Seniors involved in football, cheerleading, color guard and Eagle Regiment say farewell at second football game of the season

Matthew Rosenthal, Assistant Editor-in-Chief

Senior Kacie Shatzkamer stands in between her parents while wearing his MSD Cheer uniform and senior sash. She is holding a bouquet of flowers. The photo was taken in front of the MSD Eagles football teams blow-up entrance.
Senior Kacie Shatzkamer, a member of MSD Cheer, is presented with her parents at Cumber Stadium on Senior Night. Photo by Kelsie Yon

An annual tradition at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Senior Night, is an event to say farewell to all the seniors in the Eagle Regiment marching band, football team, cheerleading squad and the color guard. Although in uncertain times, MSD still honored the Class of 2021 as the previous senior classes, with Senior Night on Nov. 3. 

Each of the activity sponsors and coaches worked together to plan the event, creating a list of senior students and who would accompany them onto the field for the ceremony. 

The event began with the annual introduction of the seniors, who were escorted onto the field by their family members. Some families made banners, which included their student’s accomplishments throughout high school.

The cheer squad had seven members who participated in their last cheer season. Some may decide to continue this year by joining the competitive cheer in the spring. 

“Ever since I was a freshman, I couldn’t wait to cheer at my Senior Night,” co-cheer captain Talia Kabowoski said. “It was such fun, and I was so happy that even with COVID-19, it was still able to happen.” 

The color guard had four members honored at the event, alongside 32 members of the Eagle Regiment band, which included receiving personalized gifts. 

“It felt a bit nostalgic in the way that I knew this was going to be one of my last times playing at a football game with my friends, but it felt nice to be with everyone despite corona being around,” Eagle Regiment battery captain Sophia Premble said. 

It is traditional for the underclass members of each section of the band, as well as the color guard, to contribute to the personalized gifts presented to the seniors. 

“I found Senior Night super sentimental, and I loved receiving all the gifts,” color guard member Olivia Blaker said. “I felt super appreciated like all the hard work was worth it.”

The event also honored Alex Schachter and Gina Montalto, who as freshmen were killed in the Feb. 14, 2018 shooting at MSD. Schachter was a band member, while Montalto was a color guard member. This event would have been their Senior Night, and the 2020 marching band season would have been their last. 

The football team has 24 members who participated in their last football season with MSD.

“The atmosphere wasn’t the same with the crowd restrictions, but I was happy for all of the seniors to be recognized from the band, cheerleading and football. It was a special moment for them and their families,” coach William Short said.

Touchdowns by senior running back Derek Geffard (1), wide receiver Christian Spencer (14), running back Chris Darius (5) and wide receiver Hervin Louis (3) put away the 28-3 win for the Eagles against Coral Glades.

This story was originally published in the December 2020 Eagle Eye print edition.