Kelsey Gouge - FSC Swimming vs. Bridgeport (Jan. 5, 2013)
Kelsey Gouge's first Sunshine State Conference Swimming Championships appearance last weekend was a memorable one.
The Florida Southern freshman and Brookwood grad won a pair of individual titles and tied for the meet's high point award, helping her team to a third-place finish and leading a strong performance at the meet by former Gwinnett standouts.
Gouge set a new meet record in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 23.32 seconds and also was first in the 100 free with a time of 50.89. She also was runner-up in the 100 breaststroke in 1:03.41, which established a new school record.
She swam on a pair of conference championship relays, the 200 medley (1:44.53) and the 400 medley (3:47.50), joining Mill Creek grad Stephanie Doran on the latter relay. Doran, a senior at Florida Southern, also had a strong meet individually with high finishes in the 100 backstroke (second, 57.12), 50 free (third, 23.65) and 200 back (2:04.47).
Fellow Mill Creek grads and sisters Sara and Samantha Akoubian, juniors at Nova Southeastern, also had multiple top-five finishes. Sara was third in both the 1,000 free (10:20.21) and 1,650 free (17:12.14), while Samantha was fourth in the 200 individual medley (2:08.18) and fifth in the 100 breast (1:06.35).
The Florida Southern men's team won its first-ever Sunshine State title with the efforts of Gwinnett grads Stephen Swan, Robbie Swan and Thomas Nguyen of Brookwood and Bruce Janzen of Collins Hill.
Stephen Swan, a senior, was runner-up in the 100 free (45.11), fourth in the 200 free (1:39.62) and swam on an 800 free relay team that broke the meet record in 6:33.37. Robbie Swan, a junior, was third in the 100 free (45.44), fifth in the 50 free (20.84) and joined Janzen, a senior, on a first-place 400 medley relay.
Nguyen, a junior, had a pair of third-place finishes in the 100 back (49.94) and 200 back (1:46.68).
In the men's meet, Mill Creek grad Kevin Doran, a senior at Tampa, had a pair of top-five finishes. He was third in the 100 breast (55.90) and fourth in the 200 breast (2:06.50).
The Gwinnett standouts are in preparation for the NCAA Division II National Championships, which begin March 6 in Birmingham.
Buck gets another league honor
Collins Hill's Reed Buck, who plays for the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, earned his third Landmark Conference player of the week award this season on Monday.
Buck averaged 22 points in two Mariner victories the previous week.
Alverson leads win over Tide
Buford grad Blanche Alverson had a huge game in her final regular-season game against rival Alabama, leading Auburn to a 70-53 home win last weekend.
The senior had team highs of 22 points, 11 rebounds and six assists, making 7 of 13 field goals and 5 of 6 free throws.
"This could be the last time I play Alabama so it definitely meant a lot more," Alverson said afterward. "I definitely wanted to put the team on my shoulders and get out to a good start."
Wiedeman has another big game
Greater Atlanta Christian's Trent Wiedeman had 16 points and 10 rebounds in 20 minutes off the bench Wednesday night in College of Charleston's 67-65 win over Western Carolina.
Wiedeman, finally back to 100 percent health after ankle injuries earlier in the season, made 7 of 10 field goals and both free-throw attempts.
Hunt wins NAIA East Region
Dacula grad Zeke Hunt, a wrestler at Cumberland College, won the NAIA East Region qualifier last weekend in Laurinburg, N.C.
Hunt swept through the 174-pound bracket and earned a spot in the NAIA National Championships, which are March 1-2 in Des Moines, Iowa. He won his first two matches by pin, his third by majority decision and his final match 7-4 over Indiana Tech's Tanner Martin.
Estep earns Conference USA award
Southern Miss' Zach Estep, a Peachtree Ridge grad, was named the Conference USA men's golfer of the week on Wednesday after his showing at the Mobile Bay Intercollegiate, the first tourney of his spring season.
The junior tied for fifth at the Mobile tourney with rounds of 74, 68 and 75. The 68 was the event's low round and his 11 total birdies ranked second among the field.
Estep's 74.33 career stroke average in fifth in Southern Miss history.
Squeglia returns with strong outing
Georgia State senior Nick Squeglia, in his second start coming off Tommy John surgery, took a no-hitter into the sixth inning Thursday against Alabama A&M.
Squeglia earned the victory and finished with a career-best eight strikeouts, allowing just one single in his six innings.
"We played very well today, and it all started with our starting pitcher, Nick Squeglia, and the outstanding performance he gave us," GSU head coach Greg Frady said.
Gwinnett Grads is a column that runs on Saturdays spotlighting achievements of past Gwinnett standouts. Coaches and parents are urged to send suggestions via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.