Newly-minted OHS graduates Sergio Borg (left) and Micah Dymond (right) were the 2018 recipients of the Oxford Cup. Presenting them with the coveted trophy is OHS Principal Steven Wolf. For more graduation photos, pick up this week’s copy of The Oxford Leader. Photo by C.J. Carnacchio.
There are many famous cups out there.
In the world of hockey, the legendary Stanley Cup is the pinnacle of the sport.
For golfers in the U.S. and Europe, the battle for the Ryder Cup reigns supreme.
And for those who live and breathe soccer, it all boils down to which country’s team gets to hoist the World Cup.
But there’s only one cup here in Wildcat country that truly matters and that’s the coveted Oxford Cup. This antique silver trophy is more that just a mix of metal and wood with a bunch of names and years engraved all over it.
It’s the tangible embodiment of tradition, excellence, character and leadership at Oxford High School.
It’s a symbol that’s linked generations of Wildcats for nearly nine decades and today, it continues to inspire students to better themselves, their school and their community.
This year, newly-minted OHS graduates Micah Dymond and Sergio Borg joined the fraternity of Oxford Cup winners during the commencement held May 24 at the DTE Energy Music Theatre in Independence Twp.
“I’m really grateful that I can be a part of something that stands for hard work and being a balanced person,” said Dymond, daughter of Jason and Amy Dymond.
“(Oxford) will always feel like home to me. I’ll never forget this place, so it means a lot to me to get this award,” said Borg, son of Joe and Christine Borg.
Since 1930, the Oxford Cup has been awarded annually at commencement to the graduating senior in the top 100 of his or her class who’s shown the best all-around development. Traditionally, one student received the cup, but that changed in 2012 and now, the honor is shared by two students, one male and one female.
Selected by a vote of the junior and senior classes, along with the OHS faculty, the winners must exhibit proficiency in scholarship, friendly social qualities, well-balanced physical development and superior school citizenship.
Finalists for the Oxford Cup included Trent Evans, Luke Meyer, Ben Nuss, Josh Krol, Danielle DeRyckere, Alexzandra Lupu, Madelyn Roop and Kalli Mulholland.
“I was pretty surprised (I won),” Borg noted. “I knew there were a lot of good people up for it this year.”
For both Dymond and Borg winning the cup is the second big honor they’ve received to cap off their high school careers.
Dymond was valedictorian for the Class of 2018, while Borg recently won the George Prince Award, which is presented to the most outstanding male senior athlete.
Both graduates were very active during their OHS careers.
Dymond spent all four years running for the track and field team as well as the cross country team. She also served as vice president of the National Honor Society.
As a stand-out athlete, Borg divided his time between the classroom, the football field and the wrestling mat. During the Division 1 individual state finals for wrestling held at Ford Field earlier this year, Borg took second place in the 135-pound weight class.
He was also a member of Oxford’s DECA group, which is part of a larger global organization that prepares high school and college students for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality and management.
When fall rolls around, Dymond will continue her education at Oakland University, which awarded her a full-tuition scholarship, while Borg will join the ranks of the Wolverines at the University of Michigan.
Dymond plans to study social work and Spanish. “I hope to be a lawyer (handling) social work cases. That’s my dream,” she said.
Borg plans to study mechanical engineering.
Looking back over their school careers, each of the cup winners pointed to someone who greatly influenced them.
For Dymond, it was Mary Kraniak, an elementary school teacher who was with the district from 1990 until her retirement in 2013. She recalled a special project regarding monarch butterflies that Kraniak had her do.
“It really pushed me to learn more on my own and helped me become an independent and curious learner,” Dymond said.
OHS math teacher Phil Kimmel is who Borg credits with exposing him to the many different paths in the world of engineering and helping him choose his favorites.
Borg also gave credit to his brother, Rocco, a 2013 OHS graduate, for helping him to sharpen his competitive edge through sibling fun such as footraces in the yard and wrestling in the living room. “He’s always pushed me to be the best,” he said.
To the OHS students they leave behind and the incoming freshman class, the Oxford Cup winners offered some words of wisdom.
“Keep working hard and never stop dreaming,” Dymond advised. “I never would have dreamt of being valedictorian or the Oxford Cup winner.”
Dymond noted it’s also important to remember that “everybody has their own struggles,” but that doesn’t mean they are any less deserving of love.
“Some people can be hard to love, but it’s totally worth it when you do,” she said.
Borg urged the younger Wildcats to not spend their high school careers sitting on the sidelines.
“Take it all in and do as much as you can,” he said. “You want to do everything at least once.”