Oak Hills High School held its first pep rally of the year Friday, with all the expected accoutrements: their strutting Bulldog mascot, the thunder of students clapping and stomping their feet, and the percussive accompaniment of the school band.


But the pep rally started not by honoring the school's varsity football team, but rather its academic all-stars.


Principal Larry Porras began the pep rally by honoring nine students who had improved on the state's STAR testing in both English Language Arts and Math.


"Not just one level, but two levels over prior years," Porras said, beckoning the students up.


Among those honored were freshman Fernando Bedolla, senior Abel Garcia, sophomore Dakota Herndon, freshman Abel Laguna, sophomore Cristian Marquez, sophomore Da Jaun Mitchell, sophomore Eric Murillo, sophomore Jose Oregel and junior Dilian Plasch.


"Let's show them some love, people!" Porras urged.


Beau Yarbrough may be reached at (760) 956-7108 or at beau@HesperiaStar.com. Follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/Hesperia.Star.