SAN JOSE, California, August 2. THE third night of finals at the 2013 Speedo Far Western Long Course Championships saw Team Quebec take their third meet relay record in as many nights. The International teams from Mexico and Canada flexed their muscles during the boy's 400 freestyle finals, and a handful of age group girls continued to collect individual event titles across the age groups.
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10 year old Asia Minnes, swimming unattached for the Phoenix Swim Club, kicked off the night with a dominant victory in the girls 200 IM. Pulling dramatically ahead during the breaststroke, Minnes finished three body lengths ahead of the competition with a 2:42.96. Second place went to Palo Alto's Taylor Schaffer with a 2:48.24.
Vivian Wang again asserted her dominance in the 11-12 age group, capturing another meet title in the 200 IM with a 2:28.41. Only 30 minutes later, Wang came back to take the girls 50 freestyle title (28.04). Pleasanton's Erika Brown was another dual winner on the girls' side. Brown posted an easy 2:28.31 in the prelims of the 200 IM (just good enough for lane one) and then teased the competition by dropping down to a 2:23.81 for the win. Brown -- in a fashion reminiscent of Wang - also took the girls 13-14 50 freestyle title with a 26.98.
Sierra Marlins' Bryce Mefford came away with two golds after a tough 200 IM, 400 freestyle double. Mefford and Palo Alto's Alex Liang put on a great show in the boy's 13-14 200 IM, pushing each other down the home stretch. Mefford ended up out touching Liang, 2:12.26 to 2:13.71. In true grudge match form, Mefford and Liang went head to head later in the evening in the boy's 400 freestyle. Mefford came away with a 4:09.90 win after the two broke away from the rest of the pack on opposite ends of the competition pool. Although Liang and Mefford were in lanes 2 and 6, respectively, they still effectively used partner pacing to cut big time off their preliminary times. Liang finished a hair behind Mefford with a 4:10.07.
International swimmers took over the boy's 15-16 400 freestyle. With the exception of Palo Alto's Vincent Busque in lane 8, the entire finals field was either from Mexico or Canada. Mexico's Diego Hernandez qualified first for finals with a 4:11.28, but fell to third after Team Quebec's Samuel Belanger and Etienne Paquin-Foisy (poised to strike on either side of him) rallied for first and second. Paquin-Foisy finished first with a 4:06.08, Belanger took second (4:08.77) and Hernandez settled for third with a 4:10.25.
The night finished fast with 18 heats of 200 freestyle relays. In what is becoming a pattern, Team Quebec's 13-14 girls relay squad broke another meet record. Allyson Kis (27.60), Jillian Pauletto (27.17), Juliette Vermes-Monty (27.90) and Eliana Beaudry (27.57) worked together to clock a 1:50.24 winning time, tenths ahead of the 1:50.41 meet record set in 2008 by Lake Oswego Swim Club.
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