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20120824 Sharyland Lonestar Cup featureSharyland High School coaches proudly display the trophies their teams won during the 2011-12 season as the school celebrates seventh place in the state University Interscholastic League Lone Star Cup. L-R: Dale Whitaker (girls’ basketball), David Keith (boys’ basketball), Paul Cruz (softball), JJ Lopez (girls’ soccer), Rev Hernandez (State Champion boys’ soccer), Donna Mason (academics and UIL Coordinator), Claudia Garza (volleyball), Bart Bickerton (baseball) and Ron Adame (football). Progress Times photo by Doug YoungMISSION—The accolades from the past academic year keep coming for Sharyland as they were notified recently that they placed seventh in state in the year-long University Interscholastic League Lone Star Cup competition that includes athletics and academics.

The Lone Star Cup is a competition that honors the top academic and athletic programs in the state, and includes all member high schools that are in good academic and athletic eligibility standing. The annual program recognizes five high schools, one in each of the five UIL classifications, based on their overall team achievement in specific academic and athletic championships.

“It’s a great honor to our athletes and coaches for the success they have achieved, and it shows the dedication they had toward athletics on the field as well as education because you have to pass to play,” said Sharyland Athletic Director Richard Thompson. “It takes dedication and effort, day in and day out, to be successful like that.

“I’m so proud of all our athletes and coaches, and the support we get from our school comes from the top, our superintendent, school board and administrators,” Thompson added. “You have to have support first to be successful in the athletic field, and at Sharyland athletics is an extension of the classroom.”

In addition to athletic programs, non-athletic competitions such as marching band, one-act plays, and state academic meets are taken into consideration.

The complicated point system used by UIL makes it harder to score and despite not winning the 2011-12 competition, Sharyland’s seventh place is quite an achievement. The Rattlers scored a total of 62 points in the academic year. Southlake Carroll won the competition with 100 points, Conroe The Woodlands was second with 92.5, and San Antonio Reagan placed third with 76 points.

“It’s very complicated (scoring). It doesn’t come around often, but when it does it’s a big deal,” said Sharyland academic competition sponsor Donna Mason. “As far as the Texas Lone Star Cup goes, honestly I didn’t know we were in the running until it was all done. So it is no pressure. You do the best you can and get as many kids qualified to regional, then to state, and compete as best as you can at every level.”

Each year Sharyland fields an academic team and includes their athletic programs in the Lone Star Cup competition.

“Everyone takes their job very seriously and this year we had more points than ever before,’” said Mason. “We were very fortunate. The kids did a fantastic job and we were impressed with what the kids were able to do, and the coaches worked just as hard to gain that recognition.

“We have an administration that supports us very well,” she added. “They don’t just support academics, but athletics too. They make it a part of the school’s goal and philosophy that students will be able to compete at the state level.”

Sharyland’s final placing was bolstered by their soccer team’s Class 5A state championship that netted the school 16 points and catapulted the Rattlers into the Top 10 in the state.

“When we look at the Top 10 schools that are in there this year, they’re schools that are there quite often and we’re thankful we had the success it takes to get into the Top 10,” said Thompson. “There wasn’t much that separated us from third place and it’s a tribute to our school for having achieved it.”

Although it’s not the first time Sharyland has placed in the annual UIL competition, it is the first time since becoming a 5A school in 2004. The Rattlers last placed in the Top 10 in 2003 when the school was still classified as 4A. In 2002-03 Sharyland High School finished in 6th Place in the 4A Division in the Lone Star Cup, scoring 62 points that year.

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