Spins for wins

Varsity and junior varsity guards advance to state

Varsity wins first place at the TECA Madison HS Contest 2019.

Hannah Montalvo

Varsity wins first place at the TECA Madison HS Contest 2019.

Leslie Juarez, Staff Writer

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After months of practicing and weekly competitions, the Winter guard will compete at the TECA State Championships, located at Southwest HS with junior varsity performing at 2:26 pm and varsity performing at 7:41 pm.

This past weekend at the Earl Warren HS TECA Contest, the junior varsity guard received 10th place out of 20 in the Scholastic Regional AA division with a score of 67.94. The varsity scored another first place out of 11 guards in the division of Scholastic A with a score of 81.880. Both guards will be advancing to state championships.

In 2016, the school’s winter guard won state championships for the Texas Educational Colorguard Association. The guard was also the 2016 WGI Tulsa, Oklahoma Regional Champions being in Scholastic Regional A. Jordan Leyendecker is the only senior in the guard who was in the state championships in 2016.

“‘Love is you’ was my freshman year winter guard show.”  Leyendecker said, “We became state champions performing it. It is a beautiful display of a color guards abilities as the work follows right along with the music and fall of the music… “Love is you” is probably the best show I have ever watched/performed and this year’s show “How many Times Why” has a chance to be just as fabulous.”

After the championship title, the guard earned to be a class above Scholastic Regional and is now in Scholastic A. 

In 2017, the guard placed fifth in state with a score of 78.110 for their show, ‘Red Dress Baby.’

“Red dress baby was the beginning of my “story” in colorguard,” Senior Keyerra French said. “It was a song of confidence and carrying yourself as a sexy, sophisticated woman. After every performance I walked away feeling great.”

In 2018, the guard performed the show, ‘Applause.’ Their scores went up and the guard placed fourth in state with a score of 82.550.

”The style of the show didn’t quite fit with the competition we were going against,” Sophomore Anamiek Brooks said. ”Our show was fast and exciting while the other good teams were slow and emotional.”

Both guards are currently making changes and adjustments to boost scores, including doing continuous runs.

“It’s my first Winter guard season so at first I didn’t know what to expect,” Freshman Ariel Melendez said. “Throughout the season I’ve slowly built up my confidence and now that winning first place in state is so close I can’t help but want it even more.”

It is the first time in the school’s history for there being a varsity and junior varsity guard. Both have been doing frequent run throughs during class and after school on Mondays to improve the performances so the scores can increase.

“I feel like JV is slowly relaxing and not working hard enough because of our last score,” freshman Selena Tian said. “We could have done so much better if we worked together. I’m not going to state but I hope we get a good score.”

Freshman Arali Garcia said her teammates and her are dedicated to doing their best.

“I know that the team really wants the championship title,” Garcia said. “We have worked too hard not to. But that isn’t enough, we will try our hardest and practice until we get every rehearsal right. We will smile and blow the audience away.”

Leyndecker said she reflects and critiques on what needs to be done so the guard can receive the state championship title.

“Right now things are going quite well,” Leyendecker said. “Our show is cleaning up and we are having less and less equipment drops. We will need a clean run in order to have a shot at first place.”

This competition will be the last for the seniors in the guard.

“I’m so nervous!” Senior Aliyah Woitena said, “I’ll miss my friends but I won’t miss all the bus rides after when we were sleepy.”

If the guard wins state championships, Leyendecker would end her final year of guard with another state championship.

“I would absolutely love to end my final year of high school with another state championship win.” Leyendecker said, “There is no better feeling than going out with a bang. I would be very satisfied to leave high school and color guard knowing I did my best and that together we succeeded.”

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