Nine pre-collegiate TNT swimmers met with their teammate Kyle Grissom, who is currently competing for USC, as they all joined world-class athletes such as World Record holder Katinka Hozzu, and Olympic Gold Medalist, Conor Dwyer, and Anthony Ervin, over the July 12th – 15th weekend at the 2018 Los Angeles Invitational held at the USC Uytengsu Aquatic s Center.
A veteran to the meet since he was 14 years old, Kyle Grissom made it to the B-final finishing 16th in the 50 meter freestyle after posting a lifetime best of 23.93 in the preliminary heats. He then returned to the B-final in the 100 fly to touch second in that heat with a time of 54.99. Our remaining three finalists earned their spots in the D-final with Preston Niayesh leading that group by touching 2nd in the D-final for the 25th place finish in the 200 meter breaststroke where his 2:24.41 was his lifetime best by over two seconds, and so well under his 15-18 team record set at the Clovis meet the previous weekend as a 2:26.64. His time is now the fastest in the history of the team since he slid under Sam Hansen’s senior record of 2:24.99 set at Sectionals at Canyons in the Olympic year of 2012. Preston currently stands as the 36th fastest 17-year old in the nation for the event. His second D-final came from a preliminary swim of 1:07.08, and resulted in the second highest finish among the pre-collegiate TNT swimmers at 28th. Only one other dual finalist existed at the meet, and that was JD Koster who maintained a consistent performance in the 200 meter butterfly after posting a time of 2:09.89 in the preliminary heats, and then improving that time to a 2:09.29 in the D-final, and 29th place finish. His second final came in the 200 meter breaststroke, where he finished 31st after posting a time of2:29.28 in prelims. Danielle Albright was the only other finalist, and she did this on the last day of the meet, in the 100 meter breaststroke by finishing 31st in the D-final after posting a time of 1:15.94 in the preliminary heats, and not requiring any scratches – a bona fide finalist.
Only one other team record was broken at the meet, and that came from 14-year old Bryan Wong who made his first appearance, competed in three events, improved all three, and posted a new team record in the 200 meter breaststroke with a 2:31.66, which just slid under Preston Niayesh’s previous record of 2:31.89 set at the Age Group Zone meet in Hawaii three years earlier in 2015. Bryan’s time currently ranks 34th nationally for boys at the same age and this was his highest finish at 56th at the meet. Alonso Escobedo’s highest finish was 49th in the 400 IM (4:52.33), Visalia’s Lyla Flores touched 93rd in the 200 back (2:37.50), Mackenzie Garza , also of Visalia, finished 74th in the 50 free (27.94), Selma’s Jonas Huckabay touched 85th in the 400 free (4:29.43), and Alex Roberts had her highest finish as 41st in the 200 back (2:26.09)