January 10, 2007

Concerned parent Janice Morrow questions the board about how the district lines were redrawn at Monday's meeting. (Staff photo by Carol Brimm)
Concerned parent Janice Morrow questions the board about how the district lines were redrawn at Monday's meeting. (Staff photo by Carol Brimm)


Redistricting plan approved
School board faces concern, tries to ease fear about changes

Carol Brimm

Mustang School Board approved a plan to redraw elementary district lines Monday night after a lengthy discussion with concerned parents. Due to the opening of the new elementary on Czech Hall Road this fall, students will now be divided among six elementary schools. Mustang Elementary will have approximately 557 students, Trails 692, Creek 711, Valley 507, Lakehoma 688 and the new elementary (yet to be named) will have 437 students. Mustang Superintendent Karl Springer said 300 students would be able to walk to the new elementary school.

Parents addressed the board raising questions regarding who participated in the study to determine how the new lines would be drawn, how the number of students at each school was determined when next year’s first graders are not yet enrolled, and public perception that the lines were drawn based on socioeconomic issues rather than geographic ones, variance in test scores between schools and traffic concerns near Mustang Elementary.

Parent Janice Morrow told the board that parents of children at Valley Elementary were concerned about moving their children from a school with the highest test scores to Mustang Elementary, a school with the lowest test scores. She said a dip in the map to keep the Bitter Creek subdivision in Valley’s district when those around that area are being moved to Mustang Elementary “doesn’t look good”.

“Perception is something you need to deal with,” Morrow said. “We have not received the information we need and will have no opportunity to respond unless the board decides not to vote on this tonight.”

Catherine Callahan, parent of a Mustang Elementary student who will attend Valley under the new plan, responded to the concerns of Valley parents saying they should have faith in Mustang Elementary.

“Your kids will be in good hands at Mustang Elementary,” Callahan said. “Remember the best way to predict your children’s future is to create it. Get involved. Don’t bring your pre-conceived prejudices with you. I believe my family will lose out because we will be going to Valley.”

Springer assured parents that there is only a 2 percent variance in test scores between all elementary schools and assured them in an impassioned speech that their children would receive a quality education in Mustang no matter what school they attend.

“Last year Mustang Elementary had the highest reading scores in the district,” Springer said. “To teach in Mustang you have to be a quality teacher. We have people who care about kids. It is not dependant on where you go to school. You can go to any one of our elementary schools and the parents are pleased with the education their kids are getting.”

Jim Burkey, Director of Construction and Bonds, told parents and the board that a committee of administrators and parents considered the number of MAPS students at each site, geographic boundaries, the number of students each site could handle, future construction on existing sites, future student population, all day kindergarten and the need to prevent students from passing one school to get to another.

“We need to have MAPS students at each site,” Burkey said, “and the rate of growth near Mustang Valley and on SH 92 and the concentration of kids in the Heights were our biggest problems. We tried to use section line roads and natural barriers. We didn’t want to split additions with kids across the street from each other going to different schools.”

According to Burkey the committee was comprised of administrators: Maxine Morris, Belinda Rogers, Dianna Calvert, Pam McLaughlin, Laquita Semmler, Neal Womack, David Steiner, Sondra Bivens, and Megan Wilson. Parents volunteers were: Angela Rodgers, Cathy Jo See, Christi Vela, Christina Culver, Crystal Jopling, Deborah Petty, Kari Kelly, Katherine Callahan, Kendal Young, Kim Weber, Lupe Sheppard, Scott Copelin, Shannon Yerby, Sherry Jones and Sondra George, according to Burkey.

Burkey said the committee used Oklahoma City demographic information and learned where most of the new additions will be going up to determine the number of future students in each district.

“With the amount of construction going on within a mile of Valley,” Springer said, “We will have 800 kids there soon if we don’t do anything about it.”

Burkey said the Bitter Creek addition was left in Valley’s district at the request of the transportation director. Other transportation considerations were made regarding students living in a small section east of Wal-Mart and students living in the Fieldstone apartments.

Gina Nelson, parent of a Mustang Valley student that will be moving to Mustang Elementary, said her concerns were adequately addressed and she appreciated the open and honest discussion regarding the issue.

“We didn’t get the information early enough,” Nelson said. “Notice of the PTA meeting was only given the day before and the study had already been performed and the lines drawn before that meeting. We didn’t know who participated in the study and that’s critical information. Our fears that the lines were drawn on socioeconomic lines instead of geographic lines could have been alleviated if we had known this information ahead of time.”

Nelson said her comfort level was helped by the school board’s open response to questions and discussion regarding this issue. Jeff Lucero, parent of a first grader being moved from Creek to Valley, said he also feels a little better after the school board meeting but still has some issues to work through.

Burkey told the board the redistricting is only a temporary fix and the board will need to look at another elementary school in the eastern part of the district at some time in the future.
College courses to be available at Town Center
Education Fair to showcase new opportunity

Stacy Barnes

Mustang residents will be able to take college courses without leaving town thanks to arrangements made through the Chamber of Commerce and Mid America Christian University. The school will offer two courses at Mustang Town Center, Management and Management Information Systems.

“Those are two of the most demanded degrees in business,” said Chamber of Commerce Director Becky Julian. “We are increasing the workforce by providing education in Mustang.”
Julian said she wanted to put an emphasis on education and the city because it is a way for people here to increase their quality of life.

“Town Center is a standing testament to the quality of life in Mustang,” she said. “Because we have this fine facility and wifi access, we can offer this as a convenience to the citizens of Mustang. It’s really about increasing the quality of life for families.”

“This is the first time you’ll be able to get a bachelor’s degree in Mustang. It’s exciting.”

The Chamber will host an Education Fair for adult and high school students at Town Center in the Banquet Room on Thurs., Jan. 11, 2007 from 5 p.m.-8 p.m.

The Fair will focus on higher education and technology education in Canadian County in Mustang at Mid-America Christian University and in El Reno at Redlands Community College, and Canadian Valley Technology. Representatives will promote their spring and summer programs they have available. McDonald's and Mid-America Christian University will co-sponsor the event.

“We want everyone interested in completing their degree to bring their unofficial transcripts for assessment,“ said Paul Crone, University Liaison ”This spring we’ll launch bachelor degrees both in Management and Management Information Systems, one night a week at the Town Center.”

With workplace training and experience counting as college credit with Mid-America, counselors will be available at the fair to assess transcripts and advise prospective students on transferring to the university. Also, high school graduates in southern Canadian County now are in close proximity to a four-year university.

Crone said the new local program is convenient for community dwellers and will save people money on gas as well as living expenses.

The fair will also feature computers for online registration of student financial aid and seminars that will interest families and singles, alike: “Successful Interviewing”, “Buying a PC for Your Kids,” and “Technology Careers for 2010.”
Put away the cats & chickens, Ma!
New ordinance could silence sounds of rural life

Brendan Hoover

Following the lead of other Oklahoma City metro communities, Mustang could soon see a new city ordinance that would attempt to put a lid on nuisance noise from animals on residential property.

The city already has an ordinance on the books dealing with nuisance dog barking, but no way to handle noise from other animals, which create disturbances.

Civil lawsuits are the citizens’ only recourse.

The Mustang City Council discussed the proposed ordinance, which would amend the noise portion of the municipal code, at their regular meeting Jan. 2 at City Hall.

The ordinance would allow citizens to file a criminal complaint with the police department or animal control if they think they have been imposed on by nuisance animal noise.

“The court, based upon testimony, would then decide if that’s a violation of the law,” City Manager David Cockrell said.

Councilwoman Kathleen Moon said noise complaints are very subjective.

City Planner Melissa Helsel said that the current noise ordinance in general states that noise should not annoy people of ordinary sensibilities.

“Which sounds vague, but (the new ordinance) leaves it up to the person who is the complainant to justify that there was a reason for the complaint,” Helsel said.

Although no hard evidence of a need for the new provision was presented during discussion, the council seemed to agree that some measure should be taken so the city could deal with problems with non-dog noise should they arise.

Cockrell said he was not aware of noise complaints other than dogs.

“If there were, I might not know because police and animal control are telling people it’s a civil issue,” he said.

Mayor Jeff Landrith said the noise complaint calls he generally gets concern cats, dogs, chickens, cars and parties, and that three of those are already covered by law.

“It’s the cats and chickens that I think we are looking at a way to assist with,” Landrith said.

Landrith said the calls he has received were from the Heights and Meadows additions.

Animals mentioned during discussion were: cats, chickens, cows, donkeys, goats and horses.

While chuckles and one-liners were sprinkled among the discussion, some points were brought up about possible complications with the new ordinance.

Councilman Keith Bryan said livestock and other lawful animals on agricultural land should be exempt from the new law.

“Mustang has been an agricultural town forever. It’s hard to tell a farmer his cow is too loud when (she) lost her calf or something. We need to look into exemptions for agriculture,” Bryan said.

Councilman Len Scott and Moon warned against allowing the new ordinance to be used as a weapon by feuding neighbors.

“I don’t want to put something on the books that will give neighbors an opportunity to harass each other and use City Hall as a tool,” Moon said.

Moon also cringed when the matter of decibel levels in the new ordinance was brought up.

“That’s a nuisance in itself,” she said.

Cockrell said he would look into how many non-dog complaints have been received by animal control, and that a pragmatic approach would be best.

“As with ordinances of this type, a lot of it deals with just good common sense in the enforcement,” he said.

In other business, Harry Varenhorst was appointed to the city’s board of adjustments.
Pryor dubbed president-elect of Realtors Association

Carol Brimm

Marolyn Pryor, owner of Marolyn Pryor Realtors, which has five offices in the metro area, was recently selected to serve as the 2007 president-elect of the Oklahoma Metro Association of Realtors. This will be Pryor’s second term. She served her first term as president in 1988.

Pryor says her goal is to create a more member-friendly board, making members feel welcome to use the facilities of the board at any time. She also wants to see new leadership in the board.

“Our old timers are taking a second turn at serving on the board,” Pryor said. “We need younger people coming on. I’ve put in a lot of years and I love it but we need more young people involved.”

Pryor says membership in the association helped her understand what a realtor is.

“You may be licensed, but you are not a Realtor until you join the association,” Pryor said.

She said the association helps members grow professionally and is a great way to network.

“We have monthly meetings and luncheons and it helps to meet other members you can network with which leads to cross sales,” Pryor said. “We support candidates and legislation that affect the real estate industry and have or will have committees of Professional Standards, Ethics, Arbitration, Legislative, Education, Finance, and Affiliates. We also offer scholarships to OAR training to encourage younger people to get involved and become new leaders.”

According to Pryor, 90 percent of the association’s focus was international under prior president and chief executive officer Sharon Young. The Daily Oklahoman reported Young spent much of the association’s resources organizing an annual International Business Conference which drew presenters from all over the world but few metro realtors.

“We are all aware of the global economy,” Pryor said, “but we need to take care of local issues. This should be a member driven association to help and benefit our members.”

Pryor says she did not seek the office of president-elect, but is very honored she was asked to take it.
Development Director dies

Stacy Barnes

Mustang lost a valued city employee last week when Community Development Director Jim Turner passed away. Turner, 62, had served as the head of Community Development for more than 10 years and oversaw inspections, business licensing, and planning/zoning for the city, tasks which required Turner and his staff to determine how the community could best grow.

Area leaders were saddened at the news of Turner’s passing.

“He was excellent and will be sorely missed both as a friend and a co-worker,” said City Manager David Cockrell. “He was a tremendous man who worked with so many boards and commissions and was actively involved in the city. He was a great department head.”

Mayor Jeff Landrith echoed the sentiment saying, “Jim was a very well respected man. His heart was in the right place and you couldn’t help but like the guy. When I think of him I think respect, respect, respect.”

Services for Turner were held Sat., Jan. 6 at McNeil’s Mustang Funeral Service.
Post office to offer special cancellation

Stacy Barnes

The Mustang Post Office will offer a special cancellation beginning Thurs., Jan. 11 at 10 a.m.

The cancellation pays tribute to the state's centennial. Collectors are expected to take advantage of Thursday's cancellation. Mustang Postmaster Cindy Thrift said there are several collectors in the area.

Each of Oklahoma's 567 post offices have their own unique stamp and will have two special commemorative envelopes, or caches, available as well.

Thrift said many collectors will put the special Oklahoma stamp on the cache and then have the cancellation put on.

"People must come in and bring an envelope with first class postage or must purchase first class postage, and they must ask for the special cancellation," Thrift said. "It's a big rubber stamp and you just capture the left side, just enough to cancel the stamp."

The special cancellation will be available throughout the year. The commemorative stamps and envelopes are only available while supplies last. Thrift said she only received 40 of each of the envelopes.
Young rider sets sights on professional racing

Brendan Hoover

When Austin Medrano found out that a huge pile of dirt was to be moved from a parcel of land behind Tator’s Cafe in Mustang, his face lit up as if he had just heard about gold deposits in California.

“What are they going to do with it?” he asked his father.

“I told them to send it over to our place,” Will Medrano replied.

Young Austin brushed his long brown hair from his face and seemed pleased. The dirt would help soften up the motorcycle track they had built on their land outside town.

“That hard red clay is bumpy to ride on,” his father said.

Austin, a sixth grader at Mustang Middle School, has been riding for four years now. He started off riding small dirt bikes and first raced in Enid in 2002.

On Saturday the 12-year-old won his third race in a row this season in the amateur 85cc class at the AMP Winter Nationals in Harrah. Austin is atop the point standings for the series with 60 points and is the defending champion in that class, where children near his age compete.

But even more impressive may be that he also leads the standings in the amateur 250cc open class this year in the same league, where he competes with many racers twice his age.

Austin came in second in the 250cc race at Harrah on Saturday, just behind defending champ Justin Elswick.

“He was holding me back,” Austin explained about the finish. “I tried to take the inside line on him but he would not give it up. He was too wide.”

Since he began racing competitively in 2003, Austin has racked up a slew of victories. A sampling of his accomplishments include: the 2004 Ada Sports Park 85 cc Championship; the 2005 Five State 85cc Gold Cup Championship; the 2005 Budweiser Outlaw Winter National 85cc Championship; and the 2005-06 North Forty Summer/Spring 125/250 Championship.

Austin’s goals include becoming the American Motorcycle Association Amateur National Overall Champion within three years, and to become a pro rider with five years.

“I like the feel of the bike, the pressure of the competition, and the speed of the race,” Austin said.

Will Medrano said he is proud of his son, but admitted he gets worried sometimes about a crash.

“So far we’ve only been racing flat tracks. The motocross can be too risky. Still, I’ve seen kids get shucked right off the front and get run over by their own bike,” he said.

Saundra Medrano, Austin’s mother and a nursing professor at OSU, was slow to warm up to the idea of competitive racing, but supports her son, his father said.

While upcoming events for Austin do include tracks with some jumps, the young champion seems to know no fear. In his first 250cc race in October, he finished third of twelve and flew down the track at 86 miles-per-hour.

Austin credits family friend and pro rider Bret Sowders of Bethany for helping him rise to the level he has.

Austin and his father have sent out portfolios in hopes of earning a sponsorship, but so far have received none. Will Medrano said Adams Tuning in Bethany and Wedman’s Motor Sports in Oklahoma City have helped them keep their motorcycles in top shape.

Austin maintains a B-average in school while keeping his busy racing schedule. His other hobbies include video games, skateboarding and soccer.

When that dirt that Austin was so pleased to learn about arrives to the Medrano property, he may find a willing challenger to his dominance: his five-year-old sister Katie.

“She rides, but she doesn’t like getting dirty,” Austin said.
Happenings @ Town Center

Desiree Webber, Justin Battles & Gloria Shotwell

Join the fun. Register now for the Free-Throw Challenge to be held Jan. 15, 2007. This event is open to boys and girls ages 6 to 13. For more information contact Dennis Qualls at 376-7755 or dqualls@cityofmustang.org for more details.

There will be a 3-on-3 Hoops Tournament on January 20. This has been changed from the previously advertised date of Jan. 13. Entry fee is $40 per team and the deadline to register is Thurs., Jan. 18. Cash prizes will be awarded to division winners and there will be four divisions of play.

Check out the health facilities at Town Center. Members have access to the walking and jogging track, cardio/weight room plus a variety of classes throughout the day and evening hours. Cardio Sculpt and Boot Camp classes start the day at 5:15 a.m. Other classes include yoga, aerobics and kickboxing. Shower facilities are available for those who want to work out before work. Free onsite babysitting is available during designated hours. Call the Recreation Center at 376-3411 to check on membership rates and babysitting room hours.

Every Sunday from 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. is Community Day at the Recreation Center. No membership is required and entrance is free. Come in and enjoy the game room, gymnasium and walking track.

Registration for spring softball leagues has begun. Softball will start early March. For more information about Parks and Recreation services and programs, please call 376-3411.

A Health Fair will be held at the Mustang Senior Center on Wednesday, January 24, from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. in the Banquet Halls A & B of the Mustang Town Center. Some of booths will include Loving Care In-Home Health Services, which will provide blood pressure check, blood sugar screening and cholesterol screening. It is suggested that you fast for the cholesterol screening, which has a $5.00 charge. A representative from the Oklahoma Library for the Blind and Physically Disabled will demonstrate books and magazines available on tape. Debbie’s Personal Fitness will discuss Swedish massage and corporate massage. There will also be a blood drive and free foot care clinic. Appointments are required for the foot clinic and blood drive. A list of all participating vendors may be picked up at the Mustang Senior Center, Parks & Recreation Center, and the Library. For more information or to make an appointment, please call the Senior Center at 376-1297.

The Mustang Senior Center has scheduled a trip to the Yukon Stage Door to see the play “A Taste of Broadway - Hello Jerry” on Saturday evening, January 27th. Please call the Center at 376-1297 to make a reservation. Participants will eat a dinner at the Interurban Restaurant. The cost is $6.00 for the play dinner.

The Mustang Senior Center serves lunch Monday thru Friday at 11:30 a.m. Lunch reservations need to be made by 12:30 p.m. the day before. There is a suggested donation of $1.50 for 60 years of age and over, $3.00 for those less than 60 years of age.

State and Federal tax forms are now available at the Mustang Public Library. General forms such as the 1040, 1040-A, 1040-EZ are available at no charge while supplies last. Special forms may be photocopied at ten cents per sheet. The library is open Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Tuesdays 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., Fridays 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturdays 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

An e-mail class for beginners will be offered on Tuesday, January 16, at 10:00 a.m. or 7:00 p.m. Each class will be ninety minutes long and is designed for those who have no or little experience using an e-mail account. Participants must pre-register by Friday, January 12. Instructor will open an e-mail account for you prior to the class session. An intermediate e-mail class will be held January 30, at 10:00 a.m. or 7:00 p.m. Participants must pre-register.

The Friends of the Mustang Public Library would like to thank the following businesses who supported the annual Cowboy Christmas Ball fundraiser: All Season Building Supply, Beth Allen (Marolyn Pryor Realtor), Bronco Stop, Cossey’s Custom Cut Meats, DJ Ranch, Hair Razzors, MidFirst Bank, Mustang Flowers and Gifts, Mustang Rotary Club, Noreta’s Catering, and Westlake Hardware. Funds will be used to support educational programming at the library. Educational programs encourage reading and use of the library. The next Friends of the Library event is the Chocolate Festival on Monday, February 12, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Businesses and civic organizations interested is hosting a table must register by Friday, January 12. Contact festival chair Noreta Voyles-Grady at 745-3677.

The newly established Teen Advisory Committee will meet Tuesday, January 23. Young people ages 12 to 17 will discuss what programs, services and materials that the library can provide for teens. Pizza and soft drinks will be served. Teens interested in serving on the committee should come by the library and complete an application. For more information contact Patty Young at pyoung@cityofmustang.org or call 376-2226.

The Oklahoma Watercolor Association Traveling Art Show will exhibit award winners during the month of January at the Mustang Public Library. Some of the pieces on exhibit include “The Governor’s Veranda” by Lynden Wilcoxson, “Foul Ball” by Terrell Roos, and “Winter Tapestry” by Ramona White. The exhibit is co-sponsored by the Mustang Library Board of Trustees and the Mustang Chamber of Commerce. A sketch session with a live model will be held in the library on Thursday, January 11, from 10:00 a.m. to noon. Lyndon Wilcoxson will lead the sketch session, which is open to the public. For more information about library programs and services, please call 376-2226.

To view the Community Calendar for a listing of programs and events, check the website at www.cityofmustang.org or tune into channel 20.
Sports
Taylor brings home title from nation's oldest tournament

Brendan Hoover

Mustang junior Tim Taylor claimed his second wrestling championship of the season by winning the 160-pound division in the 63rd Geary Tournament over the weekend.

The Geary Tournament is the oldest wrestling tournament in the country, with the best teams from Oklahoma competing for the prestigious yet small Geary medals.

Taylor won five straight matches, scoring three falls and two decisions, as he worked his way through the bracket. He defeated Josh Sublett of Norman North in the finals Saturday, 5-1, scoring two takedowns and one escape in the match.

“The competition was pretty decent,” Taylor said. “I was really proud and happy and I picked up a lot of confidence.”

Taylor is now an undefeated 11-0 on the season and ranked second in the state at 160 behind Sapulpa’s Kyle Blevins.

Head coach Dave Rankin he was proud of Taylor’s performance.

“I’m just really excited about how well he’s working in the room this year. He’s making tremendous strides to go from being a good wrestler to a great wrestler,” Rankin said.

“He took home a prestigious award by winning this tournament. All the toughest schools were there,” he said.

Mustang earned tenth place in the tournament, scoring 56 total points.

Tulsa Union took home the team title with 109.5 total points, winning two championships and two second place finishes.

Junior Auston Slater slimmed down to wrestle at 145 in the tournament, taking second place in that division. He lost to two-time state champion Seth Vernon of Tulsa Union in the finals, 5-2, after coming through the consolation bracket.

Slater defeated Bobby Williams of Tuttle 8-0 in the consolation bracket to make the finals, and scored two falls over the weekend to add to Mustang’s team total.

“I was really impressed with Auston getting down to 145. He has been wrestling at 152,” Rankin said. “His conditioning was excellent and he’s an exciting wrestler who’s lightning fast.”

Senior Chayse Garrison earned a sixth place finish in the tournament, winning three matches all by decision. He lost to Billy Deal of Norman North in the fifth place match.

“Chayse is one of the hardest workers in the room, but the best thing about him is his attitude. He works his heart out all the time,” Rankin said.

Overall Rankin said his team performed well against the state’s elite.

“We won a lot of matches and we had a couple of kids just out of the medal race. Our conditioning was good, our competitive thinking was good, so I’m proud of our team right now,” Rankin said.

The Broncos do not have time to rest on their laurels. They wrestled a tough district foe in Moore after press time Tuesday, and travel to face rival Yukon in a conference dual on Thursday.

This weekend the Broncos will compete in the Sand Springs tournament.

Rankin said that senior Jake Edmonds should be ready to go for Sand Springs after he had aggravated a head injury earlier in the season that he suffered in a pick-up football game last spring.
Sports
Taylor brings home title from nation's oldest tournament

Brendan Hoover

Mustang junior Tim Taylor claimed his second wrestling championship of the season by winning the 160-pound division in the 63rd Geary Tournament over the weekend.

The Geary Tournament is the oldest wrestling tournament in the country, with the best teams from Oklahoma competing for the prestigious yet small Geary medals.

Taylor won five straight matches, scoring three falls and two decisions, as he worked his way through the bracket. He defeated Josh Sublett of Norman North in the finals Saturday, 5-1, scoring two takedowns and one escape in the match.

“The competition was pretty decent,” Taylor said. “I was really proud and happy and I picked up a lot of confidence.”

Taylor is now an undefeated 11-0 on the season and ranked second in the state at 160 behind Sapulpa’s Kyle Blevins.

Head coach Dave Rankin he was proud of Taylor’s performance.

“I’m just really excited about how well he’s working in the room this year. He’s making tremendous strides to go from being a good wrestler to a great wrestler,” Rankin said.

“He took home a prestigious award by winning this tournament. All the toughest schools were there,” he said.

Mustang earned tenth place in the tournament, scoring 56 total points.

Tulsa Union took home the team title with 109.5 total points, winning two championships and two second place finishes.

Junior Auston Slater slimmed down to wrestle at 145 in the tournament, taking second place in that division. He lost to two-time state champion Seth Vernon of Tulsa Union in the finals, 5-2, after coming through the consolation bracket.

Slater defeated Bobby Williams of Tuttle 8-0 in the consolation bracket to make the finals, and scored two falls over the weekend to add to Mustang’s team total.

“I was really impressed with Auston getting down to 145. He has been wrestling at 152,” Rankin said. “His conditioning was excellent and he’s an exciting wrestler who’s lightning fast.”

Senior Chayse Garrison earned a sixth place finish in the tournament, winning three matches all by decision. He lost to Billy Deal of Norman North in the fifth place match.

“Chayse is one of the hardest workers in the room, but the best thing about him is his attitude. He works his heart out all the time,” Rankin said.

Overall Rankin said his team performed well against the state’s elite.

“We won a lot of matches and we had a couple of kids just out of the medal race. Our conditioning was good, our competitive thinking was good, so I’m proud of our team right now,” Rankin said.

The Broncos do not have time to rest on their laurels. They wrestled a tough district foe in Moore after press time Tuesday, and travel to face rival Yukon in a conference dual on Thursday.

This weekend the Broncos will compete in the Sand Springs tournament.

Rankin said that senior Jake Edmonds should be ready to go for Sand Springs after he had aggravated a head injury earlier in the season that he suffered in a pick-up football game last spring.
Sports
Mustang native nominated for NBA All-Star Dance Team

Brendan Hoover

If the roster of the Honeybees were a true demographic representation, Mustang could claim a full fifteen percent of the population of beautiful women in the Oklahoma City metro area.

Three of the 20 members of the dance team for the Oklahoma City/New Orleans Hornets, Leah Parker, Nicole Calvert and Tina Lenhart, hail from the home of the Broncos.

Parker, a 2004 Mustang High School graduate, has been nominated for a spot on the NBA All-Star Dance Team that will perform at the All-Star game in March.

Parker performed for the MHS Pom squad for three years and was named to the All-State Dance team her senior year. After graduation she performed with the University of Central Oklahoma Pom Squad before trying out for the Honeybees when the Hornets relocated to Oklahoma City after Hurricane Katrina.

Parker beat out nearly 200 other women to win one of ten spots on the team in her first season, and is now performing in her second season after tryouts last summer.

Parker and two other women were nominated to represent the Honeybees on the All-Star Dance Team. The competition will be decided by fan voting. Supporters can cast their vote for Parker by logging on to www.hornets.com and looking for the “Vote for Your Honeybees” picture.

Fans can vote once per day and voting will take place until Jan. 22. The Honeybee with the most votes wins the spot on the team.

Parker’s mom, Pam, said the nomination is quite an honor for her daughter, and her family and friends are very proud of her accomplishments.

Parker said she has been dancing since she was six years old, taking jazz and ballet classes in Mustang. She said is proud to represent her hometown.

“It’s really neat. People come up to me and ask if I’m from Mustang. It’s neat to come from a small town and represent the high school and let people that we have a good dance team,” she said.

Parker said she would be surprised if she won the spot on the All-Star Dance team.

“It’s a tough competition. It would be awesome to represent the Hornets in Las Vegas. I would be so proud to know people thought I deserved it, but the other two girls deserve it just as much as I do,” she said.

Calvert, a 2005 MHS graduate and first year Honeybee, said she is proud her fellow Bronco has been nominated for the honor.

“I’m really excited that Leah has the opportunity to go to Vegas and I wish her luck. I’m rooting for all the girls. They’re all Honeybees,” she said.

Calvert, biology major at UCO who wants to be a dental hygienist, won her spot on the squad after tryouts last summer.

“I was on the (Oklahoma City) Yard Dawgs dance team last year. Then some girls found out they were having Honeybee tryouts and four of us went for it,” she said. “I love being a Honeybee—it’s amazing to be a dancer for an NBA team. And since they are leaving next year, I might not ever have this opportunity again.”
Sports
Ladies go to 9-0; Broncos fall short in second half rally

Brendan Hoover

The Lady Broncos improved to an undefeated 9-0 on Friday night, defeating the Edmond North Lady Huskies 60-37 at the Mustang High School gym.

The Broncos made their second impressive comeback in a row after the girls game, but could not overcome lights out Edmond North free throw shooting in the fourth quarter, falling 65-53.

The Lady Broncos began the first varsity game of the night by finding themselves in first quarter deficit. Two Edmond North free throws at 6:13 extended the Lady Huskie lead to 6-1.

Junior guard Brittany Prandy, making her second start of the season, put back a missed three-pointer to cut the lead to 6-3.

Head coach Nichole Copeland said she is confident in her team depth, and that any lineup she puts on the floor should do well.

“Brittany’s one of those kids who if you could start six, then she be the sixth one,” Copeland said. “She had a nice game—played within herself. She defensively played well, hit open shots, and drove the ball inside.”

Then senior point guard Kasey Tweed made two straight threes from the same spot on consecutive trips down the floor to give Mustang a 9-6 advantage.

A short jumper by junior forward Lacy Ramon with 3:18 to go in the first extended the lead to 11-6.

Junior forward Jordan Pyle was forced to the bench with two fouls, and Mustang committed six fouls as a team in the first quarter.

Copeland defended her team’s physical play and did not apologize for the fouls.

“I do believe we are physical, but that’s something we had to teach over the last seven years. You can’t not be physical in our league. Our kids play basketball the right way. We teach them the fundamentals,” she said.

Copeland said despite the first quarter lead her team didn’t do all the things it is capable of.

“We got kicked on the offensive boards. One of our goals for the game was for them to get only five offensive rebounds for the game. We gave up six in the first quarter alone. We forgot our fundamentals, and their kids played well and wanted the ball more. We’ll take care of that in practice this week,” Copeland said.

The Lady Broncos perked up in the second quarter, using the same full court press that won them a title in the Ada tournament.

“We went to a press to give ourselves a little jump start and to make them play faster than they wanted to,” Copeland said.

Prandy hit a three from the right side to give the Lady Broncos a seven-point, 19-12 lead.

Both teams were in the bonus with almost six minutes to go in the first half and the Lady Huskies took advantage, drawing fouls and getting to the line.

Copeland said Edmond North scored only four field goals in the first half and went 10-12 from the free throw line.

Prandy scored on a nice drive and layup with 4:12 to play in the first, then Pyle converted an old-fashioned three-point play at 3:09 and the Lady Bronco lead was 24-14.

Ramon added two field goals in a 45 second span to push the lead to 28-14 with 2:16 to play.

Junior forward Autumn Foley scored a three from the top of the key to make it 31-17 with 1:25 to play in the first half.

Ramon finished the half for the Lady Broncos by completing a three-point play with 17 remaining, and Mustang took a 36-18 halftime lead into the locker room.

The defending state champions nursed their lead after the break and were outscored 13-9 in the third quarter.

Pyle scored on a tough shot under the basket to give Mustang a 41-23 lead with 3:38 left in the quarter.

The Lady Huskies tried to mount a fourth quarter comeback, but the Lady Broncos put the clamp down on defense, making steals on several consecutive possessions. One steal lead to a fast break play began by Tweed and finished by junior guard Kaitlin Ellison to make it 50-33.

Ramon scored on another steal and layup to extend the lead to 54-33 with four minutes left in the game.

From there the bench came in for mop up duty.

For the game, Ramon led the team with 18 points. Prandy scored a season-high 10. Pyle added nine in limited duty. Tweed and Foley contributed seven each. Ellison finished with four. Senior guard Sarah Bryan hit a three near the end of the game, and Lofland had two on the night.

In the second game, the Broncos found themselves in a 28-17 hole at the half.

Head coach Alan Green said the second quarter has been tough for the Broncos in their last two games.

“The bottom line is we just were flat in the second quarter. We’ve scored 13 points in the second quarter over the last two games. That just kills us,” Green said.

The Broncos came out in the third quarter playing a 2-3 zone on defense, forcing the Huskies into many low-percentage perimeter shots. The strategy worked and the Broncos began their comeback, outscoring Edmond North 14-7 to cut the lead to four at the end of the third.

Junior guard Auston Davidson hit a floater with nine seconds left in the third to cut the lead to two, but Edmond North scored at the buzzer to make it 35-31.

Edmond North hit two three-pointers and two free throws at the outset of the fourth to push the lead back to 12.

Then the Broncos began to foul to stop the clock and give themselves time to catch up. The strategy worked to a point, as Davidson hit a three from the left corner at 3:36 and Carroll made two threes in a row to make the score 47-59 with just over a minute to play.

But the Huskies never missed from the foul line in the last quarter, converting 16 straight free throws and not allowing the Broncos to get closer than 11 in the last two minutes.

Green said that despite the 65-53 loss he was pleased with his team’s play.

“I told our kids after the game I felt their overall effort was good. (Edmond North) ran their offensive sets and knocked down a bunch of shots. I tip my hat to them. A loss is a loss, but the final score was a bit deceptive,” he said.

Carroll had a team-high 22 points for the Broncos. Junior forward Steven Anderson chipped in 12. Davidson finished with 7 points, and junior forward Austin Feuerborn scored six on the night. Sophomore guard Graham Faulkner hit a three during the fourth quarter comeback, and senior Kevin Kerner finished with three points.

The Broncos are on the road this weekend to defend last year’s championship in the Anadarko tournament.

The Lady Broncos are off until playing at Putnam City North next Tuesday.
Business
Local salon gets new owner and name

Carol Brimm

Faithful customers of Total Eclips hair salon will be greeted by a new owner and business name at the grand opening of Moore and Co. Salon on Saturday, Jan. 20. Mustang native, Crystal Moore, was a stylist and barber at the salon for two years before purchasing it from the former owner.

Moore says the new salon will offer the best hair color, cuts, nail color, and waxing in town with four barbers, one cosmetologist and a nail tech to serve all your pampering needs with a hometown touch.

“We will really listen to our clients because we want every client to leave happy,” Moore said. “Our nail tech uses only a file instead of a drill, that sets us apart.”

The grand opening celebration promises to be an exciting event with food catered by SupperThyme of Yukon, a wine tasting from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. provided by K.C. Wine and Spirits, as well as drawings for free hair cuts, highlights with cuts, a full set of nails and a $50 credit toward any service. Moore says goodie bags of Bed Head, Cat Walk, S Factor, Big Sexy, Scruples, Nioxin, Crew, Matrix, Biolage, Framesi, Creative, and OPI products will also be given away in addition to door prizes. New clients will receive haircuts for $10 from participating stylist and current clients will receive $5 off for referring new customers through Valentines Day.

Moore says the salon has been redecorated and is a fun, contemporary, modern, fashionable shop. One of Moore’s innovations is the offering of party packages for birthdays, weddings, or ladies night out.

“For parties all of the girls can get a mini up-do, manicure and pedicure and we will provide the food and cake,” Moore said.

Moore and Co. Salon is located at 1104 E SH 152 Ste 2, on the south side of SH 152 between Sara and Morgan Rd. Services are provided for men, women and children and walk-ins are welcome. For an appointment or more information call 256-MANE (256-6263).
Business
Looking for gourmet food near Mustang? Find it at Sophabella’s

Brendan Hoover

When Bill and Sandy Brazil opened up their second restaurant at 1781 Garth Brooks Blvd. in Yukon, they gave it the same name as their other place on North May Avenue in Oklahoma City: Sophabella’s.

Named after Bill’s two daughters from a previous marriage, Isabella, five, and Sophia, 12, Sophabella’s specializes in gourmet Chicago-style, deep dish, brick oven pizzas; thick-cut, aged Prime graded steaks; and succulent fresh seafood dishes prepared with a variety of spices and ingredients.

The Brazils, however, found themselves in a quandary after the birth of their first child together, Victoria. Her name was not on the restaurant.

“We’ll have to name a menu item after her or something,” Sandy Brazil said.

Since opening on Dec. 18, the 77-seat restaurant has seen growing crowds every day and is open for both lunch and dinner. Located in the West End Pointe Shopping Center near Kohl’s, the 2,200 square foot space that formerly held Jimmy’s Smokehouse has been handsomely redecorated with furnishings from Bruno’s in Oklahoma City and now resembles an intimate yet bustling Italian bistro.

A recent Friday-night visit to Sophabella’s revealed attentive staff serving a nearly packed house. Manager Gil Lopez smiled as he seated customers and made sure all operations ran smoothly.

A quick look over the dinner menu showed many delicious sounding appetizers and entrees, temptations that could not be easily resisted. Should one get the eight-ounce, Gorgonzola Stuffed Filet Mignon, stuffed with Gorgonzola cheese and topped with a demi-glace cream sauce; the Chicago VII pizza, topped with Italian sausage, pepperoni, seasoned ground beef, Canadian bacon, mushrooms, black olives, green peppers, and mozzarella with light pizza sauce; or the St. Louis Ribs, rubbed with dry spices and slow-smoked in their custom smoker, the one they bought from Jimmy’s when it left?

At Sophabella’s, nearly everything is homemade, from the bread, pizza dough, and sauces, to the garlic butter, pastas, even desserts, Sandy Brazil said.

They offer lunch starting at $6 to $7, and the dinner menu starts around $9, she said.

Bill Brazil grew up in the restaurant business, started cooking when he was 13, and owned the Kettle that used to be on I-40 and Meridian, Sandy Brazil said. He later got out of the business and worked selling high-end floor plans for custom homes.

But his loved of the restaurant business pulled him back in, his wife said, and six years ago they opened the first Sophabella’s. Since then the original store has won Best Of Oklahoma City awards in the Oklahoma Gazette.

Including the first-class food, Sophabella’s sports a very classy, modern looking bar, complete with bins holding over 80 different wines, Sandy Brazil said. Many wine selections are available by the glass and bottle. The bar also features 26 different martinis, draft and bottled beer, a full liquor selection, and specialty coffee drinks.

Sandy Brazil said they chose the Mustang/Yukon location for many reasons.

“We’ve some demographic studies, and we honestly think the people in the area will get behind this. We wanted to open (our second location) someplace where we can plug into the community. We’re looking to be here for a long time,” she said.

Sandy Brazil said they new store was really busy over the holidays, and that the restaurant’s reputation makes it a special occasion destination. Sophabella’s can accommodate large parties and is a place people can go to celebrate any occasion, she said.

For more information or to make a reservation call Sophabella’s in Yukon at 265-0710.
Business
Grab your mail and a cup of Java at ASAP Mail Mart in Mustang

Carol Brimm

Mustang native Billy Hindman and his wife Cheryl saw an opportunity to own their own business and implement some new ideas when the former owner of ASAP Mail Mart in Mustang Creek Plaza decided to sell the store. The Hindmans became the new owners in Dec. 2006.

One of the first changes the Hindmans made was the addition of Java Dave coffee to the shop.

“This is the only place I know if that will ship your package for you, offer you coffee while you wait, and call to let you know when your package arrives,” Hindman said.

ASAP Mail Mart offers full service packing and shipping services, Federal Express and UPS drop off services, and private mail boxes. Hindman said their mailboxes are different than those at the Post Office because Federal Express or UPS can deliver to a Mail Mart mailbox. Also, he said, their mailboxes offer a lot of privacy and customers can call to see if mail has arrived before driving to the store to pick it up. In addition to mailing, packaging and shipping services, ASAP Mail Mart also offers laminating, notary services, boxes, copies, faxes and gift-wrapping, according to Hindman.

He says the coffee bar is a big hit with customers because Java Dave coffee tastes better than Starbucks and is less expensive.

“You can buy it by the cup or take it home and brew it yourself,” Hindman said. “We also offer tea and several different flavors of hot chocolate including: Smucker Delicious, Irish Crème, and Chocolate Mint. The high school kids call the chocolate mint “the bomb”.

Hindman graduated from Mustang High School. The Hindmans have two children, a daughter who graduated from Mustang and a son who currently attends MHS.

ASAP Mail Mart is located at 705 S. Mustang Rd. Call 577-2727 for more information.