.

Oliver, 19, was fifth in the 200-yard freestyle in 1:52.25 in the final after swimming 1:51.40 in morning prelims.

Three other SOFLO swimmers, all Florida State swimmers, also qualified for championship finals.

Ashley Hicks, 19, a sophomore, was sixth in the 100-yard backstroke in 57.55, bettering her prelim time of 57.57.

Melissa Cooper, 19, coming off shoulder surgery after transferring from Texas A&M, was eighth in the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:06.97. She qualified for finals in 1:06.20.

Alex Rodriguez, 20, a Florida Atlantic transfer, was seventh in the 100-yard breaststroke in 59.20, bettering his prelim time of 59.47. He was also a member of the runner-up 200-yard medley relay team.

Oliver and Cooper were members of the Seminoles’ 200-yard medley relay that finished third in 1:43.98. Cooper, 19, swam breaststroke leg and Oliver anchored. Ashley Hicks led off FSU’s fifth place “B” relay that finished in 1:45.97. Oliver also led off the third-place 800-yard freestyle relay that fiished in 7:29.45.

In diving, Miami’s Sam Dorman won the men’s 1-meter springboard with 369.60, a day after winning the 3-meter title.

Host Florida, buoyed by talent and depth, remained in the lead after two days of competition. The Gators’ men’s and women’s team combined for twelve individual and relay wins.

Florida State is second and Florida Gulf Coast women’s team is third.

“We had a great day today, some very fast swims for this early in the season,” FGCU coach Neal Studd said. “The 200 medley relay team was awesome and we gave Florida all they could handle. The team is doing well learning how to handle a three-day format.

“We are having fun as a team and it’s a great group to be around.”

The meet concludes on Sunday.



1.Florida 748, 2. Florida State 643, 3. Florida Gulf Coast 425, 4. University of Miami 358, 5. Florida Atlantic 232, 6. Florida International 184, 7. North Florida 87, 8. Florida Southern 62, 9. Nova Southeastern 49.


200-yard medley relay: 1. Florida 1:42.63 (Alana Pazevic, Hilda Luthersdottrir, Sarah Bateman, Ellese Zalewski), 2. Florida Gulf Coast 1:43.37, 3. Florida State 1:43.98 (McKayla Lightborn, Melissa Cooper, Ginny Grams, Tiffany Oliver), 5. FSU “B” 1:45.97 (Ashley Hicks, Kendall Sieron, Elizabeth Pepper, Kaitlyn Dressel); 7. FAU 1:47.80 (Iwona Lefanowicz, Eszter Bucz, Frida Nilsson, Jonna Nyback); 9. Miami 1:49.09 (Hannah Kling, Dana Hatic, Kayla Smith, Katherine Nicholson); 12. Nova Southeastern 1:52.70 (Ashley Aranda, Ewa Jamborska, Emma Lawrenz, Linea Cutter).

400-yard individual medley: 1. Teresa Crippen, UF 4:13.24, 2. Rebecca Rainer, UF 4:19.20, 3. Angelina Ballatore, UF 4:21.52; SOFLO: 7. Eszter Bucz, FAU 4:28.28.

100-yard butterfly: 1. Sarah Bateman, UF 53.76, 2. Teresa Crippen 55.08, 3. Ellese Zalewski, UF 55.79; SOFLO: 19. Ashley Hicks, FSU 58.98, 52. Dana Hatic, UM 1:03.00, 59. Linea Cutter, NSU 1:04.30.

200-yard freestyle: 1. Jamie Bohunicky, UF 1:47.98, 2. Elizabeth Beisel, UF 1:48.05, 3. Natasha Fung, UF 1:50.15; SOFLO: 5. Tiffany Oliver, FSU 1:52.25, 55. Linea Cutter, NSU 1:59.26.

100-yard breaststroke: 1. Hilda Luthersdottir, UF 1:03.62, 2. Dani Beaubrun, FGCU 1:03.87, 3. Rebecca Rainer, UF 1:04.04; SOFLO: 8. Melissa Cooper, FSU 1:06.97, 11. Dana Hatic, UM 1:07.20, 26. Eszter Bucz, FAU 1:09.29.

100-yard backstroke: 1. Elizabeth Beisel, UF 55.04, 2. Sarah Bateman, UF 55.74, 3. Teresa Crippen, UF 55.75; SOFLO: 6. Hicks, FSU 57.55.

800-yard freestyle relay: 1. Florida “B” 7:20.94 (Kirsten Smith, Natasha Fung, Kaitlin Frehling, Elizabeth Beisel), 2. Florida “A” 7:22.17, 3. Florida State 7:29.45 (Tiffany Oliver, Ginny Grams, Elizabeth Pepper, Charlotte Broadbent), 6. FAU 7:42.39 (Frida Nilsson, Annette Kovacs, Eszter Bucz, Jonna Nyback), 11. NSU 7:54.45 (Erin Black, Lauren Chapple, Ashley Aranda, Linea Cutter).


1.Florida 737, 2. Florida State 678, 3. Florida Atlantic 448, 4. Florida Southern 347, 5. Nova Southeastern 314, 6. University of Miami 40.


200-yard medley relay: 1. Florida 1:31.20, 2. Florida State 1:32.98 (Brad Morrison, Alex Rodriguez, David Sanders, Mark Weber), 3. Florida “B” 1:33.46, 5. FAU 1:34.86 (Ross Gunn, Alan Forbes, Eric Williams, Anthony Fermin).

400-yard individual medley: 1. Matt Elliott, UF 3:50.96, 2. Eduardo Solaeche Gomez, UF 3:51.24, 3. Dan Wallace, UF 3:56.70.

100-yard butterfly: 1. Marcin Cieslak, UF 48.85, 2. Cameron Martin, UF 49.76, 3. Mikolaj Czarnecki, FAU 49.85; SOFLO: 29. Anthony Fermin, FAU 53.97, 39. Paul Murray, FSU 55.20.

200-yard freestyle: 1. Mateo De Angulo, FSU 1:39.49, 2. Nicholas Caldwell, UF 1:39.79, 3. Connor Signorin, UF 1:39.89.

100-yard breaststroke: 1. Matt Elliott, UF 55.64, 2. Eduardo Solaeche Gomez 56.77, 3. Miguel Ferreira, FSO 57.49; SOFLO: 7. Alex Rodriguez, FSU 59.20; SOFLO: 17. Doug Ramos, FSU 1:03.00, 23. Anthony Fermin, FAU 1:04.12, 25. Paul Murray, FSU 1:04.63.

100-yard backstroke: 1. Jeb Halfacre, FSO 50.04, 2. Connor Signorin, UF 50.77, 3. Matt Curby, UF 51.01.

800-yard freestyle relay: 1. Florida 6:45.52, 2. FSU 6:49.58, 3. Florida Atlantic 6:55.92.


Chad le Clos of South Africa finished up the opening leg of the World Cup with three more gold medals, bringing his two-day total to six golds Saturday night, the final night of the FINA/ARENA Swimming World Cup Series in Dubai.

“If we had this in South Africa, we would be over the moon,” said Le Clos, who totaled $9,000 in prize money for two days of work. “It’s been an amazing two days for me.

Le Clos won the 100-meter butterfly (50.66), 200-meter individual medley (1:55.14) and 200-meter backstroke (1:55.95).

In the men’s 50-meter freestyle, Kenya’s Jason Dunford and Hungary’s Krisztian Takacs tied in 21.78.

The series now moves on to Stockholm, Sweden on Oct. 15-16.


Australia’s Craig Alexander won his third Ironman World Championship with a course record-breaking performance Saturday in the Hawaii Ironman in Kailua-Kona.

The 38-year-old Aussie, who also won in 2008 and 2009, finished in 8 hours, 3 minutes and 56 seconds despite cramping in the final miles of the run.

The previous course record was 8:04:08 by Belgium’s Luc Van Lierde in 1996.

“I wish I could tell you how it feels,” Alexander told reporters. “It’s unbelievable. I wish everyone in the world could feel what I felt in that last mile. It’s the finish I’ve been dreaming of.”

Ironman first-timer Pete Jacobs, also an Aussie, was second in 8:09:11. Germany’s Andreas Raelert was third in 8:11:07.

In the women’s race, Britain’s Chrissie Wellington came from behind to win her fourth world title in 8:55:08. The 34-year-old, despite severe road rash suffered two weeks ago during a bike training ride, ran the last 100 yards carrying a large Union Jack flag.

“This race means more to me than anything,” Wellington said. “I just proved that anything is possible. It’s the sweetest victory. I had to dig so deep today. I tried to have faith in my body.”

Defending champion Mirinda Carfrae of Australia was second in 8:57:57 and Britain’s Leanda Cave was third in 9:03:29.

The course was 140.6 miles including a 2.4-mile ocean swim, 112-mile bike and 26.2-mile run. Temperatures reached 135 degrees during the bike ride through the lava fields.

Alexander and Wellington each received $110,000 for their wins…

Adam Otstot of Williamsburg, Va. and Jolene Wilkinson of Boise, Idaho won titles in the USA Triathlon Long Course National Championships Saturday at the Marina Inn at Grand Dunes, Myrtle Beach, S.C. The course was a 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike and 13.1-mile run. Otstot won in 3:59, nearly eight minutes faster than the rest of the field. Wilkinson won in 4:35:58, 12 minutes ahead of the women’s field. Top local finishers were Karen Paxton of North Palm Beach, the masters female winner and 40-44 age group winner in 4:47:52 and Roland Samuelson, also of North Palm Beach, winner of the 70-74 age group in 6:45:07.

Sharon Robb can be reached at


PLANTATION—The Comets had a big opening night at the Florida Gold Coast Senior Swimming Championships at the Plantation Central Park Aquatic Complex.


PLANTATION—The Comets had a big opening night at the Florida Gold Coast Senior Swimming Championships at the Plantation Central Park Aquatic Complex.

Ashley Hicks, 18, won the women’s 200-yard backstroke Friday in 2 minutes and 04.40 seconds, bettering her prelim time of 2:06.69. Her career-best is 1:59.86.

After a quick warm down, Hicks came back and finished eighth in the 100-yard freestyle in 54.37, slower than her morning prelim time of 54.24.

“I felt pretty strong in my backstroke,” Hicks said. “I was a little nervous, you never know how you are going to do but I was happy with my swim. I did want to go faster but it was a pretty short season. It was a good swim. I just wanted to see what I could do.

“My freestyle was okay,” Hicks said. “I didn’t have a lot of time between events.”

Hicks, a senior at Coral Springs Charter who lives in Sunrise, is one of three Comets headed to Florida State in the fall. Tiffany Oliver and Tyler Sell also signed with the Seminoles after outstanding high school careers.

“It’s always a hard decision choosing a college, it’s a big decision that affects your life,” Hicks said. “I am really happy with my decision. I am glad I stayed with swimming. It’s done so much for me. I have gotten so many good results out of it.”

Hicks swims three events on Saturday and three more on Sunday. She said she is using this weekend’s meet as a stepping stone to bigger meets this summer before beginning a new chapter in college swimming.

FSU coach Neil Harper expects Hicks to make an immediate impact as a freshman.

“Ashley will come to FSU and make an immediate impact in the 100 and 200s of freestyle and especially backstroke,” Harper said after signing her. “She has a beautiful technique that once our training schedule kicks in will be able to race and rival the best in the ACC.”

Another Comets champion Friday night was Tiffany Oliver, 17, who won the women’s 100-yard freestyle in 51.90, faster than her prelim time of 52.33. Her career-best is 50.32. Club mate Melissa Fernandez, 17, was second in 52.63, bettering her prelim time of 53.79. Her seed time was 52.44.

Oliver was also fourth in the 200-yard backstroke in 2:10.49, bettering her prelim time of 2:13.09.

Oliver, a senior at Cypress Bay who lives in Southwest Ranches, is another outstanding addition to the Seminoles’ recruiting class.

“Tiffany has amazing potential,” Harper said. “I am still amazed how fast she has swum to this point. She had instant chemistry with our staff and is excited about her future at Florida State.”

Other Top 20 girls’ finishers were:

*15-16 200-yard backstroke: 5. Amy Lunak, 16, career-best 2:15.11, bettering previous best of 2:16.19; 11. Madeleine Fernandez, 15, career-best 2:19.70, bettering 2:21.45; 15. Belinda De La Torre, 15, 15th, career-best 2:24.29, bettering 2:25.36; 16. Nicolle Garcia, 16, career-best 2:24.43, bettering 2:26.67; 20. Juana Vargas, 16, 2:26.14.

*15-16 100-yard freestyle: 9. Katie Brennan, 16, 56.11; 20. Juana Vargas, 16, 57.62.

*Open 100-yard freestyle: 15. Brittany Williford, 17, 56.64; 17. Bianca Muniz, 18, 56.94.

*15-16 200-yard butterfly: 10. Juana Vargas, 16, 2:20.31; 15. Chloe Sell, 15, 2:24.51.

*Open 200-yard butterfly: 13. Stephanie Freiria, 17, 2:32.53.

*15-16-yard breaststroke: 18. Amy Lunak, 16, 35.48.

*Open 50-yard breaststroke: 9. Bianca Muniz, 18, 34.04.

*15-16 500-yard freestyle: 9. Katie Brennan, 16, 5:20.64; 16. Chloe Sell, 15, 5:34.08.

*Open 500-yard freestyle: 6. Brittany Williford, 17, 5:21.64.


Marc Rojas, 16, was the Comets’ top boys finisher after capturing the 15-16 50-yard breaststroke in 28.05, bettering his prelim time of 28.66. His seed time was 27.99.

In one of the most exciting races of the night, Rojas outsprinted Daniel Spas, 15, of Heritage Aquatics who finished in 28.07.

Rojas then went the distance by finishing fifth in the 15-16 500-yard freestyle in 4:49.14 after swimming 4:46.65 in prelims. His seed time was 4:44.79.

The versatile Tyler Sell was second in the 500-yard freestyle in 4:36.38, bettering his prelim time of 4:45.38. He was also third in the men’s 200-yard butterfly in 1:56.09, bettering his prelim time of 1:58.70.

Other Top 20 boys’ finishers were:

*15-16 200-yard backstroke: 11. Ivan Parada, 15, career-best 2:02.02, bettering 2:02.64; 15. Paul Guarino, 15, career-best 2:08.77, bettering 2:01.21.

*Open 200-yard backstroke: 3. Carlo Morante, 17, 1:59.46; 10. Gabriel Pena, 17, 2:10.20; 11. Andrew Ling, 17, 2:07.71.

*15-16 100-yard freestyle: 12. Marc Rojas, 16, career-best 49.82, bettering 50.52.

*Open 100-yard freestyle: 16. Andrew Ling, 17, 50.64.

*15-16 200-yard butterfly: 18. Mike Franco, 15, 2:05.57.

*Open 200-yard butterfly: 8. Travis Lockie, 18, 2:00.50; 12. Gabriel Pena, 17, 2:05.81; 13. Julio Simon, 18, 2:12.50.

*Open 50-yard breaststroke: 6. Andrew Ling, 17, career-best 29.86, bettering 31.54; 7. James Shultz, 18, career-best 30.06, bettering 30.89.

*Open 500-yard freestyle: 5. Carlo Morante, 17, 4:50.61; 6. Travis Lockie, 18, 4:55.47; 10. Gabriel Pena, 17, 5:10.40; 13. Julio Simon, 18, 5:20.18.

After Day One, the team point leaders are Fort Lauderdale Aquatics, Metro Aquatics, Plantation Swim Team and AK Sharks.

The Comets and Coral Springs Swim Club swimmers are swimming unattached during the 120-day mandatory period before the teams merge into the South Florida Aquatic Club (SOFLO).

The opening day’s competition featured 319 swimmers in the field. It is the first time the Florida Gold Coast separated the senior swimmers from the Junior Olympic swimmers into two meets.

The three-day meet continues today with prelims at 9 a.m. and finals at 5 p.m. Admission is $3 per session and $2 heat sheets. For information call 954-452-2526.

Sharon Robb can be reached at