Junior Lifeguards Win Nine National Titles
By Marie Puleo
The 2018 National Team of the Pompano Beach Junior Lifeguard Program (Team Pompano) was recognized by Mayor Lamar Fisher at the Sept. 11 City Commission meeting for obtaining nine national titles and numerous runner-up finishes at this year’s U.S. Lifesaving Association National Championship in Virginia Beach, an event which drew about 400 participants. The 16-member team brought home nine gold medals, four silver medals, nine bronze medals, seven fourth-place finishes and 13 fifth-place finishes, for a total of 45 medals overall.
The young athletes excelled in conditions adverse to their training – a stronger current, rougher waves and cooler water than in Florida – and against top junior lifeguard competitors from around the country. Team Pompano member Mattheus Santos, 17, was selected to be on the U.S. team to compete in the 2018 Lifesaving World Championships in Adelaide, Australia, based on his performance at the Virginia Beach competition.