Santa Clara Aquamaids celebrates the 2018 season

The Santa Clara Aquamaids (SCA) are holding their Annual Banquet on November 4th 2018 to celebrate the 2018 amazing synchronized swimming season and athletes. This is the Aquamaids’ 64th banquet. Some of the most memorable moments for SCA were the Junior/Senior team taking Gold in Technical Team, Silver in Free Team and Combo at US National Senior Championships. Only two of our swimmers were Seniors at the time, this accomplishment shows the strength of Santa Clara Aquamaids. The Junior/Senior team also took Gold in all events (Team, Combo, Duet, and Solo) as well as Silver in Duet and Bronze in Solo at US National Junior and 13-15 Championships.

The 13-15 Team took Gold in all events (Team, Combo, Duet and Solo) at the same championships. A reconfigured 13-15 team took Gold in all events at Region B Championships and Silver in Team, Silver and Bronze in Duet and Gold in Solo at the  Junior Olympics. Our 11-12 Team took Gold at Region B Championships, and Silver in Team and Duet  at the Junior Olympics. The newest swimmers to synchronized swimming in SCA made their first statewide competition at the California State Game and became State Game Champion Team by winning Gold in Team, Trio, Duet and Solo.International Presence

This year was a year of unprecedented international travel and competition. Our athletes competed and visited France, Croatia, Russia and Greece. In Greece and at Hellas Beetles Open, Chris Carver, SCA Head Coach, Bill May, US Mixed Duet Swimmer, participated in a panel discussing future of the mixed duet.

During 2018, seven athletes in different age groups from the Santa Clara Aquamaids were selected to and competed with the USA National Team. Gianna Bonacorsco and Perry Daniels were part of the 12 and Under USA National Team. Yujin Chang, Emily Ding, Chiara Steele, and Marilyn Weaver were part of the 13-15 USA National Team. Nicole Goot was part of the USA Junior National Team.

Graduating Athletes

This year, six SCA athletes graduated and moved on to college. We wish all our graduating athletes best of luck in college. We looking forward to see them succeed in and out of the pool! The Santa Clara Aquamaids graduating athletes are:

Camryn Carrasco

Camryn have been a Santa Clara Aquamaid for 5 years. As an Aquamaid, she has won Gold in Team and Combo at West Zone Championships and US National Championships every year from 2014 through 2018. She finished in third place as a soloist at every National Championship in which she participated. Internationally, she placed third with the US National Team in Comen Cup in Greece 2014 and first in duet with Nikki Dzurko at the Primorje Synchro Cup in Croatia 2018. She won Jerry Smith Award for outstanding sportsmanship in 2016.  Camryn’s proudest moment as an Aquamaid was at the 2017 US National Junior Championships, when in the finals one of our swimmers got hurt during the routine and had to be taken out. The team had to swim the routine again with only seven swimmers. The team was upset that one of seniors could not swim. Swimming without a teammate is hard since routines are designed for eight swimmers. The teammed pulled together and reconfigured the routine with only seven swimmers within only 10 minutes and still swam to their best ability and won Gold. To Camryn, that team represented the true spirit of Santa Clara Aquamaids. This event was documented in Episode 4 of Synchro Sisters by the Olympic Channel. Camryn now attends Ohio State University and swims for the Ohio State Buckeye. Camryn’s mother, Heather Carrasco is a Gold medalist from the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. She is a currently a highly decorated member of the Santa Clara Aquamaids coaching staff.

Kate Chow

Kate joined the Santa Clara Aquamaid family at age 9 and has swam in the competitive program for 8 years. She has been a member of several National Championship Teams and US National Teams, and has represented the United States in international competitions at the UANA Pan American Championships. In 2018, she received the Individual High Point Award at the US Senior National Championships. This award goes to the individual swimmer receiving the overall highest score. Throughout her synchro career, Kate has introduced young swimmers to synchro through the “try-it” and summer camp programs. She has been a mentor, coach, leader, and friend to many of the younger Aquamaids. Her proudest moment as an Aquamaid was competing in her final National Championship with the girls she began synchro with 8 years earlier and reflecting on the times they shared together — all the practices, meets, airports, flights, travel, hotel rooms, meals, storms, cold pools, early mornings, knox, injuries, disappointments and victories — and the ensuing friendships that developed from being a part of the Aquamaid family. Kate is currently pursuing a double major in Human Biology and Economics at UCLA. She has accepted a four year internship with UCLA’s Children’s Health Center.

Nikki Dzurko

Nikki started swimming with the Santa Clara Aquamaids in 2010. As an Aquamaid, Nikki has won a total of 25 USA National Championship titles, in all events Solo, duet, team, combo team and figures, and 12 International Gold medals across all events. She is the most decorated National Champion in the US in age group. Nikki has represented the US at two World Championships; as a soloist at 2016 IAAF World Junior Championships in Kazan, Russia; and as a member of USA National Team at 2017 World Aquatics Championships in Budapest, Hungary. Nikki’s proudest moment as an Aquamaid was when the SCA team need to regroup at 2017 Junior National Championships in Arizona after one of the swimmers in final swim got injured during a swim and routine had to be stopped. They had to re-swim minutes latter without teammate and they still became National Junior Champions! Nikki attends Ohio State University and swims for the Ohio State Buckeye. She graduated from Los Gatos High school 2018.

Emily Lu

Emily will receive a plaque commemorating 10 years of membership with the Santa Clara Aquamaids. This plaque represents an entire decade of commitment and perseverance. As an equally dedicated student, Emily has managed to compete both nationally and internationally as part of the Aquamaids and also as a member of the USA National Team. Despite these tangible achievements, her intangible qualities are impressive and truly makes her stand above the pack. She is a reliable teammate and friend to all of her peers. Emily never hesitates to lend a helping hand whether it is with schoolwork or with pool work. She has helped SCA with the training of our younger swimmers and is able to balance all this with a myriad of volunteer activities including her altruistic work with underdeveloped countries. Emily is currently studying at the University of California, Berkeley, where is is majoring in electrical engineering.

Alexandra Suarez

Alex was only with the Santa Clara Aquamaids for 1 year, but she wishes it could have been longer. Before joining SCA, Alex was an accomplished swimmer from San Dieguito Synchro and a member of USA Synchro National Team 2016-2017.  Alex’ major accomplishment while swimming with SCA was getting to practice! She flew from San Diego almost every weekend to attend Friday and Saturday practices in Santa Clara and San Jose. Her proudest moment was walking out with her teammates to receive her first gold medal at US National Championships. Alexandra is attending Stanford University this year and swimming for their synchronized swim team.

Sabrina Walsh

Sabrina greatly enjoyed her past seven years swimming and competing with the Santa Clara Aquamaids. Highlights of her synchronized swimming career include being a member of the 2016 Junior National Team 2 and competing at the UANA Pan American Championships in Puerto Rico, where the team brought home a silver medal.  She won Gold in Junior Duet and Bronze in Figures at Synchro America Open 2017. At the 2018 Senior Nationals, her SCA team won first place in Free, Technical Team and Combo. Sabrina was the recipient of 2016 Marge Reeves Award, a Santa Clara Aquamaids award given to athlete with most potential in synchronized swimming.  Her best memories as an Aquamaid are her time with her teammates during practices and competitions. Sabrina’s passion and determination to strive to do her best both academically and athletically earned her a spot on the synchronized swimming team at Stanford University where she continues to balance between the highest level of academics and her synchro career.  She hopes to study in the field of medicine where she can help make a difference in the community and society.