Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Swim Coach Medei Leaving St. Johns

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Swim Coach Medei Leaving St. Johns

Article excerpt

Byline: Stephen Kindland, Clay County Line sports writer

After lifting the St. Johns Country Day School swim teams into area prominence, coach Dan Medei is leaving the program he has headed for the past four years.

Medei, a 1999 University of Florida graduate who swam on two All-American relay teams, is moving back to Bethlehem, Pa., with his wife, Katie. Both are from Bethlehem, and the pair made a decision several months ago to move closer to their families.

Medei's replacement is Dale Porter of Lyndhurst, Ohio. Porter is an experienced coach, and was a scholarship swimmer at Cleveland State University in the mid-1980s.

"In all sincerity, I think he's going to do a great job," Medei said.

Medei, who dedicated the last four years of his life to building the boys and girls programs at the small, Class 2A school in Orange Park, says he doesn't want his departure to overshadow the recent accomplishments of a travel team he established last year.

While his girls team successfully defended its Clay County meet title last year and the boys team missed defending its title by a single point, Medei also was busy putting together the Spartan Aquatics Club travel team.

Starting with a small core group, he recruited swimmers from the Clay County area. The club now numbers 115, and went from an 11th-place finish in the 2003 River City Swim League championships to a sixth-place finish in the 19-team championships last weekend at The Bolles School.

Four of Medei's swimmers received High Points awards for their efforts. Tessa Bates, Ashley Neidigh, Hunter Shutt and Meghan Harris placed no worse than fifth in their respective age groups in the points race.

Bates earned fourth place in the 8-and-under girls division after winning the 50-meter freestyle and taking second and third in two other events. …

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