At Mount Vernon, students are encouraged to explore their curiosities, discover their passions and choose courage over comfort. Several athletes have taken this to heart as they compete on non-Mount Vernon teams in our area.
Patrick Casey, Class of 2020, saw a flier posted at his neighborhood pool that was advertising team sign-ups for water polo – at another pool. As an eighth grader, he had been on the swim team since he could walk. Curiosity got the best of him and he decided to try out, alone, and by himself. He made the team and as he says, “suffered” through the first year. He was the only one from Mount Vernon and all of his co-ed teammates already knew each other. Not only was he forging new friendships and navigating a different group of high school students, he was learning a new sport. A very demanding one, at that. One that combines the skills needed for basketball, handball, and soccer.
Patrick shares, “That first year was tough. I went in knowing no one, but I worked hard on the sport and getting to know the people, growing into both.”
He became a better swimmer because he was more conditioned. Now, since his love for water polo has become his focus, he continues to swim on the swim team, to be a better polo player.
After two years on the team, wanting to share his love for the sport, Patrick reached out to his friend August Durlacher, Class of 2020, to join the team. August shares, “ Everyone was so welcoming and friendly. They all taught me how to be better. All of the team members are so encouraging. The older ones know that when they leave, our age group will be the leaders of the team, so they want to ensure they leave a legacy, as will we.”
Both Patrick and August agree that playing on a team outside of Mount Vernon can be a positive experience. Patrick would encourage others to do so, “I know it may be uncomfortable, but it’s good to get out of your comfort zone. It’s a life lesson – get used to doing something like this, because you’ll be facing new environments all your life.”
The team made it to the state tournament this season, earning the third place title (out of 14) after a heartbreaking loss by one point during the final.
Patrick Casey, Class of 2020
August Durlacher, Class of 2020
Evan Bell, Class of 2021
North Springs Spartans Water Polo Club Team.
Mount Vernon’s Nick Schab Medals with Racing Wins at Music City Regatta
Nick Schab, Class of 2020, brought home gold and bronze medals in a premier regatta as Atlanta Junior Rowing launched their fall season with big wins in Nashville’s Music City Head Race.
Racing in the Men’s Varsity category, Schab competed in events, both 4-man boats and 8-man boats, in races that included 23 rowing teams from the South and MidAtlantic areas. Schab’s boats placed first and third, respectively. Atlanta’s largest youth rowing team brought home 16 medals including 7 golds.