Westmoore's Shelby Gatton – Academic Athlete of the Month presented by Republic Bank & Trust


Written by John Tranchina

Shelby Gatton is committed to swimming, but as a senior, she knows that her first allegiance has to be towards her schoolwork.

That emphasis is evident in the fact that the Westmoore senior has a 4.0 GPA, despite a busy schedule that includes swimming, school activities and mission work through her church, among other demands on her time.

“It’s very hard,” Gatton said of maintaining high grades while being so busy. “My parents have always stressed that academics come first, so I have to get good grades in order to compete. And I also have a job. So having all those actually helps me make sure that I get everything done. I don’t know if that makes very much sense, but just having a schedule that I have to follow is really beneficial.”

Screen Shot 2018-01-20 at 11.24.57 PM

“She is also very active in her church and goes on frequent mission trips,” Westmoore coach Brent Long added. “She is a very talented swimmer and does a great job of teaching our beginning swimmers how to swim better. She is active in band and a great student.”

Serving as a leader and mentor to her younger teammates is another role that Gatton has taken on this year.

“I’ve swam competitively for 14 years, and a lot of them have never really swam before, and with the background that I have, it’s really easy to be able to teach them new strokes and everything,” she said. “And I’ve been on the team the longest of all the other swimmers, so it kind of falls to me. I really enjoy it, it’s really fun to be able to help out with new people.”