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At the top of the Hancock 2017 class

These are the top three seniors academically at Hancock High School. From left, Sabrina Mattson, salutatorian Courtney Timmerman and valedictorian Tyler Reese. The trio laughs at a memory from high school. Rae Yost/Hancock Record1 / 5
Courtney Timmerman2 / 5
Three seniors have reached the academic top in the 2017 senior class at Hancock High School. From left, Sabrina Mattson, Courtney Timmerman, salutatorian and Tyler Reese, valedictorian. The seniors share a memory from school. Rae Yost/Hancock Record3 / 5
Sabrina Mattson.4 / 5
Tyler Reese5 / 5

While these three seniors emerged as the top in the class, Tyler Reese, Courtney Timmerman and Sabrina Mattson said the 2017 senior class at Hancock High School has always been academically inclined.

"Definitely, our class is competitive," Timmerman said. "We strive to do our best instead of slacking off."

The top three seniors and their classmates will graduate Friday, May 19 at the high school.

"We have 13 honor students," Mattson said of the class of 28. Students needs a grade point average of 3.5 or better to graduate with honors.

Classmates pushed themselves to do well academically but they also had help.

"Our teachers pushed us to do the extra...," Reese said.

The three seniors and their classmates and teachers encouraged the class to do well academically but Reese, Mattson and Timmerman said their academic careers had some interesting twists.

This year's college level speech class surprised all three.

The class was a challenge but they liked it.

"It was a lot of fun," Reese said. "We (gave) a lot of speeches. Most of them were long."

Timmerman said she's not inclined to speak in front others but "I really enjoyed speech." She found she actually liked speaking in front of others.

They tested themselves with other academic challenges. "Math has always been tough for me but I knew what I was getting into," Reese said.

"Chemistry this year," Mattson said. "I thought I'd like it more. Not that I didn't like it but it didn't come as easy as others."

The trio said none of them are good at taking tests. Completing the daily work and keeping up with assignments was important, the students said.

Not that they always stayed completely on task. "I'm definitely a procrastinator," Timmerman said. Yet, she completed her work at a high level because she knew she wasn't a great test taker.

"Always do your daily work," Mattson said of advice she'd give underclassmen.

The students balanced school work with various extracurricular activities and seasonal or part-time jobs.

"I've got a planner," Timmerman said. "Then, I prioritize. I need to know what's going on."

"I try to get more work done in school," Reese said. "I have a tough time working at home."

Mattson said there were days when she did what she loved first, before school work.

Sometimes, she might put in additional time at basketball practice and then realize, "I've got two hours of (school) work to do...," Mattson said.

Their days as students at Hancock HIgh School end this week. They will leave a class that not only challenged them but created memories they will cherish.

The class enjoyed each other and while classmates may have disagreements, they forgave any transgressions and moved on, the students said.

Mattson plans to attend Minnesota State Moorhead this fall for education major.

As she graduates, Mattson said one thing she's learned during high school is "....maybe not worry so much about the small things...One comment shouldn't ruin your day."

"I agree on not to worry so much," Reese said. Reese plans to attend South Dakota State University in Brookings. South Dakota, for animal science.

"I would try not to be as much of a perfectionist ...," Timmerman said. Timmerman is headed to Alexandria Technical College for accounting.

They stressed they are taking all the memories in during the final days of high school. Since they all have siblings still in school they know they will return to Hancock High School. They just won't be back as high school students.