Issue 4, 2016

Page 1

THE GALLEON Spanish River Community High School’s award-winning student-run newspaper

Volume XXXII Issue IV @The_Galleon on Twitter @Galleon_News on Instagram

Students shine at National History Day Aryanna Mugnatto Staff Reporter

On January 22nd, Spanish River students had a chance to express their appreciation for history. Students competed in different categories depending on how they chose to create their projects, in the form of a paper, performance, documentary, exhibit or a website. All of the projects were shaped around this year’s theme: Exploration, Encounter, and Exchange. Competitors began at the school level, in which the top two placing groups/students from each category will move onto the District, then County Level competition in February. From there, the competition will continue to the State level in April. “We try to get the kids to marry their talents with the project that they’re doing, so they feel comfortable,” Social Studies teacher Kimberly Green said. “By picking a topic they’re interested in, that follows the theme, they learn a little bit more than we’d have time in class to go over. It’s amazing how it sticks with you once you really delve into a topic.” National History Day has proven to be very popular among Spanish River students, expanding from a single AP

Elana Herman and Maya Cohen with their National History Day poster.

class of about 15 students competing, to a whopping 500 in a matter of years, and it only continues to grow. Not only is the competition an exciting event that gives students a wide range of opportunities to learn about something they enjoy, but it also offers an array of skills that students can carry onto college. These, along with the professional performance and communication skills students acquire over time, will be essential later in life and gives students a head-

Sam Petosa, David Egloff, and Luca Alter with their National History Day poster.

start. Every year, even students who are not required are encouraged and welcomed to compete in the National History Day competition if they wish, as long as their Social Studies teacher allows it. “I enjoyed the project because we got to choose topics we found interesting,” freshman Heath Hindman said. “I chose ‘The Banana Man’ (A British Comic Book).” For the first time ever, the event had to be postponed. This was due to

Geoffrey Tirrell and Stefania Pulido with their National History Day poster.

unexpected high-stakes testing, but students like Hindman remained eager even through the stress. “In order to know where we’re going, we have to know where we’ve been. Learning about history really makes you appreciate all that people have sacrificed and contributed to get us where we are now,” Said Green. “To me, every day is National History Day.” Best of luck to all Sharks who are competing at the county level. PHOTOS BY JILL ROCKWELL

College fair offers opportunities for minority students Laney Ciaccio News Editor

Applying for college can be a daunting experience for anyone, especially for those who are worried about how they will afford it. Thankfully, many scholarship opportunities are available to aid students during this endeavor. One of these opportunities is the Historic Black Colleges/ Universities and Hispanic Servicing College Fair. This year the fair was on January 21st and 22nd and was located at the Palm Beach Convention Center Schools from all over the southern United States were collecting applications on site and had a financial aid advisor present to discuss possible scholarships with the students. “I would like to advance my knowledge of the world around me and would like to have a better outlook on life in the future with hopefully a steady income and a satisfying career” senior Juli Delarosa said.

This is only the second year students from Spanish River have had

find one that will work best. “The trip was really fun, being in a surrounding like that was very

Students attend a college fair in order to explore opportunities for their futures.

the opportunity to attend the fair. The trip was an amazing way to see what options there are that further education after high school and to

interesting and a big boost to everyone, knowing that you have an opportunity to get into a great college and maybe get a scholarship

you would not have known you could get with your grades or test scores” senior Devinchy Mesidor said. Unlike other college fairs, at the Historic Black Colleges/ Universities and Hispanic Serving College Fair, students can get accepted into schools and be granted scholarships and money while still at the venue. “Last year we had individuals who were accepted to schools right on the spot, and who were offered money right on the spot, this is not one where you wait around,” Principal William Latson said. “They can say here is 5,000 dollars towards your tuition, you are automatically accepted, here is the paperwork you need to fill out.” Aside from their history, these colleges are open to anyone who would like to apply. Through the college fair, students can find options and opportunities they never knew existed that will help them realize their dreams of attending college.





Love Is In the Air

Model UN Takes On the Swamp:

February is here and Congradulations to Liam The Galleon staff is trying Graf winning best deleto spread the love this issue. On page 12, read about gate in the Security CounRiver’s couples and on page cil and Zoe Gruen receiv9 check out reality versus ing verbal commendation expectations in movies. If for her work in the Comyou are feeling nostalgic, mitte On The Status Of check out which River Women at GatorMun. athletes have carried on their success in college and beyond on page 18. In need of something more serious? Congradulations to Senior Flip to page 5 to see River’s Class of 2016’s Top Ten: opinion on gun control or 1. Amber Siddiqui pages 10-11 to read about PC 2. Kelsey Sanders culture. We hope you enjoy 3. Nicole Rose issue four because our staff 4. Nicolas Kunigk has worked hard getting it 5. Angelina Uriarte-Wilson to you. Sit back, relax, and 6. Jessica Zheng fall in love with issue four.

- You are just our “type” Love, Galleon

7. Noah Zylberberg 8. Lauren Uzsinay 9. Jack Altman 10. Lucy Hotz




Media Center offers a new form of reading Rachel Horn News Editor

Spanish River’s media center has recently introduced a new way to check out books. Instead of checking out hard copies of books, students are able to check out books electronically through eBooks. Ebooks can be read online by being downloaded to an eReader, computer, media tablet, or smartphone. River is incorporating them into the library through the Destiny Library Catalog via Learning Tools. The School District of Palm Beach County has purchased a variety of titles for the school. The eBooks offer a wide range of topics including business, environment, general reference, history, literature, nation and world, science, and technology and travel. Ebooks are available in many formats from numerous

companies on different platforms with various purchase models. Currently, River’s media center offers 521 different titles of which 270 are fiction and 251 are non-fiction. “Our goal is to expand our collection of non-fiction reference and fiction titles to support the school curriculum,” Media Specialist Deborah Siegel said. Not every book that is available in print is offered in eBook format. River is able to purchase one copy of an eBook and load it onto an unlimited number of devices for a specified period of time. Once purchased, the eBook is part of of the library’s collection. “By increasing our holdings of eBooks, we hope to increase student usage and build a community of life long readers,” Siegel said. The introduction of eBooks will hopefully lead to an increase in the

New space, new place "I would like to see a pool in place of the portables. This would be beneficial for the team to practice so they don't have to go to another school. ”" -Ryan Marcus Freshman

"I would like to see lunch tables with umbrellas because most of the school sits on the floor. " -Kendall Tabachnik Sophomore PHOTO BY ARYANNA MUGNATTO

number of students who check out and read books. Currently, Siegel is providing individual students with the steps in order to access and read eBooks. As more students and teachers learn about this new form of access, the library is looking forward to providing whole class instruction. Large sums of money are due to the media center from patrons who have graduated, withdrawn, or are currently enrolled in River. This year, the library will be placing fines on current students who have returned books over 10 days late or on lost or damaged materials. “Our intent is to have students simply return their books when finished and allow greater access to what books we do have,” Siegel said. The new use of eBooks should help solve the issue of unreturned books, which will lead to fewer fines and greater circulation statistics.

Erica Benamoz reads an eBook during her English class.

“It is my goal to have students use their library to meet, work on student projects, and have greater access, whether for classes, homework or just to come in and use the library for pleasure reading,” Siegel said. “We are working toward the goal of providing limitless access to more materials.” PHOTO BY RACHEL HORN


Mr. and Ms. Spanish River, Taylor Lipsich and Arthur Menezes ride hoverboards before they were banned. PHOTO BY ARTHUR MENEZES

TheGalleon 2015-2016 Co Editors-in-Chief Michael Benrubi Amanda Paige

News Editors Rachel Horn Laney Ciaccio

Associate Editors Rachel Horn Sydney Luntz

Features Editors Noah Zylberberg Max Kozlowski

Tech Editor and Face-Off Jack Altman

Sports Editors Bradley Thomas Justin Haber

Arts and Entertainment Editors Natalia Galicza Zoe Brand Jared Goodman Feature Focus Editor Sydney Luntz

Artists Aryanna Mugnatto Erin Turner Adviser Website Editors Suzanne Delaney Lily Choi Lillian Zhang Principal Staff Reporters William Latson Kent Burkman Burak Pala Ethan Weinstein

The Galleon is a public forum. Copyright 2016

The Galleon is a member of the Quill and Scroll Honorary Society for High School Journalists, the Florida Scholastic Press Association, the Columbia Scholastic Press Association, and the National Scholastic Press Association.




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“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” --The Second Amendment to The United States Constitution

Jack Altman Commentary Guns. If I was to sum up the past two years with just one word, that would be it. Guns have always been a source of heated political gridlock, however, the “Second Amendment” has never proved more contentious than today. In 2012, Adam Lanza killed twenty elementary school students at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut with an automatic rifle. The “Sandy Hook” massacre prompted immediate backlash from both the public and politicians who called for a reform of the American gun control system to prevent future mass shootings. The country proceeded to split into two factions: those who believe that the United States’ gun regulations were too lenient and those who advocate the idea that guns are not the true problem. The former group includes a majority of America’s Democratic Party, while the latter consists

of conservative Republicans who preach strict adherence to the Second Amendment without exception. I would be remiss if I didn’t recognize the role The National Rifle Association plays in all matters of gun-related debate in this country. The NRA is the largest pro-gun lobby group in America, which means its goal is to convince lawmakers not to enact any restrictive legislation on gun use and access. NRA President Wayne LaPierre has been quoted as saying that “the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun,” and according to Fortune magazine, The NRA spent over $13 million donating to political campaigns in 2015. Republican policymakers, along with The NRA, widely believe that there should be limited barriers to owning a gun. Republicans have proposed removing many background checks required to own a gun, saying that these checks only prevent or delay citizens from re-

ceiving what is their constitutional right. Conservatives also contend that if a criminal truly wants to get his or her hands on a gun, they will do so without following traditional legal protocol. In other words, why does a background check matter if malevolent people will go around the system regardless? Since “Sandy Hook,” Democrats have argued against the idea that good people with guns stop bad people with guns. They say that the only way to ensure the protection of citizens’ safety and of the Second Amendment is to strengthen the background check system so that every person receiving a gun is a verified, responsible citizen with no criminal past. Liberals also reject the notion that a responsible gun owner would need to own hundreds if not thousands of ammo at a time. Many lawmakers have explored the route of limiting ammo distribution, which essentially does not limit gun sales. Both parties have aimed to address mental health as the cause of

many mass shootings. A common theme among perpetrators is a history of mental illness. Republicans and Democrats state that if mental health was addressed on a greater scale, then future mass shootings might be prevented. Since 2012, there have been over twenty-five mass shootings on American soil. While lawmakers try to solve this dire problem, it seems that the only idea on which the two parties agree is that the shootings are negative. Beyond that sentiment, a divergence extends throughout America about how to prevent further tragedy. If anything remains clear, it’s that these tragedies must cease. Now.



that come with being an American. But one thing that I can’t stand is our inability to accept that we can learn from other countries. I am referring to our weak policies on gun laws. Our gun laws are ineffective. We should look at what other countries are doing to protect their citizens from gun violence. The statistics are horrifying - 60% of violent crimes in the US involve firearms. Only motor vehicles (35,000) top firearms (33,636) as the leading cause of death in the US according to 2013 CDC figures. The US has had more gun related deaths than any other country in the world. But people should be able to exercise their second amendment right to bear right arms, and protect themselves in the event of a terrorist attack, right? Well, in a study from 2001-2013, there were 3,380 terrorist related deaths, while 406,496 deaths were caused by gun violence. So what am I proposing? Let’s look at other countries that have found success by tightening up gun control laws. Australia has made radical changes, implementing “buy-back” programs that took some 650,000 guns out of circulation.

Art by Erin Turner



Sari Sheiner Speech Pathologist I love America, and the freedoms

They also banned high caliber rifles and shotguns, implemented stricter licensing requirements, and altered the registration process of remaining firearms. Following these changes, gunshot fatalities dropped by more than 50% - that sounds like progress to me. Countries like Finland and Norway have also implemented stricter gun laws and found success. I propose we look at what has worked in other countries and mimic that - there’s no law against copying a good idea, right?We are living under laws that were written 225 years ago, when our nation was under threat of invasion by the British. Times have changed. The greatest danger we now face is other Americans with guns! The reality is-guns are dangerous, numbers don’t lie, and until we figure out how to regulate gun ownership, Americans will never be safe. Because the person in line behind you, or in the car beside you, just might have a gun, and you never know what they’ll do.

Amanda Paige Senior


Since the San Bernardino massacre in 2015, President Obama has been pushing his gun control agenda. To Obama’s dismay, public interest in guns spike whenever he condemns gun violence or calls for new measures to restrict firearms. The majority of Americans are not purchasing guns because they plan on harming others; they purchase guns to defend themselves and their families from evil people who decide to commit heinous acts. Having access to a deadly weapon does not turn a person into a killer. There is no background check in the world that will stop an evil person, or a terrorist, from getting their hands on a gun. The gun control Obama is proposing will only hurt law-abiding Americans. California has the strictest gun laws in the nation, but that did not stop the Islamic Extremist couple that took 14 lives just before the holidays in San Bernardino. Paris, France has some of the strictest gun laws in the entire world, yet 129 people lost their lives and many more were wounded after the Paris attacks on November 13th, 2015. As hard as it is to admit it, if a

person at one of the targeted locations had a gun, there is a chance bullets would have gone the opposite way, and peoples’ lives would have been saved. Our nation should focus on mental health problems. From Adam Lanza in Newtown to Aaron Alexis at the Washington Navy Yard, these men have two things in common: they committed mass murder and had mental health problems. Professionals who analyze mental health agree that red flags popped up with all these men before the massacres. If their state of mental health was acknowledged, these tragedies may have been prevented. The violent crime rate in the U.S. has decreased in the past 20 years, but it is not surprising that fear has risen due to high-profile incidents of mass killings. The truth is, these tragic mass killings were committed by a very small amount of people with the intent to harm others and no gun control law would prevent this. There cannot be a law created that infringes on Amer-

icans’ right to bear arms for the few who decided to commit a crime. Images Courtesy of Google




Ramblings of a Redhead Amanda Paige

self-funding his entire campaign, so he will not “owe anybody anything.” It was not long after that when June 16th, 2015, is not a day many Trump proposed a plan to end illepeople recall anything significant gal immigration. His plan? To build a occurring, but one major event happened which disrupted conventional politics- Donald Trump announced his candidacy for President of the United States. Much of the media and plenty of Americans bet against the billionaire real-estate mogul in the beginning, claiming his campaign will be a joke and just entertainment. His campaign is certainly entertaining, but not a joke, as he is the frontrunner of the Republican candidates and has been for months. The first thing news outlets hounded on was Trump’s wealth and how Americans will find him “out of touch” due to his multi-billion dollar net worth. It was a reasonable assumption looking at the 2012 Presidential “huge” wall along the Mexican border campaign when Republican candi- and have Mexico pay for it. The idea date Mitt Romney struggled with his brought lots of backlash with peolikability partly due to his wealth. ple wondering how Trump will get Unlike Romney, Trump has been very Mexico to pay for the wall. Believe it upfront with his wealth, even using it or not, Trump actually has a plan: imas a selling point. In fact, one reason pose taxes, fees, and tariffs on Meximany Americans like him is that he is can products, ports, and temporary


visas. Besides the wall, Trump plans to make a mandatory return of all criminal aliens and defund sanctuary cities. After the San Bernardino massacre, Trump announced that if he were

President he would order a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country's representatives can figure out what is going on.” As you can imagine, people jumped on Trump for this statement calling him racist, fascist, and basically any other de-

rogatory term you can call a person. Even Republican candidates attacked Trump for this statement, Jeb Bush saying he has become “unhinged” and John Kasich noting his “outrageous divisiveness” which makes him “entirely unsuited” to be President. After all this Trump must be in last place, right? Wrong. He is still number one in all the polls. Trump is like no other candidate. People are sick and tired of the corruption and inability to get things done in Washington and they are ready for an “outsider” who tells it like it is. The person many Americans are looking to is Trump. Say what you want about Trump, bash his ideas, bash what he says, but he is an intelligent man who is running a smart campaign. Although I do not support Trump, I realize a strong candidate when I see one. There is no denying Trump is very likely to become the Republican nominee for the general election in November. Between the Socialist, and the candidate under FBI Investigation, Trump may even be the 45th President of the United States.


Sounding of the Horn Rachel Horn

Associate Editor

For many teenagers, getting their permit as soon as they turn 15 and taking their driver’s test the day they turn 16 is a top priority and a countdown event. However, for me it was completely different. I waited five months after my 15th birthday to get my permit and one year and three months after my 16th birthday in order to get my license. Most teenagers dream about the day they can get some freedom from their parents and have a license to drive around Boca Raton. I was never in that rush. For me, it was just something that was never that important. My priorities throughout my freshman and sophomore years of high school were to do well in school and have fun. I preferred to take advantage of every moment that I had off from school, enjoying activities with family and friends, rather than taking driving lessons and

practicing parking. In addition, with so many obligations, I did not feel like taking on the additional responsibility of becoming an experienced driver. As the summer of 2015 came to an end and I was getting p re p a re d for my junior year of high school, I suddenly got the urge to get my driver’s license. In fact, I was wishing I already had it. Once school started and I found myself waiting in the car pool line after school amongst freshman and sophomores, I came to the realization

that I was one of the only juniors to not be driving to and from school. Every single one of my friends was already driving and I became reliant on them for rides. Whether we were going to mall, beach or out to eat, I always a s k e d them to pick me up. When I decided that I wanted to finally take the driver’s test and partake in the freedom that all my friends are enjoying, my parents informed me that they still didn’t feel safe sending me off to drive on my own. They said that I had not

spent the proper amount of time preparing and practicing. Of course I argued with them, until I realized that they were right. So my practice moved into high gear. I drove home from school every day, to the beach, to the mall, and out to every errand that my parents needed to run. Alas, my parents felt that I was prepared and had the proper experience and skills to take my test and get my license. I made my appointment for January and thankfully my examiner felt that I mastered the skills necessary to drive on my own, and she passed me on my first try. So now I can drive, but I don’t have a car yet, I am ok with that for now, because I now have the opportunity be independent and drive on my own. With that being said, I advise all freshman and sophomores to get your permit and license as soon as you can because if you don’t, you will regret it!




Mike’s Mind Michael Benrubi Editor-in-Chief

Kanye West is genius, but no one beside myself wants to hear it or believe it. Kanye West and the word “genius” do not go together well for most people. However, I believe it is narrow-minded to only observe his behaviors and actions and overlook his innovative, groundbreaking, and timeless discography along with the business empire he has built. Yes, we all know very well about his controversial behavior in the past, which includes stealing a young Taylor Swift’s moment in front of millions of people at the 2009 MTV Music Awards and accusing former President George Bush of “not car-

Sydney Luntz

ing about black people.” These are definitely the things that come to mind for most Americans when Kanye’s name is mentioned. Despite his rash and inappropriate behaviors in the past, many do not appreciate “Yeezy” for his artistic and marketing abilities. After reading this piece, my hope is that you will at least respect the self-proclaimed god for what he has done for many fans of hip-hop including myself. After making beats for burgeoning local artists in the 1990’s, the journey to superstardom began in 2000 after Jay-Z (West’s mentor and celebrity best friend) discovered him and allowed him to produce beats for artists on his then renowned record label, Roc-AFella records. Many credit West with revitalizing Jay-Z’s career after producing many beats for his classic album, The Blueprint. Kanye pioneered a new style of rap that revolutionized and elevated the genre through soulful beats and melodic singing. West wanted to be a rapper, even though many doubted his abilities as an emcee. He was later reluctantly signed to Roc-A-Fella and released his debut album, The College Dropout in 2004. This album is often listed as the greatest album of all time and one of the best debut albums in history. West went on to release six more studio albums and two collaboration albums, one with rap mogul Jay-Z. West is now one of the best-selling artists of all time and has won 21 Grammy Awards, making him one of

the most awarded artists of all time. What makes for his greatness is that each and every one of his albums has a distinct and unique style that is different from his others. 808’s and Heartbreak was released in 2008 after a series of distressing personal events for West, including the incident with Swift and the ending of his engagement. The highly anticipated album served as a letdown for many fans who were confused at this new and uncharacteristic style of production and the heavy use of auto-tune. It was a new and innovative style that the genre had never seen before. As years went on, many realized how groundbreaking it was and the influence it had on hip hop music. Popular artists such as Drake, The Weeknd, Kid Cudi, and Frank Ocean have all credited this album with allowing them to take creative risks in a new style of hip hop that allowed them to express their feelings through a new sound. This is just one of the many of West’s artistic endeavors that shaped the genre. West has not released a new album since the abrasive and electronic Yeezus in 2013. While many have not appreciated the new sound on this project, it is yet to be determined whether or not it will soon have the impact on hip hop that his other albums have had. In his three years off, West went on tour, married Kim Kardashian, saw the birth of two of his children, and


promoted his new fashion line and shoe, Yeezy’s, with Adidas. He has now become a fashion and business mogul, creating shoes that sell out in a matter of seconds. His seventh studio album, Waves, is scheduled to be released on February 11, 2016. He has already released a few songs that have hinted towards a vintage style that we have not heard in a while. While West will always be looked at as an arrogant, disrespectful, and most of all, crazy, it is obvious that he has changed the genre of hip-hop more than any other rapper. I cannot change your decision to hate him for his personality and behavior, but I hope that you at least acknowledge and respect his accomplishments in music and fashion like I do. We are yet to see if he will have accomplishments in the area of politics, as he announced that he is running for Presi-

dent in 2020. Having him running our country may be stretching it (like Trump isn’t?), but no matter what he does in the future, he will succeed in being as progressive and innovative as he always has. Make sure you support Kanye’s genius by purchasing his new album next week.

Sincerely, Sydney


Associate Editor

The most overpowering benefit, and the most overpowering burden in my life, has been my passion. Passion is a tough, bittersweet aspect of existence. We are told from a young age to invest our time in whatever suits our liking- whether it be playing the piano, baking decadence, or formulating theories- we are told to find it. My passion came to me at an innocent age on the rare editions floor of The Strand Book Store. Discovering my infatuation with the English language has proved itself to be wholly innate and inevitable. We are always faced with the fear of what we are going to do with our lives, where we will be in ten years, and how much success we will nurture. Personally, I see it being even more frightful having every sector panned out...and having to live up to it. I won’t be the first to tell anyone that there is an unpredictable number of people seeking to watch you strive just to break you down. But, I also

won’t be the first to tell anyone to never surrender. To be critiqued on what you love is discouraging and disheartening to say the least. Tell me the food I cook tastes bitter, tell me the clothes I wear aren’t up to par with today’s fashion, tell me my political and historical knowledge isn’t fit for an intellectual, but once you tell me my English is weak and my sentences are stale, my heart will break. It is hard explaining to others why I cried because a girl said my editorials “sucked,” or why I took my essay revisions junior year way too seriously for egotistical reasons, or why when a teacher lambasted a paper I turned in for having poor grammar I went home in tears. Everyone says, “What’s the big deal? Calm down. I don’t understand why you’re so beat up, it’s not a big deal!” But, it is a big deal, it’s the biggest deal there is to me because I am being critiqued on my passion. I am being critiqued on the only certainty I see in my future, I am being critiqued on a topic that

I am unable to control my feelings towards, and I am being critiqued on my undeniable gravitation towards something that does more than inspire me, it takes over me. Tell a designer his hemlines are shabby or a photographer her lighting is poor- tell me how they react. Everyone has a trigger, no matter how minimal or monstrous; everyone has a trigger. Despite the countless times in my mother’s arms crying over the bad days, nothing beats the good days of snuggling into bed with a cup of tea and opening a Sir Arthur Conan Doyle story or an Elizabeth Barrett Browning poem and falling in love with the written word all over again. There is such a reward to having ardor. Every English lesson I didn’t understand, I knew I’d push to understand the next; any essay I did poorly on, I knew I’d fix; and any competition that I didn’t make the cut because I wasn’t writing about dystopian societies and vampiric values (because we all know that is what will always be in style)...I knew would only push me to do better.

The motivation a passion gives you, immensely outweighs the callous commentary of others. Again, I won’t be the first to tell you. In all honesty, passion has made me vulnerable. Passion tears me apart, and when I am broken by my passion the only thing that can bring me back is that same passion. If you have passion, regardless of what it is, I hope you too understand these benefits and burdens. It has been, and will continue to be, quite the hindrance to conquer. Just remember: all of these critiques and uncertainties are a test, a test to see how badly we really want it.





Television dismisses reality Jared Goodman

Arts and Entertainment Editor It has been a pressing issue since the beginning of television: are there any correlations between what occurs on television and what people expect in real life? If somebody were to shoot and kill somebody in an action movie, would that make the viewer of that scene any more inclined to violent activity? Would seeing a fairytale relationship in a Disney movie result in higher expectations for that viewer’s real life relationship? There are a number of studies both for and against these issues. In 217 studies done between 1957-1990 by psychologists George Comstock and Haejung Paik, it was discovered that just short-term exposure to media violence does, in fact, draw a parallel to actual violence done in real life. It was also discovered that early childhood exposure to television violence resulted in aggressive behavior performed by these people later in life. This is in part due to the fact that young children’s’ brains are still developing and are very impressionable. This is also true to a lesser extent for teens, whose brains are still developing as well, and

witnessing media violence could lead to regretful decisions in school and life on the teen’s part. “I do believe that there is a connection between what people see on television and the choices they make in real life,” junior James Alfano said. “I do not think that there is a very strong connection, though.” On the other hand, many people would argue that there is no relationship between some of the scenarios seen on television and what occurs in real life. Think about it: millions of people all over the world witness media violence every day, whether it is by watching television or playing video games. Now think about how many shootings you have heard about throughout the years. There are not that many of themespecially when you consider how many people are exposed to media violence every day. This theory is also arguably true for love and relationships seen on television. Although no studies have been done on the matter, some people do not see why perfect relationships seen on television cannot exist in real life. This may be true for some rare relationships, but most of the time this is not the case.

Consider all the movies about love and relationships that have been made in the past few years alone. Many teens, especially those that are highly impressionable, are bound to expect things from their partner that may be unrealistic for the partner to provide, such as unconditional love and zero arguments throughout the course of the relationship. With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, it seems as though these expectations are increasing even more and are just becoming more unrealistic. Studies show that viewers of notoriusly “Many people would like to believe violent movies like Pulp Fiction may be more that there’s one person out there that’s inclined to perform violent acts in real life. made for only them,” junior Francesca Pucci said. “This is in part due to what is represented in the media when, in reality, the majority of people in the world will end up falling in love many times in their life. This is an important truth that many people fail to realize.” Overall, students must choose wisely when it comes to the shows they watch and the video games they play, and realize that what they witness in the media should not always relate to what they do or how they act in real life.

whole movie pretty much paralleled the events of A New Hope.” Some critics over at The Atlantic Magazine suggested that the director, JJ Abrams, chose to recycle so much from A New Hope because he wanted to “wipe the slate clean.” The series was not in the best standing, especially after the prequels were universally disliked. As a result, Abrams tried to show some of the good times that made the audience fall in love with Star Wars in the first place. While The Force Awakens may not have been perfect, it did something very special: it gave parents a chance to connect and bond with their children by experiencing a new chapter in the saga together, just as they had experienced it 40 years ago. “I noticed a father and his son sitting in front of me,” Senior Leonardo Lira said. “He would explain to his son who the old characters who showed

up were.” While most of the world could see the rest of the Star Wars saga anytime they wanted, some were not as lucky. In the year the first Star Wars movie debuted, 1977, it had been two years since communist Chinese leader Mao Zedong had passed away. China continued their strict blockade of western media, not allowing its citizens to view movies made in the United States. Only Chinese government produced movies could be screened, and those movies were not exactly box office hits. The Force Awakens, however, was allowed to be screened to the public, becoming the very first Star Wars movie to be publicly released in China. Disney had a huge promotional campaign, which included putting 500 storm troopers on the Great Wall of China, and having top Chinese actors talk about the film prior to its release. Even so, the movie was not as successful in China as it was in the United States or the United

Viewers of shows like The Bachelor may expect more out of their partners.


the force awakens at river

Burak Pala

Staff Reporter Star Wars: The Force Awakens was the biggest domestic box office success of 2015. In fact, it was the biggest success of the entire decade. Pushing aside Jurassic World with a staggering $815 million in box office ticket sales and beating the previous record holder, Avatar. It is safe to say movie-goers loved the new film in the popular series. However, it was not flawless. Most of the people who saw the movie enjoyed it, although some claimed that it was too similar to the fourth installment, A New Hope. “It was amazing, but it had too many similarities to A New Hope,” Senior and Star Wars enthusiast Ben Schandelson said. “There was another Death Star, and another masked villain, and the

Villain Kylo Ren and stormtroopers

The new Star Wars robot, BB-8

Kingdom. Why? Possibly because the Chinese population could not watch the previous movies, which prevented them from having this cult following found in the United States and the United Kingdom. Despite its flaws, The Force Awakens was an epic success. It was an awesome return to what made the Star Wars saga great: giant galaxies sprawling with life, new technology only seen in dreams, and the underlying message that even the most unlikely person can become a hero. Will the next two planned Star Wars films be just as successful? One cannot be too sure. One thing to be sure of is that the upcoming films will continue to inspire and fill our generation with awe and hope, a trend their predecessors started almost 40 years ago. IMAGES COURTESY OF GOOGLE IMAGES ART BY ERIN TURNER



Lampman takes center stage

Zoe Brand

Arts & Entertainment Editor Spanish River offers a variety of activities to entertain the interests of the student population. The school has hosted events ranging from football games to community service projects, but for those more interested in a laugh, a new performance is coming soon that may strike your interest. AP U.S. History teacher, Aaron Lampman, along with several students have created “The Lampman Show”. The Lampman Show is a compilation of skits and scenes from television and notable movies. This show makes an appearance at River every two years motivating Lampman and his team of expert comedians (students) to keep the show interesting. “We try not to repeat ourselves and come up with a different theme and running jokes throughout,” Lampman said. The show is guaranteed to be a good time, filled with lots of laughs, jokes, and an all-star cast of River students. “My favorite part about being in the show is having the chance to

express myself while recreating some hysterical scenes,” junior Meredith Levin, a performer in the show said. Not only will the show give you a laugh, but the proceeds raised from the event will go towards the Drama and Stagecraft departments. The Drama department holds several

from lights, to costumes, to the rights of a show. The Drama department is in need of many materials to continue putting on quality productions. “Without the necessary funding it makes it difficult to perform more elaborate shows,” freshman Drama student Gina Genova

events to raise additional funds needed to run the program. “Our ticket sales are our major way of making money. We also do outreach and sell advertisements,” Drama department head Steven Bunin said. The money raised by the Drama department is used towards anything


The Stagecraft department also benefits from The Lampman Show. Stagecraft’s job on campus is to maintain and run the theater program on campus. “My students are responsible for running every show that is in the theater,” Stagecraft director Dianna


Vacco said. Stagecraft students must know how to operate sound systems, lights, and other costly machines that are necessary to put on a show. For the Stagecraft program to continue, fundraisers and events are frequently held to raise money. “Without the money from fundraisers, our job would be a lot harder to do,” junior and Stagecraft member Bryant Giang said. Both the Stagecraft and Drama departments require extra fundraising to continue the work they do. Without the help of the Stagecraft department and the artistic talents of those in the Drama department, a quality production at River would be hard to achieve. The Lampman Show will tentatively take place on April 7th and 8th in the Blackbox Theater. Look out for a confirmed date on the announcements and the Galleon Instagram. Make sure to come out to have a laugh while supporting the very important and talented Stagecraft and Drama departments. ART BY ARYANNA MUGNATTO

hPoetry Speaks to River Studentsh Natalia Galicza

Arts & Entertainment Editor

Most of my work is inspired by the everyday concern of everyday life.” This poem allowed students to get involved in the performance. Mark Kelly Smith encouraged audience participation such as making certain sounds, repeating phrases, and making movements or gestures. Dominique Christina shared her methods when participating in performance poetry.

Spanish River hosted the annual poetry slam on January 22. This event provided an opportunity for our Sharks to become inspired by the creative and insightful works of some celebrated poets. The event was an enriching experience, allowing students to hear a range of talented poets speak their well-crafted words. The Palm Beach Poetry Festival High School Performance Poetry Project was created by Dr. Blaise Allen in 2005. The event was created to give students the possibility to hear quality poetry and leave an impact on students’ lives. Dominique Christina and Mark Kelly Smith both performed at the event, and are both widely known poets with notable talent. Poet Marc Kelly Smith Smith created the movement of “I had no idea what I would share,” performance poetry, and Christina is Christina said. “I’m one of those poets/ a Woman of the World Performance people that let spirits guide that. All Champion. Both celebrated poets I can tell you is that I perform in the alternated performances and shared moment and offer what medicine I various works. can.” Smith opened the poetry slam with One of her poems included “Period”, a participation poem. a poem about periods that spoke out “I opened with ‘Nightbound’, a against shaming women for their participation poem about taking the menstrual cycles. It was a poem with a computer trains in Chicago,” Smith powerful message that gained a lot of said. “It gave students a clear idea of applause from the student audience. what performance poetry is all about. Both Smith and Christina were

inspired to enter the world of poetry by personal means. “My college sweetheart Sandi who later became my first wife and mother to my three children was my inspiration.” Smith said. “She was into poetry and I was into her, so naturally love poems had to be written.” Christina spoke about her relationship with poetry as well. “I’ve always loved language,”Christina

Poet Dominique Christina

said. “Poetry is a really gorgeous way to tell the truth. I became enamored with poetry because it saved my life. Because it beckoned me to speak.” Christina also shared some poets that have had influence on her own work. Some of the poets include Edgar Allan Poe, Shakespeare, T.S. Eliot, and Emily Dickenson. After speaking about the poets that inspired her to engage in poetry, Christina encouraged students to discover some poets that inspire them.

When asked about what they wanted the students to take away from the experience they provided, Smith and Christina shared some heartfelt answers. “I just hope students feel seen and inspired,” Christina said. “I hope they know they can make it, and I hope they know art facilitates profound healing.” Mark Kelly Smith also answered with strong feeling. “To understand that creative expression, whether it be poetry, music, dance, theater, or visual arts, it is sacred and vital to our human experience and well being,” Smith said. “That it should not be exploited, defused, and debased as a means to prop up and promote capitalism and commercial interests, That as Carl Sandburg said, ‘Poetry is the heart of the people, and the People is everyone; you and I and all the others. What everybody says is what we all say.’” This poetry slam allowed students to become acquainted with the art of performance poetry, and share a personal moment with the poets by listening to their art. For upcoming local poetry events be sure to check out





Did They Really

The Overwhelming N “I think the big problem this country has is being politically correct. I’ve been challenged by so many people and I don’t, frankly, have time for total political correctness. And to be honest with you, this country doesn’t have time, either.”

- Donald Trump

The New York Times

August 6, 2015

Sydney Luntz

“PC has affected us [society] both negatively and positively,” junior Liam Graf said. “On one hand PC in terms of laws and government has allowed many to gain rights and freedoms they were previously denied.” Although political correctness has become a ubiquitous ideal on college campuses, it has been taken to increasingly

is ” y e a g d “ to th r o w on ” e s i h e t par ual? v ed lie com sex e y ve u b e in omo r o y siv h su “ o s n t D fe rm en e f t d o tu NO ed s y of aid ve r u s ss t en d tu ES s of id Y sa

% 4 7 % 6 2

drastic levels due to the disparity in minorities at universities today compared to twenty or thirty years ago. This being said, universities have also begun acknowledging those who identify as a different sexuality or transgender- again, another accumulation of terms to regard politically correctly. “It’s just a question

of civility and mutual respect without sacrificing honesty,” Guidance Counselor Roz Towers said. “If being politically correct means being civil, courteous, considerate, and sensitive to another human being when expressing an opinion about a possibly sensitive subject, there is nothing wrong with

being honest, but not insulting.” Currently, the concept of political correctness is most omnipresent in the 2016 Presidential Campaign in which many candidates are either defending the nature and intentions of a politically correct nation or are blaming this culture for the inefficient censorship of speech.

“One downside of PC culture is that I feel it limits free speech because now people worry about saying the PC term rather than saying what they believe or what is right,” Graf said. Whether it be Donald Trump blaming the offensive perception of of his political ideology on society’s politically correct fixation, or

Do you believe the word “colored” is offensive in comparison to the term “black?”

surveyed said NO

35% of students surveyed said YES

university pining for racia is evident and u that PC culture discussion and our country. “Political c affects society negative way Ophir Rahim “Logic and are often un by an emotio of impulsivene


65% of students


There has been a prominent force in recent times taking over our nation; and no, this does not regard terrorist attacks or the use of firearms, but rather the idea of PC Culture. PC Culture is the term to describe what many civilians believe our country has gradually grown to become today: a politically correct

society. This idea of being politically correct has overwhelmed the nation in various ways for countless years; however, after the University of Missouri’s single-student hunger strike and Yale’s viral YouTube video both regarding racial tension in November of 2015, people began to wonder if being politically correct has gone too far.


Feature-Focus Editor

to pol




it’s not th




Just Say That?

Nature of PC Culture

“We are at a stage in history in which remolding society is one of the great challenges facing all of us.” -Hillary Clinton

June 16, 2015

students al justice, it undeniable is of great debate in

correctness in a very y,” senior mi said. decisions ndermined onal sense ess by our

politicians and leaders.” Despite the ample reasons to be or not to be politically correct, copious individuals can agree there is a time and place for this manner. “It is important not to use racial slurs or derogatory terms,” Graf said. “People should be aware of their speech when it is a sensitive topic or when they are explicitly

be looked at differently on a case by case and individual basis. Maintaining relations with certain individuals is ever so important and sometimes keeping your mouth shut is the best thing to do. While free speech is a constitutional right, hate speech is not.” Nonetheless, every individual is made up of idiosyncrasies, influenced perspectives,



asked to be cautious.” Rahimi shares similar views in there being a regulated essence of PC culture, “I do not believe political correctness has much of a place in government and politics although our politicians effectively use this strategy to sway voters to ‘feel better about themselves,’” Rahimi said. “However, PC culture can




he way to go



and sometimes racial bias that shapes how he or she speaks about others and to others. These peculiar ways of any citizen can occasionally make it difficult to avoid offending a second party. A blatant, yet overlooked factor to take into consideration when focusing on PC culture is that every individual is varyingly different. Consequently,

not everyone can find it a feasible task to tailor their speech to everyone else’s individualistic sensitivities, thus, bringing up another difficult task in the realm of being politically correct. “The fear of marginally offending certain individuals often overclouds the real issues at hand in failing to call certain facts what they truly happen to be,” Rahimi

said. For ages we can testify to having learned mannered ways that address certain ethnicities, genders, or foreign terms, but possibly we have never acknowledged them as this submerging force known as PC culture. In other words, PC culture has always surrounded us, regardless of its portrayal. “On the geopolitical

front, PC often supersede the safety issues we face, it [political correctness] seems to now dominate all discourse,” Rahimi said. “We as humans must find a balance of when to be and when not to be politically correct.” So when it boils down to discussing an opinion, you decide. PC Culture: manners or societal destruction?

Do y is o ou be l ffe nsi ieve t ve he i wor n ter c o d“ mp m“ ari spec dis son ia abl ed? to t l” of s ” he tud ent NO s sur vey of s ed sai tud d ent YE s sur S vey ed sai d









RiverS GOT THE LOVE Max Kozlowski Features Editor

Circa 1700 years ago, it is believed that a man sentenced to execution left his final words in a note. Ironically, this February many students at Spanish River will be ending their letters the same way: “From your Valentine.” This is not exactly the fuzzy intro that most Valentine’s Day writing begins with, but this is the true story of the original St. Valentine. Our annual day of love is upon us once again, and River students are sure to be expressing their affection. Although this year’s Valentine’s Day falls on a Sunday, in the days preceding there should be no shortage of giant teddy bears and boxes of chocolates inundating River’s halls. However, there seems to be a load of misguided clichés surrounding Valentine’s Day. Every TV show and movie released around this time makes a huge deal about how boyfriends can not do anything less than the incredible, and that all singles are miserable and lonely. Senior Louis

Fischer says Valentine’s Day does not really come close to these extreme expectations. “Being single during Valentine’s Day has not really affected me at all, and I just treat it like a normal day,” Fischer said. “It’s a little ridiculous to think people will mope around all day because they don’t have anyone to celebrate it with. There are plenty of ways to have fun, just like any other day.” Similar to Fischer, senior Sydney Lopez and her boyfriend Rico Martinez find Valentine’s Day to be clouded with misconceptions. Lopez and Martinez have been together for over two years, so this will be their

third Valentine’s Day together. Lopez stresses the importance of a first Valentine’s Day with a new partner, but now prefers simplicity over the extravagance many would expect. “First Valentine’s Days are really fun because you finally have someone to share the day with, so I think going all out and giving in to the cheesy box of chocolates and flowers is great,” Lopez said. “But after the first one, paying attention to the everyday details of showing your boyfriend or girlfriend how much you care speaks more than stale chocolate. My ideal Valentine’s Day consists of a fluffy blanket and a massive pizza, which I sometimes share with him.”

Husband and wife, Mr. and Mrs. Jones, pose with their pup.

Social Studies teacher Barbara Jones has the opportunity to see Valentine’s Day from a unique perspective: as a teacher and a wife. As a teacher Jones has witnessed students perform many acts of romance for their special someone, and, of course, as a wife she has first hand experience on the holiday. “We’ve come to realize it’s most important to be loving year round. Years ago he [her husband] made a point of showing his love and appreciation for me on more than just Valentine’s Day, “ Jones said. “High school is also a social setting, so I think the balloons and chocolates are important. “ Whether it is your 30th Valentine’s Day like Mrs. and Mr. Jones, or your first with your high school sweetheart, make it your own.


The Galleon Picks Alternative Careers

Ms. Cangelosi Alternate Job: Host of Childrens’ Science Show With her passion for science and kids, Cangelosi would be a great host to teach little kids.

Ms. Healy-Curci Alternate Job: Hockey Announcer

Mr. Tufo Alternate Job: CEO of mutinational

A native Canadian, Healy-Curci has demonstrated a knack for the sport of hockey and would be the perfect fit to commentate.

tutoring business Tufo’s combination of mathematical knowledge and entrepreneurial wisdom is unbeatable.

Mr. Bazile Alternate Job: Fashion Mogul

Mr. Dybas Alternate Job: 49ers Head Coach

Mr. Bazile is known to dazzle with his unique sense of style and dapper wardrobe.

Dybas’ fandom and loyalty to the 49ers is unparalled and the position is up in the air.

Ms. Fish Alternate Job: Lady Gaga Fish has proven to be quite the performer and Lady Gaga seems to ber her specialty. PHOTOS COURTESY OF MAX KOZLOWSKI AND VARIOUS TEACHERS




Holocaust Survivors Share Their Stories Kent Burkman and Natalia Galicza young boy during the attacks, he Staff Reporter/Arts & Entertainment Editor

On January 26th, 2016 Spanish River hosted the annual Holocaust presentation in the Countess de Hoernle theatre for all current sophomores. Holocaust survivor Allen Small was the guest speaker and shared his experiences. Allen Small age 82, was only 11 years old when the Nazi Germans attacked his village. As a

Students and teachers pose with survivors.

was told by his mother to hide in the attic. After Small heard multiple shots, he went downstairs to find that his mother and all his family except his older sister had been killed. He later fled to the forest to escape the vicious wrath of the Nazis. Small worked as a partisan during the war, attacking German soldiers and trying to rescue as many Jewish victims as possible. The partisans helped sabotage German messages, trains carrying explosives, and other potential threats. Later, as an adult, Small deided to leave Europe and come to the United States. S m a l l demonstrated t r u e heroism and perseverance by risking his life to save the lives of others

during such a horrific time period. Students got to experience the vivid stories of the war while also gaining advice. Due to the Holocaust, Small was unable to start his education in high school and college. Because of this, Small’s most stressed point in his discussion with sophomores was education. Small stated that children should be able to receive a quality education and be appreciative for it, since many children around the world do not have the same opportunities. Small’s presentation provided us with a greater understanding of how much Americans, as a whole, take for granted. He provided us with a new perspective, allowing for more empathy and awareness for world issues. Small, alongside millions of others, experienced devastating life changes during the Holocaust. As sad as the stories of Holocaust survivors can be, it is important that current generations as well as generations to come understand

Ms. Hoffman takes a picture and thanks the holocaust survivors for sharing their stories.

the severity of what occurred in Europe over 70 years ago so that it can be certain that genocides like the Holocaust never occur again. This presentation was an eyeopening shock of reality while informing of the horrors and tragedies such as the Holocaust, yet it was also an encouraging and inspirational experience. For those interested in learning more about this important time in history, the Holocaust Research class will be offered again next year. PHOTOS COURTESY OF WILLIAM LATSON

RivEr’s REsolution ChEck In

Lillian Zhang


Staff Reporter

Originating from the Babylonian tradition to earn favor from their gods, New Year’s resolutions have survived and evolved to become a part of today’s New Year practice. The turn of the year serves as a fresh start that encourages people everywhere to make a change in their life. Each year, as the clock strikes midnight, people begin on their journey of achieving a goal. Spanish River is home to a number of resolution-driven people. “A New Year’s resolution is meant to improve yourself,” freshman Beth German said. “My resolution is to get good grades for college and I plan to use flashcards to help me.” The majority of resolutions focus on breaking bad habits and doing well in school. “My New Year’s resolution was to not procrastinate on homework when I get home,” junior Alexandra Bidoli said. “I’ve kept it so far.” Other resolutions were formed to accomplish a personal goal.

- Start out with a buddy to help hold yourself accountable- this will be easier than keeping a

resolution on your own

- Keep your

resolutions simple and re-

“This year’s resolution is not to take myself too seriously,” said French teacher Kris Earle. “Often I have to remind myself to look around and be open to all the love and joy in my life. When I’m not experiencing it, it’s usually because I have fallen into the trap of taking myself too seriously.” Although there are people who enjoy partaking in the New Year’s practice and feel motivated by it, many others do not like holding themselves to a resolution.

“I have always been an action person so to wait for the New Year and think that starting something then because I made a resolution will work does not work for me,” Principal William Latson said. “If it is that important, why wait until the New Year to make a resolution? Be proactive and do it, as that is the only way for me.” Whether or not a person creates a New Year’s resolution or not, having a goal is important to motivate a person to take action.

alistic- if it is too difficult it will not stick

- Break up your goals for gradual


- Reward yourself for a job well done








the o.r. room: a broken system Noah Zylberberg Features Editor

The dreaded Opportunity Room has long since been a place where students with minor infractions go to spend their days. Rather than stay in class and study, students with excess tardies must sacrifice their learning and sit in a room all day. This seems pretty backwards. Why should students who are late to class be forced to miss even more? Some even argue that the Opportunity Room (OR) does not help with behavior issues, as many students are repeat offenders. OR is not universal, and other schools around the country have alternatives to help correct student behavior, many of which have worked successfully. Before getting into the alternatives, however, we need to understand why OR does not function the way it is supposed to. For many, it does not seem like a real punishment and for some students it even allows them to catch up on their work. This is a cause for concern because if students want to catch up on work, they can just use OR, even if it means missing valuable teaching time. Senior Jyair Clark thinks that OR is helpful for some, but is not necessarily the most effective form of punishment.

“If you’re way behind, you don’t have to get into a new class and get new assignments,” Clark said. Senior Emily Lancheros also argues that OR is ineffective. She believes that there is no fear associated with OR, and most of the time, the supervisors do not hold you accountable for your work. “When I went they let me go to my sixth period,” Lancheros said. “No one followed up and made sure I had to leave.” One alternative to OR is having a Saturday detention. This strategy was implemented in several high schools in New Jersey. There are many upsides to this, as students could get their weekend work done in one sitting. Also, unlike traditional in school suspension, students do not have to miss class to come in on Saturdays. It could also work well on the punishment side, as students typically do not want to spend their Saturday’s at school. “I’ve been at schools that have had Saturday school detention,” assistant principal Ira Sollod said. “The day was a four hour block, two hours of cleaning up and two hours of homework and it was great.” The biggest problem with a Saturday detention is transportation.

Some students live far away, and if there are no buses, the school cannot penalize a student for not being able to show up. Another potential solution to the OR problem would be a unique grade policy. If you get a certain amount of tardies, detentions or referrals, your grade would drop. This could really help incentivize students to not get in trouble, because if they did, their grade would be lowered. The more amounts of infractions, the lower a grade would become. Junior Cassidy Poerstel had this exact type of system back in her Pittsburgh high school. “If you have so many detentions that accumulate your grade would drop,” Poerstel said. “If you keep getting detentions after that grade drop, lets say you had an A, the next time it would go to a B and then C.” Both these systems have been proven to work for students across the country, whether in New Jersey or Pittsburgh. There is no doubt that alternatives to the current OR system could work better, but the question still remains: Will administration fix it, or just let it be?


Another One: Keys Check

your Credits! You need 24 credits to graduate.




Senior Success

ALL Obligations!

(i.e. textbooks, library fines, and food accounts) If Obligations are not paid off you cannot attend Prom (April 9th), Grad Bash (April 29th), or Project Grad (May 19th).


hours of community service required

Turn in your signed pink sheet to the main office.


graduation gown and cap from Herff Herff Jones will be on campus February 10th,


March 9th, and April 6th.



2.0 GPA




or higher










Girls’ lacrosse team ready to begin season Bradley Thomas Sports Editor

Lacrosse season is here, and that means sticks are seen all around campus. The team hopes to find their groove and improve this season. Their first game will be on February 8th and the girls are excited to begin this year on a high note. They are hoping for lots of support down the stretch as they hope to win the District competition after coming so close last year. “I’m most looking forward to beating some of our rival schools that have always been a challenge for us,” senior Co-Captain Julia Zukerberg said. Last year the team came away with victories against local rivals West Boca and American Heritage. “We’ve been training very hard since last year and we are ready to come out with the win.” In addition, Zukerberg set goals for herself as well. Her goal for this year is to be consistent by playing well in almost every game this year. Senior Co-Captain Mollie Kaplan is also excited for the season. “This season I am mostly looking forward to continuing the success we’ve had the past few seasons,” Kaplan said. Both captains are ready for the season and hope to lead the team by example. “The most exciting thing about being captain is being a role model

to some of the younger players and to have an influence on the team,” Zukerberg said. “I remember when I was a freshman, I always looked at the captains as leaders and I’m excited to get to fulfill that role. When I found out I was going to be captain I was very excited, especially since I’m cocaptains with one of my best friends. We’re both so excited for the season.” The team has worked hard to a more unified group. For team building the team attends the ropes courses at Florida Atlantic University. “It’s a great way for the team to bond and learn to work together” Kaplan said. Due to all of these enjoyable activities, the team feels more like a

family than just lacrosse players who happen to go to the same school. “Our team is very close, and by the end of the season, we’re like one huge family,” Zukerberg said. “Everyone gets along, enjoys each other’s company and are all very supportive of one another,” Coach Jarlyn Matthews returns to coach girls’ lacrosse at River for her fifth year, she is looking forward to working towards winning districts and continuing to build the family atmosphere that bring the girls together. She was a coach for four straight seasons before her maternity leave last year. Although she enjoyed the time home with her daughters, coaching is her passion, and the team

Kaplan looks for a passing lane on her way to the goal.

family called her back to continue to grow the girls’ lacrosse program this season. Her favorite thing about coaching is the time spent with the girls. “The girls make me smile, laugh, and mad at the same time. They make me want to be a better coach for them. They work hard for me and believe in me as their coach,” Matthews said. “We have fun every year but I am excited to finally have the chance to win districts this year with a great group of girls who worked hard already for me since August.” Under Coach Matthews’ focused guidance, the girls’ lacrosse team will work hard to win this season.

Zukerberg controls the ball on the attack. PHOTOS COURTESY OF JULIA ZUKERBERG

Congratulations to our Shark commits!

Remi Thele King University Volleyball

Charlie Sullivan Elon University Tennis

Cydney Benes Auburn University Equestrian

Mikaela Tribby Molloy College Softball

Eduardo Blochtein Georgetown University Golf

Cameron Weinberger Hannah Thrasher University of Florida North Carolina Wesleyan Baseball Volleyball PHOTO COURTESY OF PTSA




Former River athletes continue their greatness Ethan Weinstein Staff Reporter

yard touchdown pass during his sophomore year. Like Love, former River quarterback and kicker, Remy Hamilton, also decided to take his talents to the Big 10 conference. Hamilton chose to play at the University of Michigan after an impressive four years on River’s football team. During his senior year, Hamilton threw for 1,147 yards and 12 touchdowns. He also showed his versatility by rushing for 249 yards and 6 touchdowns. That same year Hamilton won the Sun- Sentinel Offensive Player of the Year. After graduating from River in 1992, Hamilton went on to have four record-breaking seasons in during his phenomenal career as a kicker at

Spanish River’s sports teams have flooded the Shark Pit with talent over the years. These talents constructed electrifying plays for the Sharks, attracting local and national attention from college and professional scouts. One River alumni that caught the attention of college football scouts was current Wisconsin wide receiver, Reggie Love Jr. Love was a star basketball player during his time at Spanish River, but it was not until his senior year that he picked up football. While on the football team he received attention from Boston College, Georgia State, Maryland, Wake Forest, and Wisconsin scouts. Love claims that this would not have happened if it was not for the coaching he received and the friends he made at Spanish River. “Football coach Matt Starr and basketball coach John Jones really took me under their wing and provided me with immense support and great advice that shaped me into a great athlete,” Love said. “But what I would have to say I miss the most about River is the passionate students and fans that would come out to watch us every game, no matter where it was.” After graduating from Spanish River in 2012, Love later enrolled in the University of Wisconsin on June 18th on a full athletic scholarship. He has had some great games as a Badger but his most notable game came against a nationally ranked Louisiana State team in which he caught a 45- Hamilton handing the ball off to a fellow Shark.

River gymnast shines

Kent Burkman Staff Reporter

work,” Chuchla said. Each year brings more challenging class loads and forces students to master how they balance school and extra-curriculars. Chuchla dedicates long hours to school and gymnastics, something many people have difficulty balancing. Ultimately, the juggling of activities in high school is nothing more than “practice” for balancing college life. “Gym has taught me that life is not easy,” Chuchla said. “You have to work for what you want. It requires strength, determination, and balance.” With hard work and dedication, students can achieve a perfect ten in life.

Every student has different hobbies and interests. When high school comes around, many students find keeping up with their hobby difficult with the large amount of work. Sophomore Madison Chuchla differs from most when it comes to juggling hobbies and school work. Chuchla trains at American Twisters and has been a competitive gymnast since she could walk. “I’ve been in it for as long as I can remember, about 13 years,” Chuchla said. Gymnastics is not a casual hobby for Chuchla. On average, she spends five to six days a week at the gym for roughly four hours each day. That adds up to 12 hour days before there is time for homework. With so much of her day taken up by school and gymnastics, Chuchla is left with very little time to be with her family. “My parents admire my hard work, but they do miss seeing me sometimes given how little time I spend around the house.” In addition to staying committed to gymnastics for 13 years, Chuchla has been able to balance a rigorous year round schedule and stay in the top five percent of the entire sophomore class. “It’s been hard at times to balance Chuchla shows off her ability on the balance both gym and grades but I’ve made it beam. PHOTO COURTESY OF MADISON CHUCHLA

Michigan. During his time at in Ann Arbor, Hamilton broke the school’s record for consecutive field goals made, single season points, and career field goals made. Hamilton also kicked a 47-yard field goal against the Wolverines’ rival, Notre Dame, to win the game in what most Michigan fans believe is the biggest play in school history. After an outstanding college career, Hamilton bounced around NFL practice squads, making it to one 53-man roster in his NFL career and that was with the Detroit Lions in 2005. After his shoddy NFL career Hamilton went on to the Arena Football League where he had one of the best careers of all time. Another former Spanish River athlete that

made it big was Danny Valencia. Valencia graduated from River in 2002 where he played shortstop for four years on the baseball team. While playing on the team Valencia was named South Florida SunSentinel All-County three straight years and Offensive Player of the Year twice, as a senior and a junior. Following his baseball career at the University of Miami, Valencia was drafted into the Minnesota Twins’ organization. It was in Minnesota that Valencia made his MLB debut in 2010 for the Twins. After playing for different organizations for a while, it was not until Valencia got traded to the Oakland Athletics in 2015 that his career took off. Valencia is now the starting 3rd baseman for one of the best teams in the MLB. Last season,he hit 18 home runs and batted in 66 in only 105 appearances. He is hoping to resign with the Athletics this off-season where he will try to use his Sharklike business skills to get the most out of his contract. Although he may be wearing yellow and green now, Valencia always remembers what he learned in his days wearing blue and silver. River’s sports teams have been producing star players since the beginning of school history and have not seemed to slow down. With even more athletes committing to division one schools this year, it is likely there will be River alumni in college and professional sports for years to come.


Water polo sinks competition Lily Choi

Staff Reporter Spanish River welcomed two new coaches to the Water Polo team this year: Tyler Costolo and Stefan Iricanin. The coaches have joined the team just in time for the season which started on January 19. Like all team sports, water polo requires some guidance and the newly appointed coaches are ready to step up to the task. Iricanin is the founder of the FAU Water Polo Club and plays on the team year-round. Just like many players at River, his passion for water polo developed in high school. “I have been playing the sport since I was a freshman in high school and been on varsity for all four years,” Iricanin said. “I’ve also practiced with the Serbian water polo team and the VK Partizan.” He was happy to start coaching River’s water polo team and states that the best thing about coaching is watching the players grow as individuals and as a team.

“I love our new coaches,” CoCaptain Michael Spiro said. “They’re going to be a major key in Spanish River having a successful season in the pool.” In addition, Iricanin hopes that the players have fun, are safe, learn how to play the game, and are able to execute drills taught during practice in games. The team is aiming for 5 practices per week, but will be doing at least 3. “Practice is always a lot of fun and a great learning experience for everyone new to the sport and even for our veteran players looking to master it,” Spiro said. By using the pool at Boca Raton High School, the team are able to train for their matches. Their next game is the Bobcat Invitational Water Polo Tournament at Boca High. Iricanin has high hopes for this upcoming season. “My plan for the team is to create champions,” Iricanin said. Support the water polo team at their next game on February 25-27.

The self-proclaimed “manimals” pose for a team photo.


SPORTS Sports injuries PLAGUE RIVER ATHLETES Justin Haber Sports Editor

You sit there waiting patiently then you finally get called up. You know it is your time, the crucial moment that can make or break your season. You go through the routine that you have done a thousand times. When it is over, you hold your breath and pray for the best. Finally, your doctor gives you the clearance, and you have been granted the permission to compete another season. All the anxiety that built up in the waiting room fades away as you leave the doctor’s office. You now have the chance to give it your all, and pray you get cleared again for next season. As a high school athlete, you need your doctor’s permission to compete. Whether it be high school or the pros, health and safety always comes first. According to the CDC, “Each year high school athletes account for two million injuries, they account for fifty thousand doctor visits thirty thousand high school students have to go to the hospital each year due to their severe injuries.” Even some of Spanish River’s best athletes, who have been playing in their respective sports for years, still have career halting injuries. Senior Varsity Soccer player Bryanna Wilbor is highly respected by her teammates for her skill and

endurance. Unfortunately, Wilbor will be out this season due to a tear in her ACL during an important game at the beginning of the Stoneman Douglas. This injury occurred when another player cut the ball in and hit the bottom of her leg while the top stayed still. Wilbor knew that she was hurt. She has been playing soccer longer than anybody else. Starting at age four, she proudly has over ten years of playing experience under her belt. She suffered from a severe injury and it will be difficult for her to overcome it and reach previous skill level. “It’s a fully torn ACL so if I would like to return to any rigorous physical activity I will have to get reconstructive surgery,” Wilbor said. Wilbor will have serious challenges to overcome in the next few months, but she is doing it for the love of her sport. “To return to my former skill level, it will require intense physical therapy, four times a week, including range of motion and strength training,” Wilbor said. “After surgery, I will be on crutches, for two to three weeks”. Senior Varsity Volleyball Captain Amanda Yaffa also has suffered an ACL injury during a school game while jumping for the ball. Yaffa knows that her injury could have been prevented and she hopes to be a more cautious athlete in the future “By simply not drifting while in the

air blocking, my injury could have been prevented,” Yaffa said. Yaffa has high hopes for the future along with advice for athletes in hopes they do not go down the same path. “I started physical therapy the day after my surgery, but I will not be able to play for six months,” Yaffa said. “I would tell all athletes now to make sure they are giving their all while playing and training, and to make sure they are having fun.” A non-contact sport can also have serious injuries. Senior and Cross Country Captain Sydney Lopez knows what it is like to try to reclaim ground lost to injury. Lopez had a hamstring injury that took away her Junior season, and hurt her team by taking away on of their best runners. To this day, Lopez knows how her injury changed her as an athlete. “Being injured has taught me that taking care of yourself outside of practice is just as important as what you do in practice,” Lopez said. ”Physical therapy consists of minor exercises that you would think would be easy, but instead leave you out of breath and exhausted”. Athletic trainer Carrie Pustilnik knows that it is not easy to recover from an injury. “In order for an athlete to regain his/ her form, I believe the most important trait is will or determination,” Pustilnik said. “After that the second step would



be to increase strength and agility.” There is no sure way to prevent injury, no matter how hard you try. Along the way everyone encounters challenges, but by overcoming these challenges the reward of success is even more worthwhile.