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All-American Swimmers Named From Bob Jones Swim Team

MADISON– Always regarded as one of the top high school swim programs in Alabama is now receiving national recognition. The Bob Jones swim team has had two of its swimmers earn All-American honors from the National Interscholastic Swim Coaches Association (NISCA).

Rising senior Riley Groves and upcoming junior Samantha Chan each have been named All-Americans for their outstanding posted times during last season’s swim season.

“I am happy to see these two recognized for their hard work and fast swimming,” said Wade Thaxton Bob Jones head coach. “Both return this upcoming season and were obviously an important part of our team last year.”

The Patriots took state runner-up in both boys and girls at the AHSAA State Swim Meet. Both Groves and Chan posted their All-American times at the State Meet and those marks were among the top 100 in the U.S., thus elevating them to the status of All-American.

Groves posted a 49.18 in the 100 butterfly, which put in position No. 97 among the top 100, while Chan had her best at 55.00 also in the 100 butterfly event, which placed her No. 89.

“I was surprised I actually received the All-American honor and I’m very thankful to my coaches and parents who have helped me along the way,” said Chan who began swimming at age 6 with the Madison Dolphins at Dublin Memorial Park. “This honor gives me a lot of confidence going into our upcoming swim season. I work very hard and try my best in each practice and swim meet.”

Chan has a weighted grade point average of 5.1 and just began the recruiting process as she wants to swim in college and earn a scholarship.

“Sometimes I feel I’m at a disadvantage during a race as I’m usually shorter than the other swimmers,” added Chan, who stands 5-foot-3. At last year’s State Swim Meet, she won four medals. She took gold in the both 100 butterfly and 200 IM while picking up silver medals on relays teams that finished runner-up in the 200 medley and 400 freestyle.

Groves took home four silver medals at the season ending event last season. He took individual silver medals in both the 100 butterfly and 100 backstroke. As a member of a relay team, groves helped his squads take silvers in both the 400 freestyle and 200 medley.

“They are both perfect examples of being a leader in the pool and their work ethic and practice dedication does not go unnoticed by their teammates,” said Thaxton.

Groves was unavailable for comment.

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