Press "Enter" to skip to content

A fall full of achievements

By Connie Baer and Lynn Baer

As first semester ends, we pause to reflect on some of the amazing accomplishments of Foothiller students and staff achieved over the past four months.


Boys cross country: Grossmont’s Jonathon Rodriguez-Gomez finished 20th at the California state finals, running the second-fastest 5K time in school history. He ran 15:42, second in the school record book behind Dave McQuitty, who ran 15:31 in 1995. Rodriguez-Gomez is one of only six Foothillers to ever compete at the California State Cross Country Finals more than once.

Boys water polo: Congratulations to 2018 Hills League Water Polo Champions with their league record of nine wins and one loss. After competing in the CIF Open Division, they competed in the Southern California Championships, first defeating Santa Monica High School and then losing the semifinal match to La Jolla High School by a score of 10-9.

Reflecting on the season, coach Clint McLaughlin said, “What really made this team special was how they bonded and worked so hard over the years to achieve this success. They were incredibly resilient. Many times we had our backs against the wall, and they would just push even harder and battle. This team represented Grossmont High School well, in and out of the pool.”

Girls golf: Freshman Carissa Freeman is our first lady golfer in 15 years to make interleague finals between the Valley and Hill Leagues. Freeman also qualified for CIF Finals.

Football: The varsity football team received multiple All Hills League honors:

  • First Team All-League: linebacker James Bond and linebacker Alex Golojuch
  • Second Team All-League: wide receiver/running back Desmond Carter, quarterback Jaime Odom, linebacker Chris Alba and wide receiver Skip Waltower
  • Honorable mention: defensive back Connor Sanchez, returner Thomas Mangum, wide receiver/punter Zak Farris, and wide receiver Brody Schicker.

Congratulations to teacher Jeremy Hersch

On Sept. 15, five local educators were named 2018-19 San Diego County Teachers of the Year during the 28th annual “Cox Presents: A Salute to Teachers,” sponsored by San Diego County Credit Union in partnership with the San Diego County Office of Education. From a field of 41 teachers, 10 finalists were selected.

Grossmont High School teacher Jeremy Hersch was one of those 10. Reflecting on the experience, Hersch said, “Representing Grossmont and the GUHSD as Teacher of the Year was a huge honor. I feel blessed to work with amazing students and staff every day!”


In September, Grossmont was one of three high schools in San Diego County to host members of the Blue Angels. Team members spoke in an assembly about how they use humility to become great at what they do. It was a thoughtful, motivating lesson.

In November, 33 hard working cadets were hosted by the USS Carl Vinson, CVN-70. Cadets received a tour of the ship and had a brief appearance with the ship’s commanding officer. It made more than a few cadets very interested in naval aviation.

The NJROTC Marksmanship Team finished in the top three in five out of six matches, with Cadet Jocelyn Brown-Hill, Cadet Calista Zaenger, and Cadet Summer Oraha each placing in the top three.

2018 Nickel and Dimmed Cast
The cast of “Nickel and Dimed” (Photos courtesy GHS Museum)

Performing arts

Theater arts: The cast and crew of “Nickel and Dimed,” the GHS Foothiller Players’ fall show, had a very successful run over a two-week period. They are preparing for their spring production of “Mamma Mia” on March 13-16 and 20-23 at 7 p.m.

Instrumental music: The Royal Blue Regiment qualified for championships for the first time in several years. The growing young band (only four musicians are seniors) demonstrated uncanny musical and marching maturity and skill.

Grossmont orchestra: The Grossmont Strings have grown in size to almost 40 students, under the direction of Dr. Karen Evans, artistic director for orchestra at Grossmont High School. The three groups, the Footnotes (the advanced string quintet), the Celli Angels (cello section), and Take 2 (intermediate strings) have performed throughout the county.

Art department

On Dec. 12, GHS Visual Arts presented the grand opening of Gallery 97, with their Fall Student Art Show, a celebration of the some of this semester’s best student artwork. Gallery 97 was conceptualized in Grossmont’s 97th year as a space to showcase student artwork and was made possible through a grant from the GHS Educational Foundation, which funded the display furniture. To be updated with the GHS art department, please follow them using #foothillerarts.

Inspirational student

Inspirational Student Israel Davis

NBC 7’s Inspirational Student of November was Transition Student Israel Davis, who volunteers an hour a day as a greeter in the Grossmont UHS District Office. The news feature stresses that Israel “radiates happiness and warmth.” Transition teacher Sherrie Dixon, reaffirmed that Israel “strives to brighten everyone’s day.”

View the segment at

—Connie and Lynn Baer write on behalf of the GHS Museum. For more information about the wonderful things happening at Grossmont, please visit the Museum noon–3:30 on Jan. 9 or by appointment on other Wednesdays. To explore 98 years of Foothiller history, visit Contact: or 619-668-6140.

Source: La Mesa Currier

Be First to Comment


    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

    Call Us