The Rancho Santa Fe school district has long prided itself on providing its students with the opportunity to participate in a variety of academically rigorous programs and activities. From winning robotic competitions to attending the very much educational, yet fun Pali Institute for a weeklong camp experience, the students have covered some impressive ground.
Even more remarkable, however, is just how well-rounded some of these kids are. In sports, Rancho Santa Fe students also shine, and they have obtained quite a few awards in the recent months to prove it.
Last month, a total of 25 teams from California and Arizona attended a three-day Annual Winter Age Group Swimming Championship on Coronado Island. About 800 swimmers competed, including Rancho Santa Fe Students Drew Schmidt (7th grade), Daniel Hotson (7th grade), Revere Schmidt (4th grade), and Audrey Schafer (4th grade). They all attend Horizon Prep, a private school located in Rancho Santa Fe that boasts other athletic programs as well, including soccer and basketball.
Siblings Drew and Revere Schmidt certainly made their school proud. Drew had top 8 finishes in seven of his nine events, including a 3rd and two 4th place finishes. The points he earned from these events ranked him 6th amongst the rest of the boys in the 11/12 year old age group.
Revere as well had top 8 finishes in five of her nine events. She is ranked 8th in overall points among the 50 or so 10 and under girls.
These rankings were enough to get both Drew and Revere selected to represent San Diego County in the annual All-Star Competition to be held in Roseville, California. Only eight girls and eight boys were selected from each age group. The team will be competing head-to-head against the Sierra Nevada All-Star team.
In other sports news, Rancho Santa Fe’s nine-year old Andrew Salu won the Little Mo Grand Slam. As the top 9-year old player in the country, he was awarded with a giant, 6-foot tall trophy, a symbol worthy of his recent accomplishments. “It’s bigger than me. It’s bigger than my dad,” Andrew said.
Andrew won four tournaments in San Diego, Texas, New York and Florida to achieve the Grand Slam. He received his trophy in Palms Beach Gardens, Florida on December 10th after competing against the #1-ranked 10 and under player from Germany in the finals. It was his toughest game.
Andrew was first introduced to the sport by his father, Eran. After testing out baseball, soccer and basketball, Andrew decided tennis was his favorite at the age of 6 and a half. “It was the most fun. The competitiveness makes it the most fun,” said Andrew.
He currently resides in Rancho Santa Fe neighborhood Fairbanks Ranch and practices almost everyday with Coach Derek Miller at the Rancho Santa Fe Tennis Club.
Looking to the year ahead, Andrew’s goals include getting into the top 50 nationally in the USTA. He’s currently 419th. Andrew also said he would like to reach the top 10 in the SCTA under-12 division, continue to do well in tournaments and practice hard.