State Bound: Local bands show off talents, ready for bigger challenge

HARLINGEN – They started in ninth place.

But by the time the Harlingen High School South Marching Band finished playing Saturday, they’d qualified to compete at the state competition.

“It’s really a big accomplishment,” said Sean Minton, 17, a senior percussionist.

He and the other members of the Harlingen South band were jubilant about placing fourth last weekend in the UIL Area G Marching Championship in Pharr-San Juan-Alamo.

It was a dual celebration, with Harlingen High School also qualifying for the state meet next week in San Antonio. A total of 24 schools competed in the PSJA contest last weekend, and four qualified for the state level. Brownsville Hanna High School and United Laredo High School also qualified to compete.

The event, the UIL Texas State Marching Championship, will be held at the Alamodome.

“It’s very tremendous,” said Ronnie Rios, band director for HHS.

“We have made it every single time since 1998,” said Rios, who is also the director of music for the district.

He attributed the continued success of Cardinal musicians to the caliber of students over the years.

“Some students are looking at the first time and they can only go every other year,” Rios said. “The 11th and 12th graders have been there and back.”

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