Four Escalon High School seniors were recognized for their cumulative achievements over four years of high school, with awards presented at the May 28 Sports Awards Night.
Earning the Hall-Loureiro Most Inspirational Senior Athlete honors were Alex Jimenez and Sylvia Guevara while the Lloyd C. Engel Most Outstanding Senior Athlete awards were presented to Frank Leal and Hailie Webster.
“We had a few other qualified candidates that made the voting by the coaches close,” explained Escalon Athletic Director Nate Bartelink.
Among the other nominees, two of them especially stood out for their achievements.
“Mikayla Vega and Guillermo Alvarez are two individuals that accomplished great things in their chosen sports and their efforts shouldn’t go unnoticed,” said Bartelink.
Following is information presented at the awards night.
Lloyd C Engel Most Outstanding Female Athlete: Hailie Webster
Hailie Webster is at the very top of her class with a 4.3 GPA. Hailie spent some time playing soccer, but her passion is softball and she has played a very important role on the varsity softball team for all four of her years at EHS. Hailie is a TVL Champion and a three-time Section champion and has made the TVL All League Team for softball. She was also selected as Escalon’s female TVL Scholar Athlete Recipient.
Her varsity softball coach, Art Brooks, had this to say about Hailie:
“Hailie is a special person who puts everyone ahead of herself. That is a quality you don’t find anymore. I believe she can do anything she sets her mind to. Hailie is kind and courteous and treats her coaches and peers with respect. As far as on the softball field, no one works harder than Hailie. Hailie’s strength is just leading by example.”
All of Hailie’s efforts and accomplishments along the way have earned her a scholarship to continue her education and softball career at the University of North Carolina Charlotte.
Lloyd C Engel Most Outstanding Male Athlete: Frank Leal
Frank Leal has participated in three sports, football, basketball and track, each of his four years at EHS. He has been a key contributor for each of his teams while earning just over a 4.0 GPA. He was recently selected as Escalon’s male TVL Scholar Athlete Recipient.
Frank’s football coach for two years, Andrew Beam, had this to say about him:
“It gave me great pleasure to have the opportunity to coach and teach Frank while he was at Escalon High School. Not only was he a great teammate, but one that worked hard and constantly gave his best, regardless if it was practice or games.”
Bartelink also coached the senior, noting: “I had the opportunity to coach Frank for two years as his basketball coach. He always gave great effort and did the little things that didn’t show up on the stat sheet to help our teams have success. He was a good teammate and I am appreciative what he did for our basketball program.”
Hall-Loureiro Most Inspirational Female Athlete: Sylvia Guevara
Sylvia Guevara has participated in basketball and golf during her time at Escalon High School. When healthy, she has been an important member of each team she has been a part of. She has consistently been a member of the honor roll and has actively been involved in other aspects of Escalon High School. Her true inspiration has been the type of teammate and person she has been, demonstrating great character, while experiencing difficult injuries.
According to her basketball coach, Joe Dalpogetti:
“Sylvia is one of the most inspirational athletes I have ever seen. She had infectious enthusiasm all four years on the varsity basketball team. Despite suffering a season-ending injury her senior year she still committed to attending practices and games to encourage and root on her teammates. At the end of the 18-19 season she was nominated by her teammates as our Most Inspirational Player. It was a joy to coach Sylvia all four years and I hope her positive outlook on life and love of basketball has influenced all returning players in the girls’ basketball program.”
Hall-Loureiro Most Inspirational Male Athlete: Alex Jimenez
Alex Jimenez has participated in cross country, wrestling and track during his time at Escalon High School. As a wrestler, he was a three time TVL Champion, two time TVL Most Outstanding Wrestler, three time Division V Champion, four time Masters Qualifier.
According to his wrestling coach, Derek Scott:
“Alex was the hardest working guy in the room. He is everything you want a kid to be. He takes it serious, does all the off-season work. He works hard on everything you say.”
Carrie Nash, his track coach, added “Alex always has a positive attitude and has been willing to try and learn new events. He consistently placed and earned points for the varsity team all four years, in sprints, hurdles, high jump, long jump and both relays. He was part of the 4x400 meter relay that was seventh in the Sac-Joaquin Sections meet this year. Alex is the kid, that when he did not qualify on to the next level, but had a teammate that did, he would come out and work out with them just so that they could have a workout partner. Alex is a motivator. He inspires others with his willingness to work hard and do what needs to be done.”
Honoree Webster said she was appreciative, yet humbled, by her selection.
“I always looked up to people who received things like this,” she said, adding that she wants to serve as an inspiration and a role model for athletes and students to come. “Just work your butt off and always stay motivated, push yourself.”
She will be studying biomedical engineering at UNC Charlotte.
Leal said while it was difficult at times to juggle sports and schoolwork every season, he wouldn’t change it.
“My parents said do a sport, do a club or get a job, so I did sports,” he said, smiling. “Anything with competition, I love to do.
He will start his college career at Modesto Junior College, studying general education.
Guevara said she enjoyed wearing the purple and gold, taking pride in her school.
“Plus I treasure the friendships I made and the life lessons I learned, too,” she said of being involved in sports and other extracurricular activities.
She plans to attend San Joaquin Delta College and play basketball, while also studying psychology.
For his part, Jimenez said sports were a huge help to him.
“That’s what got me through high school, it kept me motivated,” he said.
Jimenez will be leaving for the Air Force in the fall and plans to study criminology.
“I’m definitely going to miss all these guys,” he said of his fellow EHS students. “It has been a great time.”