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Tigershark swimmers turn on heat during summer long course competition

UPublish story by Cheryl Fuller

CUYAHOGA FALLS: Several local swimmers heated up the recent summer long course season with some blazing-fast performances for the Cuyahoga Falls Riverfront YMCA Tigersharks.

Giovanna Cappabianca, 11, of Stow led the way with four first-place finishes at the recent Lake Erie Swimming Inc. Long Course Championship at Cleveland State University.

Cappabianca outswam the competition in the 11-12 girls 200-meter breaststroke with a time of three minutes, 2.5 seconds. Also captured first in the 50 breaststroke (37.44), 100 breaststroke (1:23.23) and 1500 freestyle (20:54.97).

Kaden Smesko, 10, of Uniontown finished first among 10-and-under boys in two events: the 50 freestyle (32.36), 100 freestyle (1:13.88).

Cappabianca and Smesko also were among four Tigershark swimmers to complete last month in the 2012 Central Zone 14 and Under Championship at Donner Park Pool in Columbus. The competition was open to swimmers from Ohio and 11 other central states who acheived tough qualifying times during the long course season, which takes place in 50-meter pools.

Smesko achieved three top 10 finishes among 10-and-under boys: seventh in the 100 backstroke, ninth in the 50 butterfly and 10th in the 50 backstroke.

Cappabianca placed in the top 10 among 11-12 girls in the 50 breaststroke (second), 200 breaststroke (third) and 100 breaststroke (fifth).

Richie Kurlich, 12, of Kent and Emerson Zahab, 12, of Green qualified for the zone meet in one event each: Kurlich in the 400 freestyle (5:01.45) and Zahab in the 50 freestyle (30.89).

Andrew Appleby, 17, of Silver Lake also qualifying for two prestigious championship events, representing the team last month at the Speedo Junior National Championships at Indiana University and the Central Zone Section 3 Championships at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.

At the multi-state zone competition, Appleby finished 11th in the 50 freestyle (24.57) 12th in the 100 backstroke (59.74) and 14th in the 100 freestyle (53.86).

For more information about the Cuyahoga Falls Riverfront YMCA Tigersharks and the team's upcoming short course season, visit


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