Each week, Marple Newtown Patch will seek suggestions from readers for individual kids, youth groups, teens, and even sports teams that wow us with their accomplishments. This week we highlight a new soon-to-be seventh grader at Paxon Hollow Middle School and a member of the swim and dive team at Rose Tree Woods Swim Club.
Patch Whiz Kid of the Week: Beau McFetridge
Whiz Kid's Age: 12
Whiz Kid's Accomplishment: Beau was a 10-year-old gymnastic state champ from KMC Gym in Kennett Square, who recently moved to Marple. In Beau's first season of gymnastics, he became state champ and in his first season of diving he took five first places of one second. He is in his first year of diving at Rose Tree Woods Swim Club in Broomall and is undefeated.
Beau recently qualified for the elite diving champions tournament by taking third this past week with a score of 109, four behind the first place diver.
Whiz Kid's Awesomeness: Though Beau has never dived before, he has been a star a gymnast when he lived in Kennett Square. A new resident of Broomall, Beau believes gymnastics and diving are very similar.
His only experience with gymnastics was for one year, where he quickly excelled in the sport and received many awards. At just 48 inches tall, Beau was already turning headswhether it was on the rings or high bars.
"I like flipping a lot," said Beau about what he liked best about gymnastics. "It's a challenge with the rings and high bars. And it's pretty fun to do the back handspring."
Though it's only his first year diving, Beau is already looking forward to next season. Beau's position on the team was more of an accident than anything. According to Beau's dad John, Beau was at Rose Tree Woods diving off the diving board when a father, who used to dive for Villanova University, from the club came up to John and said Beau should consider joining the swim and dive team.
John admittedly said he had already asked Beau about the team because his sister was on the swim team but showed no interest to the idea. John said the diving coach then came up him and asked about Beau joining the team who also received the same answer. Later on, he came back to John and said Beau is going to join the swim team.
"He's never been on a swim team and never seriously dived before. The first day he was out there he was doing the inward tuck and all these dives. I think they were astonished by that," said John.
Beau admits he occasionally gets nervous before a meet but says he takes deep breaths to help calm him down. And though he was scared the first time he dived, he said with the help of a coach, he was able to "just do it." And "it got easier as I did it."
Beau said he looks forward to joining the Marple Newtown High School swim and dive team someday but next year, he's really looking forward to joining Paxon Hollow's wrestling team.
"I'm excited for that. I'm also looking forward to gym class and meeting new people, the teachers, and making new friends," said Beau.