High school drill competition is usually an unheralded activity. Although members of drill teams practice at least as hard and as long (if not longer) than athletes on regular sports team, they receive little, if any publicity from the media.

While the AC/DC rock concert and its accompanying tragedy in the Salt Palace last weekend generated all kinds of press, the 16th Miss Utah Drill Team Pageant, held at the same time in the Salt Palace Arena, went unannounced and unnoticed by probably all but the participants and their immediate families.Drill teams from all over Utah competed in the event, and when it was all over, Monica Maio, a 17-year-old senior from Brighton High, was the winner of the prestigious "Miss Drill Team 1991" honor.

This was the first time a girl south of Bountiful had won the event.

Monica is the daughter of Jerry M. and Marlene Maio of Salt Lake City. She's been dancing for the past 10 years and this is her third year as a member of Brighton High's drill team, the "Accadians," coached by Marlene Griffiths.

Monica did her own choreography for the competition, and she will represent Utah April 5 and 6 in Los Angeles at the Miss Dance Drill USA Pageant.

She finished second in last year's Utah competition and placed in the top 10 in the national competition. She's also a three-year member of the National Honor Society with a 3.8 grade point average and plans to attend the University of Utah.

The other top finishers were first attendant, Annie Millward, Grantsville High; second attendant, Heidi Lish, Bear River High; third attendant, Brooke Anderson, Taylorsville; and fourth attendant: Stephanie Lowe, Union High.

Judging at the Utah event involved a two-minute dance routine, a modeling segment and a one-minute speech. The event was sponsored by Utah State University.