By Peter Day
Seniors Samantha Sidney and Jake Kline were named the valedictorian and salutatorian for the Lucerne Valley High School Class of 2019 during the Senior Awards and Scholarship Ceremony on May 14 at the high school.
Brody Evans was selected the Best Overall for the class, and the prestigious Crystal Mustang award went to David Cummings. Both Evans and Cummings were cited by Principal Nate Lambdin not only for their accomplishments in the classroom but for their willingness to go beyond to help their school and others.
Athletic director Brandon Barkley presented the Gabrielson Student of the Year awards to Jasmine Villanueva and Donovan Moncrief. Villanueva is multi-sport athlete who starred on the school’s softball, basketball, soccer and volleyball. Moncrief is regarded as a rare basketball talent who was selected to the Agape League’s First Team. He averaged 17 points and 10 rebounds per game during the 2018-19 season.
Lucerne Valley High School’s two best athletes will be considered for Gabrielson Project scholarships of $1,500 or $500 that honor the area’s best high school senior athletes. The 24th annual Gabrielson Awards will be held in early June. The Gabrielson Awards are presented by the Rick Gabrielson Memorial Fund, which operates under the High Desert Community Foundation. The scholarship fund was created in 1994 and has given away more than $100,000 since its creation.
Student Kathy Gaeta was given the Helping Hands Award by school counselor Rebecca Rubio. Lucerne Valley students are required to volunteer a minimum of 60 hours to graduate. Gaeta volunteered a total of 343 hours.
The Class of 2019’s Top 10 students (in alphabetical order): Jose Alba (3.53 GPA), David Cummings (3.38), Brody Evans (3.32), Rebekah Hart (3.39), Kylee Horton (3.47), Lacey Kalinowski (3.47) Allen “Jake” Kline (3.80), Elijah Lien (3.34), Jesus “Jesse” Perez (3.21) and Samantha Sidney (3.88).
Ms. Rubio presented the top 10 students. Lambdin, who recently was named a district assistant superintendent, gave opening and closing remarks.
“The seniors here never put people down,” Lambdin said of the 36 members of the 2019 Class, “they pulled people up.”
Peter Day is a social media advisor for the Lucerne Valley Unified School District.
PHOTOS BY PETER DAY
Lucerne Valley High School’s Class of 2019 Top 10 students, (top row, from left): Samantha Sidney, Jesse Perez, Elijah Lien, Jake Kline, Lacey Kalinowski; (bottom row): Kylee Horton, Rebekah Hart, Brody Evans, David Cummings and Jose Alba.