By Grace Freeman
Photos by Kevin McInnis & Kurt Johnson
In the fall of 2016, Skyridge High School opened its doors for the first time, creating new opportunities for students, teachers and athletes. People worried how the split of Lehi and Skyridge would affect the sports programs for both schools.
It was a valid concern, as the kids who made up one high school sports program before would now have to fill the spots for two separate schools. There was a lot of doubt whether either school would win any games at all during the first year, however, that sentiment didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of the athletes attending the new school.
Instead, they were fueled by the desire to make a mark and start something new. Their enthusiasm has transitioned into one of the best years of sporting success many of the athletes have ever experienced.
The success began with the very first football game, which Skyridge won. The school split allowed more opportunity to kids who hadn’t had a chance to perform in previous years.
The football team had a great season and a winning record that was somewhat unexpected. Players such as Wyatt Parkinson and Cody Frampton were frequently mentioned on the sports page of local newspapers and other athletes feel their sports have benefited as well.
“It was hard to split and have some of the girls stay at Lehi, we were all so close and worked together very well. But with it splitting, we have had lots of girls step up to fill the big shoes,” said volleyball player Reagan Calton. We were state champs last year, and we hope for that again. I was sad to split from my good friends at Lehi, but I am happy to be at Skyridge.”
The soccer team also feels like the split was a great benefit to its program.
“We lost some key players by splitting and a lot of good friends but I think it made us stronger because we definitely had to step up and it made us grow closer as a team, and we had to prove ourselves over again,” Cassie Clegg said. “We didn’t have the program or the name we used to have at Lehi, so we were able to step up and prove ourselves by getting to the quarterfinals. We had a good run, and I feel like we set the legacy and it can only get better form here.”
Megan Bartholomew from the cross country team talked about the benefits of the school split.
“I think it gave the team a stronger bond, because we all went through the change together,” Bartholomew said. “It is always hard to adjust to new surroundings but the team has so much team spirit and has represented the school well. No one expected us to make it to state, but we made a name for ourselves. The change has been for the best and has allowed us to establish new goals as a new team and to reach farther.”
It really is remarkable that in the year 2016, several sports teams have made it into playoff situations the first year of a new high school. That, in and of itself, is reason to believe that the split was a great benefit to the athletes who attend Skyridge.
Skyridge High student Grace Freeman wrote this story as part of the Preps Utah student journalism program, powered by Bank of American Fork, which will award two of our published student journalists college scholarships at the end of the school year.