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Newly established color guard takes the field

Freshman Alexis Hastings and her team are in right slam preparing for pop toss listening to Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen. They have practiced this position for over a month.

Brielle Hall / Photo Editor

Freshman Alexis Hastings and her team are in right slam preparing for pop toss listening to Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen. They have practiced this position for over a month.

Brielle Hall, Photo Editor

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History will be made at Bobcat Field tonight when the new color guard takes the field with band at halftime for its first ever performance.
“Mr. [Steven] Olmstead originally said that a few years ago he wanted to get a color guard to raise their visional score,” color guard director Katie Ryans said. “I saw an ad posted on The North Texas Color Guard Association it said that they needed someone to start their program.”
After making the decision to add the program, the band advertised by putting flyers all around the halls, inspiring a variety of students to join.
“I saw it in the choir room,” senior Cody Mize said. “I always asked my mom about her experiences in high school about it. When I saw the opportunity, I went for it.”
The team is comprised of eight high schoolers and one eighth grader who had previously participated at her old school’s color guard.
“When I moved here, I was joining the band,” 8th grader Jackie Hemphill said. “My step dad was telling Mr. Olmstead about me doing guard previously at my old school and he told me we might be doing a guard this year. I was very happy about that and wanted it to happen.”
Practices consist of going to the band tower, doing stretches, and practicing choreography.
“They are fun, but they are sweaty,” junior Valerie Venzor said. “If you don’t know how to spin it quickly, you will get a concussion.”
The members work together to keep energy up during morning and afternoon practices.
“I think they are fantastic,” Ryans said. “They always work hard. We have little songs to make each other motivated. I’ll say, ‘Hey, I push you’ and they’ll say, ‘I’m pushing harder.’ They are really motivated.”
The group’s progress caught the attention of band president Evan Chilton.
“Their skills are much greater than what I expected it to be at this time,” Chilton said. “I feel like they will be a worthy addition to the program and will help us do well.”
After exactly 32 days of practice, the team has achieved a skill in ⅙ of the time it took Ryans to gain herself.
“It’s crazy to see some of them doing doubles,” Ryans said.
Not only will the color guard perform on the field with the band in the fall, but it will have a chance to show off their talent as its own entity.
“I am looking forward to the winter portion,” junior Tayla Fogg said. “We learn routines and do solos. It’s just us; we get to be looked at our performance and not the whole band’s.”
Even though color guard has yet to perform, Ryans remains confident in the group’s ability.
“I am looking forward to their continued success,” Ryans said. “We’re on a rollercoaster that only goes up right now.”

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