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Junior ROTC Teams Dominate Drill Competition

Junior ROTC Drill Teams from the territory dominated the seventh annual Colonel Pedro Negron Drill Competition, hosted Saturday by the Antilles Military Academy in Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico.

Seven schools, including St. Croix Central and Ivanna Eudora Kean high schools, joined the challenge to prove the best in drill competition in the categories of color guard, regulation squad drill, regulation platoon drill, unarmed drill team, armed drill team and the individual "tap out."

St. Croix’s unit took first place in armed and unarmed drill; second in color guard and squad regulation drill; and third in tap out.

The Eudora Kean students captured first in squad regulation drill and tap out; third in platoon regulation drill; and third in unarmed platoon drill.

In the tap out competition, all 250-plus cadets competed, responding to a series of commands, some very tricky and complex, with competitors being "tapped out" when they made a mistake, until only one was left standing.

Saturday that one was Eudora Kean Cadet Shelliqua Bartley, who took first place. In all, Kean cadets captured six of the 10 top spots. Joining Bartley were her classmates and fellow Kean cadets Brendon Esprit, second place; Shellece Nelson, fourth; Franklin Colas, fifth; Josinio Andrew, ninth and and Kerrell Letang, 10th.

"With the increasing difficulty of drill routines practiced by all Junior ROTC teams throughout the nation, teams came forward competing with fresh material in every category," according to Col. Eddy Charles (ret.), the senior Army instructor at Kean.

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