By Chris Price
(Pasadena, Texas) The Eagle Finswimming Club of Pasadena beat six other teams for top honors at the 2006 Texas Open Finswimming Invitational, defeating second place and meet host Finswimming Association of Southeast Texas.
FAST's Kristine Kelly of Deer Park, Jenna Taylor and Christian Castro both of Pasadena combined for six gold medals, but it wasn't enough to defeat the Eagle Finswimming Club's depth. The Eagles won only won gold medal, but as a result of that depth, defeated the host team, FAST, 64-58.5.
The Texan Finswimming Club of Houston (TFC) finished in third place with 39.5 points, followed in fourth place by San Jacinto College with 20 points, University of Houston in fifth place with 11 points, followed by Hillsdale College of Michigan and the US Navy-Florida Finswimming, tying for sixth place with 2 points.
Kelly won the women's 50 yard apnea, 200 yard surface and the 100 yard surface, establishing two new meet records.
Kelly broke the meet record in the 50 apnea with the time of 20.91 seconds and the 200 yard surface with the time of 1:56.61.
Taylor won the 50 yard surface and the 25 yard apnea, while Castro taking top honors in the 100 yard surface.
San Jacinto College's (SJC) Joshua Bass won the gold medals in the 25 yard apnea and 50 yard apnea.
Jacob McSwain, of the Eagle Finswimming Club, won the gold medal in the 200 yard surface, with University of Houston's (UH) Max Newlin winning the 50 yard surface.
Winning silver medals include Taylor in the 100 yard surface, Hannah Parham (EFSC) in the 50 yard apnea and 25 yard apnea, Daniel Green (EFSC) in the 100 yard surface, Bobbie Culver (EFSC) in the 200 yard surface, Adrian Hernandez (EFSC)-50 yard apnea, Ricardo Arredondo (TFC)-200 yard surface, Lauren Edwards (TFC)-50 yard surface, Bass-50 yard surface and Castro-25 yard apnea.
Those finswimmers winning bronze medals include Castro-50 yard apnea, Parham-100 yard surface, Hernandez-100 yard surface, Donna Anderson (EFSC)-200 yard surface, Edwardo Sanchez (EFSC)-200 yard surface, Nereyda Sepulveda (TFC)-50 yard surface, Marcus Puckett (EFSC)-50 yard surface, Edwards-25 yard apnea, and Newlin-25 apnea.
"I was very proud of all the finswimmers at the meet. It was very gratifying to have some many finswimmers and teams represented in the first meet of the 2006 season. I look forward to competing against them this season," said Darla Kelly, Head Coach for the Eagle Finswimming Club.
The next meet on the schedule is the Gulf Coast Invitational in April, followed by the Gold Cup International Invitational in May. These will be the final two meet for local finswimmers to make the times to be considered to represent the United States or their home countries at the World Scholar-Athlete Games at the University of Rhode Island in late June.
The Texas Finswimming Association (TFA) is the official governing body for competitive and recreational finswimming in Texas.