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The Florala News
Florala , Alabama
June 15, 2011     The Florala News
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June 15, 2011

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PAGE 8 THEFLORALA NEWS WEDNESDAY, JUNE 15, 2011 i ! .... .......... i- ' THE 2010-2011 PAXTON girls and boys basketball team, cheerleaders and coaches Steve Williams and Jeff Bradley. (Photo by Reid Tucker) Paxton wins big inFHSAA academic championship by Reid Tucker Paxton High's sports pro- grams, well-known for their successes in' terms of wins in the athletic arena, have now been acknowledged as some of Florida's top performers in the classroom as well. The Florida High School Athletic Association award- ed the boys basketball and baseball teams with top honors in Class 1A of the Academic Team Champion- ship Award Program due to the two Bobcat squads' cu- mulative grade point aver- ages of 3.595 and 3.469, re- spectively. Additionally, the girls basketball team came in third in the state with a GPA of 3.677 and the soft- ball team took fourth with a cumulative mark of 3.507. Furthermore, since the FH- SAA assigned point values to each top-10 school at each classification, Paxton ranked fifth among all Class 1A schools in the state, just one point behind fourth- place Mandarin Christian of Jacksonville. Paxton Assistant Princi- pal Mitch Jackson, who also serves as the school's athletic director, said the 2010-2011 school year is not the first time the Bobcats have been nominated for these kinds of awards, though it is the first time Paxton received so much academic notoriety from the FHSAA. The boys basketball squad came in fifth while the Lady Cats came in fourth in 2009-2010. Jackson said the awards are part of what is hoped to be a continuing trend of aca- demic excellence among the school's athletes. "Our students take a lot of pride in their schoolwork but this is a team effort," he said. "The coaches stress hit- ting the books just as much as getting rebounds or scor- ing runs and we also depend THE 2010-2011 PAXTON boys THE 2011 PAXTON softball on the involvement of our parents. It takes effort from everyone involved." Softball coach Laurie Gil- bert's policy toward school work exemplified Jackson's assessment. Gilbert said she had the team arrive 30 min- utes early to practice so that she would be available if any players had problems with their schoolwork and the girls would also often stay after practice to help their teammates. By making edu- cation paramount to strictly athletic success, Gilbert said she was tryirig to teach her players an important life lesson. "You might have a whole team of good athletes, but only a few of them are go- ing to make their way in life through sports," Gilbert said. "A final four in aca- demics will take you farther than a final four on the field ever will." Little Things Daddies Do Fishing trips and bicycle rides make the children's day., Nothing makes them feel so sad as when Dad is away. Fathers like to bounce their kids , gently on their knees. At the table when they say grace the heavenly Father sees. Showing respect with give and take, Daddies have to teach. The chilren listen and give him hugs, arms around him reach. When it comes to doing hard work, in the wind, rain or sun, Daddies always pitch right in ready toget it done. The little things that Daddies do, children will hold dear. Walking in their Father's shoes they've nothing to fearl Mary Ann Whiddon basketball team. (Photo by Patrick Casey) team. (Photo courtesy Laurie Gilbert) While all four of the motivation to excel in the school's main sports pro- classroom. He said winning grams heaped up academic a state championship in ac- awards, the Bobcats' basket- ademics was more humbling ball team shot the competi- in its own way than winning tion's lights out by not only on the court or field because taking first place in 1A but the former has.more do to also by having a team GPA with each student's dedica, higher than the winners of tion and takes coaching al- all the other classifications, most completely out of the What's more, the closest picture. two runners up, Tampa's 4A Jesuit (with a 3.493 cu- ' "This award was a huge mulative GPA) and the 2A honor for the school and the Orangewood Christian of team but it really shows a Maitland (3.482) are both lot about the quality of the private schools, kids we have [at Paxton]," This fact was not .lost on Bradley said. "As coaches we head basketball coach Jeff don't do an extraordinarily Bradley, who also coaches special job, we're just deal- many of the same athletes ing with extraordinary kids. on Paxton's baseball team. As much as the whole team Even though the Bobcats tries to win (sports) champi- finished their seasons with onships during the season, state playoffs appearance this is something [each stu- and records of 24-5 in bas- dent] does on their own. It ketball and 19-4 in baseball makes the whole experience Bradley was most pleased that much more overwhelm- that his players showed the ing." new m ion New students moving into the Florala High School area should go by Florala High School to register for the new school year. It is very important to register as soon as pos- sible. New students must have an Alabama Health Immuniza- tion Certificate (blue form). These certificates may be ob- tained fromthe Covington County Health Department or from a private physician. Immunization records from other states must be converted to an Alabama certificate and may be done so at the Covington County Health Department. Parents should be with the student when registering. There are forms that must be completed and signed by the parent, it would be very helpful when registering to have a last report card or records from the last school attended. Florala High School office hours are: Monday - Thurs- day, 7:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.; Friday - closed. Contact Florala High School at 334-858-3765 or visit their website at http:// The Florala Masonic Celebration Committee started their celebration Saturday morning at Lake Jackson with the an- nual bass tournament. There were 16 teams competing this time for the bragging rights that will last for a whole year. The tournament started at 5:30 a.m., and culminated With the weigh-in at 12 noon. ' This year the first place team was Kent Zessin and ChaunC- ey King with 4 bass that weighed 10.89 pounds. Their total weight also included a 7.48 pound lunker caught by Kent. This is the largest bass that has been weighed in since the beginning of the annual event in 1983. Toby McDaniel and Zack Taylor won second place with 5 bass that weighed 10.33 pounds including a kicker fish that weighed 4.20 pounds, caught the last ten minutes of the tournament. Coming in third place for two years in a row was the team of Ronnie and Leah Gamble with 4 fish that weighed 4.64 pounds. Jimmy Carnley and Jerry Fuller would have placed third, but a pen- alty of .75 pounds for 3 dead fish reduced their weight from 5.22 pounds to 4.47 pounds which put them in fourth place, i There were only three teams that had a 5-fish limit Shis year: Jimmy Carnley and Jerry Fuller; Toby McDaniel and Zack Taylor; and Colin Martin and Freeman Anderson. Mar, vin Jackson and Jerry McLeod would have weighed 5 fish, but one bounced out of Marvin's hand as he was getting them out of the live well. Their weight with four fish was 4.36 pounds, just 4 ounces short of fourth place...! The average fish this year weighed 1.31 pounds. Lamar Mitchell, Kenneth Ezell and Caleb Davidson assisted Mike Birge in weighing the fish. There were 37 fish weighed in for a total of 48.7 pounds. All fish with the exception of 5 dead fish were returned to the lake to be caught again, including Kent's 7.48 pound Lunker. Participants in the tournament would like to thank Jen- nifer Davidson for taking the pictures. | KENT ZESSIN received the big fish award with a catch weighing 7. 48 pounds. FIRST PLACE went toKing and Kent Zessin with a total of 10. 89 po unds. SECOND PLACE went to Zack Taylor and Toby Mc- Daniel with a total of 10.33 pounds. THIRD PLACE went to Ronny Gamble and Leah Gamble with a total of 4.64pounds. ( i r