Kevin Llewallyn: Chattanoogan Senior Spotlight

Upcoming Series To Spotlight Local Prep Seniors

Sunday, March 22, 2020 - by Kevin Llewallyn
Kevin Llewallyn
Kevin Llewallyn

Tucked away in a scrapbook full of memories from my senior year of high school over 20 years ago is an article that was written about my high school track team. As a group, we finished as the state runner-ups in Class A, but what makes that article special to me is a small section that highlighted my race in the 1600-meter run at the region meet that qualified me for the Georgia High School state championships, something I had been working for my entire prep career.

 

I still remember my teammates, every single one of them, barreling down the hill to meet me as I crossed the finish line.

It is a moment that will forever be etched in my mind, sharing a moment with my best friends in a sport that is often viewed as individual competition. That article has since symbolized that moment and all the work that I had put into making it happen.

 

Now, two decades later, I am privileged to be the one telling those stories. My job, if you can call it that, is to highlight student-athletes and give them something they can keep and look back on with a smile when they remember the joys of playing high school sports.

 

Unfortunately, due to the unforeseen and unprecedented circumstances involving the COVID-19 pandemic, prep teams and athletes around the country have been forced to press the pause button on their seasons. In the Chattanooga area, spring sports were just getting started before the school systems decided to call a full timeout, leaving athletes, coaches, parents, and fans wondering if and when they would be able to resume play.

 

While most understand that this was absolutely the right call to make for the well-being of our nation, it doesn’t make it any less heart-breaking, particularly for the seniors. Many of these student-athletes have worked for years to excel at their craft, and are now struggling with the idea that the curtain might have closed on their high school careers without the final act or the curtain call.

 

COVID-19 and its effects on our society have taken over our televisions and social media newsfeeds, often in a much-needed way, as we all search for answers and try to stay up-to-date on what is going on with this virus and how to flatten the curve. While it is understandable to focus on what has been lost during this time, we at the Chattanoogan want to redirect some of the spotlight to these senior student-athletes and share their stories.

 

Starting tomorrow, we will begin a series called #ChattanooganSeniorSpotlight, where we will highlight one local prep team each day for as many days as we have responses. I have sent an e-mail to every athletic director in Hamilton County and Bradley County asking for their coaches to contact me in the hopes that we have the opportunity to highlight every group of seniors in the area.

 

If you are associated with a spring sports team in the Chattanooga area, please encourage your coach to reach out to me at the e-mail address at the bottom of this article. In an effort to be as efficient as possible, and because I feel that it is important to keep the coaches and administrators at the forefront of this process, I respectfully ask that only coaches contact me directly regarding their teams.

 

Beyond that, please share these stories on social media using #ChattanooganSeniorSpotlight, both of teams that you support and others in the community, and help us let everyone know of the tremendous senior student-athletes we have in this area.

 

(E-mail Kevin Llewallyn at kevin.llewallyn@gmail.com.)


Baylor Swimming And Diving Teams Receive National Scholars Recognition

TSSAA Punts On Making Decision For Fall Sports Season

TSSAA And eKnowledge Continue Sponsorship Of SAT and ACT Prep Programs


The Baylor School Swimming & Diving teams were recently recognized by the National Interscholastic Swimming Coaches Association (NISCA) as 2019-2020 Scholar Teams. The Baylor School boys ... (click for more)

(Updated) The TSSAA Board of Control voted Wednesday morning at a special called meeting to delay making any decision on the four options they had been presented for the upcoming prep football ... (click for more)

The Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association is proud to announce its continued support of the National SAT/ACT Prep Project through the National Federation of High Schools (NFHS) and ... (click for more)



Prep Sports

Baylor Swimming And Diving Teams Receive National Scholars Recognition

The Baylor School Swimming & Diving teams were recently recognized by the National Interscholastic Swimming Coaches Association (NISCA) as 2019-2020 Scholar Teams. The Baylor School boys had a 3.628 team GPA to earn NISCA Silver Level Academic status. The boy’s team also got it done in the pool as they claimed the 2020 TISCA State Swimming & Diving Championship. The Baylor ... (click for more)

TSSAA Punts On Making Decision For Fall Sports Season

(Updated) The TSSAA Board of Control voted Wednesday morning at a special called meeting to delay making any decision on the four options they had been presented for the upcoming prep football season. This effectively places all plans for a fall sports season on hold. Executive Director Bernard Childress advised the board that they would like more time to work with the governor’s ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Demand For Testing And COVID Numbers Rising In Hamilton County

Hamilton County health department administrator Becky Barnes on Tuesday reported a record-high 175 new COVID-19 cases in the county for a cumulative of 3,684. She said 1,408 of those cases are active. “We are seeing an increase in a demand for testing, but this is also an increase in positive cases. There has been a gradual increase in a demand for testing since early July, and ... (click for more)

Air Pollution Control Bureau Director Robert Colby To Retire After 40 Years Of Public Service

Stephen E. Meyer, MSc., P.E., FASCE, chairman of the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Air Pollution Control Board, has announced that the director of the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Air Pollution Control Bureau will be retiring from public service. Bob Colby has served as director of the Bureau for the past 30 years. Prior to that, he was staff attorney for the Bureau for 10 years. ... (click for more)

Opinion

Warren Mackey: Why I Will Be Voting For County Commissioner Discretionary Spending

Because I am taking the lead on the County Commission in reinstating discretionary money, I take it that a Commissioner’s comments in the Chattanoogan.Com on July 13 where he asserts that giving discretionary money is a way of currying favor with voters in the next election was aimed at me. We haven’t had discretionary money for over five years now. In spite of not having the ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Gracious! It’s A Comet!

There is a once-in-a-lifetime experience going on above us and it will put any child under the age of 99 years young absolutely in awe. On March 27, a NASA spacecraft known as NEOWISE (that stands for ‘Near-Earth Object Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer) was circling planet Earth in an effort to categorize as many asteroids as possible that are non-threatening yet orbit close ... (click for more)