S.C. Special Olympics Athletes Depart

For USA games in Seattle

South Carolina Radio Network
June 29, 2018 - 10:54 am
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On Saturday, 166 athletes, coaches and unified partners board a jet bound for Seattle, Washington, to compete in the 2018 Special Olympics USA Games.

“This is really a big deal,” said Leigh Lowery, Special Olympics of South Carolina Director of Communications.

They’ll be competing against 4,000 athletes from across the country.

“They’ve been training for months on end for this,” Lowery said. “It really is a great culmination of their training and hard work where they get to compete on that national stage.”

“Our guys train really hard. It’s really a misconception that we’re a field day event,” she said. “Our delegates have been training for many months past their sport seasons.”

Lowery said the team from South Carolina is the third-largest in the nation. The host team of Washington has the largest number of participants while Florida is second.

“We are known for bringing as many people as we can pack on an airplane,” she said.

In addition to the Special Olympics experience, athletes get a chance to compete in some top-class venues at the University of Washingon and Seattle area.

“They’re getting these experiences that most amateur athletes don’t get to have. And they get to experience being a rock star for the week,” she said.

Many of the events will be broadcast on ESPN and its affiliated networks. Click here for coverage information.

“It really lends itself to the credibility of our sports competitions and the training that our athletes and partners and unified coaches go through,” said Lowery.

The Opening Ceremonies will be broadcast live Sunday, July 1 on ABC at 3:30 p.m. Some athletes from South Carolina will be featured in the Opening Ceremonies.

“Our soccer team from Rock Hill, they will actually be participating in the Opening Ceremonies with speaking parts, welcoming the Special Olympics flag into Husky Stadium,” Lowery said.

The public is invited to send off the team Saturday morning at Eagle Aviation at Columbia Metropolitan Airport. The team leaves at 8 a.m. so well-wishers should arrive by 7:30. A welcome home event is being planned for when the team returns on July 7.

Click here for more information about Special Olympics South Carolina. 

Head of Delegation Kelly Garrick, Senior Director of Sports & Competition
Assistant Head of Delegation Kara Harmon, Director of Programs

Aquatics
Jesse Godsey, Taylors
Jonathan Griffin, Lexington
Emily Jose, Mount Pleasant
Kayla Mabry, Greer
Jason Morrow, Tryon
Emily Saverance, Rock Hill
Kathleen Stoller, Simpsonville
Max Wolff, Surfside

Coaches
Shelli Davis, Mount Pleasant
Scott Wentzky, Rock Hill

Basketball (Unified)
Courtney Armstrong, Greenville
Rick Green, Greenville
Walker Griffith, Unified Partner, Greenville
Austin Hester, Unified Partner, Greenville
Jacob Ingram, Greenville
Whitney Trexler, Unified Partner, Greenville
Josh Wall, Unified Partner, Greenville
Zach Ward, Greenville
Lucas Ward, Unified Partner, Greenville
Jon Wesley Barber, Greenville

Coaches
Brittany Bynum, Greenville
Lara Ceisel, Greenville

Bocce (Singles) Bocce (Unified)
Marcus Crowder, Easley Lizbet Cruz (A) and Sara Lackey, Swansea (P)
Lizbet Cruz, Gaston Jason Hames (A) and Tawana Rice, Clinton (P)
Lillian Elmore, Orangeburg Adriana Lyles (A) and Anthony Lyles, Camden (P)
Jason Hames, Clinton Diane Valenza (A) and Thomas Valenza, York (P)
Adriana Lyles, Camden Donnie Price (A) and Valerie Rice, Clinton (P)
Becky Keith, Iva
Bruce Osborne, Williamston
Maya Patterson,
Tyler Poole, Easley
Donnie Price, Clinton
Valerie Rice, Clinton
Diane Valenza, York

Coaches
Lesley Aycock, Spartanburg
Bob Holcombe, Anderson
Denise Satterfield, Clover
Shelby Thomas, Clinton

Bowling (Singles)
Joe Boggs, Inman
Kekola Boyd, Newberry
Nicole Brock, Anderson
Davontae Brown, West Columbia
Tina Cook, Rock Hill
Tammy Darcy, Boiling Springs
Abraham Dendy, Clinton
Meredith Farich, Columbia
Kathy Gilmore, Clinton
Courtney Hampton, Swansea
Ansley Hayes, Liberty
Shawn Mock, Aiken
Sean Montion, Anderson
Audrey Olson, Gaston
Mathieu Rocca, Bluffton
Andrew Storey, Hilton Head Island
Willie White, Aiken

Bowling (Unified)
Mathieu Rocca (A) and Colette Rocca (P), Bluffton
Kathy Gilmore (A) and Ann Grady (P), Clinton
Andrew Storey (A) and Greg Storey (P), Hilton Head Island
Davontae Brown (A) and Faye Hicks (P), West Columbia
Willie White (A) and Dennis Richardson (P), Aiken

Coaches
Patti Myers, Rock Hill; Nicole Cartwright, Easley; Allyson Panzino, Simpsonville; Mark Beck, Inman
Mary Kennedy, Lexington; Kurt Wyndham, North; Dennis Richardson, Aiken

Flag Football (Unified)
Matthew Cox, West Columbia
Emilee Fertick, West Columbia
Oko Gogo, West Columbia
Lucas Kirby, West Columbia
Dominique Richardson, West Columbia
Dione Richardson, West Columbia
Josh Salley, West Columbia
Carlee Vella, West Columbia
Domnil Williams, West Columbia

Coaches
Richard Gardner, West Columbia
Queen James, West Columbia

Golf (Singles)
Chris Conant, Mount Pleasant
Jennifer Corley, Charleston
Andrew Johnson, Whitmire
Jessica Johnson, Georgetown
Scott Rohrer, York

Coaches
Jeff Rohrer, York
Summer Altman, Pawleys Island
Perry Cummings, Charleston

Caddies
Elizabeth Rohrer, York

Golf (Unified)
Chris Conant (A) and Ansley Pridemore, Mount Pleasant
Andrew Johnson (A) and Todd Johnson (P), Whitmire
Jennifer Corley (A) and TJ Trimeloni (P), Charleston

Gymnastics
Krystal Gross, Newberry
Alaina Johnson, Greenville
Michelle Melton, Easley
Alexa Myers, Lexington
Micah Randall, Spartanburg

Coaches
Virginia Cassell, Pickens
Emily House, Pomaria

Powerlifting
Brian Pittman, Rock Hill
Tyler Chambers, Swansea

Coach
Eric Hubbs, Rock Hill

Soccer (Traditional)
Katie Beck, Hanahan
Josh Bellamy, Cottageville
Travis Dearing, Summerville
Luke Dumouchel, North Charleston
Timerick Footman, Lincolnville
Terrell Holmes, Summerville
Stephanie Miller, Summerville
Megan Queen, Summerville
Anna Stonesifer, Isle of Palms
Adam Welch, Summerville

Coaches
Phil Dumouchel, North Charleston
April Ramirez, North Charleston

Soccer (Unified)
Teresa Boehme, Rock Hill
Jason Elkins, Rock Hill
Grant Field (P), Rock Hill
Jillian Garrity (P), Rock Hill
Jonathan Hemphill, Rock Hill
Kaitlyn Marr (P), Rock Hill
Danielle Maurer, Rock Hill
Rickey McClure, Rock Hill
Ian McKeown (P), Rock Hill
Tommy Mitchum, Rock Hill
Josh Myers, Rock Hill
Alan Parks (P), Rock Hill

Coaches (Unified): Kathy Covington, Rock Hill; David McKeown, Rock Hill; Garnet McKeown, Rock Hill

Stand Up Paddleboard
Maddie Haag, Cayce
Kaitlin Lawrence, Irmo
Kenny Manigo, Elgin
Cameron Miller, Lexington

Coach
Rachel Maxwell, Lexington

Tennis (Singles)
Chris Arnott, Bluffton
William Dennington, Bluffton
Kristin Locatelli, Lexington
Maya Perry, Johns Island
Giri Rajagopalan, Charleston
Anna Stewart, Graniteville
Tennis (Unified)
Alyssa Bacher (A) and Susan Simmons (P), Summerville
Matthew Legons (A) and Carl Rapp (P), Aiken
Erin Coats (A) and Nadene Coats (P), Lexington

Coaches
Nanette Howerin, Columbia
Kathy Cramer, Bluffton
Kevin MacFarland, Mount Pleasant

Track & Field
Paul Blanton, Summerville
James Boyter, Laurens
Jamal Briggs, Laurens
Angela Etheridge, Summerville
Michelle Godfrey, Effingham
Lavorne Powers, Laurens

Coaches
Larry Williams, Enoree
Kayla Haymes, Gray Court

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