Pine Crest’s Julia Podkoscielny Verbally Commits To University Of Florida

By Sharon Robb
FORT LAUDERDALE, October 12, 2021–Julia Podkoscielny, one of the nation’s most sought after high school swimmers, verbally committed to the University of Florida.

The Pine Crest junior, ranked among the top 10 in the nation, will join the Class of 2027 and is expected to make an immediate impact.

The 2000 U.S. Olympic trials qualifier will be coached by women’s head coach and 1988 Suriname Olympic gold medalist Anthony Nesty and train in the same pool as seven-time Olympic gold medalist Katie Ledecky, a UF volunteer swim coach training with Nesty for the July 26-August 11 2024 Paris Olympics.

“I am beyond excited to announce my verbal commitment to continue my swimming and academic career at the University of Florida,” Podkoscielny announced on social media.

“Thank you to my coaches, friends and family who have been with me to this point. I can’t wait to be a Gator. I love the team, coaches and their philosophy. Can’t wait to be on campus and fully experience being a Gator.”

Podkoscielny, a two-time Swimmer of the Year, is a member of the girls’ two-time state 2A champion Pine Crest Panthers.

In 2020, she won 2A state and region titles in the 200-yard individual medley (1:59.14/1:59.00) and 100-yard backstroke (54.29/53.76). In October, she was named to the USA Swimming Scholastic All-American team.

In 2019, she won 2A state and region titles in the 200-yard individual medley (2:00.46/2:04.73) and 100-yard backstroke (54.76/56.16).

Podkoscielny is one of the county’s most versatile swimmers. She is ranked in six individual events, including four as No. 1, and two relays in the weekly Broward County Honor Roll.

She is a three-time champion at the USA Swimming Futures Championships in Greensboro. She won the 200-meter backstroke (2:15.07), 200-meter individual medley (2:18.24) and 400-meter individual medley (4:50.42) and was third in the 100-meter backstroke (1:03.46).

In 2018, she won six individual events and had two seconds in the 28th Speedo Winter Championships. She was a finalist in the 1A state championships and won a region title in the 100-yard backstroke as an eighth grader.

She broke some impressive Florida Gold Coast records in 2020. In the 400 individual medley she went 4:12.91 to break current UF swimmer and SOFLO’s Kathleen Golding’s 2016 record of 4:14.46. In the 200-yard backstroke she broke a 9-year-old record in 1:55.39, lowering St. Andrew’s alum Tasija Karosas’ previous mark by 0.94 seconds.

Fast swimming is in her DNA. Her father and Pine Crest head coach Mariusz Podkoscielny, is a two-time Olympian for Poland (1988 and 1992). At the 1988 Seoul Olympics, Podkoscielny finished fifth in both the 400-meter and 1500-meter freestyles. He set an Olympic Record during the prelims heats of the 400 free, but it was later broken in finals by East Germany’s Uwe Dassler. Her mother, Dagmara, is a former Polish national team member.

Sharon Robb can be reached at

Pine Crest’s Podkoscielny Double Winner, SOFLO’s Dinehart Seventh On Final Day Of USA Swimming Futures Championships

By Sharon Robb

GREENSBORO, N.C., August 4, 2019—Julia Podkoscielny of Pine Crest Swimming made a lasting impression at the USA Swimming Futures Championships at Greensboro Aquatic Center.

The 14-year-old won two events on Sunday, the final night of competition. Podkoscielny won the 200-meter backstroke in a lifetime-best 2:15.07 with a total time drop of 5.25. She was the top seed after prelims in 2:18.21, shaving 2.11 off her previous best.

Podkoscielny also won the 200-meter individual medley in 2:18.24, another lifetime-best with a 1.47 drop.

Her double victories came on the heels of her winning the 400-meter individual medley by nearly three seconds with an Olympic Trials qualifying standard time of 4:50.42, an 11-second drop from her previous best of 5:01.34. The qualifying standard is 4:51.79.

It was the first time the talented swimmer flew to a competition, competed in an indoor meet and raced at a national level meet. She swam a total of eight individual and relay events.

Swimming DNA runs in the family. Her father, Pine Crest coach Mariusz Podkoscielny is a two-time Olympian for Poland. He finished fifth in both the 1500 and 400-meter freestyles at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, South Korea. He set the Olympic record in the 400 prelims. He also competed in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. He was also a successful collegiate swimmer at University of Arizona.

Pine Crest Swimming was the top Florida Gold Coast team placing sixth among 55 girls teams with 115.5 points. Podkoscielny scored 76 of those points.

SOFLO’s Olivia Dinehart, 14, was seventh in the 1500-meter freestyle in 17:23.56. Teammate Mallory Schleicher was 15th in 17:43.09.

South Florida Aquatic Club boys’ 4×100-meter medley relay finished sixth in 4:01.53 with Dominic Bono, Juan Pablo Pineda, Miguel Sierra and Robert Wilson.

South Florida Aquatic Club girls finished 13th with 78 points.

TAC Titans won the men’s team title with 236 points to top a field of 69 teams. Lake Lytal Lightning was the top Florida Gold Coast boys finisher placing 20th with 43 points. Sarasota Sharks won the women’s team title with 267 points.

: 1. TAC Titans 236, 2. Marlins of Raleigh 228, 3. Nashville 125, 4. Academy Aquatic 124, 5. Sarasota Tsunami 113.

WOMEN TEAM TOTALS: 1. Sarasota Sharks 267, 2. Blue Dolfins 235, 3. Marlins of Raleigh 228, 4. TAC Titans 173.5, 5. Dynamo 119, 6. Pine Crest 115.5, 9. North Palm Beach 88, 13. South Florida Aquatic Club 78.


100-meter freestyle:
1. Sophie Housey, GPG 57.24, 2. Savannah Barr, SYS 57.82, 3. Blair Stoneburg, TCA 58.06; SOFLO: 65. Paige Lane 1:00.76, 74. Gaby Banks 1:01.25.

200-meter backstroke:
1. Julia Podkoscielny, Pine Crest 2:15.07, 2. Morgan Jones, EAC 2:16.81, 3. Alaina Skellett, CANE 2:16.98; SOFLO: 45. Elena Dinehart 2:25.53

200-meter individual medley:
1. Julia Podkoscielny, Pine Crest 2:18.24, 2. Jennifer Secrest, NPB 2:20.27, 3. Hannah Holman, TNAQ 2:20.33; SOFLO: 46. Molly Golding 2:27.70, 50. Olivia Dinehart 2:27.98, 77. Mallory Schleicher 2:31.63.

1500-meter freestyle:
1. Madison Murtagh, FSLA 17:05.56, 2. Adrianna Cera, MOR 17:11.24, 3. Polina Rukosuev, FSLA 17:12.71; SOFLO: 7. Olivia Dinehart 17:23.56, 15. Mallory Schleicher 17:43.09.

4×100-meter medley relay:
1. TAC Titans 4:20.45, 2. Sarasota Sharks 4:21.38, 3. Marlins of Raleigh 4:21.94, 24. South Florida Aquatic Club 4:34.76 (Elena Dinehart, Olivia Dinehart, Paige Lane, Gaby Banks).


100-meter freestyle:
SOFLO: 46. Miguel Sierra 54.36, time drop 1.53, 51. Robert Wilson 54.50, 73. Juan Mora 55.11, 96. Juan Pablo Pineda 56.98, time drop.

200-meter backstroke:
1. Braeden Haughey, TAC 2:02.17, 2. Erek Nelson, FINS 2:04.82, 3. Lance Norris, Unattached 2:05.17.

200-meter individual medley:
1. Phillip Meffert, MMA 2:07.06, 2. Bryar Long, ACAC 2:07.15, 3. Evan Petty, NAC 2:08.08.

800-meter freestyle:
1. Grant Davis, GOLD 8:17.79, 2. Riley Sampson, CFM 8:19.94, 3. Andrew Jordan, CMSA 8:20.03; SOFLO: 40. Dominic Bono 8:45.35, time drop 7:52.71.

4×100-meter medley relay:
1. Mid Michigan Aquatics 3:54.93, 2. Waves of Wilmington 3:57.77, 3. TAC Titans 3:58.48, 6. South Florida Aquatic Club 4:01.53 (Dominic Bono, Juan Pablo Pineda, Miguel Sierra, Robert Wilson).

Sharon Robb can be reached at