Brandeis, Brennan, and Jay Air Force JROTC teams win national championships

May 15, 2018

Three Northside high school Air Force ROTC programs brought back national championships from the National High School Drill Team Championships and Fitness Challenge in Daytona Beach, Fla.

The Blue Aces Unarmed Drill Team from Brandeis High School won the National Championship in the Masters Level competition.

The Phoenix Armed Drill Team from Brennan High School won its first National Championship in the Challenge Level competition. The Brennan Spartan Bears also won their second straight National Championship in the Mixed Division Fitness Challenge.

The Silver Eagles Armed Drill Team from Jay High School won their 12th straight Air Force National Championship.

Six Northside high school ROTC programs took part in this year’s competition which pits the “best of the best” high school drill teams in the country from the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force.

Brandeis High School AFJROTC

Brandeis HS ROTC cadets pose with national champion trophy

The Blue Aces Unarmed Drill Team, commanded by Cadet Major Monique Bienen, was crowned National Champions in the Masters Level. They placed second in the inspection phase, second in the regulation phase, third in the element exhibition phase and third in the flight exhibition phase. The Color Guard, commanded by Cadet Taylor Downs, placed fourth. Cadet Bienen placed second in the commander phase. The Blue Aces were also crowned the 2018 Air Force National Champions.

The Nighthawks Armed Drill Team, commanded by Cadet Lt Colonel Jaden Dapilmoto, placed ninth overall in the Masters Level Demilitarized Arms Drill competition. They placed fourth in the squad exhibition phase and fifth in the regulation phase. Cadet Dapilmoto also placed sixth in the commander phase. In the Armed Tandem category, Cadet Dapilmoto and Cadet Major Nicholas Barrera placed third.

The Lady Aces, commanded by Cadet Master Sergeant Sofia Salinas, finished eighth in the Challenge Level Open Color Guard competition and the Raptors, commanded by Cadet Master Sergeant Damian Hauser, finished in 15th place out of 43 teams.

The Praetorians physical training team, commanded by Cadet Colonel Karter Bonillas, were Runner-Up Champions in the Mixed Division of the Fitness Challenge. The team placed first in pull-ups and flex-arm hang, fourth in the power throw, fifth in the standing broad jump and physical training team challenge, and eighth in the 3K team run.

Brennan High School AFJROTC

ROTC cadets pose with national champion trophy

The Phoenix Armed Drill Team, commanded by Cadet Captain Weston Ohm, won the National Championship in the Challenge Level placing first out of 32 teams from around the country and overseas. This is the first title for The Phoenix since the Brennan AF JROTC program began. They placed first in exhibition drill, second in inspection and Color Guard, and fourth in regulation drill.

For the second straight year, the Spartan Bears Physical Fitness team, commanded by Cadet Captain Devin Williams, won the National Championship in the Mixed Division of the Fitness Challenge. They placed first in pull-ups, standing broad jump and the physical fitness team test. They placed second in the 3K team run.

Fitness team poses on beach after ROTC Fitness Challenge National Championship

The Phoenix Guard, commanded by Cadet Lt. Colonel and TX-20101 Corp Commander Allison Hajny, finished second in the Challenge Level Open Color Guard competition.

The Blue Elite Unarmed Drill Team, commanded by Cadet Captain Julia Pina, finished ninth in their category.

Clark High School AFJROTC

The nationally-ranked Clark High School Armed Drill Team, the Centurion Guard, placed seventh overall in the Masters Level Demilitarized Arms competition. They placed second in the Armed Inspection category and fifth in the platoon exhibition phase.

Clark’s nationally-ranked Unarmed Drill Team, Silver Valor, placed third overall in the Masters Level competition and second place in the Air Force World Championships. The team earned first place in the unarmed regulation category, fourth place in unarmed element exhibition, second place in unarmed flight exhibition, fifth place in the unarmed dual exhibition, and sixth place in unarmed inspection. The Unarmed Color Guard took third place. Cadet Colonel Kristen Gonzalez, competing in her last National Drill Competition, was named the top All-Service commander and brought home the first place Unarmed Drill Team Commander Award.  

The Clark Physical Fitness Team competed in the Fitness Challenge for the first time, placing second in the 3K team beach run, third in the obstacle course, and fourth in pull-ups and flex-arm hang.

Jay HS AFJROTC

Jay ROTC Silver Eagles armed drill team competes during competition

The Silver Eagles Armed Drill Team won their 12th straight Air Force National Championship and finished second in the Demilitarized Arms Masters Level competition. They placed first in demilitarized squad exhibition, second in demilitarized regulation, second in demilitarized color guard, and third in demilitarized platoon exhibition. Commander Christopher Flores placed first in the Commanders Competition. 

The Marching Mustangs Armed Drill Team finished third in Demilitarized Mixed/Alternative Arms Division which is part of the Masters Level competition. The Marching Mustangs are comprised of both males and females. They placed first in mixed regulation, first in mixed platoon exhibition, third in mixed color guard, and Commander Abigail Victela placed first in the Commanders Competition.  

The Snap II Unarmed Drill Team competed in the Unarmed Masters Level competition placing sixth overall. They placed first in unarmed element exhibition, second in unarmed color guard, and third in unarmed regulation.

The Blue Knights Open Color Guard Team finished fourth out of 43 schools in the Challenge Level Open Color Guard competition and the SNAP II Guard finished in seventh place.

The Sentinels Physical Fitness Team placed fifth overall in the Male Division of the Fitness Challenge. They placed second in the male seated power throw. Team Commander Antonio Contreras placed first in the “Ultimate Fitness Cadet” competition and placed first in the male seated power throw. Brandon Saucedo won third place.

O’Connor High School AFJROTC

O’Connor High School’s Armed Drill Team, Rolling Thunder, placed eighth overall in the Masters Level Demilitarized Arms competition.

The Unarmed Drill Team, the Mighty Panthers, placed 16th in the Masters Level Unarmed Drill competition. Cadet Hernandez placed fifth in the Unarmed Commander Trophy competition.

The Panther Guard competed finished in 36th place in the Challenge Level Open Color Guard competition.

The team of Cadets Saldivar and Esquivel placed seventh in the Unarmed Dual Exhibition.

Stevens High School AFJROTC

Stevens drill team cadets compete at national competition

The Stevens High School Midnight Falcons were runner-up National Champions in the Challenge Level Armed Overall Championship.

The Silver Falconettes Unarmed Drill Team placed 19th in their category.