Niehoff and Dyer impress
Abby Niehoff and Kevin Dyer continued to impress for the Carson Tigersharks as the team had many personal best times at the Adam Szmidt Memorial Pacific Swimming Long Course Junior Olympics on Friday in San Jose.
Niehoff won her third title in two days, following up her wins in the 100 and 1,500-meter freestyles on Thursday by winning the 800 free on Friday. Niehoff also took second in the 200 free.
Tigershark coach Jim Puleo said he believes Niehoff is the only swimmer in the meet who has swam six freestyle races in the last two days – two each in the 100 and 200 along with the 800 and 1,500.
“Everything now is going to be downhill for Abby,” said Puleo, commenting that her long distance events are out of the way.
In the 13-14 girls 200 free, Niehoff qualified fourth in the preliminaries in two minutes, 13.82 seconds and came back to take second in a Pacific reportable time of 2:11.95, meaning her mark is one of the best times in a region covering Northern California and much of Nevada. Just as impressive was Dyer, who qualified sixth in the 15-16 boys 200 free preliminaries in 2:07.79 and came back to take second in a personal best and Far Western qualifying time of 2:04.46.
Puleo has always been pleased when his swimmers are able to swimmer faster than they did in the preliminaries. Dyer was also able to come back from a subpar peformance in the 1,500 free even though he won the event.
“I think that’s pretty impressive for her and also for Kevin,” said Puleo about what Niehoff and Dyer have accomplished. “He came back and showed some toughness.”
Niehoff won the 800 free in a personal best and Pacific reportable time of 9:23.09. Tatum Boehnke took fifth in 13-14 girls in a personal best and Far Western qualifying time of 10:02.99. Barbara Perkins took sixth in 15-16 girls in a personal best 9:55.16.
In other finishes, Boehnke took 31st in the 200 free in a personal best 2:24.64, Samantha Ashmore took 39th in the 15-16 girls 200 free in a personal best 2:26.17, Perkins took 29th in a personal best 2:23.77 and Michaela Gillenwater took 29th the 10 and under girls 200 free in a personal best 2:49.96.
In addition, Caroline Suh took 338th in the 13-14 girls 100 butterfly in 1:17.99, Gillenwater was 28th in 1:37.19. In the 50 backstroke, Gillenwater was 15th in a personal best 40.77 and Cody Gillenwater was 30th in 11-12 boys in 39.80.
After the first day, the Tigersharks, one of the smallest teams in the event, was in ninth out of 67 clubs. But Puleo noted his team will likely fall in the standings because the relays have started and his team has no relays. The meet concludes on Sunday.
“Relays are going to really kill us,” Puleo said. “I think the kids are doing a great job of supporting each other and racing.”