When the Student Athlete of the Year awards were announced few, if any, were surprised that Rosie Poling and Tyler Gresham were chosen at the Marco Island Charter Middle School annual Student-Athlete Awards Night on Thursday at the school.
Both good students, Poling dominated in cross country and track. Gresham dominated whatever sport he played.
Before the closing announcement Poling won the top student-athlete award in cross country and track. She led the girls track team to a Collier County Track & Field Championship.
Gresham won for volleyball and football, but could have easily won for basketball. He led the football team to a Gulf Coast Athletic Conference Championship and the basketball team battled to second place in the Collier County Middle School Basketball Championship.
“It’s been an amazing three years, I have no words to explain how I feel,” Poling said. “I never thought I would do something like this.”
Gresham was very emotional upon receiving the award.
“It is hard to talk about it,” he said, fighting back tears. “I have known my coaches for a long time and this award means a lot.”
Athletic director Roger Raymond said of Poling: “There are only a few times that a student has such an influence on those around her, including her coaches. Because of her work ethic our programs have produced some equally outstanding athletes because she drove them to perform.”
Raymond said of Gresham: “This young man has represented our school and on the athletic field at a high level. He will succeed in life because he is not afraid to make a move to be involved.”
Bailey Greaves and Josh Wagner won the Michael “Mickey” Mendel Sportsmanship Award, presented by the late Mendel’s children, Cody and Casey.
The boys cross country team added a championship banner in 2012, led by Wagner, who was named the top student-athlete in that sport.
Other winners included: Hunter O’Neill, coed golf, Justin Pham, coed tennis, Marissa Mengelkoch, cheerleading, Matt DeSantis, boys soccer, Riley Burke, girls soccer, Gresham and Katie Moss, volleyball, Poling and Santiago Ruiz, track, Matt Estrada and April Alvarado, basketball.
Sixth grade awards went to Mary Vale and Richard Reisinger, basketball and Morgan Broxson, volleyball.