Hayden High School student-athletes Sarrah Perez and Manny Guillen were recently named the recipients of the annual Principal Awards, which celebrates outstanding achievement by dedicated students in the realms of academics, athletics and other contributions to the school.
A committee of school administrators chose the two deserving athletes. Recipients are chosen from grades 9-12. The criteria these student-athletes must meet to be recognized for the award include being high-achieving students who demonstrate leadership, promote commitment in academics and athletics, have a desire to succeed, and are great teammates.
“Being named the recipient of the principle award truly means a lot to me,” Perez told the Copper Basin News in a text. “It proved to me that hard work does pay off.
“I couldn’t be anymore thankful for being selected as the recipient and for the people who helped me along the way.”
Added Guillen: “Being (honored with) the award makes me realize how much I’ve achieved in high school and how fast everything happened.”
Perez, a junior, is a three-sport athlete – volleyball, basketball and softball – who plans to play basketball at the next level after her graduation in 2021 but acknowledged her plans are fluid as she is “keeping all my options open to whichever school will offer me the best opportunities toward my future career.”
Guillen, also a junior, is a three-sport athlete as well – football, basketball, and baseball – who plans to attend Northern Arizona University to study electrical engineering after he graduates in 2021. He said participating in athletics has helped prepare him with the knowledge of how to stay active in life after high school.
Perez also learned future benefits from participating in athletics at Hayden.
“Athletics have taught many qualities that life revolves around,” she said. “Athletics have taught me what it feels like to win or lose, integrity, respect, how to be disciplined, to work hard for what I want, and most important that hard work does pay off.”
Hayden athletic director Lydia Martinez takes great pride in seeing Hayden student-athletes achieve their goals; it is her job, she says, to help provide them with opportunities.
“My advice to Sarrah and Manny for their senior year is to continue being great role models to the youth, keep pursing higher academic goals, and be the best teammates they can be.”