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blueprint Hagerty High School

Vol. 17, Issue 2

November 18, 2021

Oviedo, Florida

SWITCH IT UP Football players and cheerleaders took the field for the powderpuff game during homecoming week. The senior girls won the game 17-7. Full homecoming week coverage on 8-9. photo by Shannon Hahn

the husky boutique PTSA created the Husky Haute Boutique in order for all students to have access to formal attire.

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military brats

Several people on campus have attended military school, and they found schools on military bases often had higher academic rigor and a stronger sense of community. page 13

starting off strong Girls weightlifting starts their season with a 1-1 record after a win against Lake Howell and a loss to Winter Springs.

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Student Ambassadors get back to work most of the club’s activities were canceled due Lifestyles Editor to COVID-19, and holding lunches in enclosed spaces went against many of the school’s fter a year-long hiatus, clubs across “So many of us have experienced a kind of campus have been ready for an ostracization during the pandemic, so there’s enthusiastic return, and the student more of a heart for our club now,” Yonker said. ambassadors were no exception. On Oct. 11, the Like other clubs, the student ambassadors club resumed their usual celebrations, including program had to adjust to a period of dormancy a Halloween Hangout. last year. However, by advertising the club Held Oct. 22, the student ambassadors to students and parents through the PTSA attended the event after school outside Facebook page, they gained over 30 new the cafeteria. Members and new students members. participated in a pumpkin-decorating contest “My friend had posted about the student and enjoyed Halloweenambassadors on her Instagram, themed cookies, candy and “So many of us have and she sent me the information snacks. The winner of the sign up,” fundraiser coach experienced a kind to contest would receive a $10 Anna Romagera said. “There Jeremiah’s gift card. wasn’t any paperwork to fill of ostracization “Some of our ambassadors out and it was really easy to during the came up with a Halloween join.” inspired event,” sophomore pandemic, so there’s Because many freshmen Ella Vescio said. “This event and sophomores attended was organized to introduce more of a heart for school virtually the previous students to new people year, finding a place on campus our club now.” and create a welcoming can be especially challenging. Hallie Yonker, 12 The student ambassadors environment in Hagerty’s campus.” program feels that their The club also began holding monthly initiative is more vital than ever in the midst of lunches in the group projects room during first a disconnected student body. and second lunch. Their first lunch of the year “Because of the quarantine, there are a lot of was held Sept. 13 and their most recent was students who this is their first time on campus, held Nov. 8, and was advertised via the club’s whether they are freshmen or sophomores who Instagram page. were online last year,” Yonker said. “We’re just “The purpose of the lunch is generally trying to help everyone find their spot.” the same as our club, which is to reach out to Yonker expects that the recently created students,” vice president Hallie Yonker said. student ambassadors’ Instagram page will “Not only new students but also students that make engaging with students significantly might not have a place to sit at lunch.” easier. Their Instagram page has racked up 51 The student ambassadors had just resumed followers, and club members use both their hosting lunches that had been a monthly Instagram and Facebook to inform both parents occurrence excluding last year, during which and students about upcoming events.

Sophia Canabal


SEASONAL SOCIAL Student ambassadors decorate pumpkins during the Halloween Hangout, hosted by the Student Ambassadors, who recently experienced a surge of new members at the start of the 2021 school year. photo by Alexis Izaguirre

“Before, we had to go through PTSA to get things approved because they’re our umbrella organization, but now we’ll be able to post things directly from the students ourselves,” Yonker said. The Student Ambassadors have already planned a number of other events for the

remainder of the year, including a study hall. “The study hall is to give some students the chance to build relationships and meet friends in similar classes to do homework,” Romagera said. “And decorating pumpkins from the pumpkin patch was a fun activity for both new and returning students too.”

best performances,” senior Marlie Tollefson said. “We strive to be our best whether we are competing or not. For us, we are always on our toes, every new run of something is better than the last.” The last festival, held in 2019, was also at Hagerty, as schools host for two consecutive years. After a year without the festival, both sophomore and freshmen members were new to this event. “This was my first time being part of the festival and this was one of the best times we performed as a whole,” sophomore Arielle Medina said. “We treated the festival like any game so we could play our best.” Although two classes were new to the event, juniors and seniors had experience in the festival preceding COVID-19. With the return of the festival, the upperclassmen were able to bond with each other and other schools. “My favorite part about the festival being back is that we get to see the other bands and people,” Tollefson said. “To see others doing well and playing a similar instrument to you brings happiness and an almost warm feeling.” As the band reached the end of their marching season, directors and members were able to see progress made in the execution of their show and how their hard work has paid off. “I feel great about the festival being back. I’m disappointed it’s my last year, but it is a great feeling and one of the best parts of marching band,” Tollefson said. “There is always a bit of stress in the process, but at the end of the night, everyone had a great time.

After the band finished their performance at the festival they immediately had a new goal, the MPA. The music performance assessment, or MPA, was hosted at Lake Brantley high school on Oct. 30, also making its return after two years. Continuing the band’s streak of wellplayed performances, the group scored straight superiors in the categories of music, marching and individual judges’ scores. “I was very excited for them because I know they worked really hard,” Kuperman said. “It was a really good feeling to get back to our first one and have the band get the highest ratings possible.” The MPA not only allowed the band to show their improvement in music ability, but it also gave them the opportunity to see the progress they made on the visual aspects of their performance. “I thought that a lot of the balance issues we had were fixed, and we were doing very well with the music’s timing,” Kuperman said. “A lot of the forms that we worked on were looking a lot better, and then afterwards we got to see the drone footage, which confirmed that a lot of the visual parts that we worked on were improved.” Now that the marching season has come to a close, the band not only showed their quick improvements to Seminole County or MPA judges, but also to themselves. “This is probably some of the biggest improvements that we’ve had because a lot of people were home last year,” Kuperman said. “From beginning to end, we probably made the biggest improvements since I’ve been here.”

Busy marching band season comes to a close Nadia Knoblauch


A STRONG PERFORMANCE Sophomore Teege Isla takes part in the band’s performance at Winter Springs High School of the Queen halftime show. photo by Makenna Blonshine

Staff Reporter

very Friday, the band performs for spectators at the football game’s halftime, but on Saturday, Oct. 16, the music was the main event. Hosted in the Sam Momary Stadium, the Seminole County Marching Band Festival made its return after two years, bringing together all bands in Seminole County to present their shows for the season. This festival highlights the marching bands of all high schools in the county. Starting at 5:30 p.m., the marching groups came together to play “The Star-Spangled Banner.” “Each band arrived early in the day to do a short rehearsal for the national anthem,” band director Brian Kuperman said. “Afterwards, there was a dinner break when the students from each school could meet and hang out with one another.” With the return of the festival, directors were given the opportunity for extra practice and polishing as the statewide music performance assessment swiftly approached. “This was the most solid performance of the show this year,” Kuperman said. “We still had some refining to do, but the band was in a good spot for their MPA.” With more opportunities for improvement, band members were able to recognize the amount of progress made throughout the marching season. “I think the band performed really well. To be honest, it might have been one of our



Art Honor Society expands mural project Club repurposes empty spaces on school walls by painting murals for classrooms Joshua Krob


Staff Reporter

viedo has no shortage of beautiful local art, from elaborate paintings in Artistic Hand Gallery & Studio to the detailed mural in Round Lake Park. Among the growing number of attractions that can be seen all over Oviedo, many great pieces catch eyes. However, the National Art Honors Society has created on-campus projects to rival those in the community. While walking around campus, students are likely to see at least one of the multiple NAHS murals, located in PLATO instructor Mike Sindone’s room, above the chorus room, and in the cafeteria. Art is not just limited to these three locations: there are also several planned art exhibits outside of art teacher Omar Otero and theater teacher Jamaal Solomon’s classrooms. The existing murals are all different artistic takes on huskies, with the only exception being the large mural in the lunchroom, which displays “Class of 2021” in a calligraphy style. NAHS meets every other week for an hour in Otero’s room, 7-102. The next meeting will take place after Thanksgiving break. Students are able to work on their projects at meetings, which only take place once a month for two

A NEW LOOK The National Art Honor Society has several murals throughout campus, including one in the PLATO lab, 2-110. Students hand-painted the murals, which generally feature a husky theme, that can be found in different classrooms and labs. photo by Alexis Madlang

hours. Students make the most of their time at these meetings, honing their art skills by participating in group painting projects. For freshman Dylani Weerackoon, the small details are very important in his projects. “I’ve definitely focused on making things more neat and orderly. Especially when you’re painting on the wall, you want stuff to look really sharp and clean. Sometimes that means you put extra time into what you’re working on,

but that’s worth it,” Weerackoon said. The mural painting process begins with a preplan, when students bounce ideas off of one another and decide what they want to work on. They then move on to a small drawing of the planned mural, getting it checked by the teacher who requested it before they ever touch a school wall. After a careful checking process to make sure the drawing and painting match, the mural

is ready for display. “We draw [a rough draft] out, and then we discuss the ideas,” Otero said. “The entire thing really brings out the best ideas in people.” Otero gives NAHS students freedom to create what they want for murals around campus, as long as it pleases the customer. “I don’t want to come up with the idea because I want it to be a ‘them’ thing,” Otero said.

said. “The lunch session was also super cool since we got to talk to other schools about their yearbooks and newspapers and how they were handling all the changes this year.” Each student signed up for three sessions at the Friday workshop, and Wilkerson favored sessions that pertained to her publication. Wilkerson’s personal favorite session was “What’s the Extra Mile: From Good to Great” because the organizer of the session was able to give good advice on how to overcome the struggles of being on yearbook staff. Before sessions began, the day started off with award announcements, which Hagerty dominated, winning six of the eight awards. Last year, all the FSPA awards were only announced online, so being there to win in person was a big improvement.

“Being able to hear about the wins in person is just so different and so much more exciting than it is over a computer,” BluePrint online editor Skyler Glenn said. “It’s just an awesome feeling to know that we’re doing a good job and I was really happy to hear that some of our first year staffers were winning awards.” Glenn taught a session with editor-in-chief Jaye Herrera called “The Editing Process,” in which they gave an overview of the editing process a good publication should have. “It’s been a learning process for us so it wasn’t easy to come up with,” Glenn said. “We did the session to help other schools figure out how to do an editing process, because that’s definitely one of the most difficult things to figure out.” On top of that, newspaper and yearbook

adviser Brit Taylor taught a session called “Get in my Face,” which focused on strategies for face-to-face interviews after a year of interviews by email and social media. Despite having a successful first FSPA in-person workshop after two years of being virtual, the turnout was limited by Daytona State College rules that allowed a maximum of 12 students per school, and the maximum number of people in a session room to 13. “I think the atmosphere wasn’t quite like it’s been in the past because we’ve had 300 to 400 people where we have a big auditorium with a keynote speaker,” Taylor said. “We’re not there yet, but I think for what this year is and the limitations we have, it was pretty good, in terms of having enough space and being able to spread out.”

Journalism students attend district workshop Zahra Ateeq


Staff Reporter

n a Daytona State College classroom on a Friday morning, students learned how to “Adapt Like a Pro” from Oviedo adviser Ben Langevin, who discussed podcasts and musicals in a 50-minute session. This and other sessions took place at the Florida Scholastic Press Association in a workshop on Friday, Oct. 29. Schools from Seminole, Volusia, Polk and Brevard counties participated— leading to a turnout of 91 students. This was the first in-person FSPA workshop since 2019, and many students were excited to be back in person. “Being in person felt more real and personal,” yearbook editor Sarena Wilkerson

+1 (407) 893-0016 RGUISEROOTS@GMAIL.COM





upcoming events


nov 30 dec 3 dec 9

DRESS PTSA creates Haute Husky Boutique for all students to have access to formal attire

Nadia Knoblauch


Staff Reporter

arty dresses, suits and three-inch heels make up the shopping lists for many high schoolers every homecoming season. However, none of these items come in every size, or can be found in every store at a low price. In order to allow more students access to formal attire and combat the high prices of chain departments, the Hagerty PTSA opened the Haute Husky Boutique. The boutique, which opened in October, was created by the PTSA to give students an affordable and convenient space to look and shop for formal attire. Fully supplied by donations from staff and businesses, everything in the boutique is free, allowing students with lower budgets to pick out clothing for formal events, such as homecoming. “Our PTSA, which is a really really strong group on our campus, noticed other schools had something similar and wanted to serve the Hagerty community with that too,” assistant principal Kristi Draus said. Draus, who is new to campus this school year, worked with the PTSA to make the boutique possible, including getting donations and finding available space for people to shop. In order to stop by the boutique, which is set up in a previous PTSA closet in the lunchroom, students have to contact Draus or their guidance counselor to establish an appointment during or after school to give students more privacy. “Sometimes if a family is in need, they don’t necessarily want everyone to know,” Draus said. “So one of the things that we really thought about was making it private, because honestly, I would love for the PTSA members to see the joy when a student finds a dress, but we also didn’t necessarily want people to not want to be a part of it because maybe they were uncomfortable.”

Although the items available at the boutique were advertised for school events like homecoming and prom, the shop is available all year to fill students’ needs. “I plan to just kind of keep it open all year because maybe a student has a quinceañera and they need a formal dress and they don’t have the means to do that; we want to be able to provide that,” Draus said. “So while we’re advertising it for homecoming or prom, if a student is in need of something in general and we have it, we want to be able to serve and provide that so it’s available all the time.” To give students a fun and more “normal’’ experience, the boutique was set up like a dressing room with racks of clothes and a long mirror. Students could also bring friends and family to help them select and look at the clothing options. “A couple of people have brought their friends so they kind of get that shopping experience,” Draus said. “I actually have some parents who are coming since, you know, sometimes as a mom you want to be there to help your daughter pick out her dress, so we still want to provide that experience as well.” While the boutique was aimed to help families in need, many students shopped there due to a lack of size and style options in other stores. “I went to the boutique because I found it more convenient and it had a lot of options,” Jane Doe* said. “We had looked online and couldn’t find dresses that could be delivered on time and all the dresses we saw in stores didn’t fit well and they had very few options to choose from.” As the homecoming hype came to a close, the boutique saw success with students, families and faculty, giving more students the opportunity to attend formal events. “I can tell you we’ve already had some students use it and they’ve been super excited,” Draus said. “They’re not just taking a dress, they’re getting something really beautiful and they feel good in it.” *name change was requested for privacy

dec 10

Winter EOC retakes begin

Biology, Geometry, Algebra 1, and US History exam retakes are set to be administered starting Nov. 30, which are required in order to earn a Scholar’s Diploma.

Band performs ‘Rhapsody in Blue’

Band will perform in the auditorium, during which the concert band, symphonic band, jazz band, wind ensemble and instrument ensembles will each perform their own holiday-themed piece.

Chorus presents winter concert

Chorus will host the 2021 winter concert at 7 p.m. in the auditorium. They will start meeting after school in the auditorium on Nov. 30 from 2:30-5:00 p.m. to rehearse holiday-themed songs for the performance.

Hagerty hosts Winter Dance Show

The dance department will host the annual winter dance show in the auditorium at 7 p.m. The dance team will rehearse for the performance at 2:30 p.m. on the same day, followed by a team dinner.

news briefs JROTC holds quarterly blood drive

On Nov. 9, JROTC held their second quarterly blood drive outside the auditorium. The event lasted five hours, starting at 8 a.m. and ending at 1:30 p.m. The blood drive was sponsored by OneBlood and administered by members of JROTC. Fifty students signed up to donate, getting their blood pressure, temperature, and iron count measured in order to make sure they were qualified to donate. JROTC expects their next blood drive to occur sometime within mid-December.

SGA provides homecoming cleanup

The student government allowed volunteers to clean up campus after the homecoming dance ended. Picking up trash and reorganizing cafeteria tables took only 20 minutes, and 40 underclassmen attended. Leadership allocated funding for each class’s senior homecoming depending on how many participants stayed to clean up. “I personally think it was worth staying the extra 10 minutes because I would prefer to come back on Monday to a clean school and not a trashed place,” SGA freshman secretary Ariana Maboudu said.

Best Buddies hosts Trunk or Treat

Skeleton crafts, yard games, spooky trunks and lots of candy filled the school parking lot on Friday, Oct. 22. Organized by the Best Buddies club, the third annual Trunk or Treat was held from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Trunk or Treat gave club members the opportunity to bond with each other as they walked from car to car, played different games, and collected buckets of treats. “Our favorite part of Trunk or Treat is just being with each other and being able to have fun together,” Arp said. “That’s really what it’s all about.”



OUR TAKE The BluePrint staff editorial

Mental health requires focus, reform


itting in English class, you are prepared for a normal day of iambic pentameter and poetry analysis when you are instead asked to pull out your phone, open Nearpod, and enter the classroom code. You sigh. Another mental health day. For the past three years, as required by the state, student services have ramped up their efforts to spread mental health awareness and provide resources for students who may be struggling with various mental or emotional issues. Actions such as the hiring of licensed mental counselor James Bartlett encourages those who need assistance to get help, and the promotion of afterschool activities provide an excellent source of stress relief. The most notable example of the growing focus on mental health, however in the statemandated courses on mental health. Taking up 15 minutes in various periods, the mental health Nearpods are a poor choice mandated by the state. Expecting students to sit through uninteresting lectures is ineffective, as the majority only pretend to listen while they click through on their phone. The difficult balance of getting the proper information out and having meaningful discussions is one that Principal Robert Frasca has acknowledged, as he points out both the positives and negatives of the state-mandated lessons. “The good side of the Nearpods is that a lot of that is already prescribed for teachers to be able to get the information to students because I think the information is important. The downside to it is I don’t think there is a lot of discussion,” Frasca said. Decreased focus on homework could be another mental health solution. While we may sound like we are trying to get out of work, the homework-based education method is stifling and mentally exhausting. Giving teenagers more time to spend on extracurriculars, socialization or exercise would encourage students to be more engaged when on campus. Finland, ranked third in global education as of 2021 according to the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report, maintains a homework-minimal education style that encourages students to get more sleep. Finnish students, with the aid of extra sleep, are more likely to enjoy school and score higher on tests than most other countries. Considering the staff work closely with minors, it is vital they have an understanding of their stress and headspace. Teachers should be required to go through some sort of mental health training before taking up their job, with yearly or biyearly sessions to continue their education. With regular review taught by professionals, not Nearpods, they may have a better understanding of how to approach sensitive mental health topics. Additionally, having a larger understanding of mental health and positive mindsets will help them improve their own outlook as well. The progress the state has made in mental health support is admirable, but does not excuse their lack of success in mental health education. To properly support their students and staff alike, reforms must be made.

Illustration by Alexis Madlang


blueprint Hagerty High School 3225 Lockwood Blvd. Oviedo, FL 32765 Phone: (407) 871-0750 Fax: (407) 871-0817

Swipe left on virtual dating Skyler Glenn


Online Editor

taying up until 3 a.m. on FaceTime. Sending and receiving sweet Snapchats throughout the day. Shipping handcrafted care packages across the country. Your boyfriend, whom you met on Yubo, is a dream come true. Your relationship is a fairytale. He must be the one, right? Probably not. Through a simple follow and direct message, teenage social media users feel they have the ability to form meaningful romantic relationships, no matter the possible dangers. Many have become far too comfortable with these apps, and this comfort will inevitably bring rough consequences. One of the biggest concerns related to online dating is the power it has over one’s emotions. Normal relationships flourish when you get to know your partner on a deeper, more personal level. Those who struggle to open up may find it easy to confide in someone they do not know, but that does not mean it is a smart idea. The second someone hits the block button, emotional support can be lost, resulting in trust and abandonment issues. An internet mutual is not worth the potential pain and unrest their absence can cause. Becoming absorbed in a fantastical virtual relationship is unhealthy and a waste of time. The common helicopter-mom principle of “do not believe everything you see on the internet” applies to people, too; do not believe that they are who they claim to be. The web is littered with predators and groomers – people who build relationships with children in order to exploit them. Grooming is one of those concepts that people casually shrug off – “it would never happen to me” – but the reality is that more than 200,000 minors have been groomed on the internet, according to the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children. This number only accounts for those who were able to identify and report the abuse, but many grooming victims do not realize what is happening to them or do not report it. Often, the emotional dialect that groomers use seems genuine, making it hard to tell if what’s happening is grooming. It happens far too often to be ignored, and amplifies the risks of virtual dating. Seemingly harmless apps like Discord and Yubo have turned into a cesspool for virtual

The BluePrint is a student-produced newspaper in which the student editors make all content decisions. The newspaper belongs to the Columbia Scholastic Press Association, the National Scholastic Press Association and the Florida Scholastic Press Association. Opinions expressed within the newspaper do not represent the staff ’s views as a whole (except for Our Take), the views of Seminole County Public Schools or Hagerty High’s administration and staff. For information about advertising in the paper, please contact us via e-mail or phone. We reserve the right to reject any advertisement.

dating. Yubo’s catchphrase is “Meet new friends,” despite it being a carbon copy of Tinder, allowing users to swipe left and right, share their location and display multiple photos. Both of these apps recommend that its users be over the age of 17, but do nothing to enforce it, allowing kids to be exposed to strangers and explicit material. It is almost as if the entire social media world has watered down to a poorly developed online dating platform. While part of the problem does lay in the hands of users, the platforms themselves cannot be disregarded. Loving and trusting a mere profile picture is a risky game, as even the kindest people could have sour intentions. “They seem nice” or “they are normal, I swear” are terrible excuses that do not justify dating an internet creep. Nine out of 10 times, the people in the relationship know it is weird, but make excuses for it. Stranger danger does not stop when someone is funny or attractive. Your “Discord kitten” is a 30-yearold furry. Move on. Not only could online dating lead to emotional grooming, but it could lead to an even darker instance: physical grooming. Though online relationships may be centered around a phone, that does not stop physicality. A number of these couples depend on apps like Snapchat to send nude photos and videos, which is not only extremely irresponsible, but dangerous. Thousands of nudes are leaked each year, and the consequences of one nude photo can last Illustration by Abigail Neal forever. The Journal of the American Medical Association found that one in seven teenagers admit to sexting. Again – it is not worth it. Risking a successful future to satisfy your virtual partner’s sexual needs is not only naive, but it is genuinely sad. Nobody should feel like they have to expose themselves to be accepted. Seeking validation from an internet stranger may reveal some deeper, more complex problems. Instead of exploiting yourself, spend time on self-care. Turn the camera off. You are beautiful, and you do not need @robloxboy123 to tell you so. To solve the obvious issues with online dating, social media users need to interact with others more responsibly, while platforms need to work harder to protect its young populations and maintain a degree of purity. There are no benefits to exposing yourself to someone you met on Instagram. There is no bright side to an underage Tinder. There are simply too many risks for teens to try online dating.

Editor-in-Chief Gabriella Jaye Herrera

Sports Editor Karson Cuozzo

Print Editor Alexis Madlang

Opinions Editor Julia Sumpter

Online Editor Skyler Glenn

Social Media Editor Zahra Ateeq

News Editor Janell Lim

Adviser Brit Taylor

Lifestyles Editor Sophia Canabal

Principal Robert Frasca

Staff Reporters Greta Carrasco Reagan Eastlick Nadia Knoblauch Joshua Krob Emily McCluskey Angelica Mendez Ava West



Bananas, boondoggles, and bad economic policy

Reagan Eastlick Staff Reporter, From the Right I want you to take a moment and imagine the life of a singular banana. Fun fact: most bananas are imported into the US, about 6.4 billion pounds per year. Before you peel that banana, it has to cross the sea, hopping aboard a gigantic container ship, traveling from one port in South America to another in the US. After the ship docks, the banana patiently waits to be unloaded by one of thousands of port workers. Its waiting time over, it is loaded onto a train or truck, where over the course of several days it is delivered to a central distribution center. From there, it is once again loaded onto a vehicle and arrives at your local store, or shop or school. The life of a banana breathes life into a multi-billion dollar shipping industry, feeding thousands of workers in two separate continents. Now imagine huge swaths of that industry missing, and instead of just bananas disappearing, it’s toilet paper and bicycles, cutlery and towels. Stop imagining: it’s here. There are hundreds of ships waiting to unload their cargo in the appx. 360 ports in the United States, culminating in a colossal supply chain crisis.

From longshoremen to truck drivers, the transit economy is missing laborers. I use the word laborer on purpose: working at a port or driving a truck for long hours is tedious and difficult, oftentimes “unskilled” work. In fewer words, people don’t always want to work hard jobs, especially when easier alternatives exist. The stimulus checks sent out by the federal government became the easier option. The huge amount of money pumped into the US (40% of all currency was printed in the last 12 months) got people used to more money in their pocket. This leads to inflation: businesses recognize that there is more money in the market, and they increase their prices. Eventually “real wages,” meaning how much you can actually buy with the money you earn, decrease and everything costs more than it did before. In this case, it’s not just prices rising, it’s also workers’ expectations of what they deserve. In relatively low paying, physically demanding jobs (like many associated with the supply chain), workers’ unions are demanding more for less. When employers can’t meet demands, workers leave. Shoving money into the economy is what broke it. It’s not just money. Vaccine mandates scare off employees, and those involved in transportation are not exempt. Americans,


Supply Chain Crisis

emerging from their COVID-haze, are buying goods at an extraordinarily high rate, adding stress to an already understaffed transit-economy. To top it all off, Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg took the last two months off from work for paternity leave, leaving the supply chain crisis to fester without any central policy. If the federal government wants port workers to get back to their jobs, they need to do a couple things. First, they need to remove all economic stimulus packages from circulation. Second, they need to eliminate vaccine mandates; the US needs all the workers they can get, and vaccination status should be a personal choice regardless. Finally, the federal government needs to let private businesses make money. Every business will act in its own best interest. If there is a huge demand for transportation services, our market will eventually fill that demand, and the situation will resolve itself. It’s worth remembering that every banana you’ve ever eaten wasn’t produced by the government. It was produced by hardworking men and women seeking a profit. Trust people to work in their own best interest and the supply chain crisis will fix itself.


Henry Ford and labor unions; saving the supply chain

Joshua Nemory

Guest, From the Left “And if you don’t love me now, You will never love me again, I can still hear you saying, You would never break the chain.” The supply chain crisis almost invariably evokes Fleetwood Mac’s “The Chain.” Perhaps a song about perseverance through lost love will get the country back on track. There have not been enough workers to fuel the supply chain. The labor force participation rate, or the percentage of the working-age population that is either employed or actively looking for work, is down by two percentage points since the beginning of the pandemic. (4.6 million workers). Why? Wages are not attractive enough for people to potentially expose themselves to COVID-19, especially in shipping warehouses or manufacturing facilities, where work is back-breaking. Workers are the power behind the supply chain. A study from University of

barking mad

California, San Francisco this February found that being a packaging and filling machine operator was the second most fatal job to have during the pandemic. Refusing to work for little pay is practical, not lazy. If employers want staff, they must pay them. Harvard researcher Emma Harrington found “raising wages by $1 increases productivity by more than $1, giving the firm an incentive to pay more.” She also found higher wages decrease turnover, which suggests businesses can find and keep employees if they have higher wages. With an increase in workers in transit industries, the supply chain can be rebuilt. Over 10,000 John Deere workers went on strike in October. Michael Sainato of The Guardian reports that “workers have been forced to work overtime consistently,” and a proposed labor contract includes “cuts to post-retirement healthcare, inadequate wage increases and inadequate pension benefits.” All the while, the company has recorded record profits. No sane person could blame the workers

“The lunch line is too long and not fast enough. Too many kids cut in line.” - Grant Smith, 10

for refusing to tolerate this, besides John Deere CEO John May, whose salary has increased by 160% since the onset of the pandemic. If companies like John Deere continue to ignore the demands of the worker, more strikes will happen, incapacitating American manufacturing and the supply chain. So far, 1,400 Kellogg’s workers have joined the John Deere strikers in “striketober.” Overall, there have been 40 recorded strikes in October alone, finds Cornell University’s tracker. “Striketober” should spook companies into raising pay. Now what does this folly have to do with Fleetwood Mac? Well, it is all about love. Workers are not lazy for avoiding hazardous working conditions, nor are they greedy for wanting to be paid more. They just want to look after their families. What this pandemic should teach us is compassion. If higher wages come at the cost of lower incomes for the wealthiest among us, so be it. If better treatment of workers bucks the status quo, so be it. If we do not listen to workers, we will never break the chain.

“The bees at lunch, they are literally attacking me every day.” - Lana Mutawe, 10

Fired Up!

Astroworld stampede indicative of larger problem Gabriella Jaye Herrera

The Nov. 5 “Astroworld” music festival in Houston, Texas, headlined by rapper Travis Scott, was the site of 10 deaths and over 300 injuries as 50,000 attendees flooded the tight area around the stage. While this might just seem like a tragic riot caused by overzealous fanatics, the real source of the chaos lies within Travis Scott himself. As the influence of celebrities and public figures increases with social media, even their most casual tweets have far more weight than they did before. Impressionable young people cling to artists as role models, and listen to their terrible advice. Before the AstroWorld festival, Travis Scott had regularly encouraged his fans to defy event coordinators and rush the stage. After the release of his 2015 major-label debut album, he encouraged the crowd to put their “middle finger up to security” and to “rage” by moshing and body surfing. Only after the crowd was in chaos did he bother to tell them to back up. In a 2017 event, Scott incited fans in second and third floor balconies to jump, promising they would be caught. As idiotic as it sounds, a few followed their idol’s commands, jumping or being pushed off their balconies and breaking their legs. One fan, who fell from the third floor, was permanently paralyzed. And yet again, in 2019, three people were hospitalized as fans forced their way through barricades to get into the festival, thanks to the organizers not planning “sufficiently for the large crowds,” as tweeted by the Houston police. Given that Scott himself is behind the AstroWorld event, he is the primary culprit to blame. Despite the pattern, Scott clearly has not learned his lesson about the importance of crowd control and temperament. Instead, he continued to encourage his fan base to blatantly disrespect Astroworld’s organizers, egging them into sneaking in by tweeting “we still sneaking the wild ones in.” While those rushing the stage can’t put all the blame on Scott, there needs to be more accountability for the way artists like Scott encourage their fan base to engage in reckless actions and rebellious destruction. In the future, events like AstroWorld need to have more actual organizers capable of managing a crowd, not yes-men giving Scott his way until another ten people die.

“I’m not allowed to eat lunch in my car.” - Kaitlyn Malantonio, 12

“Dress code is super sexist, guys can “The bathroom doors in building 2 don’t “The two bodyguards at the front of the show their shoulders but girls can’t.” lock.” school. They’re so mean.” - Emely Torres, 11 - Ella Vescio, 10 - Alexane Ayup, 11 “I hate how the school has no mirrors in the bathroom, they’re like sheets of “Kids are always standing in the “The lunch line is always too long - it hallways.” takes forever and blocks the entire side metal.” - Kimberlyee Clark, 11 of the cafeteria.” - Savannah Nguyen-Meyer, 10 - Hallie Yonker, 12 “School starts too early, and the rooms “The elevators give me a heart attack. Barking Mad is a collection of short The sound they make, it makes me feel are either too cold or too warm.” “Everyone just leaves their trash after submissions about things that tick like it’ll break down.” - Valentina Fernandez, 9 lunch.” students off around school. If something - Minette Andl, 9 - Jorge Tirado, 10 at school makes you mad, e-mail us at and it may be featured here.

“Teachers expect us to have nothing better to do than homework.” - Matteos Ariosa, 9 “Toilets don’t flush and the stall doors never close.” - Jessica Sekunna, 9 “The freshmen take up all the lunch tables.” - Alexandro Madruga, 10 “Driving in the parking lot can be scary because no one pays attention.” - Gwenivere Shaw, 11 “Parking passes are oversold in the yellow lot.” - Tyler Johannes, 12



What we need to learn in high school

EXPECTATION VS REALITY High school should be preparing students for the next step in their lives, but some feel they are missing out on learning important information. A solution to this problem is making a required course that combines all of the confusing curriculum into one class. illustration by Alexis Madlang

Alexis Madlang


Print Editor

cing AP exams, speaking and writing in other languages, constructing beautiful essays, painting and sculpting masterpieces – during high school, students learn a multitude of skills. However, due to the increasingly competitive nature of college and the workforce, high school curriculum has focused more and more on strong academics. Although strong academics are crucial, students are not taught enough skills necessary for the real world. If high school is about preparing students for their next step in life, why do students still feel unprepared?

Without the guidance and help from family members, most students would lack important information in subjects like college admissions, sex education or home ownership. A solution to reduce the number of students that lack confidence in these areas: a graduation-required course covering topics like this in-depth. In 2003, Florida Statutes required completion of a minimum of 24 academic credits in grades 9-12 to earn a standard high school diploma, including one-half credit in Life Management Skills. This course was broken down into sections covering health in the first semester, then general skills such as financial literacy and home care in the second semester.

Let me pee in peace Greta Carrasco


Staff Reporter

oing to the bathroom in the comfort of your home is paradise in itself; being able to do your business with no pressure or distractions, just you and the toilet. That’s when reality hits - you are bombarded with a repugnant odor of fruits and urine and a crowd of girls spilling the latest gossip. Waiting in the painfully long line was bad enough, but now you find yourself stuck in an enclosed space, claustrophobic and vulnerable, waiting for the chaos to end. Many elements contribute to the unstable environment school restrooms hold, but the worst of them all is the people. There are three types of restroom regulars: those who gather in the bathrooms to exchange gossip, those who make the bathroom their personal vape café, and those who are too excited to be part of a devious lick. Listening to gossip is entertaining every once in a while, but when it is constant and inappropriately-timed, it becomes very irritating. The worst part is when that chatting group blocks all access to stalls, sinks, and towels. These walking gossipers only seem to know how to use their mouths, while their legs are apparently incapable of moving themselves out of the way and finding a different place to

talk about their most recent breakup. Things get worse as the already repulsive smell of urine and feces gets added to the smell of artificial berries and nicotine. We cannot all enjoy tranquility, but perhaps try to send that fruity smoke somewhere else. Sure, you want to look “cool” or “mysterious,” it is only normal for teenagers to have these strange desires, but you will only look like a stoner, deteriorating both physical and mental health, and annoying those around you. There is no reason to walk in and find a sink demolished in front of you, trash cans on top of stalls, and soap dispensers no longer available. The devious lick trend was never that funny. It did nothing but deprive schools of resources and give students nightmares when they realized there is no more toilet paper to clean themselves with. Students would have to be looking forward to a hefty fine and serious consequences that could damage not only their school records but also criminal ones. Apart from stealing, the lack of hygiene and incredible damage that was done to the bathrooms is astonishing. Bathrooms no longer function properly which hurts those who actually need to go. Floors filled with trash, hair, and a liquid you hope is not pee, distorted mirrors and a door that will not close. This unfortunately is a problem we created for ourselves by destroying these bathrooms via vandalism, sneakiness and

Between 2006 and 2007, the Seminole County School Board voted to remove the course, both as a graduation requirement and as a class itself. With this, some of these topics were integrated into other courses such as the sex education section covered in Biology. Although students still get exposure to these topics, they are very briefly covered and seemingly forgotten. The Drug Abuse Resistance Education program is taught in fifth grade, and Life Skills is taught in sixth or seventh grade. The DARE elementary curriculum is developmentally appropriate and based on the powerful Social Emotional Learning approach. This curriculum teaches the foundational skills that youth need to be safe, healthy and responsible in leading drug-free lives. Participating in DARE is great, but covering these topics while students are so young is not enough. Especially since in high school, students are much more open to learning life skills like managing a household and finances. The best approach to solve this would be participating in DARE during middle school, followed by a life skills class in high school. Teaching students an up-to-date curriculum similar to DARE would be the best for students today. Sex education is an important subject that students skim the surface or completely miss out on today. We’d like to believe that all parents sit down and talk to their children about “the birds and the bees,” but too many teens are uniformed or learn about sex from what they hear from peers. Less than half of high schools and only a fifth of middle schools are teaching the sexual health topics that the CDC considers “essential” for healthy young people. State legislation needs to change to keep their students safe, protected and aware, especially at a time when this is most relevant. Another reason that a high school Life Skills class would make sense is to deal with the mental health crisis secondary schools are

facing today. The State Board of Education passed a rule requiring every Florida public school to provide students in grade 6-12 at least five hours of mental health instruction each year. Florida counties follow through with this by walking students through required Nearpods during their regular classes. The current instruction is inconsistent and often ineffective, but if presented in its own course, the material would be more meaningful. Whether through Nearpods or through teacherdeveloped instruction, students would benefit from a class that taught topics such as self-care, identification of abusive relationships, growth mindset and self-improvement and symptoms of depression or anxiety. Of course, a Life Skills course could still help with one of the county’s ultimate goals successfully transitioning high school students to college. But in our current system, topics like college admissions and financial planning are a mystery. Most do not know the difference between an Early Action and Early Decision application. Currently, among high school graduates ages 16-24, college enrollment rates for men and women were 59.3% and 66.2%, respectively. With a class making the process less daunting, application rates would increase. Each year, students are online more and face-to-face less, they are struggling to manage their schedules, and they are dealing with more mental health issues than ever before. General life skills are more needed than ever. Instead of leaving students insecure about their futures outside of education, the county should provide a course that will fully prepare them.

DISTURBING REALITY OF SCHOOL BATHROOMS A bathroom can be filled with a student’s worst nightmares when all most want is a quiet place to pee. illustration by Marcela Carrasco

dirtiness. The bathroom is not a social room, raging area, nor the place where manners do not exist. This place is a public area that is necessary for both students and staff, and due to janitor shortages, we are the ones responsible for keeping these areas clean for everyone. The school bathrooms are bad enough by

themselves. It is self-depriving for the students and no one else. There are many ways we can contribute to ending this hellish reality, that is quite literally just moving, not smoking, and refrain from stealing or destroying any school property. So do us all a favor and leave unless you need to pee.

Born in the



MTV Monday ICONIC LOOKS Junior Logan Lopez and seniors Adeline Hart and Kirsten Trevino dress as a punk rocker, Paris Hilton and Jennifer Lopez. “When you think about the 2000s you think of tracksuits. You think Gucci. you think diamonds. You think Paris Hilton,” Hart said. photo by Mia Campese

2000 spread by Gabriella Jaye Herrera

RULING THE NIGHT Following the presentation of homecoming court, senior king Ryan Cedergren and queen Emma Haddad dance to Ed Sheeran’s “Perfect.” “I was very surprised, but I was actually really happy to win,” Haddad said. “My mom was crying a lot and my dad was really happy for me.” Meanwhile, onlookers like junior Thaddeus Elam celebrated the winners by swaying to the beat with their phones’ flashlights on. “They were playing a very romanticized song for the king and queen’s dance, and we were just making light of it,” Elam said. Throughout the night, dancing together was a popular way to stay warm, as temperatures in the 50s kept many dancers in jackets. “It was cold so I beat the cold by wearing a jacket and dancing with my partner,” Elam said. photo by Alexis Izaguirre

Monday Night Kickball

ALIVE AND KICKING Sophomore Marcel Clemens kicks a ball during Monday night’s kickball tournament. Five teams played in the tournament, with “The Windy Hs” coming out on top. “It was a very fun experience because I was friends with most of my opponents, and I did very well,” Clemens said. photo by Michael Tomeo

Disney vs. Nick DREAMS COME TRUE Senior Kelly Krawczyk and junior Kaitlyn Lanz participate in “Disney vs. Nick” day by dressing up as Dipper Pines from “Gravity Falls” and Sully from “Monster’s Inc.” “Sully has been my favorite Disney character for forever, so I thought, ‘why not dress like him?’” Lanz said. photo by Lorelei Stillwell


Seniors t Julia Sumpter

Wear-it-Again Wednesday JUST CHILLAX Juniors Neiken Nguyen and James Sheehan dress in matching “Elf” pajamas. The Leadership class came up with “Wear-itAgain Wednesday” as a fresh twist on the homecoming week classic pajama day. photo by Mia Campese


uring the fourth Molly McGrath for her team. Th managed to maintain a lea Powderpuff, a flag f senior girls face each oth look forward to during h 3, these two grades did ju towardsthe end of the gam Weeks before the gam twice a week every week they ran through plays and The juniors scored the first quarter. The game wa “When we tied up wit together and [it] was like, The cheerleaders did they still took the time to time performance. Cheer preparation was made up



scan here for the interactive online story with photo galleries and videos

Thursday night lights Emily McCluskey


Staff Reporter


night that started with good food and small talk ended with blaring music and black lights. On Nov. 4, the first outside glow pep rally was held in Sam Momary stadium. From 5 to 6:30 p.m., students gathered in the football practice field before the start of the pep rally, where food trucks and games were available. While students had snow cones and played cornhole, the volunteered staff from the school worked on setting up for the pep rally to begin at 7 p.m. “I think [the pep rally] went phenomenally.” Leadership teacher Sarah Bearss said. “Everybody that went had a really good time.” Before the fluorescent lights turned to black

lights, varsity football players were introduced one-by-one through a tunnel of blue and white smoke onto the football field, quickly followed by junior and senior powderpuff cheerleader performances. “We had to cancel a couple of practices but overall we got all the moves down, and had a successful performance,” junior Andrew Broome said. After the homecoming court walked the football field, the lights were turned off and DJ Crazy Ace began playing music from the 2000s to fit the homecoming theme. Students wore their colored-class shirts that glowed under the lights and passed-around glow sticks. “My favorite part was definitely when the lights turned off because nobody was expecting it and we were all just really excited when you

PowerRanger Friday POWER GANG Seniors Lauren Andres and Chase Kaplan wear their white and neon-pink colored class shirts received alongside their homecoming ticket purchase. “The design was more specific to one day of homecoming week, rather than the whole week’s theme, which was cool,” Kaplan said. photo by Jada Llamido

take Powderpuff 17-7 Opinions Editor

quarter of the powderpuff game, senior scored the game winning touchdown hroughout most of the night, the seniors ad over the juniors. football game in which the junior and her, is one of the biggest events students homecoming week. On Wednesday, Nov. ust that with the seniors pulling out a win me with a final score of 17-7. me, the junior and senior girls practiced k leading up to the game. During practice, d got to know their teammates. e first touchdown of the game during the as close until McGrath scored. th the juniors, I think we kind of just came , we need to score,” McGrath said. d not need as much time to prepare but o learn the different cheers and their half coach Elaine Sayre said a lot of the boys’ of stunt work.

could see the neon,” varsity cheerleader Ashley Pauls said. Songs like “Sexy Back” by Justin Timberlake to “Up” by Cardi B filled the stadium as students danced and sang along. “My favorite part of the pep rally was watching all of the students hold up their cell phones and waving them back and forth altogether, [while] singing ‘Take Me Home, Country Roads,’” Bearss said. After the spirit stick was awarded to the junior class, a special live performance by Bass Kingz followed. They performed songs like “Tootsee Roll” by 69 Boyz, which they helped to produce. As the first outdoor glow in the dark pep rally, it was both an enjoyable experience for the students who attended and a successful moralboost before the Nov. 6 homecoming game.

Throwback Thursday THROWING IT BACK Sophomore Julia Register participates in “Throwback Thursday” by carrying a Marie plush and wearing a Girl Scout vest. While most Throwback Thursdays encouraged participants to dress like another decade, students were instead asked to dress like they did in elementary or middle school. photo by Sarena Wilkerson

TOUCHDOWN Senior Emma Haddad pulls junior Alyssa Hines’s flag as she runs toward the end. The game ended with a 17-7 win for the seniors. photo by Shannon Hahn

“We had to practice the stunts a lot because they didn’t know how to lift up a person. They didn’t know how to catch the flyer. The flyer didn’t know how to do their job,” Sayre said. Sayre also explained the challenge of deciding what to do in case someone did not show up to practice or the actual game. Deciding how many people were needed for a base and teaching everyone how to cheer properly was what made up the majority of their practices. “The crowd may have been watching the cheerleaders a little more than the football players, but they were there for entertainment and I think they did well,” Sayre said. Participating in powderpuff changed both the players and cheerleaders perspective on both sports. Everyone admitted that it was harder than they initially thought and gave credit to the athletes. “[Cheer is] pretty difficult. I’ll be honest, you’ve got to be really coordinated,” junior Cameron Jorgenson said. Following the game-winning touchdown, the cheerleaders ran across the field and all of the seniors celebrated their win. Both cheerleaders and football players said the game was a lot of fun and being with their peers during homecoming week was worth it. “Even though the juniors lost, we all came together at the end and we still celebrated just because it’s for fun,” junior Mallory Precord said.

Wednesday Night



entertainment “Venom” (Amazon)

“Dune” (HBO Max)

Released in theaters Oct. 1, “Venom: Let There Be Carnage” was anything but a let down. The movie follows Eddie Brock (Tom Hardy) as he struggles with carrying Venom, an alien parasite. However, as the storyline continues, serial killer Cletus Kasady (Woody Harrelson) becomes his biggest problem. Despite the incredible number of events in the movie, it flowed together beautifully, leaving nothing feeling out of place or random. For being an action and Marvel movie which just added to the film’s charisma. There should be no argument that “Venom: Let There Be Carnage” is a fantastic movie.

Released Oct. 22, “Dune” follows Paul Atreides (Timothee Chalamet), who must go to one of the most dangerous planets to help his family while also navigating his remarkable gift of dreams that seem to predict the future. Despite having exciting action scenes in “Dune,” it lacks enough detail to fill the whole film. Overall, the plot was very confusing. Between the excessive groups of people following the relationship and motives of every group was very obnoxious. Although there were some redeeming qualities, like a few stellar actors and attention to detail in costumes, the overall movie was slow, confusing and not worth the time.

r e v i e w b o x

- Angelica Mendez

- Julia Sumpter

“Blue Banisters” Lana Del Rey

“Dimension: Dilemma” ENHYPHEN

On Oct. 12, ENHYPEN released their first studio album, “Dimension: Dilemma.” In the past year, the band has released two mini-albums, but “Dimension: Dilemma” is by far the better of the two, and it shows the versatility of the group. From the ‘80s pop inspired title track “Tamed-Dashed” to the ballad “Just A Little Bit,” ENHYPEN has shown that they not only sing well, but can also sing many different genres. “Upper Side Dreamin’,” an electro funk song, is the best track on the album. “Dimension: Dilemma” is an amazing album.

Released Oct. 22, “Blue Banisters” is Lana Del Rey’s second album of the year. It keeps the melancholic tone of her previous album which could be a no-go for potential fans. However, she balances these somber tones by having each song have major or minor changes in sound. She continues the trend of taking factors from her life and the world’s events and implementing it in her songs. Overall “Blue Banisters” improves on “Chemtrails” in every way and shows that an album can be grounded, keeping Del Rey on the right track to evolve her music and is a good listen for anyone that needs to decompress.

“Ted Lasso” (Apple TV)

“Just Beyond” (Disney+)

- James Lopez

- Valeria Romero

With the first episode released Oct. 13, “Just Beyond” has taken the works of R.L. Stine’s “Goosebumps” and transformed them into separate stories that appeal to both children and adults. Taking a look inside the world of youth, nine teenagers face a plot of challenges. They are only able to overcome them by realizing what burden they have been living with. Two aspects of the show are relatable – the plots and personalities of characters. As they start to investigate something unusual, the show creates tension and suspense for viewers. The plot flowed throughout each episode creating a great storyline.

After finishing season one with a cliffhanger, fans were raving over a second season of “Ted Lasso” to get further into their reality. The new season kicked off on July 23 but finished the 10 episode season in late October. Although still hilarious and entertaining, season two did not quite live up to the hype of the first season. With more focus on love and relationships, the soccer was overpowered, causing this season to fall a little short of expectations. With more old friends and characters returning in the later episodes, the season is still good, but drifting further from the main focus point: soccer. - Brett Beliech

- Elleigh Ackerman

Comedy, clichés and a healthy dose of humor Joshua Krob


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the jump scare

the ticking

the meet c ut e

the fist fight

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the car chase

the angr y desk sweep the sp

it take


Staff Reporter

ave you ever predicted the plot of a movie five minutes after it started? Well, the new satirical documentary “Attack of the Hollywood Clichés!” gives viewers the skills to do exactly that, all while keeping them laughing. This 58-minute-long TV special, released Sept. 28 on Netflix, lists and explains many of the famous clichés and tropes of films. Everyone has seen the famous cinematic clichés haunting the screen every other movie, from walking away from explosions to the overused “Wilhelm Scream,” a recording of one specific scream used in hundreds of movies. “Attack of the Hollywood Clichés!” knocks viewers out of the park. Even though the movie is a comedy, it still is bursting with interesting information, all while keeping its light, fresh, satirical tone. From the hilariously witty comments by host Rob Lowe to the indepth explanation of how producers hint at the end of movies, it is certainly a must-watch. One example the film goes in depth is the “meet-cute”. A “meet-cute” is how a film

can portray a couple meeting and starting their relationship. The documentary also goes through the extensive planning that goes into classic cliche bedroom scenes, as a direct showing of anything sexual was banned, so directors had to use external things, such as bad weather or a hand smacking a window and trailing down. This film uses professionals’ statements wisely and interweaves them into the comedy. There are hilarious appearances from comedians and actors such as Sanjeev Bhaskar, who appeared on the BBC as Sanjeev Kumar, and the TV show “Monty Python: Almost the Truth” as himself. The film also has quality cinematography, even if a big chunk is taking pieces from other movies. The explosions throughout the movie were realistic, adding to the excitement factor of the film. When transitioning from one scene to another, everything flowed perfectly especially when Lowe goes from an open field to walking through a movie set. “Attack of the Hollywood Clichés!” is a must watch for anyone interested in understanding the ins and outs of Hollywood’s secrets, with laughs to look forward to as well.



Moving past Tourette’s Syndrome Emily McCluskey


Staff Reporter

elling out “I am a truck” or “I hate the British” seems like a normal day for the class clown and an easy way to get a laugh. However, sophomore Kay McAdams is not laughing. McAdams lives with Tourette’s syndrome. Tourette’s Syndrome is a condition characterized by tics, or uncontrollable movements or sounds. Tourette’s is more common than most would assume. The CDC estimates that 1 in 360 children (6-17), just in the United States, have been diagnosed with Tourette’s. However, the condition does not affect everyone the same. McAdams also has physical tics like jerking their head and shaking their hand aggressively. Even though McAdams has no control over this movement they still feel isolated by their difference from the student body. McAdams was diagnosed in elementary school when they were 7. The first sign of their condition was slight but consistent movements of their head and hands, a tic they still has now. As they got older, their tics became increasingly noticeable. McAdams struggles with picking up on other people’s tics or other outside factors like songs or trends on social media, which is common for those diagnosed with Tourette’s. “Actually a lot of sounds on social media do trigger my tics, which is very, very easy, like the berries and cream sound [on TikTok],” McAdams said. “Any sounds that are high pitched or make a lot of high pitch, fast beats [trigger them].” Although treatments and medication for Tourret’s exist, there is no known cure for the condition. Since Tourette’s is characterized in

the nervous system, treatment options include botox injections, anti seizure medications, and dopamine blocking medications. “Physical therapy does help me a lot and there are some drug treatments like haloperidol and tetrabenazine [dopamine blocking medications] that help to suppress tics, but it doesn’t completely stop it,” McAdams said. Outside of their condition, McAdams deals with repeated teasing and judgment from her peers and even strangers. Despite McAdams’ good nature and positive attitude towards their condition, people who are less informed about Tourette’s tend to have less of an understanding of why McAdams’ acts the way they do. “I never really felt normal or okay because I feel like everybody’s gonna look at me or they’re gonna have an opinion about me before they even meet me,” McAdams said. Coping with Tourette’s can be as difficult as coping with any other condition or trauma. The constant battle of trying to ‘act normal’ or fit in with everyone else can be emotionally draining for anyone. Everyone handles situations in their own way. Whatever it may be for, processing a situation or decompressing can help to relieve some of McAdams’ tics. “I like hanging around friends because I feel comfortable being around people I know. It helps me not tic as much and I won’t feel as alone,” McAdams said. A tic attack is when someone diagnosed with TS begins to have one tic after another rapidly. This can lead to shortness of breath, dizziness and, in McAdam’s situation, a seizure. Having Tourette’s at any age is a struggle, but the high school environment can be a struggle, especially for McAdams. Last year, McAdams was provoked into a tic attack in school. A student in her class was mimicking their tics which caused McAdams to

GETTING THROUGH Kay McAdams has lived with Tourette’s Syndrome for half of her life. With time, they have learned how to educate others about Tourette’s and how to cope with their condition. photo by Alexis Madlang

have a seizure. “It makes me feel unsafe,” McAdams said. “It’s hard because I know a lot of people can’t relate to me and it makes me isolated.” People who have been diagnosed with Tourette’s syndrome are still human despite their differences. It is preferred that they are treated similarly and with the same amount of respect as any other person. “I would say that just because people view you as weird it is not a negative thing to have Tourette’s, and anybody that tries to tell you that it is, you don’t need them in your life,” McAdams said.


to listen to the podcast TOURETTE’S TALK A sit down conversation with Kay McAdams discussing their condition and different accommodations the school has provided.

Pep rallies not for everyone Janell Lim


News Editor

houts. Screams. Cheers. Students packed into the bleachers, cheerleaders twirling, jumping, the band blaring out with trumpets and saxophones. The scene is familiar to many students — the bright lights and colors of a pep rally. Meanwhile, in the cafeteria, junior Jane Doe* looks over her pre-calculus homework, sitting quietly by her friend, junior Nina Honda. Around her, 30 other kids sit in silence, listening to music, doing homework or simply talking with friends. The air is silent, calm and tranquil, a stark contrast to the loud scene across campus. These students, who choose not to go to pep rallies, each have their respective reasons, though many attributed their absence to the sheer noise factor of the rally. “Just how big it is, how loud it is. All the energy doesn’t bode well with me. It’s too much,” Doe said. The problem is worsened by Doe’s sensory processing issues, which means she is easily overwhelmed by loud noises often found at pep rallies. “It’s a break. Instead of being overstimulated in a very big space with a lot of people, it’s something that just gives me time to breathe in between a theater class and a math class, where I struggle a lot,” she said. Other students avoid pep rallies because of the weather and a lack of interest in the focus on sports. For junior Kylie Sheplan, celebrating a football team with a record of 6-4 in the Florida heat is less than ideal. “It’s outside and it’s Florida, which is way too hot. I don’t really see a need to celebrate [the football team] when we should be celebrating, like, the bowling team who always wins,”

Sheplan said. According to principal Robert Frasca, the option to opt out of pep rallies has always been available to students, though it was more pronounced this year. “This year in particular we made sure to have an option because there were extra elements added in. One, a bigger crowd. Some students may not have felt comfortable being in a bigger crowd and two, being outside, where it’s hot in the sun,” Frasca said. However, according to Doe, she was not informed of this option during her freshman year. “I asked multiple teachers my freshman year if I was able to stay behind,” Doe said. “I was told I had to go, so I did. But if I was told by a teacher that I didn’t have to go, because of better communication, my freshman year might have been a little bit different.” Students who decide not to go to pep rallies should inform the teacher of the class they are currently in, and go down to the cafeteria. Although these students choose not to go to pep rallies, some still see its benefits, despite choosing not to participate. “I see [pep rallies] as positive. I think they can be good for the school spirit and overall student morale. I just prefer not to go,” Honda said. When asked how they would change the pep rally if given the chance, Sheplan said she would move the pep rally indoors and celebrate a team other than the football team. Doe said she would prefer spacing the students out, especially with COVID as a concern. “If there was a quieter option, or a less crowded option for boosting school morale, I would 100% do it,” she said. *names changed for privacy



illustration by Areli Smith



Staff Reporter

ose gardens, backyard orchards and simple, yet unique houseplants. When an avid gardener opens their front door, they expect a luscious garden to be waiting inside. However, this is not always the case; plants are fragile and need constant attention to be maintained. As frustrating as it is, many “plant moms” keep them healthy with special routines and a unique drive. Freshman Natalie Cazeau does not necessarily see herself as a plant mom.

However, for her, gardening comes with its benefits and skills she can acquire. “Gardening to me is an everyday hobby like drawing or gaming, although it is very soothing, especially when I water the plants and see the progress of them growing and blooming,” Cazeau said. She grows Japanese plums, limes, mangoes and sugar cane. Cazeau makes sure what she learned over the years is applied with her most recent orchards. Cazeau has to water them with their specific schedule, renew the soil and spray pesticide so bugs will not eat them. Cazauen made mistakes when first learning

to garden, but she was able to learn techniques that later helped her improve in gardening. “During winter I forgot to cover the plants, so most of them died out. I was able to save a few mangoes but I did learn to take care of them and beware of how I cover them.” Technical skills may be one way to keep interest in a hobby, but the emotional support goes hand in hand when it comes to gardening. Senior Emily Cobb looks for a relaxing hobby that will bring satisfaction. She has 11 plants named with her favorite political figures (including Joe and Amy), plus assorted cactuses, succulents, and a marble queen pothos. “They are my main emotional support, and have given me a sense of accomplishment and something that’s constantly there for me,” Cobb said. “It’s an easy outlet to get away from stress and work on something mindlessly.” Although it does get a little stressful when a few of her plants have withered and died, she still has learned from it. “The biggest thing is not catching problems in time,” I’ve lost at least two plants because of that, specifically to parasites and rot,” She said, “It’s always a call to reality that I needed to make sure that I was taking care of them all.” She has come a long way in her gardening, now able to identify when to renew soil and when is the best time to water them. “I’ve reached the point where I can start propagating (cultivating) plants, so I’m not buying them as often, but when I do, it’s always worth it because of how ridiculously happy I get,” she said.

While education is a big part of gardening, sophomore Katie Pollack continues her hobby because of the memories and nostalgia it gives her.. “I first became interested when I was little because my grandma would always teach me how to have a green thumb and she loved gardening. Also, during COVID it gave me something to do,” Pollack said. Pollack owns a money tree, monstera, moondrop plant, imperial rose bush and bonsai tree. Caring for these plants has taught her responsibility and organization – from calculating watering schedules to selecting the perfect soil. “The earliest memory of gardening with my grandma was probably decorating her garden on the side of the house,” she said. “I was little, so I wasn’t much help, but she always made me feel accomplished and told me I could do anything I put my mind to.” Through this hobby Pollack has been able to develop her relationship with her grandma, still gardening together as much as they can. “One day when we went out to her garden, we were pulling weeds around her plants. She opened up to me about her childhood and I learned a lot about her that I didn’t know before,” Pollack said. The reasons as to why plant moms keep gardening on their daily schedule differs from each person and each experience. Each one of them has been able to make gardening their unique hobby, gaining both experience and care throughout their gardening journey.

Finding stress where you least expect it Angelica Mendez


Staff Reporter

hen junior Isabella Simonetti returned to school, she expected to be stressed about anatomy and physiology. She did not expect the stress would come from worrying about the people around her. “I did not think I would stress that much about what other people were going through,” Simonetti said. The struggles of surrounding peers and loved ones can be unexpectedly stressful. More specifically, concern about what a friend is going through and what others think are a primary cause of anxiety for students in all grade levels. Often, stresses like these are impossible to see coming. “It is like something happening with my family... I stress about what they are going through rather than what is going on in my own life,” Simonetti said. Freshman Celine Merlin stresses about her actions looking good to others and being successful in the future, which are typical stresses for any high school student. “All I want to do is get better,” Merlin said. “I want to prove to myself and others that I am good, [and] that puts a lot of stress on me to push myself.” When people are disappointed or upset, it can be hard to deal with, but when peers try to help, it can add to the stress. For sophomore Kailyn Davids, too much encouragement for things like grades and running can have the opposite of the intended effect. “Some of the things people do [and] say make me want to do better which makes me stressed even though they are trying to help,” Davids said.

Just like influences from other people, reflecting on past decisions can cause emotional difficulties. Stress can come from thinking about stuff that was done, but it can come just as much from what was not done. This was the case for senior Kaitlyn Malantonio who moved from Sebring, Florida her junior year of high school. When Malantonio moved she felt like she did not have enough time to participate in school activities, clubs and sports since she was almost done with high school. “It is my last year, so now it stresses me out that I haven’t done as much as I wish I had in past years,” Malantonio said. “I felt like I ran out of time because I had to unexpectedly move to a new school in less than a month.” Remembering the past or contemplating missed opportunities may not seem particularly stressful, but in reality, they are the cause of many sleepless nights. Kailyn Davids left band after her freshman year to focus more on other things like running and her grades. Now, when looking back at this choice, she regrets it and feels like she could have managed her running and grades while still doing band. “I know I left [band] for a good reason but I still miss it a lot and sometimes I do not know if it was the right decision,” Davids said. Even activities like sports can cause unanticipated stress. With more time and effort being put into some sports, students begin to feel the need to try even harder to reach certain goals or that they will never reach the goals they set. “[The] main thing that stresses me out that I did not think would is running,” Merlin said. “I always have something to prove so I push myself hard.” Despite causing stress for some people, sports can also be one of the many things

STRESSORS: Senior Abby Maxwell does a lot of activities, including cheer and athletic training. While these are supposed to be fun, it can be difficult to juggle the stress. photo by Jada Llamido

students use to deal with their stress. Spending time exercising can help provide a distraction and ease the mind due to the “feel-good“ endorphins released. “I play soccer to get away from the stress,” Simonetti said. “I am not as stressed about sports as I am [with] school and family.” Finding ways to deal with stress, whether it be expected or unexpected, can be very helpful. Scrolling through your phone, playing sports, hanging out with friends and even reading books can all be useful when trying to relax and

calm down. “I read a lot, it just puts me in an alternate world where I don’t have to be here,” Malantonio said. Along with knowing certain things will be stressful, students should always expect the unexpected when it comes to stress. Whether from sports, people or past decisions, the small moments can have a major impact on students’ lives. Accepting that all things have the potential to be stressful, no matter what they are, can help deal with the stress of the unknown in advance.



MILITARY BRATS Military school students found schools often had higher academic rigor and a stronger sense of community Janell Lim


News Editor

nstead of an alarm clock, sophomore Joelle Jackson woke up to the sound of a military horn, blaring at spaced time intervals to signal soldiers of roll calls, meal times and personal training. That was her reality for five years — living and going to school on a military base. Born in Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, Jackson spent preschool to fourth grade at military schools, otherwise known as a Department of Defense Education Activity school. Like many others, Jackson’s life as a military child involved frequently moving from place to place as a product of her father serving in the Army. With more than 69,000 school-aged military children enrolled around the world, DoDEA schools provide quality education for military dependents, saving families the hassle of searching for new schools. Drawing on her own experience, Jackson came to the same conclusion. “Most of the schools were a little more advanced, only because you’re constantly moving. Different countries do schools differently, so they want you to be prepared. I know that there were some things that I learned that were at more advanced levels than other kids would learn in third or fourth grade,” Jackson said. In fact, these schools on average boast higher test scores than public schools, according to the 2019 National Assessment of Educational Progress test. JROTC Instructor Enrius Collazo, who enrolled all three of his sons in DoDEA schools, says his decision was largely affected by the reality of his military job and the quality of their schooling. “[Enrolling in] DoDEA schools is kind of

like paying for a private school, but we’re not paying for private school, and it’s top notch education,” he said. Collazo’s twin sons, Hagerty seniors Andrew and Edward Collazo, agree that DoDEA schools are excellent schools, though diverge on their opinions on whether public or DoDEA schools offer a better education. In Edward’s point of view, Hagerty’s academics rank above that of military schools. However, in comparison to lower-rated schools in the county, military schools are better, a stark contrast to his brother’s opinion. “[The military school] was definitely very above what normal schools have. If I took a regular class in a federal DoDEA school, it would feel like I was taking an honors class in a normal school,” Andrew said. In addition to the level of academics provided, DoDEA schools differ in terms of the teaching. Teachers, who often have spouses

or children in the military, are typically more understanding of the challenges that come with being a military child. “When it came to missing school, they’re a little bit more lenient than the teachers here, because they know that we live so far away from our families,” Edward said. Other major differences noted between public and DoDEA schools were in behavior and diversity. “The students on the military base were definitely more respectful. I would say more disciplined in a way, because, of course, they have military parents, so they weren’t rowdy,” Andrew said.

“We sleep safely at night because rough men stand ready to visit violence on those who would harm us.”

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US Army Photo - 4th Infantry Division (Mechanized)


Support those who Defend You!

Ensuring Your Freedom

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Wednesday, September 15, 2021 3:23:03 PM

SEMPER FI Joelle Jackson and her sister at Fort Polk in Louisiana. photo by Joelle Jackson


Attributed to Winston Churchill


According to him and Jackson, the schools were also more diverse, with students from all over the world sharing one trait: having military parents. “There’s a whole bunch of different people from different places, so it’s a very inclusive environment because everybody’s used to being the new kid,” Jackson said. According to the 2020 DoDEA report, student diversity was approximately 41% White, 21% Hispanic, 12% multiracial, 11% Black, and 5% Asian, compared to Hagerty’s 68% White, 18% Hispanic, 3% multiracial, 6% Black, and 6% Asian, according to U.S. News. This shared trait also creates a bond between the students, since each one of them are familiar with the military experience of moving around constantly. “The neighborhood I’m in now, even though we’re all one big neighborhood, it’s never felt as close as it has on base. There’s a connection that we have on base that it’s just something you really can’t replicate in a way,” Jackson said. However, there are disadvantages in attending a DoDEA school, particularly in the extracurriculars available to students. Because military schools are typically much smaller than public schools, that means less clubs and less club members. “We did have some sports teams but like lacrosse? We didn’t have that,” Andrew said. “We definitely didn’t have all the honor societies. It was also because some people didn’t live on base, and all the extracurriculars were on base, so there wasn’t always a lot of participation.” Although Jackson and the Collazos have spent different lengths of time as military children, the experience has made significant impacts on their lives. “It made me a much more sociable person,” Jackson said. “You would think with people constantly moving all the time you wouldn’t want to be quick to make friends, but I think, since all of us were in the same boat and we knew this was going to happen, we were like, ‘You know what, might as well just make memories while we can.’”

POPPIN’ OFF Weird Celebrity Couples Skyler Glenn Your favorite celebrity couple struts down the runway at the Met Gala, impressing the crowd with their stunning outfits and “perfect relationship.” Fan edits and fanfictions only further romanticize the lovebirds. Little do you know that the relationship began with a trashy pickup line, and has enough problems to fill a Taylor Swift breakup song. Perhaps one of the most odd yet idolized celebrity couples is Machine Gun Kelly and Megan Fox. In an interview with British GQ, Fox revealed that the first time she met MGK, she said, “you smell like weed.” He, of course, replied with “I am weed.” There’s a lot to unpack there, to put it lightly. In pop culture, Fox is widely regarded as one of today’s most beautiful and talented actresses, and yet she fell for a joke of a man. It would be hard to think of a worse thing to say to the Megan Fox. Later in the interview, Fox went on to describe how their relationship is “the darkest fairytale.” There’s no way that a relationship that was built upon “I am weed” is dark or a fairytale. Another relationship that is hopefully not as dark is the one of Kim Kardashian and Pete Davidson. The two were spotted holding hands on a rollercoaster after sharing an onscreen kiss on Saturday Night Live. First of all, has Davidson dated every single woman who breathes? He wanted to go without dating big celebrities after his breakup with Ariana Grande, but that clearly didn’t happen. Kardashian is currently going through her divorce from Ye, so she may just need emotional support from a friend. Time will tell. Fans don’t really know if the relationship is real or a publicity stunt, but regardless, it’s very interesting. They might be weird, but at the end of the day, it’s not anyone’s problem but theirs.


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Checking up on the ID checkers Reagan Eastlick


Staff Reporter

s you walk into school with countless other kids, you are suddenly plucked out of obscurity, stopped and pulled aside. What are you guilty of? Your only crime is not wearing a school ID. As you rummage through your backpack, one of two men carefully watches over you to make sure you find it. If you are unable to locate it, they will direct you towards the front office to pick up a temporary pass. For you, that morning instance is just a tiny blip in an otherwise big day. For some, it is a job to be taken seriously. Darryl Harris and Keith Jackson are the men checking IDs in the morning, but their lives are much more than just checking for lanyards. Harris was born and raised in Deland, Florida, but moved down to Oviedo for a job opportunity after graduating. “I put in for the job and they hired me,” Harris said. “I actually applied twice. I came back for a second interview this year and ended up getting the job here.” For him, the job is about more than just school safety. “I wanted to be a safety guard so I could have a relationship with the students and be like a big brother to them. It’s good to teach them right from wrong and keep them out of trouble,” Harris said. Jackson, on the other hand, grew up in Indianapolis, Indiana. He moved to Florida in order to attend college, but fell in love with the state and ended up staying to work on campus. “The opportunity came about and I heard great things about the school and I got hired. I just filled out the application and I was in. The whole thing was a great experience.” The two men perform different tasks on campus outside of checking IDs in the morning. Jobs for Harris include checking bathrooms to make sure students are not vaping, ensuring kids are in class, and keeping the campus safe. Oftentimes the latter includes patrolling school

PICTURED AT THEIR POST Darryl Harris (left) and Keith Jackson (right) ensure students are wearing their IDs as they enter school. Both enjoy getting to know students beyond their regular disciplinary jobs. photo by Michael Tomeo

property, checking on the school parking lots and being on call for various emergencies. Jackson operates more in the sphere of actual classrooms. Oftentimes one can find him assisting in the weight room, helping run inschool suspension, or acting as an emergency sub. “The job changes everyday, but that is part of what makes it exciting,” Jackson said. Outside of regular school duties, both men try to build a relationship with the students they interact with each day. “I talk to a lot of students, I even gave some of them nicknames,” Harris said. “I enjoy seeing them come into school everyday.” Harris believes it is the little things that brighten a

student’s day. Jackson agrees: “There are a lot [of students] that know me and say hello every day or wave. It’s not always ‘hey, where is your badge at?’ Sometimes we just want to say hi.” For Harris, a former high school athlete, working with kids in extracurriculars is especially rewarding. “I play football, and I love working here because you can coach track and other sports. I want to see every student become successful, both in sports and school.” School, for Jackson and Harris, extends beyond the classroom. The entire environment of a learning center is important, and both men think

that this campus is exemplary. “The administration here is amazing,” Jackson said. “It’s like a nice family structure with our leadership. I want to work my way up, and maybe one day be a bigger part of that.” Harris also sees the school in his future. “I love working for the school board. It’s the only job where you can teach students and show them the right path to take. I try to help them learn from my own experiences back when I was in school.” Whether it be protecting the campus, checking IDs in the morning, or acting as a substitute teacher, Harris and Jackson play a large role in every student’s day.

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Bowling takes top 8 at state tournament Karson Cuozzo


PERFECT FOCUS In a match against Winter Springs, senior Cade Rogers gets ready to bowl. Rogers was one of the seniors who led the team to a 15-1 season record and an eighth place finish at states. photo by Nicole Turner

Sports Reporter

he boys bowling team qualified 16th and finished in the top eight out of 32 teams at the state tournament held Nov. 2-4 at the Boardwalk Bowl in Orlando. “I felt pretty good going into states. We had a strong season and a really strong district tournament. I felt our team was stronger than last year and we qualified sixth at states last year, so I was pretty confident,” said head coach Jacob Colquhoun. This was Colquhoun’s second consecutive state team since he took over as head coach. Last year the team qualified as sixth out of 26 teams, and finished in the top 16. This year, the team also qualified for the double elimination tournament, but barely earned the final spot, the sixteenth spot, beating the 17th place team by four pins. The team made the most of their close qualification though and played four games over two days in the double elimination portion of the tournament. In the first match, they faced top-seeded Tampa Bay HEAT and lost (624-539) 3-0. The HEAT is a homeschool group based out of Tampa that attracts top bowlers from the area, and the team that eventually took second in the state. “The Tampa Bay HEAT game was a hard

game. They were just bowling amazingly, they’re really good,” senior Cade Rogers said. Next, Hagerty beat Bishop Verot High (887-806) 3-1 to qualify for the second day of competition, where they beat East River High (699-479) 3-0, before losing to Apopka High (630-550) 3-0. Apopka was hitting almost all of their spares, which made it hard to keep up. “Apopka I would say was our biggest competition. They’re a very sound team, pick up almost all of their spares and have a program that has historically been very successful at the state tournament. Going against them was definitely our toughest competition,” Colquhoun said. The team had a good run at states and was satisfied with how the tournament ended. “As the coach, I will always find something I could have done to give us a better chance. The boys did everything they could and I truly believe they left it all out there. Unfortunately, we just came up a little short. I believe we were as prepared as we possibly could be,” Colquhoun said. Their postseason run started Oct. 25, when the team placed first at districts and guaranteed a spot in the state tournament. “We were very well prepared moving into districts,” Colquhoun said. “I am proud of what both teams did this season.”

Girls soccer builds on last year

Zahra Ateeq


Staff Reporter

7-on-7 scrimmage, 11 vs 11 scrimmage, fitness test, shooting tests, and dribbling tests. As the future varsity team ran across the field, occupying their territories, last season’s successes flushed their minds. Girls soccer tryouts were ongoing from Monday, Oct. 18, through Thursday, Oct. 21. Students who participated in tryouts were expected to perform a series of tasks including assessing their abilities to dribble, pass, shoot, and other aspects that gave insight to their overall fitness levels. JV coach Charles Kenny and varsity coach Angela Densberger kept track of how each student performed through a listed form. “[We have] ranking systems of between times and how well they did,” Densberger said. “I’ve seen some of them play on the big field as well, so kind of a culmination of all those items.” Students such as freshman Olivia Cachat and junior Kiley Keegan hope to continue the team’s success this season. Cachat made JV this year and Keegan has been on the varsity team since

ON THE FIELD Outside back Raina Hawkins defends against a Lyman player in the first home game of the season on Nov. 9. Varsity won the game 2-1. Photo by Marietta Jordan.

her freshman year. “I was really excited for this year and I definitely want to try to win more games,” Keegan said. “I definitely do think we have the team to do so, so it’ll be exciting, and we’re playing harder teams for the experience to get to the next level.” With this, both coaches Kenny and Densberger can agree that the future of the team this year is uncertain due to the number of new people that are being brought onto the team, but their goals for their teams will help them win state and plenty of games. “For each player to get better, that’s what my goal is,” Kenny said. “More than winning games is getting each player better, so they can move on to varsity.” Coach Densberger on the other hand is hoping to set a clear focus and a bonding team for each game that the varsity team participates in this year. “Going into each game I just want to focus on that one game rather than look too far into districts and beyond,” Densberger said. “If we can get that nice cohesive group with good chemistry and people who want to work for each other, then those goals are going to come.” Sophomore Skye Barnes made the varsity team this year and explains why this year brings a hopeful year for success. “It’s exciting because we apparently didn’t do too well the season before [last year’s season],” Barnes said. “So to finally win, I think everybody was pretty excited.” Varsity finished last season with a winning record of 14-3-1 within the games they played. This showed more successes than previous seasons. Their two preseason games this year took place on Monday, Oct 30 and Thursday, Nov. 3. In their first preseason game against Edgewater High School, they played with a win of 3-0, while their second game against Timber Creek resulted in a 0-0 tie. At the end of the day, excitement for the season is high. Nineteen people were excited to make both varsity and JV this year, and seniors Estelle Cachat, Riley Sophia and Alexis Madlang were named captains for the varsity team. “I think it’s always exciting, you’re always starting a new chapter, a new group,” Densberger said. “Lots of decisions to be made so it’s definitely not my favorite part of the year, but the excitement is definitely there [during tryouts].” Girls soccer Instagram posted a picture of the varsity team this year on Oct. 25, tagging those who made the team.

The team had a positive mindset as they moved into districts, knowing that they had the best record out of all the teams competing. “We were pretty confident – we had the best record out of the entire conference and we went into it knowing that we could beat everyone,” senior Jacob Daleandro said. In the district finals the team had to play Oviedo, Lake Howell and Lyman. After losing to Lyman in their last regular season match, the team redeemed themselves with a 3-1 win, along with a 3-0 win against Oviedo, and a 3-1 win against Lake Howell. In the Oviedo game the team was ahead the whole game, the starters executed and pushed through the rival game. “It was an emotional win against Oviedo for sure, and they were fired up. We still took care of business,” senior Cade Rogers said. Finishing up their normal season 15-1, becoming district champions and placing top eight in states is not a bad way to end a season, and Colquhoun has no regrets. “Overall I am really proud of them. It’s obviously disappointing to have our season come to an end, and I am going to miss all the guys that are graduating and moving on, but this year was huge for our program as a whole. We made it farther than we have in a really long time and set a really good foundation for the future,” Colquhoun said.

athlete of the issue Who

Molly McGrath


Senior team, Powderpuff


Nov. 3


Scored a touchdown


Sam Momary Stadium The seniors beat the juniors 17-7 on Wednesday, Nov. 3 with the help of senior Molly McGrath, a varsity track and varsity soccer athlete who starred for the seniors in the powderpuff game. McGrath use her speed to make multiple plays for the team, including a 20-yard touchdown in the first half. She ran to the right side of the field then switched back to the left side and scored while running up the sideline. The team made the extra point after. “My favorite part about playing in the powderpuff game was how everyone was excited and had my back,” McGrath said. “There was a lot of excitement in the crowd.”



New faces, same goals Ava West


MAXING OUT Senior Hope Lusher completes her clean and jerk of 130 pounds. The girls weightlifting team lost to Winter Springs on Wednesday, Nov. 3. photo by Jada Llamido

Cross country 15th at states Seymour takes third, Leon takes 12th to lead team at Tallahassee meet

said. “I think these results put me in a great position for upcoming years seeing as I am only a sophomore.” Seymour has led the team with multiple first place wins, along with breaking the school Angelica Mendez 5k record back in September at the Hagerty Staff Reporter Invitational. He managed to overcome his With a second place finish at championships nerves before the meet and was one of the top already accomplished, the boys’ varsity cross state runners. country team ran their way to their seventh “I feel very pleased about my performance,” place finish at the 4A Region 1 Championship Seymour said. “I exceeded my goals and ran on Nov. 6. The teams seventh a solid time on a true cross “States help[ed] place finish, on a 16 team field, country course.” qualifying them for their goal boost my confidence The team’s challenging of reaching state finals. weekly practices helped play The team’s top runners, and understand that a leading role in the team’s junior Brayden Seymour with I am more capable success. Their final week of a time of 16:01 and sophomore practice consisted of a 50 minute than I think.” Jonathan Leon running a 16:16 long run, a speed workout, and led them to states. Along with Jonathan Leon, 10 a recovery run followed by an racing against tough teams like ice bath and stretching. Creekside high school, the boys battled tough “The stretch run workouts focus on weather conditions while running. anaerobic threshold and allowing the body to “The boys conquered the worst recover quickly,” Getty said. conditions I have ever experienced at a cross The team ran their final race of the country meet,” coach Jay Getty said. season with mostly underclassmen and few On Nov. 12, the team took the field at upperclassmen. The top athletes for the season Apalachee Regional Park for the 4A FHSAA were Seymour, Leon, and sophomore Marek state finals. The team finished in fifteenth place Orr, who will all be back for the upcoming and was led by Seymour, who had a time of years. 15:38 and finished in third place, and Leon with “We were very pleased with the development a 16:00 in twelfth. of the youth in the program to be able to step “My results at states help[ed] boost my up to support our already established leaders,” confidence and help[ed] me understand that I Getty said. “With the team earning a bid to the am a lot more capable than I think I am,” Leon state finals it adds clarity to our success.”

Staff Reporter

enior Mari McCluskey chalked up her hands getting ready to do a clean and jerk. She knew she could take it easier during the meet because she was only competing against one opponent, but she grabbed the metal bar and used all of her power to complete the lift. Only her bench press was left, and McCluskey won the ultimate weight class benching 115 pounds and lifting 134 pounds for the clean and jerk. “I am proud of what I was able to complete at the meet,” McCluskey said. “There were some things that I could have done better, but it tells me what I can improve on for the future.” The girls varsity weightlifting team is looking to continue a tradition of district and state excellence, and they competed in their first meet of the season against Lake Howell on Wednesday, Nov. 3. The team won 63-12 and members came away impressed. “I think the meet went great considering it was the start of the season and how many new girls joined the team this year,” senior Kailey Tedeschi said. “Everyone lifted great and supported each other the whole meet.” Not only did the team win, but multiple girls won their weight class. Like McCluskey, senior Chloe Varady also won her 169 weight class, benching 135 pounds and lifting 125 pounds for the clean and jerk. Both girls were able to win with minimal competition because only a few people participated in the meet. “I didn’t have any competition in my weight class – I was the only one competing,” Varady said. “I was able to get an easy win for myself and the team.” While the first meet against Lake Howell was expected to be a win, the real challenge

would come against Winter Springs, an opponent the weightlifting team consistently competes against for district and regional championships. The girls fell to Winter Springs 59-31 making their record 1-1. The team viewed both meets as an opportunity to see where they are at and how they will be able to improve in the future. It also serves as a benchmark for the season. “The meets showed us where we currently are and where we can be,” McCluskey said. One of the main goals for the team would be to win districts, regionals, and get to states. “I feel like we are well prepared for the rest of the season,” head coach David Attaway said. “We did fantastic this past meet so I have high hopes we will go far in districts and regionals.” One of the other goals for the team would be to support and be there for their teammates and get closer with each other outside of only talking about practice according to the lifters. “During breaks in the meet, we will all sit together and get to know each other while talking,” Tedeschi said. The girls practice every day, even before meets, and compete on Wednesdays. Practices consist of dynamic stretches to warm-up followed by a program made up of certain things to work on for the meet. These specific programs include working on their lifting technique by targeting a certain muscle group like the arms or legs. The team has a shorter season this year with only six more meets left until districts. The girls have high hopes that they will make it far this year based on past success, even if the majority of the team is new. “I think we are going to do great in the postseason,” McCluskey said. “We have a lot of new girls this year and they are starting out incredibly strong. It is very impressive to see.”

sports shorts

Girls basketball falls to Wekiva

On Thursday, Nov. 11 the girls varsity basketball team traveled to Wekiva High School for their second preseason game. The top performer from the game was junior Hannah Kohn, who scored 12 points, but the team lost 76-28. The team is 0-2 in the preseason with a loss to Colonial High School. Freshman Celine Merlin (pictured), a center on varsity, is one of several new faces on the team, coached by Joshua Johns. The team went 12-13 last season, and the first official game of this season is on Tuesday, Nov. 16 against Seminole High School at home.

Athletes commit on signing day

On Wednesday, Nov. 10, nine athletes participated in National Signing Day. Stewart Puckett committed to UCF for baseball, Cameron King and Schyler Arroyo committed to Bethune Cookman for baseball, Zoe Thornsbury committed to Indian River State College for softball, Averi Munoz committed to Queens University of Charlotte for softball, Jasmine Beckett committed to Lindenwood for lacrosse, Carly Bitner committed to St. Leo for lacrosse, Hannah Thomas committed to Anderson for lacrosse, and Olivia Price committed to Anderson for volleyball.

Lopez, Zinck top swim regionals

On Nov. 1-6, sophomore Jenna Lopez and senior Griffin Zinck both placed twelfth in their events at the regional championships. Zinck placed in the 50 yard backstroke while Lopez placed in diving. Lopez also placed third in districts on Oct. 25-30. Zinck and Lopez led their teams in the end-of-the-season competition. Lopez was the one out of two divers to compete for districts, and the only one to compete for regionals. “I originally did gymnastics but quit diving,” Lopez said. “The background and strength I got from gymnastics really helps me.”

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