Over the past two seasons, Osceola’s swimming program has enjoyed a revival and that upward trend continued Friday when senior student Noah Maniace signed an athletic scholarship for swimming at West Virginia Tech, an NAIA school located in Beckley, West Virginia
“The opportunity to continue swimming at the university level is really exciting,” Manyacci said. “Some other schools called me, but West Virginia Tech was the first to stick with me. The campus looked great and I thought it would be the right place for me.”
Maniace became the first male swimmer from Osceola High School to receive an athletic scholarship to assist with the sport since 1993.
“He came in as a freshman and became part of the school registry in his first season and will leave with his name on two school records,” said OHS coach Krsytle Bayliss. “He’s been an important part of our program and a great team leader. When he’s not in the water, he’s by the pool cheering for his teammates. Other swimmers gravitate toward him.”
At Osceola, he focused on the 50-meter freestyle and 100 breaststroke, but he also showed his versatility by winning the longest high school swimming event, the 500 freestyle, at the Orange Belt Conference. He participated in several relay teams.
He capped his high school career by placing him in the top eight in four zone events: sixth in each of the 50 free kicks and 100 breaststrokes, the third in a leg swim on the Osceola 400 freestyle relay and fifth in the 200 freestyle relay. He advanced to two regional events, where he placed 16th in the 50 free relay and swam 10th for the Osceola 400 free relay.
Maniace says he will most likely compete in sprints and 100 breaststrokes in college, but added that he will do what is asked of him.
“Right now these are my two best events but we’ll see what happens. I love diverse events and even 500free can be a possibility. We’ll just wait and see what they have in store for me when I get there.”
Bayliss says Maniace is a perfect fit for WVU Tech.
“They have a really good program both athletically and academically and Noah is a really good athlete and a great student. He should contribute immediately.”
Maniace, an honors student, says he will major in electrical engineering and hopes to eventually earn a master’s degree in the subject.
Although he became the first Osceola swimmer to receive a college scholarship for athletics in 28 years, Bayliss says it won’t be the last. Anthony Ambrosi, who won 50 and 100 free races in the OBC Championship and later earned all-state honors with a sixth place finish in the FHSAA Class 4A Championship, has been recruited by several schools.
“Hopefully we’ll have something to write about Anthony soon,” Bayliss said. “They both had great seasons and they meant a lot to our programme.”