Show that School Spirit
Everyone in the valley knows that there is an intense rivalry between the Battle Mountain Huskies and the Eagle Valley Devils. Teams from both schools don black with Battle Mountain throwing in some gold and the Devils accenting with red and white. High school officials from around the nation say that school spirit is in decline.
With both schools having successful teams this school year and with a few spirited seniors leading the pack, it’s been just the opposite in our county’s two biggest high schools.
Shea Phelan and Morgan Wallace from Battle Mountain get their peers pumped up for the Huskies, while Chelsea Lueders and John Gabriel are known for the same thing at EVHS. All four are athletes at their respective schools and are in leadership roles in a variety of clubs and activities. For these students, when they put on that home jersey, they feel they are representing the school, the community, and everyone that has ever worn that jersey.
At Battle Mountain, the boys and girls soccer, boys and girls cross-country, boys basketball and hockey teams enjoyed a very successful year.
“They are both regulars at our home contests and show great leadership by making good choices when it comes to good sportsmanship,” says the school’s athletic director Richard Houghton. Wallace will be playing college soccer next fall in North Carolina, and says that high school sports are the reason she’s continuing in that aspect of her life.
“Our school shows a lot of Husky pride; I’ve gotten to play soccer with my best friends, and our team and coaches had great chemistry -” it has given me many opportunities,” says Wallace of her school, which contributes to her enthusiasm and school spirit.
For Phelan, it’s even more serious.”Being a Husky means more to me than most students. Black and Gold has been in my blood since birth,” says Phelan, whose mom and uncle attended the school. Phelan’s also has taught and coached there for the last 33 years. Phelan’s sister graduated from BMHS in 1999. Phelan adds, “There’s absolutely no spirit like Husky spirit, and any team that entered the dog house this year will vouch for that.”
Travel west on Highway 6 about 30 miles, and you’ll find the same spirit and the same feelings for the Huskies’ enemy ” the Eagle Valley Devils. Lueders and Gabriel’s fathers both work at the school and both have rallied at school assemblies and home games.
“Chelsea’s spirit is contagious and John has been instrumental at our pep assemblies,” says Athletic Director Dave Scott.
At EVHS, the softball and football teams did well, which sparked the school year with spirit. “When you have all these kids screaming at pep assemblies or being involved in so many activities, it makes other kids want to be a part of everything,” says Lueders. She adds that by showing class and integrity while showing school spirit is something to be proud of.
Gabriel says the enviroment and school climate contributes to overall school spirit. “The thing that motavates high school kids to show school spirit is the atmosphere. The more people involved the more the kids start to recognize that its the cool or in thing to do.
Our school has gotten a lot better this year at bringing up the school spirit,” says Gabriel, who played soccer and basketball and who will go on to play college hoops. “I love all our sports because it takes so much out of a kid to be a student and an athlete and that is why it is so important for them to get support,” says Lueders, who adds, “Ain’t it great to be a Devil!”
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