Chandler High School wins AIA Director’s Cup SanTan Sun News

Chandler High School wins AIA Director’s Cup

June 24th, 2018 | by SanTan Sun News
Chandler High School wins AIA Director’s Cup
Sports and Recreation
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By Brian Benesch, Sports Editor

 

Chandler High School won the Arizona Interscholastic Association Director’s Cup, which recognizes one area school for excellence in academics, athletics and activities.

It marked the first time in school history that the Wolves received this prestigious award, recognizing that Chandler students succeeded in the classroom during the past year. The school’s student-athletes recorded a 3.4 combined GPA.  

“We always emphasize the word ‘student’ in student-athletes and tell our kids that academics always come first. That is the number one priority,” said Chandler High Athletic Director Jim Culver.

“We have many student-athletes that take advanced placement classes and international baccalaureate classes, which gives them a great foundation in preparing beyond high school.”

On the field, Chandler High celebrated yet another title-filled season. The Wolves’ football team claimed its third state championship in four years with a thrilling 49-42 win over Perry High.

The school continued to dominate the track scene this spring, as well. The girls squad captured a state title for the third time in as many years, while the boys fell just short of accomplishing the same feat, finishing second to Desert Vista.

Chandler’s girls swim and dive team was the runner-up to Xavier Prep last winter.

The school’s baseball squad went 22-8, resulting in the Arizona Baseball Coaches Association naming Chandler’s David Lopez its Coach of the Year.

The AIA’s recognition was simply the latest honor bestowed on the school. But without a doubt, it is one of the most meaningful awards a program can receive.

Culver, the fifth-year athletic director, credits both the student-athletes and coaches for establishing Chandler’s winning culture over the years.

“I think we are fortunate to have an excellent coaching staff that not only cares about their student athletes, but also has a great ability to motivate them to always give their best effort,” Culver said.

One of those coaches is Shaun Aguano.

The football head man, who played a big role in his team’s championship run, said he believes success in the classroom translates onto the football field.

“First off, you have to take care of the kids. You have to create an environment where the kids are successful in the classroom and on the field,” the coach said. “You can only play football for so long, so we look for our kids to be successful after school.”

Chandler High’s dedication to learning on and off the field has stood out for many years. It was certainly a collective effort, with neither Aguano nor Culver ever taking credit for the school’s remarkable achievements.

“As a school and an athletic director, it would be considered one of the highest honors that we could accomplish,” Culver said.

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