Summer apps make life easier

Spencer Tucker
– LRHS News

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – Only a few more days before Mustangs can enjoy the Florida summer vacation sun. Some will be traveling around the country, enjoying what other states have to offer, and maybe even to different countries. But vacation doesn’t mean no technology. There are a variety of summer apps to make Mustangs’ life easier.

Never get a event rained out again with The Weather Channel app. Users access trusted forecasts to help plan the day, week, and even hour. View incredibly fast and accurate maps that offer past and future radar, from big storms to bizarre findings. Don’t let allergies or illnesses affect the day. The Weather Channel app also gives seasonal tools, like pollen alerts, cold and flu module and more.

Mustangs always appreciate the opportunity to save money. Two apps help save some money. DealSaver is an app that shows local deals. Another app to save money is Groupon. Both offers great deals for everything they offer. Both DealSaver and Groupon give deals on the best things to do, see, eat, and buy in any city in their lists.

Billboards become redundant with the free RoadNinja app. Users learn the locations of restaurants, gas stations and points of interest near every highway exit. View real-time gas prices and access RoadNinja special offers and coupons to save money.

For those leaving the state, Packing Pro is a necessary app. It allows users to create packing lists, building them quickly to not waste time getting ready to get on the road. The app allows access to other people’s lists to get ideas on what to bring on trips.

Roadside America will help any drive not seem so boring. This app points out every giant twine ball, crazy museum or hilarious statue. This app highlights seven oddity-rich US or Canada regions. Optional in-app purchases unlock all attractions they have on file.


Row, row, row your boat…all the way to nationals

Tyler Gordon – LRHS News

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – Florida rowing champions and LRHS students Katie Molinari, junior, Hailey Todoroff, sophomore, and Tracy Roberts, senior, will compete in the US Rowing Youth Championships June 9 in California.

“Going through states for the first time and winning the state title was so exciting, and I am really looking forward to going to Nationals and seeing this whole year pay off,” said Todoroff.

There will be 130 teams attending and three LRHS students will be participating. Todoroff will row in the Lightweight four category and Molinari will compete in the Lightweight eight category.

“The girls have been working so hard and now they have to work even harder to compete and win at Nationals. I am so happy for them and excited to see how well everyone does,” said LRHS junior Natalie Earp who rows with them on a local level.

Roberts will be competing in the top-ranked Varsity eight category at nationals after winning the state championships in her category. Roberts will attend Stanford University on a crew scholarship next fall.

Falcos burn up the track (and field)

Kailyn Scully – LRHS News

LRHS junior Talia Falco soars over the hurdles.

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL)- Mustang track has found a new dynamic duo. Sisters Talia and Sophia Falco have caught the attention of coaches and athletes across the state of Florida.

The Falco sisters have bonded over athletics, especially track. Although junior Talia participates in more jumping events and freshman Sophia focuses on sprints, they have found a similar love for the long jump.

Together, the Falco sisters have dominated the competition in the long jump. Talia and Sophia received a spot in the top three at the county, district, and regional meets this season. Sophia got first place in all three.

Talia said, “[Sophia] has been constantly beating me in [the long jump]. I’ll give her that one.”

The tables turned when it came to the state competition. Talia jumped a new personal record of 17-9, which put her in third place and got her a bronze medal. Sophia fell just short of her older sister, receiving fourth place and jumping a distance of 17-8.75.

Sophia said, “My sister has been working really hard all year, and I am proud of her. I would have liked to jump farther, but there is always next year.”

Mustang freshman Sophia Falco sprints for glory.

LRHS track coach Mark Napier said, “The Falco girls did an awesome job. They are competitors; they love to compete.”

The weather at the cool and rainy Florida State Finals may not have been golden, but the Falco sisters definitely were.

Talia was the star. Even the bad weather couldn’t shut down her amazing performances. Talia received two personal records, two gold medals for triple and high jump and a bronze medal for long jump.

“I exceeded my expectations this season,” said Talia. “It felt so surreal to know that I was the best high jumper and triple jumper in the state of Florida.”

Sophia also stole the show after running an amazing anchor leg for the 4×100 meter relay and starting the 4×400 meter relay off strong. She was awarded a seventh place medal for the 4×100, an eighth place medal for the 4×400, and a fourth place medal for her individual performance in the long jump.

Napier said, “It is obvious that [the Falcos] enjoy what they do; in my experience, success comes from having fun.”

Mustang athletes rock the classroom…again

Kailyn Scully – LRHS News

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL)- Athletes at Lakewood Ranch High School don’t only exceed on the field (or court, mat, or whatever), but also academically. LRHS received the highest ranking for the Class 7A Florida High School Athletic Association’s Academic Team Champions Standings for 2013-14.

These rankings are awarded based on a point system. The top ten schools in each category (sport) are awarded points based on the average GPA of its team members. First place receives ten points, second place gets nine, etc.

LRHS Athletic Director Shawn Trent said, “It is a great accomplishment for the school to receive this award, especially since we have won four years in a row now.”

LRHS had many athletic teams finish first in their categories including boys cross country, football, and weightlifting as well as girls basketball and track and field.

Principal finalists meet LRHS

By Matthew Bell, Natalie Earp and Jonathan Vrabec – LRHS News

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL) – After six years in office LRHS principal Linda Nesselhauf retires this summer. A public forum was held May 27 to introduce the public and school staff to the three finalists hoping to replace her.

Although school officials haven’t announced the date for their final decision, each of the candidates provided a brief biography and comments.

Scott Cooper

Scott J. Cooper is one of the candidates to become the next head of LRHS. Cooper has nine years professional experience in Manatee County. He has experience in teaching, counseling, and special program management.

Cooper said his priority as principal would be, “Educating students to inspire them to become active citizens, critical thinkers and enlightened leaders in our global society.”

Cooper got his bachelors degree in Political Science at Dowling College. He received his Masters degree in Educational Leadership K- 12 at Nova Southeastern University.

Tony Lasada

One of the candidates to be LRHS’s new principal is University of Central Florida graduate Tony Losada. Losada is currently an assistant principal at Manatee High School.

“I am a product of Manatee County Schools and a graduate of Southeast High School. After graduating from the UCF, I came back to start my career in Manatee County,” he said.

Losada has over 20 years of experience with the school district as a coach, teacher and assistant principal. His son attends LRHS.

“If you want to be the best you have to join the best,” said Losada.

Dr. Justin Terry

One of the candidates for LRHS principal is Dr. Justin Terry.

Terry currently lives in Sachse, Texas, and has over 12 years of experience in education. Terry holds a Doctorate of Education from Texas A&M University-Commerce, a Masters degree in Education from the University of Texas at Arlington, and a Bachelor’s degree in Science from the East Texas Baptist University.

Terry is also affiliated with 14 different community involvement leadership organizations such as the Cornerstone Kitchen Homeless Ministry and is a Honorary Lifetime Member of Parent Teacher Association.

Terry’s believes that “We owe our children the opportunity to participate in a life of giving and not just taking, a life that puts ‘me’ in proper perspective.”