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NIEH LEADS TCA AT WINTER BLAST

Tuolumne County Aquatics age-group ace Austin Nieh, 13, powers his way through the 200-yard freestyle during Saturday's "Swim for the Turkey" at the Sonora Sport and Fitness Center. (Kevin Sauls/Copyright 2002, The Union Democrat).
Tuolumne County Aquatics age-group ace Austin Nieh, 13, powers his way through the 200-yard freestyle during Saturday's "Swim for the Turkey" at the Sonora Sport and Fitness Center. (Kevin Sauls/Copyright 2002, The Union Democrat).

Austin Nieh paced Tuolumne County Aquatic age-group and Masters swimmers with his performances in the Winter Blast at Folsom and the annual Swim for the Turkey at Sonora Sport and Fitness Center.

Nieh, 13, swam personal bests in all three of his events in the Folsom youth meet, clocking 1:17.77 for a 15-second drop in the 100-yard backstroke, 28.89 in the 50 freestyle for a B time and 3:05.73 in his debut in the 200 breaststroke.

In the turkey swim, with competitors going for 11 Diestel turkeys donated by the fitness center, Nieh posted a B with with a 13-second improvement in the 100 free (1:05.71) and also set personal records in the 200 free (2:28.14) and the 200 backstroke (3:04.69).

He was joined at Folsom by 11-year-old Daniel Friel, who swam six personal bests, and Patty Allen, 14, who swam two. Friel had a seven-second improvement in the 200 free (2:33.74) for a B time, and also went faster in the 100 free (1:12.81, B time), 100 breast (1:41.48), 500 free (6:48.85), 100 individual medley (1:26.41), and 50 breast (46.68).

Allen had a best and a B time in the 100 fly (1:19.79) and a best in the 100 free (1:02.20).

In the age-group turkey meet, Shannon Conant, 16, swam B times in the 50 free (32.25) and 200 free (2:34.37). She just moved in from Southern California.

Makenna Twohig, 13, made her TCA debut and 13-year-old Jenny Feriani dropped 26 seconds in the 200 IM (3:13.22) and 100 back (1:28.18), while Sofi Pothier, 13, was solid in five events.

The Masters side of the turkey was highlighted by 10 swimmers from ages 26 to 65 competing for the first time — Connie Birdsall, Brian Finigan, Linda Hogue, Vaughn Hurley, Megan Mills, Matt Oliver, Melissa Palmer, Toby Palmer, Nancy Pothier and John Swanson.

Barb Mailloux had four bests, one of them a 28-second improvement in the 200 free as she broke four minutes for the first time (3:47.59). Paul Jones went 12 seconds faster in the 20 free and Jodie Foster improved by 11 seconds in the 50 breast.


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