Tigersharks shine in Santa Clara meet

Kevin Dyer and Abby Niehoff had impressive showings to help lead the Carson Tigersharks Swim Club as it wrapped up an impressive effort over the weekend at the Santa Clara International Grand Prix and Junior meets.

In the junior meet, Dyer, who just turned 15, competed in his first meet with 15-16-year-olds and more than held his own against older swimmers. He swam to a personal best of four minutes, 31.97 seconds in qaulifying for the finals in the 400-meter freestyle.

He came back to lower his time to 4:20.01 in the finals to take fourth. "He swam the races a little bit different," Tigershark coach Jim Puleo said.

Puleo noted he negative split his first race in which he was able to swim faster in the second half than the first.

"I had him try to go out with the big boys," said Puleo about starting faster in the finals.

"That says something about his courage in a race," said Puleo about Dyer being able to lower his time in the finals.

In 13-14 girls, Niehoff qualified for the finals in the 200 free in 2:14.64 and then swam to a personal best of 2:11.22 in the finals to take third.

In 15-16 girls, Barbara Perkins finished the 200 free in 2:26.23. "That's a great time for her as well," Puleo said.

Dyer also took fourth in the 1,500 free in a personal best 17:28.05. While it wasn't one of her better races, Niehoff was still able to take second in the 800 free in 9:30.83. Also in 13-14 girls, Tatum Boehnke finished in 10:06.03.

Puleo noted that his team's qualifying times are based on adjust times at altitude, which are somewhat inflated since his swimmers are used to swimming at altitude.

"It gives a misleading time," he said. "By and large they still swam their fastest. It's just no reflected in the altitude adjustment."

In the grand prix meet, Lauren Costella, who will be a junior at Stanford, qualified 27th for the finals in the 400 individual medley. She went on to lower her time by more than three seconds to finish in 25th in the finals in 5:06.85. Puleo said Costella was able to better package her race in the finals.

Costella also took 21st in the 800 free in 9:12.08. Puleo noted that Costella's training is geared to preparing for the National Championships to be held in August in Irvine, Calif.


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