You are the owner of this article.

Oakcrest Marching Ambassadors capture Atlantic Coast Championship


Band members and staff members accept the award. The are, from left, Fred Washington, Megan Buskirk, Shilo Previti, Logan Findeison, junior Katelyn Diaz, senior Lucy Bowman, senior Leilani Smith, senior Lexi Cirigliano, junior Brianna Rodriguez, Richard Tinsley, Lynnette Ruiz, Xavier Patterson and band director Rick Schwartz. 

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP — On Saturday, Oct. 27, the Oakcrest High School Marching Ambassadors competed against 29 other bands in the Tournament of Bands Group 2A Atlantic Coast Championships held at Bishop McDevitt High School in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. They competed against East Coast teams from New York to Virginia and as far west as Ohio.

The trip was certainly worthwhile, as when the judges’ results were tabulated it was announced that the Marching Ambassadors had captured first place with a score of 95.81. The band was also recognized as the winners of best music, best visual and best color guard.

The victory capped an undefeated season for the Marching Ambassadors. The previous week the band traveled to Central Regional High School for the Tournament of Bands NJ State Championships and Kingsway Regional for the Tournament of Bands Region 1 (South Jersey) Championships.

For the fourth consecutive year, the Marching Ambassadors were victorious at both competitions while winning many other awards such as high music, high visual and high color guard.

“I am extremely proud of the students' achievements,” band director Rick Schwartz said. “We asked for a lot and challenged them every rehearsal. The students took the challenge and delivered a great season. This successful season could not have been achieved without the hard work of the Oakcrest Ambassadors staff: Fred Washington, Richard Tinsley, Xavier Patterson, Lynnette Ruiz, Logan Findeison, Shilo Previti and Megan Buskirk.

Members of the band were pleased with their performance.

“The feeling coming off the field at first was confusing yet exciting as people around us were crying,” said wind captain Katelyn Diaz, a 16-year-old junior of Mays Landing. “We knew we did our very best right away, even before the awards were announced. That in itself was a win.”

Co-wind captain Brianna Rodriguez, also 16 of Mays Landing, agreed. “There was a lot of hard work, and it is very rewarding to have all that work lead to a championship.”

Senior color guard captain Lucy Bowman, 17, of Mays Landing had to sit out the championship after suffering a concussion during the regional competition, but was able to attend the event.

“We did very good under the windy, drizzly and gloomy conditions,” she said.

“It was a nerve-wracking season and an insane feeling to win,” said senior clarinet player Shauna Reichman-Lemieux, 17. “This is my family. I am so glad that I participated in the band for four years.”

Load comments



Submit all material to


  • Include the complete name of the group, school or other organization; where it’s located and what area it serves; the name and title, if applicable, of the person submitting the information; a person to contact with questions and whether the contact is only for us or for the public as well.
  • Information should be formatted as little as possible, without tabs or tables.
  • Photos should be high-resolution and emailed as an attachment. Include the names of the people in the photos and, if applicable, any relevant titles or relationships. Indicate how to determine who is who, such as “front row, from left.”


  • Take a picture when you travel of you or your group with one of our weeklies. Send us the picture with names, hometowns and the name of the place you visited.


  • Letters must be fewer than 400 words and received by 9 a.m. Monday for publication the same week.


  • Information to be included in event or trip listings must be submitted online at Scroll down to where it says “Submit an event.” Click on “Go to Form.”
  • You are required to sign in using a username and password. If you have previously made an account, log in using the username and password you created. If you have NOT previously made an account with us, click on “Register Here” (under the Sign In button).
  • Once you have created a username and password, you will be taken to the calendar form. Fill out the form with the relevant information. Please remember that less is best for calendar listings. Note: If you include a website, it must be the full address. For example,, not