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Aquinas Catholic High School graduated one of its biggest classes in recent memory when 53 students received their diplomas last weekend.

Despite having a large class, everyone seemed to indicate that this class was close to one another.

According to Teresa Pokorny, who is the senior class moderator, the class had an ACT average over 25.

"They're very creative, intelligent," Pokorny said. "They're a close-knit group and they're competitive and very supportive of each other. They've left a great example, not just on the hard courts, but in fine arts, music and clubs. We're very proud of the example they have set and the growth that they've shown during their time here at Aquinas."

One of the seniors who was involved in the fine arts was Katie Brezina. She won the Cardinal Newman Award and plans on going to Wayne State College to major in elementary education.

"I think the first emotion is excitement because you're moving on to a new stage in your life, but at the same time it's kind of sad," Brezina said. "It's a little bittersweet because you're leaving all the people that you've grown close to over the years."

She was involved in band, choir, drama, speech and was the president of a couple of clubs.

"I think through all the ups and downs we've grown closer," Brezinia said. "It's kind of like a family now. We've spent so much time with each other over the years. We spend more time with these people then we do with our own families. I think just kind of indicates how close we are."

Miles Eggleston, who played football, wrestled and ran track echoed many of the thought of Brezinia.

"I'm definitely pretty emotional," he said. "You grow up with the same 50 kids your whole life and you're about to go your separate ways. It's equally rewarding and sad at the same time to see some of your best friends that you know you won't be quite the same with anymore, but awesome to know that you accomplished this together."

Eggleston went on to explain he thinks this class of Monarchs was able to stay so close.

"Over the years, watching a lot of other classes grow up there has been a lot of drama," he said. "Our class never really had any of those problems. I think we always got along really well and I think we've always kind of been like a small family.

"We have a lot of nice kids from good families, good upbringings. I think a lot of us are involved in a lot of things and being involved in sports and outside academics, just being in things together helps you stay friends and helps you develop relationships that last longer and are more positive."

Eggleston plans on attending the University of Nebraska - Lincoln to study agriculture education.

Before the ceremony began, fellow senior Jacqueline Drozda described the feeling as surreal.

"It feels pretty crazy," she said. "It feels like we've been going this way for so long and now we're finally there. We're just very tight-knit and we just all get along. We've never been in a fight. We're really tight nit and we're all friends so it's really nice."

Drozda plans on continuing her education at Central Community College-Columbus and plans on majoring in elementary education and vocal music.

Peter Huguenin is a sports reporter for The Banner-Press. Reach him via email at peter.huguenin@lee.net 

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