Author Archives: hrynor

BASKETBALL STAR’S SCORING, SCORES RECOGNITION

By Jessica Wasserstein and Brittany Wasserstein
 
Led by senior Jessica Barrios with an 11-4 record, the Lady Hi-Tides basketball team currently holds a guarenteed spot for playoffs. 
Barrios leads District 6A in scoring, with 27.4 points a game, and was named “athlete of the week” back-to-back weeks by the Miami Herald. In those two weeks combined, she averaged 113 points, 35 assists, and 30 steals.

“I had no idea I scored so much,” Barrios said. “I was just doing whatever I needed to do in that moment.”

Jacob Shaw, varsity girls’ basketball coach, explains this type of individual performance is truly a rare sight. “The way she has been playing lately is amazing,” Shaw said. “You only get a player like this once every ten years.” 

 
Barrios practices on an entirely different level than the rest of her team, Shaw explains. “All you guys see us do is run stairs but you guys do not understand the extra effort and commitment Barrios has dedicated,” Shaw said. “She stays with me practicing and working out with me in my own gym.” 
 
According to Barrios, she will practice, on average, a total of four hours a day.
 
“She’s confident and she expresses herself very well,” Ivy Swanes, sophomore captain, said. “She’s captain for a reason and I’m glad to have played with her.”
 
Born in Venezuela and playing basketball since the age of four, Barrios moved to Spain at the age of 13 where she continued sharpening her basketball skills. She then moved to the U.S. when she was 16.  
 

Barrios explains, as a child, she was active in a variety of sports. “In second grade I played soccer, basketball, did karate, and swimming,” she said. “I had to pick one sport and I picked basketball because I was sure it was the sport I loved.”
Barrios has attracted attention from collegiate basketball teams, being recruited by Harvard, Yale, New Jersey Institute of Technology, Marshall University and Davidson College.
 
“It’s like a balloon of expectations that gets bigger with every offer,” Barrios said. “And that only gives me more gas to work even harder for my dream.”         
 
Barrios is gratified for the oppurtunity to go to college for her passion, basketball, and for academics. She plans on studying engineering at whichever college she attends.

“Right now, I hope to contribute to my team as much as possible,” Barrios said. “Whatever my future comes out to be, I’m just enjoying the process and having a lot fun.”

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DIVING FOR GOLD

By Joselyn Garcia
 
Making three and-a-half back flips with a smooth landing, better known as the 3 1/2 pike, is just one dive that has Beach High senior Francisco “Hunter” Becerra on his way to the 2012 Olympics.

“There is no stopping what he is capable of,” Sunday Lewandowski, diving coach, said. “He is throwing tricks that are at the top of the top. He has no fear at every level of competition”

At the young age of thirteen Becerra placed third at the USA Junior Diving Region 7 Competition. Becerra has competed in diving competitions throughout high school, never finishing lower than first place in his three years at Districts. As a junior, he placed first at States and was named the number two high school diver in the country by USA Diving. However, due to injury, Becerra was unable to defend his title this year, finishing third.   

Hunter fell victim to a sprained right foot, putting his diving asirations on hold. “I basically iced my foot and was not able to walk for a couple of days.”  In addition to the sprain, Hunter explained he decided to take some time off to bring up his GPA. “I made up all of my work and my grades are back on track,” he said. 

For Becerra, diving is not only a school-based activity but a family one as well. “My dad was also a diver and therefore influenced me to dive at an early age of 8,” he said. Becerra’s family continues to motivate him and show their support by attending his meets.  

In preparation for difficult dives, Hunter modifies his state of mind. “I do get nervous some times. I am human,  but I tell myself I can beat him [the opposition]. I can do this. I can’t mess up,” Becerra explained.

Becerra’s talent and professional mindset has colleges lined up to recruit him for scholarships. “I want to go to either the University of Miami, University of Florida, or the University of Texas, because I do not like the cold weather, and would prefer to stay in the Southern region.”

In addition to diving at the collegiate level, Becerra still has his ultimate goal at heart.

“I have worked really hard to make it where I am today in the sport of diving, and I am determined to dive for the USA at the Olympics in 2012.”

CLASS OF ’58 SET TO PRESENT NEW TROPHY CASES

By Aaron Groff

With roughly $7,000 leftover from their 50-year reunion celebration, the Beach High class of 1958 agreed to use the extra funds for brand-new trophy cases to display the school’s athletic acheivements.

Miami Beach Senior High has a long history of success in all fields of competition. However, the trophies have gone unnoticed for the past four years, since the old autidorium was demolished in 2005. “They have been hidden away in safe keeping,” said Edgar Botto, Athletic Director.

Stanley Schwartz, class of 1958, recently met with Principal Rosann Sidener to discuss possible uses for the extra money. Together, Sidener and Schwartz deemed new trophy cases a necessity.

Next to the two six-foot by 50-inch trophy cases purchased by Botto, two plaques will read “Honoring Miami Beach Senior High Acheivement through the Years. Donated by the Beach High class of 1958.”

The formal dedication of the new gym, along with the presentation of the cases and plaques by members of the class of ’58, is on hold pending the arrival of school banners displaying the Beach High alma mater.