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      Bittersweet last day of school at Lapeer West High School, before merger with East

      School's out at Lapeer's two high schools for the last time before the storied rivals come under one roof this Fall.

      Lapeer West freshman Alexa Ringle said Wednesday, ??We just started to get used to this school and everything and all of a sudden we're getting thrown into another school.?? Next school year, Alexa will attend school across town ?? along with the rest of her peers ?? at the Lapeer East building. All students will be housed at the combined Lapeer High School.

      ??It's a brand new start, brand new school, brand new logo,?? math teacher Kristen Wilcox said.

      The merger was born out of necessity because of declining enrollment, but students and teachers say the change is no less exciting.

      ??It's been a long year, but I think we're really excited about what next year will bring,?? Wilcox said.

      ??Just being like one big community,?? Lapeer West sophomore Donovan Morris described.

      As for the friendly competition East and West enjoyed on the field and court over the years, students say they're ready to cheer for the new Lapeer Lightning.

      ??It'll be cool to see all the best players of Lapeer together,?? Alexa said.

      ??It's just going to bring us closer together and we'll be able to make new rivalries against other schools,?? Donovan said.

      As the bell rang Wednesday the lockers were cleaned out and the hallways cleared, leaving behind only remnants of rivalry past and signs of a united future.The Lapeer West building will be used as the district??s new Center for Innovation. It will house some of the district's other programs, such as college courses offered by local universities.