South Florida Aquatic Club Enjoys Another Great Year, Future Looks Bright

South Florida Aquatic Club Enjoys Another Great Year, Future Looks Bright

By Sharon Robb

December 31, 2013

After an outstanding year in 2012, South Florida Aquatic Club raised the bar even higher in 2013.

From the complete team effort SOFLO got at Winter Championships to three-time Olympian Alia Atkinson taking another huge step in the international spotlight, SOFLO earned well-deserved respect.

Buoyed by depth, talent and good coaching, SOFLO swimmers broke records, won races and dropped time throughout the short course and long course seasons.

As we ring in the New Year on Wednesday, let’s reflect on some of the highlights.

SOFLO’s top ten for 2013 were:

1.SOFLO sweeps the combined, girls and boys team titles at the 23rd annual Florida Gold Coast Speedo Winter Championships for the first time in the club’s history.

2.SOFLO is named Nike Swim Team of the Month in December.

3.SOFLO coach Chris Anderson is named Nike Swim Coach of the Month in December.

4.SOFLO’s three-time Jamaican Olympian Alia Atkinson has breakthrough international season on the FINA World Cup circuit and cashes in on her biggest payday ($136,000) winning gold, silver and bronze medals and breaking her own national records.

5.SOFLO makes history by winning Senior Championships and Junior Olympics in the same season.

6.Longtime SOFLO swimmer Marc Rojas makes first senior national cut and signs with the Florida State Seminoles.

7.SOFLO’s Tiffany Oliver wins first ACC title, makes Florida State history with a school record in the 50-yard freestyle (22.17) and two gold medals and goes on to compete at NCAA Championships.

8.SOFLO’s Julien Pinon heads overseas to compete in several international meets and training camps for France to pick up valuable international experience for the future. The American Heritage sophomore then returned in the fall to help his high school team win its first boys’ state team title.

9.SOFLO’s Melissa Marinheiro pulls off a hat trick and a half, competing at the state high school meet, junior nationals, Winter Championships and senior nationals in six weeks.

10.SOFLO defends its title at the FLA International Invitational for its first major long course season win.

Now entering its 14th year, the first ten as Comets Swim Team and fourth year as SOFLO, swimmers, coaches, Booster Club, parents and volunteers pat yourself on the back for a job well-done.

The year 2013 was an outstanding year and 2014 will shine even brighter.

Happy New Year!!!

Sharon Robb can be reached at

BROWARD COUNTY HONOR ROLL, Week Three High School News

BROWARD COUNTY HONOR ROLL, Week Three High School News

September 24, 2012


200-yard Medley Relay: 1. Pine Crest 1:50.80 (Miriyam Ghali, Lindsey Swartz, Tyla Martin, Kaelah Chaney), 2. University School 1:54.22, 3. Douglas 1:55.44, 4. Cardinal Gibbons 1:56.44 (Jenny Zislin, Regan Byrne, Shanese Langsett, Elizabeth Ryder), 5. American Heritage 1:56.93 (Lindsay Hay, Audrey Mason, Claudia Reyes, Jessica Randolph), 6. St. Thomas Aquinas 1:57.14 (Marie Borrelli, Chloe Gerena, Natalya Wozab, Sofia Pozsonyiova), 7. Nova 1:58.00 (Sam Sanchez, Daniela Veloza, Amanda Tipton, Ali Moser), 8. Westminster Academy 2:00.12, 9. West Broward 2:01.16, 10. South Plantation 2:02.19, 11. Deerfield Beach 2:04.41,12. Coral Glades 2:06.68, 13. Pompano Beach 2:06.50,14. Fort Lauderdale 2:07 (Chloe Adams, Tara Lawson-Curley, Hayley Hill, Shannon McCulloch),15. Archbishop McCarthy 2:11 (Cassidy Shorky, M. Dondt, Kristen Armstrong, Julie Plasencia).

200-yard Freestyle: 1. Casey Francis, Pine Crest 1:54.95, 2. Brittany Hammond, Pine Crest 1:55.19, 3. Daniela Veloza, Nova 1:56.71, 4. Tyla Martin, Pine Crest 1:57.54, 5. Daniella Vandenberg, Sagemont 1:58.40, 6. Caroline Nava, Westminster Academy 1:59.27, 7. Nilza Costa, Sagemont 1:59.60, 8. Sabrina Gornisiewicz, Pine Crest 2:00.26, 9. Emily Kopas, University School 2:00.91, 10. Melissa Marinheiro, West Broward 2:01.75, 11. Krissa Robinson, University School 2:01.97, 12. Claudia Reyes, American Heritage 2:02.07, 13. Hannah Veale, Pine Crest 2:02.49, 14. Zoe Balthazar, South Plantation 2:02.59, 15. Monica Pradel, Pine Crest 2:05.08, 16. Emma Lincoln, Cypress Bay 2:05.31, 17. Jamie Flores, Pine Crest 2:05.39, 18. Amanda Tipton, Nova 2:05.54, 19. Steph Campo, Coral Springs Charter 2:05.57, 20. Meagan Abad, South Plantation 2:05.75.

200-yard Individual Medley: 1. Casey Francis, Pine Crest 2:08.08, 2. Tyla Martin, Pine Crest 2:10.45, 3. Emily Kopas, University School 2:12.08, 4. Mia Fiorenzi, St. Thomas Aquinas 2:12.19, 5. Allison Kopas, University School 2:13.86, 6. Rose Smiddy, South Florida Heat 2:15.15, 7. Lindsey Swartz, Pine Crest 2:16.11, 8. Alexa Rivera, Westminster Academy 2:16.35, 9. Daniela Veloza, Nova 2:16.72,10. Lydia Musleh, Coral Glades 2:17.47, 11. Westbrook, Northeast 2:17.53, 12. Lindsay Hay, American Heritage 2:17.97, 13. Amanda Tipton, Nova 2:18.90, 14. Krissa Robinson, University School 2:18.96, 15. Julia Chui, Pine Crest 2:19.25, 16. Chloe Gerena, St. Thomas Aquinas 2:20.74, 17. Mikaela Aponte, Archbishop McCarthy 2:21; 18. Marie Borrelli, St. Thomas Aquinas 2:22.89, 19. Anabella Lyn, University School 2:23.14, 20. Regan Byrne, Cardinal Gibbons 2:23.19.

50-yard Freestyle: 1. Rodriguez, West Broward 25.00, 2. Jessica Randolph, American Heritage 25.02, 3. Zoie Balthazar, South Plantation 25.08, 4. Kaelah Chaney, Pine Crest 25.21, 5. Hannah Veale, Pine Crest 25.35, 6. Elizabeth Ryder, Cardinal Gibbons 25.48, 7. Sophia Olivia, St. Thomas Aquinas 25.51, 8. Carolina Vargas, St. Thomas Aquinas 25.67, 9. McReed, Northeast 25.69, 10. Ali Moser, Nova 26.05, 11. Camila, Western 26.25, 12. Alex Pacitti, American Heritage 26.32, 13. Elizabeth Ryder, Cardinal Gibbons 26.44, 14. Lindsey Swartz, Pine Crest 26.57, 15. Kaitlin Armstrong, Archbishop McCarthy 26.62, 16. Evy Sands, University School 26.72, 17. Caroline Israels, Westminster Academy 26.73, 18. Amanda Tipton, Nova 26.81, 19. Jillian Contich, South Florida Heat 26.87, 20. Brooke Bernstein, Pine Crest 26.89.

1-meter Springboard Diving: 1. Gabriella Comunale, St. Thomas Aquinas 238.80, 2. Huchler, Cypress Bay 197.70, 3. Insel, South Plantation 194.7, 4. Nerissa Scott, St. Thomas Aquinas 192.50, 5. Jade Degouveia, Fort Lauderdale 188.20, 6. Emily Ramos, Douglas 187.50, 7. Caroline Franco, Cardinal Gibbons 175.25, 8. Nicole Comfort, Taravella 174.75, 9. Mades, Flanagan 171.08, 10. Lauren Peretz, University School 161.03, 11. Daniella Daze, Cardinal Gibbons 150.65, 12. Comunale, St. Thomas 143.15, 13. Maddie Durney, Westminster Academy 141.25, 14. Jeny Magram, University School 98.85, 15. Ali Brohman, Westminster Academy 96.81,16. Daisy Scassera, Westminster Academy 94.05, 17. Leston, Western 88.

100-yard Butterfly: 1.Tyla Martin, Pine Crest 57.96, 2. Mia Fiorenzi, St. Thomas Aquinas 58.37, 3. Emma Lincoln, Cypress Bay 59.46, 4. Amanda Tipton, Nova 1:00.29, 5. Marcella Marinheiro, West Broward 1:00.85, 6. Claudia Reyes, American Heritage 1:01.17, 7. Allison Kopas, University School 1:01.25, 8. Elizabeth Ryder, Cardinal Gibbons 1:01.99, 9. Jenny Zislin, Cardinal Gibbons 1:02.16, 10. Jessica Nava, Westminster Academy 1:02.17, 11. Mikaela Aponte, Fort Lauderdale 1:02.28, 12. Miriyam Ghali, Pine Crest 1:02.37, 13. Diana Rodriguez, Cardinal Gibbons 1:03.86, 14. Jenna Diamond, Coral Springs Charter 1:05.05, 15. Miranda, South Plantation 1:05.96, 16. Krista Gomes, American Heritage 1:06.18, 17. Samantha Briestol, Zion Lutheran 1:06.99, 18. Juliann Plasencia, Archbishop McCarthy 1:07.02.

100-yard Freestyle: 1. Clara Smiddy, South Florida Heat 53.47, 2. Caroline Nava, Westminster Academy 53.47, 3. Jessica Randolph, American Heritage 53.91, 4. Kaelah Chaney, Pine Crest 54.03, 5. Hannah Veale, Pine Crest 54.47, 6. Ali Moser, Nova 54.48, 7. Sophia Oliva, St. Thomas Aquinas 54.53, 8. Brittany Hammond, Pine Crest 54.98, 9. Kristina Brennan, St. Thomas Aquinas 55.64, 10. Zoie Balthazar, South Plantation 56.65, 11. Anne Kuczynski, Douglas 56.78, 12. Daniela Veloza, Nova 57.01, 13. Chloe Adams, Fort Lauderdale 57.35, 14. Carolina Vargas, St. Thomas Aquinas 57.38, 15. Dones, Hollywood Hills 58.28, 16. Amanda Tipton, Nova 58.30, 17. Evy Sands, University School 58.36, 18. Jenna Deal, Douglas 58.44, 19. Schkenaker, Cooper City 58.61, 20. Brianna Dumas, Cardinal Gibbons 58.64.

500-yard Freestyle: 1. Casey Francis, Pine Crest 5:00.22, 2. Melissa Marinheiro, West Broward 5:08.63, 3. Nilza Costa, Sagemont 5:14.40, 4. Daniela Veloza, Nova 5:16.28, 5. Daniella Vandenberg, Sagemont 5:17.12, 6. Sabrina Gornisiewicz, Pine Crest 5:22.10, 7. Emily Kopas, University School 5:24.00, 8. Alex Pacitti, American Heritage 5:24.70, 9. Steph Campo, Coral Springs Charter 5:25.01,10. Rose Smiddy, South Florida Heat 5:25.27,11.Julia Chui, Pine Crest 5:27.06, 12. Kristina Figueroa, Coral Springs Charter 5:29.71, 13. Monica Pradel, Pine Crest 5:32.59, 14. Sophia Oliva, St. Thomas Aquinas 5:36.89, 15. Lilli Calero, Pembroke Pines Charter 5:38.81, 16. Kylie Herman, Cypress Bay 5:38.88, 17. Jenna Diaz, St. Thomas Aquinas 5:41.82, 18. Juliann Plasencia, Archbishop McCarthy 5:43.40, 19. Adrienne Aponte, Archbishop McCarthy 5:47.53.

200-yard Freestyle Relay: 1. Pine Crest 1:39.96 (Kaelah Chaney, Casey Francis, Hannah Veale, Brittany Hammond), 2. St. Thomas Aquinas 1:42.09 (Kristina Brennan, Mia Fiorenzi, Carolina Vargas, Sophia Oliva), 3. Westminster Academy 1:43.73, 4. Nova 1:45.09 (Tipton, Veloza, S. Sanchez, Moser), 5. South Florida Heat 1:46.14, 6. American Heritage 1:48.48 (Audrey Mason, Claire LaFontaine, Krista Gomes, Alex Pacitti), 7. Cardinal Gibbons 1:49.13 (Brianna Dumas, Regan Byrne, Diana Rodriguez, Shanese Langsett), 8. Douglas 1:53.30 (Kerns, Araujo, Kucoy, Cuevas), 9. Cooper City 1:53.41,10. Western 1:54.18, 11. Pembroke Pines Charter 1:56.28, 12. Cypress Bay 1:57.62, 13. Pompano Beach 1:58, 14. Calvary Christian 1:58.38,15. West Broward 1:59.91.

100-yard Backstroke: 1. Clara Smiddy, South Florida Heat 1:00.00, 2. Brittany Hammond, Pine Crest 1:00.40, 3. Allison Kopas, University School 1:02.02, 4. Jenny Zislin, Cardinal Gibbons 1:02.15, 5. Miriyam Ghali, Pine Crest 1:02.16, 6. Alexa Rivera, Westminster Academy 1:03.33, 7. Meagan Abad, South Plantation 1:04.25, 8. Krissa Robinson, University School 1:04.34, 9. Kristina Brennan, St. Thomas Aquinas 1:04.39, 10. Zoe Balthazar, South Plantation 1:04.58, 11. Lindsay Hay, American Heritage 1:04.62 and Sam Sanchez, Nova 1:04.62, 13. Jenna Diamond, Coral Springs Charter 1:04.44, 14. Marcella Marinheiro, West Broward 1:05.11, 15. Mikaela Aponte, Archbishop McCarthy 1:05.12, 16. Jamie Flores, Pine Crest 1:05.24, 17. Nikki Jacobs, Deerfield Beach 1:06.19, 18. Jenna Deal, Douglas 1:06.25.

100-yard Breaststroke:1. Emily Kopas, University School 1:06.18, 2. Lindsey Swartz, Pine Crest 1:09.06, 3. Kaelah Chaney, Pine Crest 1:09.46, 4. Kristina Figueroa, Coral Springs Charter 1:10.46, 5. Lydia Musleh, Coral Glades 1:10.47, 6. Regan Byrne, Cardinal Gibbons 1:11.25, 7. Kelly Kealty, Taravella 1:11.50, 8. Emily Jurich, Douglas 1:11.87, 9. Allison Kopas, University School 1:12.12, 10. Westbrook, Northeast 1:12.36, 11. Elizabeth Zubero, Westminster Academy 1:12.53, 12. Chloe Gerena, St. Thomas Aquinas 1:12.72, 13. Jillian Alexander, Coral Springs Charter 1:13.63, 14. Audrey Mason, American Heritage 1:13.80, 15. Natalya Wozab, St. Thomas Aquinas 1:13.90, 16. Anastasia Hediger, Pine Crest 1:14.01, 17. Regan Byrne, Cardinal Gibbons 1:14.69, 18. Marie Borrelli, St. Thomas Aquinas 1:14.83, 19. Rebecca Wilkerson, Coral Springs Charter 1:15.80, 20. Anastasia Hediger, Pine Crest 1:15.95.

400-yard Freestyle Relay: 1. Pine Crest 3:39.81 (Casey Francis, Tyla Martin, Julia Chui, Hannah Veale), 2. St. Thomas Aquinas 3:41.46 (Sophia Oliva, Mia Fiorenzi, Carolina Vargas, Kristina Brennan), 3. American Heritage 3:46.93 (Claudia Reyes, Lindsay Hay, Alex Pacitti, Jessica Randolph), 4. South Florida Heat 3:51.00, 5. Cardinal Gibbons 3:51.30 (Brianna Dumas, Jenny Zislin, Diana Rodriguez, Elizabeth Ryder), 6. West Broward 3:52.81, 7. Cypress Bay 3:53.54, 8. Coral Springs Charter 3:53.55 (Steph Campo, Rebecca Wilkerson, Kristina Figueroa, Jenna Diamond), 9. University School 3:53.92 (Evy Sands, Emily Kopas, Laryssa Bedley, Allison Kopas), 10. South Plantation 3:56.24, 11. Nova 3:58.28 (Veloza, Sanchez, Wakeland, McGinnis), 12. Westminster Academy 4:00.63, 13. Fort Lauderdale 4:02.56 (Chloe Adams, Adrienne Aponte, Angela Petrillo, Mikaela Aponte), 14. Douglas 4:08.19 (Anne Kuczynski, Bar Bogoslavsky, Emily Jurich, Jenna Deal).

4×50-yard Medley Relay: 1. University School 1:56.06 (Annabella Lyn, Emily Kopas, Allison Kopas, Krissa Robinson), 2. Coral Springs Charter 1:58.40 (Steph Campo, Jillian Alexander, Jenna Diamond, Kristina Figueroa).

4×50-yard Freestyle Relay: 1. University School 1:54.45 (Annabella Lyn, Krissa Robinson, Evy Sands, Allie Elam), 2. Coral Springs Charter 2:01.82 (Jade Tolomeo, Alexa Young, Katalina Gomez, Rebecca Wilkerson).  


1.Pine Crest, 2. American Heritage, 3. St. Thomas Aquinas, 4. West Broward, Douglas,  5. University School, Coral Springs Charter, Westminster Academy.


200-yard Medley Relay: 1. St. Thomas Aquinas 1:41.04 (Brandon Goldman, Michael Crispo, Alex Lilley, RJ Moore), 2. American Heritage 1:43.58 (Taylor Eaddy, Daniel Spas, Nicolas Medina, Julien Pinon), 3. Pine Crest 1:44.96 (Anton Gueneralov, Thomas Doolittle, Alex Evenson, Descartes Holland), 4. Nova 1:45.00 (Parkinson, O’Hara, Aleks Kuzjomkin, Anton Kuzjomkin), 5. University School 1:45.80, 6. Taravella 1:45.82 (Boisson-Yates, Evdokimov, Arnov, Torres), 7. Archbishop McCarthy 1:47.80 (Ryan Hall, Jojo Perez, Kry Nichlany, Matt Mila), 8. South Florida Heat 1:47.91, 9. Chaminade 1:48.76, 10. Flanagan 1:49.00, 11. Westminster Academy 1:49.40, 12. South Plantation 1:49.61, 13. Cardinal Gibbons 1:49.68 (Chad Moody, Fisher Crist, AJ Martin, Dylan Hall), 14. West Broward 1:51.26, 15. Monarch 1:54.09, 16. Coral Glades 1:56.10, 17. Fort Lauderdale 1:56.15, 18. Pompano Beach 1:56.89.

200-yard Freestyle: 1. Jemal Le Grand, Sagemont 1:42.89, 2. Kent Haeffner, Pine Crest 1:44.97, 3. Lucas Debrito, Sagemont 1:45.76, 4. Ryan Hall, Archbishop McCarthy 1:47.67, 5. Lance Rutkin, Fort Lauderdale 1:47.66, 6. Marco Hosfeld, University School 1:47.76, 7. Francisco Parra, Cypress Bay 1:48.08, 8. Matthew Lyn, University School 1:49.81, 9. Sato, South Plantation 1:50.53, 10. Alex Behnam, St. Thomas Aquinas 1:51.10, 11. Sebastian Oberndorfer, University School 1:51.19, 12. Chris Garcia, American Heritage 1:51.32, 13. Jacob Walters, West Broward 1:52.00, 14. Kyle Desrosiers, St. Thomas Aquinas 1:52.06, 15. Carlos Gomez, Sagemont 1:52.23, 16. Ryan Hall, Archbishop McCarthy 1:52.37, 17. David Cantu, Nova 1:52.54, 18. Austin Pillado, Coral Glades 1:54.01.

200-yard Individual Medley: 1. Brandon Goldman, St. Thomas Aquinas 1:54.99, 2. Daniel Spas, American Heritage 1:57.78, 3. Alex Evenson, Pine Crest 2:01.36, 4. Daniel Pereira, University School 2:02.01, 5. Fernando Bohorquez, American Heritage 2:03.81, 6. Alex Evdokimov, Taravella 2:05.69, 7. Vidal Cantu, Nova 2:06.03, 8. Matthew Yakymiw, Cardinal Gibbons 2:07.13, 9. Rafael Marcoux, Fort Lauderdale 2:07.26, 10. Felipe Bricio, St. Thomas Aquinas 2:08.11, 11. Joseph Perez, Archbishop McCarthy 2:09.31, 12. Jonathan Farah, American Heritage 2:09.63, 13. Esteban Velasquez, St. Thomas Aquinas 2:09.66, 14. Thomas Doolittle, Pine Crest 2:10.04, 15. Danny Alvarez, Western 2:10.46, 16. Kearn Kurbanali, St. Thomas Aquinas 2:10.54, 17. Kry Nichlany, Archbishop McCarthy 2:11.31, 18. Ryan Graff, Pine Crest 2:12.59, 19. Ospina, Monarch 2:15.81, 20. Lorenzo Cabrera, St. Thomas Aquinas 2:16.18.

50-yard Freestyle: 1. Alex Lilley, St. Thomas Aquinas 21.59, 2. RJ Moore, St. Thomas Aquinas 22.01, 3. Descartes Holland, Pine Crest 22.07, 4. Scott Clark, American Heritage 22.60, 5. David Stoddard, Douglas 22.75, 6. Hank Contich, Calvary Christian 22.82, 7. Matthew Mila, Archbishop McCarthy 22.84, 8. Ben Fruitman, Sagemont 22.95, 9. Lance Rutkin, Fort Lauderdale 23.00, 10. Stewart, Northeast 23.16, 11. Anton Kuzjomokin, Nova 23.19, 12. Julien Pinon, American Heritage 23.28, 13. Conor Heatherman, Fort Lauderdale and Vidal Cantu, Nova 23.44, 15. Grochowizky, Coral Glades 23.46, 16. William Perry III, West Broward 23.50, 17. Brandon Parkinson, Nova 23.68, 18. Joshua Cutter, Douglas 23.81, 19. Sammy McGinnis, Nova 23.96, 20. Dylan Hall, Cardinal Gibbons 24.22, 21. Jack Cawley, Pine Crest and Valde, Western, 24.28, 23. Jason Woodburn, Westminster Academy 24.36, 24. Bryan, Cypress Bay 24.37, 25. Dylan Hall, Cardinal Gibbons, 24.40.

1-meter Springboard Diving: 1. Zach Laurence, University School 276.75, 2. Fields, Pine Crest 236.40, 3. Alex Warters, Westminster Academy 215.85, 4. Jared Assam, Taravella 203.70, 5. McIntyre, Flanagan 196.20, 6. Fabien Dumareille, Nova 195.85, 7. Johnny Kovalak, Douglas 148.74, 8. Corey Folz, Fort Lauderdale 144.90, 9. Balko, West Broward 119.50. 

100-yard Butterfly: 1. Lucas Debrito, Sagemont 51.64, 2. Alex Lilley, St. Thomas Aquinas 52.28, 3. Brandon Goldman, St. Thomas Aquinas 53.47, 4. Keegan Boisson-Yates, Taravella 53.75, 5. Nicolas Medina, American Heritage 53.88, 6. Chad Moody, Cardinal Gibbons 53.91, 7. Kry Nichlany, Archbishop McCarthy 54.36, 8. Gerado Noguera, Nova 54.65, 9. Jacob Walters, West Broward 55.06, 10. Javier Menchaca, St. Thomas Aquinas 55.20, 11. Digby Nothard, American Heritage 55.57 and Chad Moody, Cardinal Gibbons 55.57, 13. Aleks Kuzjomkin, Nova 57.02, 14. Felipe Farias, St. Thomas Aquinas 57.28, 15. Joshua Cutter, Douglas 58.85, 16. Luke Smutney, South Florida Heat 58.94, 17. Jeremy Kleinman, Fort Lauderdale 59.00.

100-yard Freestyle: 1. Jemal Le Grand, Sagemont 46.23, 2. Daniel Spas, American Heritage 48.57, 3. RJ Moore, St. Thomas Aquinas 49.00, 4. Alex Lilley, St. Thomas Aquinas 49.19, 5. Francisco Parra, Cypress Bay 49.29, 6. Rafael Marcoux, Fort Lauderdale 49.46, 7. Kent Haeffner, Pine Crest 49.47, 8. Alex Behnam, St. Thomas Aquinas 49.59, 9. Matt Mila, Archbishop McCarthy 49.65, 10. Brandon Parkinson, Nova 50.03, 11. Descartes Holland, Pine Crest 50.28, 12. Derek Sibley, South Broward 50.39, 13. Ryan Hall, Archbishop McCarthy 50.45, 14. Ben Fruitman, Sagemont 50.66, 15. Marco Hosfeld, University School 50.82, 16. Taylor Eaddy, American Heritage 50.94, 17. David Stoddard, Douglas 51.30, 18. Matthew Lyn, University School 51.31, 19. Aleks Kuzjomkin, Nova 51.73, 20. Anton Kuzjomkin, Nova 52.02, 21. Francisco Parra, Cypress Bay 52.13, 22. Vidal Cantu, Nova 52.60.

500-yard Freestyle: 1. Kent Haeffner, Pine Crest 4:44.46, 2. Nicolas Medina, American Heritage 4:44.73, 3. Marco Hosfeld, University School 4:53.90, 4. Esteban Velasquez, St. Thomas Aquinas 4:54.66, 5. Carlos Gomez, Sagemont 4:57.18, 6. Lance Rutkin, Fort Lauderdale 4:57.59, 7. Alex Evenson, Pine Crest 4:57.69, 8. Randall Funderburk, Western 5:00.30, 9. Kyle Desrosiers, St. Thomas Aquinas 5:00.68, 10. Matthew Lyn, University School 5:00.75, 11. Daniel Pereira, University School 5:01.66, 12. Fernando Bohorquez, American Plantation 5:03.67, 13. Sebastian Oberndorfer, University School 5:07, 14. David Cantu, Nova 5:07.34, 15. Ryan Hall, Archbishop McCarthy 5:09.31, 16. Nicolas Oberndorfer, University School 5:10.34.

200-yard Freestyle Relay: 1. Archbishop McCarthy 1:29.20 (Matthew Mila, Philippe Coppee, Alex Appleby, Alec Schubert), 2. Pine Crest 1:29.63 (Descartes Holland, Kent Haeffner, Jack Cawley, Ryan Graff), 3. St. Thomas Aquinas 1:30.93 (Alex Lilley, Felipe Bricio, Alex Behnam, RJ Moore), 4. Nova (Vidal Cantu, Aleks Kuzjomkin, Brandon Parkinson, Anton Kuzjomkin), 1:34.15, 5. American Heritage 1:35.10 (Taylor Eaddy, Digby Nothard, Chris Garcia, Scott Clark), 6. Douglas 1:35.37 (Roseman, Cutter, Allen, Stoddard), 7. Taravella 1:35.57 (Arnov, Torres, Evdokimov, Boisson-Yates), 8. Fort Lauderdale 1:35.59 (Conor Heatherman, Ian Vicnansky, Rafael Marcoux, Lance Rutkin), 9. Westminster Academy 1:37.98, 10. Taravella 1:38.03, 11. Westminster Academy 1:39.27, 12. Cardinal Gibbons 1:40.73 (Dylan Hall, Matthew Yakymiw, Andrew Zielinski, Sean Woods).

100-yard Backstroke: 1. Brandon Goldman, St. Thomas Aquinas 51.74, 2. Keegan Boisson-Yates, Taravella 55.46, 3. Chad Moody, Cardinal Gibbons 56.34, 4. Esteban Velasquez, St. Thomas Aquinas 56.57, 5. Nicolas Medina, American Heritage 57.05, 6. Alex Evenson, Pine Crest 57.11, 7. Felipe Bricio, St. Thomas Aquinas 57.65, 8. Danny Alvarez, Western 58.83, 9. Kearn Kurbanalo, St. Thomas Aquinas 59.36, 10. Anton Gueneralov, Pine Crest 59.76, 11. Matthew Lyn, University School 59.94, 12. Matt Smutney, South Florida Heat 1:00.27, 13. Vidal Cantu, Nova 1:00.55, 14. Ryan Henderson, Nova 1:02.54, 15. Clayton Adkins, Calvary Christian 1:02.83, 16. Nicolas Oberndorfer, University School 1:02.91, 17. Rafael Marcoux, Fort Lauderdale 1:03.96, 18. Giancarlo Payamps, Coral Springs Charter 1:04.74, 19. Jeremy Kleinman, Fort Lauderdale 1:05.18, 20. Anthony Bronca, American Heritage 1:05.80.

100-yard Breaststroke:1. Alex Evdokimov, Taravella 1:01.53, 2. Daniel Spas, American Heritage 1:02.82, 3. Daniel Pereira, University School 1:04.16, 4. Thomas Doolittle, Pine Crest 1:04.34, 5. Derek Sibley, South Broward 1:04.49, 6. Hank Contich, Calvary Christian 1:04.56, 7. Brandon Goldman, St. Thomas Aquinas 1:04.58, 8. Matthew Yakymiw, Cardinal Gibbons 1:04.86, 9. Michael Crispo, St. Thomas Aquinas 1:05.98, 10. Ryan O’Hara, Nova 1:05.99, 11. Lorenzo Cabreera, St. Thomas Aquinas 1:07.58, 12. Kevin Wilson, South Florida Heat 1:08.06, 13. Nicolas Shyne, Westminster Academy 1:08.95, 14. Kry Nichlany, Archbishop McCarthy 1:09.00, 15. Jonathan Farah, American Heritage 1:09.04, 16. Ryan Graff, Pine Crest 1:09.12, 17. Alfred Maria, St. Thomas Aquinas 1:09.19, 18. Samuel Korntner, Pine Crest 1:09.61, 19. A. Monti, West Broward 1:09.78, 20. Henry Perillo, St. Thomas Aquinas 1:10.93.

400-yard Freestyle Relay: 1. American Heritage 3:17.80 (Julien Pinon, Nicolas Medina, Fernando Bohorquez, Daniel Spas), 2. Pine Crest 3:21.22 (Descartes Holland, Kent Haeffner, Jack Cawley, Alex Evenson), 3. Sagemont 3:21.71 (Jemal Le Grand, Carlos Gomez, Ben Fruitman, Lucas Debrito), 4. Nova 3:26.15 (Vidal Cantu, Brandon Parkinson, Aleks Kuzjomkin, Anton Kuzjomkin), 5. Archbishop McCarthy 3:26.20 (Ryan Hall, Matt Mila, Kry Nichlany, Jojo Perez), 6. University School 3:26.54 (Matthew Lyn, Daniel Pereira, Sebastian Oberndorfer, Marco Hosfeld); 7. Fort Lauderdale 3:27.14 (Rafael Marcoux, James Dika, Conor Heatherman, Lance Rutkin), 8. St. Thomas Aquinas 3:29.42, 9. Nova 3:30.21,10. Cardinal Gibbons 3:35.47; 11. West Broward 3:38.86, 12. Coral Glades 3:41.65, 13. Western 3:43.78,14. Douglas 3:47.34 (Huang, Roseman, Hofmann, Stoddard), 15. Pompano Beach 3:4913, 16. South Florida Heat 3:51.00.

4×50-yard Medley Relay: 1. University School 1:58.64 (Nicolas Oberndorfer, John Silvera, Grant Besner, Christian Wong), 2. Coral Springs Charter 2:09.35 (Giancarlo Payamps, Tyler Tolomeo, Justin Irwin, Gabriel Tenaglia).

4×50-yard Freestyle Relay: 1. Sagemont 1:29.72 (Jemal Le Grand, Carlos Gomez, Ben Fruitman, Lucas Debrito), 2. University School 1:35.09 (Matthew Lyn, Daniel Pereira, Marco Hosfeld, Nicolas Oberndorfer).


1. American Heritage, 2. Pine Crest, 3. St. Thomas Aquinas, 4. Nova, 5. Sagemont, University School, Westminster Academy.

SOFLO Swimmers Top Performers Of The Week

Ryan Hall, Archbishop McCarthy: The senior placed third in the 200-yard freestyle (1:47.67) and fourth in the 100-yard freestyle (50.45)at the Florida Catholic Swimming and Diving Championships. He was the top seed after morning prelims.

Matthew Mila, Archbishop McCarthy: The junior was fourth in the 50-yard freestyle (22.84) and fifth in the 100-yard freestyle (50.53) at the Florida Catholic Swimming and Diving Championships.

Kry Nichlany, Archbishop McCarthy: The junior was third in the 100-yard butterfly (54.36) at the Florida Catholic Swimming and Diving Championships. Nichlany, Mila and Hall along with sophomore Jojo Perez were members of the second-place 200- and 400-yard freestyle relays.

Juliann Plasencia, Archbishop McCarthy: Placed fifth in the 500-yard freestyle (5:43.40) and sixth against a competitive field in the 200-yard freestyle (2:07.87) in the Florida Catholic Swimming and Diving Championships.

Kaitlin Armstrong, Archbishop McCarthy: Finished sixth in the 100-yard backstroke (1:08.10) and seventh in the 50-yard freestyle (26.62) at the Florida Catholic Swimming and Diving Championships.

Melissa Marinheiro, West Broward: Won the 200-yard freestyle (2:04.32) and 500-yard freestyle (5:08.63) and was a member of the winning 200-yard medley and 400-yard freestyle relays in wins over Cooper City and Northeast.

Marcella Marinheiro, West Broward: Placed first in the 100-yard butterfly (1:00.85) and 100-yard backstroke (1:05.11) and was a member of the winning 200-yard medley and 400-yard freestyle relays against Cooper City and Northeast.

Roger Capote, American: Won the 500-yard freestyle and 100-yard breaststroke in his team’s 80-13 win over North Miami.

Ryan Capote, American: Won the 50-yard freestyle and 100-yard backstroke in his team’s North Miami win.

Jacob Walters, West Broward: Won the 200-yard freestyle (2:01.25) and 100-yard butterfly (57.54) in wins over Cooper City and Northeast.

Gustavo Valery, Flanagan: Won the 200-yard freestyle (1:57.24) in wins over Western and South Broward.

Sharon Robb can be reached at





April 11, 2012

Marcus Franco watched his older brothers Max and Mike during swim practice at Academic Village Pool and knew he was going to follow in their footsteps.

“I saw how much fun they were having,” said the third grader. “My two brothers did it and I wanted to swim for the same swim team.”

Franco, 9, started swimming when he was 3 and competing on the Comets Swim Team when he was 6.

“It’s a lot of hard work but it’s fun in the water,” said Franco, who swims five days a week.

The hard work is beginning to pay off for Franco who turned in his finest performance at the Florida Gold Coast Area 3 Developmental Meet in his home team pool in Pembroke Pines.

During the meet, Franco earned four Junior Olympics qualifying cut times and made finals. He now has seven JO cut times for 10-and-unders.

For his outstanding meet and performance, Franco is the Nike Athlete of the Month. The Nike-sponsored SOFLO club award honors a swimmer for outstanding performance and improvement.

Franco gave age group coach Rose Lockie credit for his improvement in the water.

“I really trained a lot for that meet,” Franco said. “That was really a big meet for me. It was my best meet. Coach Rose helped me with every stroke. She was the reason I did so good. She helped me so much.”

Franco hopes to be as good as his older brothers.

Max Franco swam with the Comets since he was 10 and turns 22 in May. He graduates the United States Merchant Marine Academy on June 18 in Kings Point, N.Y. and plans to go on active duty with the Coast Guard.

Mike has been swimming with the Comets since he was 6 and will soon turn 18 and graduate Everglades High School on June 7. He will leave for the Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut, one of the most prestigious institutions in the U.S., in late July.

“It’s nice to see him follow his brothers,” said his mother Maria. “He enjoys swimming and being with his friends. He swims and plays baseball.”

Asked which brother is the best swimmer, Franco said “It has to be Mikey. He can swim really fast.”

Franco said his favorite stroke is the butterfly.

“I like it because you need to be very strong to swim the butterfly stroke,” Franco said. “You have to stretch your arms a lot to get to first place. Mikey likes the butterfly like me.”

Franco has been playing several positions on his baseball team including pitcher, catcher, first base and third base. His favorite position is pitcher. He likes school and his favorite subject is math. His favorite swimmer is Ryan Lochte who he thinks will “win lots of medals” in London this summer.

“I would like to go to the Olympics some day, I watch them on TV and it looks like fun,” Franco said. “I have to get faster. I have to work hard a few more years. I get faster and faster each year. It’s a lot of work but I like it.”

Sharon Robb can be reached at

SOFLO Earns USA Swimming’s Level One Rating

SOFLO Earns USA Swimming’s Level One Rating


December 27, 2010

Swimmers, parents and coaches have known all along South Florida Aquatic Club had the makings of an outstanding swim club.

Now it’s official.

USA Swimming, the sport’s national governing body, has recognized SOFLO, the newest club in the Florida Gold Coast, Level 1 status in its first year of existence.

It is the starting level for all clubs in USA Swimming’s Club Recognition Achievement Program.

“SOFLO is on the move,” said SOFLO CEO Chris Anderson.

The rating consideration is based on business and organizational success, parent and volunteer development, coach development and education, and athlete development and performance.

SOFLO became an official USAS club on May 1, 20100 when two of the most well-respected USA Swimming clubs in the nation officially merged.

Sponsored by Nike, SOFLO combines more than 450 swimmers and 20 employees including two world-class coaches, two 50-meter Olympic-size pools, three 25-meter and 25-yard pools, and diving and teaching pools at the Coral Springs Aquatic Complex, Mullins Park and City of Pembroke Pines Academic Village Pool.

“It is quite an honor to be already recognized by USA Swimming as a Club Recognition Level 1 team in SOFLO’s first year,” Anderson said. “I think it’s great pooling CST and CSSC resources together. We will be one of the top competitive aquatic clubs in the future, both athletically and administratively.”

“By receiving this award, SOFLO is now eligible to submit a club excellence application for the year 2011. SOFLO will also be able to reap the benefits that USA Swimming has to offer.”

The clubs’ 8-and-under age group programs remain under the auspices of the Coral Springs Swim Club and Comets satellite programs.

Sharon Robb can be reached at

Coral Springs Swim Club Hosts Florida Gold Coast “A” Invitational This Weekend

Coral Springs Swim Club Hosts Florida Gold Coast “A” Invitational This Weekend


October 21, 2010

South Florida Aquatic Club heads the field for this weekend’s Florida Gold Coast “A” Invitational at the Coral Springs Aquatic Complex.

The meet, that begins on Saturday, will be a tune-up for high school swimmers to get in some fine tuning before next week’s district meets get under way in Broward, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties.

For the younger age group swimmers it will give coaches the opportunity to gauge their training and stroke technique.

SOFLO top seeds are.

Allison Kopas, 12, in the 50-yard butterfly.

Catharine Cooper, 10, 50- and 100-yard freestyle.

Kevin Porto, 10, 100-yard freestyle.

Samantha Stinemire, 12, 100-yard backstroke.

Charlotte Hartung, 17, 100-yard backstroke.

Elle Weberg, 25, 50- and 100-yard breaststroke.

Alex Rodriguez, 19, 50-yard breaststroke.

Gustavo Valery, 12, 50-yard backstroke.

Jessie Alcaide, 25, 50-yard freestyle.

Emily Kopas, 14, 400-yard individual medley.

Other teams competing include Davie Nadadores, Metro-Dade Aquatics, Fort Lauderdale Aquatics and Lake Lytal Lightning.

The timed final competition begins on Saturday at 9 a.m. for swimmers in age groups 10-and-under, 11-12 and 13-and-over. The second session that features the 500-yard freestyle begins five minutes after the first session.

On Sunday the competition resumes at 9 a.m. followed by the 400-yard individual medley five minutes after the first session ends.

Meet director is Charlie Alexander, an 11-time Ironman finisher. The public is welcome to attend.

Comets And Coral Springs Swim Clubs Will Each Host Six Meets For 2011 FGC Club Season

In a testimony to the tireless work of coaches, parents, volunteers and sponsors, the Comets Swim Club and Coral Springs Swim Club were each awarded six Florida Gold Coast-sanctioned meets for the 2011 season.

The 2011 meet schedule was approved at a recent FGC Board of Directors meeting.

The Comets will host six meets at the Academic Village Pool in Pembroke Pines and the Coral Springs Swim Club will host six meets at the Coral Springs Swim Club.

The schedule highlights are Junior Olympics in March, Senior Championships in July and Sprint Championships in December. The schedule is as follows:

Jan. 28-20, Comets, FGC Invitational, yards

Feb. 19-20, Coral Springs, FGC Invitational, yards, 14 and under

Feb. 25-27, Comets, FG Area 3 Developmental Championships, yards

March 11-13, Coral Springs, FGC Junior Olympics, yards, 14-and-under

May 28-29, Comets, Area 2 Developmental meet, long course

June 3-5, Comets, Florida Gold Coast Invitational, long course

June 23-26, Coral Springs, Florida Gold Coast Invitational, long course

July 22-25, Coral Springs, FGC Senior Championships, long course

Sept. 10-11, Comets, Area 2 Developmental Y meet

Sept. 24-25, Coral Springs, FGC Invitational, Y meet

Dec. 3, Comets, Broward 8-and-under championships, Y

Dec. 10-11, Coral Springs, County Sprint Championships, Y

High School District Sites Announced For Next Week

It’s show time in high school swimming for South Florida Aquatic Club swimmers.

After two months of high school dual meets and invitationals, high school swimmers and divers will begin their quest for a berth in the Nov. 11-13 FHSAA State High School Meets at the Orlando YMCA.

All host teams and sites are posted on the official state high school website of the Gainesville-based Florida High School Activities Association (

Top district qualifiers advance to the Nov. 4-6 region meets, the final step to the state meets.

The following is the schedule for SOFLO swimmers, parents and coaches in Broward, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach.

Monday, October 25: District 8-3A, Wellington Host at Wellington Aquatic Center, diving, 3:30 p.m.

Monday, October 25: District 12-2A, Olympic Heights Host at Fort Lauderdale High, diving, 9 a.m.

Tuesday, October 26: District 12-2A, Olympic Heights Host at Pompano Beach Aquatics Center, swimming, 9 a.m.

Tuesday, October 26: District 8-3A, Wellington Host at Wellington Aquatic Center, swimming, 9 a.m.

Tuesday, October 26: District 11-3A, Hialeah American Host at Milander Pool, 9 a.m. swimming, 10 a.m. diving.

Tuesday, October 26: District 12-3A, Our Lady of Lourdes Host at University of Miami, diving, 6 p.m.

Wednesday, October 27, District 12-3A, Our Lady of Lourdes Host at Tamiami Poll, 9 a.m.

Wednesday, October 27, District 12-1A, Coral Shores Host at Founder’s Park, swimming, 9 a.m., diving, noon.

Thursday, October 28: District 9-3A, Deerfield Beach Host at Coral Springs Aquatic Club, diving only 3:30 p.m.

Friday, October 29: District 9-3A, Deerfield Beach Host at Deerfield Beach Aquatic Complex, swimming, 9 a.m.

Friday, October 29: District 10-3A, South Broward Host at Plantation Central Park, 9 a.m. swimming, 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. diving.

Friday, October 29: District 11-2A, Dwyer Host at North County Aquatic Complex, swimming, 9 a.m., diving, 10 a.m.

Friday, October 29: District 11-1A, Archbishop McCarthy Host at Pompano Beach Municipal Pool, swimming, 9 a.m., diving, 10 a.m.

Saturday, October 30: District 7-3A, Jupiter Host at North County Aquatic Complex, swimming 9 a.m., diving 10 a.m.

Saturday, October 30: District 10-1A, St. Andrew’s Host at St. Andrew’s School Aquatic Complex, swimming, 9 a.m., diving, 2 p.m.

Admission is $5 for all district meets.

Sharon Robb can be reached at

AQUATIC NOTEBOOK: Issue 18 Lochte, Phelps, Coughlin Lead Golden Goggles Nominations

AQUATIC NOTEBOOK: Issue 18 Lochte, Phelps, Coughlin Lead Golden Goggles Nominations

Lochte, Phelps, Coughlin Lead Golden Goggles Nominations


October 21, 2010

Floridian Ryan Lochte, Michael Phelps and Natalie Coughlin lead the nominations for the Golden Goggle Awards.

The trio each earned four nominations for USA Swimming’s top performances of 2010.

Lochte of Daytona Beach, Phelps and Nathan Adrian were nominated for Male Athlete of the Year.

Coughlin, Rebecca Soni, Dana Vollmer and Elizabeth Beisel were nominated for Female Athlete of the Year.

Phelps, Lochte and Coughlin each had two individual nominations and two relay nominations.

Amanda Beard, Tyler Clary, Jessica Hardy and Kate Ziegler are nominees for the Perseverance Award, given to a swimmer who came back from injury, adversity or retirement.

Breakout Performer of the Year nominees are Teresa Crippen, Eva Fabian, Missy Franklin and David Plummer.

The awards ceremony will be held Nov. 22 at the Marriott Marquis in New York City. The awards serve as a fundraiser for the USA Swimming Foundation.

Fans can vote for the winners online through Nov. 19 at


French Olympian Frederick Bousquet, the reigning European 50-meter freestyle champion, is in the midst of serving a two-month doping ban after testing positive for a banned stimulant. Bousquet tested positive for heptaminol in a June 13 drug test during the Canet swim meet, part of the Mare Nostrum Series in Europe. Bousquet said he took an over-the-counter medicine with the substance to treat a severe case of hemorrhoids for which he has had “for the past eight years.” He told French officials that he usually takes a medicine which does not contain the substance but when he had a painful flareup before the meet he went to a pharmacy where he was given the medicine but failed to read the label ingredients.  The French Swimming Federation suspended him on Sept. 20 which means he will be eligible to return for the French National Championships in December.


This may be one way to get women’s water polo publicity. Twelve members of the U.S. women’s water polo team posed nude for the second annual ESPN the Magazine’s Body Issue which is out on newsstands now. The photo leaves little to the imagination. Several players said they wanted to disprove the stereotype of women’s water polo players as being overly muscular and masculine. A photo of all 12 players appears on one of the magazine’s six covers. Two other shots are used inside the magazine including an underwater photo….The U.S. men’s water polo players were a little more modest posing in swim suits for their fundraising 2011 National Team Calendar. The proceeds will fund training for the 2012 London Olympics. All 16 current team members are featured in the calendar and on the cover. It can be found at Barnes and Noble, or


Marathon swimmer Diana Nyad was forced to postpone her attempt to swim from Cuba to the Florida Keys, a 102-mile swim that has been in the making for 30 years. Nyad announced her decision on October 16th on CNN with Dr. Sanjay Gupta. For most of the summer, Nyad, who grew up in Fort Lauderdale and trained at Pine Crest, was waiting for government approval from both the United States and Cuba. But weather conditions worsened delaying the swim and eventually cancelling it. She plans to make the attempt again in July 2011. She will be age 61. Nyad last tried in 1978 when she was thrown off course by strong currents and was forced to stop. “It seems forever but it will go by quickly,” Nyad told Gupta…

The final race of the FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup 2010 is Saturday, October 23 in United Emirates. Brazilian Ana Marcela Cunha won the last series stop in Cancun in 2 hours, 17 minutes and 29 seconds to lead the women’s series rankings. American Francis Crippen won the men’s race in 2:07:53. South African Chad Ho leads the men’s series.


Brazilian Thiago Pereira and Therese Alshammar of Sweden remain in the lead of the overall rankings for the FINA Arena Swimming World Cup after a successful fourth stop in Tokyo, Japan.

Pereira won the 100- and 400-meter individual medley, 52.84 and 4:04.03 and was the fourth best performer of the meet. He leads the men’s point standings with 88 points.

Alshammar won the 50- and 100-meter butterfly, 25.27 and 56.12, established the most valuable performance of the meet in the 100 and leads the World Cup rankings with 80 points.

In addition to Pereira’s two wins, Australia’s Kyle Richardson won the 50- and 100-meter freestyle, 21.42, 47.26; South Africa’s Roland Schoeman in the 50 breaststroke, 26.42 and 50 butterfly, 22.56; American Peter Marshall in the 100 backstroke, 50.94, Germany’s Steffen Deibler in the 100 butterfly, 50.43 and Austria’s Markus Rogan in the 200 individual medley, 1:53.85.

In the women’s competition, the U.S. won four gold medals, two by Julia Smit in the 200 IM (2:08.05) and 400 IM (4:27.70), one each by Jessica Hardy in the 100 breaststroke (1:05.85) and Elaine Breeden in the 100 butterfly (2:04.54). Sweden’s Jennie Johansson won the 50 breaststroke, Hinkelien Schreuder of the Netherlands won the 50 freestyle and Austria’s Marieke Guehrer won the 100 freestyle.

Japan was impressive in front of its home crowd winning eight gold medals.

Naoya Tomita (2:03.18 200 breaststroke), Takeshi Matsuda (1:50.64 200 butterfly, fastest ever in a textile suit), Tomoko Hagiwara set national records on the opening day of the World Cup. Matsuda had the best performance in the 200-meter butterfly in 1:50.64. Aya Terakawa won the most valuable performance in the 200 backstroke in 2:03.62.

The last three meets of the World Cup now travel to Europe, Oct. 30-31 in Berlin, Nov. 2-3 in Moscow and Nov. 6-7 in Stockholm, Sweden.

Sharon Robb can be reached at

Coral Springs’ Rich Nixon Has Top 10 Finish, Career-Best At Ford Ironman World Championships

Coral Springs’ Rich Nixon Has Top 10 Finish, Career-Best At Ford Ironman World Championships


October 10, 2010

The post-race hamburger, french fries and frozen yogurt never tasted so good for Rich Nixon.

At 46, Nixon, who trains at the Coral Springs Aquatic Complex, had his best finish ever at the grueling Ford Ironman World Championships in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, the granddaddy of all Ironmans.

Nixon, a fitness consultant, finished in a career-best 9 hours, 28 minutes and 33 seconds in his fifth Hawaii appearance. He was sixth in the 45-49 age group and 153rd overall among a field of more than 1,800 triathletes from throughout the world.

It was his first Top 10 finish. The past two times he has been 11th.

“I knew I was having a pretty decent race when I started passing the pro women on the bike and a pretty large pack of them at the beginning of the run,” Nixon said. “I started seeing some good Ironman triathletes and where they were at and where I was at. The closer you are to the front, the crowd starts thinning out.”

Nixon also posted all career-best splits: 1:05:01 for the 2.4-mile swim, 5:04:13 for the 112-mile bike and 3:12:39 for the 26.2-mile run. His transitions were equally impressive, 3:23 from swim to bike and 3:17 from bike to run.

His 3:12.39 marathon qualified him for the Boston Marathon.

Nixon braved rough and choppy water in the swim, nasty crosswinds on the bike and searing heat on the run.

“I am getting faster as I am getting older,” said Nixon, greeted at the finish line by his wife Toni and daughter Morgan, a South Florida Aquatic Club swimmer. Morgan Nixon got the chance to swim with her dad over part of the course before and after the race.

Nixon and his family arrived a week early to acclimate to the time change.

After a well-planned training regimen leading up to the race, particularly for the bike and run, Nixon followed his race plan to a tee.

“My goal for the day was to just go as hard as I could all day, to walk that fine line of having a great day and just blowing up,” Nixon said by phone from Kona before breakfast on Sunday. “I was pushing my limits all day long.”

Nixon, who has become an expert when it comes to training regimens since he first started racing years ago as a newbie, slightly altered his training for this race.

“I did a lot of work this year, training a little bit differently on the bike and run and it paid off,” Nixon said. “I was disappointed with my swim, I was hoping for a little bit faster. I got stuck in a crowd on the way back.”

Nixon wrote his own training plan for the first time and bounced ideas off a University of Michigan physiologist.

“I wouldn’t say I cut back on the duration of my workouts,” Nixon said. “I have added more quality into my workouts. I just think over the years I have been doing so much aerobic-based building that my body is able to absorb all the training. I recovered pretty quickly.”

The heat played havoc all day with athletes and spectactors. Along the Queen K temperatures rose to 104 degrees midway through the race. The pavement was 120 degrees.

The bike course for the 5-foot-11, 160-pound Nixon proved to be a formidable challenge especially around Hawi where cyclists were averaging between 35 and 40 miles per hour.

“Hawi was really bad with the wind,” Nixon said. “You were literally riding your bicycle on an angle. You could look ahead and see everyone on an angle, tilted over into the wind.”

Nixon said that well-known local triathlete Linda Neary Robb of Jupiter was coming down the bike course when a group of cyclists were pushed by the wind over into her. She was out of the race with a concussion.

“It was a pretty windy day,” Nixon said. “You are coming down from Hawi going 35 to 40 miles an hour with those winds and you are holding on for dear life and hoping that a real strong gust doesn’t put you across the street.”

Earlier in the week Nixon, who finished Ironman Florida in 9:11, swam half the course with his daughter Morgan and “smiled the whole way, that was fun. “She would eventually like to do this race and to me that would be so awesome to do the race with her on that day. It would be a cool daddy experience.”

As far as future Hawaii Ironmans, Nixon said “I am going to keep on doing them as long as I am enjoying them. I really love coming to Hawaii.”

Nixon has no long distance events scheduled yet, but has been invited to the Strongman event in April, the longest running triathlon in Japan.

In the pro race, it was an Aussie sweep on the Big Island.

Chris McCormack of Sydney won the title of toughest endurance athlete while Miranda Carfrae of Brisbane won the women’s division.

The men’s race was thrilling with McCormack, 37, a 12-time Ironman winner and 2007 Hawaii champion, winning in 8:10:37, just 1:40 minutes ahead of Germany’s Andreas Raelert. “Macca” overtook the lead during the run.

The women’s race was interesting when the whole dynamic changed after three-time world champion and overwhelming favorite Chrissie Wellington withdrew the day before with flu-like symptoms.

Carfrae, 29, finished in 8:58:36, fourth fastest time ever in Kona.

Former Olympian Andy Potts, 34, had about a 75-yard lead in the swim. He was out of the water in 48:48, 2:24 ahead of Dirk Munsbach of Luxemburg. Brit Rachel London was the first woman out of the water in 52:25. The fastest age group swim of the day was by 30-year-old Texan Andy Gardner in 52:05. The fastest women’s age group split was 54:39 posted by Haley Chura of Atlanta.

Chris Lieto turned in the fastest bike split of 4:23:18 followed by Maik Twelsiek in 4:26:01. McCormack was fifth fastest in 4:31:51. Julie Dibens was the fastest woman cyclist in 4:55:28.

McCormack turned in a 2:43:31 marathon. There were four sub-2:45 marathon runs and six sub-2:50s. Carfrae had a 2:53:32 marathon split.


Beginning in 2011, the World Championship 70.3 Ironman is moving from Clearwater to Lake Las Vegas in Henderson, Nev., just minutes away from the Las Vegas Strip. The race 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike and 13-1-mile run event is set for Sept. 11, 2011.

The Ironman brand will return to Clearwater with the inaugural 5150 Series event on Nov. 12, the last event in the series. The 5150 Series will launch in Miami in March. The 27-year-old St. Anthony’s Triathlon on May 1 will also be included in the 5150 Series. It is the second of a 16-race series for pro and elite athletes.

The series name reflects the total 51.5 kilometer distance of the race (1.5K swim, 40K bike and 10K run). For information, go to

Sharon Robb can be reached at




October 10, 2010

University of Miami junior Dana Hatic was named to the 54th annual Atlantic Coast Conference Academic Honor Roll for the 2009-2010 academic year.

The honor roll, comprised of student-athletes with a grade point average of 3.00 or better, recognizes academic excellence by student-athletes.

The South Florida Aquatic Club swimmer was one of three UM swimmers honored (Susan Smiddy and Hannah Kling were the other two). Twelve swimmers overall were on the honor roll.

The former High School Swimmer of the Year was the National Honor Society Project Coordinator at Coral Springs, her high school alma mater and Broward County Athletic Association Scholar Athlete.


Floridian Ryan Lochte is among 37 of the nation’s top swimmers, including Natalie Coughlin, Aaron Piersol and Rebecca Soni will travel to Dubai to represent Team USA at the 2010 FINA Short Course World Championships, December 15-19.

The U.S. roster in Dubai will feature a total of 20 Olympians, including reigning Short Course World Champions Lochte.

Lochte, who lives in Gainesville and trains with Gregg Troy at his alma mater, University of Florida, earned four gold and two silver medals at the last Short Course World Championships in Manchester, England.

“I’m looking forward to swimming in Dubai, especially since it will be my first time in the United Arab Emirates,” Lochte said. “We have a really strong U.S. team that will compete at Short Course World Championships and it should be a great meet for the swimmers as well as the fans.”

World record holder and Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps will remain in the U.S. to train for the world championships in Shanghai, China and will not compete in Dubai.

This will be the first trip to the United Arab Emirates for a USA Swimming international team. The head coach for the men’s team in Dubai will be the University of Texas coach Eddie Reese while the women will be led by Cal Berkeley’s Teri McKeever.

The meet will also mark the first time the U.S. has sent a full roster to a Short Course World Championships since 2004 when the event was held in Indianapolis.

The U.S. swimmers selected to compete at the Short Course World Championships were chosen based on their performance at the 2010 ConocoPhillips National Championships and the Mutual of Omaha Pan Pacific Championships, which were both held in Irvine, Calif., this past August.

The event in Dubai will be the 10th FINA Short Course World Championships, and event which has been held every two years since the inaugural Championships in Palma de Mallorca, Spain in 1993. This is the first time that the event will be held in the Middle East. The meet will take place at the Dubai Sports Complex, which is a new state-of-the-art aquatics venue.

Sharon Robb can be reached at

SOFLO’s Oliver Comes Home To Shine, Florida State Sweeps Nova Southeastern

SOFLO’s Oliver Comes Home To Shine, Florida State Sweeps Nova Southeastern


October 9, 2010

DAVIE—College swimming seems to agree with Tiffany Oliver.

The South Florida Aquatic Club swimmer returned home to compete in the first dual meets of her college career as a Florida State freshman.

The 18-year-old has wasted no time in making a good impression.

During a two-day road trip in South Florida, the Seminoles women’s team is off to a 3-0 start after defeating Florida Atlantic, Florida International and first-year team Nova Southeastern.

For the second day in a row, Oliver won the 50-yard freestyle in 24.03 ahead of teammates Ashley Butler (25.30) against Nova Southeastern Saturday at the Sharks aquatic complex.

Oliver was also a member of the Seminoles’ winning 200-yard freestyle relay along with CJ Hendry, Brittany Selts and Hannah Wilson that finished in 1:36.11.

With her mother and brother sitting in the stands cheering her on, Oliver looked relaxed and confident.

“It’s nice to be home, it’s pretty nice to have my mom and brother here,” Oliver said. “Tallahassee is pretty nice, too.

“It feels good to be part of a team that is inspired to get up and go,” Oliver said. “The motivation is right up there.

“When it comes to training and technique it’s more sprint. The coaches are helping me in my specific area so that’s why I am improving with that special attention. I expected the coaches to help me but I am a little surprised at doing good this early.”

Oliver is enjoying training with top-caliber swimmers.

“I race all the girls and guys at practice every day,” Oliver said. “It’s a fun atmosphere. College is different. In high school and club we could skip practice once in a while. But here, if you skip practice you’re dead. You don’t skip practice.

“I am learning more specific things in practice now. College has been a good transition for me. I am very happy with my choice.”

Oliver has some lofty goals for her freshman season. She is part of an impressive recruiting class that also includes SOFLO swimmers Tyler Sell and Ashley Hicks.

“I hope to try and make ACCs and NCAAs,” Oliver said. “As a team I would like to win ACCs.”

FSU coach Neil Harper seemed pleased with his team’s season-opening road trip.

“We are pretty serious about these meets because the kids have to travel down here on a bus and we are in heavy training so it’s uncomfortable for them,” Harper said.

“They are in a position where they are fatigued and stressed so when we race an up-and-coming program like Nova Southeastern they have nothing to lose. It’s good for our kids to have some fresh attitudes like ‘hey we don’t care if you’re Florida State, we are going to come at you.’ It keeps our kids honest and we find out what kind of team we are on the road. Anyone can swim good at home.”

Harper is impressed with SOFLO’s freshman trio.

“They have been well-coached in high school and club to the point where the transition they make to college is a very comfortable and smooth one,” Harper said. “They can apply everything they learned and smoothly transition into what we are doing.

“They all seem happy and fit in nicely. We have a close-knit team. They are good kids first. That definitely helps, ethically and morally they are very strong. They come from great families.”

Harper isn’t surprised at their successful start.

“They want to compete and they want to race and make the most of their opportunity as a student-athlete at Florida State,” Harper said. “When they come in like that, it’s a coach’s dream. They have soaked stuff up like sponges. They are freshmen so what have they got to lose? They are going to knock some of these sophomores, juniors and seniors off.

“We feel blessed and very lucky we got those three from down here. They are some slightly polished diamonds and there’s a lot more shine to come.”

Other SOFLO swimmers results:

Ashley Hicks, 18, led off the Seminoles’ winning 200-yard medley relay that won in 1:49.30. She was also third in the 50-yard freestyle in 25.50 and swam the lead-off leg on the Seminoles’ third place 200-yard freestyle relay that finished in 1:39.08.

After winning the 1,000-yard freestyle (9:36.47) and sixth in the 200-yard butterfly (2:02.44) on Friday at FAU, Tyler Sell, 18, was third in the 100-yard butterfly in 1:57.86. Sell led off FSU’s third place 200-yard freestyle relay that finished in 1:30.36.

Paul Murray, 18,  was a member of the Seminoles’ third place 200-yard medley relay that finished in 1:38.68. He was third in the 100-yard freestyle in 47.83 and fourth in the 50-yard freestyle in 21.66. He led off FSU’s second place 200-yard freestyle relay that finished in 1:27.39.


200-yard medley relay: 1. FSU B (Ashley Hicks, Kendall, Sieron, Jamie Barrett, Ashley Butler) 1:49.30, 2. FSU C 1:49.69, 3. FSU A 1:52.03.

1,000-yard freestyle: 1. Marissa Harrington, FSU 10:23.96, 2. McKayla Lightbourn, FSU 10:25.41,  3. Corey Allison, FSU 10:34.82.

200-yard freestyle: 1. CJ Hendry, FSU 1:53.80, 2. Emily Harris, FSU 1:55.85, 3. Char Broadbent, FSU 1:57.41.

50-yard freestyle: 1. Tiffany Oliver, FSU 24.03, 2. Ashley Butler, FSU 25.30, 3. Ashley Hicks, FSU 25.50.

200-yard individual medley: 1. Stephanie Sarandos, FSU 2:07.23, 2. Holly Mills, FSU 2:09.20, 3. Jessica Sabotin, FSU 2:09.32.

200-yard butterfly: 1. Katie Coleman, FSU 2:06.60, 2. Caroline Smith, FSU 2:06.74, 3. McKayla Lightbourn, FSU 2:10.95.

100-yard freestyle: 1. Brittany Selts, FSU 52.30, 2. Hannah Wilson, FSU 52.83, 3. Sara McMahon, FSU 54.71.

200-yard backstroke: 1. Ashley Aranda, NSU 2:17.07, 2. Devan Martin, NSU 2:21.88, 3. None.

500-yard freestyle: 1. Kelley Yakymiw, NSU 5:42.92, 2. Courtney Wilson, NSU 6:03.06, 3. None.

200-yard breaststroke: 1. Kendall Sieron, FSU 2:26.49, 2. Ewa Jamborska, NSU 2:27.28, 3. McKayla Lightbourn, FSU 2:27.51.

200-yard freestyle relay: 1. FSU A (CJ Hendry, Tiffany Oliver, Brittany Selts, Hannah Wilson) 1:36.11, 2. FSU B 1:38.91, 3. FSU C (Ashley Hicks, Julia Henkel, Jessica Sabotin, Ashley Butler) 1:39.08.


200-yard medley relay: 1. FSU A (Danny Nguyen, Matt Shead, Mark Cox, Trice Bailey) 1:36.02, 2. NSU A 1:36.36, 3. FSU C (Michael Aitken, Robby Hayes, Michael Thomas, Paul Murray) 1:38.68.

1,000-yard freestyle: 1. Jack Deedrick, FSU 9:37.51, 2. Tyler Ball, FSU 9:46.51, 3. Jonas Grundstrom, NSU 9:57.57.

200-yard freestyle: 1. Jorge Ospina, NSU 1:42.78, 2. Stephen Pendleton, FSU 1:44.17, 3. Taylor Harris, FSU 1:46.64.

50-yard freestyle: 1. Matt Shead, FSU 21.26, 2. Mark Weber, FSU 21.37, 3. Trice Bailey, FSU 21.41.

200-yard individual medley: 1. Robby Hayes, FSU 1:56.56, 2. Danny Nguyen, FSU 1:56.79, 3. Armin Hornikel, NSU 1:58.46.

200-yard butterfly: 1. Jorge Ospina, NSU 1:51.86, 2. Mark Cox, FSU 1:52.55, 3. Tyler Sell, FSU 1:57.86.

100-yard freestyle: 1. Robby Hayes, FSU 46.58, 2. Trice Bailey, FSU 46.92, 3. Paul Murray, FSU 47.83.

200-yard backstroke: 1. Josh Davis, NSU 1:59.45, 2. Darren Rubenchik, NSU 2:00.98, 3. Ilya Prikhodko, NSU 2:03.54.

500-yard freestyle: 1. Danny Nguyen, FSU 4:45.62, 2. Stephen Pendleton, FSU 4:47.66, 3. Jonas Grundstrom, NSU 4:52.81.

200-yard breaststroke: 1. Matt Shead, FSU 2:07.24, 2. Armin Hornikel, NSU 2:10.89, 3. Cameron Pfahler, NSU 2:15.73.

200-yard freestyle relay: 1. FSU A (Robby Hayes, Mark Weber, Trice Bailey, Matt Shead) 1:24.15, 2. FSU B (Paul Murray, Stephen Pendleton, Matthew Taylor, Mateo De Angulo) 1:27.39, 3. FSU C (Tyler Sell, Brad Morrison, Mark Cox, Michael Aitken) 1:30.36.

Sharon Robb can be reached at

Adlington Breaks 14-Year-Old Record At Commonwealth Games, Aussies Continue To Rule

Adlington Breaks 14-Year-Old Record At Commonwealth Games, Aussies Continue To Rule


October 8, 2010

Reigning Olympic champion Rebecca Adlington of England broke the 14-year-old meet record in the 400-meter freestyle Friday at the 19th Commonwealth Games in Delhi, India.

Adlington won her second event of the Games in 4:05.68, breaking the previous mark of 4:07.68 set in 1986 by England’s Sarah Hardcastle.

Adlington,  ranked second in the world in a career-best 4:04.55, was one of the few bright spots for England as Australia continued its domination in the pool.

Australia’s Kylie Palmer took silver in 4:07.85 and Wales’ Jazmin Carlin grabbed bronze in 4:08.22.

In other Friday championship events at the Dr. S.P. Mukherjee Aquatics Complex in Talkatore Gardens:

Aussie Olympic gold medalist Leisel Jones became the first woman to win the 100 and 200 breaststroke events in three consecutive Commonwealth Games when she won the 100-meter breaststroke in 1:05.84.

Jones is ranked second in the world in the event in 1:05.66.

Aussie teammate Samantha Marshall took silver in 1:07.97 and England’s Kate Haywood took bronze in 1:08.29.

In the women’s 50-meter freestyle, Aussie Yolane Kukla became only the second 15-year-old to win a gold medal at the Games. Ian Thorpe was the first.

Kukla won the event in 24.86, just off her career-best of 24.74. England’s Fran Halsall, coming back from Delhi Belly, took silver in 24.98 and New Zealand’s Hayley Palmer took bronze in 25.01.

The Aussies continued their domination in the women’s 200-meter backstroke final with Meagan Nay winning gold in a meet record 2:07.56 and moving into third place in the world rankings.

It was an emotional victory for Nay whose brother Amos was killed in a car accident last year. Her father, Robert, a 1972 Olympian, had also died in a car accident when she was 4.

“I knew that my dad and my brother were definitely pushing me through that,” Nay said. “This is a dream come true. It’s kind of proof that you can come out the other side.”

England’s Elizabeth Simmonds took silver in 2:07.90 and Aussie Emily Seebohm took bronze in 2:08.38.

Aussie world record holder Sophie Edington won the 50-meter backstroke in a meet record 28.00, breaking Seebohm’s record of 28.03 she set in Thursday’s semifinals. England’s Gemma Spofforth took silver in 28.03. Seebohm and Wales’ Georgia Davies tied for the bronze medal in 28.33.

Australia won the 400-yard freestyle relay in a meet record 3:36.36 with Alicia Coutts, Marieke Guehrer, Felicity Galvez and Seebohm. Canada lost the silver when it was disqualified for early takeoff. England moved into second and New Zealand was third.

Coutts now has four gold medals and Seebohm two golds, two silvers and two bronzes.

The Australian men won their share of gold as well.

Aussie Geoff Huegill won his third 100-meter butterfly Commonwealth Games gold medal, breaking his own meet record and completing an amazing comeback that began more than a year ago when he battled depression and weight problems.

Huegill, 31, won in a career-best 51.69, lowering his meet record of 52.36. It is the second fastest time this year behind Michael Phelps and was his sixth gold medal of his career.

Olympian Ryan Pini of Papua New Guinea and Antony James of England tied for the silver medal in 52.50. Aussie Christopher Wright and Jason Dunford tied for fourth in 52.66.

World record holder Cameron Van der Burgh of South Africa swam a world best time of 27.18 to win the 50-meter breaststroke. Aussie’s Brenton Rickard and New Zealand’s Glenn Snyders tied for the silver medal in 27.67.

In the men’s 100-meter backstroke, England’s Liam Tancock defended his title in a meet record 53.59 to win his second gold medal of the Games. He also won the 50 backstroke.

New Zealand’s Daniel Bell took silver in 54.43 and Aussie Ashley Delaney took bronze in 54.51. Delany won bronze medals in all three backstroke events.

James Goddard of England became the first swimmer to dip under 2 minutes in the 200-meter individual medley in a meet record 1:58.10. Teammate Joseph Roebuck was second in 1:59.86 and Aussie Leith Brodie was third in 2:00.00.

In other Commonwealth Games news, federation chief Mike Fennell said after extensive testing on all three swimming pools being used during the Games show no problems with water quality. Tests were conducted at the village, practice and competition pools. Doctors said the illness may have been caused by “a number of things.”

Sharon Robb can be reached at