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The latest in Indiana Water Skier Recognition follows. I hope this one puts a smile on everyone's face when reading!
This week's featured water skier is Hudson McCullough. Hudson started his passion for skiing at the tender age of 9 months on a Zip Sled in the Heritage Lake Ski Parade! Skiing on 2 skis was accomplished at 3 years and on a slalom at 5 years! He started competing on the slalom course at 6 and skied his first tournament at his home site Kodiak Lake. Hudson skied in the 2020 Indiana State Championships held at Hawthorn Lake and, I believe the September Champion Lake event. Hudson has many fans and one of his many highlights included being taught to barefoot by Cale Burdick and Nate Smith. Hudson enjoys baseball when he is not on the water. Keep skiing Hudson!
This week's IWSA Water Skier Recognition award goes to Samantha Hoops. Samantha completed a noteworthy 2020 experience. Samantha has skied in the Indiana State Tournaments since she was 8 years old! The 2020 Indiana State tournament, although unique, was one she is very proud of. She earned 1st in jump, 1st in trick, 2nd in slalom, and 1st overall. She also set the state overall record for girls 3. At the Mastercraft Midwest Regionals, she placed 2nd in jump, 2nd in tricks, 2nd in slalom, and 1st Overall.
At the Goode Waterski Nationals in Louisiana, she placed 2nd in jump, 3rd in trick, 3rd in slalom, and 2nd Overall. In her spare time, she is quite proficient on the baseball field! Her favorite places to ski are Hawthorne Lake, Kodiak Lake, and at her home on Heritage Lake. Congratulations Samantha!
To all you interested parties out there......keep the skier recognition nominations coming! It's my goal to publish one article per week. Dave Jarrett
The second on our series of Water Skier Recognition sponsored by IWSA. We hope you enjoy.
Remember to send in information for your favorite IWSA water skier, worker, fan!
A most deserving candidate for recognition is Don Bucher. Don is the biggest supporter for the Sport of Waterskiing. He shares his love for the sport even when he is injured right before the big tournaments and unable to ski. He still travels miles to cheer his Indiana skiers on. Of course, he has to follow his grand children but is a supporter for all of our Indiana skiers. He is always the first person to volunteer to judge or work any event or tournament possible. Even when he is off the water, he is cheering each and everyone hoping they do their best! He truly loves sharing his passion for the sport. If you even say the word waterskiing to Don, he will talk hours with you about the sport!
We are pleased to report that we are beginning to receive replies to our IWSA Members Recognition request sent out last week. Keep 'em coming folks. We look forward to publishing interest articles about water skiers in Indiana!
Our first candidate is Jenna Gilbert from Ft. Wayne. Due to pharmacy residencies in Kansas City and Lexington KY, Jenna was essentially out of skiing in 2016 and 2017, and much of 2018. It was only last year that Jenna started hitting it again. But with a new job (with lots of hours) at Parkview Health Systems taking up a lot of her time, 2019 was more of a "recreational" skiing year for Jenna than a "competitive" one. Then, 2020 hit. Jenna set her goals with much hard work to regain her former skiing-self. Jenna skied and skied, studied and studied (technique) and simply never gave up on her quest to get back to Nationals. And with a 3rd place finish at Nationals, did she ever! Dedication, perseverance, and a super work ethic paid off! Unfortunately, water skiing is a sport where a 2-3 year "pause" often means "it's over." Jenna could have worked anywhere in the US, but she elected to come back to Ft. Wayne because her passion for water skiing was still burning hot. We're confident that Jenna could be a future IWSA leader. We all hope Jenna will continue her passion for water skiing and become more involved with IWSA.
Jenna Gilbert, dark blue top, 2nd from right
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