State Experience


Sam Garner (12th), left, and Garrick Arias (12th), right

Angelo Salazar, Reporter

Woodland Park High School staff and students are so proud of our two senior students who went to the Pepsi Center in Denver to compete for a state title. Garrick Arias and Sam Garner are two outstanding athletes here at WPHS, and they told me about their experience in going to state. Sam Garner is a multi-sport athlete who excels in all his sports. He aspires to be in the Air Force, and serve our country. It was Garner’s first experience going to state. I asked Garner how he felt when he stepped into the Pepsi Center to compete for the biggest event since he has been at Woodland Park. He replied with, “It was very intimidating, because there are over seven-hundred other people and they are competing for what you want as well.” I also asked Garner how he felt when it was all over with. He said, “To make it to that level, you have to feel proud of yourself. I also felt like there were something I could have done better. But one thing for sure. That I am going to miss it.” Garner has proved himself to be a great student and athlete here at Woodland Park and as he moves forward with his life. I also spoke with Garrick Arias, who informed me about his amazing experience stepping inside the Pepsi Center to compete for what everyone is going after the highly desired state title. He is a great student here and hopefully has amazing plans after high school. I asked Arias if he had been to state before, and he said, “Yes, I went last year as a junior, and even then it was a great time being there.” I also asked Arias how he felt when he got there. He replied with, “It is super cool. It is just an amazing feeling that is just indescribable. You just have to be there to know what it feels like. ” I asked him about his reaction when it was all over with. He said, “I felt great. It is my senior year, and went to state, and I came out with a win. I had nothing to lose. I had fun, and I almost came out on top.” Arias is a great student and athlete and can say something that most people cannot: that he went to state. Now, these two seniors can say they had an amazing final year at WPHS.  Going to state to get a title is not something everyone can experience in their four years of high school, but these young men did. That is something that they will treasure for a very long time. These are the moments to cherish, and look back on. Sam Garner and Garrick Arias will be missed at Woodland Park High School. As they go on with their lives, they will always have that panther pride.