Leading the way
Allen Moody | Highlands TodayIf all Lake Placid's Cody Lambert brought to the table were his skills in the swimming pool, he would still be a coach's dream. But Lambert's contributions to the Green Dragons' swimming team went far beyond just what he accomplished in the water.
Published: January 3, 2013
Published: January 3, 2013
On a team with a number of underclassmen, Lambert showed the drive and dedication necessary to be a successful swimmer the impression he made on the program will last well into the future.
"Cody was this year's team captain and a powerful example of dedication and leadership for the young people of this school and community," said Lake Placid coach Tom Creel. "This was Cody's fourth year swimming for Lake Placid High School and his legacy will carry on through the underclassmen that he has led through his strong leadership and example that allowed this team to grow into a competitive powerhouse."
Lambert's dedication to the sport started showing through in a big way last year, as he competed on all three Lake Placid relay teams that scored points in the regional meet and also finished a solid 10th in the 100-yard freestyle at regionals.
He took it to a new level this season, as he placed second in districts in both the 50 and 200 freestyle, was sixth in the 100 freestyle and competed on the Green Dragons' third-place finishing 400 freestyle relay team.
At regionals, Lambert jumped to the 200 medley relay and helped the team win the consolation finals and saw the 400 freestyle relay team place sixth. Individually, he placed eighth in the 50 freestyle and was 12th in the 100 freestyle, scoring points in all four events for the second straight year.
For his accomplishments, Lambert has been selected as the Highlands Today All-Highlands Boys Swimmer of the Year.
Tony Karl, senior, Sebring Karl has been a leader of the Sebring swim team and this year definitely led by example, advancing to regionals in four events. He competed on Sebring's 200 medley relay and 200 freestyle relay teams and advanced as an individual in both the 100 backstroke and 200 IM.
At regionals, Karl scored points in two events, placing 11th in the 200 IM and helping the Blue Streaks' 200 freestyle relay team to a 13th-place finish.
Steven New, sophomore, Avon Park New enjoyed a stellar season for the Red Devils, taking the Class 1A-District 5 title in the 50 freestyle and following that up with a seventh-place finish at regionals. New was fourth in districts in the 100 freestyle, placing 16th at regionals, and also swam on Avon Park's fourth-place finishing 200 freestyle relay team.
Andrew Brown, freshman, Lake Placid Brown came into the season as a much-heralded freshman after his impressive accomplishments in the junior swimming ranks. He certainly lived up to expectations and then some.
"Andrew was a freshman this year but no stranger to swimming," Creel said. "He has been swimming year-round with the Highlands Hurricanes and has made quite an impressive mark in the swim community."
Brown had a pair of top-eight individual finishes at regionals and also competed on the sixth-place finishing 400 freestyle relay team and ninth-place finishing 200 medley relay team.
But Creel believes the best is yet to come.
"Andrew began his freshman high school year with a bang, shattering to school records in the 100 breaststroke and the 200 individual medley," he said. "As his swimming career develops, we can expect to see his name in writing many more times and we are proud that he is representing Lake Placid High School."
Greg Rawlings, senior, Sebring Rawlings capped off a solid career with the Blue Streaks with a pair of regional appearances. He competed on Sebring's 200 medley relay team that placed third at districts and also finished sixth in the 100 breaststroke.
Dalton Lambert, junior, Lake Placid Dalton Lambert has had some big shoes to follow and has done an impressive job for the Green Dragons.
"Dalton is the last of three Lamberts to dedicate themselves to the high school program and like his siblings before him, he is a strong force for this team and has carved his own path of accomplishments to brag about at home," Creel said.
Dalton competed in four events at regionals, making it twice as an individual and twice as a member of relay teams.
Davis Stephens, senior, Sebring Stephens was a key member of two Sebring relay teams that advanced to regionals, competing on the 200 medley relay team that placed third at districts and on the 200 freestyle relay team that placed fourth at districts and 13th at regionals.
Josh Gaidos, junior, Avon Park Gaidos had an all-around excellent season for the Rd Devils, advancing to regionals in both swimming and diving. He had a solid sixth-place finish in districts in the 500 freestyle, which advanced him to the regional meet.
Josh Zahn, junior, Lake Placid Zahn does whatever the team needs and advanced to regionals in the 100 breastroke and helped the Green Dragons' 200 medley relay team advance.
"When Josh enters the water he's going to give it everything he has to do his part for the team," Creel said. "He is a strong in the breaststroke and part of the strong link that lets our boys team be so dominating in our district."
Ty Johnson, junior, Sebring Johnson had a big year, as evidenced by his four berths to the regional meet. He competed in both the 50 and 100 freestyle as an individual and as a member of the Blue Streaks' 200 medley relay and 200 freestyle relay teams.
Clay Sapp, sophomore, Lake Placid Sapp's decision to concentrate on swimming this year paid off quite nicely, as the Green Dragon advanced to regionals in the 200 IM, 100 butterfly and in the 200 medley relay.
"Clay was our swimmer/diver last year and this year dedicated himself to swimming and swim he did, becoming one of our top butter flyers and individual medley swimmers," Creel said. "He is one of the key forces that allow us to bring home outstanding performances at our events."
Jomar Carrasquillo, sophomore, Sebring Carrasquillo was a beast for the Blue Streaks in the freestyle events, advancing to regionals in the 100 freestyle, the 200 freestyle and as a member of Sebring's 200 freestyle and 400 freestyle relay teams. Both relay teams scored points at the regional meet.
Efrain Herrera, junior, Lake Placid Herrera's return to the Green Dragons paid off quite nicely, as he enjoyed solid season for team, advancing to regionals in the 50 freestyle and helping the 200 medley relay team advance. He competed on the 400 freestyle relay team at regionals that placed 14th.
"Efrain swam with us his freshman year took a break and came back his third year with quite a bang, becoming one of the top three sprinters on the team," Creel said. "He was a welcome return with better-than-expected results."
Talon Bullard, senior, Sebring Bullard wound up his time with the Blue Streaks in fine fashion, as he advanced to regionals in the 200 freestyle and as a member of the Blue Streaks' 400 freestyle relay team. The relay team placed 14th in the regional meet.
Alex Miller, junior, Lake Placid Miller enjoyed a strong season for the Green Dragons, advancing to regionals in the 200 freestyle, 100 backstroke and as a member of Lake Placid's 200 freestyle relay team that placed sixth in the regional meet.
"Alex is one of our leaders on the team this and this year's co-captain," Creel said. "He is a key performer in all of his swim events, but also part of the talented leadership that allows our team to accomplish our many goals."
Jacob Livingston, junior, Sebring Livingston was strong in the butterfly for the Blue Streaks, placing sixth at the district meet and moving forward to the regional competition.
Lance Feagley, sophomore, Lake Placid Feagley showed his versatility this season, advancing to regionals in both swimming and diving. He placed eighth in the district meet in the 200 IM, which earned him a spot at regionals.
"Making the team as a swimmer and a diver and doing both sports can be rather challenging," Creel said. "But Lance has proved himself to be a fierce competitor, and always dug deep inside when it counted most to do his part to continue with the outstanding performances of the boys team, both swimming and diving."
Gary Gergen, junior, Avon Park Gergen has been a strong performer for the Red Devils in year's past and enjoyed a strong season once again. He placed third in the 100 breaststroke at districts, which earned him a spot in the regional meet.
Brock Yates, junior, Lake Placid Yates enjoyed a strong season for the Green Dragons, moving to regionals in both the 500 freestyle and the 100 butterfly.
"We're so proud to see Brock on the All-Highlands team this year," Creel said. "Brock has had to work very hard to accomplish his goals and this year's hard work paid off. He is an outstanding example of staying with it and continue to push until you accomplish all of your goals."
Tevin Bullard, freshman, Sebring Tevin Bullard enjoyed a strong rookie campaign for the Blue Streaks, advancing to regionals in the 100 butterfly and as a member of Sebring's 400 freestyle relay team.
Travis Peeples, sophomore, Lake Placid Peeples followed up a strong freshman season with an even better sophomore season, advancing to regionals in two individual events (50 free and 100 free) and as a member of the team's 200 freestyle and 400 freestyle relay teams. Peeples placed 11th at regionals in the 50 freestyle and both relay teams scored points for the Green Dragons.
Josh Copeland, junior, Sebring Copeland is a versatile swimmer for the Blue Streaks and advanced to regionals in three events. He moved forward in the 500 freestyle relay, the 100 butterfly and as a member of the team's 400 freestyle relay.
Travis Russell, freshman, Lake Placid Russell's freshman season was an impressive one for the Green Dragons, as he advanced to regionals in the 100 butterrfly.
"Travis, as a freshman swimmer, proved determined to improve his skills and give the team everything he had," Creel said. "Look for many great things ahead for this Lake Placid swimmer."
Brandon Skeens, junior, Lake Placid Skeens was a newcomer to the sport of swimming, but was a quick study and placed seventh at districts in the 100 breaststroke, earning him a spot in regionals.
"Brandon came to us as a junior never having swam before and this year he goes to regionals and makes the All-Highlands team," Creel said. "One can only wonder what we missed the two years he didn't swim and are excited about what is to come next year."
Coach of the Year: For guiding the Green Dragons' boys team to the district title, Lake Placid's Tom Creel is the Highlands Today All-Highlands Boys Swim Coach of the Year.
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