“Our boys basketball made the playoffs for the second straight season, and although they lost in the first round (to Heritage), they played a great game,” he said. “That’s a team game, so it’s hard to point out individual accomplishments there, but I know that Andrew Garner and Darrell Greene, who were both juniors, contributed a lot, and also Nick Blount, who was a senior.
“I guess the most notable team was the softball team, who made it to the NCS finals, even though nobody expected them to get there.” The softball team accounted for two of the three Falcons who signed to play college sports. Shortstop Kim Westlund will be playing at Cal-Poly San Luis Obispo, and second baseman Sarah Osborn, who was also No. 1 on the tennis team, will be playing tennis at Belmont’s Notre dame De Namur. Senior Jackie Zepeda was the Bay Valley Athletic League’s MVP.
Freedom’s football team had a tough go, posting a 1-9 record. But the Falcons at least finished strong by winning the Bell from Liberty for the fourth straight season, perhaps presaging a successful run this fall. One standout, Daniel Marcel, will be playing football for Southern Oregon University.
The girls volleyball team also struggled this year, but Lindsay Parsons will be playing volleyball at Simpson University in Redding.
Great athletic performances were turned in by water polo star Keaton Lynn and sophomore Kenny Walker, who qualified for the state finals in the 110-meter hurdles. In golf, Ysabel Cabreira and Madison LeRoy qualified for the North Coast Section Tournament.
Amaro is pleased with the success in the past year. “I guess in a sentence, I’m proud to be a Falcon,” he said. “It’s always exciting getting to watch their athletic identities play out and how they achieve their awards and the fame they generate. But I’m much more excited to see how they develop as people and how they become positive contributors to school and society.
I enjoy seeing all the league awards and individual accolades. But it’s much more exciting to hear someone say, ‘I passed this class or I passed this class,’ and to hear how athletics helped them do that. Valedictorians and salutatorians for at least the last two years, maybe longer, have all been athletes. At Freedom, athletics are important because we treat athletics as a way to help people become good students and good contributors to society.”
Amaro believes the athletic program will improve in the upcoming school year. “Each year produces its own individual and unique challenges,” he said. “We are losing a senior class but we are gaining a senior class. I know that the football team is excited because they really feel that last year they laid a strong foundation for this year and they lost few players.
“Girls tennis, on the other hand, is getting ready for the sophomores and juniors to step in and establish themselves as leaders, because they lost eight seniors. I look forward to seeing how the new season of athletes finds ways to represent FHS in different ways.”