Waelder celebrates athletes


WAELDER — Waelder ISD officially closed its 2017-18 athletic season last Friday with a banquet to celebrate their Wildcat athletes.

On the girls’ side of athletics, winning top awards were Honesty Fields named volleyball and basketball offensive player of the year, Brejhai Montgomery named offensive player of the year and volleyball MPV, Jakhai Thompson named most improved for volleyball and basketball as well as newcomer of the year, Fatima Torres named defensive player of the year, Keshaya Moore named defensive specialist for volleyball, Ashlynn Noyola named volleyball coach’s award as well as setter of the year and Malorie Puente named basketball coach’s award.

“Went through a lot of adversity, a lot of teamwork and teamwork building,” Waelder ISD Superintendent Jon Orozco said of the Lady Wildcats. “It took 20 years to accomplish [a district title] again. Of course next year, we’re going to do it again, I talked to the returners, we’re going to do that again.”

Orozco then announced a trophy will be displayed at the gym’s main lobby for the 2018-19 season.

“There’s two reasons for that, one is we’re extremely proud of you as a community in Waelder,” he said, “but the second thing is when other teams come to volleyball, I want them to know that their playing a district champion. We’re going to show that.”

On the boys’ side, John Aguliar won outstanding runner, Isaiah Jones-Miller was named basketball most improved, Alex Mendoza was named basketball coach’s award, Colby Thorne was named basketball offensive player of the year and Isaiah Ewing was named basketball defensive player of the year. A plaque was also made for Ewing’s all-state nomination for basketball and will be placed in Waelder’s “Hall of Champions” that is currently under construction.

Orozco gave props to not only the athletes but to boys head coach Jacob Garcia.

“The boys did a lot of work, I watched y’all go from really stingy individuals on the court, worried about the points you were getting, to five guys on the floor that didn’t care who scared or who did what as long as you got the ‘W’,” he said. “I saw young men learn how to sacrifice and learn how to be humble and have some humility.”

Orozco then gave every athlete a blue wooden W, to proudly show in their house, as a way to always remember that they are Waelder Wildcats, through and through.