Salt River High School held its end-of-the-year sports awards program on May 12, during school hours in the school’s auditorium. Students filled up all the seats to support their fellow classmates who participated in athletic programs throughout the 2014-15 school year.
Staff and coaches walked up to the podium to thank parents for driving their kids to the events, players for participating, coaches for working long hours, and students and school staff for their support.
“Sports can really bring a community together. I witness this at games, and especially at the girls’ basketball championship game held in downtown Phoenix,” said SRHS Athletic Director Brandon Tauscher.
As teams came up to get recognition and awards, their coaches offered praise and recapped their seasons. Many of the students played back-to-back games or even two spots at a time. A five-minute video showcased many of the teams and their accomplishments during the year.
Some of the highlights of the afternoon:
Vicky Ruiz of the cheer team was honored. Her position as a flyer for the squad means she was often perched on the other girls’ shoulders or was tossed around during the games, which calls for a lot of trust between her and her teammates to catch her.
Simon Smith commended his cross-country team for bringing back the tradition of running and keeping their endurance up throughout the season. Ki-Ana Loring, who placed 19th in the state meet, was praised for cross-country by her team and coach.
The wrestling team thanked its members, particularly Orlanthia Chase, a two-time state champion for Arizona who qualified for national fastest pin in 36 seconds.
Last were the baseball, softball, and track and field teams. This year two participants in track and field went on to compete in the CAA State Championship in shot put and discus throw.
Awards given out honored team participation as well as individual awards for Most Improved, Most Valuable Player and the SRHS Eagle Award.