Rock Aqua Jays win their 19th National Show Ski Championships title

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Andrea Anderson
Sunday, August 10, 2014

JANESVILLE–Show skiers for the Rock Aqua Jays hooted and hollered and pushed their teammates into the Rock River Sunday after finding out the team had won its 19th national championship.

The tournament, the 2014 Indmar Marine Engines National Show Ski Championships, not only marked the 40th anniversary of the show ski nationals, it marked the fourth consecutive year the Rock Aqua Jays took home the team title.

“This weekend the team came together as a family and proved that a team beats individuals,” said Aaron Schoelzel, Rock Aqua Jays show director.

Show skiers from 14 teams and six states competed in the tournament, which was held Friday through Sunday at Traxler Park in Janesville. On Sunday, the air smelt less like sunscreen than the previous days, but the bleachers were still packed with anxious skiers awaiting results.

This was the 25th time the local water ski show club hosted the event at Traxler Park. It started in Janesville.

Before the winner was announced, “Ooohs” and “Holy smokes” echoed in the stadium when the first and second place scores were announced.

The Janesville team won by 66.06 points over the Backwater Gamblers of Rock Island, Illinois, an indication of the stiff competition, Schoelzel said.

“The competition this year was very, very tough… All came with their A game this weekend,” he said.

During the three-day tournament, the Aqua Jays maintained their focus and worked well as a team despite a bumpy start to their team routine Saturday morning, Schoelzel said.

The team's opening pyramid fell. Historically the team struggles once something goes wrong, he said. This tournament was different.

 “When that happened the team bought into the philosophy that I have been preaching all year, and it's that we have a job to do and it's time to do work,” Schoelzel said.

The skiers dumped five gallons of ice-cold water on the show director after the winner was announced.

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