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MPISD – News

Pictured: Members of the 2019-2020 MPHS UIL Academic team 

Contact: Kelly Cowan

MPHS UIL places first at Winter Tiger Invitational

The Mount Pleasant High School UIL Academic team continued its season on Friday and Saturday, February 7-8, at the Winter Tiger Invitational held on the MPHS campus. Thirty-six schools competed in UIL academic events, ten in the large school, and 26 in the small school division. Overall, Mount Pleasant High School took first place at the meet. Six teams, including Calculator Applications, Mathematics, Science, Current Events, Social Studies, and Journalism, all took 1st place team honors in their respective events.            

Full results include:

-Mount Pleasant High School:  1st place Sweepstakes team

-Calculator Applications: Miguel Segura 1st, Patricia Roque 2nd, Isaac Hernandez 3rd, Devin Castaneda 4th, Sam Pearson 5th, Nic Chappell III 6th

-Mathematics: Sam Pearson 1st, Shelby Courreges 2nd, Nic Chappell 3rd, Mary Kait Hereen 5th

-Number Sense: Sam Pearson 3rd, Nic Chappell III 4th

-Science:  Overall: Shelby Courreges 1st, Sam Pearson 3rd, Top Chemistry: Shelby Courreges, Top Physics: Sam Pearson

12th Grade: Shelby Courreges 1st, Sam Pearson 2nd 

11th Grade: Brock Shavers 3rd 

10th Grade: Jessie Parchman 3rd, Nic Chappell 6th, Jose Mata 7th 

9th Grade: Reese Ball 2nd 

-Current Events: Connelly Cowan 1st, Reid Pinckard 4th, Isabella Greco 5th 

-Spelling: Anna Harris 2nd 

-Ready Writing:  John Rodriguez 2nd 

-Social Studies: Johnathan Sandate 1st, Odalys Adame 2nd, Juan Cigarroa 3rd, Paola Ventura 4th 

-Accounting: 2nd place team David Perez, Azusena Esparza, Vanessa Vasquez


Editorial Writing: Madison Adams 1st, Megan Adams 2nd, Gavin Rider 4th

Headline Writing: Madison Adams 1st, Megan Adams 2nd, Gavin Rider 3rd 

Feature Writing: Madison Adams 2nd, Megan Adams 3rd, Gavin Rider 5th 

Copy Editing: Megan Adams 1st, Madison Adams 2nd, Gavin Rider 3rd 

News Writing: Madison Adams 3rd, Gavin Rider 5th, Megan Adams 6th

The MPHS UIL Academic team will compete again at the Sulphur Springs meet on February 21 and 22. The MPHS UIL Academic team’s coaches are Gina Crouch (UIL Coordinator, Spelling, Current Events, Literary Criticism), Osias Hernandez (Math, Computer Science), Larry Russell (Science), Gabby Robbins (Ready Writing), LeAnne Blalock (Social Studies), David Clark (Accounting, Computer Apps), Cody Morris (Speech and Debate), and John Whitten (Journalism).


MPHS Goin’ Gold Band Students Going to State Solo and Ensemble Contest


MPHS band members advance to State

Fifty-one Mount Pleasant High School Band Students earned first division medals at the UIL Region IV Solo and Ensemble Contest at First Baptist Church in Sulphur Springs on February 6. Forty-four of those earned first divisions on Class 1 musical selections and have advanced to the State Solo and Ensemble contest to be in Austin at the end of May.

 To earn a first division medal and advance to state, these students logged many hours of practice over the past three months on difficult musical selections chosen by the Texas University Interscholastic League. They then had to perform the work before a judge, a challenge for any young musician. The first division awards they earned represent a superior performance and are the same as a first-place finish.

Qualifying for state as part of an ensemble are Chris Araiza, Tommy Arredondo, Brian Ayala, Manoa Bagsic, Isai Baltazar, Jayden Beckham, Jordi Bello, Hannah Bowles, Madison Carpenter, Ezekiel Castenada, Maiko Estrada, Alvin Gonzalez, Jimmy Gonzalez, Anna Harris, Nia Jackson, Juan Juarez, Isaiah Martinez, Pablo Mata, Leslie Mayo, Jair Moreno, Alejandro Nava, David Nava, Nayeli Palacios, Neida Perez, Pedro Portillo, Angel Quistian, Abril Ramirez, Brian Ramirez, Lizette Ramirez, Enrique Ramos, Holly Reese, Eli Rider, Jordan Rivas, John Rodriquez, Eric Salazar, Nick Segovia, Juan Serna, Brock Shavers, Jesus Vasquez, Jerrius Vickers, Hunter Williams, Donovan Young, and Pedro Zuniga.

Four students, including Bagsic, Carpenter, Jackson, and Martinez, also qualified for state with solo performances.  

“This is the largest group Mount Pleasant High School has ever had advance to the State Solo and Ensemble Contest,” said Dr. Theodus Luckett, MPISD Director of Fine Arts and MPHS Goin’ Gold Band Director. “We congratulate the students and their band directors. We wish them success at State in May.”


Photo: Mount Pleasant Junior High School UIL Meet participants


MPJHS competes in UIL East Texas Junior High Academic Meet

Mount Pleasant Junior High School 7th and 8th graders competed in the UIL East Texas Junior High Academic Meet at Hallsville Junior High School on February 1 and brought home multiple medals and ribbons.

Mount Pleasant Junior High earned three team awards. The 7th-grade Science Team of Marilyn Johnson, Montserrat Lopez, and Dana Escobar placed 3rd as a team at the meet. The 8th-grade Music Memory Team of Orion Senence, Rocio Herrera, Zach Haygood, and Jake Carr took 2nd place as a team, and the 8th-grade Spelling Team of Harley Martin, Sophie Greco, and Angelina Hernandez earned 2nd place as a team.

Numerous students earned individual medals:


Editorial Writing: Jazlynn Juarez—1st place; Christian Johnson—4th place

Spelling: Sam Chappell—2nd place

Social Studies: Alejandro Fernandez—5th place 

Science: Dana Escobar—6th place 


Chess Puzzle Solving: Luke Muskrat—4th place 

Editorial Writing: Sophie Greco—2nd place; Angelina Hernandez—6th place 

Music Memory: Orion Senence—4th place; Rocio Herrera—5th place

Spelling: Sophie Greco—2nd place; Angelina Hernandez—6th place

           “Our students have been practicing before and after school with their coaches for the last several months,” said MPJH Assistant Principal Todd Daniel. “It is always great to see how excited the students are before, during, and after the competition. It never fails that they will talk about doing even more events the next year because they had such a good experience competing academically against surrounding schools.”

MPJH UIL coaches include Phillip Sweeden (Chess Puzzle Solving and Maps, Graphs and Charts), Karen Stayton (Spelling and Dictionary Skills), Josh Miles (Music Memory), Windy Meurisse (Calculator), Terry Fitch (Mathematics), Allison Caddel (Science), and Launa McCord and Randee Dyer (Editorial Writing and Ready Writing).


Varsity: The MPHS Varsity Winter Guard

JV: The MPHS JV Winter Guard

JH: The Mount Pleasant Junior High Winter Guard

Mount Pleasant ISD Winter Guards attend competitions.

The Mount Pleasant ISD, Winter Guard teams, attended their first competition of the season on Saturday, February 8. The North Texas Colorguard Association (NTCA) competition was held at Northwest High School in Justin, Tx, and featured 67 teams from across the state of Texas.

The Varsity Winter Guard placed 1st out of 28 in their division with a score of 77.290, more than eight points ahead of 2nd place. Because of their rating, they promoted the team to a higher class. The Varsity Show is titled “Akasha, Queen of the Immortals.”

The JV Winter Guard placed 2nd in the novice division out of 20 teams. The JV show is titled “Well with Me” and features the song “It Is Well With My Soul.”

The Mount Pleasant Junior High Guard placed 3rd in the cadet novice division with their show titled “Passing Notes” with music from the TV show, Gossip Girl.

The MPISD Winter Guards will be back in action at the NTCA competition on February 29 in Saginaw. Marty Newman directs the MPHS Varsity and JV teams. The Junior High team is headed by Presley McClendon with Jorge Banda assisting.


Photo left to right: Reid Pinckard, Taryn Thurman, Coach Cody Morris, Ryan Sharp

MPHS juniors earn Academic All-American awards

Mount Pleasant High School juniors Reid Pinckard, Ryan Sharp, and Taryn Thurman have earned the National Speech and Debate Association’s Academic All-American award. Of the more than 141,000 student members of the Association, fewer than 1,000 students receive the Academic All-American Award every year. To date, only seven team members from MPHS have earned this prestigious honor.

The Academic All-American award recognizes students who have completed at least five semesters of high school. They also earned the degree of Superior Distinction in the National Speech and Debate Association Honor Society, a total of 750 or more merit points, have at least a 3.7 GPA and have demonstrated outstanding character and leadership.

“Reid, Taryn, and Ryan are all very deserving of this honor,” said MPHS Speech and Debate coach, Cody Morris. “All three of them have earned this award through hard work in competition and the classroom. This is not an award they hand out to just anyone. Becoming an Academic All-American is extremely difficult. I am very proud to say we have three more Academic All-Americans in the program.”

Pinckard is the son of Ritchie and Amanda Pinckard, and Sharp is the son of Robin and Janet Sharp. Thurman is the daughter of Tris and Stephanie Thurman.