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Smithfield-Selma band wins national award

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SMITHFIELD, N.C. -

The Smithfield-Selma High School Spartan Regiment brought home a national title after competing in the USBands National Championships in New Jersey last weekend, Johnston County Schools announced in a news release.

The Spartan Regiment competed Nov. 9 at the MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., and was named the IV-A Open National Champion after competing against 11 other schools from Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Georgia. 

The Spartan Regiment scored a 96.875 and took the category awards for Best Music, Best Effect and Best Visual.

The 96.875 score by the Spartan Regiment was the highest score of all 101 competing bands. 

"It was awesome," said Sousaphone player Bryant Jimenez. "I got emotional and even started crying."

Trumpet player Keith Williams added, "It was like a big family moment."

Alto Saxes player Frankie Guo said the competition was "a very unique experience. I'm so grateful for all those who supported us, including the band staff, ROTC, parents, and student body."

Spartan Band Director Brian Jones praised the band for its dedication this season.

"The students have worked extremely hard this season," said Mr. Jones. "We had our largest senior class graduate last year, so out of the 102 students who performed, almost half were rookies.  They've gotten better each week and have done everything the staff has asked of them.  It was also great for me to watch the staffs' reactions.  To share this experience meant a lot to me."     

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