SOFLO Defends Team Title; Jacob Walters Leaves Lasting Impression In Final Meet

SOFLO Defends Team Title; Jacob Walters Leaves Lasting Impression In Final Meet


WRITTEN BY SHARON ROBB

June 24, 2013

South Florida Aquatic Club is taking up where it left off in the short course season.

SOFLO successfully defended its title on the fourth and final night of the FLA International Invitational Sunday at the Florida Atlantic University Aquatic Complex.

It was the first major Florida Gold Coast-sanctioned meet of the long course season.

SOFLO won the combined team title with 1,365.50 points and boys team title with 787 points, a 301-point margin of victory over runner-up Blue Tide Aquatics.

SOFLO finished second in the girls competition with 578.50 points behind host FLA which won with 648 points.

SOFLO swimmers dominated the high point age group awards. SOFLO’s Michael Arias, 10, Kyana Castro, 10, Rafael Rodriguez, 11, and Marc Rojas, 19, all won high point titles. Teammates CJ Kopecki, 14, and Melissa Marinheiro, 16, were runners-up and Nicolas Rossi, 10, and Samuel Quintero, 12, were third.

Buoyed by depth and talent, SOFLO swimmers turned in a total team effort and swam several lifetime-best times despite heavy training at Academic Village Pool.

“We did wonderful,” SOFLO head coach Chris Anderson said. “The kids really stepped up. They did some really nice racing against some really solid teams. Most of the older kids were in non-tech suits and they were going best times this early in the season.”

The newer swimmers that have moved into the national group did well including Kylie Herman, Gustavo Valery, Alex Monti and Jonathan Strod.

“They are seeing the hard work pay off and are starting to commit themselves,” Anderson said. “I am pleased with the entire age group program. They rode right into the long course season and got tougher and faster which is great. They should have a lot of confidence after this meet.”

Now, the focus turns to various meets including Divisionals, Junior Olympics, Senior Zones, Speedo Championships and World Championships.

“I definitely think we are closer than a group than we were last year,” Anderson said. “I felt a really strong bond from the older kids as leaders with the younger kids. I’m starting to see the younger athletes emulate what the older athletes are doing. They are a lot closer as a group. The atmosphere was wonderful to see the young and older kids watching and cheering on each other no matter what age group.”

The four-day meet was bittersweet for SOFLO’s Jacob Walters, scheduled to leave on Tuesday morning for West Point. It was his final meet of the season. He saved his best for last.

“It was a pretty good meet,” Walters said. “I finally broke a minute in the 100 fly and dropped in the 200 free. I’m pleased with the results. This was my last chance to do really well and improve my times. I took advantage of that.”

Walters is hoping to walk-on the swim team at West Point. He has basic training beginning July 1 and hopes to try out for the swim team.

Walters is following a family military tradition. His grandfathers were in the Army; his father and uncles went to West Point.

“My father told me all kinds of stories and my grandparents gave me some good advice,” Walter said.

Between the FLA International Invitational and two other FGC meets in Coral Springs and Fort Lauderdale, more than 2,000 swimmers from local, national and international teams competed.

FLA host coach and meet director Duffy Dillon was pleased with the competitiveness of the meet.

“It was so far beyond what I could have hoped for,” Dillon said. “It was everything I hoped for and well beyond what I expected. It was as good as we ever achieved in Fort Lauderdale and in some cases it was faster.

“If it’s a great environment and weather holds you have a chance to have a great meet and we did,” Dillon said. “People seemed happy to be there.”

The meet also broke its attendance record. Last year the FLA meet had 12 teams and 200 swimmers, this year it mushroomed to 24 teams and 407 swimmers.

On the fourth and final day, several SOFLO swimmers won. They were:

Rafael Rodriguez, 11, 400-meter freestyle, 4:41.45, best time, and 100-meter freestyle, 1:03.88, best time.

Esteban Diaz-Velasco, 14, 200-meter backstroke, 2:18.14, best time.

Michael Arias, 10, 50-meter breaststroke, 44.02, best time, and 100-meter freestyle, 1:09.17, best time.

CJ Kopecki, 13, 200-meter butterfly, 2:18.05, best time.

Kyana Castro, 10, 100-meter freestyle, 1:11.76, best time.

SUNDAY RESULTS

TEAM RESULTS

COMBINED: 1 SOFLO 1,365.50, 2. FLA 1,128.50, 3. Blue Tide Aquatics 844, 4. Blue Marlins 684.50, 5. Flyers Aquatics 482.

MEN: 1. SOFLO 787, 2. Blue Tide 486, 3. FLA 480.50, 4. Blue Marlins 419, 5. Flyers Aquatics 203.

WOMEN: 1. FLA 648, 2. SOFLO 578.50, 3. Blue Tide 358, 4. Flyers Aquatics 279, 5. Blue Marlins 265.50.

HIGH POINT AWARDS

WOMEN: 10-and-under, 1. Kyana Castro, SOFLO and Mattie Barfield, FLA, tie, 68; SOFLO: 6. Michelle Marinheiro 21, 7. Sara Quintero 20, 10. Katrina Del Vecchio 10, 17. Kayla Cunningham 1; 11-12, 1. Andrea Santander, FLA 86; SOFLO: 5. Annita Huang 28.50, 9. Jennifer Rodriguez 15, 10. Vanessa Mesa 14, 11. Anabel Vazquez 12, 12. Marianna Serrao 9 and Elise Larin, tie, 9, 14. Katherine DeBarros 8; 13-14, 1. Evie Pfeifer, Flyers Aquatics 68; SOFLO: 4. Jessica Rodriguez 50, 10. Natasha Testa 20, 15. Bianca Monti 13; 15-16, 1. Cheyenna Rhine, Rend Lake 57; SOFLO: 2. Melissa Marinheiro 49, 10. Kylie Herman 22; Open, 1. Madeline Hazle, Blue Tide 51; SOFLO: 13. Alia Atkinson 19, 16. Maria Lopez 17, 20. Marcella Marinheiro 10, 25. Bianca Muniz 7, 25. Amber Hunter 7.

MEN: 10-and-under, 1. Michael Arias, SOFLO 68; SOFLO: 3. Nicolas Rossi 37, 4. Joseph Lee 36, 8. John Paul Handal 20; 11-12, 1. Rafael Rodriguez, SOFLO 80; SOFLO: 3. Samuel Quintero 42, 9. Leonardo Mateus 19, 11. Brandon Moran 18; 13-14, 1. Ryan Logan, Blue Tide 77; SOFLO: 2. CJ Kopecki 57, 10. Kevin Porto 21, 12. Jonathan Strod 18, 13. Alfredo Mesa 16, 17. Esteban Diaz-Velasco 11, 24. Juan Lucas 5, 29. Andres Arias 2, 31. Cristian Rossi 1; Open, 1. Phillip Willett, Flyers 54; SOFLO: 9. Jordan Colon 26, 11. Gustavo Valery 19, 15. Alex Monti 15, 33. Simon Ortiz 1, Teddy Sandoval 1; Open, 1. Marc Rojas, SOFLO 47; SOFLO: 10. Jacob Walters 21, 18. Endi Babi 12.

GIRLS

400-meter freestyle:

11-12, 1. Andrea Santander, FLA 4:46.46; SOFLO: 4. Annita Huang 5:03.09, 5. Katherine DeBarros 5:06.00, 6. Vanessa Mesa 5:09.90, 7. Jennifer Rodriguez 5:10.30, 9. Anabel Vazquez 5:15.83.

200-meter backstroke:

13-14, 1. Rose Smiddy, AK Sharks 2:29.51; SOFLO: 2. Jessica Rodriguez 2:33.75, 10. Anna Montgomery 2:53.83, 12. Abolade Oyetunji 2:59.84; 15-16, 1. Cheyenna Rhine, RLAY 2:27.98; SOFLO: 4. Melissa Marinheiro 2:38.04, 13. Carly Swanson 2:51.41; Open, 1. Iwona Lefanowicz, FLA 2:26.27; SOFLO: 6. Marcella Marinheiro 2:36.64, 16. Kellie Wilcox 2:59.39.

50-meter breaststroke:

10-and-under, 1. Mattie Barfield, FLA 43.50; SOFLO: 2. Katrina Del Vecchio 44.70, 3. Kyana Castro 45.06, 12. Sara Quintero 52.12, 19. Jena Legaspi 57.44; 11-12, 1. Andrea Santander, FLA 37.85; SOFLO: 4. Elise Larin 40.18, 5. Marianna Serrao 40.24, 6. Jennifer Rodriguez 41.42, 9. Anabel Vazquez 42.65, 10. Katherine DeBarros 43.28, 12. Mikaela De Gracia 43.64, 14. Annita Huang 44.08, 15. Alexandra Crespo 44.43, 16. Camila Alvarez 44.47, 18. Kellie Wilcox 45.23; 13-14, 1. Maggie Aroesty, LBA 35.03; SOFLO: 5. Jessica Rodriguez 38.35, 12. Bianca Monti 42.32, 23. Zariya Harris 47.04; 15-16, 1. Mary Edwards, Thrashers 38.15; Open, 1. Ashly Isaacson, WFLA 36.01; SOFLO: 5. Bianca Muniz 39.88.

50-meter butterfly:

10-and-under, 1. Jocelyn Ruiz, Blue Marlins 34.20; SOFLO: 2. Kyana Castro 35.02, 5. Sara Quintero 39.70, 9. Michelle Marinheiro 42.59, 13. Katrina Del Vecchio 45.35, 15. Jena Legaspi 48.25; 11-12, 1. Emily Cordovi, Blue Marlins 30.74; SOFLO: 6. Vanessa Mesa 35.69, 7. Jennifer Rodriguez 36.45, 13. Marianna Serrao 37.39, 14. Elise Larin 37.80, 17. Camila Alvarez 38.94, 21. Alexandra Crespo 40.51, 28. Mikaela De Gracia 44.18.

200-meter butterfly:

13-14, 1. Rose Smiddy, AK Sharks 2:31.33; SOFLO: 2. Natasha Testa 2:44.62; 15-16, 1. Cheyenna Rhine, RLAY 2:35.59; Open, 1. Anett Kovacs, FLA 2:20.24; SOLO: 3. Maria Lopez 2:25.74, 6. Amber Hunter 2:28.46.

100-meter freestyle:

10-and-under, 1. Kyana Castro, SOFLO 1:11.76; SOFLO: 4. Michelle Marinheiro 1:14.41, 5. Sara Quintero 1:17.35, 12. Katrina Del Vecchio 1:22.33, 19. Jena Legaspi 1:28.13; 11-12, 1. Andrea Santander, FLA 1:01.35; SOFLO: 5. Annita Huang 1:06.49, 7. Vanessa Mesa 1:08.77, 9. Anabel Vazquez 1:09.43, 11. Marianna Serrao 1:09.80, 12. Katherine DeBarros 1:11.37, 15. Elise Larin 1:11.93, 19. Alexandra Crespo 1:14.47, 21. Camila Alvarez 1:14.68, 26. Kellie Wilcox 1:16.11, 30. Mikaela De Gracia 1:19.87; 13-14, 1. Maggie Aroesty, LBA 1:02.14; SOFLO: 5. Bianca Monti 1:04.37, 12. Abolade Oyetunji 1:07.50, 13. Jessica Rodriguez 1:07.98, 20. Zariya Harris 1:10.17, 26. Anna Montgomery 1:11.70; 15-16, 1. Colby Harvey, CMA 1:01.41; SOFLO: 3. Melissa Marinheiro 1:01.56, 13. Carly Swanson 1:07.05; Open, 1. Laura Galarza, WA 1:00.13; SOFLO: 7. Amber Hunter 1:02.25, 8. Marcella Marinheiro 1:03.64, 12. Maria Lopez 1:03.60, 21. Bianca Muniz 1:05.93.

BOYS

400-meter freestyle:

11-12, 1. Rafael Rodriguez, SOFLO 4:41.45; SOFLO: 4. Samuel Quintero 4:51.57, 6. Leonardo Mateus 5:11.74.

200-meter backstroke:

13-14, 1. Esteban Diaz-Velasco, SOFLO 2:18.14; SOFLO: 5. Kevin Porto 2:28.17, 8. Alfredo Mesa 2:34.88; 15-16, 1. Dylan Lu, BTA 2:14.54; SOFLO: 8. Simon Ortiz 2:39.42; Open, 1. Austin Manganiello, AK Sharks 2:08.90; SOFLO: 12. Samuel Quintero 2:37.90.

50-meter breaststroke:

10-and-under, 1. Michael Arias, SOFLO 44.02; SOFLO: 3. John Paul Handal 44.28, 5. Nicolas Rossi 45.89, 14. Joseph Lee 49.92, 22. Akira Huang 52.95, 27. Alejandro Mateus 57.46, 28. Mark Andre De Gracia 57.58, 33. Michael Crespo 1:09.93; 11-12, 1. Matthew Newman, BTA 37.96; SOFLO: 3. Brandon Moran 38.97, 12. Ethan Hew 46.83; 13-14, 1. Joshua Umrysh, BTA 32.62; SOFLO: 7. CJ Kopecki 37.16, 8. Jonathan Strod 37.80, 14. Cristian Rossi 40.14, 15. Andres Arias 40.47, 16. Juan Osorio 41.06, 19. Rodrigo Rodriguez 42.92, 21. Andre Molko 45.36; 15-16, 1. AJ Reid, FLA 31.65; SOFLO: 2. Jordan Colon 33.19, 11. Alex Monti 36.93, 12. Gustavo Valery 37.23, 14. Teddy Sandoval 38.98, 19. Simon Ortiz 43.26; Open, 1. Garland Sullivan, WA 30.65; SOFLO: 2. Marc Rojas 30.93.

50-meter butterfly:

10-and-under, 1. Henry Faria, Blue Marlins 34.90; SOFLO: 4. Michael Arias 35.81, 8. Joseph Lee 38.17, 10. John Paul Handal 38.60, 12. Nicolas Rossi 39.35, 22. Akira Huang 44.04, 32. Mark Andre De Gracia 58.07; 11-12, 1. Ryan Aroesty, LBA 30.88; SOFLO: 2. Rafael Rodriguez 32.19, 7. Samuel Quintero 34.33, 8. Brandon Moran 36.82, 24. Ethan Hew 47.99.

200-meter butterfly:

13-14, 1. CJ Kopecki, SOFLO 2:18.05; SOFLO: 5. Jonathan Strod 2:27.82; 15-16, 1. Victor Escalante, Marmo 2:17.98; SOFLO: 8. Teddy Sandoval 2:43.67; Open, 1. Austin Manganiello, AK Sharks 2:08.06; SOFLO: 2. Jacob Walters 2:14.89, 3. Endi Babi 2:15.76, 7. Brandon Moran 2:53.70, 8. Leonardo Mateus 2:58.19.

100-meter freestyle:

10-and-under, 1. Michael Arias, SOFLO 1:09.17; SOFLO: 2. John Paul Handal 1:10.15, 3. Nicolas Rossi 1:10.35, 6. Joseph Lee 1:13.57, 20. Akira Huang 1:23.59, 31. Marcos Vazquez 1:30.08, 35. Alejandro Mateus 1:37.59, 36. Mark Andre De Gracia 1:38.91, 39. Miguel Crespo 1:53.34; 11-12, 1. Rafael Rodriguez, SOFLO 1:03.88; SOFLO: 7. Leonardo Mateus 1:07.83, 24. Ethan Hew 1:29.39; 13-14, 1. Ervin Marin, Blue Marlins 57.49; SOFLO: 8. Cristian Rossi 1:00.47, 8. Jonathan Strod 1:00.66, 10. Esteban Diaz-Velasco 1:01.43, 12. CJ Kopecki 1:01.84, 14. Kevin Porto 1:02.46, 18. Alfredo Mesa 1:03.26, 20. Juan Osorio 1:04.48, 30. Andre Molko 1:06.22, 31. Andres Arias 1:06.36, 32. Rodrigo Rodriguez 1:06.49, 39. Bryan Moran 1:10.21; 15-16, 1. Viktor Toth, DBS 54.91; SOFLO: 4. Alex Monti 57.50, 5. Gustavo Valery 57.85, 14. Jordan Colon 1:01.70, 17. Teddy Sandoval 1:02.32, 22. Simon Ortiz 1:04.41; Open, 1. Chad Harrington, FLA 52.64; SOFLO: 15. Jacob Walters 57.77, 16. Marc Rojas 57.84.

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