Valedictorian: Montgomery Cain

By: Libby Sanchez & Shyanne Sexton

Montgomery Cain, a student who lives by his motto of “never doing anything halfway,” and, “ if he is gonna do it, he’s gonna do it right.” Montgomery, who goes by “Monty,” is known around campus for his hard work and determination. Over the last 4 years, Monty has worked incredibly hard in all of his classes to keep his grades up and earn the title of Valedictorian of the graduating class of 2022. 

Montgomery is planning on attending Texas Tech University to study finance with a concentration in real estate. “Both my parents are Red Raiders, so I’ve kinda been raised as a Red Raider,” stated Montgomery. He looks forward to learning how to properly run a business and manage money, which is not only important in business but in life as well. “I love Lubbock, it’s a big town with everything you need in it, but it still feels like a small town. I’ve got a lot of friends up there, good connections, and it’s gonna give me a quality degree that I’m gonna be able to use and be able to make a living off of,” he says. 

One of the most prosperous things Montgomery lives by is the quote, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” The ability to network among people and talk comfortably among others is one of the hardest traits to have. For Monty, it all comes naturally. “Being able to communicate with people is a huge part of not only just business but everything in life. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve talked to. If you’re diverse in a lot of fields, you’re able to relate with all kinds of different people and learn from them,” he says. 

Montgomery has a drive in him that keeps him going till he’s satisfied, and even then it’s not enough as he sets even higher goals for himself. Outside of his education, Montgomery is in the process of earning his private pilot license. He is hoping to get all the way up to airline transport pilot, which means getting his instrument rating, multi-engine rating, and access to flying helicopters. With these licenses, Montgomery is expanding his future options. He could go into the military and fly fighter jets, he could go with commercial airlines, or he could open a private helicopter business with a focus on ag aviation and wildlife surveys. Recently, he’s invested his time into his newly founded business “T47, LLC.” Named after his grandfathers, the company focuses on custom welding and fabrication. A lot of people think welding is just putting two pieces of metal together, you run a bead to connect them, and you call it good. But when you’re running it as a business, creating it as a product with your name on it, that represents you and what you believe in. For me, its quality,” stated Montgomery. Along with running a business, Monty competes in competitive shooting sports. In 2021, Montgomery earned himself the title of a 4-H Shotgun National Champion alongside his three other teammates. It’s admirable that he’s been able to find the balance between his education and work outside of school. 

Montgomery is a very persistent individual who will grow up and accomplish everything he wants in life, but not without giving credit to those who have helped him along the way. Teachers like Mrs. Bast, Ms. Kelley, and Mr. Townsend have helped pave the way for this phenomenal leader. Mrs. Bast, who has impacted students throughout her years here at PISD, is one of Montgomery’s biggest influencers. “It’s amazing to be in the presence of someone who’s had so much experience of something really unique, like working at NASA. She teaches a hard subject too, not everyone is meant to understand calculus. At some points, I didn’t even understand it. Mrs. Bast made it always feel like it was possible, she always took something that seems really difficult to most people, and it is, and made it doable,” he states. When asked about Montgomery’s character and performance during her class, Mrs. Bast’s response was: “Amazing. Gifted. Willing. I think his thirst for knowledge and understanding is inspiring to teachers and classmates alike.” As someone who is looked up to by not just Montgomery, but the entire graduating class of 2022, Mrs. Bast leaves them with this advice for their future: “Don’t let the climate of the world steal your faith or your hope, or your dreams.”

Alongside the teachers and faculty here at PHS, there are two more very important people who have had a tremendous impact on Montgomery’s life. “Everyone probably says this, but I truly could not have done any of this without my parents’ constant support and guidance,” he states. His parents, who have made it their mission to teach Montgomery every definition of the word “humility” could not be prouder of their son in all that he does. “We are proud of him and grateful for the teachers and others who have inspired him and been part of his journey. Every parent wants happiness for their children. Montgomery has boundless energy and career and life goals. We hope he strives for excellence, pushes through fear, and has fun while realizing his vision for the future. We love him and can’t wait to see what’s next for him,” his mother says. It’s clear to see what a positive impact Montgomery has had growing up, and it’s even better to see him succeeding with that built character. 

Montgomery has a bright future ahead of him and judging by his character, he will be determined to keep reaching for higher goals. He leaves his fellow classmates with the advice, “If you reach a goal, don’t stop there and just be complacent with that, keep going. Never limit yourself.” Remember all the hard work you did to get to this point, and keep pushing the limits. To Montgomery, and the rest of the class of 2022, we wish you all the absolute best of luck in all your future endeavors!

Women’s Soccer

By: Libby Sanchez

2021-2022 Seniors

The Pleasanton Women’s Varsity soccer team played Hondo here at home on March 8, 2022. After a great game full of good plays, our girls ended the match with a winning score of 3-0. They continued into district to play Somerset on Mar 11, 2022, and brought home the win 2-1. The girls played their final district game on Mar 14, 2022, against YWLA and beat them once again with a final score of 4-1. The Eagles advanced into the first round of playoffs where they played the Palacios Sharkettes and won 3-0, advancing them to round two. In round two, the Eagles went head to head against Wimberley, a long-time rival. After losing to Wimberley in the pre-district game, our girls were determined to win and come out on top after all our hard work and improvement. Pleasanton held their ground all throughout the first half and majority of the second, but unfortunately, Wimberley scored their first goal in the final fifteen minutes of the game. Two more quickly followed, and the game ended with a score of 3-0, ending the Eagle’s season. Senior Ashlyn Vera says, “It really was a bittersweet moment, I’ve played this sport since I was little and the moment I realized this was my last game I started bawling my eyes out.” Ashlyn, along with 6 other seniors are graduating this year, but not without leaving their mark on this program. “The junior class has grown up playing this sport with the senior class, from club soccer to school soccer, they’ve made their impact on us. It’s gonna be a huge adjustment next year without them, but I’m looking forward to their bright futures and the future of this program,” said Brylee Miller, Junior. The program is sad to see such great players leaving, but they are looking forward to next year’s team and can’t wait to give it all they got next season!

Women’s Soccer

By: Libby Sanchez

Seniors Kendall Espey and Kenley Everett after their 3-2 victory over La Vernia.

The Pleasanton Women’s Varsity soccer team started the month off with a 3-2 win against one of their biggest rivals, La Vernia, on February 1st. After tying 0-0 and losing 1-0 against them last season, it felt great for the girls to finally avenge themselves. Not too long after, on February 4th, the girls took home another win against Poteet with a final score of 8-0. After working hard at practice and going over everything they needed to, the varsity girls were ready to play another big rival, Uvalde. It was a hard-fought game, but unfortunately, the Eagles fell short 4-1. This loss only encouraged the varsity team to train harder, in hopes of beating them in March when they play each other again. The JV team took home a 2-0 win against Uvalde to start their first game of the month off great. On February 11, the varsity team traveled to Hondo ready to play and ended the game with an 8-0 win before staying to watch the Pleasanton Men’s Varsity team in their game against Hondo right after. Both the Men’s and Women’s teams enjoyed supporting each other and look forward to doing it again when both teams play Hondo in March. The Women’s JV team ensured a 7-0 win against West Campus at home on February 11th. On the 15th, both Varsity and JV played against Somerset here at home and both teams won; Varsity with a score of 3-0 and JV with a score of 5-0. On Friday the 18th, both teams went up against YWLA and won again; Varsity 4-0 and JV 5-0. On February 28th, the varsity girls traveled to SAISD to  play against Fox Tech once again and brought home an 8-0 win. The following Tuesday, March 1st, the varsity team hosted a game against Poteet here at home and won 8-0. This night was also teacher appreciation night, where each girl selected a teacher from our district that impacted them and honored them before the game. On March 4th, both teams traveled to Uvalde ready for a good game they’ve been preparing for. Due to missing many girls for the game, varsity had a new game plan in mind in order to hold their ground. Coach Bird was forced to pull his 6th string goalie and put her in the box, along with pulling two JV girls up to play in the varsity game. After a long 80 minute game, varsity fell short 3-0. The girls are still very proud of their performance, as it went much better than they could’ve expected. Both teams are looking forward to finishing the season off strong. 

Student Spotlight: Finley Hilburn

By: Libby Sanchez 

For this month’s student spotlight, the Quill staff wanted to bring recognition to one of Pleasanton High School’s most outstanding freshman, Finley Hilburn. Finley is the oldest out of four siblings and does her best to be a great role model to them. As a freshman, Finley wanted to try all her options and took on many sports including basketball, softball, and cross country. Her skill and ability to see the court led her to being the only freshman to make the Varsity basketball team. Upperclassmen quickly took her in on the team, going as far as giving her the nickname “Fin Fin.” This year, the girls’ basketball team made it into the playoffs, and Finley was honored to be a part of something so important. “Making it to playoffs was really special because as a freshman I didn’t think I’d experience that so soon, but it was great to show what we worked hard for and I loved playing with those girls,” stated Hilburn. 

Outside of school, Finley loves helping her dad coach little league teams and helping younger generations improve on their sport. In the future, Finley wants to coach basketball and she loves that she can practice her coaching skills now. “My favorite subject right now is world history, I could see myself either teaching that or science in my future too,” says Hilburn. Pleasanton High School is happy to have such a dedicated student to set an example for future classes. Keep up the great work Finley! 

HOSA Handwashing

By: Libby Sanchez

This pandemic has put emphasis on many things, but one of the most important would have to be hand washing. Now more than ever it’s crucial to get such a simple thing right. Our HOSA program here at Pleasanton High School has been informing many students about the process of handwashing and how to do it correctly. Kelly Mertz (senior) and Trinity Garcia (junior) visited the Journalism class and gave a very well-thought-out presentation. They provided a visual example of how to properly wash your hands to diminish the spread of germs. A student was asked to cover their hands in glo germ, a visual tool for handwash training. The student was then sent to the bathroom to wash their own hands based on how they already knew how to. When the student returned, the glo germ for the most part had been washed away. Though, there were still parts of the hand carrying large amounts of germs. Most students wash their hands the basic way they were taught: scrub the palms, between the fingers, scrub the back of the hand, and rinse. It’s become such a habit that people just go through the motions and that’s what keeps the spread of germs progressing. In this presentation, we were provided with the correct process: wet your hands, apply soap,  lather, and scrub (palms, between fingers, under fingernails, back of the hand) for 20 seconds, rinse 10 seconds, grab a paper towel and turn off the tap, and dry your hands. Trinity emphasizes, “It’s very important that you don’t touch the sink at any point during the handwashing process. If you touch any surface of the sink after you put soap on, you’re recontaminating your hands.” In between washes, it’s also a great idea to sanitize often. Kelly Mertz states, “Hand sanitizer needs to have 60% alcohol in order to work effectively and disinfect your hands.” Overall our HOSA program is doing an amazing job of emphasizing the importance of handwashing during this pandemic and every day to follow. We wish them the best of luck in their competition coming up on February 11th!

“Good, Better, Best.”

By: Aaliyah Herrera & Libby Sanchez

Seniors Joel Arevalo (left) and Peyton Eichman (right) holding Dr. Mann’s honorable jersey before round three of playoffs.

The Pleasanton Eagle Football team traveled to Kerrville on Friday, November 12, to play Lampasas in the first round of play-offs. Both teams fought hard and were tied 7-7 at the end of the first quarter. Wanting to drag on the question of who would win, they proceeded to go into halftime tied 14-14. In the third quarter, Pleasanton decided it was time to kick it up a notch and upped the score 21-14, ensuring their lead in the fourth and final quarter. Lampasas, determined to get their comeback, scored a touchdown with the extra point with 10 minutes left of the fourth quarter, making it tied once again 21-21. With their comeback came a new rush of adrenaline, causing them to score a final touchdown with 3 minutes left in the game. The excitement was too much for their kicker, who missed their extra point but kept them in the lead 27-21. All for dramatics, Pleasanton waited till the final minute of the game to do something spectacular. A pass was completed for a touchdown, along with the extra point with only seconds left to spare. Making it impossible for Lampasas to make a final comeback. The game was close throughout all four quarters, and ended with a final score of 28-27, sending Pleasanton to round two of the playoffs. Setting Lampasas seasonal record to 5 wins and 6 losses, and making ours 8 wins and 3 losses.

On November 18, the Eagles faced off against the Trojans in the second round of playoffs here on our home turf. Pleasanton packed the stands in green and white to show their support for the team. The Eagles ended the first quarter with a lead of 7-0, setting their spirits high for another great game. With 7 minutes left in the second quarter, Jones scored their first touchdown to tie the game with the eagles. Pleasanton, wanting to keep their lead, scored another touchdown. Taking us into halftime with a positive score of 14-7. Ensuring Jones couldn’t make anylast-minute points to come back and beat them, Pleasanton ended the third quarter with another touchdown and extra point, making it 21-7. Taking advantage of Pleasanton’s focus to keep distance between the score, Jones attempted to make a comeback with some final touchdowns but still fell short in the fourth quarter. Once again, the Eagles kept their fans on their toes throughout the game and brought home another win by one point. They beat the Trojans with a final score of 21-20, now upgrading their seasonal record 9-3 for the year, and sending themselves well on their way to round 3.

The eagles, determined to stay ahead of their game, were up bright and early every day during the break practicing for their next game. Game 3 was set to be played on November 26, the day after Thanksgiving against Fredericksburg. Aiming for round four of playoffs, the Eagles ended the first quarter with a lead 6-0. Both teams fought hard during the second quarter and made it entertaining, bringing us into halftime with a score of 14-13 in Fredericksburg’s favor. Third-quarter only continued to benefit Fredericksburg, ending with a score of 18-13. Much like the previous games, Pleasanton attempted a last-minute comeback to win the game and scored a final touchdown. Unfortunately, after a well-fought game, the Eagles fell short 28-20, ending their 2021 season. 

This season held great teamwork, sportsmanship, and great positive choices that contributed to the team. We are happy to say our eagle football team had yet another great season this year, and can’t wait to see what next year has in store!

Homecoming Representatives

By: Libby Sanchez 

2021-2022 Homecoming King and Queen Oscar Leal and Natalie Muniz

Freshman Class Representatives :

  • Chloe Nieschwitz & Austin Dinscore

Sophomore Class Representatives :

  • Ciarah Garcia & Adrian Garcia
  • Emree Adamitz & Jayden Palacios

Junior Class Representatives : 

  • Desiree Duran & Donovan Alaniz
  • Michaela Anguiano & Matthew Smith

Senior Homecoming Court :

  • Peyton Eichman & Melanie Douglas
  • Kelly Mertz & Justin Veale
  • Linda Sanchez & Juan Lopez

Senior Homecoming King & Queen :

  • Natalie Muniz & Oscar Leal

Ghost Story: Be A Doll, Would Ya?

By: Libby Sanchez

This story takes place in prime time Covid-19 during 2020, when the whole world is shut in from one another. Chloe, a victim of covid at the time, is without a doubt one of the biggest horror fans and would say 100% that Halloween was her favorite holiday. So you can imagine her disappointment when she tested positive and was forced to quarantine. Though it wasn’t as great as it usually was anyways because not many parents were letting their children trick-or-treat due to the virus. 

Chloe’s story begins with her being in the early stages of quarantine, already bored out of her mind but still wanting to get into the spooky feeling that comes this time of year. What other way to do that than by watching scary movies and paranormal youtube videos? One evening, she’d stumbled upon a corny looking video on youtube about a doll from eBay that looked like it had been shot from a little girl’s basement. Chloe, who was slowly feeling sicker by the hour, was just looking for a good laugh and decided to check it out. Immediately, a porcelain doll with blonde hair and bright blue eyes filled her laptop screen. The doll spoke in an old-english accent, but even people back then would’ve told you how forced her voice was.

“Hi-ya, my name is Margie.” Followed by a toe-curling cackle, the kind you only hear in horror movies. 

“You’re quite the gal, huh? A real catch.”

To which Chloe retaliated with her own laugh, thinking that whoever was on the other side of this video was trying way too hard to scare viewers. Though in her state, laughing led her to coughing, the painful kind too. Pausing the video to catch her breath and grab a glass of water from her kitchen, she returned to her laptop with a crushing feeling in her chest. Not thinking much of it because of the illness she tested positive for, she pressed play on the video again. 

“Poor little you, all cooped up like an animal. Must be lonely, I know how that is.”

Now that line struck a small chord with Chloe, it was odd how specific and fitting it was to her situation of being quarantined. But nothing too unnerving, many others were also quarantined during this pandemic, it could target anyone. Letting out a chuckle at her own paranoia, she indulged in another coughing fit. Deciding her cough wasn’t going to go away anytime soon unless she acted upon it, she left the video playing and went to her medicine cabinet to grab her cough syrup. Just as she was about to take her first dose of medicine, the doll, who had remained quiet and just stared through the screen as if it was watching her, finally spoke again.

“Ah-ah, the giggle water isn’t gonna help the lonely, sweetheart.”

Freezing in shock, Chloe dropped the bottle of medicine, leading its contents to pour all over the counter in front of her. Now that was too specific, the chances were too slim for that to be a coincidence. Deciding she’d had enough, Chloe slid her cursor over to the top right corner and was going to close the tab when her attention shifted to the doll one last time. Finding the doll with its head tilted upward and to the right, almost as if its eyes were following Chloe’s movements, was enough for her to continue her mission of closing the tab.

“Hey lady! Hey! Don’t you dare give me the silent treatment, we’re friends lady.”

Once again, Chloe froze in fear. Was it possible she was hallucinating? Was she really that sick? Margie sat silent on the screen with a wicked smirk upon her face. Allowing her eyes to scan the full screen, Chloe settled upon the account view. It was then that she felt her heart drop to her stomach, suddenly becoming nauseous. No subscribers. One view. Her view. 

Certain now that things were getting too creepy, Chloe closed the tab and turned on every light in her house before going to bed that night. Sleep didn’t come easy, it’s hard when the pit in your stomach keeps telling you you’re being watched, but eventually she felt her eyelids give way. She woke up the next morning and had convinced herself that she was dreaming or Covid-19 had gotten in her head. Laughing at her panic from the night before, Chloe went about another day of quarantine. 

It wasn’t until mid afternoon that day, that her doorbell rang. It was odd, she hadn’t ordered food and her friends and family knew she was sick and quarantining. 

“Who is it?” 

“It’s Margie, be a doll and open up the door, would ya?” The voice from the night before replied.

Chloe claims it was a rush of adrenaline and anger, thinking maybe someone was playing a prank on her, that made her open the door in a rush. Who would be cruel enough to play a trick like this on someone who’s sick? Upon seeing nobody on her porch, Chloe let out a huff and went to close the door, only a package was blocking the door from closing. Upset at her brain for playing tricks on her in broad daylight, she grabbed the box and brought it inside. She didn’t remember ordering anything recently, but maybe she’d forgotten or her mother had sent another random gift. Eager to know the answer, she ripped open the package. Only what she found wasn’t a gift. But instead the same blonde hair, the same blue eyes, and the same porcelain doll that was Margie, staring right at her. The fear could only be described by one word: paralyzing. Giving herself a while to process, Chloe once again decided this was all some big hoax and someone was probably getting a kick out of scaring her, so she walked the doll right out her front door and into her trash can.

Though, to this day she still tells herself it was all some big joke or hallucination, she still has doubts about her standpoint, and the toe-curling cackle she hears every night since then doesn’t do anything to prove her right.

Teacher Spotlight: Mr. Moin

By: Ariana Johnson, Autumn Webster, Libby Sanchez, Kristina Mertz

Raymond Moin, also known as Mr. Moin is teaching his first year here at Pleasanton High School. Prior to working at our school, Mr. Moin taught for 6 years at San Antonio ISD. He is currently the Criminal Justice teacher, where he teaches Forensic Science, Law Enforcement, and Principles of LPSCS. He is even the leader of PHS’s own Police Explorers, where you can get a good idea of what the students do by watching the Big E-News. Balancing all these subjects sounds like a stressful job, but Mr. Moin makes it look easy and does a fantastic job. He is a fresh new face here at Pleasanton High School, so we were excited to learn a little bit more about him. 

Mr. Moin earned his degree at Wayland Baptist University located in San Antonio. His main inspiration for teaching is his “family,” who were previously also involved in educational occupations.

Like all teachers and staff on our campus, Mr. Moin has his bad days but he’s comforted knowing he’s doing things for a bigger purpose. “Watching my students graduate then starting again with another group” is one of the most difficult things Mr. Moin faces.

Mr. Moin does it all and it’s evident through the eyes of the students. One of his students, Brylee Miller, stated: “School has barely started and he’s already taught us twenty new laws, multiple ways to handcuff and arrest people, and he just makes it fun and engaging.” 

The students here at PHS are so very thankful for Mr. Moin and his willingness to teach students something new every day. Thank you, Mr. Moin!

I felt a breeze, it’s Fall.

By: Libby Sanchez

Fall is pretty much everyone’s favorite time of the year. It’s the only time of the year that Texas has a decent idea of what kind of weather it wants for a while. Everyone is usually relieved to get rid of the scorching heat that comes with summer. Fall is the time when the cool breeze starts to set in and everyone can finally run around like they’re not about to pass out from a heat stroke. Stores have started selling pumpkins, pumpkin spices, cookies, and my most favorite, Halloween decorations. People are settling in with their goodies and getting ready for cool nights outside by the fire, the smell of fresh cookies, and scary movies. Or if you’re Wanish you’re raking leaves and jumping in them, which is so basic and gives off main character vibes but whatever. It’s the season that Disney channel starts replaying old Monstober movies, which brings back the best nostalgia. It’s the perfect time to go to a pumpkin patch with your friends and family, or even a corn maize to add to the spookiness of the season! 

Fall is known as the “Meteor Shower Season” across the northern hemisphere. Be on the lookout for shooting stars and multi-colored meteors almost every night this season. The color of a meteor depends on its chemical composition. Red usually consists of nitrogen/oxygen, blue consists of iron, purple is calcium, orange is sodium, and light blue is usually magnesium.  Below are some of the top five meteor shows to look for! Make the most out of this year’s fall season!

Draconids: 5-10 meteors/hour                           estimated peak nights: October 8 & 9

Orionids: 20 meteors/hour                                 estimated peak nights: October 21 & 22

Northern Taurids: 5 meteors/hour                      estimated peak nights: November 11 & 12

Leonids: 10-20 meteors/hour                             estimated peak nights: November 17 & 18

Geminids: 120+ meteors/hour                           estimated peak nights: December 13 & 14

JROTC

By: Libby Sanchez

Pleasanton JROTC participating at the Pleasanton City Wide Memorial Day Ceremony.

As the school year comes to an end, so do the clubs and organizations within our district. After Covid-19 took their chance of an End of Year Award Ceremony and Change of Command Ceremony last year, Pleasanton JROTC was excited to be able to participate in this event on May 20th . The Change of Command Ceremony is significant because it’s a change of authority of Cadet Senior Leadership. Announced at this event was next year’s new Battalion Commander, Simon Karsky (Junior), and Battalion Command Sergeant Major, Hayli Woodson (Sophomore). On May 22nd, JROTC participated in the Alpha Warrior Challenge at Retama Park in San Antonio. After practicing and training for this event the previous weekend, our Eagles were ready to dominate the hour and 45 minute course. They were split up into an 8 person male team and an 8 person female team. The Eagles won 4th place out of the 12 teams in the male category, and the Pink Eagles won 2nd place. Pleasanton High School JROTC was very honored to participate in the Pleasanton City Wide Memorial Day Ceremony to pay their respects to our fallen heroes this past weekend. They participated in a wreath laying ceremony at the Veteran Memorial early Sunday morning. Over the summer, 10 cadets were chosen to participate in the JROTC Cadet Leadership Challenge. The 5 male cadets chosen are: Lorenzo Samaniego, Aries Uhl, Logan Alexander,  Valdamore Herrera, and Kenneth Alegria. The 5 female cadets chosen are: Natalia Jones, Alaina Nethken, Courtney Cearley, Annie Araiza, and Hayli Woodson. It’s a 4 day overnight event that focuses on team building and cadet leadership. Colonel Wynder has done a great job with this year’s JROTC program and is beyond proud of the graduating seniors. “I want them to take the lessons they’ve learned during this experience and apply them for the rest of their lives, motivate young people, set up for success, live by the cadet creed, and always be successful.” Good luck to those graduating, and we’re looking forward to what JROTC has in store for next year! 

Women’s Soccer: Not Just a Team, a Family

By: Libby Sanchez

The Pleasanton Women’s Soccer Team celebrating after a win against Beeville in playoffs.

On this team, nobody goes through anything alone. This has been proven by the black armbands worn by the girls every game since to represent the loss of a beautiful woman, Robyn Miller, on March 11. “This team means so much to me and seeing them support my family during such a hard time even if it’s as small as wearing a black armband, it means the world to me,” said Brylee Miller. Instead of letting the situation get the better of them, they took it all out on the field and played with a deep purpose behind it all. 

The Pleasanton Women‘s Soccer Team had their first playoff game against Beeville on March 26. After a long battle in both halves, the score was tied 0-0 and the teams went into a shootout. Coach Bird selected Seniors: Renata Osorio, Sofia Rivera, Kaitlyn Garcia, Lacey Stevens, and Junior: Skylar Mitchell. 

Renata was up to take the first shot for Pleasanton. Osorio took her shot, but unfortunately, Beeville’s goalie was able to block it. Lucky for us, Renata’s adrenaline rush caused her to shoot the ball before the ref blew his whistle, therefore forcing her to take the shot again. This time she waited a few seconds after the whistle was blown, and sent a beautiful shot to the bottom right of the net. Setting us in the lead 1-0. With Syd set up in goal, Beeville sent in another one of their players to take their second penalty kick of the shootout. She kicked too far right, causing the ball to hit the goal post and bounce back, leaving us in the lead. Up next, we had Kaitlyn step up to the penalty line. She set the score 2-0, increasing our lead. Beeville scored their first goal against us, making the score 2-1. Sofia was determined to keep the team in the playoffs when she scored a great goal and brought us up 3-1. To make an already intense game even better, if Beeville made this next goal in the shootout, they had a chance at a comeback. If they missed, that would set the Eagles at a lead that’s impossible to catch up to. Merecka, after playing an amazing game with multiple saves, was not about to cut her senior season short. Beeville’s player sent a great shot, but not great enough to get past Sydney. She deflected it out, winning Pleasanton the game, and it was only a few seconds before she was in the center of a hype circle her team had formed around her. The fans we’re beyond excited for the Eagles to continue on to round two.

 Their next playoff game was against Canyon Lake at Alamo Heights in San Antonio. 15 minutes into the game, Canyon Lake scored their first goal off a corner kick. This didn’t discourage our girls, if anything it just made them fight back harder. With only 8 minutes left in the first half, Osario sent a beautiful through-ball to Brandi Barnett (Junior), who was able to make a quick move around a defender and outrun her to score our first goal of the game. Going into halftime, the game was tied 1-1. This was where Bird decided to change up their plan and told the girls it was time to step up their offensive game. Canyon Lake scored their second goal with only 20 minutes left in the game. After a well-fought battle, with many great runs and plays, The Pleasanton Women’s Soccer Team’s season came to an end. It was an emotional night for this team that’s become a family, many tears were shed as a result of it being many of our senior’s last games of their high school career. “If I had to choose one word to describe this season, I think it would have to be “rollercoaster.” We had a lot of highs and lows but overall it was a ton of fun and I built friendships that I wouldn’t trade for anything,” said Osorio. It’s bittersweet to see them go, but the program is excited to see where future teams take them. “The biggest piece of advice I can give to upcoming classes is to enjoy it all, every single piece of it. It all flies by too fast to just let it float by. Four years’ worth of memories that I will cherish for a long time to come,” said Merecka. The 2020-2021 Pleasanton Women’s Soccer Team has had a memorable year and season, and the program is excited for it to only get better in the future.

Staff Spotlight: Ms. Garza

By: Libby Sanchez

Ms. Garza is our school’s CCMR (College, Career, and Military Readiness) Clerk. She manages our Dual Credit program, updates the counseling web page, organizes appointments for TSI, SAT, PSAT, and ASVAB testing, gives updates on scholarships, and schedules meetings with recruiters for students. Her job is to make sure students are prepared to take the correct route in their future, whether it be college or military. 

Pleasanton High School is the first school district Ms. Garza has worked for. She worked at her previous job for 16 years and became the IT director. She received many certifications in Networking, Electronic Medical Records, Practice manager System, Medical Coding, and Billing. These certifications made her the perfect fit for this position at our school. 

Although this job was not her career goal, “this was a contender because I love helping people and knowing I can help a student with their own goals is a great feeling,” Ms. Garza said. 

Covid- 19 has put a strain on how Ms. Garza does her job. This year, scholarship applications have to be submitted electronically instead of paper, college fairs must be virtual, and scheduling testing is an issue. Despite these complications, Ms. Garza has done an excellent job of keeping everything organized and running smoothly! You can catch her standing outside her door next to the counselor’s office with a smile through her mask, thank you for all you do Ms. Garza!

Pleasanton Softball

By: Libby Sanchez

The Pleasanton Lady Eagles Softball Team’s season has officially started. Last year’s season was unfortunately cut short due to Covid-19, and the girls are ready to step up to the pitch and pick up where they left off. “The majority of last year’s team is back and ready to continue what we started last season. We plan on being aggressive and adding some different options in our offensive game,” stated Coach Savage. 

The girls have been practicing new game strategies and plans since January. “So far the season has started off really well! Everyone is contributing and doing what is best for the team, so I can confidently say that if it continues, our team will only continue to get stronger. Everyone is working as hard as possible, and I know that all our hard work will pay off in the end,” stated Anai Gonzalez, sophomore. Both teams are proud of their progression shown at practices. On February 2nd, both Varsity and JV went up against Natalia in a friendly scrimmage. Despite Natalia’s hard-hitting offense, our Pleasanton Lady Eagle’s came out on top with good bats and great defensive stops. On February 5th, both teams scrimmaged Cornerstone. Scores were not kept during this game but it was a well fought match. Again on February 9th, both teams went up against Cotulla and brought home a win of 8-2. Their first official games were cancelled due to weather, but the girls are looking forward to adding new strategies to their game and having a great season!

Student Spotlight

By: Libby Sanchez

Frank Alaquinez is a freshman this year at PHS and is a member of the class of 2024. Frank was recommended by Coach Salinas, who states,“It’s rare to find students who understand the responsibility it takes to be a successful student-athlete. Frank has done just that, and he’s only a Freshman. He gets along with all his peers, he’s willing to tutor if other students need help, and he’s very positive with the other kids he interacts with. He is just a great student to have in class and I’m proud to be his math teacher this year.” 

Frank’s favorite subjects in school are algebra and principles of law. “I’ve always wanted to be a private investigator, there’ve been other careers that sound cool, but this one has always been there and sounds like the most fitting for me” Frank said. 

In Jr. High, Frank played sports such as soccer, football, and basketball. Outside of school, Frank played baseball for two years with a club team. Although he loved playing all of these sports, he decided to focus on playing just baseball in high school. “They were fun and I enjoyed the experience they brought, but baseball stood out to me the most,” Frank stated. Even with Covid-19 still complicating things, Frank is overjoyed to be able to have his freshman baseball season with this year’s team. 

A Team Above All. Above All a Team.

By: Libby Sanchez

The Pleasanton Women’s Soccer team picking up trash after the Merry On Main parade for community service.

The Pleasanton Women’s Soccer program is known as one of the most competitive and tight-knit teams in our district, having claimed the title of District-Champions ten times in twenty years of soccer at PHS. 

After winning the title of District-Champions for four consecutive years in a row, our Women’s Varsity Soccer team was going for the next title- Area Champions. Unfortunately due to the fallout of Covid-19, their winning streak of eight games was cut short. Many were distraught to see last years’ seniors play their last game of their highschool career, without even realizing it. “When I first heard the news of our season getting cancelled, I think I was in denial. We worked so hard, day after day, for it just to be ripped away from us. After it sank in that we’d never play with last years’ seniors again, I couldn’t help but feel defeated,” states sophomore Trinity Garcia. The Women’s Junior Varsity team also had their season cut down by one game, but was content with how well they improved throughout the season.

Although Covid-19 took away the team’s ability to train and practice together, it couldn’t take away their drive and determination to improve individually for the upcoming season. In order to stay in shape, girls were sent into quarantine with highly suggested, but not mandatory, daily workouts to partake in. “It’s all about having a good mentality,” states Coach Joseph constantly throughout the season and this rough time. This pandemic has not only taught these girls to adapt and overcome, but has also made this family’s bond even stronger. “Being able to see the chemistry we all have with each other is, to me, very inspiring and I think that from a non-soccer players point of view, it truly shows how close we all are and when we step on the field to play, nothing changes,”stated Brylee Miller, Sophomore. Tryouts were held November 31 through December 2 and teams were selected on December 3. 

Varsity is scheduled to scrimmage Harlandale this Friday, December 11. Both teams are scheduled for a scrimmage against Veterans Memorial on December 15, and have an upcoming tournament in early January. The Pleasanton Women’s Soccer team is ready to get the ball back in play!

Socially-distanced Thanksgiving

By: Libby Sanchez

Thanksgiving is a time when families travel long distances to be with their loved ones and celebrate together. It’s a day full of good times and usually ends with a turkey dinner and whatever sporting event is being broadcasted. Unfortunately, under the strict circumstances of Covid-19, this year traveling increases the risk of getting infected and spreading the virus to your loved ones. Although it may be hard to just stay home this year with immediate family, it may be the best idea. 

Staying home shouldn’t prevent you from having a great time with your family and doing yearly traditions. Try preparing annual recipes for family and neighbors, especially those at higher risk of catching Covid-19, and delivering them in a way that doesn’t involve direct contact with others. Maybe consider having a virtual dinner and sharing your recipes and visiting with the rest of your family that way.

Although, it’s understandable to still attend a large family dinner and celebrate like you do every year. If this is the route you plan on taking, make sure you and your family take the proper precautions. Bring along hand sanitizer and apply before and after touching someone, that way you and the person you’ve touched are less likely to be spreading germs. It’s also highly suggested to still be wearing a mask when not 6-feet apart, especially if you have family who travels from far places. This helps prevent your germs from spreading onto loved ones. Another great idea is to wipe down places you’ve sat at, that way germs are less likely to be passed onto clothes. 

Even though holidays aren’t the same this year because of the virus, it’s still important that everyone has a great time. That being said, we also need to make sure that we’re doing that in the safest way possible. Have a safe break! 

National Bullying Prevention Month

By: Libby Sanchez

Every October, communities and schools across the world join and work together in hopes of putting an end to all forms of bullying. During this month, many campaigns, protests, and new resources are aimed at raising awareness towards bullying. This aggressive and constant behavior should not go unrecognized. 

Bullying includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, or attacking someone physically or verbally. One of the most effective forms of bullying today is done online and is known as cyber-bullying. About 20% of students ages 12-18 have experienced bullying nationwide, and 15% reported to have been getting bullied online and harassed. Research indicates that consistent bullying can lead victims to suicidal behavior. All states have anti-bully legislation, but bullying is not illegal and continues to be a common occurrence.

Every week of October, the National Bullying Prevention committee releases new challenges around the world to help prevent bullying from occurring. Some of which include: making friends with someone you don’t know at school, standing up for others, and spreading kindness to those around you. This year they also ask that school’s and local businesses wear orange in hopes of sending a message to “stomp out bullying,”

This October, try your best to join in on these challenges and show your support to prevent bullying. If you or anyone else you know is going through bullying, reach out to a trusted adult and confide in them. Wear your orange and help create a world without bullying!

Staff Spotlight

By: Libby Sanchez

Mrs. Evans is one of the three hardest working counselors at Pleasanton High School. She not only has a positive impact on the students and adults, but our education system as well. Mrs. Evans takes her job very seriously and makes sure every student explores career options and stays motivated on their paths throughout high school. 

She attended PHS herself and after graduating from here in 1991, Mrs. Evans attended Texas State for three and a half years before graduating in 1994. She then came back to her hometown and started working in the family business once known as “Dowdy’s Store”, where she worked for 11 years after college. When word got around that the store may no longer be in business, Mrs. Evans had to start looking for more options here in Pleasanton. She wasn’t left with many, but the one that called out to her the most was indeed helping children at our local schools. She started as a math teacher at our Jr. High in 2006 and taught math for 4 years. A few years after teaching math, she became a counselor in both Pleasanton, Jourdanton, and Poteet before she settled here at the high school. 

Although counseling wasn’t always the goal for Mrs. Evans, she’s grown to love the job and the joy of helping students. “The counselor’s role is basically to be the students’ advocate, anything a student needs help with, I´m there”. Mrs. Evans has gone above and beyond to make sure this school year could be where it is now. From managing student schedules online instead of face-to-face, to college career plans for our seniors, Mrs. Evans does it all. This is her sixth year as a counselor at PHS and although she’s had to make major changes to how she does things this year, she’s come out the other side and made things work.