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The Huskies have been sick of getting kicked around. For the first two years of their existence as a school, Juarez-Lincoln was forced to attend school in a building too small for its enrollment as well in the shadow of La Joya High School.
Last December, the Huskies were finally able to transition to their new, permanent campus on SR 107. With new facilities, a weight room big enough to allow the entire football team to use (at the old school they had to use two weight rooms: one at their school and the other at Jimmy Carter Junior High) and two basketball gyms that amplify sound, allowing the home crowd to really get into the games. In short, it has been a complete turnaround from the former school.
Going through the highlights of each sport, football had some standouts that showed Husky Football is on the upswing. Linebacker Edder Garcia was named to District 32-4A First Team All-District. Garcia was joined by Fabian Gonzalez (defensive end), Sergio Cuellar (linebacker) and Erik Hernandez (punter), all second team selections. Hernandez was also named to the second team offense as a tight end and was joined by fullback Joel Garcia.
However, as it pertains to performance, the highlight of fall was the running of cross country athletes Angel Banda and Emily Perez. The two runners showed their skills at state, where Banda took second and Perez fifth. Banda's second place finish followed his silver medal finish in track the previous spring.
Following up on the success of Banda and Perez was the girls basketball team, who made their first ever post season appearance. The captain and star for the Lady Huskies was Brenda Montemayor, who was named First Team All-District. Montemayor was also first team in volleyball and was helped in the quest for bi-district by Cynthia Badillo, a fellow first team selection.
While the boys basketball team did not make it to bi-district, it improved significantly and was in the running to be in the final four. Helping the cause was Azahel Alvarez, a first team selection in district.
Despite the success of girls basketball, it was the girls wrestling team that brought the school its first district team title. Competing in District 31, Mallaly Aleman, Cinthia Torres, Danae Sanchez and Ester Garcia were all named district champs. For the boys, Alex Becerra took first as well.
Building on the success of girls wrestling, were the boys and girls soccer teams. Each program had success, with a plethora of first team selections. Helping the boys to an undefeated district run and championship were Luis Guerra, Miguel Angel Rodriguez, Delber Rivera, Arnold Pruneda, Israel Flores, Jonathan Martinez, Hector Perez, Alfredo Veliz and Juan Zamora. Specifically, Rodriguez was named the district defensive player of the year, Flores, the newcomer of the year and Pruneda to the first team all-Valley.
For the girls, the success was similar, if not equal. Taking second in District 61, the girls had four players named to all-district, starting with Amairani Ramirez, who was the co-defensive player of the year. Joining Ramirez were Veronica Cisneros, Gina Cantu and Cristel Prado, who were named all-district as defender, midfield and forward, respectively.
In terms of success, the year concluded how it began: with Emily Perez and Angel Banda bringing home the hardware for the school. A year before it was Banda who succeeded the most, finishing runner-up at state in the 3200. Ironically, this year, Banda did not qualify for state while Perez did. The junior runner took home the district and regional titles in both the 3200 and 1600 meter run. At state in Austin, Perez took seventh in the 3200 and fourth in the 1600.
While not as successful as Perez or the Banda of 2010, version 2011 still did relatively well. Banda took first at district in the 1600 and second in the 3200. In addition, Banda's teammates in the 800 relay took first at district with a time of 1:30.52.
To be sure, Juarez-Lincoln is not the big dog on campus. There is a long way to go. However, if 2010-11 is any indication, the Huskies will not be pushed around. Whether it is football, volleyball, girls wrestling, soccer or runners, Juarez-Lincoln is getting results.
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The Progress Times is the hometown newspaper for the local communities of Mission, Sharyland, Alton, Palmview, La Joya and surrounding areas in Western Hidalgo County. We have a staff of veteran reporters who work diligently every week to bring our readers the latest news as it affects their hometown area and people.