High School Swimmers Head To FHSAA State 3A, 4A And Region 1A, 2A Meets This Weekend; SOFLO’s Kathleen Golding Goes For State 4A Four-Peat

By Sharon Robb

November 8, 2017—It’s show time for high school swimmers whose season kicks into high gear at the FHSAA State 3A and 4A Swimming and Diving Championships in Stuart and Region 1A and 4-2A Meets in Fort Lauderdale and Fort Myers.

The FHSAA State Swimming and Diving Championships begin Friday at Sailfish Splash Waterpark and Aquatics Center with the State 3A competition featuring three talented Pembroke Pines Charter swimmers including district and region champion Victoria Torres, a freshman.

Torres, one of the youngest swimmers in the region meet, won the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:06.71 and is seeded ninth at state.

Pembroke Pines Charter freshman Jena Legaspi, also of SOFLO, was second in the 100-yard backstroke in 1:02.01. She is seeded 19th at state.

Pembroke Pines Charter junior Rafael Rodriguez was second in the 200-yard individual medley in 1:58.31 and third in the 500-yard freestyle in 4:44.63. He is seeded seventh in the 200 IM and 16th in the 500 freestyle.

The State 4A competition, featuring the bulk of Broward County teams including Cypress Bay, Cooper City and St. Thomas Aquinas, is Saturday.

Cooper City senior Kathleen Golding will close out an impressive high school career before heading to University of Florida for the next chapter of her swimming career.

Golding will be going for a four-peat in the 200-yard individual medley. She won as a freshman in 2:00.40, an All-American automatic time; as a sophomore in 2:00.34, another All-American automatic time; and as a junior in 1:59.72, also an All-American automatic time.

Golding is expected to go head-to-head with Sarasota Riverview’s Emma Weyant who finished runner-up last year in 2:02.44 and is seeded first in 2:02.67. Golding will also compete in the 100-yard freestyle. She was second last year in 49.79 to Flagler Palm Coast freshman Micayla Cronk in 49.58. Both were All-American automatic times. Golding is seeded second in the 200 IM and fifth in the 100 freestyle. Golding will also swim on the 200-yard medley and 400-yard freestyle relays.

The 4A meet has several SOFLO swimmers competing including St. Thomas Aquinas sophomore Lance Lesage in the 100-yard freestyle and 100-yard backstroke. Lesage is seeded 22nd in the 100 freestyle and ninth in the 100 backstroke.

Cooper City freshman Mallory Schleicher will make her state meet debut in the 200- and 500-yard freestyle events. She is seeded 16th in the 500 freestyle in 5:03.05 and 20th in the 200 freestyle. She won region titles in the 200 freestyle in 1:54.14 and 500 freestyle.

Cypress Bay sophomore Paige Lane also qualified in the 200-yard freestyle, seeded 24th at the state meet in 1:55.94 and also the 100-yard freestyle, seeded 24th in 53.60. Lane was runner-up in the 100- and 200-yard freestyles. Lane anchored Cypress Bay’s runner-up 400-yard freestyle relay.

Molly Golding of Cooper City qualified in the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:07.23 and is seeded 11th and 200 IM and is seeded 13th in the 100 breaststroke. She was second in the 100 breaststroke and third in the 200 IM in 2:09.21.

Jennifer Rodriguez of Hialeah Gardens is seeded fourth in the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:04.58. She also qualified in the 200 IM and is seeded 22nd in 2:10.44. She won the 100 breaststroke and was fourth in the 200 IM at regions.

Gaby Banks of Cypress Bay is seeded 11th in the 50-yard freestyle in 24.23. Cooper City’s Solana Capalbo is seeded 17th in the sprint event in 24.58. Banks won the 50-yard freestyle at regions. Capalbo was second in the 50 freestyle and third in the 100 freestyle in 53.62.

Sarah Acevedo is Everglades’ lone qualifier. Acevedo will also make her state meet debut in the 500-yard freestyle, seeded 24th in 5:11.43. She was second at regions.

Cypress Bay sophomore Philopatier Ibrahim will make his state debut after qualifying in the 200-yard freestyle, seeded 18th in 1:45.02 and 500-yard freestyle, seeded 23rd in 4:44.83. He was fourth in the 500 freestyle. He was also a member of the runner-up 200-yard freestyle relay team.

Robert Wilson of Cooper City is seeded 20th in the 100-yard freestyle in 48.48 and 22nd in the 50-yard freestyle in 22.25. Wilson won the region title in the 50 in 22.25 and was third in the 100 freestyle n 48.48.

Javier Roman of Cooper City is seeded 22nd in the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:00.69.

Swimming prelims at 9 a.m. and finals at 5:30 p.m. Boys diving begins 9 a.m. and girls diving at 1:30 p.m. There is a live webcast at NFHS Network for a subscription fee.

The Region 1A and 2A qualifying meets are also being held this week for next weekend’s state competition, the ultimate meet in high school swimming. The top 24 swimmers from the combined regions around the state qualified.

NSU University School will host the Region 4-1A Swimming and Diving Championship on Friday at NSU Aquatic Complex. The meet features defending champion Pine Crest and St. Andrew’s. The diving and swimming competition begins 10 a.m.

The Region 4-2A, hosted by Cape Coral and featuring American Heritage Plantation’s Nicolas Rossi and Archbishop McCarthy’s Juan Mora, is Saturday at Florida Gulf Coast University Aquatic Center. The swimming timed finals are 10:30 a.m. and diving at 11 a.m.

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com

Cooper City’s Kathleen Golding Three-Peats, Wins State Title At FHSAA State 4A Meet

By Sharon Robb

STUART, November 10, 2017—-In front of a packed house at Sailfish Splashpark Aquatic Athletics Center on an electrifying Friday night, Kathleen Golding won another state title at the FHSAA State 4A Swimming and Diving Championships.

The Cooper City junior defended her title in the 200-yard individual medley in an automatic All-American time of 1:59.72, the only swimmer to crack 2 minutes in the field. It was her third consecutive state title in the challenging event.

“I had confidence since I had won it twice before,” Golding said. “I’m glad I did well and had a better time that was under two minutes.”

Golding was the only girl or boy swimmer from Broward County to capture a state title. She was also second in the 100-yard freestyle in a close race with Micayla Cronk of Flagler Palm Coast, 49.58-49.79. It was the first time she swam the 100 freestyle at state. In the past two state meets, her second event was the 100 butterfly.

Golding was a member of the Cowboys’ seventh place 200-yard medley relay that finished in 1:49.11 with teammates Solana Capalbo, Molly Golding and Barbara Bernal. She also anchored the tenth place 200-yard freestyle relay.

Cooper City was the top Broward girls team finisher placing eighth with 93 points. The next Broward girls finisher was Cypress Bay, 19th with 32 points. Cypress Bay was the top boys team, placing 11th with 79 points.

Jennifer Rodriguez of Hialeah Gardens had a Top 10 finish placing ninth in the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:06.57.

Cypress Bay freshman Paige Lane was 11th in the 200-yard freestyle in 1:53.98 and 12th in the 100-yard freestyle in 52.97. Another freshman, Molly Golding of Cooper City was tenth in the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:06.84.

Cooper City’s Heath Brames, making his first state meet appearance, was tenth in the 100-yard freestyle in 47.38. Brames also led off the Cowboys’ 200-yard freestyle relay that was ninth in 1:29.59 with teammates Ivan Capalbo, Mark Zhang and Robert Wilson.

Juan Diaz of Cypress Bay was 12th in the 100-yard backstroke in 53.56.

Park Vista senior Kyle DiMatteo ended his high school career with two state titles in the 50-yard freestyle in 20.42 and 100-yard freestyle in 44.45. The high school All-American is headed to Florida State next fall.

Jupiter’s Will Lefebre won the 1-meter diving title with 505.75 points.

Mandarin senior Keegan Fluharty, seeded second, won the girls diving title with 470.30. She is the first northeast Florida diver to win a state girls title since 2013 after placing sixth, sixth and fifth the past three seasons.

Gainesville Buchholz won the girls team title with 360.5 points, ahead of Tampa Plant with 273. Sarasota Riverview won the boys title with 278.5 points. Laker Brantley was second with 198.

The FHSAA state championships conclude on Saturday with the Class 3A finals with Pembroke Pines Charter and Doral Academy swimmers vying for state titles.


1. Buchholz 360.5, 2. Tampa Plant 273, 3. Riverview 196, 4. Oviedo 161, 5. Palm Harbor 101, 6. Boca Raton 98, 7. Seminole 97, 8. Cooper City 93, 9. Lake Brantley 89, 10. Sarasota 78, 11. Forest Hill 69, 12. Mandarin 68, 13. Winter Park 65, 14. George Steinbrenner 63, 15. tie, Durant, Lakewood 44, 17. West Orange 43, 18. Dr. Philips 39, 19. Cypress Bay 32, 20. Strawberry 30, 21. Flagler Palm Coast 29, 22. Freedom 28.5, 23. Newsome 26, 24. tie, Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter 24, 26. Countryside 21, 27. Hialeah Gardens 19, 28. Wellington 16, 29. Olympia Winter Springs 15, 31. tie, Lake Nona, St. Petersburg 12, 33. Douglas 7, 34. Timber Creek 5, 35. tie, Bloomingdale, Hagerty, Western, Fleming Island, 4, 39. tie, Spanish River, Apopka, Vero Beach, Gateway 3.


200-yard medley relay: 1. Buchholz 1:42.34, 2. Tampa Plant 1:45.89, 3. Oviedo 1:47.78, 7. Cooper City 1:49.11 (Solana Capalbo, Molly Golding, Kathleen Golding, Barbara Bernal), 14. Hialeah Gardens 1:51.62 (Claudia Acosta, Jennifer Rodriguez, Daniela Curbelo, Jenneily Montes), 15. Cypress Bay 1:52.21 (Ellie Koch, Isabella Nigro, Paige Lane, Gaby Banks).

200-yard freestyle: 1. Isabel Ivey, BUCH 1:44.68, 2. Morgan Tankersley, TP 1:46.75, 3. Kensey McMahon, MAND 1:50.30, 11. Paige Lane, CB 1:53.98.

200-yard individual medley: 1. Kathleen Golding, CC 1:59.72, 2. Emma Weyant, RIVS 2:02.44, 3. Kirschtine Balbuena, BUCH 2:02.64, 18. Molly Golding, CC 2:11.74.

50-yard freestyle: 1. Talia Bates, BUCH 22.67, 2. Lexie Mulvihill, GEOS 23.16, 3. Abigail Gibbons, OVDO 23.24, 16. Solana Capalbo, CC 24.67.

1-meter diving: 1. Keegan Fluharty, MAND 470.30, 2. Kaleigh Dundov, BR 443.65, 3. Julia Wortman, WELL 441.75.

100-yard butterfly: 1. Talia Bates, BUCH 53.28, 2. Abigail Gibbons, OVDO 53.60, 3. Caroline Cooper, WP 53.99.

100-yard freestyle: 1. Micayla Cronk, FLPC 49.58, 2. Kathleen Golding, CC 49.79, 3. Kirschtine Balbuena, BUCH 50.82, 12. Paige Lane, CB 52.97, 16. Solana Capalbo, CC 54.12.

500-yard freestyle: 1. Morgan Tankersley, TP 4:44.75, 2. Emma Weyant, RIVS 4:45.11, 3. Kensey McMahon, MAND 4:45.85, 24. Sarah Acevedo 5:20.49.

200-yard freestyle relay: 1. Buchholz, 1:31.66, 2. Tampa Plant 1:34.35, 3. Seminole 1:37.03, 10. Cooper City 1:39.87 (Solana Capalbo, Barbara Bernal, Molly Golding, Kathleen Golding).

100-yard backstroke: 1. Caitlin Brooks, BUCH 52.65, 2. Celi Guzman, STRA 54.90, 3. Megan Murphy, FOHL 56.37, 23. Kayla Cunningham, EVER 1:00.26.

100-yard breaststroke: 1. Isabel Ivey, BUCH 1:00.99, 2. Leah Gentry-Tuney, FROR 1:04.77, 3. Paige MacEachern, BR 1:05.10, 5. Victoria Miyamoto, BR 1:05.62, 9. Jennifer Rodriguez, HG 1:06.57, 10. Molly Golding, CC 1:06.84.

400-yard freestyle relay: 1. Buchholz 3:20.95, 2. Tampa Plant 3:24.16, 3. Riverview 3:30.87, 12. Cypress Bay 3:39.05 (Paige Lane, Ulrike Tovilla, Jacque Lugo, Gaby Banks).


1. Sarasota Riverview 278.5, 2. Lake Brantley 198, 3. Fleming Island 162, 4. Buchholz 150, 5. Seminole 139, 6. Olympia 126, 7. Oviedo 109, 8. Countryside 105, 9. Jupiter 93, 10. Boca Raton 83, 11. Cypress Bay 79, 12. St. Petersburg 68, 13. St. Thomas Aquinas 67, 14. Tampa Plant 53, 15. Palm Harbor 52, 16. Douglas 43, 17. Park Vista 41, 18. Strawberry 39.5, 19. Columbus 37, 20. Cooper City 31, 21. Sarasota 29, 22. George Steinbrenner 26, 23. Apopka 25, 24. tie, Winter Park, Dr. Phillips 24, 26. East Ridge 23, 27. West Port Ocala 21, 28. Lakewood 20, 29. DeLand 17, 30. Treasure Coast 16, 31. tie, Atlantic, Miami, 15, 33. Lake Worth 13, 34. Vero Beach 12, 35. Mandarin 11, 36. Spanish River 10, 37. tie, Braddock, West Broward 9, 39. tie, Boone, Lyman 7, 41. tie, Newsome, Miami Beach, Palmetto, George Jenkins, Fletcher 4, 4. tie, Spruce Creek, Santaluces, Lake Howell, 3, 49. Everglades, 2, 50. Southwest Miami 1.


200-yard medley relay: 1. Lake Brantley 1:33.72, 2. Buchholz 1:33.99, 3. Sarasota Riverview 1:34.44.

200-yard freestyle: 1. Julian Hill, BUCH 1:37.68, 2. Brendan Firlie, RIVS 1:38.57, 3. Nick Hackett, FLEM 1:39.61, 17. Heath Brames, CC 1:43.59, 20. Juan Diaz, CB 1:45.66.

200-yard individual medley: 1. Robert Finke, COUN 1:47.41, 2. Gabe Parnell, LB 1:47.50, 3. Brett Riley, RIVS 1:50.97, 15. Leonardo Mateus, EVER 2:00.99.

50-yard freestyle: 1. Kyle DiMatteo, PV 20.42, 2. Jack Neeley, FLEM 21.10, 3. Luke Carey, OLYM 21.31, 9. Juan Serna, WB 21.54.

1-meter diving: 1. Will Lefebvre, JUP 505.75, 2. Emanuel Vazquez, DRPH 498.50, 3. Tyler Coffey, JUP 459.15.

100-yard butterfly: 1. Mason Wilby, BUCH 48.12, 2. Nick Hackett, FLEM 48.89, 3. Carlos Vasquez, STA 49.71.

100-yard freestyle: 1. Kyle DiMatteo, PV 44.45, 2. JJ Corrigan, RIVS 46.11, 3. Wesley Kephart, SMSA 46.25, 10. Heath Brames, CC 47.38, 19. Juan Serna, WB 48.08.

500-yard freestyle: 1. Robert Finke, COUN 4:18.74, 2. Brendan Firlie, RIVS 4:25.59, 3. Julian Hill, BUCH 4:28.31, 22. Leonardo Mateus, EVER 4:50.63.

200-yard freestyle relay: 1. Fleming 1:24.82, 2. Seminole 1:25.45, 3. Riverview 1:26.19, 7. Cypress Bay 1:28.29 (Leo Manrique, Juan Diaz, Diego Homes, Diego Machado), 9. Cooper City 1:29.59 (Heath Brames, Ivan Capalbo, Mark Zhang, Robert Wilson).

100-yard backstroke: 1. Joey Licht, COUN 49.56, 2. Mason Wilby, BUCH 49.58, 3. Brett Riley, RIVS 50.60, 12. Juan Diaz, CB 53.56.

100-yard breaststroke: 1. Gabe Parnell, LB 56.07, 2. Hector Rodriguez, WP 56.88, 3. Daniel Varon, TRCO 57.01.

400-yard freestyle relay: 1. Riverview 3:05.23, 2. Lake Brantley 3:07.11, 3. Fleming Island 3:07.28, 7. Cypress Bay (Diego Machado, Luis Bucaro, Diego Homes, Juan Diaz), 14. Cooper City 3:16.25 (Ivan Capalbo, Nicolas Christakis, Heath Brames, Robert Wilson).

Sharon Robb can be reached at sha11cats@aol.com