Hundreds of Uvalde High School student athletes were honored during the Uvalde Athletic Booster Club’s 2019 UHS Sports Banquet Monday night.
A standing-room-only-size crowd was on hand for the activities at the Uvalde County Event Center at the Fairplex.
Highlighting the banquet was the presentation of the special awards.
Uvalde High School athletic director R.T. Gonzales announced the special award winners, while members of the UHS coaching staff formed a receiving line to congratulate the award winners.
The top two awards went to Adelyhda “Lala” Perez and Chris Embers.
Perez received the Lobo Award, presented annually to the top UHS female athletes, while Embers received the Orville Etheridge Award, presented annually to the top UHS male athlete.
Marcus De La Cruz and Anahi Ramirez were the winners of the UHS Fighting Heart Award.
Jordan Ortiz was named as the recipient of the Mike King Hustle Award.
Eric De La Rosa claimed the Pappy Drennan Award given to the UHS male athlete who achieves his personal best through athletics.
Giselle Rivera won the Lobo Spirit Award for leadership through athletics.
Recipients of the Marvin Kolinek Award included Brenda Garcia and Alfred Treviño.
The Kolinek Award goes to the student-athletes who exhibit class and the virtues of community service.
Uvalde Athletic Booster Club secretary Niki Henderson announced the winner of the 2019 Harvey Kinchlow – Here Come The Coyotes Award, Uvalde Leader-News sports editor James Volz.
Henderson praised Volz for over 40 years of sports reporting for the newspaper and for his involvement in public address announcing at UHS sports contests, radio announcing, along with his overall support for the Coyotes and the Lobos.
The Kinchlow Award is presented each year to the person who contributes an extraordinary effort in the support of UHS athletes.
Eight UHS seniors were named as winners of $650 scholarship awards from the booster club, including Michaela Contreras, Riley Dalrymple, Nadia Gonzales, Morgan Kenney, Ariana Perez, Alisandra Rodriguez, Madison Sheedy, and Joey Valerio.
Student representatives from each UHS sports gave a brief look back at the 2018-19 sports school year.
Those athletes included: Gavin Vara, powerlifting; Elijah Flores, football; Alfred Treviño, boys track; Andrea Perez, girls track; Sofia White, golf; Eric Rios, boys soccer; Maribel Soliz, girls soccer; Alyssa Rodriguez, girls basketball; Donovan Amaya, boys basketball; Jordan Ortiz, baseball; Adelyhda Perez, wrestling; Morgan Kenney, volleyball; Kamryn Arredondo, softball; Chelsy Moreno, cross country; Kendall Zimmerman, swimming; and Bailey Wimberley, tennis.
Prior to the start of the banquet, UABC president Michelle Torres gave the official welcome.
Torres announced that the booster club raised over $50,000 for the UHS athletic program.
She invited Uvaldeans to join the booster club for the 2019-20 school year.
Paul Stephens delivered the invocation.
NJROTC cadets Ysela Ruiz, Arianna Sanchez, Aaliyah Garcia, and Vanessa Arredondo presented the colors, while Briana Mata sang the national anthem a capella.
UABC treasurer Tracey Parker recognized the special guests.
She then introduced the athletes and parents of the award-winning Uvalde Special Olympics track-and field team. They recently participated in the 50th-annual Texas state Special Olympics.
Coach Gonzales introduced members of his high school coaching staff and their spouses.
“I am blessed to have a great coaching staff. They do a great job of getting our athletes to believe in themselves, and to strive to do more than they believe they can do,” said Gonzales. “We appreciate you parents for trusting us with your most prized possession, your daughters and sons in our program.”
Gonzales thanked members of the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District board of trustees, administrators, teachers, UHS athletic secretary Annette Cardenas, and members of the UCISD technology, maintenance, custodial, and transportation departments for their support of UHS athletics.
Special thanks by Gonzales went out to many others, including Pete Luna, Johnny Coronado, James Volz, Nancy Cargil, Nancy Sutton, and Uvalde County Judge Bill Mitchell, just to name a few.
Members of the UHS coaching staff took turns talking about their sport, while their athletes stood to be recognized for their achievements and overall performance.
R.T. Gonzales introduced football.
Other coaches who took part in this phase of the banquet were: Terri Rambie, tennis; Russell McElroy, volleyball; Frank Gonzales, powerlifting; Gisel Mireles, girls’ basketball; Alex Oyola, boys’ basketball; Roy Torres, golf; Keith Pendleton, girls’ soccer; Javier Sanchez, boys’ soccer; C.J. Rivera, boys’ track; Libby Guzman, girls’ track, and girls’ and boys’ cross-country; Kristina Finger, softball; Sart Perez III, baseball; Nick Hernandez, wrestling; and Merium Valdez, swimming.
Before the program began, those in attendance enjoyed the banquet meal catered by the booster club from Lunker’s Grill.