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FCHS Tiger Battalion qualifies for nationals with state titles

With a dominant showing at the state drill meet, the Fayette County High Army JROTC Tiger Battalion has their eyes set on a national championship.

At their recent competition, the Tigers were named state champions in Color Guard and Armed Platoon, with a 3rd place finish in Armed Squad, 5th place in Female Color Guard, and 5th place in Unarmed Squad.

The FCHS Army JROTC Tiger Battalion is commanded by senior and Drill Captain Kayce Davis, senior Grace Picklesimer, junior and Drill Captain Joshua Achiu, and Junior Briyana Wheeler.

Drill team members are Morgan Wucher, Manny Jones, Janelle Valencia, Mitch Howard, Machaia Gross, Saige Cordero, Emma Garcia, Vishal Nag Chowdhuri, Jaretzi Valencia, Myles Shavers, Xavier Dawson, Ronnell Rolf, Lenyaw Colemore, Kamren Madison, Dominic Durant, and Morgan Griffin.

The squad is under the direction of First Sergeant Anthony Bell, Sr.

“I’m super proud of the drill team. Out of 34 schools, just placing in a competitive event like the state drill meet is a major accomplishment,” said Bell. “I’m especially proud to see my young commanders develop and mature into leaders right before my eyes. They were poised, and they refused to be rattled all season long.”

Championships require buy-in from every member of the drill team.

“Commanders have a huge responsibility because their sequences must be memorized without error,” said Bell. “Drill members learn discipline, attention to detail, self control, stress tolerance, analytical thinking, dependability, and so much more.”

They are proud to represent their school in everything they do.

“We refuse to settle for mediocrity, and we believe in the school motto, ‘Excellence In All We Do.’ We ask ourselves three questions weekly: Why do we practice? To be prepared! Why do we practice? To be perfect! Why do we practice? To WIN!,” said Bell. “This has been the driving factor behind our success.”

The strong showing at state qualifies the Tiger Battalion for a spot at the national competition in Richmond, Virginia.

“Our next goal is a national title.”

By Michael Cuneo

Michael Cuneo is a news and sports reporter for the Fayette County News. Michael graduated from Georgia State University with a degree in Journalism in 2020. In his off time, Michael enjoys torturing himself as an Atlanta Falcons fan. Follow Michael on twitter @michaelcune