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  • Writer's pictureDan Russoman

Stingrays celebrate season with awards ceremony

Many of the Hammonton Stingrays swimmers who attended last weekend’s league championships are joined by coaches Lauren Ciccariello and Analiese Bova at the Hammonton Swim Club last week. (Courtesy Photo)

HAMMONTON—The Hammonton Stingrays concluded their regular season on July 23, and held an awards ceremony at the Hammonton Swim Club on July 27 to celebrate a strong, fun-filled summer swim season. All 88 Stingray swimmers were recognized for their dedication and commitment to the swim team.

Improvement awards were conveyed to swimmers according to the number of times each topped their previous best time from meets throughout the season, referred to as “speeding tickets”, in the form of bronze (1-3 times), silver (4-5 times), and gold medals (6 or more). Stingray swimmer Siena Ezzi received honors for earning 14 speeding tickets, the most earned of all swimmers.

The team’s Most Improved Swimmer was awarded to one female and one male swimmer that showed the greatest improvement throughout the season, the award winners were both first-season swimmers, Julia Gallagher and Harrison York.

The top three male and female swimmers were recognized and awarded high point awards, based on total points earned for the team by placing in meets over the five swim meets. The top three female swimmers (points earned): Macy McDowel (67.75); Raelynn McDowel (53.5); and Grace Gribbin (52.5). The top three male swimmers (points earned): Giovanni Catania (79); Kyle Muller (48.25); and Kellen Frankel (48).

Twelve-year-old swimmer, Maggie McCloud, received the Comeback Kid Award to recognize her courage and comeback to the swim team. McCloud suffered an injury in early May and couldn’t swim with the team until July and missed the team’s first two meets.

Although still not allowed to dive into the pool, McCloud came back to help the team in the final three meets, even swimming up two divisions in the 15-18 girls relay at Haddon Twp.

The recipient of the Robert Ruberton Most Valuable Swimmer Award was determined on a rubric measuring the combination of attendance (practices/meets), improvement and performance. Four swimmers earned this award, two female and two male swimmers: Grace Gribbin and Macy McDowel and Giovanni Catania and Shayne Herbert.

The recipient of the Annamae Jacobs Award was Isabella Falciani in recognition of her outstanding commitment to the sport of swimming and her dedication and loyalty to the swim team. The recipient of the Coach John Bohanna Memorial Award was JohnPaul Mazza in appreciation of his exceptional leadership in serving as a role model to his teammates and his dedication to the swim team.

Seventeen-year-old swimmer, Massimo Catania, was honored at the event for breaking three longstanding swim team records during the final meet on July 23. Massimo broke swim team records in the following events (previous record holder, year): 100 Meter Individual Medley (Michael Shostak, 1999); 100 Meter Freestyle (Matt Wilner, 1995); and 50 Meter Butterfly (Robby Ruberton, 1990).

The season ultimately concluded with league championships at Crystal Lake Pool in Haddon Twp. this past weekend. The Stingrays had a total of 30 swimmers slated to swim in the event and results from league championships will be available in next week’s Gazette.


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