By Patty Pope
The El Dorado Hills Tasmanian Devils Swim Team recently nominated four college scholarship recipients: Taz swimmers and 2012 Oak Ridge High School graduates Eric Rohrer, Amanda Jones, Taylor Wetzel and Megan Moestopo.
“This year the Scholarship Committee recommended that we do not stick to just two scholarships, which is the norm for us. Rather, we awarded four scholarships in the amount of $1,000 each,” explained club president Brett Jones.
Scholarship selections are based on what is called “Caesar” qualities as espoused by the EDH swim organization: leadership, academic and athletic attendance, courage, humor, noble sportsmanship, exemplary attitude, and a minimum GPA of 3.0 throughout all four high school years.
“Congratulations to our scholarship recipients. You all had a great season and will do great things in college. Thank you for your hard work and dedication to the Taz,” said head coach Jason Brown.
In addition to the dedication of academic scholarships, Taz concluded the 2012 season with their annual Award’s Night Picnic on July 31 where the Taz Board of Directors recognized swimmers for outstanding personal and team accomplishments. Jones addressed the Taz audience at Bertlesen Park.
“I was very proud of our team this year,” Jones addressed the Taz audience at Bertlesen Park. “We continue to raise the bar high and as a result I believe we are the class of the league. Our team spirit and sportsmanship at Champs was very commendable. We had at least 50 swimmers and parents poolside during the four swim-offs that we were involved in. At Champs our kids stepped up and fought very hard as validated by the score. One example was demonstrated by Brandt Parkerton. Parkerton,13, was seeded 2oth in the backstroke, tied for 10th in the preliminaries, won his swim-off and ended up taking 5th in the final!”
Continued Jones, “There were 12 SSL records broken at Champs, six of which were by Taz swimmers. Nick Grinnell led the charge with three. Two of those records erased two of the oldest Taz records remaining. They stood since 1982. Annie Harriman took down the 100-yard back record while Morgan Jones and Patrick Sammon erased the 100 yard free and 25-yard fly records respectively.”
Notable athletes scoring big at this year’s Champs swim meet include: Alexis Mackie, 8, 3rd High Point 7-8 girls; Patrick Sammon, 8, 3rd High Point 7-8 boys; Terry Chen, 12, 2nd High Point 11-12 boys; Nicholas Grinnell, 12, 1st High Point 11-12 boys; Morgan Jones, 14, 1st High Point girls 13-14, 3rd straight high point girl and 6th high point in her 10 year career (Morgan also holds a 2nd and 3rd High Point); Josh Verner, 17, 1st High Point 17-18 boys; Annie Harriman, 18, 1st High Point 17-18 girls.
In addition to attaining plentiful personal bests this season, the Taz team brought home the Suburban Swim League Challenge Cup. The Challenge Cup is when a large team such as Taz is paired with another team, and their dual meet points are tracked throughout the season. The two paired teams that score the most receive the Cup.
“We won the Challenge Cup; we were paired with the Folsom Sea Otters,” explained Jones. “Next year we will be poised to bring home the Championship Trophy, I can feel it!”
“As the Taz season comes to a close, I want to congratulate all of the swimmers on a great season. You all swam hard and we accomplished so much as a team,” reflected Coach Brown.