Well Highlights, here you are.
It still doesn't feel real.
Our streak ended my junior year, our 12th year, just before unlucky number 13. It's been two years since Stayton has seen a state title.
You did what we were unable to (more realistically, not allowed to) do for two years.
You've started our legacy again.
I hope you don't feel pressure to start another streak, though. That's not important right now. You've brought a sense of pride back to us alumnae and your community and that's all you need to worry about.
That, and celebrating what you've done.
Eat your cake, drink your sparkling apple cider, wear your medals to school, and wait for that new banner to go up (even though that probably won't happen until the middle of summer).
Wake up every morning and know that you dedicated yourself to something so much bigger than you could ever imagine.
Wake up knowing you are the best and go to bed at night humbled by the hard work you and others before you have put into returning Big Blue to his home.
We're all so proud of you. Both of your performances were breathtaking and the dedication you have shown to this sport and your team this season is incredible.
Being a Highlight is not an easy thing. It isn't like playing any other sport, and it isn't even like being on other dance teams. No one understands that like you do now.
You work so hard, you sacrifice so much (social lives, family events, weekends, bodily health) and very rarely are you rewarded to the full extent you deserve to be.
This season is one of those moments.
Every single second of pain and frustration has paid off and you will go down in history. You are the team of 2017.
You are the 2017 4A/3A/2A/1A State Champions and no one else can claim that or take that from you.
You will get to sew that into the back of your team jacket, you will get to hang your medal up in your room, you will get to wear your (probably too big unless your'e an upperclassmen) State Champion shirt, and you will get to have your very own banner next to 12 others in the gym.
We're jealous of you, those of us who will never dance or know that feeling again, but we're so proud of you. We wish we could be you, but we're so glad you didn't have to feel the pain that we did.
Only five of you knew what it felt like to win, but most of you knew what it felt like to lose.
We're all so thankful that you decided to keep going.
Thank you for not giving up.
Thank you for not letting the struggles of the past two seasons stop you.
Thank you for pushing back against those who wanted you to lose the most.
Thank you for representing our team in the best of ways.
Thank you for starting to heal the pain of the past two seasons.
Thank you for giving us a reason to believe.
On behalf of the senior classes of 2015 and 2016, thank you.
You have restored what was lost to us.
(Mr. Kymberlin, Tortoise, Run Forest Run, Tymberlin)