Updated: May 24
Those who play sports in high school are STUDENT-athletes. Maintaining a decent GPA is key in order to be eligible to play sports, and the Minarets varsity girls soccer team has done just that. They have become the first Minarets team to place first in the CIF (California Interscholastic Federation) Central Section academic competition for their respective sport. This victory pairs nicely with their recent win in the first round of Division 6 playoffs.
Though there have been other Minarets teams that have made the top five for their respective sports, no one has made it to the number one position. With a team GPA of 3.81, these girls beat every team in all divisions throughout the Central Section. To qualify for this award, Zamora worked closely with counselor Jessica Chacon to submit all the required paperwork to the CIF.
According to athletic director Karra Zamora, the team came in first out of 123 varsity girl soccer teams in the section. The girls will not receive individual awards, but Zamora will accept a banner at an upcoming Central Section meeting which Minarets will then put on display. Zamora adds that the award and banner will “show that our girls soccer team doesn't just display excellence on the field, but in the classroom too.” Zamora described her actions and emotions upon hearing word of this victory as “initially...shedd[ing] tears of happiness and pride…[which] made my day!” adding that she has “an overall sense of pride for these girls and look[s] forward to what the future holds for them, as individuals, and as a team.”
Prior to winning this award, Nicole Barrios, a team captain and senior, stated that she “didn’t know it was a thing” but is glad that the team won it. Barrios said that it would be a good morale booster for the team in addition to making the playoffs. Senior Anija Saldivar says that she “uses sports as motivation to keep grades up.” Both Barrios and Saldivar have GPAs above 3.0. Senior Samantha Clay says the team maintains good grades “by encouraging each other to keep up on school work and by helping each other get our work done.” Coach Michele Shattuck instills in the girls a school before sport mentality.
Congratulations to the varsity girls soccer team on maintaining fantastic grades and making history at Minarets!
Another congratulations is in order for the team: After their victory last night against Firebaugh, they are moving on to the Quarter Finals for playoffs.