Ranger danger: Lake Region wins second straight soccer title

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copyright the Chronicle November 8, 2017

 

by Brad Usatch

 

SOUTH BURLINGTON — They were tried and tested, but in the end the Lake Region Union High School Rangers left Munson Field at South Burlington High School just as they had arrived: as the reigning Division II soccer champions for the state of Vermont.

Up 2-0 in the second half, the top ranked Rangers (15-2) weathered a two-goal rally by the sixth-seeded Harwood Union Highlanders (10-4-1) before Brady Perron seized the championship with a golden goal header just 5:57 into the overtime period.

It has been an incredible run for a talented group led by senior snipers Riley Urie and Brady Perron. The Rangers ran the table last year (18-0) to win the school’s first ever soccer title in the team’s first finals appearance since 1978. In 2015 they also finished the regular season undefeated before falling to U-32 in the semifinals. Over the past four seasons, Lake Region has racked up a combined record of 62-6, capped by a pair of silver championship bowls for the display case.

In addition to the team’s offensive stars, this year’s seniors include goaltender Liam Kennedy who came up with a number of big saves on Saturday, starting fullbacks Noah Royer, Bradey Kerr, and Gabe Riendeau, and forward Chad Royer.

“Most of us have been together since we were like seven years old,” Kennedy said, “so we’ve grown together as a team. It’s great. It’s amazing. There’s no better feeling than this, especially in our senior year.”

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Sara Doncaster brings the local hills alive with music

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copyright the Chronicle October 18, 2017

 

by Elizabeth Trail

 

“Everyone has a voice,” Sara Doncaster says.

It’s that philosophy, on every level, that has propelled the Lake Region Union High School music teacher into the spotlight as this year’s runner-up Vermont Teacher of the Year.

At the most obvious interpretation, “Dr. D,” as her students call her, means that the human voice is the one musical instrument that every person carries around all the time.

But on a more subtle level, it explains a lot about Ms. Doncaster’s teaching.

She’s all about finding the unique talents within each of her students. And that goes back to her own girlhood, when the love of music led an Irasburg farm girl to Boston University, where she double-majored in music theory and composition and piano performance. Eventually she earned a PhD from Brandeis University in theory and composition.

Ms. Doncaster comes from a family that lived and breathed music as naturally as they made hay and milked cows.

Her father, Wayne Doncaster Sr., didn’t learn to read music until his forties, when he bought a steel guitar and took his first lessons. Until then, he played by ear. He had a fine country and western voice and perfect pitch, she said.

Her mother, Elizabeth Doncaster, grew up a city girl in Newport, with piano and voice lessons.

And even though it was a financial hardship, the couple owned a piano, and all of their children played.

Elizabeth Doncaster was not only a farm wife and mother, but also a nurse. Still, she always found time for music.

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Lake Region continues to beat the odds

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copyright the Chronicle July 5, 201

 

by Brad Usatch

 

When U.S. News and World Report issued its 2017 rankings of Vermont public high schools, no one should have been surprised to see Lake Region Union High School near the top of the list. For five of the past six years, Lake Region has earned a silver medal in the annual review. This year it was rated eighth best in the state and in the top 10 percent nationally.

The rankings, according to the U.S. News and World Report website, are determined through a four-part test. Step one compares how students perform on standardized tests in math and English language skills compared to other students in the state. Step two measures the success of economically disadvantaged students against what would be statistically expected in the state. Step three factors in graduation rates. Step four uses advanced placement (AP) test performance to determine college readiness.

The class of 2017 was particularly impressive, according to Principal Andre Messier, who said the bar keeps getting raised by each successive senior class that comes through. While the class boasted a 91 percent graduation rate, with 35 percent of seniors taking at least one AP course, Mr. Messier said what marks this group as exceptional is their courage to leave Vermont and expand their range of experiences. A number of the students are heading off to highly competitive college programs, including Harvard University, the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, Middlebury College, Ohio State University, and McGill University in Montreal.

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LRUHS — A very good school has a very good year

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copyright the Chronicle June 7, 2017

 

by Tena Starr

 

Lake Region Union High School Principal Andre Messier had nothing but good to say about this year’s graduating class at the school’s annual awards night last Thursday. Awards night recognizes students in all grades, but Mr. Messier focused on the seniors and the school itself, which U.S. News and World Report has once again ranked in the top ten high schools in Vermont. This year it’s eighth.

“This is my favorite night of the year,” Mr. Messier said. Students get recognition when they win in sports and other events, he noted. “But rarely do we get to focus on the academic side.”

Towards the end of the program when he handed out the Presidential Awards for Academic Excellence, he said: “This group of seniors has set the bar, the standard, for this school. Those of you who are younger have something to chase.” He added that he fully expects them to do that, of course.

Eighteen students received the Presidential Award: They are: Maria Brosseau, Hunter Cota, Rebecca Doucet, Hunter Duquette, Margo Foster, Emily Klar, Elizabeth Locke, Avery Marcotte, Ashley Morrill, Olivia Owens, Andrew Parkinson, Colton Porter, April Streeter, Katherine Whipple, Alexis Rodgers, Sam King, Zachary Hale, and Erin Smith.

Mr. Messier also noted that this is the sixth year in a row that U.S. News has recognized Lake Region for outstanding achievement.

“That’s something this community should be extremely proud of,” he said. “That’s six consecutive years that the students who have come through Lake Region have maintained this.”

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Mock crash makes powerful point

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copyright the Chronicle May 24, 2017

 

by Joseph Gresser

 

When the Lake Region Union High School student body poured into the bright sunshine on the morning of May 17, they saw a horrific sight. Two wrecked cars stood in the drop-off area, one with a young woman lying on the hood in a pool of blood.

As gruesome as the scene was, it was not a surprise. The entire school had just watched a student-created video depicting the events leading to the tragic scene laid out before them.

A young man, texting as he drove his blue car down the road, was seen just before he plowed head-on into a red car filled with happy teens.   The screen went black as the cars collided, although the audience could hear the Sheriff’s Department dispatcher taking a report of the smash-up.

The student actors were in place as their classmates gathered around. Student videographers were positioned in the area, as they shot footage for another cautionary film.

Members of the Orleans Fire Department, Orleans Ambulance, and the Orleans County Sheriff’s Department were also in position, and at the signal from Sheriff’s Department Captain Phil Brooks, they went into action.

Captain Brooks narrated as the firefighters checked the two cars, evaluated the potential for immediate danger, and looked to see what kind of assistance they could render.

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At long last, Lake Region reigns

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copyright the Chronicle November 9, 2016

by Tena Starr and Brad Usatch

It’s been nearly 40 years since the Lake Region Union High School boys soccer team made it to a championship game. The last time was in 1978 when they lost to Milton. In the school’s 49 years of existence, the team has often been excellent — but never been a champion.

Until Saturday.

It was a big time payback at South Burlington High School Saturday afternoon when LR once again made it to the championship, and once again faced Milton.

This time, an undefeated Lake Region came home with the trophy and a decisive 4-0 win. Over the course of the season, they outscored their opponents 105-6.

The hard fought first half of Saturday’s game ended 1-0 with the goal by Matthew Lawlor, set up by Riley Urie, who scored three in the second half, pretty much assuring a Lake Region win well before the clock ran out.

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NEK End Addiction holds forum at Lake Region

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copyright the Chronicle September 28, 2016

by Elizabeth Trail

When Melissa Zebrowski’s brother and Jeannette Birch’s son died of drug overdoses in December and March, the two women’s reactions were to channel their grief into fighting the local heroin epidemic.

“We just felt a need to do something,” Ms. Birch said.

The two teamed up and told their family stories to Lake Region Union High School students in the spring.

They plan to continue their work in classrooms at Lake Region — and possibly at other high schools in the area — this fall.

One of the goals is to end the shame and silence surrounding addiction, they say.

Another is to get accurate information out to high school students — both information about the dangers of drugs, and resources for getting help in a crisis.

“I don’t want just to tell our story,” Ms. Zebrowski said. “We need to be telling a lot of stories.”

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LR Rocks singer showcase March 4

 

The Lake Region music department presents an antidote to the midwinter blues on Friday, March 4, when LR Rocks presents its annual singer showcase at Parker Pie in West Glover starting at 7:30 p.m.

The vocalists of the Power Rangers and Funk Out will perform a stylistically diverse show of solos, duets, and ensemble selections. Highlights include “Peace Train,” “Rockin’ Pneumonia and the Boogie Woogie Flu,” Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face,” “Four Chords,” Earth, Wind & Fire’s “September,” the Adele mash-up “Rumor Has It/Someone Like You,” “For Good” from the musical Wicked, and much more.

Back-up musicians are Josh Lavine (drum set), Jade Dennison (piano), Chris “Fingers” Doncaster (bass), and special guest on the keys, Dr. Pepper Sue.

This concert is a fund-raiser for the “Trills and Thrills” band festival in June. Suggested admission is a $5 donation per person. Ticket sales and reservations are in advance only, and begin one week prior to the show. Seating is limited!

Doors open at 7 p.m. on the night of the show.

Please contact Kathy McCoy at 754-2500, extension 0, or e-mail at [email protected]

For general questions about the show, please contact Sara Doncaster at 754-2500, extension 219, or 754-6335. — submitted by Sara Doncaster.

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Lake Region is state winner of Solve for Tomorrow Contest

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Lake Region Union High School is the state winner in the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Contest.  Teacher Connie MacFarlane won technology for the school with her idea for making a website to link businesses and organizations that have excess food with people who are in need.  Photo by Nathalie Gagnon-Joseph

Lake Region Union High School is the state winner in the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Contest. Teacher Connie MacFarlane won technology for the school with her idea for making a website to link businesses and organizations that have excess food with people who are in need. Photo by Nathalie Gagnon-Joseph

copyright the Chronicle December 16, 2015

by Nathalie Gagnon-Joseph

When teacher Connie MacFarlane received an e-mail with instructions to “answer a few questions for a chance to win technology for your school,” she did.

Now Lake Region Union High School (LRUHS) is the Vermont state winner of the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Contest.

“I answered the questions and submitted them then forgot about it,” she said. “Next thing I know, I find two tablets sent to me with a notification that I was a state finalist and I need to submit a proposal.”

The goal of the competition is for high schools around the country to come up with an idea to solve a problem in their communities using what they’ve learned in science, technology, engineering, and math.

Ms. MacFarlane teamed up with her colleague Betsy Calhoun to submit the proposal… To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Drilling underway on new well for Lake Region

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Drilling began on Friday for a new water well at Lake Region Union High School.  As of Tuesday morning, H.A. Manosh was still drilling.  A big pile of dirt shows that progress is being made.  Photo by Elizabeth Trail

Drilling began on Friday for a new water well at Lake Region Union High School. As of Tuesday morning, H.A. Manosh was still drilling. A big pile of dirt shows that progress is being made. Photo by Elizabeth Trail

copyright the Chronicle September 23, 2015

by Elizabeth Trail

Drilling began Friday on Lake Region Union High School’s new well.

About two weeks into the new school year, Lake Region maintenance personnel discovered that there was no water in the building.  The well refilled a little overnight, and the school limped carefully through the remainder of the week. But it soon became clear that the school was going to need a new well.

“I know just enough about this to be dangerous,” Principal Andre Messier said at the Lake Region school board meeting on Thursday night.

Normally, the school draws about 3,000 to 3,500 gallons of water a day, Mr. Messier said.  At the time that the well failed, the draw was about 6,000 gallons a day, and a leak was discovered… To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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