Tunkhannock senior swimmer AJ Hodge took first place in each of the four events he swam in on Friday against Nanticoke. The Tigers narrowly beat the Trojans, making Hodge’s firsts in the 100 butterfly and 500 freestyle, as well as a part of the 200 medley relay and 200 freestyle relay teams crucial in the win. In recognition of his achievement, Hodge has been named the Wyoming County Press Examiner Athlete of the Week.
Grade, age, hometown: Senior, 17, Falls
Family: Dad Adam, mom Tina, sister Kady (20)
Events: 400 medley relay, 100 fly, 200 free relay, and 100 breast
Three reasons why you swim: I swim because I have friends on the team, I enjoy the teamwork and I learned leadership skills. I don’t think I would have earned a captain’s “C” if it wasn’t for swimming.
Other sports I play: I run cross country and do the pole vault in track and field. I also do the one- and two-mile and 400 relay. I want to try the discus again this season. I might also try to play tennis as well in the spring.
Athletes I admire: Peter Sayre
Favorite Movie: “Edge of Tomorrow”
Favorite Sports Movie: “Miracle”
Favorite Book: “Green Eggs and Ham” by Dr. Seuss
Favorite Food: Pineapples
Favorite Band/Artist: Electric Light Orchestra
Favorite school subject: History with Mr. Good
Three people I’d like to have dinner with, dead or alive: Keanu Reeves, Marilyn Monroe, and Dylan Mislevy.
Biggest Role Model and why: My dad because of his work ethic and overall kindness. He works long hours and is still a decent person. Sometimes people lose the ability to connect with each other because they are too tired, but he still keeps our connection despite those long hours.
Post-graduation plans: I have a job interest in the Coast Guard. Eventually I’d like to get the GI Bill and go to school, but right now I am focused on joining.
Superstitions or rituals: I like to get my blood pumping, get excited. I keep myself active on the block.
When did you start swimming competitively? Seventh grade
Favorite school/field to compete at and why? Tunkhannock. When we swim at home, we win at home. Everytime we get in the pool, we defend our pool. We are trained to swim there.
What is your favorite swimming memory? On the way back from the Bucknell Invitational this year, we stopped at a Quaker Steak and Lube restaurant. They have a Triple Atomic Hot Wing Challenge. Coach Mislevy was egging me on, saying the team had a record of eight wings in the past, and didn’t think I could beat it. I did- I had nine. I spent the whole van ride home on my side on the floor, but I won.
What is your dream job? Getting enough money to lay on the beach by the bay without having to work. I want to get all my money from investing or the stock market.
What is the coolest place you have traveled to? Hawaii
Do you speak another language? A little Spanish, but I also took classes in Latin and German. And coach Randy White sometimes says “1-2-3- Go” in Japanese, so I know that.
What would be your team anthem? “Thunderstruck” by AC/DC
Who are your closest teammates? All of us seniors are usually grouped together. I’ve been friends with Jordan Wagner since before swimming, and Mike Astegher is a close teammate too.
How would you describe your coach in one word? Fair
How would they describe you? Goofball
What is the best place for post game food? (Laughing) Quaker Steak and Lube
What is your favorite sports quote? BOHA. We always say it. It means “Bring Out the Heavy