Winterguards triumph in first competitions of season

February 12, 2010 — by Alex Ju

Both the JV and varsity Winterguard teams took home first place trophies at their first two competitions of the season on Jan. 29 at Clovis East High School and Jan. 30 at James Lick High School. The wins w*ere the result of weeks of hard work and preparation and were a promising start to the competitive season for the 23 members of the JV team and 12 members of the varsity team.

New instructor Tony Crapo said it is rare for a guard to win first in two different circuits. A first place in one circuit can easily become a fourth place in another circuit, with different judges using different criteria.

The first shows displayed much promise for the revamped Winterguard. Last year the Winterguard placed fourth at the California Color Guard Circuit (CCGC) finals.

“It’s really exciting to** win. When Mr. Otani first told us we had gotten first place, I didn’t believe him!” said sophomore Stephanie Poo.

This year the JV show is designed to a remixed version of the song “If You Could Read My Mind” by Gordon Lightfoot. The varsity show is titled “Le Ballet Noir” and set to “Aha!” by Imogen Heap.

The Winterguard had not competed in the San Joaquin Valley Colorguard and Percussion Review (SJVCPR) in Clovis before and left many of the guards there speculating as to their identity.

“The most-heard quote of the night was, ‘Where’s Saratoga?'” said Crapo, who was happy with the wins but warned the guard not to get too confident and to continue working hard to stay ahead.

Several schools still recognize the guard from field season, however, once they are reminded of the immense tree that was the center of the show. Despite both winter shows being completely separate from field, the guard still bears the nickname of “The Tree People.”

“I think the nickname is hilarious, but it’s cool because we have an identity,” said sophomore Christine Liu.

The guard is looking forward to the rest of the season.

“So far this season has been a lot more exciting. We’re making a lot of progress,” said junior Nikki Fukuda.

The guard was scheduled to compete at a SJVPRCG competition at Buchanan High School Feb. 12, and the important national Winter Guard International (WGI) Regional at Clovis North High School Feb. 13 and 14. However, due to printing deadlines, the results could not be published.

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