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April 21, 2015

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Gamecock freshman swimmer Tomas Peribonio has been invited to represent Ecuador in the 2015 Pan Am Games. This year’s games run July 10-26 in Toronto, Canada. The swimming portion of the Games will take place July 14-18 with preliminaries at 10 a.m. ET each day and finals following at 7 p.m. ET.

“It’s been a dream for a while that maybe I can participate (in a meet like this) for Ecuador,” said Peribonio. “This (opportunity) is eye-opening for me, how my success can lead to such big meets.”

Peribonio will compete in the 200 and 400-meter IM, 400-meter freestyle and 200-meter backstroke.

“For many years the Pan Am Games has represented the final major competition heading in to the Olympic year,” said associate head coach Mark Bernardino. “All of the countries in the Pan American region have prided themselves on sending many of their potential Olympians to this meet. It is one of the largest gatherings of athletes in the world and included all the major Olympic sports. Obviously we are very honored to have Tom represent both the University of South Carolina and Ecuador in these games. We’re hoping that for Tom, this meet, his first international competition, will represent an opportunity for him to display his Olympic potential.”

“We’re really proud of Tom,” added head coach McGee Moody. “This is an outstanding honor and an opportunity to represent Ecuador at a very prestigious meet. It is our job as coaches now to make sure he’s ready this summer to go compete and do the best he can. This is just another step in his process to reaching the goals he’s set for himself.”

In his first year with the Garnet and Black, Peribonio earned All-America honors in the 1,650 freestyle and 800 freestyle relay at the NCAA Championships. He finished fourth overall in the 1,650 freestyle and eighth in the 500 freestyle at the SEC Championships. He ranks second all-time in school history in the 1,000 and 1,650 freestyle and the 400 IM. He also owns the third-fastest time in school history in the 500 freestyle.