ROTC-May Edition

By: Brian Avery and Dev Patel

Welcome to the last ROTC article of the year! This month, the ROTC participated in many different activities, so let’s not waste any time and get right to it!
The first thing we will be covering is the ROTC Drill team! They went to nationals last month. Nationals were held in Daytona Beach, Florida! Cadet Major Courtney Cearly was recognized as the best overall driller at the event, so congratulations Courtney! The Eagle Battalion was a part of the Battle of the Flowers Parade for Fiesta in San Antonio on April 28th. They marched with other battalions from different ROTC programs, and Valdemar “Val” Herrera marched at the front, carrying the U.S. flag. The Battalion had a blast participating in the parade, and it was great to spend time with other ROTC members!

  We asked several ROTC members about their thoughts on the ROTC program as the year draws to a close. Val Herrera, a Command Sergeant Major who graduates this year, praised the development of the ROTC program, “My first year is nothing like what we have today. A lot of competitions we didn’t place at, but compared to now, we have trophies in the lunchroom, lobby. These last two years we have really excelled.” Cadet Staff Sergeant also praised the growth the ROTC program has experienced, “It makes a difference on our performance, and how well we do. For being a small town, we really are excelling.” Val agreed, stating that he believed they were being held to a higher standard, which contributed heavily to their success. Colonel Wynder believes that the ROTC program has only improved since he joined 4 years ago, the program better than it was the year before. “When Cadets want to be here, they get involved, and it becomes a family atmosphere.” When asked about the performance of the Cadets, he said “I know that no matter what a cadet comes with when they come here, I know they are going to reach their max potential because we challenge them and encourage them, and they meet their goals.” 

Val is heading out for active military duty whenever he graduates high school. Good luck to Val, and the rest of the ROTC program in all their future endeavors!!

Teacher Spotlight: Coach Salinas

By: Alexandra Garcia 

This May of 2023 the PHS journalism staff would like to recognize Coach Salinas as our Teacher Spotlight. We had the opportunity to interview him and get great feedback about his teaching and coaching life here at PHS.

Coach Salinas first graduated from just down the road at Jourdanton High School, and when it came time for college,… he says, “After bouncing around to a few different colleges and taking some time away to just work, I finally decided to return to UTSA and finish my degree in Kinesiology.”


Coach Salinas has now been teaching here at PHS for 10 years. When he first started he only taught geometry, but after 3 years he started teaching Algebra 1 along with geometry to the freshman class.

Coach Salinas was also known for coaching football and basketball for the first 7 years here at PHS but eventually decided to take a step away from coaching to be there for his wife and kids.

He was first inspired to teach because he wanted to impact students and our Atascosa County. 

He says “I grew up in this community and feel that I can relate to many students on this campus.”


Originally he wanted to become a coach before he wanted to become a teacher because of the impact his coaches had on his life. But not long after he says he believed he had fallen in love with teaching as the side job of coaching, and feels that he still can make a difference with every student he teaches along with students he coached. 

Coach Salinas says “When things are tough, I like to look at this Dr. Seuss quote which hangs in my room. It reads, “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better.  It’s not.” My goal here is to ensure that students feel like I care about who they are, besides being a student in my class.”


“I also really enjoy Algebra and working with Freshman students because I feel that I can make a stronger impact on their high school experience and understand expectations on our campus.”

He states that one of his favorite parts of teaching here is “seeing the growth of my students every year. Every student has something special about themselves, and I enjoy having a year to watch my students grow and find their way here at PHS.”

Even with teaching, Coach Salinas stays busy outside school as well. He says “Since I have kids, most of my weekends consist of kid activities, like the Zoo or Sea World. But when I have free time to myself, I enjoy playing golf with some friends/coworkers. I’m also in grad school to one day become an Assistant Principal/Principal, so that takes up most of my time outside of here.”

PHS is so fortunate to have Coach Salinas here and wish to thank him for all that he does!


By: Libby Sanchez

This month has been crazy busy for the Pleasanton High School ROTC group. They ended March with one of their biggest events, the Military Ball. They hosted it at Strawberry Pines in Poteet on March 25th, and had a magnificent turnout. Cadets did a phenomenal job planning this event and following through with a very successful night, full of laughs and a good time. They went as far as reaching out to a guest speaker, Colonel Phil Palmore, and inviting him to this event. His speech is something for these young cadets to hold on to for years to come. Students dressed to impress for the Ball, and many went home as winners of the Royal Court. Daylan Aguero and Taliah Garcia won Lord and Lady. Rion Ochoa and Leah Torres won Dutch and Dutchess. Wally Ramirez and Alyssa Castelar won Prince and Princess. The role of King and Queen was given to Valdemar Herrera and Natalia Jones. A huge accomplishment given to these cadets who deserve it!

The first weekend of April was a competitive one for the Eagle Battalion.. They took their all to the Central Catholic High School Military Skills meet against 16 JROTC programs from across the region. Krista Gutierrez took charge of the unarmed drill team and led them to finishing 2nd overall. They also finished 2nd and 3rd places in two sub categories of the competition. As for the male and female physical fitness teams, they both finished 1st place! Of the male team: Captain Valdemar Herrera, Roman Martinez, Rion Ochoa, and Jayden Herrera. Of the female team: Captain Alyssa Castelar, Yasmeen Diop, Abigail Hotchkin, and Lillian Krause. Both teams competed their hearts out and it definitely showed in the end! Honorable mention to the Academic Bowl team that finished 4th out of 18 teams. Alana Moczygemba, Hailey Yoho, Mason Outland, and Lane Ciomperlik did a phenomenal job representing our school!

The Pleasanton High School JROTC is honored to announce that one of our very own cadets, Krista Gutierrez, was selected to receive the Military Officers Association Scholarship! She worked extremely hard to gain this award of $1,000 to help with future endeavors. They look forward to seeing what amazing things Krista will accomplish!

Pleasanton High School’s JROTC program continues to stay on the move, participating and helping everywhere they can. On April 11th, the Eagle Battalion Color Guard presented the colors at the Special Olympics in Poteet. They continue to show their neverending honor in all that they do. 

One last congratulations to the most recent Eagle Battalion Cadets and NCO of the month. Cadet CPL Justine Resendez and CPL Madison Nunley were selected for Cadets of the month based on their hard work. Cadet Staff Sergeant Jealousey Oliva was announced NCO of the month of April. A huge congratulations to all and, keep up the good work JROTC!


Staff Spotlight

 By: Noah Ramos & Carol Sexton


For this month’s Staff spotlight Mrs. Rife was chosen out of our lovely staff and boy does she have quite the story to tell. For those who don’t know Mrs. Rife, she is a paraprofessional who helps out students by guiding them to a path that makes them happy as well as being a great listener to students’ concerns. Mrs. Rife didn’t always plan to work in education, in fact she wanted to go into the military but was dissuaded by concerns from her mother and decided not to go. When she started attending UTSA she wasn’t sure what she wanted to be and was undeclared until her junior year where life suddenly changed her plans. Mrs. Rife got married to a member of the military and off she went around the world with her husband for his job. 

Mrs. Rife has lived in many countries and a good amount of states as well such as Japan, Australia, England, Washington to name a few. When Mrs. Rife was in England, she remembers it being very beautiful and green where the weather went from feeling like summer for 2 weeks before suddenly turning cold the next day. The people she met during her time there were very friendly and loved to imitate our accent as well. Mrs. Rife was living in England when 9/11 happened and heard the announcement of what was happening through a radio and threw the military base she was at in a frenzy. While all this was happening Mrs. Rife volunteered to help make sure that parents could get their kids and making sure the kids were calm until everything had become safe once again. After the ordeal the next day Mrs. Rife was hired because of the actions she had shown during the situation with her ability to perform under pressure as well as having the best interest for the children. Her neighbors were very supportive during this dark time and brought over casseroles while checking up on her family to see if there was anything else they could do to help.

   When she was in Okinawa, Japan which is a set of islands that are very hot her time there was pleasant and the people appreciated when they were spoken to in Japanese and were a friendly bunch. Her kids had to take a culture class where they learned about their host country and a funny story was when she was on a train in Tokyo they were having trouble with directions when a kind couple helped them get to their destination. They lived in cement/steel reinforced buildings since typhoons would occur and their power was often lost so instead of snow days they would have typhoon days in Okinawa. When this happened her daughter would go to her  friend’s house and the brother would have the friend’s brother come to their house to have fun since when the typhoon would happen they had to stay in the house for 3-4 days. 

When moving around this much Mrs. Rife was worried that her children would be sad having to leave friends behind and have to frequently have to adapt to new environments so quickly. However, when she asked her children when they grew up they were actually quite happy since now not only do they have friends all around the world they talk to but they got to experience many things while moving everywhere. Now her son is studying contract law while her daughter has become an office manager which has made Mrs. Rife very proud. Mrs. Rife herself has become paraprofessional of the year and has met some of her old students. Many had changed since the last time she had seen them and her advice for current students now is to do what makes you happy. So, when you see her in the halls or in class make sure to thank her for all she does for our school here at PHS!

Start of the Contest Season

By: Ariana Johnson

The Percussion Ensemble playing for the judges

Mikayla Anguiano and Matthew Smith went to the Henry B. Gonzalez Center on February 9th, going up against many kids who also had the honor to have a spot in the All-State Band. Mikayla Anguiano got first chair in the Symphonic Band and Matthew Smith got fifth chair in the Concert Band. Matthew Smith said, “I spent one to two hours a day practicing, and a week before my audition I put in twenty-five hours of practice towards my music.” He also states that if you want to make it to the All State Band, “Don’t procrastinate until the last minute. I promise you won’t be able to put out your music in a week. I worked for nine months and it got me to state.” Matthew’s obstacle was a burnt out feeling when auditions were approaching. There’s only so much a person can take listening and playing the same music for nine months. It was hard for him but he kept on pushing through it and he can still play his audition music from the heart. Matthew went to the paper in anticipation of the results and saw that he got first chair. The feeling he got when he saw it was pure joy. 

Some students in the band went to TFME on February 10th, to see if they want to pursue a path of music once they graduate or become a conductor. Mr. Solis explained more on what TFME is about, “Texas Future Music Educators supports high school students who have an interest in a music education career. Chapters meet at least four times a year, and members provide service to their schools music programs and prepare for the entry into college music programs. Active members receive a Southwestern Musician magazine subscription, TFME patch and certificate, and a free registration to the annual TMEA Clinic/ Convention. Texas Future Music Educators is established by the Texas Future Music Educators Association to promote music education as a profession.”

Solo and Ensemble happened on February 18th at Southwest High School, and The Eagle Band earned 46 first-division medals at the UIL Solo and Ensemble Contest. 16 students  qualified for the Solo and Ensemble Contest in June. The people going for a solo are Michaela Anguiano, Matthew Smith, Kamryn Kendrick, Steven Minniear, and Dylan Vaughn. The Flute Trio which consists of Emily Bernal, Maria Huezo, and Pearl Sosa. The Brass Quintet consists of Monique Flores, Cesar Garica, Michael Lister, Conner Lopez, and Kevin Tucker. The Percussion Ensemble which consist of Nathan Din, Kamryn Kendrick, Steven Minnear, and Esteban Smith. 

The Symphonic and Wind Ensemble went to Pre-UIL at Lytle on February 23rd. The Symphonic Band got a 2 on their performance which is a good rating based on the scoring sheet, and the Wind Ensemble got a 1 which is a superior rating. Mr. Solis also stated, “Both bands did well at the Lytle contest. We received very positive comments in our preparation for our UIL contest on March 7th.” Both bands will be playing for UIL on March 10th at the Pleasanton Performing Arts Center, so good luck to both bands, and hope you do well. 



By: Alex Richter

Eagle Battalion Male PT Team’s participation in the Texas A&M Corpus Christi Islander Challenge on Saturday, February 25th.


Colonel Wynder is the senior army instructor of JROTC, and he is proud to be serving at PHS. This is his 4th year at the school after retiring from the army, “This is a job that I truly love, when I wake up in the morning, I’m ready to get here and get the job done.” states the senior instructor. His co-instructor is his Command Sergeant Nulles, and according to the Colonel himself, they make a good team.

JROTC Cadets recently have participated in the Alamo city striker skills Meet at Reagan high school in San Antonio. The girls physical fitness team consisting of  Alyssa Castelar, Yasmeen Diop, Leah Torres, Gabby Ramos, Alania Nethken, and Hailey Yoho finished third overall out of 13 local area schools.  The boys physical fitness team placed 2nd overall out of 20 schools. Team Members included Valdemar Herrera, Kenneth Alegria, Roman Martinez, Jaden Herrera, Jose Ramirez, and Rion Ochoa. On February 16th, The Eagle Battalion Physical Fitness Team enjoyed the day testing themselves at the Brennan High School Military Skills Meet in San Antonio.

The Eagle Battalion Male PT Team has also participated in the Texas A&M Corpus Christi Islander Challenge on Saturday, February 25th. The JROTC Eagle Battalion would like to give a thanks to those who came out to support their carwash at the Jourdanton NAPA. The $548 dollars raised will go toward their Military Ball coming up!

People may improve from being in JROTC, due to the impact that it may have on them. When interviewed, freshman Daylan Aguero states, “My experience with JROTC has been a fun, enjoyable experience. It benefited me by helping me build more confidence and make new friends.” Colonel Wynder and Command Sergeant Nulles do a good job of making sure that the students do a good job in leading the students on the right path. If you want a helpful leadership class, consider joining JROTC, it will do a great job of team-building and having leadership programs inflicted on students.

Make sure to visit the JROTC Facebook page linked in the PISD website to stay updated on their competitions and events!


Teacher Spotlight – Coach Schorsch

By: Savannah Valdez and Aaliyah Herrera

Coach Schorsch at the Llano baseball tournament winning on a lottery ticket.

For this month’s issue we had the opportunity to interview the one and only, Coach Schorsch! Coach Schorsch is an amazing geometry teacher here at PHS who has been teaching for 15 years. He has fulfilled many positions including assistant coaching, PE coach, and a fantastic role model for his students. 

Coach Schorsch started his career by attending many colleges including Texas A&M, Temple Jr college and A&M Corpus Christi, Where he played baseball and ran track. He started out in electrical engineering then moved on to sports management with a minor in business.

Coach Schorsch didn’t choose this job, instead it chose him. He was fresh out of college and didn’t have a set direction to go. He had a couple of friends who worked here at PHS and they decided it would be a good idea if he started coaching here, so they called him over and he gladly accepted. After coaching he moved up to being an assistant coach in PE, after this he decided he had an interest in teaching, so he switched to teaching geometry and now he has so many students and teachers that appreciate him. 

When Coach Schorsch mentioned he assisted in coaching we thought it would be best to ask him what his motto is for all his athletes. He replied by saying that “the only thing I want from my athletes is for you to always try to be your  best and you will succeed.” His motto has inspired many student athletes here at PHS!

Even though Coach Schorsch is always determined to work, outside of school he enjoys many outdoor activities including fishing, hunting, golfing, and even enjoys watching sports. Coach Schorsch is very outgoing and does not like to waste a minute of time in his daily life.

We are very appreciative to have Coach Schorsch here with us, he is a very important contributor to the PHS family and we look forward to seeing all he accomplishes throughout the years!  

Staff Spotlight: Mrs. Yarnell

By: Carol

For this month’s staff spotlight the PHS journalism staff selected Mrs. Yarnell. With this being said, we had the opportunity to interview her and ask her some questions about her journey here at PHS. Mrs. Yarnell went to high school at Worthington Kilbourne High School in Columbus, Ohio. Receiving her Bachelors of Music Education at Harding University and Masters of Music in Percussion Performance at the University of Central Arkansas. One of her favorite things about working with the students here at PHS is getting to see them grow from the time they were in junior high barley counting rhythms till when their seniors performing at state. It is very clear to see how passionate Mrs. Yarnell is about teaching and directing here at PHS. She told us that each year brings something new, something different. The seniors graduate and incoming freshmen are finding their places in the high school band. She states “ It’s really exciting to watch the band learn about each other and how to work together at the beginning of the year.” Every year she looks forward to seeing her upperclassman grow into leadership positions showing a newer maturity than in previous years. 

Mrs. Yarnell is a valued teacher here at PHS who cares deeply for her students and is always willing to do her best to make sure her students succeed. She has shown to be very committed and attentive. Her good deeds never go unnoticed, she’s making a huge impact on students  and we at PHS can’t wait to see what she has planned for the future.

Teacher Spotlight: Ms. Vargas

By: Noah Ramos & Alex Richter

Mrs. Vargas is a physics teacher for juniors, and in this issue of The Quill, we learned how her class is one that is definitely worth taking. She is very passionate about science and is an overall great teacher toward all students of hers. Our PHS Physics teacher has liked science and how it shapes the world around us, however she didn’t always feel this way. Like most of us, she was not a fan of the subject, but one biology class completely changed her perspective on science. “I just really fell in love with it,” she states.  To start her academic journey in higher education, the now Physics teacher studied archeology for a while where she worked 3 years after graduating. However, she felt it was time for a career change, therefore a switch in professions had her test the waters of becoming a pharmacist. She decided to study more about science in college at Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio. Next, she went to pharmacy school, studied hard, and worked for a while before deciding that being a pharmacist was not her true calling. Once again, our current Physics teacher went back to school to get her degree, but this time, for teaching. She decided to go back since she wanted to be able to “help others understand science and come to love it like she had”.  She had gone into a program where she became a science teacher, and while working, learned that she loved teaching science. Surprisingly, the first school she started to teach at was here in Pleasanton. During this time, there was a freeze on teachers in Texas. However, she graduated and was offered a job here after her second year and felt more than happy to work here. She first started teaching at the junior high which lasted for 7 years before moving over to the high school where she has worked for 4 years. “I had Mrs. Vargas as a teacher at the junior high my 8th grade year and I can easily say that she is the most patient teacher I know. A lot of my class was not as mature as we are now, and it was really great having her as a teacher again my junior year, getting a second chance to show her we’ve grown, and her patience with us has always been my favorite thing about her,” states Libby Sanchez, senior. So, if you see Mrs. Vargas around school make sure to show your appreciation for all the hard work she does for us here at PHS. Thank you for staying with us all these years Mrs. Vargas and to the many more we have ahead.


Student Spotlight: Joshua Yoho

By: Myame Lara and Jayden Palacios 

To start the new year off, the journalism staff decided the only appropriate student spotlight should be none other than sophomore, Joshua Yoho. Joshua Yoho is involved in many activities at PHS, some of which include band and track and field. Two members of the journalism staff got the chance to talk to Joshua Yoho and find out some more interesting facts about him!

Although it’s only Joshua’s second year in high school, he’s become a very active participant in PHS extracurricular activities. Joshua enjoys playing the saxophone, which he’s been playing for four years now and was taught by his favorite teacher, Mr. Solis. Josh expressed that Mr. Solis was his favorite teacher because, after all this time, he continues to teach Joshua new things. Being a sophomore, he has gotten the chance to meet new people and this has become one of his favorite things about high school! Along with being in band and track, Josh also enjoys building things in his free time. After high school, he plans on going to college at either Texas A&M or UT Austin for engineering, which we hope will work out for him!

The Journalism staff is grateful for the opportunity to get to know more about Josh, and we look forward to witnessing his future accomplishments. Pride, Pride!

Staff Spotlight: Ms. Summers

By: Savannah Valdez & Aaliyah Herrera


For this month’s staff spotlight we chose Ms. Summers, a wonderful health science teacher here at PHS. She is a very passionate and inspiring teacher, who is always so full of joy and determined to put a smile on students’ faces. This is why we are glad to honor her for this month’s issue!

This year is Ms. Summers first year here at PHS and she is so grateful to be a part of our community. With this being said, we had the opportunity to interview her and ask her some questions about her journey here at PHS so far. Our first question was “Why did you choose this job position here at PHS?” She replied “By trade, I have the desire to help and care for people. In doing so, I found that I love to teach and actually had an act for it. I chose this particular position because I get to be in both nursing and the education role. I hope to help students pick a path and assist in reaching that milestone.”

Ms. Summers mentioned that she loves to teach and also is dedicated to helping her students achieve their goals, so we then asked her, “What is your favorite aspect about being a part of PHS?” She stated that her favorite aspect about being a part of PHS is the connections she has made with her students and that she aspires to create and maintain a safe and positive environment for students whether they attend her class or not.

Considering her new position this year, we asked Ms. Summers, how she is liking it so far? She replied saying, “Some days I have absolutely no clue what day it is or what I am doing but I LOVE it.” With that being said we were curious as to what she does in her free time, when she isn’t helping her students. Our next question was, “What are your hobbies outside of school?” She said that her favorite thing to do besides helping her students is to make memories with her baby girl, Avery.

Ms. Summers is a very special teacher here at PHS who cares deeply for her students and is always willing to do her best to make sure not only her students, but herself succeeds. She has shown to be very committed and caring. Your good deeds never go unnoticed, she’s making a huge impact on us and we can’t wait to see what you have planned for the future.


By: Carol

The Pleasanton Eagle football team played the Floresville Tigers, on October 28th with home field advantage. The Eagles took the win at this home conference game by a score of 35-14. The following Friday, November 4th The Eagles played and won their last home game against the Beeville Trojans in overtime by a score of 34-28. Entering the first round of play-offs, the Eagles were ready to dominate. Held in Corpus Christi, the Eagles played the Tuloso-Midway Warriors. Within the first 2 quarters the Eagles were leading with a 14-0 score showing no mercy as they continued on. By the third quarter the Eagles had put 28 more points on board which was quickly followed with a single 6 point touchdown made by Tuloso-Midway. In the last few minutes of the game our competitors decided to come and play adding an additional 14 points to the board by the end of the fourth quarter. Despite Tuloso’s hard fought efforts, the Eagles came out with a score of 42-20 advancing them to round 2 of play-offs against the Boerne Greyhounds. For the next week the Eagles prepped for the fight of their lives. On November 18th the Eagles traveled to Alamo Heights Stadium ready for the 7 pm kickoff. First quarter the Greyhounds came out fast with a 1 yard touchdown within the first few minutes of the first quarter. However, Eagles pushed back with a 7yd touchdown only minutes later only to be scored on once again by the Greyhounds ending the quarter with a 7-14 score. Within the second quarter Pleasanton put up another 7 points followed by another touchdown from the Greyhounds. With a 5 yard pass in the third quarter by the greyhounds quaterback they were leading 40-14 and finished the third quarter with a 43-14 lead. By the fourth quarter the eagles were feeling it but were no where close to giving up, they weren’t going down without a fight. Fourth quarter, Boerne had 1st down, with 11 minutes to go, and the ball on Pleasanton’s 12-yard line. The Greyhounds completed a 12 yard pass for a touchdown and PAT bringing the score to 50-14. Pleasanton had a 1st down with 6 minutes to go, and the ball was on Boerne’s 41-yard line. The Eagles completed a mighty 36-yard pass for a touchdown and a good PAT adding another 7 points to the board. With four minutes remaining the Eagles were giving it their all. Despite our team’s efforts, Bernoe came out with a 50-21 score advancing them to the next round and putting our season to an end.

There is no denying that our team was something special, these guys came out every Friday and fought hard in the name of our school. More than anything though this was a family, these were brothers, and the truth of the matter it was some of their last times on field. I had the opportunity to ask one of our seniors, number 78, Joe-Manuel Ortiz about his experiences as a senior on the team and what he wishes for them moving forward. This year the Eagles had a tough schedule but they played as hard as they could and Ortiz can say he was happy with the season the team had. Partly through the season, Ortiz was out of injury and he told us “ I got past my injury by working with our amazing training staff, they helped me get better and back out on the field.” There is no doubt that the ending of every year is difficult and even more so for seniors who will be moving on to the next chapters of their lives, Ortiz saying, “The hardest part of leaving this team is the memories we had together and all the time we spent together as a family.”  

Football teaches many lessons to players, and our amazing head football coach, Coach Liska can say he has seen this firsthand. Coach Liska saw the potential in his players and pushed them to be the best they could be this season despite the hecticness that came with it. “I knew we could be really good, and I knew we had the opportunity to meet all the goals we had set, our team had the opportunity to make district and play-offs,” Coach Liska. Moving into next year the team plans to improve upon discipline and team comradery. For seniors leaving Coach Liska hopes the lessons learned in football will become things they can implement in life as they grow into careers and become future fathers and husbands. For returning players it’s the work that they put in now that will determine the season next year and the coaching staff is eager to see these boys make the best out of every year in football. When asked what would be the hardest part of this season ending Liska told us “Finialty, you see the seniors walk out the door for the last time, that’s always difficult, taking up equipment is never fun, and seeing a kid walk out the door that you’re not gonna get to work with anymore and hope that the life lessons you’ve shared carry on.” 

Good luck to those graduating; your impact left a mark on this program, and we all wish you the best in life.

The Historic Season

By: Libby Sanchez

It is no secret that the volleyball team this year dominated their whole season, then continued to dominate in playoffs all the way to round 4. After finishing first in district with a 12-0 record, the Lady Eagles were ready to play their hearts out in whatever came their way in playoffs. Round one took place on October 31st, leading many people to skip the holiday of Halloween to watch the girls succeed and advance. For round one of playoffs they were up against Orange Grove, who placed fourth in their district with a 7-5 record. Our girls started off strong in the first set, taking the win 25-14. Working hard the second set, they took it 25-19. With one more set to advance to round two, our girls were determined and took the final third set 25-17. It was astonishing to see the girls do what they do best and take this team in only three sets, their hardwork was paying off. Round two took place on November 4th against Bishop, who placed third in their district with a 7-4 record. The first set started off rocky for the Lady Eagles when they fell short to Bishop 25-19 in the first set. But our girls refused to back down without a fight, and used losing the first set as a wake up call. They came back and won the next three sets 25-13, 25-19, and 25-12. They had the gym packed with green and spirit as they celebrated their advancement to round three. The next round took place on November 8th against Calhoun, who placed 1st in their district, much like us, with a 11-1 record. Our girls were buzzing with the anticipation of only being three games away from state. Much like the previous round, our girls deterred in the first set and fell short 25-22. These girls worked so hard all season, and they had the gym loaded with their biggest supporters, and they were not losing. The next sets came fast, with many good saves and kills from our girls. Our girls claimed the next three sets with scores of 25-21, 25-17, and 25-22. And if Coach Aguirre happened to get a red card between the chaos, well nobody is gonna speak of that, we defend our favorite grumpy grandpa. The sight of The Lady Eagles falling to the floor in sheer excitement for winning is a sight nobody will forget. There is no team that deserved it more! The next three days here at PHS, everyone was buzzing and on their toes thinking about round four. Our girls were only two games away from state, and many believed that’s the direction they were headed. Round four took place against Bellville, who placed first in their district, with a record of 12-0, exactly like ours. We knew if anything, this was going to be the girls toughest match yet. Blossom Athletic Center was packed to the brim with Pleasanton fans, many students getting signed out earlier in the school day to go support their classmates. Nerves were clear, but so was our spirit as the crowds cheered for our girls. Falling short in the first set 25-22 wasn’t something we wanted, but hopes were still high as we knew our girls were common to make excellent comebacks. We were right, as our girls came back the second set 25-17, setting us to tie at 1-1. The third set took us by surprise when Bellville stepped up their game and took the third set 25-12. Now down 2-1 in round four of playoffs, two games away from state, the pressure on our girls was high. In the fourth and final set, after our girls gave it their absolute best, we fell short 26-24 to Bellville. 

It’s hard to watch it all come to an end in just a few minutes, but the 2022-2023 Lady Eagles Volleyball team is definitely one to be remembered. They advanced farther than they had in a long time, and many students and parents are going to miss watching this group of girls play together as seniors graduate. Though, for two of our graduating seniors, they will be advancing and continuing to play the sport of volleyball at a D1 level. Huge congratulations to Sadie McAda who is committed to Southern Mississippi University for both Volleyball and Beach Volleyball, and Victoria Urbanzyk who is committed to Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio. Another difficult goodbye for the volleyball program this year is none other than Coach Aguirre himself. The man known to be yelling on the sidelines, but all out of the goodness of his heart as he coached the sport he loved. He’s taught these girls so much throughout his years, and we are sad to see our favorite grumpy grandpa leave. Though his absence will leave a hit on the program, we are excited to see the program’s future in the hands of Coach Bunch. Someone who was trained under Coach Aguirre, and someone with such a big heart for the sport. There are no doubts she will continue to lead this program in the right direction, and we wish her absolute success. We wish all coaches and players the best of luck next year, and to the graduating seniors of The Lady Eagles Volleyball team, we wish y’all the greatest with your future endeavors!

First Sound of the Holiday Spirit

By: Ariana Johnson

Both bands playing at the Performing Arts Center

Last year the band didn’t make it to Area, so they made a resolution to make it to Area this year and they did. Saturday, October 29th, at Calallen High School, the Pleasanton Mighty Eagle Band tried their hardest at Area and they placed 21st out of 36th bands.

As to represent the senior class in band for all of the hard work they put in the last four years, they all gave their sashes to an educator that had impacted their lives. Many of the educators were surprised by this, but also really happy that they were the ones chosen out of the many educators that each senior had in their lives.

Mr. Solis wanted to do something different when deciding which students should be put in which band. The band directors gave all the kids what they were going to play for them and then tested each student separately. When asked why they decided to change how things worked, he said, “We felt that the audition process was a fairer way of deciding who was in each group. It also allows for students to challenge if they feel that they are not in the correct band placement.”

On November 12th, The Pleasanton Jazz Band and Drumline perform at the Fall Festival in the Pleasanton High School Courtyard. All of the students that went and played at the Fall Festival looked like they had a lot of fun there. Mr. Solis stated, “The Jazz Band and Drumline were very excited to be a part of the festival and look forward to performing at the event again next year.”

December is a very busy month for many students in band. On December 3rd, The Mighty Eagle Band played at the Merry on Main Parade and they played “Hark the Herald Angels Sing”, “O Come All Ye Faithful”, and “Jingle Bells”. They also got the 1st place plaque for the Best Marching Band. On that same day many band kids went to Lytle High School  to try to get into the All Region Band and All Region Jazz Band. Mr. Solis stated from all of the band directors, “We are looking forward to having a great representation from our band program. We will have over 40 students auditioning and we hope to have a large number of students earn spots in the All Region band.”

On December 5th, the Symphonic band and Wind Ensemble had their Christmas concert at the Performing Arts Center. The Symphonic band played, “Wintertide”, “Christmas Canon”, “Holly and the Ivy”, and “Holiday Swing Along”. After the Symphonic band played, Miss. Yarnell came out and said, “Since PHS added a new band director. I had the time to do a percussion class with nine members in it, and we worked on Drumline music and worked on an assemble for the Fall/Winter concert. We will also be having one in the Spring concert.” After Miss Yarnell talked the percussion ensemble played “Deck the Halls”, and “Christmas Holiday” which was a mixture of many different Christmas songs. Once the Wind Assemble was ready they started their part of the concert with “The Ukrainian Bell Carol” then went to “Joy to the World”, “Silent Night”, and “All I Want for Christmas is You”. The Symphonic band returned to perform with the Wind Assemble. They played and surprised the audience by singing, “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.”

After the winter concert is done the Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble Band will be learning their UIL music. The band directors have music in mind for each band to play. Mr. Solis said, “ We plan to challenge both groups with exciting and more difficult selections for this year’s UIL contest. By then the band directors will know what music each band should play. By what Mr. Solis stated, “Each year we have a number of musical selections in mind for the groups, but it always depends on the strengths and weaknesses for each group. We should be able to see where each group is in the weeks leading up to the Christmas concert.” 

The band has made many memories this year that they will remember, even after high school. They also enjoyed their time together with their band directors when the students do funny things, or get side-tracked with another conversation then the one that they were on about. The band has had a great year whether it was in marching or it was on stage, each and every student had made new friends, and became one big family in the end.


Teacher Spotlight: Mrs. Leal

By: Noah Ramos, Alex Richter, and Libby Sanchez

For this issue of the Quill, we had the pleasure of interviewing Mrs. Leal, our very own algebra teacher and track coach here at PHS. Mrs. Leal is an alumni of our school, and not only that, but she is a track legend. Her name currently holds 1st place records in 100m and 300m hurdles, heptathlon, high jump, and she is ranked in many more events from her high school days. She is very much looked up to by the track team and is definitely the most qualified for the position. 

After she graduated from Pleasanton High School in 2015, Mrs. Leal went on to run track at the D1 level with the University of Houston. There, she learned the balance between her education and athletic career, and became the very best student-athlete she could be before graduating in 2020. Before joining us here at PHS, Mrs. Leal worked at an office job, but felt she wasn’t making the impact she wanted to. When a position here opened up, she jumped every hurdle in her way to get it (pun intended). High school was a great time for Mrs. Leal, and her drive and determination led her to want to help future students strive for their best. This is her 2nd year with us, and she has already made a huge impact on our student-athletes. “She’s the greatest, she’s always in a great mood and it truly reflects on us, she pushes us to do our absolute best in everything that we do,” said Emree Adamitz, junior. 

PHS is very lucky to have someone like Mrs. Leal here on campus. An athlete and teacher like herself inspires many students to do better, to be better. We hope Mrs. Leal sticks with our school for many more years to come, she truly is making a difference here. Make sure and return Mrs. Leal’s welcoming smile whether it’s in the hallway or at the track!

Student Spotlight: Emily Morales

By: Savannah Valdez and Aaliyah Herrera

For this month’s student spotlight we chose Emily Morales. Emily is a sophomore here at PHS who is involved in many activities. She is a very kind and generous person. Which is why we were very excited to interview her for this month’s issue!

We interviewed Emily and asked her some questions. One of the questions we asked was what school events Emily participated in. She had replied “I am in softball and I also participate in UIL, I do the math portion.” We then asked her more about softball regarding what positions she plays and how long she’s been playing. She replied saying “I play first base, and I really started getting into it because of my sister, but I started playing my freshman year.” 

Emily mentioned that she was in UIL this year and that she participates in the math portion. She seems to take pride in this subject, so we then asked her what is a school subject she takes pride in. She responded saying “Math because I’m best at it.” We then asked, who her favorite math teacher was or is currently, and what she remembers about them? She answered saying “I really don’t have a favorite but this year, I have Mr. Roberson as a teacher. He is very funny and nice. Last year I also had Mrs. Leal and she was such a sweet teacher.” 

Aside from math, Emily mentioned that she is interested in going to college after school. Emily plans to attend college at the University of Mary Hardin Baylor and pursue her career going into real estate. Emily was a strong Student Spotlight candidate for this month’s issue because she is very determined and has a bright future ahead of her. Emily is just a Sophomore and takes pride in all that she does. We look forward to seeing all that you will accomplish!


Staff Spotlight: Mrs. Delgado

By: Jaelyn Morales

This month’s staff spotlight is about our wonderful Counselor Office Secretary, Mrs.Delgado, who has been working at PHS for the past 4 years and has helped our counselors out tremendously with transcripts, counselors’ calendars, scheduling appointments for counselors, and students coming and going in the office. As a counselors aid, I see Mrs. Delgado every morning in the office and she is always on her toes helping students with anything they need, answering phone calls, and assisting the counselors all while having a smile on her face and positive energy that always makes my morning.

Before joining the PHS staff, Mrs. Delgado worked in retail for 9 years before deciding to get her bachelors in business management and attended the University of Phoenix and Azusa Pacific University in California, both online, but since her husband was in the military and gone on duty, she decided to start working at an elementary close to home and then got a job at her daughters’ high school. Mrs. Delgado really enjoyed working with little kids at the elementary school and thought it was gonna be less fun working at the high school, but once she moved schools, she realized she actually loved working with the big kids. “I thought it was gonna be less fun, but y’all keep me on my toes just as much, just a different kind,”Mrs. Delgado said. 

When I asked what her favorite part about working at PHS was, Mrs. Delgado said it was interacting and helping the kids. Mrs. Delgado is always very busy at her desk with many different tasks on her list, yet she manages to get them done while always putting the students first. If you see Mrs. Delgado on campus, make sure to thank her for all she’s done for us and congratulate her on being this month’s staff spotlight. 

Athlete Spotlight: Kassidy Vickers


By: Myame Lara


With our fall sports coming to an end, the PHS Journalism staff decided to make this month’s athlete spotlight a dedicated, talented, and all-around great student at PHS. Kassidy Vickers is someone who fits into all those categories like a puzzle piece! I got the chance to interview Kassidy to ask her more about her athletic history, and just to learn more about her! 


Junior athlete Kassidy Vickers participates in the sports: cross country, track, and tennis, which she’s been in for about 5 years now. Sometimes juggling so many extracurricular activities can be stressful, but Kassidy stays motivated with the help of her parents, who are her “biggest supporters!”  Recently, Kassidy went state bound for cross country and placed 49th out of 152 girls. Kassidy’s advice to other athletes is, “Never give up, and always do you!” 

After high school, Kassidy plans on going to college and majoring in animal science, though she is not yet sure about running in college. Although Kassidy enjoys running and playing tennis, she also enjoys organizing things and getting extra practice in during her free time. “Trying to get better helps motivate me,” stated Kassidy.


Kassidy’s advice to other athletes is, “Never give up, and always do you!” I am very glad to have gotten the opportunity to interview Kassidy Vickers and get to know more about her. The journalism staff, along with everyone else at PHS, is excited to see what Kassidy has in store for her spring sports, and the seasons to come! Pride, Pride!

Marching On Up

By: Ariana Johnson

Anticipating the upcoming marching competition, Mr. Solis stated “I worried the most about overworking our band members. The band has added additional sectional rehearsals this year and I know many of our students participate in other activities as well.” 

Those extra rehearsals have paid off as The Mighty Eagle Band’s weekly performance at the football games have improved by the week, as well as the marching contest. On October 1st, the band went to the Judson Rocket Review and they placed 5th and were right behind 4 state qualifying bands. The same day they also went to a second competition at Harlandale HS and they placed 2nd out of three bands and got a trophy for their hard work.

The third and final practice contest was the US Bands Ludwig Musser Classic, and the Eagle Band was competing against 4-5A bands and the Mighty Eagle Band placed 3rd. Mr. Solis had started this year with high expectations for the band, and they will continue to set the bar even higher so they can reach new heights as they progress throughout the year. “Our main goal this year is to earn a 1st Division “Superior” rating at UIL and advance to Area competition.” The band directors are really proud of the band as they were one of the only two bands that got all ones from each judge. Pearsall is a state-qualifying band and Pleasanton was able to match their performance with equal talent.

The Mighty Eagle Band will be going to Calhoun on October 29th, for Area and are positive that they will make it to finals at Area as they have whole band has been working hard and know where they want to go.

As Marching Band is happening, Jazz Band has been practicing their music and they have a full schedule planned ahead of them. He stated, “We have had an average of 13-15 jazz band members every year. I’m happy to say this year we have 22 in our Jazz Band. We have a full schedule of performances scheduled for the Jazz Band. In addition to these performances, we are planning to take our group to compete at a Jazz Festival in the Spring.”

We wish you all good luck to both the Marching Band and the Jazz Band, PHS Journalism staff hope that both bands will do great at their contest and performances. Pride, Pride!


State Bound for the FFA

By: Kassidy Vickers

Our FFA chapter has had a strong start to their season as they began with fall Career Development Events (CDE’s). The first contest our students attended was the Area X Multi-District Fall CDE’s contest for their district competition on September 28. Kinsley Barker represented the Homesite Team and took home 1st place. The Land team also took home a 1st place win with Victoria Urbanczyk leading the team, coming in 2nd, then Saide McAda- 3rd, Blair Warden- 6th, William Turner- 8th, Jerry Chessher- 9th, and Corgin King- 10th. The Plant ID also did great, getting 2nd place overall with Brady Stevens leading Pleasanton with a 3rd place finish, followed by Paige Read- 9th, Carlos Cruz- 10th, McAda Rutherford- 11th, Chloe Nieschwitz- 12th, and Mark Thornton- 24th. Finally, the Range team finished 4th overall as a team with Rene Castillo being first for Pleasanton in 18th, followed by Austin Dinscore- 19th, Evelynn Caraway- 23rd, Matthew Guedea- 27th, and Wyatt Tom- 33rd. All of the teams advanced to area.
Their second competition took place at Hondo in preparation for area. The Homesite team got 6th place with Kinsley Barker coming in 24th and Kendal Crouch coming in 31st. The Land team got 6th place as well with Texas Townsend coming in 15th and first for Pleasanton. He was followed by Jerry Chessher- 27th, Blair Warden- 31st, Ashton Barker- 37th, and Corgin King- 46th. Carlos Cruz represented the Plant ID team, coming in 17th and Rene Castillo represented the Range team, coming in 32nd.
The FFA teams’ third contest was area. The Homesite team finished off their season with a team placing 10th place. Kinsley Barker finished 24th which was first for Pleasanton, followed by Presley Crouch- 34th, Kendal Crouch- 61st, and Baile Saenz- 66th. Land had an excellent performance and came in 2nd place overall as a team. Texas Townsend came in 1st place for Pleasanton and 1st overall in the contest. Following Texas was Sadie McAda- 3rd, Victoria Urbanczyk- 21st, and William Turner- 31st. Plant ID also did great, coming in 3rd overall. Paige Read came in 1st for Pleasanton and 4th overall. Following Paige was Brady Stevens- 6th, Carlos Cruz- 8th, and McAda Rutherford- 13th. The Range team had a great performance as well and got 6th overall as a team. Austin Dinscore came in 16th place, followed by Rene Castillo- 19th, Evelynn Caraway- 21st, and Matthew Guedea- 37th. As a result of this contest, the Land, Plant ID, and Range teams all qualified for state.
We interviewed Evelynn Caraway who is a member of the Range team and is also the president of the Pleasanton FFA chapter. Evelynn said that she chose this contest because, “It is really interesting to me and I get to learn a lot of new things about plants and other related things in the process.” Evelynn also likes to be a very active member in the FFA community and tries to get involved in every way she can. We also interviewed Mr. Stubenthal who is the agriculture teacher in charge of leading the Range team. When asked about his thoughts on the progress of his team, Mr. Stubenthal said that, “I have seen a lot of improvement. I see that they are starting to be able to identify the plants. We still have a lot of work to do identifying some of the characteristics though. . . . I’m excited, I guess that’s what I could say about the progress.” Mr. Stubenthal has high hopes for his team and is excited for the spring when the contest picks back up again.
All of these FFA members did an outstanding job and put in a lot of work to get to where they are now in their contest. We wish all the qualifying team the best of luck as they advance on to the state contest in the spring.

Teacher Spotlight

By: Alexandra Garcia 

For this October’s Teacher Spotlight we got to visit with the one and only, Coach Joseph. 

Coach Joseph, while being a cross country assistant coach and head soccer girls coach, is also a very excellent teacher. Many states that he “makes learning more understandable and comprehensible.”

Coach Joseph graduated from Bandera High School where he was inspired by his own soccer coach to become a teacher and coach as well, he says the coach was not only great with the soccer players, but with everyone. He then went on to graduate from Schreiner University in Kerrville, Texas, Where he received a teaching degree. Coach Joseph is always up for a challenge and that’s what motivates him to teach. “Math is by far one of the most challenging subjects. It is a subject that generally speaking students dislike and struggles with the most.” He also says “I then put myself in a position where I can elevate and make learning math a little less miserable for the students.” One of the ways Coach Joseph enjoys teaching is being in front of the whiteboard instructing, and calling on students for answers to bring the class together and get them out of their comfort zone to build up a comfortable learning environment for all students. 

One of his favorite parts about teaching is “the lessons that happen outside the content.” He enjoys being able to have genuine conversations with students, and when the students are able to open up about things that may be troubling them and they come to him for guidance. He liked that he is trusted enough to give advice and answers that will lead them in a positive direction. One of the main aspects of how understanding and motivational Coach Joseph is that he wants to see his students succeed and make it far in their education, and in life. He wants them to pass their TSIs, and prepare them for Algebra 2 or College Algebra. He does not want his students to have to deal with struggling through semesters. 

Apart from school, Coach Joseph has very limited time. A hobby of his is lifting weights, which happens to be his favorite. He enjoys watching soccer and UFC but other than that his free time is pretty booked with him pursuing an MBA. 

With that being said, we here at PHS are very grateful for such an inspiring and hardworking teacher. We thank Coach Joseph for all the time, helpful skills, and work he puts in here at PHS, it does not go unnoticed. 


Student Spotlight: Carlos Cruz

By: Brian Avery & Letizia Perrino

This month for Student Spotlight, we chose Carlos Cruz. He is only a freshman, yet he is involved in many parts of school, from the student council to athletic events. We got the opportunity to interview him and ask him some of our questions.

Carlos defines himself as someone who wants to be better than they were yesterday, focusing on his self-confidence and social skills. His high school experience has just started but the activities he is involved in are keeping him busy and excited. He is an officer in FFA, so he competes and represents his chapter while helping his fellow members with other officers. He is preparing for leadership in the student council, as he’s shadowed and watched older representatives as they work. He’s involved in soccer and tennis, constantly trying to be better than he was yesterday. He doesn’t stop once he leaves the school building as he helps referee the local TCYSA games, helping younger kids discover their love for sports, and he still has time to pursue his interests, such as playing guitar.

Carlos has many years left in high school, but he has already been touched by our amazing staff. One of the teachers he named Dr. Ayers, saying “He’s always been understanding, and is always trying to help me out.” Many students have positive feelings towards Carlos, one said “Carlos is kind and down to earth, he’s just Carlos.” As we finished our interview, we asked him what his advice would be to himself a year ago, and he said that he would tell himself to focus on what makes him happy and not worry so much about what others think of him. Thank you Carlos for your time, and we look forward to seeing what you do!


Staff Spotlight: Mr. Hinojosa

By: Myame Lara

This school year, Pleasanton High School welcomed Mr. Hinojosa as one of our new assistant principals. With him being newly introduced to our campus, the journalism staff decided he was the perfect fit for this month’s staff spotlight! I got the opportunity to interview Mr. Hinojosa and get to know our new assistant principal!

Mr. Nick Hinojosa is a graduate of both Incarnate World Nursing School, where he got his RN degree, and Texas A&M San Antonio, where he obtained his teaching degree, and his admin’s degree. After graduating with his admin’s degree he went on to be a teacher, and later an assistant principal, at Pleasanton Elementary School. Mr. Hinojosa is now Pleasanton High School’s very own assistant principal.

Since Mr. Hinojosa previously worked with younger students, transferring to the high school was definitely a change. Mr. Hinojosa quotes, “Working with [you] teenagers and soon-to-be adults has been a good transition.” Along with Mr. Hinojosa, Mr. Portillo was also introduced to our district this year. Mr. Hinojosa has gotten the chance to navigate alongside him during their first year at PHS, and gain great advice from returning teachers and administrators at PHS!

Pleasanton High School is very grateful for Mr. Hinojosa and we are looking forward to what he has in store for our campus. If you see Mr. Hinojosa on campus, don’t forget to thank him for all he does! Pride, Pride!


Farewell Mrs. Higginbotham

By: Libby Sanchez & Shyanne Carol

The month of October is filled with joy and excitement with all the events it holds. The month of homecoming week, our first homecoming dance, and pink out. Not many things could ruin the vibe October gives off, except for one. After 12 years of hard work at PHS, we bid goodbye to one of our favorite front office ladies, Mrs. Higginbotham. 

Mrs. Higginbotham was the principal’s secretary and was in charge of many tasks in that position. Always scheduling appointments for the principal, keeping tabs on files, and coordinating overall workflow and activities through the central office. It will be a huge adjustment getting used to her absence, but I have no doubt we can make that adjustment. 

One of Mrs. Higginbotham’s most admirable qualities was her willingness to listen to student concerns. Any student needing to meet with the principal would first go through Mrs. Higginbotham, and she always made sure students were prepared to give their best version of themselves. 

Though she will be greatly missed here at PHS, especially her welcoming smile when walking into the office, PHS is grateful to have had someone like her leave such a great impact on students and staff members. We wish her the absolute best retirement, and we hope she comes back to see some of her biggest fans graduate in May!