By Emma Johns
BRIGHTON — As the Pemayetv Emahakv Charter School baseball and softball seasons come to an end so does the middle school career for the eighth-grade athletes.
On March 21, PECS held a special event to honor the eighth-graders and their parents. Eight softball players and three baseball players were proudly escorted across the infield by their parents as they were showered with words of encouragement from coaches.
The event gave the coaches an opportunity to thank players and parents for their commitment to their team and school. It also gave them a chance to say goodbye and good luck as the students prepare to leave PECS and enter high school.
“I like to honor the body of work that these student athletes have put in for us,” athletic director Darryl Allen said, adding that many have participated in the program since elementary school. “I think we’ve given them some strong tools to work with.”
Those tools combined with the support of their parents and teachers offers greater chances of success in the students’ futures, Allen said. Through the athletic program at PECS, Allen said they emphasize everything from academics to how students should present themselves.
“We don’t have sports teams,” he said. “We have sports programs.”
The students look forward to what lies ahead.
Pitcher Diamond Shore shared her plans on attending Moore Haven High School next year and has set a goal to spend her high school years working toward being a good student and earning an athletic scholarship.
Shae Pierce looks forward to playing sports in high school and hopes to earn her way into the University of Minnesota or Baylor University on an athletic scholarship, while Trevor Thomas looks forward to attending ninth grade at the Okeechobee Freshman Campus and to continuing playing sports. Through his academics and athletic potential he hopes to attend the University of Florida.
Although the students aspire to play for top colleges as athletes, they each understand and respect the fact that their academics are also a large part of earning an athletic scholarship.
During the event, students credited their school, coaches and parents for their support and encouragement to become the athletes and students they are today.
Best of luck to the eighth-grade Lady Seminoles: #4 Sydnee Cypress, #5 Shae Pierce, #11 Deliah Carrillo, #15 Martina Herrera, #2 Raylon Eagle, #14 Alexus James, #13 Diamond Shore, #9 Courtney Gore.
Best of luck to the eighth-grade baseball players: #2 Trevor Thomas, #23 Drayton Billie, #11 Demetrius Clark.