FULLERTON, Calif., November 14. IRVINE Novaquatics standouts Staciana Stitts, Lenny Krayzelburg and Gabe Woodward led the way in early season competition taking wins in the Fullerton Senior Development Meet held at the Janet Evans Aquatics Complex.
The 2003 Pan American Games 100 meter breastroke champ Stitts won a convincing victory in the 200 meter breaststroke with a time of 2:33.20. Stitts whose personal best time is 2:29.31 achieved at the 2000 Olympic Trials, set the early pace with a split of 1:13.60 to beat the field by nearly seven seconds. "I think I could have been faster", commented Stitts.
"I had a lot left coming home. For now that is a pretty good swim."
Stitts' counterpart, Dave Denniston took the men's 200 breaststroke with a time of 2:25.34
The Novaquatics demonstrated their sprint domination with wins in both the women's and men's 100 meter freestyle event. Colleen Lanne took the women's title with a time of 58.74 just ahead of teammate Tara Thomas (59.54). In the men's version of the century event, the NOVA men dominated by taking the top five places. Gabe Woodward took the event with a come from behind finish, stroking to a time of 51.75. Finishing second was Jason Lezak (52.02). Rounding out the field were Luke Anderson (53.01), Brad Schumacher (53.24) and Scott Tucker (53.42).
The Novaquatics also took victories in the women's and men's 1500 meter freestyle with Marissa Joseph turning in a season best time of 17:38.23 while the men's winner, Lucas Azevedo touched at 16:29.74. Bethany Goodwin took the women's 100 meter butterfly with a time of 1:02.85, while Sherry Tsai captured the 100 meter backstroke event in a season best 1:05.12.
No event stirred as much anticipation as the men's 100 meter backstroke. A capacity crowd of well over 700 swimmers and every spectator in the house crammed to the deck's edge to witness Lenny Krayzelburg's victory in a time of 57.20. "Very few of these athletes have had the chance to watch Lenny swim," commented NOVA Head Coach Dave Salo about the excitement of watching the dorsal champion. "It is great to see an athlete like Lenny so respected by the swimming community."