Jacinto Intermediate School's National Academic League team
has the opportunity to bring a fourth NAL National
Championship title home to Pasadena as the team will compete
in the national competition's "Sweet 16" level against the
Carson Middle School team in Pittsburgh, PA via
videoconference tomorrow from 10 to 11:30 a.m.
San Jacinto made its way into the
national competition after claiming the district
championship against three-time NAL national champion
Thompson Intermediate with a win/loss record 5-3 for the
season. Thompson took its last NAL national championship
title in 2001. This is San Jacinto's first time to make it
into the national competition.
"Tomorrow's game means many things to
our team," said San Jacinto's head coach Maggie Allen. "It
shows that our team is capable of doing whatever they set
their minds to and that we have many bright students that
excel at many things. It also shows that our team not only
succeeds in academics but that our school's pride and
talents show in their character."
Team members competing in tomorrow's
game include Gustavo Huitron, Quienten Yarbrough, Natalie
Hudson, Daniel Cruz, Brenda Moreno, Aaron Neito, Alvin Pham,
Joel Rivera, Jehnytssa Zetina and Daniel Cobb. Other team
members are Mirna Aguilar, Abel Ballin, Kesta Barber, Cesar
Carrillo, Clayton Day, Ashlie Dotson, Fernando Gonzalez,
Mario Guzman, Micelle Huitron, Daniel Martin, Aracely Munoz,
Xochytl Nunez, Diana Palonco, Alexandra Rivera, Aleyda
Salazar and Eduardo Vazquez.
If San Jacinto beats Pittsburgh in
tomorrow's game, the team will continue on to the "Elite 8"
level of the competition in which it will either compete
against South Charlotte Middle School from Charlotte, NC or
Hanes Middle School from Winston-Salem, NC for a place in
the "Final 4" of the competition.
"Anyone with an interest in the success
of students should watch," said the National Academic League
Commissioner for Pasadena ISD and former Thompson NAL coach
Carolyn Carmichael. "The game will be fast, fun,
educational, stressful and an exciting experience. This is
the perfect example of academic competition at its best."
Because intermediate school students
are not allowed to leave the area for competition, the San
Jacinto team will compete via videoconference from Sam
Rayburn High School's videoconference center. The district
semi-finals and finals were also competed via
videoconference. The game will be streamed live over the
district Internet allowing all Pasadena ISD employees to
view the game at
The link will be active today
until 4 p.m. so the connection can be tested and then it
will be active again starting at 9:45 a.m. tomorrow. It can
not be accessed by computers outside of the district's
"Videoconferencing allows the
intermediate students to compete on a much broader level
including nationally," said Carmichael. "It is also a great
educational experience for the students to see how modern
Parents interested in watching the game
who aren't Pasadena ISD employees are invited to come to the
school tomorrow morning at 3102 San Augustine in Pasadena to
watch as the school is broadcasting it over school
televisions. For more information, please call the school at
Regardless of the outcome of tomorrow's
game, Allen said her NAL students will always be winners.
"I want my team members to understand
that they have done a fantastic job and that I am very proud
of them no matter if we win or lose," said Allen. "They are
all winners in my book, and they can follow any dreams and
goals they set for themselves."