Area student-athletes vying to be named 'Ultimate Athlete'

Two Northeast Ohio high school student-athletes – North Ridgeville senior volleyball player Emily Daveant and Salem junior soccer player Marissa Swindell – have advanced one round closer to being named the 2013 Asics America Ultimate Athlete by USA TODAY High School Sports.

Fans and athletes were asked to submit someone who they think is the Ultimate Athlete. This athlete could be someone that excels in all things athletic, someone who has battled adversity or someone that did something unforgettable in a game.

All eligible entries were reviewed, and the 100 finalists were selected by a panel formed by USA TODAY High School Sports and were placed into eight regions by their last name.

The first of three rounds of online voting concluded on Dec. 6.

Thirty-two contestants - including Daveant and Swindell - have advanced to the semifinal round; the two leading vote getters in each round and 16 wild card spots. The wild card spots will be the next top vote getters no matter what region.

Second-round voting is now underway at

The semifinals will be broken down into four regions and the top two vote getters from each region will advance to the final. There will be eight contestants in the final.

The contest winner will receive $100 worth of Asics gear and earn Asics training or warm-up gear for his/her high school sports team. $1,000 will also be donated to the winning athlete's high school athletic department.

Supporters may vote as often as they'd like during each contest period and can vote for as many athletes as they'd like.

Read Daveant's player profile. Then, vote for her.

Read Swindell's player profile. Then, vote for her.

For more Northeast Ohio high school sports news, scores, photos and videos, visit


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