French exchange students come to LRHS

Yosa Whitney – LRHS News

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – Twenty french exchange students are flying halfway across the world and arriving into their new temporary homes. They are at LRHS to experience American culture.

Past LRHS exchane visits have been successful enough to continue the program, making for a fun stay. Some of their excursions will include the local Ellenton Outlet Mall, Sarasota’s Ringling and Bradenton’s South Florida Museums.

There were a few difficulties placing all the exchange students in local homes, but officials were able to address all the issues.

LRHS French teacher Dr. Susan Mcdonald, the adviser of the program, added ” Many of the kids had trouble finding a home until the last few days due to allergies, but in the end it all worked out nicely”.

LRHS exchange students usually return the visit to France around May, but the program this year hasn’t attracted enough participants.

The French high school students will return home March 8.

LRHS techies finish third in state

Olivia Fiebig – LRHS News

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – The victorious return of LRHS Technology Student Association (TSA) from state competition members was marked with a third place overall finish in the state. The Mustangs competed against over 1,400 students who attended. The state’s top three programs were all from Manatee County.

LRHS earned first place in the Chapter Team category, that consists of great use of parliamentary procedures, the Flight Endurance category, in which LRHS also got third place, and first place in the Techbowl, a competition using trivia based solely on technology. LRHS also received several other top ten finishes.

All first place winners will eventually attend the National TSA Competition in Washington, DC. Among them will be seniors Brian Dexter, Joseph Kosobucki, and Nathan Miller, who won first place in the Technical Sketching category.

Sophomore Jonathan Gambinio said, “Being a part of this competition has been an amazing life experience. It’s a lot of fun hanging out with friends and competitors throughout the state, and it really has been a once in a lifetime opportunity.”

Mustang seniors reminded of key deadlines

Jillian Brant – LRHS News

 (LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – Graduation is right around the corner for Lakewood Ranch High School seniors. The big day is scheduled for 7 p.m., May 30, at Bradenton Area Convention Center.

According to LRHS senior class adviser Ann Fleury, 12th graders need to remember some important deadlines.

* Senior fees will stay at $30 until April 30, when prices go up.

* Order caps and gowns as soon as possible.

* Senior sweatshirts ($25) and lanyards ($2) are still for sale.

* Grad Bash deadline is coming soon, March 5.

* Graduation speaker applications will be available March 10 in Fleury’s room (572).

* Graduation practice will be held at the May 29 at the Convention Center.

* Extra graduation tickets will become available Monday, April 28. Up to five additional tickets will be given out per senior depending on availability.

“Seniors must only come in before or after school to get any applications, tickets, buy sweatshirts/lanyards or any information,” said Fleury

2014-15 class registration already underway

Jenna Greenfield – LRHS News

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – Next year may seem far away but Mustangs are getting a taste of just how close it is as they begin registering for 2014-15 classes.

Students already have their curriculum guides and can learn more about the process by watching the school’s registration video.

The curriculum guides are an important tool to students as they contain descriptions and prerequisites of classes, graduation requirements, and information about advanced placement and dual enrollment courses.

Some students need to get a jumpstart on registration.

“If they’re interested in dual enrollment, [students] need to begin the process of signing up more sooner than later,” said guidance counselor Tracy Jordan.

Students will get the change to meet with their counselors to discuss their schedules.

“Students need to be patient, they’re probably not going to see us before filling out the form but they will have an individual meeting with us before the end of the year,” said Jordan.

LRHS may also have a few new classes next year, hoping to introduce robotics, debate, and creative writing. Whether these classes will actually be taught next year depends on the number of students who sign up.

“I’ve wanted to take creative writing since eighth grade so I am happy that they’re bringing it back,” said sophomore Tiffany Miller.

Jordan said students should “challenge themselves when they can but be conscientious of time and don’t overwhelm themselves.”

No winter of discontent…Mustang athletes rock

Mackenzie Pierce and Kailyn Scully – LRHS News

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – LRHS Mustangs showed off their “horse” power during the winter sports season. All of the athletes in the soccer, basketball, wrestling and girls weightlifting teams fought hard to make the school proud.


The LRHS girls and boys soccer teams both excelled this season and earned spots in the state final four.

Boys varsity coach Vito Bavaro said, “We had a great run. Our goal this year was to make it to states and for the first time in school history we made it to the final four. We have a young team with a promising future. Next year our goal will be to not only make it to states but to win as well.”


Girls varsity coach Tina Hadley said, “We had a very successful season. We performed well and finished strong.”

The girls team fought their way to the regional semi-finals and unfortunately fell short in overtime. The boys had a great run as well.

Boys Varsity Coach Jeremy Schiller said, “This season everyone made a lot of progress and worked hard, especially the seniors. Next year I want to maximize the potential of my players and have more than twenty wins.”

Both coaches agreed that their goal for next year is to make it to the state championship tournaments.


The LRHS wrestling team set numerous records this season. For the first time in school history a total of five Mustangs qualified for the state competition and four of them were underclassmen. Additionally, the team went from placing 46th in previous years to 8th in this year’s state competition.

LRHS Head Wrestling Coach Pat Ancil said, “I am proud of the five state qualifiers who helped us achieve the highest ranking at the state level in school history.”

Freshman Hunter Reed wrestled his way to the final round of his weight division and came home with second place. He was the first wrestler from LRHS to ever make it to the final round of a state competition.

Other LRHS state qualifiers include sophomores Tim Dwyer and Dylan Cameron, junior Jared Dipsiner, and senior Ty McLeod.


This year Lakewood Ranch’s girls weightlifting team represented the school with dedication and determination. A total of six girls qualified for districts.

Sophomore Riley Bohan qualified for the state tournament.

Coach Michael Koczersut said, “I would love to see more girls qualify for states next season.”