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2011-12 Saugus High Co-Female Athletes of the Year: Karis Frankian and Abbey Weitzeil

Posted: June 28, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: June 28, 2012 1:55 a.m.

Saugus cross country and track and field runner Karis Frankian was named the school's co-Female Athlete of the Year for 2011-12.

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When Saugus named its Athletes of the Year this season, there was a symbolism that was impossible to ignore — a changing of the guard, so to speak.

It fit well with the school’s decision to name co-Female Athletes of the Year to Karis Frankian and Abbey Weitzeil.

On one hand, there was Frankian, a senior who has been part of a Saugus state title in cross country in each of her four years at the school — including the school’s sixth straight this season.

“It wouldn’t have happened without her,” said Saugus cross country coach Rene Paragas. “She was the leader. She carried the burden of not only our team this year but the burden and expectation of our program and shouldered that the whole way.”

On the other hand, there’s freshman Weitzeil, a 15-year-old who burst onto the Foothill League swim scene to win two Foothill League and two CIF-Southern Section titles in her first season at the school.

“Just based off her stellar season she had, also the fact that she is the first swimmer actually in Foothill League to win two CIF events at CIF (finals) had a huge role to play with it,” said Saugus swim coach Vicky Donnelly of why Abbey was honored. “Part of the fact she’s representing Saugus and Canyons Aquatics at Olympic Trials this week, she just had an overall record-breaking swim season. “

The two continued to receive honors all season long, Frankian named All-Santa Clarita Valley Player of the Year in cross country and named to the All-SCV track and field team, while Weitzeil was the All-SCV Girls Swimmer of the Year.

Between the two, Saugus couldn’t choose.

In Frankian’s case, the senior showed that Saugus cross country is still the team to beat in the Foothill League — helping the cross country team to its sixth straight state title in a season in which the program was supposed to be down.

“She did the work every time,” Paragas said. “We have a saying in distance running, ‘being bullet proof.’ Somebody you don’t have to worry about. It doesn’t matter if you’re sick, what the pressure is, they’re going to come away with a great performance.”

Weitzeil’s impact was the opposite, helping the Centurions put up a fight in a Foothill League that has long been dominated by Hart.

“I think it’s kind of finally made a turn for where the girls cross country team has been so strong and now we’re kind of seeing a changing of the tides,” said Saugus swim coach Vicky Donnelly. “With the addition of Abbey this year, and the fact that we have a very strong group of girls for the next couple years.”


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