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Inside This Edition •Cursive

writing among high school students has decreased because it is not required by teachers. Although print is used more often, cursive has its benefits as well.

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Friday, December 15, 2006 Vol. 38 • Issue 5

Lafayette High School • 17050 Clayton Road • Wildwood, Missouri • 63011

Shot down at the Shootout

Access Denied:

Internet filters block useful sites; student provides workaround Kevin Pinney • Editor in Chief

photo • Brett Hamlin

•Screen Shot. Going to the foul line, Vianney’s Demond Love shoots a free throw against the Lancers at the KMOX Shootout on Dec. 7 at Scottrade Center. The Golden Griffins, led by senior forward Dave Stewart’s 25 points defeated the Lancers 51-47. See page 15 for the full story.

What started off as a way to get free internet access on his cell phone ended up with a call to the principal’s office. Senior Mike Knoop set up an internet proxy on his personal website, mikeknoop.com. “I set it up so I wouldn’t have to pay Verizon $40 a month for internet. Some of my friends found it and they decided they could use it for bypassing filters and such and it took off like that,” Knoop said. The proxy’s ability to bypass Internet filters is what prompted Mr. Bill Stewart, instructional technologist, to notify Assistant Principal Tim Jones about the site. They asked Knoop to remove the proxy, and he put a block on the link to the proxy so computers on the school’s network couldn’t access it. The district added Knoop’s site to the Internet block list on Nov. 27. “This isn’t true anywhere else except in America. If schools tell you to do something you have to do it. Legally, you can pursue it and appeal it in court,” Mr. Adam Goldstein, an Attorney Advocate at the Student Press Law Center said. “What students do beyond school grounds is beyond school reach.

See Access continued page 5

Board approves 7-period block hybrid

Ashley Edlund • Reporter On Dec. 7, the Rockwood Board of Education (BOE) decided on a seven period hybrid schedule. But the decision did not come without debate. The seven period hybrid was one of many schedules examined to accommodate the fact that starting with the Class of 2010, students will have to earn 24 credits instead of 22. The board eventually narrowed the proposed schedules to two: the seven period hybrid schedule and the modular schedule. In the hybrid schedule, which is to be implemented in the 2008-2009 school year, the school day is divided up into blocked and non-blocked classes. Non-blocked classes meet for 49 minutes each day, while blocked classes will meet three times a week, for one hour and 44 minutes. This will result in an equal seven-period school day. “It sounds really complicated, but if you ac-

It sounds really complicated, but if you actually see a pattern of how it would work over a week, it’s not as bad as it seems.

-Cole Donelson, 11

tually see a pattern of how it would work over a week, it’s not as bad as it seems. I think that’s why people are turned off to it,” junior Cole Donelson said. Donelson was asked to be on the building level committee last year, which was created to look at various schedules and to decide which would best fit the board. In the beginning of the process, the committee was supposed to look for inexpensive options for the schedule change. But the district realized that they had a surplus and met again to make sure the schedules selected were still wanted with the money available. “The board found out that the year they want to implement it [the new schedule], they will have more money so the board advised the committee to look again without worrying about the cost,” Donelson said. He added, “Basically, we came to the conclusion that we like the mod[ular] schedule best earlier this year. It wasn’t as unanimous when we didn’t consider cost but most still opted for the modular schedule.” However, some believe either schedule would be effective, depending on student choice. “In my opinion, either the mod[ular] or the hybrid will afford students the number of credits they need,” Principal Larry Schmidt said. “But like anything, it’s [class selection] a matter of

choice.” Along with new graduation requirements, teachers and those on the board also wanted to give students more options. With a new schedule to be implemented, some, like language arts teacher Mr. Nathan Willard, believe students will have that chance. Willard was also a part of the committee working with the board to finalize the schedule. “I think a lot of students will be able to take more classes during the school year that they would have never been able to take at all,” Willard said. “If you were a kid that took choir, and foreign language, you’d be locked into core classes. [I believe] it will give students the opportunity to take more fun and diverse classes.” Despite this, Rockwood National Education Association President Erik Graham said the process is not over. “No matter what schedule is adopted, there is a still a lot of work that has to be done in order to implement it successfully in 2008-2009,” Graham said. Under the new schedule, teachers will have 5 periods of student responsibility, one professional responsibility period and one planning period. This can range from supervising study hall to teaching classes. Teachers and administrators will now have to decide which classes will be blocked.


page 2 • editorial

dec. 15, 2006

& Stars To:

The weather outside is frightful, the parking lot is even worse For a while, it seemed like the snow day had been removed from our lives forever. Snow rarely came any day but Friday and whenever we were hit with mid-week snowfall, Richwoods slept in while Rockwood never got lucky. Looking back, it seems like each school year had a good number of snow days. The state of Missouri requires students to attend 174 days of class each school year, and if a school falls below that requirement for whatever reason, days must be added on to compensate. Rockwood School District builds in a few extra days “to provide more student learning,” according to their website. That way, we won’t necessarily have to add on days at the end of the year if school is called off. Problem is, everyone’s definition of extreme weather is dramatically different. To those of us who live out off Highway 100, ice and snow make getting to school nearly impossible. Not to mention the

holla back Every month the Image will conduct a lunch time poll based on a current event. When you see us coming with our clip boards, stand up and be counted!

image info Editor in Chief • Kevin Pinney News Editor • Britt Peters Asst. News Editor • Matt Hibbard Opinion Editor • Mary Belzer In-Depth Editor • Sarah Southerland Feature Editor • Jen Apoian Entertainment Editor • Nicole Castellano Sports Editors • Ryan Bueckendorf, Josh Handler Photographers • Alex Erdman, Alexis Myers Ad Manager • Brian Ruyle Artists • Ankit Bhargava, Kate Webb Adviser • Nancy Y. Smith MJE Staff: Kendall Brewer, Aaron Casias, Alex Davis, Ashley Edlund, Brett Hamlin, Sydney Miller, Brad Schlemmer, Nancy Stiles, Brooke Thibodaux and Nina Walters

school parking lot, which never seems to be entirely plowed. In the last 10 years, Rockwood has rarely called more then two snow days per year, all of which were probably entirely justified. But on the more questionable days, the district tends to leave school in session and turn their backs when kids are getting in accidents to and from school. A few weeks ago, when school dismissed early due to ice and snow, every car in the lot was covered in ice half an inch thick, making the drive home dangerous. And it’s not just the weather that’s endangering drivers, it’s the drivers themselves not being smart about the situation. It’s not hard to throw an ice scraper in the trunk, and taking two minutes to clean off your car while it’s warming up is certainly better than rear-ending a Lexus. If we do end up in class on a snowy day and students get hurt in the parking lot or anywhere else, it would be interesting to

After making headlines as the most dangerous city in the United States, St. Louis is in the spotlight again for its wide spread power outages. Residents and businesses alike have been left without power during the recent storms, and Ameren UE hasn’t been so quick to fix the problem. Between our two major appearances in the national news, some people are starting to worry that St. Louis is losing its good reputation as a city.

Do you think Ameren’s slow response to power outages harms St. Louis’ reputation?

editorial

Opinions do not necessarily reflect the viewpoints or official policies of the school administration. All editorials (unsigned) represent a majority opinion of the Editorial Board. Signed editorials, columns, editorial cartoons and reviews reflect the views of the author and not necessarily those of the Image Editorial Board.

see how responsible Rockwood would be held for the situation. We all know Rockwood would never fess up, and as students we tend to feel like we keep getting the cheap end of the deal. Whether we get a snow day or we’re in class, we’ve got to be safe about getting around. No matter how irritated you are that you didn’t get out of your Physics test, be smart when you’re driving home to make sure you’ll get to launch that snowball at your neighbor’s house.

Yes 43% No 57% 204 students polled

write these in your final review packets

•Winter break is well on its way. Sure, our brains will be on the verge of exploding before finals, but we’ll soon be able to take the edge off with some hot chocolate and throwing snowballs at our neighbors. •The boys soccer team placed second in the State Championship. There’s nothing like the sweet smell of success to keep school spirit up and running. Now let’s keep that going for basketball season. •After far too long, the glorious snow day has come back into our lives. No, it wasn’t a dream. The ground really was covered in that beautiful white powder. Oh, and don’t forget the ice you were scraping off your windows for 30 minutes. •The basketball team was in the KMOX Shootout again this year. For sports fans, it was a great day full of school spirit. For everyone else, it was a nice day off or seven hours of study halls. Everybody wins. Well, except the basketball team. •Holiday decorations are going up everywhere. The streets are lined with lights, and no matter what you believe, you have to appreciate a little holiday cheer. •The hockey team beat Marquette with a score of 4-1. Even if we didn’t win all the fights in the parking lot, we came out with a victory against our biggest rivals.

Gripes To:

•Construction has messed with the heating and cooling of the Flex area. Sure, the improvements will be great for everyone, but can we at least keep the conditions tolerable? No one wants to be bundled up during large group. •Ceiling leaks are all over the school after the snow storm. It’s bad enough trying to dodge around immobile freshmen. Now we have to maneuver through dozens of water-catching trash cans, too. •Lunch line food is starting to go downhill. Chip varieties are getting weak, pizza comes in every shape and size and the veggie boats are sinking fast. We need some fuel before finals. •The pop-up notices on the computers telling us that the student drive is full. Not only is it annoying, but we’re given technology and now we can’t even use it. •Michael Richards, more widely known as Kramer from Seinfeld, went on a racist rampage against a few members of his crowd during a comedy routine. Come on, Kramer. That just wasn’t funny. •Computers in Science Resource are slower than Ameren’s response to power outages. By the time you open up Microsoft Word, the class period is over. Rockwood, this is strike two for technology.

Publication Information

The Image is published 10 times a year by the Newspaper Publication Class. Subscriptions cost $25 per year. Free issues are distributed on campus. The 2005-2006 Image received a rating of All-American with five marks of distinction from the National Scholastic Press Association, a Gold Medalist by the Columbia Scholastic Press Association, an International First Place winner by Quill And Scroll and received a ranking of Superior by the Sponsors of School Publications of Greater St. Louis.

Philosophy Statement

The newspaper’s primary obligation is to inform its readers about events in the school and community and of issues of national or international importance which directly or indirectly affect the school population. The newspaper, while serving as a training ground for future journalists as part of the school curriculum, recognizes all rights and responsibilities under the First Amendment. Operating as a public forum, student editors will apply professional standards and ethics for decision making as they take on the responsibility for content and production of the newspaper. While the student staff encourages constructive criticism of any part of the newspaper, authority for content rests in the hands of the student members of the newspaper staff. Students will not publish material considered to be legally unprotected speech, or libel, obscenity, material disruption of the educational process, copyright infringement, or unwarranted invasion of privacy.

How To Reach Us:

We are located in Room 213 at Lafayette High School, 17050 Clayton Rd., Wildwood, MO 63011. Our phone number is (636) 458-7200 ext. 2338 and our e-mail address is smithnancy@rockwood.k12.mo.us Please visit us on the web at www.lafayettepublications.com


op-ed • page 3

the image

letters to the editor

Dear Editor, There’s nothing better than having a day and a half off of school due to snow and ice (after 3 years), but there’s nothing worse than coming back to school and having to worry about breaking one of your limbs walking into school on the never-ending sheet of ice that was left on the parking lot and walkways after the winter storm. After watching students slip and slide around all morning, holding onto each other for fear of injury, I couldn’t help but wonder: does Rockwood School District (or Lafayette) really care for the students’ safety as much as they claim? Two students this year had to go to the hospital with ice-related injuries from the parking lot, and several students in years past have had winter-related injuries because of this same issue. In addition to the hazardous conditions of the walkways and parking lot, our night custodians were put to work shoveling the walkways after school on the Monday after the storm, working into the darkness of night in frigid temperatures, which isn’t a part of their job description. The night custodial staff definitely deserves a bonus. I think with more effort and a bit more funding for situations such as these, Lafayette and other Rockwood schools would be a lot better off. Sincerely, Bonnie Nichoalds, 12 Dear Editor, I am writing in response to Mary Belzer’s recent article titled, “Power Lies in the Hands of White Man.” Mary wrote that “well over 200 years after our country’s establishment, we have yet to see a non-male, non-white President.” Despite the many diverse people who have run for president, none but a few have resonated with the American majority. Also, Ms. Belzer claims that the sole reason why people have a problem with Hillary Clinton is because “she’s a woman. And she’s in power.” But that isn’t true. It’s what she stands for and lobbies for that the American electorate find distasteful. Moving on…Mary, you said that “white America seems to have a problem with him [Barack Obama] as well: he’s black. And he’s in power.” Well, you are white. You are also technically American, whether you say the Pledge of Allegiance or not. My next point regards the statement you made at the end of the 6th paragraph: “We live in a melting pot, and it’s time our administration starts to represent that.” It’s funny, though, that the current administration is the most diverse in history. In your last paragraph, you say, “look past the person’s appearance, ignore their gender and never mind what God they pray to.” So what is it? Ignore gender, or ignore men? Ignore the candidate’s God or ignore the Christian God? I think it’s time you start making your arguments a little less ambiguous. Sincerely, Brian Sammons, 12

Letters to the Editor Policy

Participation through letters to the editor by students, faculty and the community is encouraged. Letters must be signed but names will be withheld upon request and with the concurrence of the Editorial Board. Letters should be limited to 300 words. The Image reserves the right to reject, edit or shorten letters. Deadlines will be announced in the school bulletin and in each issue of the paper. Letters may be submitted in writing to Room 213, or to any Image staff member, or via e-mail to smithnancy@rockwood. k12.mo.us

Spreading knowledge is the only cure Quite Contrary Around the world, more than 38 million people are infected with HIV/AIDS, over 70 percent of them being in Africa. As educated and advanced as we claim to be, it’s sad that millions of Americans know nothing about the virus, other than the fact that it’s potentially deadly. December is World AIDS Awareness Month, so there’s no better time to be informed. For those of you who don’t know, AIDS is a virus that attacks the immune system, making you more at risk to suffer from common diseases. The disease weakens your system so much that deaths are often from things like the flu. HIV is the virus that eventually can develop into AIDS. I know, you’re probably wondering why you should even care about this. AIDS is a world wide epidemic. It doesn’t just appear among drug addicts and homosexuals, and even if you aren’t directly affected by the virus, it could affect you in the long run. As more people are infected, more people need medication. Treatments are very expensive, and as more people are living without healthcare, this will eventually cause a change in the world economy. Also, with more people infected, the world is left with less people to progress society. AIDS is known for taking lives at a young age, and therefore could destroy the world’s future. When the virus was first discovered, help was pouring in from concerned citizens. The AIDS-related death of Freddie Mercury, lead singer of Queen, brought the effort to mainstream media. But after a while, the hype died down and funds went dry. Even in the past 10 years, with minimal funding available, medical treatments have improved dramatically. If we pull more people into the effort now, we can make a huge difference. But no matter how good our medicines get, it’s up to us to stop the spread. This is where it’s important to be aware of the virus. We need to stop treating it as such a

by Mary Belzer, Opinions Editor shameful subject. Otherwise, this epidemic could wipe out much of the world’s population, affecting all of us. I’m not expecting you to donate billions of dollars to some poor family in Africa. It doesn’t take that to make a difference. Lots of companies are promoting red products right now, and all of them donate a part of the proceeds to HIV/AIDS foundations. If you’re buying a new cell phone, go for the red Motorola RAZR. If you’re not in the market for any new products, it’s easy to sign up with a campaign of some kind. The ONE Campaign doesn’t even require a membership fee. You can sign up at their website, www.one.org, and start receiving e-mails with information about the epidemic. You will also receive petitions to sign and information about events around your area that are set up to raise awareness about AIDS and other worldwide concerns. If you want to donate, you can purchase ONE products, or cash donations are widely accepted. If nothing else, educate yourself. I’m not going to preach to you, but if you aren’t aware of the disease, simply because it doesn’t directly affect you, keeping yourself in the dark could change that any day. So this Month, in the spirit of the holidays and World AIDS Awareness month, do a little something to help out. With enough people, the smallest actions can turn the epidemic around.

There’s nothing wrong with asking why ­­They are the things that set our country apart from Cuba, and don’t forget most of the Middle East. We, as students, live in a country founded on important ideals protected by the Constitution. Freedom of speech is arguably the most important. But how can we expect to protect these rights if every day in school they’re limited? How can the future of America ever know the importance of these rights if we’ve never had a chance to use them? It’s understandable how it’s necessary for some rights to be given up in order to conduct things safely at school. But, generally, those aren’t protected by the First Amendment, they’re protected by others. But there are also times when the concern for “safety” gets ridiculous. After braving the dangers of the ice skating rink (aka the parking lot) and I get inside, I’m bombarded with “TAKE OFF YOUR HAT” instead of a warm greeting. Just let me wear my beanie until I get to my locker. A funny thing arose in my experimentation with the hat rule. When I wear a Santa hat, I’m greeted with a smile. Next step: Yarmulke. If the school is that worried about safety, maybe have district maintenance throw down some salt after a snow storm. That way, two people don’t have to be taken to the emergency room for slipping on the ice the first day back at school. The hat removal requirement is an infringement on my Freedom of Speech. Look at Tinker vs. Iowa. Supreme Court Justice Abe Fortas said on behalf of the majority, “In the absence of a specific showing of constitutionally valid reasons to regulate their speech, students are entitled to freedom of expression of their views.” My view is that it’s too cold outside. I’m wearing my hat in protest. We’re talking about the future of America in today’s schools. If rights are suppressed when we’re supposed to be learning, it only teaches us that it’s okay for our rights

A Pinney For Your Thoughts

by Kevin Pinney, Editor in Chief to be infringed upon. There was almost an example of that here at Lafayette. A student had a personal website and was asked by administrators to take it down. The sad thing is the fact that the student did. What’s the use of having rights if you won’t even use them? If you won’t even stand up for them? School should be a place that encourages free thinking. It shouldn’t exist to crank out mass numbers of graduates, it should challenge us to actually do what we come here to do: learn. That’s what separates the talented teachers from the ordinary ones here at Lafayette. The ones that show up not for the paycheck, but actually to guide the future of America. All of my favorite teachers have challenged and encouraged me to the point where it’s not even about grades anymore, it’s about improving myself and not letting that teacher down. An outstanding teacher challenges you to ask why. And asking why is the first step to protecting your rights and making change. That is what it means to be a student. Learn and ask questions so you’re prepared to leave your mark on the world.

Just asking... photo opinion

This month the Image asks “What’s your favorite winter activity?”

Photo opinion compiled by Brooke Thibodaux and Brett Hamlin

Carissa Sanchez, 9 “Ice skating, because it’s an activity you can do alone or with friends.”

Jake Welchans, 10 “Owning my brother, Caleb, in snowball fights.”

Hannah Hamby, 11 “������������������������ Throwing snowballs with dangerous stuff in the middle! Like rocks.”�

Aaron Raidt, 12 “����������������������� I used to play hockey.”�

Associate Principal John Shaugnessy “��������������������� Receiving that early morning phone call telling me we have a snow day.”�


page 4 • campus

bits& pieces

news at a glance

•compiled by Alex Davis and Sydney Miller

Five make All-Suburban Band

Students from around the St. Louis suburban area have auditioned for spots in the elite All-Suburban Band. Five LHS students were selected. They include seniors Nick Flynn, trombone; Jill Kuanfung, clarinet; Rebekah Woolverton, percussion; sophomores Kelly Joyce, flute and Kayla Sanchez, french horn. The auditions for All-Suburban were Nov. 6 and auditions for Missouri All-State Band will be held Dec. 16. “If they earn a spot in the All-State Band, they will go to the Missouri Music Educators Convention at the Lake of the Ozarks in Jan. to rehearse and perform with the All-State Ensemble,” band director Mr. Brad Balog said. The All-Suburban Band will perform at Pattonville High School on Jan. 7, at 2 p.m.

Traveling art exhibit visits LHS

Although Diego Rivera’s three most popular works, Sueno de una Tarde Dominical en la Alameda, El Agitador and El Vendendor de Alcatraces, are housed in Mexico, Mr. Brian Reed, foreign language teacher, was able to bring replications to LHS. “It’s impossible to take a field trip to Mexico and I wanted the students to be able to see first hand what it would be like to travel and see it in a museum,” Reed said. He required students to examine and critique the artwork and encouraged them to bring family and friends to see the replications. The pieces of artwork were shown Nov. 16-21. “It was phenomenal. I heard so much feedback from so many people. It generated conversation between people who normally wouldn’t talk to each other. It became a huge school conversation piece,” he said.

Second Annual Hot Hoops

The Second Annual Hot Hoops, scheduled for Dec. 15, is looking to be “better than last year,” Board Director Mary Battenberg said. Last year’s main attraction, National League Most Valuable Player (MVP), Ryan Howard, Class of 1998, is hoping to return this year and make another appearance at the party after the Lafayette vs. Marquette basketball game tonight. Tickets cost $10 at the door. The party has five bands booked, possibly including one returning band from last year’s Hot Hoops event. There are 85 door prizes and an expanded food buffet. “There will be a lot of other fun things,” Battenberg said.

Rockwood earns national award

After efforts to promote a safer school environment, the Rockwood School District was awarded the 2006 District of Character Award on Oct. 27. The district was featured in the annual National Schools of Character publication and received a $2,000 award. Character education efforts encourage academic as well as social growth of students, and have been ongoing for the past six years.

fyi

dec. 15, 2006

activities at a glance (compiled by students in Writing & Reporting)

Key Club

This winter Key Club adopted two families through Adopt-aFamily and donated winter apparel for Goodwill. Key Club also wrapped gifts at the Barnes and Noble for the Rockwood School Foundation. The club is offering assistance to teachers who need any help after school. Those teachers who are interested please contact Key Club sponsor Mr. Jay Buck.

ROTC

On Nov. 18, the Air Force Junior Reserved Officer Training Corps (AFJROTC) attended a drill meet in Lake Worth, FL. The Exhibition Drill team won second place. Senior Ryan Senciboy won first place commander, while sophomore Jasmine Wicks earned the best commander score.

Black Student Union

The Black Student Union (BSU) will be hosting study hall sessions throughout Dec. in the Writing Center. BSU members having been planning an end of the semester party. The party will include games, activities and a dance.

Bowling Team

photo • Rachel Bader

•Traditional Cheer. Participants at the Holiday Showcase on Dec. 6-7 take place in the traditional Wassail toast. “It’s a traditional toast that promotes happiness and good cheer during the holidays,” senior Meghan McManamey said.

Tom Ackley, John Curley, Mickey Luberda, Tim Maness and sophomore Brent Folan.

District Choir

The bowling team consists of two teams. For three consecutive weeks, Team One has placed first in their league. Team One members include senior Eric Breyer, juniors Jeff Bohling, Nick Elwood, John Ferry and Chuck Voelkel. Team Two consists of juniors

Seniors Chris Clayman, Pat Collins, Kate Dianora, Tyler Filmore, Alexis Kinney, John Kinney, Alex Lehman, Austin Najar, Megan Renner, David Sajewich and Nikki Staszak and juniors Campbell Bird, Parry Hough, Allison Krebs, Shannon Nicholson and Elizabeth Rogers were selected for District Choir.

Each school is able to send eight people to audition for soprano, alto, tenor and bass parts in the All-District Choir. Auditions were held Oct. 7. Students had to sight read, prepare a solo piece and sing a piece of music with four parts. All-State auditions were held Oct. 24 at Hazelwood Central. Rogers was one of four altos selected as an All-State member and she will perform in January at the Missouri Music Education Conference at TanTara Resort.

Happy Holidays! *16957 Old Manchester Road * Wildwood, MO * 636.458.9449*

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news • page 5

the image

Head Custodian to retire after 24 years Joe Trimberger takes over Mansker’s position Dec. 31 Britt Peters • News Editor At 6 a.m. when most students are waking up for school, Head Custodian Paul Mansker opens up the building to start his possibly eight-hour day. Mansker makes sure that things are running as they should and that the school is clean on a daily basis. After 24 years and two months as Head Custodian, Mansker is retiring. “I’m tired, I’m old, and its time to go…I’m burnt out, enough years, I’m just burnt out,” Mansker said. When he was laid off 25 years ago, Mansker was not even thinking about becoming a custodian. “Personally, if someone would have told me I was going to be Head of Cus-

todians for 24 years I would have laughed and thought ‘I’m not going to do that. Who wants to do that?’ And here I am,” Mansker said. Mansker started in a career in iron working. Unfortunately, after losing his job, Mansker was looking for work. “I was doing the Mr. Mom thing at home and mowing the grass and washing the windows ten times a week and I was driving myself and my wife nuts so I had to do something,” Mansker said. A friend of Mansker’s who worked for Rockwood introduced him to the job. “He said their [district] was always looking for someone at school. So I temporarily went over there at the old school and the next thing you know I got pro-

moted and here I am,” Mansker said. Mansker has grown up with the school, teachers and staff. “I’ve seen great teachers and students come through here, I wouldn’t work anywhere else in the district. It’s either Lafayette or nothing and that’s what it’s been,” Mansker said. Drivers Education teacher Boyd Manne was a sophomore in high school when Mansker was a custodian. “That’s when I go, ‘Paul, it’s time to go’ because now he’s the head football coach so its time to go,” Mansker said. Mansker will receive a pension and paid sick days after his retirement. “I’m going to miss many moments, mostly making some of the big events run

smoothly…generally everything in the school,” Mansker said. The only thing Mansker won’t miss will be the period when the company Marriott took over management at the Facilities Department. “That was the worst two years of our lives, Marriott was running the school down the drain, they had no concept of what to do,” Mansker said. Principal Larry Schmidt helped hire the future Head of Custodians, Joe Trimberger who was previously Head of Custodians at Fairway Elementary school. “He has a month to learn the building. The first two weeks he will learn the second shift and the last two weeks he will learn the day shift,” Schmidt said. Mansker’s last day will be Dec. 31.

Access Denied: continued from page 1

Internet filters protect students from harmful websites “I was hoping that since I was complying with what the district wanted, that they wouldn’t block my site, because there are some fun things on there like Linerider,” Knoop said. He noticed a decline in use immediately after it was blocked, but a week after the ban, the site gets more hits than ever. According to Google Analytics, a utility that Knoop uses to monitor his site’s statistics, his site averaged 647 hits per weekday since Nov. 27, with weekend use being much less. Students are finding a way to get onto Knoop’s site, even after the block. “We don’t encourage or allow students to circumvent that [Internet filter] on their own, because now students can access anything. “[Using the proxy to circumvent the system is] directly against the school district policy,” Assistant Principal

Mike Knoop, 12 photo • Kevin Pinney

Matt Dieckhaus said. And there’s no shortage of computer use policy in the Rockwood Student Hand Book. There are nearly five pages pertaining to the proper use of district technology, along with consequences for misuse. The administration clarified that going around the filter could possibly be viewed as insubordination, because the student is not following a “reasonable request or regulation”. “We could throw the whole range of consequences

from the handbook as far as violation of technology. You could never use a computer again in your tenure here at Lafayette,” Assistant Principal Tim Jones said. Sticking to the rules stated in the Student Handbook, which “requires students and employees to maintain consistently high levels of personal responsibility”, there have never been any reports of students using a proxy to gain access to inappropriate material. “We don’t have 15 technology people monitoring people right now. We’ve got kids bringing drugs and fighting. We’re not actively going out trying to catch kids,” Jones said. But why does the district have such strict filters for the high schools? “As we move over to Microsoft from Novell [for our network], we’ll be more able to adjust what

high schools get,” Director of Instructional Technology Will Blaylock said. The district also receives $460,000 annually from E-rate, a government incentive program, for complying with The Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA). CIPA, which Congress passed in 2000, requires schools to have an internet filter that blocks out content deemed inappropriate for children. However, what may be inappropriate for children may be necessary for research. “I had to find a pro-anorexia site, which all of them were blocked,” senior Ann Maryniak said. That’s when she said Knoop’s site came in handy. “I’m mad about it [the block]. It’s useful for school purposes. I’ve only used it during study hall or at lunch when it’s my own time,” Maryniak said. She’s not the only one using it for school. “I’ve used it to get to YouTube for a project in Contemporary Issues about Howard Dean,” senior Zach Westfall said. “I used it to find fashion articles for my Fashion I class because any site with the word fashion in it is blocked,” senior Ashlen Snellen said. However, other students like the filter for different reasons. “I waited in line for two days for a PS3. No filter is going to stop me from playing my games,” senior Ethan Moore said. School officials realize no filter is perfect, and in the future it will be less strict on the high school level. “You’re here to learn and to participate in the learning process,” Dieckhaus said.


page 6 • news

dec. 15, 2006

Welcome Center project on schedule Some classes report disruption due to resulting cold, noise Sydney Miller • Reporter With construction continuing in the front of the building on the new Welcome Center, some classrooms in the area are having difficulty adjusting to the noise. As to when the project will be completed, Principal Larry Schmidt said everything is on schedule and that weather will dictate the completion date. “Some permits were late in arriving which pushed [construction] off [from] Oct. into Nov., but it wasn’t that much later, like a week or two or something like that,” Schmidt said. Schmidt said a new Welcome Center is needed because renovations to the Theater, which will begin after the Welcome Center project, will cause the current Welcome Center and Nurse’s Office space to be lost for a year and a half. “[Activities Director Steve Miller’s ]office will need to be moved because it is in the construction area of the Theater. But when it’s all completed, this [his old office space] will become an additional classroom available for us,” Schmidt said. However, not everyone thinks the project should have been a priority. For example, Language Arts teacher Ms. Jean Peters compares the situation to one of needs and wants. Peters believes additional classrooms are a need, and a new Welcome Center is strictly a want. “I feel like it’s window dressing. Of course [the new Welcome Center will]

be a nicer welcoming statement to the community, but what we need are more classrooms. Many teachers do not have a permanent classroom,” Peters said. “In my mind, those were necessities.” The construction will not interfere with any school activities or events, although teachers have also said there is some difficulty with teaching and contrentrating during the loud construction. Peters said, “It’s gotten so loud my students couldn’t concentrate. We’ve had to leave my room.” It was rumored the heating system has been broken during the construction. Mr. Mark Voss, on-site director for the project, said this is not the case. “This structure [the roof of the overhanging] is exposed to the elements. We ripped the ceiling out, which was insulated. So the ceiling is not insulated now, so it’s probably a little cooler,” Voss said. Still, Schmidt said the project is a worthwhile investment of time and resources. “When the Welcome Center is complete, a person entering the building will be in the foyer area. They will enter through separate doors to our reception area and our attendance office. The Nurse’s Office will also have a separate entrance and can be entered without going through the Welcome Center,” he said. The overhang in front of the building will stay the same size and the window in

photo • Ashley Edlund

•Just The Beginning. Efforts to improve the building progress as construction continues on Lafayette’s new Welcome Center. Rockwood Assistant Superintendent Dennis Griffith said a large portion of Proposition K bond issue funds are going toward Lafayette’s three major construction projects: Theater, Welcome Center and Commons. The Welcome Center construction is expected to cost $700,000.

Social Studies Department Chair Susan Glenn’s room will look out onto a courtyard leading to the main entrance. The construction is expected to end in late Feb. or early March. Shortly thereafter, the construction on the Theater will begin. “Our construction schedule calls for one project to be completed before the next project begins. So there will be something going on all the time but they don’t

want multiple projects going on at one time. They want to be able to complete something and then move to something else,” Schmidt said. Despite some criticism, there are many who are excited about the improvements. “The construction is beneficial to the school,” sophomore Nicolette Kowalewski said. “It helps visitors who are new or unfamiliar to Lafayette actually find a main entrance to the school.”

Empowe(RED) products hope to address world AIDS crisis Matt Hibbard • Asst. News Editor Approximately 38 million people, including more than one million Americans, are living with HIV/AIDS. With about 3.1 million deaths worldwide, AIDS is set to become the third cause of death behind heart disease and stroke. This year’s World AIDS Day theme was accountability. Already putting the theme into action, U2 singer and activist Bono and Chairman of DATA (Debt, AIDS, Trade, Africa) Bobby Shiever have created (PRODUCT) RED. This “economic initiative”, which launched in the U.S. on Oct. 13, aims to engage business and consumer power in the fight against AIDS in Africa. “The idea is simple, the products are sexy and people live instead of die. It’s consumer power at work for those who have no power at all,” Bono said in a (PRODUCT) RED press release. The campaign hopes to “change history by writing the future. Consumers can tap into the commerce to do something amazing and unprecedented,” Shiever said. With an organization centered on iconic brands, the color red among all the products symbolizes the immediate emergency African nations, such as Ethiopia, Nigeria and China.

In order to connect with (PRODUCT) RED’s intended audience, MTV Networks joined as the first media sponsor to help build the brand and create awareness. A unique aspect is its ability to incorporate a variety of brands. From clothing outlets like GAP and Giorgio Armani to technology giants like Apple and Motorola, PRODUCT (RED) meets any consumer’s taste. Several big names have promoted it including Steven Spielberg, Jennifer Garner and Chris Rock. Gold Medalist Shaun White answered questions in a web chat room concerning his involvement in (PRODUCT) RED. He talked about the difference between (PRODUCT) RED and other charities. “I really feel the campaign is different because it’s not a charity because it’s sustainable,” White said. As the holiday season nears White stressed the power teenage consumers have to make an impact in Africa. “I feel like people around my age have a chance right now to get involved with something that changes the way companies promote products,” White said. He ended his chat room by saying, “(PRODUCT) RED just started, if you guys pull together and get other people involved and give support—then who knows what can happen.”

(PRODUCT) RED Items For Sale •GAP -limited edition clothing like T-shirts, hooded sweatshirts and accessories with 50 percent of profits going to the Global Fund -book entitled Individuals, which showcases GAP ads •Converse -limited edition shoes designed by U.K. designer Giles Deacon with 10 percent of PRODUCT (RED) sales going to the Global Fund -introducing “Make Mine RED” allowing customers to custom design any Converse (PRODUCT) RED Chuck Taylor Canvas Hi and Low top shoes with 15 percent of the sales going to the Global Fund •Giorgio Armani -products including jackets, sweatshirts, jeans and accessories with an average of 40 percent of sales going to the Global Fund •Apple -contributing $10 from each limited edition iPod (PRODUCT) RED nano •Motorola -featuring the RED Motorazr and RED Bluetooth H500 headset with $17 and $5 respectively to the Global Fund

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the image

Cursive: a lost art form

features • page 7

Brooke Thibodaux • Reporter

Penmanship is not only a practicality but it is an art form. Neat handwriting ensures an impression of one’s personality. Cursive handwriting is an important skill that allows fast and beautiful flow between letters. Too few in today’s society use cursive writing rather than print, making it rare. Only 8.5 percent of the student body uses cursive, while the remaining 91.5 percent use print. “I use print because it’s easier, faster and everyone uses it. I used it [cursive] in middle school a lot, but then I stopped,” junior Jeremy Studt said. On the handwritten essay portion of the SAT 15 percent of 1.5 million test takers used cursive. According to the College Board, SAT essays written in cursive scored higher than print. “I like cursive because it’s pretty, it’s faster and easier. It’s different and it’s a small way to separate yourself,” sophomore Keely McCaskie said. It is common for middle school and high school students to use print rather than cursive. On the other hand, it was a universal trend in the 1940s and 1950s for everyone to use cursive. Classes of the time would spend two hours each week practicing their penmanship. In fact, until the 1970s, cursive writing was its own class. With the tide changing due to technology, teachers spend less time on cursive. “People

don’t write letters any more, they don’t communicate with written word. It [technology] has a huge influence,” language arts teacher Ms. Tracy Gladden said. “Part of the reason that there is not an emphasis on it is because our curriculum does not contain it. Our state does not require it and because our curriculum is crowded with other standards that relate to reading, writing, speaking, listening and researching, there just isn’t time,” Ms. Kathy Ryan, Rockwood’s curriculum director, said. Rockwood’s curriculum requires students to learn cursive writing starting in second and third grade until fifth grade. Abby Parker, a third grade student in Ms. Marylyn Luther’s class at Babler Elementary likes cursive. She said, “I think it’s really fun if the words aren’t too hard.” However, after fifth grade, students are never required to use cursive again. “If you don’t use it, then sometimes you forget how to do it,” Luther said. With practice or requirement, the loss of cursive writing may never occur. “During my parents’ era, they had to write in cursive all the time, all through school and as computers came around it wasn’t important because you didn’t have to have this formalized wonderful paper in cursive,” Assistant Principal Jodi Davidson said.

Technology plays a role to the higher use of print as well. “No one cares [about the use of cursive] because there is typing…older people use it more because they didn’t have technology,” sophomore Chris Powell said. Children see print more and more, prior to cursive on computers, television and advertisements. By seeing a higher use of print, children are more likely to use print rather than cursive. However, it still is an important skill for students to learn. “It helps teachers grade your paper better but that’s about it,” junior Tyler George said. Legibility of one’s handwriting is beneficial for presentation and first time impressions in the real world. “After you grade 120 essays it’s tiring and wears on your eyes,” Gladden said. “I think it’s a skill and nice handwriting is a lost art.” In today’s society cursive has become rare, but it is still an important skill for students to learn for their own benefit. Luther said, “I think everybody needs to learn cursive just because when you write, you are communicating and I actually find when people use cursive, it’s nicer handwriting than printing. It’s easier once you learn it because it flows easier… It’s a style of communication everyone should know how to do it.”

Do you write in cursive?

8.5% write in cursive 91.5% write in print 200 students polled

•Taking Note. (left) Practicing her “Z” in cursive, third grader Abby Parker concentrates on the letter form. The students were taught the shape before practicing on their own at their tables. •Learning The Basics. (top) Educating her third grade class, Ms. Marylyn Luther demonstrates the basics of cursive with the newest technology. Using a voice amplifier, Luther is able to teach her lesson at the leisure of a low voice. •Writing It Out. (bottom) Using the SMARTboard, Luther helps a student understand the cursive alphabet. This device allows Ms. Luther to illustrate letters and lets the kids practice their cursive in another way. photos • Nicole Castellano

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page 8 • features

M E A N I N L I GH TS HE R

Kendall Brewer • Reporter Jona Xiao is an ordinary senior with an extraordinary job: she’s an actress. Xiao will be featuring in Alice, a family film scheduled for release in Spring 2007. The movie is about 13-year-old Alice McKinley who has to adjust to moving to a new town in addition to coping with the loss of her mother. It is a coming-of-age movie about the average girl next door. Alyson Stoner, who starred in Cheaper by the Dozen, plays Alice. The film also stars Lucas Grabeel as Lester, who is Alice’s irresponsible older brother. Grabeel is known for his role as Ryan Evans in High School Musical. “Alyson Stoner, I was very impressed with her. She is so tiny and she is so witty. Whenever the cameras are on or off, she has this quality about her. Lucas is very professional, and a very sweet guy. It was very fun filming with them,” Xiao said. Xiao plays Loretta, Lester’s girlfriend. Loretta is featured in five scenes, and has a big scene where she blows up at Lester for cheating on her. “I was nervous trying out for Alice because I really wanted the role. I tried out for two parts, Loretta and her friend. Lester cheats on both of them. I really wanted the part of Loretta, and made my boyfriend read the part of the cheating boyfriend. I got to give him a mean glare a few times,” Xiao said. Xiao’s boyfriend of three years, senior Chris Kottwitz, helps her practice for auditions by reading the script over the phone. Kottwitz does not feel as if her acting gets in the way of their relationship, except for the times when she is busy. “I think it’s really awesome dating an actress. I get to hear what all of her acting friends are like and when she meets big name people I get to hear whether they are nice or not,” he said. “I also get to go to cast parties. The Alice wrap-up party was in the Cardinal’s Clubhouse and we went on a tour. I love seeing her movies when they are finished,” Kottwitz added. Alice was filming in Kirkwood and around St. Louis. The movie was shot Oct. 9 and finished Nov. 12. “The week we shot was one of the busi-

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Jona Xiao juggles tough classes, the stress that goes with choosing a college and acting in a major Hollywood movie

•photos courtesy of Jinhua Xiao

•Acting It Out. Practicing lines, receiving make-up application and talking with the director, Senior Jona Xiao shoots on set. Filming took 35 days, which meant long days and long nights for Xiao, as she balanced her acting career and education.

est weeks of my life. In addition to homework and my classes, I was also involved in a theater production. I woke up at 6:50 a.m. We shot from 7 in the morning until 6 p.m. at night. Right after that, I had to go to my dress rehearsal for the play, which was at 7 p.m. Those lasted until midnight, and I then went to bed.” Although there are busy periods, acting does not interfere with Xiao’s school or social life. She is involved in Lacrosse, Key Club, Quiz Bowl, NHS, Mu Alpha Theta and Senior Advisory in addition to acting. She has a grade point average that is a little below a 4.5 in all AP classes. “People look at me, and they see that I am Asian and I get decent grades. They think that I must have no life and that I go home to study for eight hours each night.

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My life isn’t like that. I have to budget my time, but I also think that is very important to have time to relax,” Xiao said. Not only does Xiao’s ethnicity make her a target for stereotypes, but it also influences the roles she receives for jobs. “Usually some of the roles that are offered to girls of my age are for daughters. Since I am Asian, the cast would also need Asian parents. Because of this, I usually play the role of the best friend. I learned you have to expand the types of roles you can play, so people don’t just see you as a typical Asian actress. It’s been harder, but there are still roles available,” Xiao said. None of this stops Xiao from acting. She began her acting career in middle school. Realizing her passion for acting, she started auditioning for various com-

munity plays and films. “I used to be such a dork. Each day, I looked at the clock every hour or so, and I was like ‘Okay, five more hours until play rehearsal.’ I found a passion for acting.” Xiao has more than acting to think about this year; soon she will be going to college. Xiao plans to major in either business or psychology. “I want to go to a good university in Chicago, Los Angeles or New York, and maybe have a business degree. I would only do acting on the side. I don’t want to pay a lot of money to go to a good acting school and then not get a job,” she said. With college just around the corner, tension between Xiao and her parents is starting to form. “I get frustrated because my dad wants me to go to Harvard. It is important to find a college that fits. My number one choice right now is University of Southern California because I can be in Los Angeles and do my thing. Most of the time my dad and I are okay though,” Xiao said. She said her parents would prefer she has a passion for her academics. “My dad and I have had a lot of arguments about this. In middle school, I was like, ‘Dad, I like to act.’ He would just be like, ‘That is nice Jona, now go study.’ He just thought it was a goofy little hobby, and that I would grow out of it. I haven’t gotten over acting. They are supportive, and they aren’t against it; they just wish I was more focused on my studies,” Xiao said. Xiao believes her parents want her to act only as a hobby. Xiao’s mother said she doesn’t fully understand her daughter’s roles because of the language barrier; she still tries to support her daughter. “She loves acting very much and she is very good at it. She will continue to act in the future,” she said. No matter how far with acting Xiao goes, she surely has a passion for it. For now, Xiao is thinking about Alice, and is very excited to see the finished product. “I haven’t really read the whole script for Alice. I just looked at my scenes and memorized my lines. It will be neat to see what happens in the movie,” Xiao said.


features • page 9

Alternative Energy Students find other ways to drink caffeine the image

Brian Ruyle • Reporter Sometimes coffee just doesn’t do it. However, energy drinks are providing a new alternative for students. “I love the taste and how they make me feel,” senior Clayton Lamberth, who drinks around four a Rockstars a week, said. Energy drinks were introduced in 1985 with the release of Jolt Cola, which carried the powerful slogan “Twice the Caffeine.” Even today, a 16 oz. Jolt contains the same amount of caffeine as two cups of coffee. Due to the popularity of Red Bull, a number of companies have begun to market their own energy drinks. Each company markets their refreshment as the best of the rest, packing everything the consumer needs to feel revitalized and mentally relieved, armed with taglines such as “Unleash the Beast” and “Party like a Rockstar”, which are found on Monster Energy and Rockstar, respectively. “I drink Rockstar before high energy situations like cheerleading,” senior Kelsey Schubach said. During cheerleading season, Schubach said she drank around three or four a week. According to Beverage-Digest.com, Red Bull and Monster Energy, the leading energy drinks, sold 42.3 million and 19.0

million cases, respectively, in 2005. The popularity has reached LHS, where students indulge in their favorite drinks. “I’m completely addicted to Monster Energy,” junior Emily Black said. Energy drinks are available at most convenience stores, and were even available at the School Store until it was forced to stop selling them due to a contract breach with Coca-Cola. “The drinks gave me the extra boost I needed after my aerobics class,” senior Allison Hancock said. When the drinks were available at school, Mr. Scott Sissom, business teacher, said he sold around 50 a day. “Kids tend to enjoy energy drinks the same way adults enjoy

coffee,” Sissom said. Sissom is working to bring the drinks back to the School Store. In order for the consumer to obtain the self-proclaimed “boost” many of the drinks offer, a number of ingredients must be added, some of which are in extremely high doses, according to www.softpedia.com Caffeine, the most widely consumed drug in America, is added in high amounts to most energy drinks. When a user consumes too much caffeine, effects include restlessness, insomnia and muscle twitching, among others. Taurine is a chemical substance whose name is originally derived from ox bile, and is a common additive to many energy drinks not concerned. Even though energy drinks pose risks, many students refuse to give them up. “I am well aware of what [the drinks] could do to me, but they give me the energy I need to successfully complete my day,” Senior Alex

Beverage Breakdown 8.4 Oz. Amp Energy 120 Calories 30 grams sugar 31 grams carbohydrates 70 mg sodium 75 mg caffeine

16 oz. Full Throttle 220 calories 58 grams of sugar 56 grams carbohydrates 140 mg sodium 144 mg caffeine

16 oz. Monster Energy 200 calories 54 grams sugar 54 grams carbohydrates 360 mg sodium 160 mg caffeine

16 oz. Rockstar 260 calories 60 grams of sugar 62 grams carbohydrates 120 mg sodium 160 mg caffeine

Homework: not all it’s ‘worked up’ to be

Alfie Kohn’s recent publication challenges the effectiveness of homework, LHS teachers, students weigh in Aaron Casias • Reporter Homework. As any high school student will agree, it is a time-consuming and stress-inducing task. However, most see it as a necessary part of the educational process. Without it, students will never learn time management, responsibility and comprehensive skills essential to surviving in the real world. Or will they? Educator and journalist Alfie Kohn, author of The Homework Myth, is very outspoken about his belief that today’s homework methods are not only ineffective, but in some cases, completely useless. Kohn’s research makes a case and point for a reconstruction of homework methods as well as the amount of work being given to children. “Even in high school there’s only a modest correlation between time spent on homework and achievement--with little reason to think that the achievement was caused by doing more homework,” Kohn said in a recent interview for EducationNews.org. According to an article in the Regional Educational Laboratory at nwrel.org,

homework’s main purpose should be to “practice, reinforce or apply newly-acquired skills and knowledge and to learn necessary skills of independent study.” The problem, Kohn said, is in the approach, teachers often take in assigning homework. The most strongly attacked subject is mathematics. “Just like practicing for a game, you have to do homework to prepare yourself,” math teacher Ms. Becky Boehmer said. The drill-and-practice method that is often practiced on homework in math classes is, in Kohn’s opinion, ineffective at teaching basic skills necessary for understanding. Kohn believes teachers need to stress meaning and logic behind the solutions to problems instead of drilling students until responses are automatic. “When I learn something, I would rather know the underlying concepts so I could apply those to a bigger picture,” junior Derek Brinkmeyer said. “Lots of practice can help some students get better at remembering an answer, but will not help them get better at, or even accustomed to, thinking,” Kohn said.

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The question is, what options do teachers have in assigning homework? The aforementioned homework article by the Regional Educational Laboratory gives several guidelines for assigning relative, beneficial assignments for students. One rule stresses on never giving homework as punishment or no homework as a reward. “There is always time in class to do homework, so you shouldn’t have any if you use your time wisely,” science teacher Ms. Mandy Kotraba said. However, the article said research shows teachers “usually underestimate the time necessary for students to complete homework.” Kohn suggests “any theoretical benefit of practice homework must be weighed against the effect it has on students’ interest in learning.” The Rockwood School District currently does not have a set standard for grading homework that has been approved by the Board of Education. However, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction Kathy Peckron said there is currently a district committee working on creating a “grading and assessment” policy to be approved by

the Board within the next year. Furthermore, another question that comes up is, if there is so much evidence to support a lack of homework, why is it still being assigned as heavily as it is? The answer, Kohn said, is homework is rarely looked at from the perspective of the student to which it is being assigned. “Instead,” Kohn said, “kids are regarded as inert objects to be acted on: Make them practice and they’ll get better.” Kohn also argues that more homework will not produce more learning in students. “Teachers don’t have deadlines. If they saw things from a student’s perspective, they would see that it’s a lot of hard work,” junior Sarah Pitkin said. With the effort to rid homework from our schools, one would get the idea that this would simply lead to more free time and delinquency in students. In fact, Kohn said schools have given up on standard homework assigning have found that their students have more time to pursue subjects of interest such as after school activities as well as other learning activities. “If I had more free time, I would pursue music more,” junior Jeremy Studt said.

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page 10 • in-depth

dec. 15, 2006

Cars need special winter season TLC Sarah Southerland • In-Depth Editor

It always pays to be well prepared for the unpredictable winter months. To better your safety for the upcoming months, winterizing your car is a must. The following is a list of certain things you should check because, who knows what the unpredictable weather of St. Louis will bring. 1. Check to make sure

the battery level is strong.

A weak battery may get you by in the summer, but it will not handle colder months. 2. Check the antifreeze. Most antifreezes have low-freezing and high-boiling points. An-

tifreeze has other chemicals that lubricate and inhibit the engine. These wear out and so antifreeze should be replaced every two years of 30,000 miles. 3. Check the motor oil. Most manufacturers have seasonal oil recommendations. Check your owners’ manual for the recommended wintergrade oil. Due to the decrease in weight, it helps the car run smoother. 4. Check your tires. A good amount of thread will give you better grip. Look at the grooves in your tires and make sure that they have not worn down. The

installment of snow tires is also a possibility. Adding weight to your trunk will counter the problem of skidding. 5. Check your windshield

wipers and washer solvents.

Most washer solvents are good to about 10 below zero. Whenever you park your car while it is snowing, raise you wipers off of the windshield of your car. This prevents the wipers from freezing to your windshield. 6. Check under the hood. All fluids should be checked and topped off. The lights should be in working order. The radiator should be checked for cracks.

What every car should carry •Flashlight with spare batteries •Ice scraper/brush for clearing your windshield •Warning devices - flares or triangles •Jumper cables •Blanket •First Aid Kit •Nonperishable food, water •Cloth or roll of paper towels •Traction mats •Small bag of abrasive material - sand, salt or kitty litter

Date of issue: Client: Size: Colors: photo • Alexis Myers •Ice Age. Students walk to their cars to discover a sheet of ice blanketing Pictures: their windshields. Students were released early from school on Nov. 30 because of an ice storm. Logos: Copy: 1/4 ad size 4.916 x 5.6

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in-depth • page 11

the image

Walking in a Winter Wonderland

Local attractions offer entertainment for students

photo • Sarah Southerland

•Light Bright. One of the many displays that line the mile-long route. Winter Wonderland uses over a million lights each year to light up Tilles Park.

Sarah Southerland • In-Depth Editor Millions of lights are illuminating the St. Louis area, diffusing seasonal excitement and holiday cheer. Tilles Park’s Winter Wonderland offers carriage rides for a romantic date, while Santa’s Magical Kingdom at Jellystone National Park appeals to the young at heart. Winter Wonderland has enchanted over 2 million visitors and will celebrate its 21st season through Jan. 1. Over a million lights and over 100 luminescent displays line the mile-long route inside 75 acres of Tilles Park. The park is open evenings Sunday through Friday for vehicular traffic and carriage rides. Saturdays are closed to vehicles and reserved for carriage rides only. Senior Kelly Druker took a group of friends on a carriage ride for her birthday. “I really love Christmas and the holidays,” Druker said. “It was fun being wrapped in blankets while drinking hot chocolate.” Since the sparkle of lights seems to al-

ways draw a crowd, carriage reservations are required. Horse drawn carriage rides are available every night except for Christmas Eve and New Years Eve and ticket prices vary depending on the type of carriage and number of riders. On the other hand, many will find that few can resist the old-school charm of Santa’s Magical Kingdom. Santa’s Magical Kingdom is a drive through light display with two million lights and state of the art lighting animation. It is the only light show in St. Louis with two tunnels; its massive display is sure to provide enough holiday overload to last a season. A portion of the proceeds from Santa’s Magical Kingdom benefits the Children’s Miracle Network. In addition, you can save $3 by bringing in an unwrapped toy Monday through Thursday. The toys are given to the St. Louis Homeless Resource Center and help children from the St. Louis area celebrate Christmas. Santa’s Magical Kingdom will shine brightly until Jan. 2.

Whether it’s the action-packed, adrenaline-pumping fun of skiing and snow boarding, or the more relaxing fun of ice skating, Hidden Valley Ski Resort in Eureka and Steinberg Skating Rink in Forest Park are two outdoor locations for St. Louisans to enjoy during the winter. The opening day of ski season will be Dec. 16. Ski season usually runs from mid-December to early March, weather permitting. In addition, Hidden Valley has several holiday specials you can enjoy over winter break. All trails are lighted for night skiing. Hidden Valley offers night skiing every evening and midnight skiing on Fridays and Saturdays beginning in late Dec. There are also special Sunday late night sessions scattered about. While lift tickets and rentals vary per session, season passes are available. Season passes are especially helpful for the more avid skiers. Sophomore Tyler Sellers goes to Hidden Valley about four to five times per week. “I try to go everyday I can, assuming I don’t have too much homework,” Sellers said. “It’s a great stress reliever, especially during finals.” Don’t worry if you don’t know how to

ski or snowboard, lessons are available. In fact, many would consider Hidden Valley to be an excellent place to learn. “Hidden Valley gives people a chance to ski on smaller, easier terrain before making the transfer to actual mountains,” junior Chris McCoy said. They have even added a new “Wonder Carpet” to the Easy Street beginner run which will enable beginners to get up the hill without having to hold onto a rope, making it an easier, more enjoyable experience. Among the “Wonder Carpet”, Hidden Valley has gotten a new quad chair, two new black diamond runs, a new intermediate run and a new beginner run. Steinberg Skating Rink in Forest Park, another excellent option, has been a St. Louis tradition for nearly 50 years. Starting Dec. 15, Steinberg will remain open until midnight each night until Jan. 1. The entrance fee covers the entire day and is $6 for adults, although season passes are available. Skate rental is $2. The rink, which is the largest outdoor rink in the Midwest, has undergone a $1.4 million renovation, improving the rink surface, lights, sound system and landscaping.

photo • Sarah Southerland

•Silver Blades. During the day, the rink is filled with skaters of all ages. Steinberg Skating Rink in Forest Park has been a St. Louis tradition for almost 50 years.

Inclement Weather Information:

“Due to inclement weather, there will be no school Friday, Dec. 1. All district offices will be closed.” Nina Walters • Reporter For the first time in three years, classes were celebrating. A snow day had happened. Rockwood Superintendent Craig Larson called a snow day due to ice. “Ice is the primary danger in driving in St. Louis or anywhere. We decided to dismiss early to allow buses and students who drive to get home and off the streets before traffic became bad,” Larson said. When calling off school, Assistant Superintendent Dennis Griffith, Larson and several other people drive around roads of Rockwood to see what the weather is like at various points in the district. This is done because “student and employee safety is always what is being considered when calling off school,” Larson said. District policy states that the safety of the people who work in the area is the main concern and to give employees who do work on snow days, sometimes maintenance and administrators, an additional hour and a half to get to work. Students have different superstitions in order to “create” a snow day. Junior Nick Battenberg believes you can’t talk about having one or it will be jinxed. Sophomore Kelsie Klosterman

said, “I put my pajamas on inside-out and put a tangerine in the freezer every night, but if it doesn’t work I just give up.” When a snow day is called, social studies teacher, Mr. Jake Wilson said, “Some of the teachers get together and get work done, or I go to Art Hill.” Klosterman and freshman Tori Rigman like to spend time with friends, have hot chocolate and sit by the fire. Other schools have the same policy, including Clayton, Ladue and Webster Groves, yet they have less snow days. They don’t run school buses or have only a few buses that stay in a small area on residential streets, unlike the 150 buses Rockwood runs. One hundred seventy-four days is the fewest number of days required to attend school by any state. Even when all of the five snow days built into the school year aren’t used, they are still kept on the end of the year giving us a total of 180 days, six more than the necessary amount. Larson believes “reducing the length of the school year would give the teachers less instructional time with students. I view it is a good opportunity for more learning and a better education for students.”

photo • Kevin Pinney

•Ice Breaker. Clearing the pathway, custodian Mr. Joe Durr works to chip away at the thick layer of ice that formed. Although district workers attempted to clear the ice and snow, the night time custodians had to go out to clear the walk ways after several students fell on the way in and out of school.


page 12 • features

dec. 15, 2006

STAR initiates Party Pledge program Nancy Stiles • Reporter The Supporting Teens at Risk (STAR) program is perhaps best known for its Staff Development Day meetings which, in the past, caused students to rush to the Old Weight Room to guarantee an excused absence from short classes. “If kids are going to skip a class and sit in an auditorium and talk about peer issues that face them everyday and listen to me, then the message is being heard,” Associate Principal and STAR sponsor John Shaughnessy said. Recently, students were required to have tickets to attend a STAR meeting. Shaughnessy said, “The trust factor was established early. STAR’s not to get anybody in trouble, not to highlight all the things that are going on that are troubled issues—but it’s an opportunity.” When STAR first started in 2004, parents began calling Shaughnessy, asking how they could be involved. Here began

the LHS Parent Party Pledge Program: a support network for families in the community to know other parents who have the same beliefs that it is important to have a healthy lifestyle. Now in the third year of its implementation, the program has close to 300 families signed. Senior Daniel Flavin expressed indifference when his mother, Ms. Maggie Flavin, signed the pledge. “I don’t care,” Flavin said. “I don’t drink.” “I thought it was a good pledge,” a Lafayette parent, who wishes to remain anonymous, said. “I filled it out and signed it and I got so much harassment from my family about it that I didn’t turn it in.” The parent said she liked the wording of the pledge—“will not knowingly allow students to gather at your house and use alcohol”—because although she says she does everything in her power, like not keeping any alcohol in the house, she doesn’t

understand “why I should be responsible if a kid comes to my house and makes a bad choice.” “I think that teenagers do a lot of experimenting with alcohol and drugs in other areas as well and I wouldn’t consider it a problem; it’s something that’s going on in our society today and we’re trying to find a way here at school to deal with that,” Shaughnessy said. Although some people are apprehensive about privacy and whether the school should be involved in out-of-school activities, Shaughnessy remains confident in the positive endeavors of STAR. “I think it’s very healthy. It’s very positive and we’ve done some good things here and we’ll continue to do some good things in the future,” Shaughnessy said. “I’m proud to be part of STAR and I think it’s doing a real good job at Lafayette.” The anonymous parent said she has received calls from parents accusing her of providing

alcohol for their children. “ H e r daughter went home drunk and her mom called me the next morning and said I provided alcohol for her. But I didn’t. She brought it to my house in a water bottle all mixed up and I didn’t know,” she said. “I know it’s out there,” the parent continued. “So far I haven’t seen my daughter drunk. I make her come home on the weekends; they [teenagers] spend the night out so they can get away with it.” In addition to trying to monitor her daughter’s weekend activities, the parent promotes a

Illustration • Kate Webb

healthy lifestyle by not drinking herself. She said, “They’re going to do what they want to do no matter what. She has to make her own choices.”

“They’re just being normal American teenagers.” Normalcy often outweighs consequences of underage drinking Jen Apoian • Features Editor After a friend drove him home, he passed out on the floor in front of his parents. The junior student began drinking when he was 14. At first, he said, “it was more about social drinking. Once you get into it, you start really getting wasted.” Social drinking is usually a casual occasion, even for students. But after one hard drink becomes five, everything is intensified. The next morning, the consequence is often a one-day stay in the bathroom, hovering over the toilet. “Actually, I’ve only been hung-over a few times. I don’t usually get hung-over and I’ve never thrown up from drinking,” he said. Students argue teen drinking is simply a social occasion, like going to a football game. He said teen drinking is “no big deal.” With this mentality, the student admitted he consumed nine double shots of Captain Morgan, a brand of rum, and passed out. “They [my parents] grounded me, but they were still upset that I was being so stupid,” he said. “They kind of knew it was coming, and that it was normal. They knew I’d try it [alcohol] at some point.”

In fact, some parents unknowingly provide alcohol to their teens with bottles left in liquor cabinets or beer stored in the refrigerator. But experts agree the biggest problem is that parents convince themselves that drinking is typical in teenage culture, punishable by simple grounding. “Sadly enough, you’re the teenager—you know,” Resident Nurse Tim Harper said. Inside the busy Emergency Room of St. Luke’s Hospital, he sat between taking patients, and explained why consuming alcohol is so common among teenagers. Before coming to St. Luke’s Hospital, Harper worked at Centerpoint Hospital in the chemical dependency unit. “I think that answer probably varies. I don’t think there’s one reason,” he said. Then he sighed and added, “[they’re] just being normal American teenagers.” Harper explained the usual scenario. “The problem with teenagers is drinking a lot of liquor in a short period of time. They’ll grab a bottle of hard liquor and they’ll think they’re some tough macho person, and take a big swig out of it. They think they can take another big

swig out of the bottle [because they don’t feel drunk].” From then on, the alcohol absorbs into the blood stream. “So you might be drinking and drinking and have no effects from it, and then an hour and a half later, boom! all alcohol is just bursting in your blood stream and that’s when you have problems with people stopping breathing and their blood pressure will drop or their heart will stop,” Harper said. Resident Nurse Judy Cooke has worked at St. John’s Hospital, and is now employed at St. Luke’s Hospital. “Every time I did a shift [at St. John’s], there’d be three or four [drunk driving accidents]… more male than female,” she said. Every shift, she estimated two people died of drinking-related injuries. That’s four people in 12 hours. She explained the biggest predator was drunk driving. Harper said, “I’ve taken care of many people and I’ve had to talk to the parents and the family. It’s a horrible tragedy. I’ve walked into the quiet room with parents, and had them look up at me with this hope in their eyes. It’s like taking a baseball bat and

- Emergency Room Nurse Tim Harper

hitting them in the head. No, your child’s not okay. Your child is dead.” The risk is in the fact that teen drinking is considered normal. The junior described himself as a typical teenager, not one to rebel or act out. A poll conducted by the Image revealed 68 percent of students had tried alcohol or had gotten drunk. Thirty-two percent had never tried alcohol. Yet despite the numbers, nearly all students agreed drinking was commonplace—a sizable 97 percent. The junior said he drinks because “you just feel completely good.” He even said alcohol tastes good. Now more than ever, drinking starts at the start of high school. Freshman Principal Jodi Davidson said, “I’m so disappointed by the discussion of teen drinking [by Freshmen]. I’ve had parents call me and say ‘I’ve caught my teen drinking.’” Besides drunk driving, she brought up another matter. “The big issue is the promiscuity that goes along with drinking. Females lose their guard.” The junior said girls are regularly at parties where alcohol is

present. “[Promiscuity] kind of comes with drinking, but you can’t help it once you’re drunk. You can’t think as clearly.” He said he has hooked up with a girl, who was drunk too. He defined ‘hooking up’ as “Making out and stuff...not sex or anything like that. It was mutual and we decided it was a onetime thing.” Harper said there is no stereotype of the typical teen drinker. “It would probably be someone who has low self-esteem.” “Sometimes you don’t even know it,” Harper said. “It’s the people who are smart, get good grades, drink every so often on the weekend and then WHAM… they’ve crashed a car.” He added, “It’s really sad. It goes across the gamete to think it’s normal to put poison in your body and hurt yourself.” After passing out that afternoon, the junior stopped drinking for awhile. “I didn’t want to get in trouble again.” However, lately he’s “been going out and drinking again. I’m not really afraid I’ll be caught. I make sure there’s no parentals where I drink. And I don’t come home drunk. I won’t be that stupid again.”

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5

things you didn’t know about...

Language arts teacher

Nathan Willard

1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

He worked for the St. Louis County Animal Control as a dog catcher while in college. He reduced the agings of MCI’s small business accounts by $1.5 million in one month.

As an avid role-playing gamer, he once played a Dungeons and Dragons campaign for 15 years. He has autographs from 10 major actors from Lord of the Rings. Hopefully, he’ll be graduating from St. Louis University with a Masters in American Studies this May. “God willing,” he said. compiled by Brett Hamlin

The Chill:

Customers, supplies frozen in place Brad Schlemmer • Reporter The video game family has fully aged into its ninth generation. With the Playstation 3 (PS3) and the Nintendo Wii systems, kids and adults alike flocked to watch the long-awaited release of the new offspring. A few avid videogamers were disappointed at their release. Junior Tim Manness said supplies were held because Best Buy promised to have more for the following weekend. At Best Buy in the Chesterfield Valley, crushed Red Bull cans, propane heating systems and tents speckled the sidewalks while the people in the line-up spilled into the streets waiting until midnight for the release. What kept these people out in the cold? Senior TJ Schaefer said the wireless Internet access; junior Jeremy Studt said the graphics. “What’s not to like?” sophomore Rob Willis added.

The Power of Where Brad Schlemmer • Reporter Beeping and flashing cell phones, bursting at the buttons with media accessibility, are now equipped to find nearly anyone and anyplace. Sprint and Verizon Wireless offer this pragmatic proxy to consumers. Verizon Wireless features the Chaperone service and Sprint the MapQuest FindMe application. Though these programs are different, they offer the ability to track another cell phone user. Ms. Cheryl Armbrecht, a Verizon representative, said that Verizon subscribers can track anyone within a family plan, which provides secure access to another user’s location. “[Chaperone] is very individual. The choice relies on the family and the members’ lifestyle,” Armbrecht said. Along with the family plan, parents can use the additional ChildZone service to find their child and also create zones where the parents will be alerted if the child leaves the zone. ChildZone only works with the Migo phone for kids. Armbrecht added that the Migo has a few stored numbers so the child can call and be contacted by parents, and it cannot send text messages or dial.

features • page 13

photo • Brad Schlemmer

•Playstation Sensation. Customers line up and bundle up outside of Best Buy in the Chesterfield Valley. The people that were in the front of the line waited three days outside for the PS3, and to ensure fairness, the Best Buy staff took names in order to distribute.

However, all three agreed that the PS3 games cut down the competition. The PS3 was offered with two memory bank options of 20 gigabytes (GB) or 60 GB. The three LHS students stayed out starting Nov. 15 for the Nov. 17 release of the PS3. Manness said he wanted the Wii because it’s cheaper and the controller and gaming method are different than the other new systems. Manness’ only concern was the name change to the Wii. “Nintendo wanted to make their game system more family based; the name and some games were moderated for the change,” Manness said. Studt said, “The cold and rain were probably the worst things out of this whole experience.”

New programs for cell phones test bounds of parental trust

Sprint offers the MapQuest FindMe, brought to consumers by ULocate Communications. Office Manager Maureen Jarvis said that ULocate previously gave products directly to consumers, but that was discontinued around April 2005. “The idea we had was ULocate would be the creator of the application, and cell phone companies could provide it,” Jarvis said. GPS-enabled cell phones is ground breaking. However, some teens feel it is more of a leash than leisure. This goes without saying for junior Elise Reid and her parents. Reid said that her parents have her repeatedly check in an unnecessary amount of times. “I have done nothing to hurt their confidence in me,” Reid said, “but I feel restricted, even violated.” Reid’s parents use the Chaperone through Verizon Wireless. “[My parents] tell me they don’t trust others, but I keep sensing they don’t trust me,” Reid said. Ms. Kim Reid, Elise’s mother, said Chaperone is more of a check. “[My husband and I] wouldn’t use it on a daily basis,” Reid said. “Technology is always changing, sometimes for good and bad, but there are some strange people out there,”

Kim said. “When my generation was young, we never had this kind of capability of security.” There are other teens on the opposite end of the spectrum. Sophomore Arianna Lynch and her parents have a more relaxed relationship. “I do what they ask and I can pretty much do what I want,” Lynch said. Ms. Lynch agrees; Arianna has to earn her trust. “As long as Arianna is responsible I feel that she can be with her friends unmonitored and unsupervised,” Lynch said. Jarvis said that teens generally don’t mind. The benefits of GPS in cell phones outweigh any discomfort. For example, Jarvis recalled a man who had lost his cellphone; it was stolen, but it was recovered quickly using GPS. In a graver situation, Jarvis said a family located a member who suffered from Alzheimer’s Disease and had a memory lapse and started to wander off. Even Ms. Lynch said she was considering getting the application. “[Arianna] is only 16—it might be worthwhile,” she said. Now, the press of a button can confirm that security is safe in family’s hands.

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page 14 • sports

dec. 15, 2006

Where are they now? Park plays, studies at McKendree Josh Handler • Sports Editor

Ryan Bueckendorf • Sports Editor

• Image File Photo

•Big Shot. Getting over her defenders, Kelsey Park (32) shoots during her senior year. Park played basketball and softball at LHS and continues to play basketball at McKendree College.

During her time at Lafayette, Kelsey Park, Class of 2005, was a starter for the softball and basketball teams, averaging 11.4 points per game in basketball as a senior. As a senior she was selected as a First Team All Conference basketball player. Park is now playing basketball at McKendree College in Lebanon, IL. The Bearcats are ranked second in the American Midwest Conference (AMC). Last year, Park was named AMC Freshman of the Year as well as being named to the Academic All-Conference team. She averaged 4.0 points per game as a freshman. Park had a strong career as a Lady Lancer leading them to a District Championship her senior year against Eureka. Last year the Bearcats, went to the

NAIA Division I National Championship. However, they were unable to win a game in the tournament. “I want to go to Nationals and at least win one game, because our school has never done that,” Park said. She says that she still keeps in touch with her good friends from LHS and they occasionally meet up. Park is majoring in business administration and working towards a minor in chemistry. She hopes to graduate and go on to Logan Chiropractic School. Her younger sisters, sophomore Paige Park and freshman Anne Park are following in Kelsey’s steps by playing softball and basketball. McKendree started their season 7-4, with Park averaging 4.2 points per game.

Runners finish where teams left off at State Alex Davis • Reporter

Buttram, Engleman, Lutz represent boys at State; Lutz, five returnees in top five to headline 2007 Cross Country had a good showing at the Missouri State High School Activities Association (MHSHAA) Championships on Nov. 4 in Jefferson City. For boy’s cross country, the team sent seniors John Buttram, Zach Engleman and junior Eric Lutz. Lutz came in 31st, Buttram came in 68th, and Engleman came in 101st in a meet that featured the best runners statewide. In a season where Buttram and Lutz had been the Lancers’ one-two punch wire-to-wire, their high finish was no surprise to Coach Randy Seagrist.

Seagrist was also impressed with Engleman’s performance. With Lutz returning for his senior year in 2007, he has set the goal of All-State, which would mean finishing in the top 25 individual runners. The presumable 2007 top five will all head into next season with at least one 2006 varsity race next season. Lutz, fellow junior Drew Stiehl, and sophomores Shawn Brands, Steven Stallis, and Scott Van Nest all return next season, along with several promising junior varsity runners who should play a role on varsity.

Go Lancers!

Girls send Worley, Cover to solid State finish; Both to return in 2007 to lead veteran varsity Girls cross country’s State performers included freshman Elizabeth Worley and Katy Cover, with Worley coming in at 76th and Cover finishing 91st. The State Meet capped an impressive freshman campaign for Worley, who was the Lady Lancer’s top runner this season. Cover, a three-year cross country runner, enjoyed the most solid season of her high school career in 2006, consistently placing in meets and coming in consistently as the Lady Lancers’ number two runner. Looking ahead to 2007, Cover and

Worley figure to team up with a strong core of returning juniors and underclassmen in a season where the Lady Lancers hope to qualify for State as a team. A 2006 season that saw the girls compete as a team with almost no seniors competing in varsity meets will benefit from the experience of maturity their runners gained for next season and years to come. For both teams, the State Meet meant the end of a 2006 season that was successful for both individuals and the teams as a whole.


sports • page 15

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Missing Identity:

Playing a loaded schedule, talent heavy basketball searches for consistency Ryan Bueckendorf • Sports Editor When looking at Lafayette’s basketball team, both in person and on paper, it’s hard to look past sophomore Tyler Griffey. Glancing at his stat sheet, this nationally ranked prospect’s gaudy numbers immediately jump out, as do the recruitment offers he’s received from top colleges nationwide. Watching him play, his 6’8” figure towering above the other nine players on the court, is like watching a seasoned veteran. He can drain jump shots with the same sure-handedness he uses to slams home dunks, and grows more in tune with the game each time he steps on the court. Programs with an athlete of this caliber often treat them as though they were the only player on the court; their other four starters are but avenues to get their star the ball. For the Lancers, though, it’s never been about one player. Adhering to a strictly team-first formula, Coach Dave Porter has infused talent at every position. “I think all four seniors [need to help carry the load] as well as Tyler,” senior point guard Kevin Peifer said. Despite the loss of several key players to graduation, the Lancers have a lineup that is once again favored to compete for the Conference Championship. That is, to a man, their goal. “We want to win Conference, Districts, and advance farther into the State playoffs then last season,” Griffey said. The team this goal as motivation, knowing that a good record would follow.

The Lancers are led in scoring by Griffey (20.0 ppg), followed by seniors TJ Shaffer (10.8 ppg), Kevin Fessler (9.8 ppg) and Kyle Meyer (6.3 ppg), as of press time. They have received scoring contributions of some kind from 10 players, and 11 have at least one rebound. Peifer’s contributions have gone beyond stats, as his skillful play-to-play handling of the team, as well as his speed up and down the court have been excellent. The team opened the season with a victory over Eureka, 65-51. Junior Tony Meier scored 13 points in the contest, propelling LHS to their important victory over their Highway 109 rival. They then hit the road, heading to the Hoopfest in Kentucky. There they faced the Riverdale Warriors, a perennial state champion contender in basketball-rich Tennessee, losing 71-51. The team took their newfound experience to the KMOX Shootout at Scottrade Center last Thursday. They faced Vianney’s Golden Griffins, their same opposition as in 2003 when they went on to the Final Four in State, but lost 51-47. Against Parkway South, they broke out for 83 points in a dominating victory that saw both Shaffer and Griffey top 20 points. At 2-2, it is the stark contrast between the team that easily dismantled Parkway South and the team that failed to contain Vianney that distorts the team’s true identity. Will they, in big games, play as a team with two players topping 20 points or a team that commits careless fouls and doesn’t take advantage of scoring chances?

Defensively Downbeat Ryan Bueckendorf • Sports Editor Defense wins big games for good teams. The Lancers proved that a lack thereof can also lose them, against the Vianney Golden Griffins in the KMOX Shootout on Dec. 7. The Lancers matched up well against the Griffins in a game that was a rematch of a 60-47 Lancer victory in 2003. LHS had the height, they had the history and they had the momentum over a team supposedly reeling after losing two straight games. They had all the pieces in place for a solid win. Matchups mean much more on the court than when on paper, however, as the Lancers played an uncharacteristically soft game defensively in a 51-47 loss. “Vianney executed far and away better than we did,” Coach Dave Porter said. “We did not defend in the way LHS is accustomed to defending.” Featured as prominently in their opponents’ game plans as they were in the Shootout programs, sophomore Tyler

Griffey (20 pts. 7 reb.) and Vianney senior and Nebraska signee Dave Stewart (25 pts. 6 reb.) did not disappoint. They set the tone early, as each scored six of their teams’ first eight points. Griffey’s second of three 20-plus point games so far this season was offset by the absence of any other Lancer in double digit scoring. They could never mount a consistent scoring threat, and at one point went four possessions with only one shot. “Basketball is a game of flow,” Porter said, “and we could never get into a good flow.” The team’s poor execution did not stem from a lack of preparation. The Lancers never could find an effective defense for Stewart, and it cost them, but Porter insisted the Griffins pulled no surprises on his team. “They ran the exact stuff we prepared for, and they ran it well,” he said. The Lancers, who with the 6’8” Griffey, and a pair of 6’6” players in senior TJ Shaffer and sophomore Will Kirksey, had a significant height advantage over the

photo • Mike Kurlowski

•Tipping Off. Going up for the jump ball, sophomore Tyler Griffey tries to get the Lancers first possession of the season against Eureka. The Lancers won their first game by a score of 65-51.

“We just have to focus,” Griffey said. “Nobody can take a possession off.” The Lancers take on Conference rival Marquette at home tonight at 7 p.m., followed by Hot Hoops.

Lancers plagued by foul trouble, defensive miscues in Shootout loss

Griffins. They weren’t able to capitalize, however, as Vianney countered by feeding the ball to their three sport star Stewart. Another factor that played into a Lancer loss is their continuous foul trouble. While they shot a credible 85 percent from the foul line, they only took 13 free throws. While Lancer shooters couldn’t reach the line, the Griffins couldn’t be kept off of it Sloppy play and careless fouls led to 24 foul shots by the Griffins, with 16 of them dropping for points. Kirksey (five fouls) and Griffey (four fouls) alone accounted for as many fouls as the entire Vianney team, as an inconsistent perimeter game had the Lancers looking to make up ground in the paint, and the Griffins made them pay. “We played pretty soft,” senior Kyle Meyer said. The inability to close down lanes created many scoring opportunities for Vianney and fouls for Lafayette, and the Griffins rarely failed to capitalize, especially in the fourth quarter.

The Lancers kept the game very close. Neither team held a lead greater than three points until the Griffins pulled away in the closing minutes of the game. Porter cited his team’s defensive inexperience as another contributing factor in the loss. “We aren’t experienced enough that our basketball IQ allows us to adapt and change to what we want to do,” he said. The team maintained, despite the publicity that would come from losing a Shootout game, it wouldn’t carry any more weight than another loss. “We look at it as just another game,” Griffey said. While the weaknesses revealed necessitate much more practice, ultimately it is only one loss. If the team can keep their opposition as close as the Lancers kept the Griffins, Porter expects more positive results. “When the score is that close in the final minutes,” Porter said, “we’ll win more of those than we’ll lose.”

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page 16 • sports

Soccer goes deep: 2nd in State Nina Walters • Reporter Never has a LHS boys team made it to the State Finals, and there were few who thought this would be the year. Making it to the MSHSAA Final Four, let alone the State Finals, was a big deal for this group of boys. Their Finals run was the first time the team even made it out of the Elite Eight. “This was a milestone for the program. I think we were always just happy constantly being in the Elite Eight and now each year we can improve to be in the Final Four,” Coach Tim Walters said. Heading into Districts, the boys were ranked tenth. Getting into the finals wasn’t easy. In order to get that far they had to beat Kirkwood, ranked seventh and two-time defending State Champions CBC, ranked third, in Districts. In the Kirkwood game, sophomore Kyle Biernacki came up big with both goals to help the team advance to the District Finals. “It felt good and I was privileged I could make such a difference as a sophomore,” Biernacki said. Against CBC, junior Stephen McMahon followed Biernacki’s cue, scoring two goals to help proceed to Sectionals. Following Districts they played Oakville, then Hazelwood Central in the Elite Eight. Finally the last team that stood in the way of playing in the finals was Vianney, ranked 6th. Junior Harrison Grubbs scored in the first half followed by a goal in the second half by junior Sean Butler. Junior goaltender Mike Hamilton only allowed one goal in the fifteen games leading up to the Finals. “To come up big as a goalie in route to State and in State was the most fun experience of my life, ever. That’s the only way to explain it,” Hamilton said. After beating CBC in the District Finals, all of the players agreed it was huge and an “amazing feeling.” “It proved private schools aren’t as good as they think they are,” Hamilton said. “As an individual, I am just thankful that I was able to play in the Final Four and I played my hardest because the seniors really deserved it. We owed it to them,” Biernacki said. Even though Chaminade won State, the boys set a record for themselves and set a challenge for teams in the years to come. “Next year we will be losing defense, but our confidence will be stronger,” Butler said. “Making it to the finals and being so successful gives us confidence and lets the next years’ teams realize they can compete at that level,” Walters said. With the standards now set for next year, Hamilton believes they will be going to State again and this time will win. Their season ended with a second place finish at State, a record of 21-4-3, and being the last public school team remaining in the State. “It’s a great feeling making it to the Finals that I have felt before with Lafayette soccer, but never on the boy’s side and with it being their first time, it’s even more satisfying then before,” Walters said. Throughout the whole season they managed to score a total of 74 goals and only allowed 21 having the best Suburban West team leaders offensively and defensively. Butler lead the Conference with 24 goals and 16 assists. McMahon had 11 assists, good for fourth in Conference. Hamilton played in 14 shutouts, 10 of them solo. He had a save percentage of 0.919 and made 124 saves during the season. Butler made both First Team All-State and First Team All-Metro, and senior Brad Schweizer made Second Team All-State and Second Team All-Metro. Hamilton was announced Honorable Mention for All-State and All-Metro, and Walters received the Coach of the Year award.

dec. 15, 2006

• photo courtesy of Ralph Kuehnel Photography

•Rolling In. Running with Chaminade All-American forward and Post-Dispatch Player of the Year Mike Roach, senior Ryan Garrone fights for the ball in the State Finals. The Lancers were able to make it all the way to the State Final game for the first time in school history behind the stellar goalkeeping of junior Mike Hamilton and the quick footwork of All-Metro and All-State selection junior Sean Butler, as well as a balanced offense and stifling defense.

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sports • page 17

the image

Shorter, quicker basketball knocks off Mehville Josh Handler • Sports Editor Minus last years starting line up, the varsity girls basketball team is off to a good start. The only senior starter for the first game was Chelsey Carmody. Another senior, Amanda Ehrhardt started the season injured and missed close to the first month. Also gone from the team with the Class of 2006 is much height. “Since we don’t have that much height, we have less of an advantage,” Junior Sami Dunger said. Coach Denise Meyer feels that in the past the team was lucky to have a lot of height and that will still be okay. “This is a misconception due to (our) having three six-footers in years prior, ” Meyer said. Last season, the team finished 16-11. Dunger expects the team will do better this season. “We work better as a team and the chemistry is just there,” she said. Meyer agreed the team has advantages over last year’s squad, “We are better in transition this year,” she said. Dunger is a key part of this year’s team, as she led the team with 61 points in their first five games.

The Lady Lancers opened the season by losing to eighth ranked Webster Groves on Nov. 28. The unranked Lady Lancers were, however, able to hang with the Statesmen falling by just two points by a score of 58-56. In their second game, the team beat Holt 46-33 before defeating Howell North 60-46. In the team’s fourth game, they found themselves matched up against one of the top teams in the area, Mehlville. The Lancers, however, were able to knock off the Panthers 52-49. Replacing last year’s class as starters are Carmody, Dunger, junior Meg O’Connell, sophomores Lauren Hall and Jessica Steinmetz. Senior Cindel Harris has been key off the bench, scoring 27 in those five games. The Lady Lancers struggled against Lindbergh falling by a score of 55-40 while shooting just over 30 percent. Tonight they take on the Mustangs home at 5:30 p.m. in a Hot Hoops showdown.

photo • Josh Handler

•Going Up. Putting up a shot, junior Meg O’Connell shoots. O’Connell had 34 points as a starter through five games.

Weighty issues: Wrestlers face limits throughout season Alex Davis • Reporter Dropping a weight class. Going into the season, some wrestlers, as always, are burdened with that task. Both junior Matt Brewer and senior Quinton Bell, have had to switch classes. “I ate seven meals a day with protein and lifted at least three times a week,” Brewer said. Fortunately for the wrestlers who had to change a weight class, a new weight program has been started, and it will look at the body weight and drastically reduce major weight cutting. Other wrestlers who changed from their prior class were seniors Mike Margherita, 119 pounds and senior Ashley Hudson, 112 pounds. “If a wrestler weighs 126 pounds, and

after the formula calculations, the lowest weight that individual can wrestle is 118.5 pounds,” Coach Jake Lapinski said. For Bell, dropping into his weight class, wasn’t as difficult as it may have been for others. “At the end of the year last year, Quinton [Bell] could have qualified at 189 weight class,” Lapinski said. “Every wrestler, every year needs to change one, maybe two weight classes.” Weight changes aren’t the only issues that have arisen throughout the off season. Due to staph infections, members of the wrestling organization have been especially “proactive on the situation” Lapinski said. “We have already been on top of skin

diseases in general, but this year, we will be more strict on enforcing the mandatory rules. Rules like showering after practices, no street shoes in the wrestling room, wiping off shoes before going into the wrestling room,” Lapinski said. “We require all wrestlers to have at least four sets of practice clothes so you have no excuse for wrestling with a dirty pair. Wrestling shoes are to be used only on the mats,” Lapinski said. Lapinski seems to have a positive outlook on the season in front of him. “I see us being very competitive throughout the year. We have a lot of youth on the team, and at the beginning I expect to see a few bumps, but by the end of the year you will see drastic progres-

sion,” Lapinski said. As expected, the team has hit its share of “bumps” so far. The opening dual-meet against Lindbergh resulted in a 39-41 victory for the Flyers as the meet came down to the last match. The team also suffered a 24-51 loss against the fourth in State Northwest Lions. Despite the two losses, the Parkway South tournament didn’t end with looks of disappointment. The team played Mehlville on Dec. 13, but results were unavailable at press time. “We had a really good showing at the Parkway South tournament, with a big upset against Jackson,” Margherita said.

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page 18 • sports

dec. 16, 2006

Swimmers notch 24th straight District Title Alex Davis • Reporter Swimming rounded out its 2006 season with a fifth place finish at State. “[The season] ended up exactly how I thought it would,” Head swimming coach Todd Gabel said. “I thought that we would lose one meet, which we did, and place maybe fifth or sixth in State, and we did.” In addition placing at State, the team capped its season with another outstanding statistic; one that Gabel was “most proud of this year.” “We won our conference this year, and it is now 24 consecutive Conference wins,” Gabel said. “That’s probably my most favorite memory of the season.” Unfortunately for this swim program, the team next year will enjoy many of the seniors who were very important to the fifth place finish. Next year, Gabel will try to “rebuild

the team” and “qualify people that should be qualified.” Hopefully, the team can fill the open spots with the returning under classmen who got experience this year. Next year’s team will look for a dominant leader, especially with eight seniors graduating. The team will stomach a drastic points loss in the graduations of Sean Mathews, Max Beushausen and Jason Wiese. Mathews, who alone had an allotted 40 points, is not completely done with his swimming career, however. He will be attending the Northwestern University next Fall, where he was offered and accepted a scholarship for swimming. With a look back at the season’s success, “[with a] couple more qualifiers for State, we place higher,” Gabel said.

• photo courtesy of Prestige Portraits

•Finishing Up. Following a meet, the boys swim team speaks with Coach Todd Gabel. The team finished fifth in State, as senior Sean Mathews scored 40 points in the State meet.

Swimming makes splash in first season of new schedule Ryan Bueckendorf • Sports Editor The difficulties that accompany following up a successful season in high school sports can sometimes be overwhelming; factors such as graduation and the pressure to repeat can create steep odds against teams attempting to build perennial champions. Despite all this, there is no high school coach who wouldn’t wish these difficulties on their team each and every year in exchange for the success follows. For girls swimming and Coach Jean Chard, his teams have beaten the odds with the annual regularity of clockwork. Fresh off their 21st consecutive Conference Championship and a run that saw them go as far as second place at State, Chard and his swimmers are very optimistic about beginning their Conference title defense. The key component this year’s edition of the Lady Lancer legacy, Chard said, is team chemistry. They have strong competitor up and down their roster, and all of the crucial

positions are filled by able-bodied athletes. Last season, the Lancers had to compete with a lineup devoid of seniors. To wit: it was the first time in Chard’s tenure that he didn’t have a senior score a point at the State meet. This season, last year’s juniors and sophomores have shed the yoke of inexperience and have returned seniors and juniors with the experience of swimming on a championship varsity team. They provide Chard a talented core with which to build around with incoming underclassmen, and this depth should work to the Lancer’s advantage. “With the dynamics of the Senior Class we have returning,” Chard said, “and the incoming freshmen group that we have this year, we’re deeper than we were last year.” Around the Conference, the Lancers are using this depth to dominate the honor rolls. Senior Marisa Rodriguez holds the top mark in the 50m and 100m freestyle.

Fellow senior Emily Buss holds the 100m breaststroke. Kari Peglar holds the mark for the 200m freestyle, holding a slim margin over fellow Lady Lancer Ashleigh Grammar. Peglar also holds the 500 freestyle mark by a wide margin over her nearest competitor. The Lancers hold both the 200 medley and freestyle relays and the 400 freestyle relay by huge margins. They hold leads of close to six, eleven, and 12 seconds in each, respectively. In the area-wide honor rolls, perhaps a better indicator of the competition the team will face in Districts, they are nearly as dominant. The Lancers hold the top time in both relays, as well as leads in more individual events than any one other school. Overall, a Lancers have three swimmers in the top four in every individual event except diving. They hold the best times in every single event but diving, and diver Shannon Toomey is second to the

diver from Lindbergh. Around the Conference and State, graduations have depleted the lineups of some of the Lancers’ toughest competition, with Chard citing defending State Champion Blue Springs as an example. “I think we’re a better team because of graduation going on around the state, to make us on even grounds again with other teams,” Chard said. One thing exists as a potential boost for teams statewide. While most people take the angle that the change in season allows girls to focus on school swimming as opposed to club swimming, Chard takes a different view. “If we’re as successful as we’re going to be this season I think the girls will get more coverage, more attention that way,” he said. With a talented lineup, an experienced coach and a refreshing change in season, it’s about time for the rest of LHS to get in tune with one of the most successful programs in school history, and the attention the girls have coming is 21 years overdue.

Brett Hamlin • Reporter When varsity football Head Coach Boyd Manne met with the team before their Nov. 3 game against rival Marquette, (3-7) he put football as simply as he could. He said everything that needed to be done started with one inch. Needless to say, the boys listened. Lafayette came out with a passion absent in the previous games of the dismal 2-8 season and rolled over the Mustangs all four quarters, good for a 31-6 win. It was a victory that was enough to just save the Lancers from the notoriety that would accompany owning the worst record in school history. The Lancers dominated Marquette from start to finish, composing 450 yards

of offense, and five touchdowns. “I was proud of the way the team executed,” Manne said. “They played with emotion and heart; it was a great note for our seniors to end on.” The Lancer defense had a field day, holding University of Iowa-bound halfback Albert Thomas to a season-low of five yards. Lafayette forced five turnovers from three fumble recoveries between defensive end Matt Lewis and linebacker Matt Guckes and two interceptions by Anthony Fullilove, one of which he took back 45 yards for a touchdown. Junior halfback Matt Brewer came short of the record 253 yard game set by Mr. Chuvelle Johnson, Class of 2005. The record was in full grasp before suffering

a minor injury in the second quarter and being pulled with eight minutes to go. Brewer did however finish the night with 202 yards, three touchdowns and six tackles as middle linebacker. Fullilove rushed three times for 74 yards. His speed into the secondary resulted in several long runs. Junior wideout/linebacker Garrett Millman caught a five yard touchdown pass and had 6 tackles, finishing first in the Suburban West with 83 solo tackles and 17 assists. Senior J.J. Conti caught the only other pass and broke a 45 yard gain, setting up a first and goal for the Lancers. This game ended the Lancers 2006 outing, ending the final record at 2-8, with the other win against Northwest (2-8).

Brewer was named First Team AllConference at both halfback and linebacker. Also named All-Conference were senior tackle Trent Marsh, senior defensive tackle Jimmy Begemann, and Welchans. Although playing halfback for the Lancers, Brewer is listed as the fifth ranked fullback prospect according to www.stcgridreports.com. He finished the season with 1045 total yards, and 71 tackles as middle linebacker. The Lancers look to 2007 with the return of 15 starters, including injured quarterback Brian Muench who missed this season due to a spinal fracture. Senior defensive end Matt Messer has been scouted by Ivy League schools Harvard and Cornell, but has yet to decide.

Football ends on high note; scores big win in Marquette rivalry

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sports • page 19

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Rugby club gives student athletes “complete” game Ryan Bueckendorf • Sports Editor Let this serve as a memo to all of Lafayette’s football, soccer, swimming and cross-country athletes: there is life after fall sports. With the exception of a select few who have made the basketball team, many of Lafayette’s most talented jocks will be rebels without a cause this winter. They will be forced to hit the gym, play pick-up games in the bitter cold, or suffer the consequences of heading into a spring sport out of shape. Have no fear, because while fall sports are over and spring sports lay three cold months beyond the horizon, the solution to this problem lays just a short drive down Highway 109. That solution, the Eureka Rugby Football Club, has been the best-kept athletic secret in the district since it was founded by Coach Matt Strickland in 2002 at the request of some of his soccer and football players.. “I had several athletes at Eureka who wanted to find out about rugby and

play,” Strickland said. “At their urging, I founded the club with [Assistant Coach] Roger Tucker and we’ve been playing ever since.” The club’s name can be confusing for Lafayette students, as it is not through Eureka that the team is chartered. It is actually run through Rockwood, completely independent from Eureka. It is a club, not a school sport, so it is wide open for Lancers who are interested and all types of athletes are encouraged to come out. Rugby, in essence, is a sport that combines the skill elements of many sports into one fast-paced, intense package. “Rugby is a complete game,” Strickland said. “You must have fitness, athletic ability, and intelligence to play the sport well. I’ve played many sports and it is easily the most fun to play.” The game itself is continuous; the clock almost never stops, with play divided into two halves. It offers positions for all types of athletes, split primarily into two groups. The back positions necessitate speed and

endurance, while the forward positions demand size and strength. Strickland has been involved in rugby since his college days, when he and some friends were looking to get re-involved in athletics and happened upon rugby. They were immediately hooked, and Strickland went on to play four years of collegiate ball and serve as an assistant coach at Northeast Missouri State (now Truman State University). While the game is perceived by many worried coaches and parents as reckless and dangerous, Strickland is quick to point out that the injury rates in rugby are lower than those of football and much lower than those of hockey. This misconception, he said, is a result of the lack of media coverage that rugby receives in the US as opposed to internationally., where it is immensely popular. “I think rugby suffers the same problem as soccer,” Strickland said. “It wasn’t developed in America, so we don’t feel we have as rich a history in the sport.”

This lack of coverage has also lead to a misunderstanding of the complexity of the sport. As with any sport, rugby may come off as complicated and difficult to a naked-eye observer when in fact, the basic rules of the sport take only about 15 minutes to absorb. From there, anyone who puts in enough practice can acquire the intricacies necessary to be successful. For players interested in learning more, Strickland has an informational packet that describes the rules and regulations of rugby, available at practice. The team holds practices on Tuesdays and Thursdays, with an optional skills practice on Wednesday. The first practice of the year will be on Jan. 9. Practices are held at Eureka Elementary, which is across Highway 44 from Eureka High School. If you’re a fall or spring athlete and your offseason training regimen needs a jump-start, or if you are just looking for a good time and workout all in one, come out to play one of the world’s most popular sports right here in Rockwood.

The biggest disaster in St. Louis isn’t a blizzard; it’s the Blues On Nov. 11, I was able to see something that you can’t see in St. Louis anymore. That would be good hockey. I was on a trip to Nashville, and thought it would be fun to go to a Nashville Predators/Colorado Avalanche game. This experience ended up being pretty depressing. As I sat there watching a goal by left winger Scottie Upshall and goalie Chris Mason’s 42 stopped shots lead the Predators to a 1-0 victory, I couldn’t believe it. I left astounded at the high quality of the hockey that I had just watched compared to that of the Blues. Then I thought back to the days of Pavol Demitra, Wayne Gretzky, Brett Hull, Al MacInnis and Chris Pronger in St. Louis. The Blues made the playoffs for more than 20 straight years. It got to the point that as a kid I used to think that every NHL team made the playoffs. Unfortunately, about two years ago, my world as a hockey fan came crashing

down. First it was the lockout, one whole year when the NHL stood still. As if that was not bad enough, former Blues Owner Bill Laurie decided to stop caring. He decided to sell the team, but the team he sold wasn’t in what we would call mint condition. When the lockout finally ended and all of the hockey fans in St. Louis were starting to get excited for the season and to see the streak continue, the first blow came: MacInnis was retiring. This snowballed into the trading of Pronger and the Blues letting Demitra walk. Before last year’s trade deadline Eric Boguniecki, Mike Sillinger, Doug Weight and Eric Weinrich were all shown the door as well. For the first time in team history, Blues fans were actually singing the blues. Finally, the lockout ended and after a number of trades for low salary trash, the team was sold to a group of owners that

appear to have good intentions. Unfortunately, they signed a number of washed up players, creating a who’s who of stars from the mid- to late- nineties. On top of this team still playing horribly, they raised ticket prices. That makes sense, right? I could urge you to stop going to the games, but seeing that there are consistently less than ten thousand fans, I don’t think that I need to do that. You aren’t going anyway. I actually thought about going to the game on Dec. 5 for Hull’s number retirement, but then I remembered that Hull wasn’t playing. I can’t imagine having been a Blues player that night. 24 players that contributed to the legacy of one of the best franchises in NHL history were standing right in front of them and they had to look at those men realizing that they had contributed to this once proud team’s collapse. I don’t have any Blues shirts anymore.

My faith in them is dwindling. In the past, There was always hope that next year, after all those years making the playoffs, Josh Handler we would fiSports Editor nally win it all. Now that hope is gone. As Blues fans we want to love our team, but no one likes being miserable Thanks a lot Mr. Laurie. Maybe one day there will finally be a Stanley Cup in St. Louis, but until then I will go back to watching the only real St. Louis team (I will address the mess that we call the Rams at a later date), the Cardinals, get ready for a repeat.

Off the bench

Play Rugby this Winter! No experience is necessary.

High School Rugby is now available to Lafayette and Rockwood Summit High School Men. Be a playing member of the Eureka Rugby Club, one of six St. Louis area high school Rugby Teams. Practices start for the Eureka Rugby Club on Tuesday, Jan. 10 at Eureka Elementary School. The address is 442 West Fourth Street Eureka, MO 63025-1804

2412 Taylor Road (636) 273-3600 Free Student Checking Account 16 and older can have an account without a parent

Free ATM/Debit Card Free online Banking One time refund of overdraft fee

For more information contact Coach Matt Strickland Phone: 314-607-1141 Email: stricklandmatthew@rockwood.k12.mo.us For more information about High School Rugby in St. Louis go to www.morugby.org For more information about High School Rugby in the Unites States go to www.usarugby.org

Friday Night Games at Sportport


page 20 • entertainment

in•out•about

Start new year off with medieval bang

The Pageant

Dec. 15 at 7 p.m. 105.7 The Point’s Ho Ho Show Deftones, Bullet For My Valentine, Sparta $27.50

Nicole Castellano • Entertainment Editor Have you ever imagined “catapulting” a regret from the past year, or adding a “magical wish” to a dragon named Wanda who will bring your wish to 2007? That dream could come true this New Year’s Eve. Some people will be sitting at home watching Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve, while others will be out participating in risky behavior. Why not try something new, like St. Louis’ First Night? The Grand Center is proud to host the 14th annual First Night, with this year’s theme “Red, Hot Camelot.” Admission buttons are eight dollars for adults, and four dollars for kids. Since First Night is familyfriendly, it is an alcohol free

event.  “First Night is a visual and performing arts festival for the community that occurs on New Year’s Eve,” Executive Director Kelly Weber said. Their mission is to expand the community’s appreciation of the arts through a diverse program that offers different cultural experiences. Most events are indoors but walking from venue to venue can be frigid, so be sure to dress warm and bundle up with hats and scarves. Still feeling cold? Then stop by one of the many food tables to warm up with some hot chocolate, coffee or other tasty • photo used with permission from Brad Lucas treats.

Dec. 17 at 6:30 p.m. 105.7 The Point’s Ho Ho Show 2 Jet, Angels and Airwaves, Red Jumpsuit Apparatus $35 •Looking Up At last year’s “Emerald Nights,” characters such as this scarecrow greeted the guests. This year, guests will be greeted by knights and maidens.

Scheduled First Night Activities: 5:30 p.m.

Royal Parade and Opening Ceremony •J.P. Somersaulter: an award-winning video/filmmaker shows his skills and humor to unlock the secrets of animation and filmmaking. •Zany Umbrella Circus: a European style circus troupe •Harry Potter: grab a blanket and watch your favorite wizard on a 40 ft wide screen, showing again at 9:30 p.m. •COCA Theater Company: teen acting company will be singing Broadway Cabaret tunes from Company, Wicked, A Chorus Line and others.

7 p.m.

CD Releases

8 p.m.

9 p.m.

Movies Coming Soon

•Fiddleback: original acoustic music with mix of folk, rock, jazz, blues & blue grass

midnight

•Fireworks: choreographed to music to make sure there is dancing in the streets

In Tune with Nicole Spreading the holiday cheer one movie at a time Nicole Castellano • Entertainment Editor

My Top Five Holiday Classics

My Top Five Holiday Newcomers

1. A Christmas Story

1. Elf

2. Charlie Brown Christmas

2. The Santa Clause

5. Home Alone

Jan. 2-7 Mamma Mia!

Jan. 23 The Shins Wincing the Night Away

•St. Louis Shakespeare Company: The Emperor’s New Clothes •Amy Camie: Two of Hearts, music for the soul; a musical journey with a lyrical harpist •Check Mate: life size chess game with real actors

4. A Christmas Carol

Dec. 15-18 A Christmas Carol

7:30 p.m.

•Ed Reggi & Paper Slip Improv: Ed and his performers make you laugh with crazy audience participation •Jeff the Juggler: other times: 6:30; 8:30; 9:30 and 10:30 p.m.

3. It’s a Wonderful Life

The Fabulous Fox Theater

Dec. 19 Bow Wow The Price of Fame

•Muny Kids: singing and dancing to a mix of holiday favorites

•A Burst of Color Last years attendees ooh’d and ah’d over the wonderful fireworks display. This year expect to see a display that is sure to leave you speechless.

Dec. 21 at 8 p.m. All American Rejects w/ Boys Like Girls $25

Dec. 27-31 Cats

6:30 p.m.

• photo used with permission from Brad Lucas

Upcoming Events

3. How the Grinch Stole Christmas 4. The Polar Express 5. Eight Crazy Nights

Dec. 15 Dream Girls The Pursuit of Happyness The Good German Dec. 22 Rocky Balboa Night at the Museum Dec. 29 Pan’s Labyrinth

New to DVD

Dec. 19 Little Miss Sunshine Step Up A Scanner Darkly Dec. 26 The Black Dahlia The Last Kiss Jan. 2 Snakes on a Plane


Dec. 15, 2006