HISTORY OF ZEPHYRHILLS HIGH SCHOOL

Highlights of 1990-1991

Valedictorian Series, St. Petersburg Times, June 1, 1991, Special Section

ZHS Valedictorian: Beth Ables Age: 18 College: University of South Florida; plans to study pre-medicine Extracurricular activities: National Honor Society, student council vice president, yearbook staff, art Quote: "I'd like to study either psychiatry or plastic surgery. If you can't fix the inside, fix the outside." Salutatorian: Heidi Grimes.


St. Petersburg Times, June 1, 1991

Outstanding Student Award for the District went to Aaron Saguil from Hudson High. School outstanding student for each high school were as follows: Gulf High: Tisha Milla Hudson High: Aaron Saguil Land O’ Lakes High: Kevin Bond Pasco Comprehensive High: Jonathan Newlon Ridgewood High: Matt Torrence; Zephyrhills High: Holly Anne Timmons National Merit Scholarship Finalists were: Gulf High: Byron Hartsfield Pasco Comprehensive High: Jonathan Newlon Ridgewood High: Colby Mills Hudson High: Aaron Saguil. Prospective Educator Scholarship Awards went to: Angeleeta Sosnowski from Hudson High Pride Awards Mathematics: Danielle Lamay from Hudson High Science: Aaron Saguil from Hudson High Social Studies: Michael Ryan from Ridgewood High Writing: Colby Mills from Ridgewood High. All Pasco high schools will hold graduation ceremonies Friday. Gulf High School: 8 p.m. Hudson High School: 7:30 p.m. Land O’ Lakes High School: 8 p.m. Pasco Comprehensive High School: 8 p.m. Ridgewood High School: 8 p.m. Zephyrhills High School: 8 p.m.


St. Petersburg Times by Suzanne Hayes, July 18, 1991 in Pasco Times Section

The Zephyrhills Civitan Club presented its second annual Uncle Sam awards to three Zephyrhills High School students at the Fourth of July celebration at the Woman's Club in Zephryhills. Civitan president Anne Meteer presented the awards to Holly Timmons, Steve Brown and Michael Eddy.

First-place winner Timmons was voted best all-around and outstanding student by her senior class peers and outstanding female student by the administrative staff of her school. She is editor of the yearbook, a top player on the school tennis team, and is an active member of the First United Methodist Church of Zephyrhills. She is the daughter of Edward R. and Lynn Timmons.

Steve Brown, second-place winner, is active in the youth program at the First Baptist Church in Zephyrhills, where he sings in the youth choir. He was elected senior class president. Steve is the son of Stephen and Debbie Brown.
Third-place winner Michael Eddy is an honors graduate of Zephyrhills High School, a member of the National Honor Society and a Florida Academic Scholar. He also received the Marine Corp Musician Award for his musical accomplishments and is a recipient of a Pasco-Hernando Community College scholarship. He is the son of James and Sharon Eddy of Zephyrhills. Schools, churches, friends, neighbors or businesses are invited to nominate students for the annual awards. Nominations should be for youth 18 and younger who are outstanding leaders or outstanding followers, and who are active in school, church, community and family. The Plant City Civitan Club selected this year's winners from the nominees.


St. Petersburg Times, by Jim Carson, Page 4 of Pasco Times Section, September 27, 1991

Pasco High football coach Perry Brown says thanks for the compliment, but look him up in a few more weeks to see if his Pirates deserve it.

"Don't get me wrong, I like the ranking, it's good for the program," said Brown, whose 2-0 team is rated fourth in the state Class 3A poll, thanks largely to last year's 8-3 season when the Pirates defeated St. Cloud 46-43 in overtime in the Osceola Scholarship Bowl.

"But I know the ranking will fire Zephyrhills up. I know I'd being telling them, `This is the same bunch ya'll have whipped - kicked their butts - five years in a row and they're ranked ahead of you? What is this?' It kind of makes you wonder.

"Our only concern is to prove we deserve the ranking at the end of the year." Brown won't have to wait beyond tonight to find how good his team really is. The Pirates meet arch-rival Zephyrhills at home at 8 in a key 3A-District 7 game.

Zephyrhills will be going for its sixth straight win over Pasco.

Zephyrhills coach Tom Fisher denied that Pasco's ranking is a motivation for his 2-0 team, which did not receive a single vote for inclusion in this week's poll.

"I don't have to tell our kids what this game means - it's Dade City-Zephyrhills," Fisher said. "It's just a given. It's something we've got to do, something we've got to have.

"I don't concern my kids with ratings. They just have to stay level-headed and not worry about things like that. With Pasco going in there fourth in the state, they may have the wrong attitude. There rating is fine for them, but the only time I worry about ratings is at the end of the year when it counts."

Pasco was rated sixth in the preseason poll conducted by the Florida Sports Writers Association and strangely moved up to fifth after narrowly defeating Crystal River 14-13 at home in the season opener.

"We sure didn't play like the No. 5 team in the state in that game," Brown said. "But we have some leaders on this team and they met after the game and they told the team they had to tighten up and get their heads out of the clouds.

"I think their leadership is one of an accumulation of things that makes our program successful. I think we as coaches have a tendency to do the leading for them, but we're on the sidelines during the game. We stand back and let them lead. And they told the team the same things I would have if I had spoken to them."

Indeed, Pasco came back and thrashed River Ridge 63-0 in its second game. The Pirates moved up to No. 4 in the poll. Still, Brown said the game can't be used as a true barometer because River Ridge is a first-year school that is expected to take its lumps.

Zephyrhills, on the other hand, is a team similar to Pasco. Both have star running backs (Mike Penix for Pasco and Booker Pickett for Zephyrhills), solid quarterbacks (Pasco's Dee Reed and Zephyrhills' Marcus McCants) and aggressive, hard-hitting defenses.

"They are similar to us in a lot of aspects," said Brown, a third-year coach who has turned around a program that was 2-8 his first year.

"We're both so aggressive; I hope we don't go out and beat each other up. Zephyrhills will be a big test, and if we can get out of this game 3-0 with an open date next week, we'll be in pretty good shape."

Fisher, too, would like to go to 3-0.

"The unknowns will determine this game," Fisher said. "Some untested kid, some unsung hero, will have to emerge. We'll have to play near-perfect to win. Pasco has the horses. They have the speed and talent."

Fisher was referring mainly to Penix, who rushed for 209 yards and three touchdowns on seven carries against River Ridge. He is averaging 12.2 yards and has 256 total.

But Zephyrhills has a colt of its own in Pickett, who gained 196 yards and ran for two touchdowns in a 36-0 victory over Hudson last week. Pickett leads the county with 265 yards.

"We'll see Friday night which is the best," Fisher said. "They should get an equal number of carries. It should be a good matchup."

Pickett, at 6 feet 3 and 210 pounds, is more of a power runner than the 6-1, 185-pound Penix.

"Mike is a shifty runner who is more elusive while Pickett will just power right over you," Brown said. "Mike is ready for this game. He is eager to prove himself."

And perhaps Fisher wants to prove his team deserves its share of recognition despite its underdog role.

"I don't really mind being the underdog; I wouldn't mind being the underdog every week," he said. "They have to put their uniforms and play just like us. These are 15-, 16-, 17-year-old kids. They'll either be horses or horses' a---s."

Said Brown, "You never know. So many things can happen. That's why we line up and play."


O’Neil Takes Second in State Golf Tournament, St. Petersburg Times, by Kevin Thomas, May 3, 1991

Erin O'Neil closed to within two strokes of the lead. A sophomore at Zephyrhills High, O'Neil knew the opportunity before her.

But she also knows her golf swing, and O'Neil knows when something is wrong.

"I pulled my driver a few times and I lost my confidence with it. And I didn't have confidence with my irons," O'Neil said after finishing second in the high school girls state tournament at Foxfire Golf Club.


O'Neil's finish was the best among area golfers in the boys and girls state tournaments. In the boys tournament at Misty Creek Country Club, Hernando sophomore Blane Brown, who shot 71 Wednesday, followed with an 85 Thursday for a 156 total, well behind the leaders.

O'Neil stayed in contention by recovering from two quick bogeys to birdie No. 4 with a 30-foot putt. At the turn, she was 2-over-par for 27 holes, two strokes behind leader Dina Taylor of Deltona.

But O'Neil bogeyed 10 while Taylor, playing one group behind, would birdie both 10 and 11. Taylor shot 72 for a 2-under total of 142, six strokes ahead of runner-up O'Neil.

"I thought I had my chances, but the putts wouldn't drop," said O'Neil, whose 148 was 11 strokes better than her 1990 score.

The Zephyrhills team finished third, shooting 20 strokes higher on Thursday. "We would have liked a close battle," said Zephyrhills coach Ann Crawford, whose team fell 28 strokes behind runner-up Venice and 44 behind champion Coral Springs-Taravella. "But we just didn't shoot well."

Zephyrhills' No. 2 golfer, Lisa Ezick, shot 81 for a 163 total, placing ninth. Crystal River's Tricia Laxton shot 84-83-167.


Zephyrhills Lifters Repeat As Conference Champions, St. Petersburg Times, by Joanne Korth and Cammy Clark, April 9, 1991

The Zephyrhills High weightlifting dynasty is as strong as ever.

Jamie Custalow (123 pounds), Dan Peeples (148) and Rudy Hicks (165) each won a weight class title Saturday to lead the Bulldogs to their third consecutive Gulf Coast Conference Championship.

The Bulldogs finished with 47 points. Ridgewood and Pasco tied for second with 26, followed by Crystal River (22), Hernando (20), South Sumter (14), Hudson and Springstead (17 each), Central and Lecanto (9 each) and Land O’ Lakes (3).

Zephyrhills has gone 24-0 in regular-season dual meets since the area instituted weightlifting as a sport four years ago. The conference did not give a championship for weightlifting during the inaugural season.

The Bulldogs have qualified 14 wrestlers for the state meet April 20 at East Lake High. But only nine wrestlers from one school are allowed to compete. Last year Zephyrhills took eighth in the state meet.

"The kids did real good (Saturday)," Zephyrhills coach Bruce Cimorelli said. "I knew if they lifted what they were capable of lifting, we would have a good shot of winning the championship again."

The top two finishers from each weight class were named to the All-GCC team.


Zephyrhills Girls Edge Haines City-Girls Basketball, St. Petersburg Times, by Cammy Clark, Wayne McNight, Don Lee and Rich Gershman, January 4, 1991
Zephyrhills guard Penny Hierlihy said Haines City high was intimidating because of its size, but that didn't stop the Bulldogs basketball team from pulling out a 52-51 home victory Thursday night.

LaRosa Smith made one of two foul shots to give Haines City a 51-48 lead with four minutes to play. But it would be the last point Haines City would score.

The Bulldogs' Tawnya Booker answered with a basket in the lane at the 2:44 mark.

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