In 2012, the King Philip Warriors' success in athletics continued as student-athletes from KP won state titles, broke state records, earned national recognition, and even committed to play sports at Division 1 schools. With the year coming to an end, Wrentham Patch looks back, in no particular order, at 10 of the best moments from the KP Warriors this year.
1. Jake Layman goes to Brazil and Maryland
After his high school career ended in March, KP basketball standout and current Maryland freshman Jake Layman had one more assignment before college. the Wrentham resident had the chance to play for Florida Gators men's basketball coach Billy Donovan and added a gold medal to his trophy case.
2. KP Swimmer Break 100 Backstroke Record
It was only a year earlier that KP swimmer and current UNC Tar Heel Pat Myers was named an All-American in swimming after breaking the state record in the 100 meter backstroke. While the record remains at King Philip, it now belongs to Aaron Gustafson who broke the record en route to winning the Division 1 state title in the event with a time of 49.24. Gustafson was named an All-American and also placed second in the 50 freestyle at the state meet.
Gustafson is now swimming at The University of Texas.
3. Ruffin Wins Sprint Titles at State Meet
Anyone who saw Charles Ruffin on the football field could tell you that his speed would easily transition over to the track. At the MIAA All-State Championship for indoor track, Ruffin took the 55 meter championship with a school-record time of 6.43 and the 100 meter title at the outdoor All-State meet with a time of 10.75. Earlier in the year, Ruffin broke the school record in the 100 meter dash (10.5) and the 200 meter dash (21.9)
4. Football Goes 10-1, Best Record in School History
Despite losing some key seniors, the football team achieved their best record in school history at 10-1.
The season was capped off with two come from behind victories against North Attleboro and Franklin in the final games of the season. Beating the Red Rocketeers with seconds to go, it was a field goal by freshmen Derek Roschlein that gave the Warriors the win.
Driving down the field, the Warriors took the victory with a four yard pitch to Joe Johnston for the winning touchdown.
Despite the record, the Warriors' season ended on Thanksgiving as their lone loss to Mansfield was enough to give the Hornets the edge in the divisional tiebreaker and send Mansfield to the post-season. With the new tournament format set for 2013, the Warriors will no longer have to worry about a similar situation ending their season.
5. Another year, Another League Title for Softball
Led by pitcher Meg Rico, the Warriors once again captured the Hockomock League title in softball in 2012. With hard to hit pitching and excellent base-running, the Warriors were once again the top team in the competitive Kelley-Rex Division of the Hock. While their season ended with a loss in the Division 2 South Sectional Finals, KP looks to once agan be one of the state's best programs in 2013.
6. Two From KP Softball Commit to Division 1 Schools
Speaking of softball, two KP seniors will play Division 1 softball starting in the spring of 2014. Seniors Tori Constantin and Anna O'Neill both signed letters of intent to play for Central Connecticut and Mercer. Constantin was one of the best hitters in the Hockomock League last season and O'Neill spent most of her time at first base despite being a pitcher. O'Neill is expected to see more time in the pitcher's circle in the upcoming season.
7. Volleyball Make it to the Sectional Finals
With a record of 6-12 in 2011, King Philip was not a favorite to play for a championship in 2012. Yet the team surprised everyone with a run to the Division 1 Central-East Sectional Finals. Although they lost to a strong Newton North team, the Warriors made their school proud with their improbable season.
8. Logan David Wins 120lbs Title at Division 2 Wrestling Championship
He may of only gotten a point in the final round, but it was all Logan David needed for the state championship three-peat. After cruising to the final round of the 120 pound tournament, David defeated Central Catholic's Pat Lacroix 1-0 to earn his third state championship.
David is still wrestling, competing for the Cornell University wrestling team.
9. Chris Allen Becomes the Best Distance Runner in KP History
On the track, 2012 was the year of Chris Allen as the distance runner broke the school record in the indoor mile (4:21.46), indoor two-mile (9:30.81), 800 meter run (1:56.6), outdoor mile (4:16.04), and outdoor two-mile (9:08.08).
After graduating from King Philip, Allen took his talents to Harvard where he competes as a member of the Crimson track and field team.
10. The Nassons Take the Podium at the State Swim Meet
The sister duo of Stephanie and Sydney Nasson dominated the Hockomock League during the 2011-12 swim season and both took to the podium at the Division 1 state meet. In both events, Stephanie took first and Sydney took third.
This season, Stephanie will be swimming for Boston University while Sydney has qualified for six events at the state meet after only three meets.
Honorable Mention: KP Youth Lacrosse U15s Win State Title