Last weekend, the 55th Annual Woodson Invitational was hosted in Fort Lauderdale. 15 teams attended with some of the fastest swimmers in the state competing from all four classes. Many teams such as Bolles, King’s Academy, Berkeley Prep, and Winter Park traveled from across the state to participate at one of the most competitive meets of the FHSAA season.

Team Scores and Individual Standouts:

Photo Courtesy: Jacob Pishko

After a successful meet with many fast swims, Bolles took the men’s overall win. Leading swimmers such as Paul DeGrado, Rafael Ponce de Leon, and Ethan Thomas paved the way to victory. Pine Crest, as one of the largest teams at the Woodson Invitational, took the overall womens and overall combined team titles. Swimmers such as Ester and Sara Lin, Alexandra Meszaros, Julia Podkoscielny, Joshua Hanks, and Nicholas Vale were key players in their victories. Saint Andrews came in a close second on both the womens and the mens sides. Swimmers such as Shayna Fetes, Aspen Gersper, Emily Trieschmann, Tiago Pereira, Joshua Balbi, and Ryan Nordheim contributed to their success.

Just to mention a few other high scoring swimmers at this meet include:

  • Daniel Escobar from American Heritage Plantation
  • Logan Ingerick from Berkeley Prep
  • Paige Maceachern from Boca Raton
  • Rachel Contich from Calvary Christian
  • Amanda Kopas from NSU University
  • Joshua Zuckowski from King’s Academy
  • Lockett Bowley from Winter Park

    Photo Courtesy: Jacob Pishko

Individual Awards:

Each year, the Ann Marshall Outstanding Competitor Award is given to one girl in attendance. All teams at the meet get one vote to determine the winner. The award’s namesake, Ann Marshall, is a Pine crest alumni and a 1972 olympic gold medalist. This year, the award was presented to Andrea Santander, a junior at Pine Crest. Santander is the reigning 200 free state champion and won both of her events this meet. She also broke the 31 year old Pine Crest school 200 IM record at the 2018 Woodson Invitational.

The Andy Coan Award is given to one boy each year. This award is also determined by one vote from each team. Andy Coan is a Pine Crest alumni. Coan still holds a Pine Crest school record, and formerly held the 100 free world record. This award was presented to Thomas Piza, a senior at Saint Andrews. Piza is a 2017 state finalist. He won both of his events at this meet and was a major contributor to Saint Andrews’ wins in both freestyle relays.

Special congratulations are in order for these two and everyone that participated last weekend!

By Jojo Richter