Spike & Splash 2016: For a Cure

October 6, 2016

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Credit: Riley Gillis (used with permission)

Swim coach Bill Shaffer states, “I know Coach Mara is watching and could not be more proud of the swimmers and volleyball players. The way she guided individuals to be more than they knew they could be; through her teaching, creating and running of the “golden girls”, and of course coaching is still present all year round…but especially during this event every year.”

Picture this: more than 600 students coming together on a Wednesday night in support of one cause. Pretty amazing right? On the tenth anniversary of Academy’s annual Spike and Spike event, students from the school came out to support the school’s volleyball and swim teams in support of a cure for breast cancer. Starting in 2006, the annual event hit home after the school lost beloved Swim Coach, Mara Schultz. Since then, Spike and Splash has become one of Academy’s most anticipated events.

Freshman Joely Barkett(left)pictured here with Cailin Cannella (right), an Academy seventh grader and swimmer, recently diagnosed with cancer. The swim and volleyball teams painted their nails yellow in honor of her. Coach Bill Shaffer has emphasized to his team, "no one fights alone." #beatcancer
(Photo Credit: Sophia Bahr/Achona Online) Freshman Joely Barkett(left) pictured here with Cailin Cannella (right), an Academy seventh grader and swimmer recently diagnosed with cancer. The swim and volleyball teams painted their nails yellow in her honor. Coach Bill Shaffer has emphasized to his team, “no one fights alone.” #beatcancer

The swim team demolished Tampa Catholic winning almost every individual event and dominating every relay. Sophomore, Katie Taulbee, went 57 seconds in her 100 freestyle event and in addition, Senior Lara Lontoc placed first in the 50 freestyle event with an astounding 25:68 time. Since being on the team since she was a freshman, the swim team and this event holds a special place near Lontoc’s heart.

Lontoc states,“we won almost every event, and we dominated the relays. Our relays are definitely our strongest asset, each one is worth 20 points, so winning all three relays racks up 60 points in addition to all the individual events.”

screen-shot-2016-10-06-at-10-40-25-am
(Photo Credit: Sophia Bahr/Achona Online) Junior Bella Kirkpatrick(left) swam the 200 freestyle event, going at a speedy 2:02.3 and admits,“sometimes being on the swim team, it’s rare that people come out to support us, but that all changes on Spike and Splash where I know tons of my classmates are with us every step of the way.”

 

The volleyball team encountered a competitive match with TC’s team, but were victorious in the end.They were neck-and-neck during each set but as each player played their strongest, the game resulted in a 15- 13 win during the fifth and final set.

Senior Brittany Bramwell was one of the leaders of the student section at the volleyball game. She recalls, Bramwell recalls,“My favorite part about being in the student section was being so loud and crazy that we had to be repeatedly told to move back into the stands but we always managed to make it back onto the floor. It felt like the louder we cheered the stronger our team was.”
(Photo Credit: Ashley Lambert (used with permission)
Senior Brittany Bramwell was one of the leaders of the student section at the volleyball game. She recalls,“My favorite part about being in the student section was being so loud and crazy that we had to be repeatedly told to move back into the stands but we always managed to make it back onto the floor. It felt like the louder we cheered the stronger our team was.”

But maybe what was so memorable about that night, was the overwhelming range of excitement after the jags had won the last set. Filled with pride from the win, the student section crowded onto the middle of the gym floor and chanted the Alma Mater. A few moments later, the class of 2017 concluded the night with a sporadic victory jump into the pool. 

Senior Lindsay Calka posts, "On a scale from 1-10, my love for you people is a 17."
(Photo Credit: Sophia Bahr/Achona Online) Senior Lindsay Calka posted later:”On a scale from 1-10, my love for you people is a 17.”

Altogether, Spike and Splash 2016 raised a total of $11,000 for the Moffitt Cancer Center and as the tenth year of Academy’s annual Spike and Splash came to a close, the spirit of The Sisters of the Holy Names was evident throughout the gymnasium with smiles all around.

Principal Stephanie Nitchals emphasizes, “we are a Catholic school, which means we are a family.  We need to support each other in all of our endeavors.  Athletics is a part of who we are and we all need to celebrate it.”

 

 

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