Over the past two-plus decades, Jesuit swimming has developed from a local power to a regional power to, now, a state power.
In 2017, Jesuit captured the first swimming State Championship by a Hillsborough County School in 71 years. On Saturday (Nov. 3), the Tigers will begin their quest for back-to-back State titles at the District Meet at the Academy of the Holy Names.
Under head coach Bill Shaffer, Jesuit has won 21 consecutive District titles. After the District Meet, the Tigers will take aim at their 10th consecutive Region title, on Nov. 10 at North Shore Aquatics in St. Petersburg.
The Class 2A State Meet is Nov. 17 at Sailfish Splash Waterpark and Aquatics Center. Only two Jesuit sports teams – soccer, which captured three straight state titles in 1997-98-99, and cross country in 2004-05 – have earned consecutive State titles.
Leading the way for Jesuit is the 10-swimmer senior class pictured below, L-R: Patrick Close, Robbie Shaffer, Connor Close, Reece Tappan, Jack Stanislow, Alex Caceres, Rodrigo Garcia-Gil, Tyler Petitt, Tyler Carreja, and Brendan Driscoll.
The seniors have helped Jesuit to an amazing 4-year run at State: runner-up in 2014 and '15, 3rd place in 2016, and the breakthrough State title in 2017.
Six of the seniors scored points at State last year: Caceres, Carreja, Driscoll, Petitt, Shaffer, and Stanislow, with Driscoll winning the individual State title in the 500 freestyle and earning Hillsborough County Swimmer of the Year honors.