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Athletes of The Week


Leading the way



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Clarkston Girls Swim Captains, from left Kathryn Culver, Natalie Vela, Sami Stelpflug, Sivhaun Sera and Jessica Moster. Photo by Wendi Reardon (click for larger version)
October 09, 2013 - When the Clarkston Girls Swim and Dive team beat Seaholm for the first time in Lady Wolves history on Sept. 17 senior captains Kathryn Culver, Jessica Moster, Sivhaun Sera, Sami Stelpflug and Natalie Vela helped to lead the way.

"It was really exciting for the girls team," Sera said.

"We stuck together and pulled out a win," said Stelpflug. " It proves we can't do this alone. We need the whole team to accomplish our goals."

"It gives us confidence," Culver added.

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The Lady Wolves are currently undefeated with a overall record 8-0 and 4-0 in the OAA Red.

"We have had a really great season," Sera smiled. "We have a lot of new divers this year who have been performing really well. There are a lot of new swimmers on the team, too."

The five help to lead a roster of over 30 - the most the team has ever had.

"It works because we work really well together," Sera said. "There is a captain for every five swimmers. There is a lot of strong leadership this year and we are all good at swimming."

"We have watched a lot of great leaders before us so it was exciting for us to step into the role," Vela smiled.

The five add over 40 years of experience of swimming to the team. Vela has 12 years of swimming experience while Sami started 11 years ago and Culver began 10 years ago. Moster has been diving since she was in seventh grade and competitive since she was eight. Sera has six years of experience.

All captains agree experience has helped to lead them to this point.

"It sets a good example," Stelpflug added. "All of the seniors work hard. We all get the feel of what it takes to represent Clarkston by working hard."

"It's not that easy to be up at five in the morning," Sera admitted. "But you tell new swimmers you have to work hard to win a state championship. As leaders we do a good job conveying that."

The Lady Wolves have two more league meets against Bloomfield United and Rochester Adams and hope to win the league championship.

See the team in action when they host Rochester Adams next Thursday at 6 p.m. for their last home meet of the season.

Wendi graduated from the University of Michigan-Flint with a degree in communications. She wrote for the Michigan Times college paper and Grand Blanc View before joining The Clarkston News in October 2007.
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