Rockford men’s water polo fields 10 Academic All Americans

Pictured are (front row, l–r) Rockford Athletic Director Tim Erickson, Mike Arend, Cody Brown, Allyn Kinney, Alex Savage, Rockford Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Michael Shibler; (back) Grant Beach, Nick Dulak, Corey Fase, Mac Finnie, Nick Willison. Not pictured is Eric Chisholm.

The Rockford men’s water polo team excels in the classroom as well as in the pool. Rockford Public Schools is honored to announce that 10 team members have been selected as Academic All Americans for the 2010-2011 school year.

Dan Zang, Rockford High School principal, stated, “We are very proud of these fine young men and this very prestigious recognition. We wish them continued success in polo and so appreciate their commitment to excellence in the classroom.”

To qualify for this honor, the selectees must have participated in a national water polo event. The Rockford Aquatic Club traveled to California this past summer to compete against teams from around the United States in the Water Polo Junior Olympics. Nominees must carry a minimum 3.6 GPA.

Water polo coach Dave McWatters is very proud of the 10 students. “These young men represent the best of the Rockford student-athlete: succeeding in the classroom and in athletic competition. They are great role models for younger kids who want to accomplish great things both academically and athletically.”

Gaining the honors are seniors Cody Brown, Eric Chisholm, Nick Dulak, Mac Finnie, Allyn Kinney and Alex Savage. Juniors honored are Mike Arend, Grant Beach, Corey Fase and Nick Willison. Further recognition goes to Arend, Beach, Dulak, Finnie, Kinney and Willison, who made “outstanding” recognition, which is carrying a GPA above 4.0. The water polo team has currently compiled a 19-1 record and is a model program in the state of Michigan.

Superintendent of Rockford Public Schools Dr. Michael Shibler congratulates the team on their success and the 10 academic honorees. “The Rockford High School men’s water polo program is considered one of the most successful in the state of Michigan, if not the Midwest. This is because of our outstanding coaches, parent support, and our student-athletes, who excel in the classroom and in the pool. Without hesitation, I believe our men’s water polo program to be a ‘point of pride’ for the Rockford community.”

Following are the plans of the senior recipients:

• Cody Brown expects to attend Grand Rapids Community College for pre-med.

• Eric Chisholm expects to attend Mercyhurst in Pennsylvania to study criminal justice.

• Nick Dulak expects to attend Michigan Tech University to pursue engineering.

• Mac Finnie is leaning toward the University of Chicago and is undecided as to a career path.

• Allyn Kinney expects to attend Pomona College or Vanderbilt University to pursue neuroscience.

• Alex Savage expects to attend Miami of Ohio to study secondary education and hopes to coach water polo.

Rockford Athletic Director Tim Erickson is certainly pleased to see the achievements in the class room. “We are extremely proud of our water polo athletes and coaching staff. Over 50 percent of our students participate on our athletic teams. There is a direct correlation between athletic participation and success in the classroom. Our men’s water polo team is a prodigious example of that success.”

For more information, please contact Erickson at (616) 863-6040 or Zang at (616) 863-6030.

About Squire News

The Squire has been Rockford’s free weekly newspaper since 1871. Our loyal readership includes over fifteen thousand homes in the Rockford area, including the affluent Lakes area of Lake Bella Vista, Bostwick Lake and Silver Lake; Belmont, Blythefield, as well as Algoma, Courtland, Cannon and Plainfield Townships. The Squire is distributed through the U.S. Post Office every Thursday. We also deliver to in-town businesses and homes with paper carriers and news stands in our grocery stores and over thirty local shops.
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