A strong start leads to a strong finish for PASA swimmers


Palo Alto senior Alex Liang won the 200 free, placed second in the 100 fly and helped Palo Alto Stanford Aquatics take the 400 free relay crown Friday in the USA Futures Championships at Stanford.

Gunn grad Jennifer Campbell, who will be a sophomore at Cal in the fall, had to feel a bit unlucky on the day. She was a total of a tenth of a second away from helping PASA win two events.

Alex Liang
Stanford-bound Benjamin Ho, Max Pokutta, Joe Molinari and Isabelle Henig all swam in the 'A' final for PASA.

PASA's Albert Gwo, Lucca Martins, Joao Ama, Daichi Matsuda, Michael Lincoln, Brian Copley, Leah Goldman, Vicky Wong, Stefanie Ting, Zoe Lusk, Grace Zhao, Alexandra Hartman and Chloe Kennedy Isleta all appeared in consolation finals.

Liang and Ho helped jump-start PASA with a 1-2 finish in the 200 free. Liang went 1:51.34 while Ho came in at 1:53.11. Ama recorded a time of 1:56.55 in the 'C' final.

Pokutta swam 1:05.44 to finish ninth in the 100 breast. Ripon's Eric Tolman won in 1:03.76.

Liang finished the 100 fly in 54.47, just behind win Andrei Minakov of the Terrapins, who touched the wall at 54.04. Molinari placed sixth with a time of 56.12.

Ho went 57.30 and Gwo 56.22 in the 'B' final while Martins finished 57.71 in the 'C' final. Stanford's Bradley Zdroik had the second-fastest qualifying time but withdrew from the final.

Matsuda was PASA's top swimmer in the 400 individual medley, going 4:37.20 in the 'B' final. La Mirada's Kevin Vargas set the standard with a 4:28.21. Pokutta, Lincoln and Copley all appeared in the 'C' final.

Liang, Ho, Gwo and Ben Johnson gave PASA the victory in the relay with a time of 3:26.57, over a second faster than Canyons Aquatic Club.

The 100 fly turned out to be a popular race for PASA, with Henig finishing fifth at 1:02.41 and Campbell placing second 1t 1:01.55, .06 seconds shy of Canyons' Nikol Popov.

Stanford's Nicole Stafford and Kim Williams swam in the prelims, each in a time worthy of qualifying for the 'A' final. Isleta passed on the 'C' final.

Goldman won the 'B' final of the 200 free in 2:05.01, while Wong went 2:08.48 in the 'C' final. Lusk swam in the prelims, before concentrating on the 100 breast in the finals. Lusk went 1:14.47, just behind Ting's 1:14.05, in the 'B' final. Isleta went 1:14.81 in the 'C' final.

Zhao swam 5:08.93 in the 'B' final of the 400 IM, while Hartman had a nice improvement over her prelim time by going 5:06.35 in the 'C' final.

Campbell was joined in the relay by Isleta, Lusk and Goldman, as PASA raced 3:51.93, a mere .04 seconds to relay winner Santa Clara Swim.

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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