Team Santa Monica swimmers Andi Murez, Zak Murez and Robbie Shilton had strong performances in the United States Swimming Junior Championships August 6th through 10th in Indianapolis.
The annual meet culminated the long course season for swimmers ages 18 and under and it brought together swimmers from across the country.
It was the first trip to the Junior Championships for Andi Murez and Shilton, but Zak Murez participated in the competition in 2005.
Zak, the eldest of the Murez children, qualified for the meet in his best event, the 100-meter breaststroke. Following his second-place finish in the event at the Los Angeles City Section finals, Murez posted a best time of 1:08.11 in the long course version in late July.
The recent Venice High School graduate will now turn his attention toward starting classes at Yale University in the fall.
Andi Murez, a 15-year-old junior at Venice High School, competed in the 50-, 100-, and 200-meter freestyle events as well as the 100-meter butterfly. Murez finished 29th in the country among 15-to-16-year-old girls with a time of 58.04 in her best event, the 100-meter freestyle.
Shilton, 17, is a senior at Culver City High School. He qualified for the 200-meter breaststroke and 200-meter individual medley at the Western Zone Speedo Champions Series meet in July. His individual medley time of 2:11.31 placed him 86th in the nation among 17-to-18-year-olds in that event.
For Team Santa Monica coach Jon Carroll, the trip marked a return to the Indianapolis natatorium where his career began.
“In my first year of coaching, I had the pleasure of being on the deck for the 2000 Olympic Trials,” Carroll said. “To be able to come back to this historic site as a head coach on the 25th anniversary of the pool was truly special.
“Each of these swimmers has put in a tremendous amount of work and commitment to reach this level of competition. They have served as models to the rest of the team of what can be achieved with consistent, dedicated training.”
In addition to the strong showing of the three swimmers in Indianapolis, the remainder of the team swam to a tenth-place finish at the 2007 Southern California Swimming Junior Olympics hosted by FAST aquatics at the Janet Evans Swim Complex in Fullerton. The team will now go on break until August 27th.
Team Santa Monica is a nonprofit swimming club that serves Santa Monica and its surrounding areas. The team trains daily at the Santa Monica Swim Center.
Information, www.teamsanta monica.org/.