FINA World Short Course Swimming Championships Begin Tuesday In China, Monday Night U.S. Time With Strong South Florida Connection


By Sharon Robb

HANGZHOU, China, December 9, 2018—Four-time Olympian Alia Atkinson of Jamaica and South Florida Aquatic Club is favored to repeat as world champion at the 14th FINA World Short Course Championships which begin Tuesday in China (Monday night in the U.S.).

Atkinson, the defending world champion and record holder, is seeded first in the 50-meter breaststroke in 28.56 among a less than stellar field. Ruta Meilutyte of Lithuania is seeded second in 29.36 and American Molly Hannis is third in 29.51. The prelims and semifinals are on opening day and finals the following day.

Atkinson, 29, broke her own world record at the FINA World Cup in Budapest on Oct. 6. She swam 28.56 breaking her previous mark of 28.64 which she set in Tokyo, Oct. 26, 2016.

The short course worlds are swum in short course meters and held in the years when FINA does not hold its world championships (currently this means in even years). The short course championship is swimming-only where world championships feature all five aquatic disciplines.

The World Short Course Championships have always been a meet where Atkinson has taken center stage. She was the first Jamaican swimmer to win a medal when she took silver in the 50 breaststroke in 2012 in Turkey. And, in 2014 she the first Jamaican to win a gold medal at the meet when she won the 100 breaststroke in Doha, Qatar.

SOFLO coach Chris Anderson is serving as the Jamaican team coach. Anderson has coached Atkinson since 2001 and has played a huge role in her success. Jamaican Breanna Roman had also qualified but withdrew because of illness.

SOFLO’s Abby Oyetunji, a Somerset Academy alum, is representing Nigeria in her world short course debut. Oyetunji has been swimming with SOFLO since 2011. She is one of four swimmers competing for Nigeria and one of only two women.

Patrick Groters, a NSU University School alum and Pine Crest Swimming Club swimmer, will represent Aruba. His older brother, Jordy, is graduating from Missouri this week.

American Heritage Plantation alum Dylan Carter of Trinidad and Tobago will compete in five events. Doral and Metro Aquatic Club alum Isabella Paez will represent Venezuela.

Azura Florida Aquatics will be well-represented with current and alum swimmers coached by NSU University School coach Gianluca Alberani. Current swimmers are Sidrell Williams of Jamaica, Pedro Chiancone of Uruguay and Celina Marquez of El Salvador. Three alumni swimmers are Marcelo Acosta of El Salvador, Elisa Funes of El Salvador and Jhonny Perez of the Dominican Republic.

Other swimmers with Florida connections are Clay alum and Bolles Swimming Club swimmer Caeleb Dressel; Bolles alum Ryan Murphy; Melanie Margalis of St. Petersburg Aquatics; Vietnam’s Anh Vien Nguyen of St. Augustine Swim Team; Coral Springs Swim Club alum Abbas Qali and Plantation American Heritage alum Yousef Alaskari of Kuwait; and Westlake Prep alum Renzo Tjon-A-Joe of Surinam.

Other meet highlights:

USA Swimming’s five team captains are two-time Olympian Matt Grevers, three-time Olympic gold medalist Ryan Murphy, 2016 Olympic gold medalist Kelsi Worrell Dahlia, Madison Kennedy and Leah Smith. The U.S. team features 17 women and 18 men. The only top-seeded American male is Michael Andrew in the 100 IM. Kelsi Worrell Dahlia is the only American woman seeded first in the 100 butterfly. The women’s team will be coached by Brian Smith (Athens Bulldogs) and men’s team Dave Salo (Trojan Swim Club).

The U.S. team arrived in Hangzhou six days ago to give them twice as much time to adjust to the time zone as the 2018 Pan Pacific Championships they had in Tokyo last summer.

American Michael Andrew leads all male swimmers entered in five individual events. Teammate Leah Smith is entered in four women’s races.

Top names missing from the U.S. roster are five-time Olympic champion Katie Ledecky, seven-time world champion Simone Manuel, two-time world champion Chase Kalisz, two-time Olympic champion Lilly King and Olympic champion Nathan Adrian.

Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu is entered in eight events, six of which she won at the 2016 Windsor Worlds. She will swim all three backstroke events, 100 and 200 butterfly and all three individual medley races. Hosszu is the world record holder in the short course 100 back, 200 back, 100 IM and 200 IM.

Hangzhou is the capital city of Zhejiang province and its economic, cultural, science and educational center, Hangzhou is one of the central cities in the Yangtze River Delta. It also is a popular City of Scenic Tourism, ranking among the first batch of National Historical and Cultural Cities crowned by the State Council. Located in the southern wing of the Yangtze River Delta, western tip of the Hangzhou Bay, downstream of the Qiantang River, and the southern terminus of the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal, Hangzhou stands as a vital transport hub in southeast China.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com
http://www.swim4soflo.com

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Jamaica’s Alia Atkinson Misses Shot At Another Medal In Two Events, Her Commonwealth Games Come To And End


By Sharon Robb

April 8, 2018—-Four-time Jamaican Olympian Alia Atkinson had a rough day at the XXI Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia on Sunday.

After settling for a silver medal in the 50-meter breaststroke, she finished eighth in the 50-meter butterfly in 27.35 seconds at Optus Aquatic Centre.

Aussie Cate Campbell was impressive with the win in 25.59. The Aussies swept the top three spots. Holly Barratt was second in 25.67 and Madeline Groves was third in 25.69.

Less than an hour earlier, Atkinson finished seventh in the 100-meter breaststroke, her signature event in 1:09.83 in the semifinals, failing to make the final. South African Tatjana Schoenmaker was top qualifier in 1:06.65.

It was her final two events of the Commonwealth Games where she took home only one silver medal.

Canadian Kylie Masse won the 200-meter backstroke in 2:05.98 ahead of teammate Taylor Ruck in 2:06.42 and Aussie Emily Seebohm in 2:06.82.

Duncan Scott of Scotland won the 100-meter freestyle in 48.02. Chad Le Clos of South Africa and Aussie Kyle Chambers tied for second in 48.15.

England’s Siobhan-Marie O’Connor won the 200-meter individual medley in 2:09.80. Canadian Sarah Darcel was second in 2:11.14 just edging out teammate Erika Seltenreich-Hodgson was third in 2:11.74.

In an exciting 50-meter backstroke final, Aussie Mitch Larkin outsprinted teammate Ben Treffers, 24.68-24.84. Zac Incerti completed the Aussie sweep in 25.06.

Australia remained undefeated in the 4×200-meter freestyle relay final in a Games record of 7:05.97. Relay members were Alexander Graham, Kyle Chalmers, Elijah Winnington and Mack Horton. They are 4-for-4 in relays.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com
http://www.swim4soflo.com

SOFLO’s Atkinson Will Try Again For First Gold On Sunday At XXI Commonwealth Games


By Sharon Robb

April 7, 2018—Alia Atkinson has another shot at a gold medal Sunday at the XXI Commonwealth Games at newly-renovated Optus Aquatic Centre in Gold Coast Australia.

Atkinson, who took silver in the 50-meter breaststroke earlier in the week, qualified seventh for the 50-meter butterfly final in a lifetime best 26.84.

Australia took the top three qualifying spots with Madeline Groves, 25.54; Cate Campbell, 25.56; and Holly Barratt, 25.88.

The South Florida Aquatic Club swimmer and four-time Jamaican Olympian will also compete in Sunday’s 100-meter breaststroke prelims, her third and final event and signature event.

In Day Four finals:

South African Chad Le Clos won the 200-meter butterfly in 1:54.00. He led from start to finish to break the Commonwealth Games record and win by nearly two seconds over Aussie David Morgan in 1:56.36.

Aussie Cate Campbell broke her own Commonwealth Games record in the 50-meter freestyle final in 23.78. It is her first international meet since her post-Olympic hiatus. Aussie Bronte Campbell and Taylor Ruck of Canada tied for the silver medal in 24.26.

England’s Adam Peaty won the 100-meter breaststroke in 58.84, just off his Games record. He did complete a four-year unbeaten run in the event since Glasgow in 2014. Brit teammate James Wilby was second in 59.43 and South African Cameron van der Burgh was third in 59.44.

Canadian Kylie Masse won the 100-meter backstroke in 58.63. Aussie Emily Seebohm was second in 58.66 and Ruck was third in 58.97.

South African Tatjana Schoenmaker won the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:22.02. England’s Molly Renshaw was second in 2:23.28 and Chloe Tutton of Wales was third in 2:23.42.

Through April 15, more than 70 nations will compete. The Commonwealth Games have been held since 1930, open only to athletes from the Commonwealth of Nations, including countries such as Australia, Canada, India and United Kingdom.

While there are only 52 countries in the Commonwealth of Nations, 70 countries compete in the Commonwealth Games.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com
http://www.swim4soflo.com

SOFLO’s Atkinson Takes Silver At XXI Commonwealth Games


By Sharon Robb

April 6, 2018—Gold medal favorite Alia Atkinson of Jamaica had to settle for silver Friday in her first final at the XXI Commonwealth Games at newly-renovated Optus Aquatic Centre in Gold Coast Australia.

The South Florida Aquatic Club swimmer, the fastest qualifier in the 50-meter breaststroke, was second in 30.76 behind gold medalist Sarah Vasey of England in 30.60. Aussie Leiston Pickett took bronze in 30.78.

The four-time Olympian was slower than she was in the semifinal in 30.53, second in the world rankings, which would have won the gold medal. She duplicated her silver medal effort at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

Atkinson will also compete in the 50-meter butterfly and 100-meter breaststroke.

In other finals:

South Africa’s Chad Le Clos won the 50-meter butterfly in a tight race in 23.37. Plantation American Heritage alum Dylan Carter of Trinidad & Tobago took silver in 23.67 and Ryan Coetzee of South Africa bronze in 23.73.

Aussie teammates Kyle Chalmers and Mack Horton finished 1-2 in the 200-meter freestyle in 1:45.56 and 1:45.89 respectively. Duncan Scott of Scotland was third in 1:46.30.

Aussie Clyde Lewis won gold in the 400-meter individual medley in 4:13.12. Scotland’s Mark Szaranek was second in 4:13.72 and Lewis Clareburt won New Zealand’s first medal placing third in 4:14.42.

Aussie Mitch Larkin won the 100-meter backstroke in 53.18. Bradley Woodward was second in 53.95 and Markus Thormeyer third in 54.14.

Aussie swept the women’s 100-meter butterfly with Emma McKeon, 56.78, Madeline Groves, 57.19 and Brianna Throssell, 57.30.

Through April 15, more than 70 nations will compete. The Commonwealth Games have been held since 1930, open only to athletes from the Commonwealth of Nations, including countries such as Australia, Canada, India and United Kingdom.

While there are only 52 countries in the Commonwealth of Nations, 70 countries compete in the Commonwealth Games.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com
http://www.swim4soflo.com

SOFLO’s Atkinson Goes For First Gold On Friday At XXI Commonwealth Games


By Sharon Robb

April 5, 2018—After carrying the Jamaican flag in the Opening Ceremonies, Alia Atkinson will go for her first gold medal Friday at the XXI Commonwealth Games at newly-renovated Optus Aquatic Centre in Gold Coast, Australia.

Atkinson hopes to improve upon or at least repeat her silver medal performance at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

On Thursday, the South Florida Aquatic Club swimmer and four-time Olympian was fastest qualifier in the 50-meter breaststroke in 30.53 seconds. Brit Sarah Vasey was second fastest in 30.75 and Aussie teammates Georgia Bohl and Jessica Hansen were third fastest in 30.92.

Atkinson was Jamaica’s flag bearer in the Games’ Opening Ceremony. “Beyond excited and thrilled,” she said.

Atkinson will also compete in the 50-meter butterfly and 100-meter breaststroke.

Other gold medal final events are men’s 50 butterfly, men’s 200-meter freestyle, men’s 400-meter individual medley, men’s 100-meter backstroke, women’s 100-meter butterfly and men’s 4×100-meter freestyle relay.

In opening day highlight finals, Australia broke the world record in the 4×100-meter freestyle relay in 3:30.05. Relay members were Shayna Jack, Bronte Campbell, Emma McKeon and Cate Campbell. Cate Campbell was coming off a year’s hiatus after a disappointing Rio Olympics.

“To come back from a year off and to be part of something where you are the best in the world is a pretty special moment,” Campbell told reporters.

Canada took silver and England earned bronze in the relay.

Canadian Taylor Ruck, 17, won the 200-meter freestyle in Commonwealth Games and Canadian records of 1:54.81. She was also a member of the silver medalist 4×100 free relay.

Aussie Olympic champion Mack Horton won the 400-meter freestyle in 3:43.76.

Brit Aimee Willmott won the 400-meter individual medley in 4:34.90.

Scottland’s James Wilby won the 200-meter breaststroke in 2:08.05.

In the men’s 50-meter butterfly semifinal, Plantation American Heritage alum Dylan Carter of Trinidad & Tobago was fourth fastest qualifier in 23.90.

Through April 15, more than 70 nations will compete. The Commonwealth Games have been held since 1930, open only to athletes from the Commonwealth of Nations, including countries such as Australia, Canada, India and United Kingdom.

While there are only 52 countries in the Commonwealth of Nations, 70 countries compete in the Commonwealth Games.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com
http://www.swim4soflo.com

Golding, Rodriguez Lead SOFLO On Day One Of FGC Senior Championships


By Sharon Robb

PEMBROKE PINES, March 23, 2018—Defending champion and host South Florida Aquatic Club kicked off opening day of the Florida Gold Coast Senior Championships with a strong showing in its home pool.

SOFLO leads the combined team standings with 996 points followed by Metro Aquatics with 961.5 and East Coast Aquatic Club with 890 in what’s expected to be a tight battle over the final two days. Thirty-one teams are in the field.

SOFLO’s Kathleen Golding and Rafael Rodriguez were multiple winners with all best times.

Rodriguez, 16, was a triple winner in the 200-yard butterfly in 1:50.50, 100-yard individual medley in 53.15 and 500-yard freestyle in 4:35.60. He has 72 points in high point.

Golding, 17, won the 100-yard freestyle in 49.38, 100-yard individual medley in 56.36 and was second in the 500-yard freestyle in 4:49.48, the first time she cracked the 5-minute barrier in the distance event. She has 69 points in high point.

Casey Moya, 17, broke 30 seconds in the 50-yard breaststroke in 29.09, shaving 1.10 seconds off his previous best time.

“The kids swam well and were the best team tonight performance-wise,” said SOFLO head coach Chris Anderson. “It’s going to be a close meet. I didn’t expect us to be leading after the first day.”

Other Top 4 SOFLO finishers:

Lance Lesage, third, 200-yard backstroke, 1:53.65, time drop.

Ricardo Roche, fourth, 200-yard backstroke, 1:52.51, time drop; fourth, 500-yard freestyle, 4:42.00.

Kelley Heron, third, 200-yard backstroke, 2:02.72; fourth, 100-yard individual medley, 59.75.

Jennifer Rodriguez, third, 50-yard breaststroke, 30.68.

The meet continues Saturday with the prelims at 8:30 a.m. and finals at 5 p.m.

FRIDAY RESULTS
COMBINED TEAM TOTALS

1. South Florida Aquatic Club 996, 2. Metro Aquatics 961.5, 3. East Coast Aquatic Club 890, 4. Gulliver 873.5, 5. Pine Crest 429, 6. Miami Swimming 354, 7. TS Aquatics 340, 8. YMCA of South Florida 302, 9. Azura 261, 10. Jupiter Dragons 227.

BOYS TEAM TOTALS

1. Metro Aquatics 674.5, 2. SOFLO 573.5, 3. East Coast 331, 4. Gulliver 239.5, 5. TS Aquatics 221, 6. Miami Swimming 210, 7. Azura 163, 8. Jupiter Dragos 156, 9. Pine Crest 133.5, 10. YMCA of South Florida 127.

BOYS INDIVIDUAL RESULTS

200-yard freestyle relay:
Open, 1. Metro Aquatics 1:25.98, 3. SOFLO A 1:26.68 (Luke Lezotte, Heath Brames, Rafael Rodriguez, Juan Serna), 9. SOFLO B 1:29.80 (Casey Moya, Michael Arias, Lance Lesage, Kevin Porto).

400-yard freestyle relay:
Open, 1. Metro Aquatics 3:07.18, 5. SOFLO A 3:14.15 (Heath Brames, Juan Serna, Rafael Rodriguez, Kevin Porto), 8. SOFLO B 3:20.46 (Michael Arias, Juan Diaz, Lance Lesage, CJ Kopecki).

200-yard backstroke:
15-16, 1. Elvis Kotikovski, PC 1:52.08; SOFLO: 3. Lance Lesage 1:53.65, time drop, 8. Leonardo Mateus 1:59.53, 17. Nicolas Munoz 2:04.22, time drop; Open, 1. Miguel Cancel, Unattached 1:45.52; SOFLO: 4. Ricardo Roche 1:52.51, time drop; 13. Juan Diaz 2:01.33.

100-yard freestyle:
15-16, 1. Reese Branzell, LLL 47.27; SOFLO: 5. Juan Serna 48.21, 9. Michael Arias 49.47, 17. Lance Lesage 50.49; Open, 1. Jorge Depassier, Azura 45.62; SOFLO: 8. Heath Brames 47.73, 10. Kevin Porto 48.26.

200-yard butterfly:
15-16, 1. Rafael Rodriguez, SOFLO 1:50.50, time drop; SOFLO: 7. John Paul Handal 2:02.01, 9. Joseph Lee 2:03.24 13. Leonardo Mateus 2:03.45, 20. Juancamilo Rivero 2:15.28; Open, 1. Miguel Cancel, Unattached 1:47.60; SOFLO: 6. CJ Kopecki 1:55.60.

50-yard breaststroke:
15-16, 1. Juan Pablo Pineda, SOFLO 27.55, time drop; Open, 1. Teo Darias, Gulliver 26.47; SOFLO: 11. Casey Mora 29.09, time drop.

100-yard individual medley:
15-16, 1. Rafael Rodriguez, SOFLO 53.15, time drop; SOFLO: 12. Juan Pablo Pineda 56.91, time drop, 13. John Paul Handal 57.15, time drop, 16. Joseph Lee 57.51, time drop; Open, 1. Steven Aimable, Azura 51.03; SOFLO: 10. Kevin Porto 56.76, 12. Heath Brames 55.30, 13. CJ Kopecki 55.42, time drop, 15. Luke Lezotte 55.95, 17. Juan Diaz 56.42.

500-yard freestyle:
15-16, 1. Rafael Rodriguez, SOFLO 4:35.60, time drop; SOFLO: 6. Leonardo Mateus 4:48.36, 8. Nicolas Rossi 4:51.76, time drop, 11. Lance Lesage 4:52.82, 16. Michael Arias 4:55.45, time drop, 20. Joseph Lee 4:56.95; Open, 1. Carlos Vasquez, TSA 4:32.70; SOFLO: 4. Ricardo Roche 4:42.00, 6. CJ Kopecki 4:43.38, time drop.

GIRLS TEAM TOTALS

1. Gulliver 634, 2. East Coast 559, 3. SOFLO 422.5, 4. Pine Crest 295.5, 5. Metro Aquatics 287, 6. tie, YMCA of South Florida 175, AquaKids Sharks 175, 8. Miami Swimming 144, 9. TS Aquatics 119, 10. Swim Fort Lauderdale 99.

GIRLS INDIVIDUAL RESULTS

200-yard freestyle relay:
Open, 1. East Coast 1:35.54, 2. Gulliver 1:36.99, 3. SOFLO A 1:38.05 (Paige Lane, Katrina Del Vecchio, Kathleen Golding, Jacqueline Lugo), 13. SOFLO B 1:43.15 (Molly Golding, Kelley Heron, Jennifer Rodriguez, Maya Coffey).

400-yard freestyle relay:
Open, 1. East Coast Aquatic Club 3:29.74; 3. SOFLO A 3:34.80 (Paige Lane, Kelley Heron, Kathleen Golding, Jacqueline Lugo), 12. SOFLO B 3:46.40 (Maya Coffey, Kyana Castro, Katrina Del Vecchio, Jennifer Rodriguez).

200-yard backstroke:
15-16, 1. Madison Cummings, ECAC 2:02.78; SOFLO: 15. Michelle Marinheiro 2:24.06; BRST: 16. Shelley Sikes 2:4.73; Open, 1. Carolina Colorado, MVAC 2:00.78; SOFLO: 3. Kelley Heron 2:02.72;

100-yard freestyle:
15-16, 1. Andrea Santander, PC 50.11; SOFLO: 5. Paige Lane 52.71, 14. Jacqueline Lugo 54.63, time drop, 15. Maya Coffey 54.64, time drop, 17. Katrina Del Vecchio 54.99; Open, 1. Kathleen Golding, SOFLO 49.38; SOFLO: 11. Jennifer Rodriguez 55.01, time drop.

200-yard butterfly:
15-16, 1. Madison Cummings, ECAC 2:05.41; SOFLO: 8. Paige Lane 2:12.64, 11. Daniela Curbelo 2:13.96; Open, 1. Mary Smutny, AquaKids Sharks 1:56.93; SOFLO: 13. Molly Golding 2:12.98, time drop.

50-yard breaststroke:
15-16, 1. Chade Nersicio, ECAC 29.49; Open, 1. Mercedes Toledo, Unattached 29.10; SOFLO: 3. Jennifer Rodriguez 30.68, 6. Molly Golding 31.46, 8. Kelley Heron 32.16, 18. Sabrina Osorio 34.50.

100-yard individual medley:
15-16, 1. Chade Nersicio, ECAC 56.69; SOFLO: 11. Katrina Del Vecchio 1:02.01, time drop, 15. Jacqueline Lugo 1:03.49, time drop, 16. Maya Coffey 1:03.93, time drop; Open, 1. Kathleen Golding, SOFLO 56.36, time drop; SOFLO: 4. Kelley Heron 59.75, 6. Jennifer Rodriguez 1:01.26, time drop.

500-yard freestyle:
15-16, 1. Paige MacEachern, ECAC 5:00.03; SOFLO: 2. Paige Lane 5:05.66, time drop; Open, 1. Mary Smutny, AKS 4:45.97; SOFLO: 2. Kathleen Golding 4:49.48.

IF YOU GO

What: Florida Gold Coast Senior Championships.

When: Saturday-Sunday, prelims 8:30 a.m., finals 5 p.m. Saturday, 4 p.m. Sunday.

Estimated Timelines: Saturday, prelims 8:30-11:35 a.m., finals 5-7:20 p.m.; Sunday, prelims 8:30 a.m.-12:05 p.m., finals 4-7:04 p.m.

Where: Academic Village Swimming Pool, 17191 Sheridan St., Pembroke Pines.

Of note: Admission is $5 per session. Heat sheets are free and will be available online at soflomeets.info/seniorchamps and on Meet Mobile. Timed finals for the 500-yard freestyle are Friday and 400-yard individual medley on Saturday. For information call the swim office, 954-538-3721.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com
http://www.swim4soflo.com

SOFLO Captures Ninth Florida Gold Coast Short Course 14&Under Junior Olympics Title


By Sharon Robb

CORAL SPRINGS, March 18, 2018—South Florida Aquatic Club found a way to win—again.

The early leaders of the Florida Gold Coast 14&Under Short Course Junior Olympics clinched the combined team title on the third and final day at the Michael Lohberg Pool of Champions at Coral Springs Aquatic Complex.

With less swimmers and superstars than years’ past, SOFLO won with 846 points finishing ahead of Flood Aquatics with 717.50 and Pine Crest Swimming with 708.50.

It was a record eighth consecutive and ninth overall in the club’s 18-year history.

“It’s definitely getting harder each year to win,” said SOFLO head coach Chris Anderson. “With the group that we have I can’t stress enough how our coaches maximized their strengths. Our experienced coaches took the strength of club and exploited the rest of the Gold Coast with it.”

Every point mattered for SOFLO. In past years, depth was always the key but this year’s meet was a little different.

“Our strengths was really taking advantage of athletes we have in the water,” Anderson said. “We found a way to basically win in four different ways–depth, the middle distance quality, depth of relays and specifying different strokes.

“Our girls were swimming out of their minds in individual races. They may not have been able to swim six races but they could do three very strong ones and that’s what we had to do.

“We’re not as strong as we used to be, but we had a good handle on it. We looked at where they were at in September, adjusted in December, coached them better and they were ready to go.

“We are going to continue to find ways to win the big championships,” Anderson said. “It is a culture of winning. The coaches feel it and know it as well.”

Last weekend SOFLO won its first Southern Zone South Sectional Championships with depth and fed off that momentum at JOs. Thirty-two of the sectional swimmers all scored and competed on multiple JO teams.

“Winning sectionals was something we had never done in the past and we did it with depth,” Anderson said.

“This week if you looked at us on paper there was no way we would be in the top two,” Anderson said. “We were suppose to get third place. After the first day of the meet we found a way to win. Our younger swimmers, the 10-and-unders, did a great job. It worked out well.”

SOFLO swimmers that competed in their final JO short course appearance before aging up all played a vital role in the team victory. They were Sarah Acevedo, Brennan Binder, Juan Colmenares, Kayla Cunningham, Mark Andre De Gracia, Molly Golding, Yannai Michael, Jena Legaspi, Anthony Robaina, Javier Roman, Mallory Schleicher and Christian Vasquez.

SOFLO’s 11-12 boys scored 254 points; 13-14 girls 178 points; 13-14 boys 138 points; 11-12 girls scored 114; 10-and-under girls scored 83; and 10-and-under boys score 79. The majority of SOFLO swimmers had at least one best time.

Among SOFLO’s top three finishers were:

Giada Porven, second, 200-yard individual medley, 2:35.70, time drop.

Jonathan Lozano, second, 200-yard individual medley, 2:31.52, time drop.

Mallory Schleicher, third, 1,650-yard freestyle, 17:33.42.

Valerie Vank, third, 50-yard breaststroke, 31.77.

Alejandro Mateus, third, 200-yard individual medley, 2:12.92, time drop; third, 1,650-yard freestyle, 18:26.33, time drop.

Lucas Porven, third, 200-yard butterfly, 2:16.91, time drop.

SOFLO’s A 200-yard freestyle relay was third in 1:45.30 with Diego Nazario-Vazquez, Christian Tijero, Aldo Zepeda and Alejandro Mateus.

“The most satisfying win is always the first,” Anderson said. “As far as upping the quality and reputation of being a very competitive team, this is definitely one of the most satisfying ones. Coaching up the kids and watching the kids and coaches perform at the championship level was very satisfying.”

More than 600 swimmers and 36 teams competed. The top six finishers in each JO event qualify for the Florida Gold Coast All-Star team.

Among FGC teams were Pine Crest, Azura, East Coast, Metro Aquatics, North Palm Beach, Miami Swimming, Wahoos of Wellington, Gulliver and AquaKids Sharks.

SUNDAY RESULTS
COMBINED TEAM RESULTS

1. South Florida Aquatic Club 846, 2. Flood Aquatics 717.50, 3. Pine Crest Swimming 708.50, 4. St. Andrew’s 650.50, 5. Jupiter 544, 6. East Coast Aquatic 426, 7. Swim Fort Lauderdale 388, 8. Metro Aquatics 339, 9. Gulliver 334, 10. Hialeah Storm 278.

HIGH POINT AWARDS
GIRLS

10-and-under, 1. Tania Mantilla, YMCA of South Florida 69; SOFLO: 10. tie, Giada Porven 26 and Mariana Pinto, 26, 31. Sarah Vasquez 3.

11-12, 1. Aspen Gersper, SAS 77; SOFLO: 12. Valerie Vank 31, 20. Alexis Christensen 14, 28. Luna Delgado 6, 35. Kerry Cunningham 5.

13-14, 1. Anna Auld, East Coast Aquatic 70; SOFLO: 10. Molly Golding 34, 11. Kayla Cunningham 33, 13. Mallory Schleicher 29.50, 30. Victoria Torres 7.50, 32. Sarah Acevedo 5.

BOYS

10-and-under, 1. George Gonzalez, Metro Aquatics 77; SOFLO: 2. Jonathan Lozano, 61.

11-12, 1. Steven Curtis, Jupiter Dragons 75; SOFLO: 7. Alejandro Mateus 55, 12. Christian Tijero 32, 13. Alessandro Pereira 31, 14. Lucas Porven 22, 19. Aldo Zepeda 16, 29. Javier Colmenares 7, 41. Diego Nazario-Vazquez 1.

13-14, 1. Joshua Zuchowski, FAST 77; SOFLO: 13. Javier Roman, 30, 16. Juan Colmenares 23, 25. Yannai Michael 11, 29. Brennan Binder 7, 33. Moises Rodriguez 5, 36. Enrique Rodriguez 4

GIRLS

200-yard individual medley:
10-and-under, 1. Giola Balzano, EA 2:33.04; SOFLO: 2. Giada Porven 2:35.70, time drop, 8. Sarah Vasquez 2:43.54, time drop, 11. Fiorella DiSalvo 2:45.56; 11-12, 1. Erika Pelaez, EA 2:10.84; 13-14, 1. Emily Trieschmann,SAS 2:05.86; SOFLO: 9. Molly Golding 2:11.96, time drop.

50-yard backstroke
10-and-under, 1. Mia Guerrero, Azura 32.59; SOFLO: 9. Mariana Pinto 34.40, time drop, 16. Abigail-Marie Natino 35.61, time drop; 11-12, 1. Aspen Gersper, SAS 26.44; 13-14, 1. Megan Murphy, ECAC 25.57; SOFLO: 8. Kayla Cunningham 28.04, time drop.

50-yard breaststroke:
10-and-under, 1. Elyse Wood, GRSC 37.27; SOFLO: 11. Mariana Pinto 40.14, time drop; 11-12, 1. Sara Lin, PC 31.20; SOFLO: 3. Valerie Vank 31.77; 13-14, 1. Heidi Smithwick, JDST 29.25; SOFLO: 4. Victoria Torres 30.79, time drop, 8. Molly Golding 31.03, time drop.

200-yard butterfly:
11-12, 1. Casey Perez, BMHG 2:15.13; SOFLO: 5. Luna Delgado 2:24.18, time drop; 13-14, 1. Anelis Roque, MAC 2:05.81; SOFLO: 7. Sarah Acevedo 2:10.99, time drop, 8. Kayla Cunningham 2:11.92.

100-yard freestyle:
10-and-under, 1. Tania Mantilla, YSF 1:00.42; SOFLO: 5. Mariana Pinto 1:04.12, time drop, 14. Giada Porven 1:06.38, time drop, , 17. Fiorella Di Salvo 1:07.05; 11-12, 1. Aspen Gersper, SAS 52.40; 13-14, 1. Megan Murphy, ECAC 51.61.

200-yard freestyle relay:
11-12, 1. St. Andrew’s 1:40.90, 5. SOFLO A 1:50.09 (Hartley Pitters-Hinds, Anastasia Lutz, Alexis Christensen, Valerie Vank), 11. SOFLO B 1:53.38 (Kaitlyn Barrios, Luna Delgado, Natalia Sibug, Reagan Lowe).

400-yard freestyle relay:
13-14, 1. East Coast 3:35.57, 5. SOFLO A 3:44.50 (Kayla Cunningham, Mallory Schleicher, Sarah Acevedo, Molly Golding), 21. SOFLO B 3:56.17 (Emma Twombly, Sabrina Osorio, Jena Legaspi, Victoria Torres).

1,650-yard freestyle:
11-12, 1. Mariana Cote, Azura 18:22.01; 13-14, 1. Anna Auld, ECAC 16:34.66; SOFLO: 3. Mallory Schleicher 17:33.42, 13. Sarah Acevedo 18:36.69.

BOYS

200-yard individual medley:
10-and-under, 1. George Gonzalez, MAC 2:24.39; SOFLO: 2. Jonathan Lozano 2:31.52, time drop, 14. Derek Hau 2:54.67; 11-12, 1. Steven Curtis, JDST 2:11.73; SOFLO: 3. Alejandro Mateus 2:12.92, time drop, 5. Christian Tijero 2:15.40, time drop, 8. Lucas Porven 2:20.75, time drop, 9. Javier Colmenares 2:22.04, time drop; 13-14, 1. Joshua Zuchowski, FAST 1:53.92; SOFLO: 8. Juan Colmenares 2:03.09, time drop, 9. Javier Roman 2:03.30, time drop, 10. Yannai Michael 2:05.73, time drop.

50-yard backstroke:
10-and-under, 1. Anthony Pineiro, MAC 33.42; SOFLO: 4. Jonathan Lozano 34.10, time drop; 11-12, 1. Noah Smith, FAST 26.80; SOFLO: 6. Aldo Zepeda 30.19, time drop; 13-14, 1. Joshua Zuchowski, FAST 23.61.

50-yard breaststroke:
10-and-under, 1. George Gonzalez, MAC 33.14; SOFLO: 15. Derek Hau 41.67; 11-12, 1. Steven Curtis, JDST 30.38; 13-14, 1. Joshua Hanks, PC 26.84; SOFLO: 6. Javier Roman 28.54, time drop.

200-yard butterfly:
11-12, 1. Kaii Winkler, Unattached 2:09.86; SOFLO: 3. Lucas Porven 2:16.91, time drop, 4. Alessandro Pereira 2:18.32, time drop; 13-14, 1. Joshua Zuchowski, FAST 1:53.82; SOFLO: 5. Brennan Binder 2:03.91, time drop, 8. Juan Colmenares 2:05.94, time drop.

100-yard freestyle:
10-and-under, 1. Antoine Sharp, LLL 1:02.52; SOFLO: 4. Jonathan Lozano 1:03.48, time drop; 11-12, 1. Steven Curtis, JDST 52.51; SOFLO: 10. Diego Nazario-Vazquez 58.08; 13-14, 1. Varis Monroe, NPB 47.12.

200-yard freestyle relay:
11-12, 1. Flood Aquatics 1:43.18, 3. SOFLO A 1:45.30 (Diego Nazario-Vazquez, Christian Tijero, Aldo Zepeda, Alejandro Mateus), 10. SOFLO B 1:51.99 (Alessandro Pereira, Javier Colmenares, Kevin Moya, Lucas Porven).

400-yard freestyle relay:
13-14, 1. Hialeah 3:21.44, 4. SOFLO A 3:27.44, 11. SOFLO B 3:38.02.

1,650-yard freestyle:
11-12, 1. John Trieu, FAST 18:06.03; SOFLO: 3. Alejandro Mateus, 18:26.33, time drop; 13-14, 1. Dominic Bono, AKS 16:41.54.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com
http://www.swim4soflo.com