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OJHS Color Guard Ends Season On A High Note
Members of the Oakdale Junior High School Color Guard pose with their trophy and medals shortly after taking first place honors at Enochs High School on Saturday, April 1. Photo Contributed

The Oakdale Junior High School Color Guard has had a memorable season. Be it from more than doubling its size, from six members last year to 15 this year, or its top two placement in all five season competitions, it has definitely been a good year.

On Saturday, April 1 the team earned First Place at the Junior High A Class Championships hosted at Enochs High School.

Longtime Color Guard coach Danesa Menge shared her excitement and pride with not only the growth of the team, but the overall success. The feelings were echoed by many of the team members.

“It was exciting. Stressful but also really sad in the moment,” returning team member, eighth grader Maliyah Pender stated, “because we’re graduating and it’s been really fun with the success.”

Menge noted that the increased team size had definitely made a difference in the overall team success.

“I feel like the whole experience was so surreal,” teammate Daphne Horseman said. “In the moment it was sad because it is my last year with all these people but it’s also my last year with Menge. It was also an incredible moment because we all stuck together and we made it work.”

Menge explained that the team had hit some highs and lows, yet ultimately it benefited the team when performance time came. Beneficial, in fact, to the tune of two Second Place nods and three First Place finishes for the overall season.

“We went up against the five other schools and most of those schools, they all meet every day, five days a week for an hour-long class for Color Guard,” Abigail Holt shared of the tough competition on Saturday. “But we had two days a week, three hours each day.”

While the majority of the team plans to return next year or advance to the OHS team, part of the draw for the OJHS team tends to be not just the team, but the coach.

“I think my favorite thing about Color Guard is I got to hang out with a lot of people and make a lot of new friends,” seventh grader Madelyn Baker said. “It was really nice to find out that my English teacher was also my Color Guard instructor.”