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The Blue and Gold

Malden High School

Volume 107 Edition 1

77 Salem Street

October 2021

Climate Strike Returns to Boston with Urgency Brandon Wong Managing Editor of Art & Photography


there would be monthly planning meetings as she wants to ensure that “[they] capture every single opinion from each school” since you cannot “have one voice that represents all students.” As a result, the administration has been taking into consideration the different “structures, systems, resources, expectations, the political lens and trying to see how [they] can align everything in a way that makes sense.” Noriega-Murphy emphasized how throughout this process, “it has been a lot of learning, but also changing as [they] evolve,” whether that would be collecting information or planning to establish new programs, and ultimately “refining what [they] need to pay attention to.” For Laryssa Doherty, the Assistant Superintendent of Diversity, Equity, and Engagement, she stated how with her new position this year at Malden Public Schools, it has given her the “opportunity to look at what [has] been going on with our diversity work,” and fundamentally “take a deep dive into equity and how equity is permeating through everything that [they] do.” Doherty expressed that it has been “a lot of learning from students, families and staff to figure out what it is that we want to move forward on.” Prior to working in Malden, Doherty was a principal in the Boston Public Schools and

or the past two years, youths around the world have protested for action against Climate Change. Sparked by the climate strikes done by Swedish activist Greta Thunberg in 2018; an international movement has risen to combat the increasing global temperatures and the disasters associated with it. This is known as the School Strike for Climate. On Friday, September 24, 2021, Bostonian Youths held a Climate Strike in Boston Common along with millions of others around the world. “People don’t want to think about the fact that we could’ve worked on the Climate issue decades ago” explained Reggi Alkiewicz, the Civic Engagement Coordinator for the North American Indian Center of Boston. “People don’t want to think about the fact that we’ve been dealing with an ongoing climate crisis.” Calling out to the inactive adults in power, Alkiewicz explains that “we, the youth. The young adults. The ones coming into power do think” about climate change. “I remember running through our old living room right when I came back home and the building began to shake” said TEDtalk speaker and Syrian refugee Dania Hallak as she recounts the Syrian Revolution. “It wasn’t until several years after fleeing Syria that one of the factors that caused the instability in Syria was Climate Change.” The Climate Crisis continues to haunt Hallak as “[she] can’t seem to escape the effects of climate change.” As a Revere resident, Hallak explains that “A few years ago, [she] saw students that go to [her] school evacuating their houses in the winter to avoid floods. This winter, [she] will be one of those students.” Organized by the Fridays for Future MA. and the Massachusetts Youth Climate Coalition, the Mas

Continued on page 15.

Continued on pages 6-7.

Updates On Superintendent and New Administrators

Sandra Li Managing Editor


eginning a new academic year, Malden Public Schools welcomed new district administrators who have all been working to make changes throughout the school district. Dr. Ligia Noriega-Murphy, who is the Superintendent of Malden Public Schools, explained that for the past three months one of the projects that both her and the administration have been working on is revising policies. More specifically, seeing what policies the district has in place already, when was the last time they were revised and who was in the decision making process. On top of that, Noriega-Murphy expressed how analyzing data has been a major focus aspect, especially within Malden High School. She stated that the administration is looking at the dropout rates in hopes of making sure that “we go back to the students who left the school trying to find out what they are doing right now.” Noriega-Murphy added that she recently presented the dropout data to the Malden School Committee revealing how four percent of 10th grade students dropped out of school. Therefore, the administrators are seeing “what programs [they] can start in order to generate support” for students who are either dropping out or repeating grades. She also included that another

area that the administrators have been looking at is a grant where they are in the process of implementing a plan for placing a coordinator for the Career Technical Program. They have been able to gather information from now until January where “[they] are going to be planning about what to do, who to bring on board and looking at the program of studies,” to see if certifications can be given to students and provide support such as an acceleration program for drop out students. For this reason, administrators have been identifying the students and how many credits they need, “in order to make sure that [they] are going to meet one on one, and come up with an action plan for the schools.” Furthermore, Noriega-Murphy described how she recently met with several parents from the Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) to address concerns they had including COVID-19 and discipline in schools, essentially “trying to understand how [they] can support the students” and “how parents can help [them] to work together.” That being said, she believes that “students [need] to have a voice” and also parents, because she acknowledges that “[the administrators] make decisions and sometimes [they] do not know if they are the right decisions.” With regards to student voice, Noriega-Murphy plans to establish student government not only in the high school, but also in the lower grade levels where



The Teen Center Hosts Kickball Game

The Blue and Gold October 2021


BLUE AND AND GOLD GOLD BLUE Lead Reporters Reporters Lead

Nathan Dean ‘24 Gabriel Fesehaie ‘23 Courtney Fitzgerald ‘22 Zachary Nedell ‘24 Desiree Nong ‘23 Daniel O’Toole ‘24 Liam O’Toole ‘22 Hadjar Yousfi ‘24

Hadjar Yousfi Lead Reporter


hanks to the Malden Recreation and Malden Teen Enrichment Center, Malden teens were able to enjoy a community kickball event at MacDonald Stadium on October 8th. Students played multiple games from 12:30 to around 2:00 that afternoon. They were offered a variety of food, including chips, hot dogs and juice. Cathy MacMullin, the MTEC Coordinator, said that since “it was gonna be a beautiful day and the kids got out of school early,” they wanted to host something at the stadium alongside Malden Recreation. She and Joe Levine from Malden Recreation agreed on playing kickball because almost anyone could join in on that. Jay Ortiz, a Youth Activities Leader, added that it was great to be outside since he knows “a lot of the kids really like to do physical activity.” MacMullin also agreed that she was excited “just to be outdoors,” since they are always inside the Teen Center. MacMullin feels that as long as everyone was talking and outside, they would have a great time. Levine also mentioned that it was nice for them “to get fresh air and a little exercise.” He expressed that they all seemed to be having fun, “they’re running around, they’re laughing, they’re chasing each other.” Ortiz said that for whatever reason people came for, “food, to sit down, or to play,” as long as they were enjoying themselves then they’ve done a good job. Because of the half day on October 8th, Ortiz felt it’d be great for the event to be held that day so that they’d have time to have fun before doing whatever they need to get done, such as school or work. Many students came to the event like Meryem Hakkaoui, a junior who has been working with the Teen Center for two years through the Mayor’s Youth Employment Program, so she “[knows] everyone who works here.” She felt it was a nice way to “bring the community together.” Alan Feng, a sophomore, said that “[they] felt great having the event”, and he is thankful that “people gave this opportunity to [them] to play games and hang outside.” Feng and freshman Sabrina Abu Rubieh did advertising for this event, both are happy with the turn out. Feng thought that it was a great way to give people a thing to do, instead of them heading home early. Abu Rubieh felt that she “had fun, and the event [was] great.” She felt

Editor-in-Chief: Julie Huynh ‘22

Editor-in-Chief: Lauren Mallett ‘22

Editor-in-Chief of Print and Design: Carlos Aragon ‘22

Editor-in-Chief of Web and Mobile Apps: Lulu Harding ‘22


Ashton Calixte ‘25 Fatima Dahbani ‘25 Nora Hounain ‘25 Gabi Ilebode ‘22 Mack Keating ‘25 Gianna Lally ‘25 Sophie LeBlanc ‘25 Jessica Li ‘25 Dani Licona-Cruz ‘25 Joy Lugo Morales ‘25 Dorothy Michel ‘25 Lily Nguyen ‘25 Vanessa Portillo Ramos ‘24 Ruka Truong ‘25 Samara Valencia Perez ‘25

Class Advisor: Ryan Gallagher

it was a great way to hang out with her friends. Among the adults who came, one was the Mayor of Malden, Gary Christenson. He had no trouble at all getting on the field with the students and having fun with them. He decided to come to show support for the Teen Enrichment Center and Recreation Department. “They do so much for our youth,” so he always tries his best to show his support. He enjoyed seeing the students outside participating in an easy sport together. He felt it was “great to see [the] students come together to have a great time.” He could tell by the small talk all around that students were enjoying their time and were getting to know each other better through this event. He was especially happy that they got to

Managing Editor: Sandra Li ‘22

Managing Editor: Karen Rivera ‘22

Managing Editor of Art and Photography: Brandon Wong ‘22

Head Copy Editor : Chaimaa Assli ‘23

Head of Local: Kayley Glavin ‘23

Head of Local: Krishany Marius ‘23

Head of Sports: Juliana Luong ‘23

Head of Sports: Kaoutar Wakaf ‘23

“have a stress-free day.” As of right now the Teen Center is now open and located in the Senior Center at 7 Washington St,

Malden, MA 02148. Consider stopping by some time with your friends for a great experience, just like this event.

Freshman Ilyes Ouldsaada kicking the ball at the kickball game. Photo by Brandon Wong.

The Blue and Gold October 2021

Student Voices at MHS on Gender-Neutral Bathrooms



October Word Search

Carlos Aragon Editor-in-Chief of Print Karen Rivera Managing Editor


ver the past few years, the world has progressed when it comes to the inclusivity of people who don’t identify as cisgender (meaning they do not identify with the gender assigned to them at birth). Society has adapted, and so has Malden High school, with the arrival of gender neutral bathrooms at MHS. Most students agree that despite the good intentions, the introduction of gender neutral bathrooms has been rocky. Senior Leana Cambell stated that “[she] thinks they’re cool” but oftentimes sees people using them inappropriately. Additionally, Senior Lucas Williams said that he thinks that the gender neutral bathrooms are important for people “who don’t identify with a specific gender so that they choose what they want.” Even so, he thinks that it isn’t working out because “people don’t take the bathroom seriously.” The Boyle and Jenkins house bathrooms were converted into the “gender neutral” bathrooms. Senior Adriann Monohan Dasilva believes that “it’s not being used right because the majority of the gender neutral bathrooms mostly are occupied by girls.” Dasilva believes that “people don’t feel comfortable going in there because they used to be girl bathrooms and people still see them that way.” When asked about the topic, Senior Olivia Chan stated that “she believes [the school’s] heart was in the right place” when they tried to be inclusive of other genders but the impact overshadowed the intent. The amount of people piling in there made it “really weird, so [many other people do not] really want to go in there.” In addition to the unforeseen issues that have arisen with the introduction of gender neutral bathrooms, some students also feel as though the idea wasn’t thoroughly fleshed out before its introduction. Senior Krista Micalizzi stated that she believes the school has gotten “gender neutral confused with gender non-conforming.” (Gender neutral being for all genders and gender non-conforming being any gender that doesn’t match with feminine or masculine conventions.) She cited examples where she tried entering the bathroom and was stopped by a teacher without being asked about her gender identity. She finds it disheartening as “just because [she doesn’t] physically look like it doesn’t mean that [she is] not nonbinary or gender non-conforming.” Senior Adriann MonohanDasilva expresses similar feelings,

ASL BATHROOMS CANDYMEN CAREER CLIMATE as she recalled a time she attempted to use the bathroom and a teacher stopped her stating that “those bathrooms are for non-binary students only.” Dasilva was distraught at the fact that the teacher “looked at [them] and said “oh these are all girls” which Dasilva believes “defeats the whole point of the bathroom.” Due to the lack of clarity, there is a misunderstanding of who can use the bathrooms and the real purpose of them in the school. Dasilva stated that her understanding of the bathrooms was that “anybody could go in there.” However, “based on how teachers keep changing what they’re saying,” she is unclear of the true intent behind them. Similarly, Senior Alex Boisette feels as though the school should have turned to student voices for input when adding the bathrooms. Alongside the issue involving the difference between the gender neutral and gender non-conforming label, Boisette feels as though the bathrooms accomplish the opposite of their intended purpose; since the bathrooms are being overrun by people abusing it, it is making the

COLLEGE COUNCIL DRESSCODE FLEX FOOTBALL people it was originally intended to help (non binary and transitioning students) “feel less safe than they were before.” She believes much of this could have been averted with more input from the students. “An email should’ve been sent out with a survey asking how the students would feel about a gender neutral bathroom.” Freshman Jazlyn Martinez recognizes that Malden High School meant well, stating that the “idea was good, what [Malden High was] trying to do was good but [the bathrooms] are being used for the wrong reasons.” Although many student voices at Malden High School expressed their concerns about how the bathrooms are being used currently, they also recognize the school’s efforts towards making Malden High School a place where all students can “feel comfortable.” Amid the negative effects the gender neutral bathrooms have caused, the students also pointed out the positive aspects of the bathrooms being added to the school. Hayes expressed that “[she] thinks it’s a good move because we

KEYCLUB NEDLAM NEWSTAFF SUPERINTENDENT VOLLEYBALL want to make everyone feel comfortable and make sure everyone has a safe space.” Students who felt like they maybe don’t identify as male or female no longer feel like they don’t have a place to go and have a place that fits them and how they choose to identify. Senior Damien Cuevas also stated that “[he] feels like it’s inclusive to the LGBTQ+ community and it is very positive.” Principal Mastrangelo recognizes that the bathrooms have had a rocky introduction, however he is adamant that they were done in the name of inclusivity and tolerance for non binary, genderfluid, and transitioning students at MHS. One of his biggest goals is making sure that everybody “feels safe and welcomed...and that everybody has an equitable opportunity to be successful.” This story is ongoing at Malden High School. This article is meant to highlight the opinions of students regarding the topic. Further developments will be reported on at



The Blue and Gold October 2021

From the Editor’s Desk: On Student Voice


elcome back to school, friends! As we begin our return to in-person learning and our regularly scheduled coverage of local and sports events, I would like to emphasize the importance of student journalism, especially in times like these. Now, when people say “times like these,” they are generally referring to the pandemic and the state of the world today. I would also like to acknowledge that on top of the pandemic, students are dealing with transitioning into a new schedule, readjusting to social life, balancing responsibilities at home and in school, and juggling commitments, all while trying to sneak in more than a few hours of sleep a night to do it again the next day. The point is, everyone is overwhelmed and there is a lot happening (which is maybe even an understatement). When I start to feel consumed by life,

my method of coping is writing in a journal. However, nowadays, I rarely have the luxury of time to write every time something inconveniences me. So, what do I do? I turn to people who feel the same way as me and find comfort in the camaraderie. This is why I think student voice is so important because we coexist with nearly 2,000 other people here at Malden High, many of whom are bound to share the same feelings we have. You know when something has been on your mind for a while, and someone is finally able to put it into words, and it is like everything makes sense and you feel a little less lonely? I want students and members of the community that read our paper to feel like what they are going through is part of a collective. Principal Mastrangelo is going to love this, but for a lack of a better phrase, I want people to feel as if “they are not alone.” The best way to accomplish this is to promote the voice of our student body, faculty and members of the community of Malden, and convey their messages through our stories. This is not to take the focus away from our coverage of traditional events, but I wanted to underscore the importance of human connection after the year we had spent chronically online. You can only connect to people on a certain level via Google Meets; the same

goes when covering a football game or student council fundraiser, but when writing about topics such as academic stress, college applications, unfair school policy, losing friends, managing a job and homework, not making the soccer team, the up-close and face-to-face stories, it opens up a conversation and opportunity to bring people closer together. To simply know that you are not alone in your thoughts and feelings when it is so easy to feel isolated in these times, is the kind of impact I want The Blue and Gold to have. As an editorial staff, this year we want to make the shift into the contemporary news world and explore different types of media. Our team is very passionate about podcasting and audio formats, photo projects, and exploring different layouts on social media. We are also looking to branch out in terms of writing about non-traditional topics and opinion pieces that truly represent the voices of Malden High. During the pandemic, we realized that we took for granted all the local events and the convenience of being in the building to conduct interviews. Now that we are finally back in school, we want to take advantage of all the opportunities that are available to us. Making sure that our student body and community is kept up-to-date and informed is one of our highest priorities.

Reporting in the last year has taught us a lot about perseverance and hard work. Journalism is not easy; it is more than just interviewing people and writing articles—it is about connecting with the people around us and the art of storytelling. Whether it is a local event that brings people together or a volleyball game won by teamwork, every article should address a larger theme or message, something that our readers will take along with them on their day. As this is my last year in the class, I hope to be able to leave as much of an impact on the newspaper and reporters as the editors that came before me. They truly shaped me into becoming the editor-in-chief I am today. I look forward to these last few months and sharing stories that we can be proud of.

Julie Huynh Editor-in-Chief

Editorial Policy

Nedlam’s Corner

Nedlam’s Corner is a safe space to ask about anything you may be experiencing in your life, both academically and socially. Nedlam is here to offer advice. Although I will know who wrote the submissions, you are able to opt out of having your name reflected here.

The Blue and Gold is an open forum for student expression. It is produced by students for the school and the community. The views presented in this paper are not necessarily those of the advisor or the school administration. The views presented in the editorials are those of the editors-in-chief or guests. The goal of The Blue and Gold is to inform and entertain students as well as the community regarding issues that we feel are important. We strongly encourage readers to respond to material printed in the form of signed letters to the editors. No libelous, malicious, defamatory, obscene, or unsigned material will be printed. The Blue and Gold reserves the right to edit the letters. Names may be withheld upon request. Not all letters will be printed. Although The Blue and Gold appreciates the support of advertisers, we may refuse any advertisement that violates the above policy or that promotes products questionable to student use. Any correspondence concerning this publication should be directed to Mr. Ryan Gallagher’s room in J387 or to his mailbox in the main office.

To submit a question to Nedlam for a chance for it to be answered in next month’s edition of The Blue and Gold, go to

The Blue and Gold c/o Malden High School 77 Salem Street Malden, MA 02148


The Blue and Gold October 2021


My Clothes Are Not a Distraction Karen Riveira Managing Editor


istraction. Our brains’ worst enemy. In the Merriam-Webster’s dictionary, it is defined as “an object that directs one’s attention away from something else.” At various high schools around the country, it is the justification in student handbooks for clothing restrictions to the female student body. Just recently, Sydney Smith, a senior at Glen Allen High School located in Henrico County Virginia, started a petition to abolish her school’s dress code. The Henrico Citizen wrote an article on Smith showcasing her efforts to get rid of the school’s dress code that she feels “objectifies women and targets people of color” in her school. Smith created a survey that gained “more than 1,150 signatures as of Oct. 4.” Her research showed that of the 250+ people who participated in the study “female students were three times as likely to get dresscoded.” This example is just one of many that show how girls everywhere are told to cover up in order to avoid disrupting the

over-sexualize female body parts. If the purpose of a dress code is to minimize distractions in the classroom and make a learning environment that is ideal for all students, then the real question is where do the distractions truthfully come from? Is it a stomach that is disrupting the class or is the time it takes for someone to come into the room and pull a student out to change into a new shirt? Do shoulders direct focus off of the lesson and onto a body, or is it the teacher putting the class on pause to write a pass and call out my choice of clothing? Our thighs, legs, stomachs, bra straps, and shoulders should not be distracting. It is sad that we are teaching young women to be uncomfortable in their own skin. We are raising generations of girls to feel as if it is their responsibility to conform to society’s ideals of modesty and ensure they are covering up their bodies in order to prevent their male classmates from being uncomfortable or distracted. Rather than empowering young women and making them feel comfortable in a space where they come to learn, schools across the country are shaming them for having disruptive bodies. If something as simple as a col-

larbone is causing students to be so disoriented that they cannot focus on the material being taught to them, I believe the real problem lies far beyond what a girl chooses to wear that day. What a girl chooses to wear to school should not be a reflection of her intelligence, selfrespect, or potential in the real world. No student should feel like she must overthink what she chooses to wear to school in the mornings, for the fear of being told that it is inappropriate and will disrupt her classmates. If the dress code is teaching students anything, it is that rather than putting limitations on the clothing the female student body can wear, we should be teaching our male students and any students basic social skills such as proper etiquette and respect. We should not be forced to follow rules that encourage slut-shaming and keep our sexist society alive along with our outdated dress code and idea of professionalism. It is time to re-write and replace the outdated dress code and give our female students a chance to feel comfortable and safe in their own skin.

Vacation to Morocco

Chaimaa Assli Head Copy Editor orocco is a small country located in North Africa that has a lot of different foods and traditions. With all of its beautiful beaches and historical spots, it is a perfect place to go for a vacation. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, I have not been able to visit my family there for the past three years, but this year I finally got the chance to go. My family and I managed to visit quite a few places.


educational environment. They are told that the outfits they felt comfortable enough to leave their houses in are inappropriate. Shoulders are inappropriate; collar bones are disconcerting; exposed midriffs and stomachs immodest, and legs are far too scandalous. The list goes on, naming every piece of clothing girls are not allowed to bring to school. Skirts, shorts and dresses must reach the mid-thigh. Shirts must be full lengthed, and jeans cannot have too many rips in them. As I read the many rules and items written specifically for the female students across many student handbooks, I find it funny to see that the only real restriction the male students have is profanity or abusive language on their shirts and no sagging pants. It is evident that the dress code in its entirety is written strictly for girls, however, the underlying problem is with how outdated it truly is. In the summer girls are prohibited from wearing shorts, skirts, tank tops, or strapless tops because it is seen as “unprofessional” and will direct student and staff attention away from their day-to-day tasks. Rather than making girls “cover-up” we should be teaching male faculty and students to not

A beach in El Mansouria.

Some of the boats that are used for fishing.

The hills in Zaneta.

Fruits and vegetables are sold in carts in Moroccan souqs.

Want to read more about Morocco? Scan this QR code to visit the story on The Blue and Gold’s website, where we also publish the rest of our stories!



The Blue and Gold October 2021

Frightening Legends of Malden Julie Huynh Editor-in-Chief


ou can’t run from the candyman. Since school started up, there have been multiple sightings of the candymen. That’s right, candymen, plural. Roaming the halls and disturbing lunch tables, stopping by classrooms in between periods, taking shortcuts through open windows, you can’t escape them. They’re in every corner and staircase from Boyle to Brunelli. Just imagine this: it’s too hot in your classroom. You innocently ask your teacher to crack open the window. You wander into the hallway for a breath of fresh air. Before you know it, you fall victim to $2 Fritos (or Sour Patch, yikes!) and the perpetrator has escaped through the window! No one is safe….


y the way, an anonymous candyman wants everyone to know they don’t have change for 50s. It’s a candy business. They “don’t do that.”

Potential candymen spotting outside Jenkins window. Photo anonymously submitted.

“There are some days the cafeteria doesn’t have any food that I find appetizing and the candy business comes in clutch. The other day they saved me from starving during my math class with a bag of cookies, sour patch kids, and hot Cheetos. 5/5 stars would recommend.” - Former Class of ‘22 President Jennifer Machado.


n the topic of local legends, Ephraim Gray, or the Immortal Man of Malden, was

a reclusive man who lived in the town in the 1800s. No one is sure whether he was born here, or if not, where he came from since the only person that he really talked to was his manservant, who he hired to deal with anything that had to do with social interaction. Gray spent most of his time in a big house in the center of town, focusing on his area of study, chemistry. His neighbors began noticing foul odors coming from the house but never cared enough to see what he was doing in there. Despite being an eccentric figure, Gray went largely unnoticed until his death sometime in the 1850s-60s. His manservant reported to the Malden Police Department that his master had died in his sleep, but this isn’t where the story ends. All along, Gray had been working on an elixir that would grant him immortality, but seeing that he had passed before perfecting the formula, his wishes were that his body be preserved and buried immediately with no embalming, autopsy, or dissecting. Gray believed that even though he failed to reach immortality in this lifetime, his experiments would at least allow for his body to be perfectly preserved. His corpse was transported to one of Malden’s cemeteries and placed in a mausoleum. Having no next of kin, Gray’s servant inherited his estate and all of his belongings. He lived in the home until he passed away only a few years later. Fast forward to 1870, when the story of Ephraim Gray reached two Harvard medical Excerpt from the book Haunted Massachusetts by Cheri students. They were curious to see if the rumors of Gray’s immortality were true, so they Revai. Photo submitted by Stephen Nedell. made their way to the cemetery in the middle of the night, breaking into the crypt. When the students pried off the lid of Gray’s coffin, they were stunned to find a corpse with not a single trace of rot or death, even after nearly two decades. Shocked, they resealed the coffin and left. This was the version they told people. Another story claims that one of the medical students brought a saw that they used to cut off Gray’s head, but something scared him in the process causing all of them to run off, leaving the body and severed head behind. In 1900, the cemetery was relocated for the construction of new roads, which required Gray’s tomb to be moved to a new location. When the workers came to move his body, they realized that his coffin was lighter than normal. Opening it up, they discovered that it was empty. Now, what do you think happened to Ephraim Gray? Did he even exist in the first place? Did his formula work but take years to kick in? The earliest record of this story comes from Folklorist and Harvard student Edward Rowe Snow (1902-1982), who claimed that the medical students did in fact remove the corpse’s head. They heard moans and footsteps within the tomb that scared them away, leaving them to abandon Gray’s body. He mentioned that after this incident, the tomb door was known to fling open at the stroke of twelve, revealing the body of Gray crawling out of his coffin and wandering the cemetery, supposedly in search of his head. Very Sleepy Hollow-esque… From a factual standpoint, there are no records on an Ephraim Gray (or Graves, as he is sometimes referred to) in the Births, Marriages, and Deaths of Malden, Massachusetts book which documents residents from 1649-1850. There are a few Grays in there, but none with the same first name as our mysterious fellow. It is very likely that Ephraim was born outside of Malden, and his exact death date could have been after 1850, excluding him from these records. The interesting part about the cemeteries in Malden is that all four of the current-day ones (Holy Cross, Forestdale, Maplewood, and St. Mary’s), were all established after 1851, meaning that Gray’s body and records could have easily been lost in the process of renovation. As far as history says, Ephraim Gray did not exist. There are no records of birth or death, pictures of his house or gravesite, and very little information about him online or in writing. Could his story be a product of bored Harvard students? A campfire story that got passed down through the years? For a town that has been around since the start of the country, a lot about Malden’s history goes unsaid. Don’t you ever wonder what other secrets are buried underneath the ground?

One of the many wonderful powers of a librarian is the ability to research the truth. I have investigated the town records of Malden and other resources and found no reference to any person named Ephraim Gray having ever lived or died here. Every retelling of the legend is suspiciously vague about where Gray supposedly lived or when he died. Even the tale of his burial does not match up with any cemetery in Malden. The Legend of the Headless Ghost of Malden is no more true than any other spooky tale told around a campfire or at a sleepover. - Malden Public Schools Librarian Stephen Nedell

The Blue and Gold October 2021



Flex Program: “You Are Not Alone” When Dealing with Stress Lulu Harding Editor-in-Chief of Web & Mobile Apps Juliana Luong Head of Sports Lily Nguyen Reporter


t is now approaching the end of October, and students have begun to experience the academic rigor of high school—an inevitably drastic change from the previous virtual school year. In high school, stress is multifaceted. It can stem from having to practice rigorously in dedication to a sport, sending in countless college applications, caring for siblings while taking on a pile of homework, dealing with sudden onsets of assessments, and too many other factors. Students are then left facing a difficult question: how can they balance school and life? As students and faculty alike adjust to an altered school setting, Malden High School has sought to address these concerns with the introduction of Flex Block this year. Flex Block is an 85-minute period divided into two segments: the first is “Enrichment”, where students concentrate on academic tasks/project-based learning; and after that is “Joy”, where they can take part in one of many staffhosted activities of their choice. The block occurs on Gold Days, allowing high schoolers to temporarily escape from academic distress and do something they enjoy. Flex Block is divided into cycles, where students can access a selection of Enrichment and Joy sessions from the “Edficiency” website, only one click away from Malden High School’s Clever portal. They can apply for a session that piques their curiosity. Each cycle is expected to last around three weeks and cut to two after the new year, allowing students to experience more activities. The program, which commenced in early September this year, was designed to offer students both additional academic enrichment opportunities and another avenue to explore their interests. During its creation, Principal Chris Mastrangelo voiced understanding for how academically demanding high school is and found it “unfortunate witnessing the amount of pressure students put on themselves.” Academic stress then became an important foundation of building Flex Block. Mastrangelo has felt “incredibly pleased” with the outcome thus far and can say likewise for other faculty members who helped build the program. Caitlin Quinn, guidance coun-

selor of Holland house for grades 1012 who assumed Flex leader alongside Ms. Jessica Bisson, expressed her enthusiasm for Flex Block as a “huge win.” She emphasized the socializing aspect of the program, “something [students and teachers] have missed from a world before the pandemic,” and hoped that the opportunity for new interactions with peers will “continue in the hallways and in future classes.” English teacher Brian Wong voiced his feelings about his “Hip Hop Legends” Joy session, saying “It is important to expose people to music from different decades…” and that he “found that many students haven’t heard things outside of a very narrow band of music.”The reason why he set it up is for students to “talk about music...there’s just so much music out there that students might actually like if they heard it.” Adding to the importance of the Flex Block, Shauna Campbell, a Marine Biology teacher who is hosting fish tank setups for Enrichment and board games for Joy block, said “[She] thinks Flex Block is a good way to learn about things in a more student-centered way because the groups are small and students can dictate what we are doing.” Spanish teacher Elena Mayer is offering Capoeira for her Joy block, which is an Afro-Brazilian martial art form. Mayer explains that “It involves songs in Portuguese, various rhythms that dictate different styles of playing, self-defense, gymnastics, and swag,” and “is all about decolonization and familiar to many students already because [Malden High has] such a large Brazilian-American community here.” Furthermore, she emphasizes that “students can work out, play some music, sing, and learn another language all at once. Most importantly, it’s fun.” For her Enrichment period, senior Yusra Tafraoui is taking Play Production Workspace. Being in Play Production since her sophomore year, she loves having the opportunity to take this time during the day to “work on rehearsing lines and choreography.” Currently, the group is working on practicing for their production of Gypsy the Musical, and “after a year not being able to participate in Play Production,” she appreciates having this extra time to work on her big role with others in preparing for their upcoming performance in November. Another aspect of Flex Block that many seniors have found helpful is having the opportunity to work on college applications and think about other post-graduationrelated plans during the school day. Senior Mackenzie Brennen is

currently taking the College/Career Application Support for her Enrichment period with Holland house guidance counselor Caitlin Quinn, and says that she likes it because “it allows [her] to get direct help from Ms. Quinn without having to make an appointment.” She explained that having this time built into the school day has made it easier to get feedback on her application. Taryn Belowsky, a Brunelli guidance counselor, hosts a similar Enrichment period where she provides college and career preparation for seniors and acknowledges the great opportunity for “students to have additional support” and “bond with them more regularly.” Also the co-coordinator of an outdoor walking and talking session alongside Ms. Fornash for Joy, Belowsky loves “being able to get out of the building for a little while” and “continue bonding with students” with the conversational aspect of the activity. For his Joy block, sophomore Harrison Ashley appreciates how it “lets [him] take a break from the academic aspect of school for a little [while].” Ashley is currently taking stress-relief and coloring with Melanie Cabral, and he enjoys having the time to “chill out during the day” as well as being able to socialize with friends he doesn’t normally have classes with. Other students find “joy” in being able to do more activities that interest them. Freshman Marc Naceus is one of many students partaking in racquet sport activities hosted by Mark Gagnon in the gymnasium. Naceus appreciates that it has “taken off some of the weight” from academic stress, and “if it didn’t bring enough heat, [he] can change it in [the next cycle].” Junior Jose Mejia Guerrero, who is participating in a study for Enrichment and board games for Joy, also adds “[He] does not have any complaints about the Flex Block.” Melissa Sheehan, English teacher and hosting a grade nine English support for Enrichment and silent reading space for Joy, says “[She] thinks one thing that could be improved about Flex Block is how [teachers] take attendance and hold students accountable to their sessions,” and that “[She] has a lot of students on [her] roster who have never shown up.” The Flex Block options filling up quickly have also had a large impact on how students feel about going to their Enrichment and Joy blocks in general, perhaps being a reason for this attendance issue. An anonymous junior at Malden High brought up that “for the waiting list, some people are really looking forward to joining a certain block, but then other people already fill it

up.” If these blocks become filled up, students are placed in a completely random class that they are not able to switch out of until the three weeks is up. Additionally, she explains that “if [they] don’t choose on time, people end up choosing for [them], so [they] really don’t enjoy [Flex Block] for the time being and then it ends up being a very extended amount of time that [they are] just bored.” Along with there not being enough room in many of the popular Joy and Enrichment classes, junior Christel Jean-Baptiste points out how “there aren’t enough options to choose what [students] are really interested in.” She suggests having more options for popular Joy and Enrichment blocks that students are more interested in and want to be a part of. Junior Michelle Dang feels that “the short time for Flex Block is jarring and should be improved.” Similarly, senior Danny Du agrees that “having two split blocks as Enrichment and Joy . . . should just be one block.” Sophomore Victor Desouza says that overall he likes that Flex Block gives him “some time to pursue what [he wants] to do.” However, similar to Dang, he also mentions that “if [they] were given more time during Flex Block, it would be a lot better.” Desouza brings up the suggestion to switch periods 3 or 6 and Flex Block. “Instead of whatever class [they] have determining what lunch [they] have, instead, [they would] have the class where Flex Block is and Flex Block during [the lunch period].” Another aspect of Flex Block that many students think there should be improvements to is the website Edficiency. Senior Mateus Flaherty states that “[he thinks] that the interface is really annoying.” This past cycle, for his Joy block, Flaherty originally signed up for video games with teacher Gregory Simone. However, not knowing that this class had filled up, “[he] had no idea [he] was in [another] class until the day of.” Flaherty “feel[s] like [they] should at least get better notification when [they’re] not in a class,” and if they don’t get into their first choice, they are given the option to choose another class. Flex has currently entered its third rotation, where students can continue exploring the several Enrichment and Joy sessions offered. Still a relatively new application in the schedule, Mr. Mastrangelo had acknowledged that “[Flex Block] was a big undertaking and may be one or two cycles away from its optimum,” but he envisioned that the program will be well-conditioned in Malden High’s future.


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The Blue and Gold October 2021

The Blue and Gold October 2021

National News

9 Continued from page 1. sachusetts Youth Climate Coalition have five demands. According to the Fridays for Future MA. Instagram, the first is to “create, fight for, and execute climate justice policy inclusively and transparently.” This means involving youth in all aspects of the political process regarding climate justice policies, “delivering consistent messages to youth activists and allies” and transparency regarding the process behind passing these bills. The second demand is to “ center environmental justice” around dismantling racism, classism and other systems of oppression. This means defunding and dismantling those systems that create and enforce climate and social crises, banning dangerous or polluting energy infrastructures and providing “housing protections, renovations, mitigations and adaptation projects.” The third demand is to set and enforce “bold science-based renewable energy targets” such as reducing economy-wide climate pollution by 60% by 2030 and set “interim emission targets every 5 years” with severe financial and legal penalties to both the government and “industry players” who do not comply. The fourth demand is to fund a “just transition with progressive taxation and corporate polluter fees.” This means making all taxes “highly progressive” and redistributing them and reinvesting the wealth in “critical public projects, especially for climate mitigation” and implement an economy-wide corporate polluter fee within one year. The last demand is to reform climate and civics education to encourage “youth participation.” This means teaching students about fair labor law and unions to “build a just transition” and provide classes that focus on real-world problems such as climate change. Starting at 3:00 pm, protesters organized themselves at the intersection of Charles and Beacon Street entrance to the Boston Gardens. Bearing bright neon jackets, organizers taught the protesters several chants, including “What do

we want? Climate Justice! When do we want it? Now!” and asked protesters to keep their masks on to ensure the event is covid safe. Despite this, anti-vaccine protesters merged themselves with the climate strike protesters. Moving up Beacon Street, the climate strike protesters marched up to the State House. Disconnecting themselves with the Climate Strike protesters, anti-vaccine protesters led the crowd up the State House. Chanting “Hey Hey! Ho-Ho! The MTA has got to go!”, a parody of the Climate Strike protesters chant “Hey Hey! Ho-Ho! Fossil Fuels has got to go!”, the Anti-Vaccine protesters were criticising the teachers union. Quickly taking up the foot of the State House, the Anti-Vaccine protesters urged the Climate Strike protesters to leave as they stood on the street protesting, maintaining a clear distinction between the Climate Strike protesters and the AntiVaccine Protesters. Climate Strike organizer Divya Nandan found it “incredibly frustrating how deeply people believe misinformation” but was proud of the Climate Strike protesters for “being calm and continuing what they were there to do.” Despite this, there was some conflict between the Climate Strike protesters. Nandan states that the “[Massachusetts Youth Climate Coalition] and [Fridays for Future MA] did not encourage anyone to engage with the [Anti-Vaccine protesters].” The march continued as Climate Strike protesters made a right down Park Street followed by another right down Tremont Street before entering Boston Common on the Tremont Street entrance. The march concluded at the Soldiers and Sailors Monument, where the demonstration was held. In a statement made by the Fridays for Future MA, the Climate Strike march and demonstration were not permitted. It is “[a] symbolically important signal that police are not welcome to join the event”. Fridays for Future Ma explained that “[they] take the intersection of climate and racial justice very seriously, including the long history of police and military protecting the fossil fuel industry against activists.”

Speaker Jade Woods speaking out about her experience with how climate change affected her home state of Louisiana. Photo by Brandon Wong.

A climate activist protesting. Photo taken by Brandon Wong.

Climate Strike protesters chanting. Photo taken by Brandon Wong.

Extinction Rebellion protesters at the Climate Strike. Photo taken by Brandon Wong.

Representatives of the Massachusetts Teachers Association (MTA) at the Climate Strike. Photo taken by Brandon Wong.



The Blue and Gold October 2021

Malden High Offers with Arrival of Daniela Ioannides

Kalagher, as well as the rest of the language department, felt as though “ASL would be a good starting point or a few years now, American because it would be very popular.” Previously, there were no Sign Language (ASL) has been a highly requested addition to the language requirements to graduate World Language Department. This from MHS; however, starting with year, the Malden High School staff the Class of 2025, things are differwelcomes Daniella Ioannides to ent. Kalagher stated that they would Malden as the school’s first ASL have to take a language for two years, just like how everyone takes Gym or teacher. Ioannides was born deaf and English. She added that “hopefully grew up in Northampton, a small- [they will] be adding onto [their] detown in the western part of Mas- partment and adding languages, as sachusetts, a stark contrast from the well as keeping ASL.” Kalagher also bustling Malden. She would go on hopes that ASL will “open people’s to study at Gallaudet University, the eyes to interact with people who are top university for deaf people in the deaf and hard ofhearing.” US. Kalagher stated that “[she] Sharon Kalagher, Span- sees Ioannides regularly.” While ish teacher and World Language Kalagher said that she does try to teacher-leader, explained that the work with Ioannides’ interpreter, faculty recognized the desire for she added that they “communicate ASL and additional non-Romance pretty well without the interpreter.” languages like Chinese or Arabic. While it can be a bit tricky to communicate, “[Ioannides] is open to using technology” and after Kalagher types, oftentimes Ioannides signs back. Even so, Kalagher admitted that she is Ms. Ioannides teaching her Period 1 about non manual expresstill worksion. Photo taken by Carlos Aragon. ing on her Carlos Aragon Editor-in-Chief of Print


fluency in ASL. Ioannides has been teaching ASL for over 25 years now. Having learned it in 1990, Ioannides began teaching it in 1995. While she majored in psychology at Gallaudet, she is glad she decided to leave the field. Ioannides said that she feels as though “[she has] been teaching for years” even before becoming a teacher, adding that “teaching is in [her] blood.” While ASL may be a bit different to teach than a language like Spanish due to its visual nature, Ioannides stated that “both are languages” so the idea is generally similar, just a different form of expression. In previous years, Ioannides has taught both English and ASL to children simultaneously. She stated that they were particularly wonderful experiences because she has to think of how “[the kids] will think without language to begin with.” She recalled one boy who was an immigrant from Honduras, who came to the US. “[She] had to use gestures, and then shift into ASL.” Senior Juliana Davidson, one of Ioannides’s students, stated that she is very excited about the class. Davidson is a Child of a Deaf Adult (CODA), and she stated that her mother mostly lip-reads and they oftentimes communicate through gestures. Davidson hopes to “bring [ASL] home and teach it to her.” Davidson stated that she is eager to learn more about the foundations of ASL and “deaf history and culture” and is happy that Ioannides

Photo taken by Carlos Aragon. is teaching both topics. She is also looking forward to slowly learning more about her by signing throughout the year. Outside of teaching, Ioannides stated that she loves genealogy, studying family trees, and reading about the topic. She also loves to watch the TV show Amazing Interiors, adding that she finds it fascinating how people create interiors that normally would not be observable from the outside. Teaching at MHS, Ioannides has found that her favorite part about the school is the diversity among the students. While teaching in Lawrence, she observed that the majority of students were Spanish, but here it is “totally different.” Overall, the addition of the ASL class to the language department and Ioannides to the MHS faculty has shown to be an incredible decision and one that should have been established a long time ago.

Ray McKenzie Returns as a New Lily Nguyen and Sophie LeBlanc Reporters


alden High School has welcomed more new staff and faculty members than ever this school year. Among these new additions, Ray McKenzie, a former staff member, returns as a math teacher in the Special Education department. Raised in Braintree, Massachusetts, McKenzie had been familiar with the Boston area since his youth.

Photo taken by Brandon Wong.

As an alumnus of UMass Boston, Mckenzie graduated in 2016 with a Bachelors’s degree in English and a concentration in Creative Writing. Recently, McKenzie celebrated his completion of a teaching licensure program through Fitchburg State University and anticipates finishing his Master’s in Education. McKenzie had been tutoring in the Boston area before arriving at Malden in 2016. The immense diversity of Malden attracted him to work at the Malden High School where he served as a math co-teacher in Algebra 1 alongside math teachers Bradley Gelling and Chris Giordano. McKenzie also administered a support class for students. When he hosted an individual classroom for the first time, McKenzie shared that this experience “confirmed for [him] that [he] wanted to pursue co-teaching. [He] enjoy[ed] the relationship-building aspect of [his] new position, and [he] gets a lot of satisfaction from making sure that [his] students have what they need

to be successful.” However in 2018, a family emergency forced McKenzie to work closer to home, marking a temporary departure from Malden. During this period, he continued his role as a paraprofessional at Braintree High School while pursuing his ambition of becoming a certified educator. With his return in Special Education at Malden High this year, McKenzie credited former math teacher Tom Snarsky for introducing him to the role of a “math coteacher substitute position” in the department. Given his English degree, McKenzie “was [not] thrilled about it at first but now looks back at that time fondly.” He remarked on the “wonderful group of students” that he encountered early in his experience “whom [he] really enjoyed working with.” Words from his colleagues also expressed contentment of working with McKenzie. Math Teacher Bradley Gelling explained that the

teacher may “come off as very professional, soft-spoken, and maybe a little shy; but once you get to know him, he is entertaining. As he opens up, people know he’s got a good sense of humor.” Gelling also commented that McKenzie’s shift from the traditional classroom to Special Education “fits him better,” as “he can make more sincere connections with the students.” Ray McKenzie teaching. Photo by Brandon Wong Algebra 1 teacher Chris Giordano mentioned that McKenzie is “compassionate and [able to] empathize with the students and his fellow teachers”, explaining that he is “always thoughtful about their emotional well-being.” Further, math teacher Kayla Scheitlin commented on McKenzie entering the department, believing that “he took his love of working for students and transferred that into a role where he can focus on that even more.” Scheitlin also acknowledged that “his devotion to meeting the

The Blue and Gold October 2021



Malden High Welcomes New Math Teacher Joshua Kolodny Ashton Calixte and Jessica Li Reporters


alden High School is welcoming over thirty new staff members to its faculty this fall, one of which is an addition to the math department: Joshua Kolodny, who is teaching Math 1. Raised in Sudbury, MA, Kolodny held numerous aspira-

Photo submitted by Joshua Kolodny.

tions as a child. Though when he was a kid he planned to be a science teacher, architect, engineer, doctor, and computer scientist, then came his sophomore year at Emmanuel College, where he received his Undergraduate Bachelor’s Degree, when Kolodny realized he wanted to share his knowledge and passion with students. Kolodny later graduated with a Master’s Degree in Math Education from Boston University. He worked for two years as a math instructor, the first at MATCH Charter Public School. Kolodny acknowledged “one of [his] biggest accomplishments is seeing that the work is starting to pay off: seeing students learn [and] become better mathematicians makes [him] feel like [he is] doing something right.” Despite thoroughly enjoying all facets of math education, Kolodny’s favorite “is the students, [who

continually] motivate [him] to work.” Kayla Schietlin, the math teacher-leader who was involved in hiring Kolodny commented, “Mr. Kolodny [is] friendly, eager, and warm. He has a great personality with his students, and is working hard to make math engaging and meaningful to them.” Kolodny has “always liked the process of studying for a quiz [and] working on the problems. [He is] trying to spread that same joy and give other people the tools [he has],” in hopes that it will “foster a lifelong passion for them as well.” “He is very action-oriented,” explained Susannah Miller, who was enrolled in the same BU program as Kolodny. “If there’s something that he wants to try, he’ll do it,” Kolodny wants “to create an environment where students feel comfortable talking to their teacher, know what to expect and be ensured they will receive the best education [he] can possibly give.” The students find Kolodny humorous and feel connected with him as though he were another student. One of them “think[s] math is hard but [Kolodny] really helps out when [they] need it and [they] get how to do the work after. He is a chill and relaxed teacher which is needed for students.” Kolodny reinforced these ideas by saying “[he’s] excited to be part of the positive change at Malden High School. The staff and the stu-

dents come from totally different backgrounds, but [are] all here for a common goal and that’s to improve [themselves] whether it be the teachers who want to become better teachers [or] students who want to become better students,” he continued. He stressed the importance of striving to “be yourself and be the best self you can be.” This is reiterated by his co-teacher, Victoria Atkinson, who detailed, “he seems very eager to do the best possible job that he can do.” Kolodny is “excited to see people embrace who they are, embrace their own diversity, embrace their own background, and use that to make them the best possible version they want to be.” His favorite part about Malden High School is the “sense of community, coupled with diversity.” He stated, “[it is] a diverse school and [does] a really good job at making sure everyone feels included, and [he] has been lucky enough to be a part of [the] community.” In his free time, Kolodny builds computers, plays fantasy football, weight lifts and enjoys video games—he is even considering “finding a way to make video games work for 40 minutes in a Joy Block.” Jenkins House Principal Jayson Payeur described Kolodny as “laidback, really nice, a supportive team player [and] good fit for the Jenkins academy.” He emphasized, “[the school is] lucky [to have him].”

Special Education Math Teacher needs of all learners in his class and doing his best to support them” makes the new role more fitting for McKenzie. Pamela MacDonald, the newly appointed Assistant Superintendent of Student Services for Malden Public Schools, prided in McKenzie’s teaching qualities. “A lot of our students in Special Education feel nervous and disengage because of academic struggles. To have a teacher in this department that has the will to go out and engage them is exactly what we need. We ensure they meet our students’ needs and help them gain the optimal benefits from their education. And so, [McKenzie’s] ability to do that is extraordinary.” While McKenzie’s new role fits him well, he also addressed some difficulties he encountered as a special educator. “[The students] sometimes needed a little extra support to keep up with the academic demands of high school math.” McKenzie continues, explaining that “[he] honestly didn’t know

what [he] was doing most of the time, but [he] worked very hard to make sure that what [he] offered them each day was as close to the support they needed to succeed as [he] could manage.” When he’s not teaching in the classroom, McKenzie enjoys “cooking, horror films, reading and writing poetry, video games and board games.” He is especially enthusiastic about sharing some of his favorite activities in his Tabletop Gaming Joy session, where he encourages “anyone interested in playing their favorite board and card games or trying new ones” to join. After many unorthodox and difficult months from teaching during the pandemic, McKenzie has hopes of “getting to know [his] students and colleagues better” this school year now that classes are inperson. He’s whirling into his new teaching role with high spirits, and students and staff are more than thrilled to see the joy he brings to Special Education.

Photo taken by Brandon Wong.



The Blue and Gold October 2021

MHS Alumna Haley Mallett Returns as New History Teacher after taking AP Government with Tivnan. Flash forward a few years, she his school year, Malden High works next door to Tivnan, who is School is welcoming over thirty now her mentor. According to the new staff members in its building, state, every staff member is assigned some of which are former students. a mentor in their first year. Being a Class of 2016 graduate Haley Mal- mentor encompasses everything lett returns to the school as a new from how to enter grades, how to addition to the History department, talk to parents, how to deal with teaching both U.S. and World His- class management, how to lesson tory courses. plan, etc. In her freshman year of high A key part of being a mentor is school, history was not Mallett’s being able to connect with the new strong suit. That is, until she had staff member. For Tivnan, that piece Richard Tivnan as her teacher. He came easy to him because he already was “sort of [like] any other history knew Mallett as a former student. teacher” she ever had, except he was He described her work ethic as be“energetic” and “interactive.” She ing “unreal” and pointed out how found class with him to be conver- “on top of everything” she is. From sational, and she had never really the short time she’s been in the known history to be that. From there building, he can tell that she is very on out, Mallett became interested in detail-oriented, punctual, and preU.S. history and politics, especially pared for anything that comes her way. He also voiced that he is “glad [Mallett] is here” because she was “such a great person to have in class as a student.” Mallett attended undergraduate school at Merrimack College in North Andover, studying both history and political science. She is currently in her last semester at Salem State University getting her Masters of Arts in Teaching for history education. In addition to that, Mallett is part of a certificate program at SSU for Holocaust and New history teacher Haley Mallett. Photo taken by genocide studies. Carlos Aragon. Julie Huynh Editor-in-Chief


Prior to working in her current position, Mallett served as a longterm substitute at Malden High at the end of last school year and was a summer school teacher as well. She felt that those opportunities “definitely did help” her adjust to becoming a permanent teacher, but it was a “bit nerve-wracking at first” for her to work with colleagues that used to be her teachers when she was once a fifteen year old in their rooms. After working out those initial nerves, Mallett thought it was “nice [to have] some comfortability” and “established relationships.” Being a former student that took many history classes and who became familiar with the department, she knew that she was “in good hands and well supported.” She felt “very fortunate to work alongside them.” Head of the History Department, Kerry Veritas, expressed that even though Mallett was “thrown into situations that [she was] not trained to do,” in reference to the sub position at the end of last year, she still “excelled, [demonstrating] a talent to adapt when given new situations.” The history department is “thrilled to have her” join them. Tivnan agreed with Veritas, pointing out that an important part of the job is to be prepared, and he can see that she is “three steps ahead of everything,” and it looks like “all the i’s are dotted and the t’s are crossed.” When Mallett filled in last year, it was “seamless” and she was able to pick up right where she left off this school year to hit the ground running. Some teachers take a little longer to get ready, and Tivnan believed that her knowing the place and not having to get used to how

the building runs has helped her a great deal. Mallett’s passion for the subject matter and teaching is clear. With both of her parents being educators, particularly her dad being a history teacher, she grew up traveling the country and visiting museums and historical sites. Her interest for history and political science only “solidified when [she] had Mr. Tivnan who showed [her] that history can be cool and interesting and fun and relevant.” Relevance is something that is so important to Mallett because she does not “believe in history where [they] just learn facts, take a test, and throw the knowledge away,” there has to be “some modern application, some connection to [their] lives.” She reflected that we live in a world where politics can be “very invasive of our lives,” everywhere you turn, every conversation you have, there can be a political element to that discussion. Part of being politically educated to Mallett is also understanding the history of those issues and statements. She believed that part of being a good citizen is to be informed so “[one] can actually have those discussions and work towards social progress.” In doing her job, she felt if she could take what she sees as “being wrong with the world: people not knowing enough and not knowing how to have those conversations,” and teaching her students how to do that, then she is “helping society progress in a sense.” Despite being a history teacher, Mallett looks to what could be better with the world in the future as inspiration for her work.

Malden High School Staff Welcomes Janelle Jalbert Zachary Nedell Lead Reporter


anelle Jalbert is a new teacher working with the new Recognizing Individual Success Everyday (R.I.S.E) program at Malden High School after coming off 14 years of paraprofessional work at Peabody public schools. Mastrangelo explained that “[MHS was] starting a whole new program this year called the R.I.S.E Program, which is a therapeutic program. [MHS] needs clinicians, and . . . also needs academic support. Jalbert is our STEM academic support person; she is going to oversee the students and assist them with their math and science work.” Jalbert was born in Salem, MA and she has stayed in the area for most of her life. Her high school education was at Peabody Veterans Memorial High School and Jalbert has two older brothers and one dog. She believes that “everyone can

learn in all different ways so [she] tries to find that way and cater to that style.” Although this is her first teaching job, she “always loved working with teenagers and helping them become the best human beings,” and Principal Mastrangelo has noticed “[she’s] got a great classroom set up; it’s very small, intimate and really welcoming. She seems to be very excited about being here.” Mastrangelo added, “the experience that she had was exactly what Malden High School needed for this position.” He remarked that “[she] had put [her] time in and was ready to make [a] move and [Masterangelo] was excited that Malden High School gets this opportunity.” Additionally, “[he] is thrilled because it was hard with more schools competing for fewer applicants.” Lisa Kingsley, the Pathways and Therapeutic Program Manager, noticed that “[Jalbert] is an exceptional listener for students; she re-

ally wants to understand where her students are coming from and what they have to say,” and Kinglsey thinks “our students benefit from that greatly.” Jalbert enjoys that Malden High School is warm and welcoming and “[she] would love to stay here. Everyone has made [her] first months of teaching a great experience.” Kingsley wanted to drive home the point of “Just how lucky [MHS is] to have her.” New teacher Janelle Jalbert. Photo taken by Zachary Nedell.

The Blue and Gold October 2021



Malden High School Alumnus Witche Exilhomme Returns as Head Football Coach want 60 on Thanksgiving.” Freker expressed tons of appreciation for Exilhomme and his new uring last year’s football sea- achievement. “[He] was thrilled son, there was a new face on when [MHS] got Exilhomme” bethe sideline and one that was quite cause “[they] were hoping to get the recognizable. That was MHS Alum- right coach to lead the team forward ni and first year teacher Witche and someone who had the right Exilhomme. The reason he was back qualities [they] were looking for and down on MacDonald Stadium’s coach Exilhomme was the right guy field last year would have big im- [they] needed to lead the program plications for this year. In the offsea- and help [their] student athletes.” son, now former head coach Steven Freker added on saying “he has Freker, would step down from his an incredible amount of football football coaching duties and pass knowledge, and most importantly, them on to Exilhomme. knowledge of dealing with life isBefore coming back home sues and with young student athto Malden, Exilhomme was the letes who need direction.” Defensive Coordinator at Milford Coach Freker said “he is an exAcademy which is one of the top cellent role model and has so much Prep schools in the nation. Last year to share from his own life experiencduring remote learning, Exilhomme es that will be so valuable for these had become one of the new teachers players as he coaches them this year at MHS and was teaching history. and in the future.” He continued on According to Malden High saying that, “he developed a good School’s Athletic Director Charlie relationship with the students and Conefrey, “[they] normally put a fellow coaches which [he has] a feelcommittee together consisting of ing will help the team a lot.” Christopher Mastrangelo, Stephanie Commenting on his own exSibley, [their] trainer Jennifer Sturte- periences with Malden’s football vant, [his] assistant Jeanne Marquar- program, Freker showed how much do, Dan Jurkowski and [himself] to he cared about the team and the interview candidates for any coach- amount of effort he put in. He stated ing positions at the high school.” how “it was a big honor” since One of the qualities that stood out “[he] played for Malden High when to Conefrey about Exilhomme was [he] was in high school” and “[he] “he is a Malden High School gradu- coached for 19 years in the 80s and ate [and] he played football for the 90s.” Freker expressed how he has program.” He said that “it is always been “able to come back to coach good to have someone come [back] baseball and football for the past and return to help out who is famil- several years and [he is] happy that iar with his surroundings, so [they [he] was able to see student-athletes are] really excited to have him as develop to become good citizens of head coach.” the school.” Some other goals that Conefrey One of Freker’s new responhad about the season regarded the sibilities still has him controlling players and their participation this the game in some form. Freker year. “[They] do not want any kids explained how he has “become an dropping out because of grades,” athletic sight manager for the athsaid Conefrey. He explained that letic department at home games for “[he] understand[s] if injuries football and other sports to support would take a player out, but [they] Conefrey who is the athletic direcdo not want anybody quitting on tor by being in charge of the game the team mid-season because this is management.” a start to rebuild the program.” He Coach Exilhomme was upfront had also mentioned that “however and passionate about his feelings many players [they] start the season about becoming the Head Coach and with, is the amount [they] want on what he plans to do with the prothe team to end the season,” because gram going forward. He explained if “[they] have 60 today, then [they] how he felt “extremely proud, it [is] something [he is] very excited about and [he is] excited about the future that [they] have as a coaching staff for the program so it [is] going to be very fun for the next few years.” Another great part he added was about his and the coaching staff’s commitment to the team. Exilhomme emphasized how “this [is Coach Exilhomme talking to the team after a not] something [his] play. Photo by Chaimaa Assli. coaching staff and Daniel O’Toole Lead Reporter


[him] joined because [they] are broke or have financial issues,” it is because “[they] joined to compete to be the top team in the state and [they] are ready to put in the work that is required on and off the field to reach that.” On top of that, “[their] coaching staff wants to teach kids how to be football players and that football does not stop on the field,” since “it continues to the classroom and when they become grown men and then if they want to start a family.” Exilhomme further stated that “[they] do not want it to just be on the field, but how the kids act in and out of school.” Talking more about his student-athletes, Exilhomme said Head Football Coach Witche Exilhomme analyzing a “[he is] excited about game. Photo by Brandon Wong. the number of players [they] have to be pushed and bullied around by because last year [they] finished them so we can challenge for the top with around 30 players, this year positions in the state.” The impressions of Coach Ex[they] had about 80 kids sign up.” He explained how as of right now, ilhomme’s first game were positive “[they are] at about 70, so [he is] ex- despite the team being down several cited to get kids to join the program starters and more injuries occurring and help build them for the years to during the game. Conefrey said “[he] think[s] [they] did really well come.” He followed with “this is a despite being down eight starters team that has been together for only and injuries to two other key starters around six weeks and not over a but [he] think[s] this team can come couple of months.” And so ”putting together and be fine.” He added that things together like [their] weight “[he] think[s] they played down to lifting program or installing new the very last second and they are doplays and teaching kids what goes ing the best with the personnel that into a football team has been a little they have.” Coach Freker echoed difficult, but [he is] proud of [the] Conefrey’s thoughts about the game players, especially [their] younger saying how “the game felt a lot players since they are stepping up closer than the final score and [they and competing with everyone.” are] looking forward to better days Exilhomme is ultimately “excited ahead.” Exilhomme mentioned that for next year because these young “within the first half [they] went guys will have more experience down another three starters, but a with [them] and they can come back lot of [their] guys hung in through to the field a lot stronger and faster it and [he is] really proud of them.” than they did their first season.” One issue that arose during the The goals Exilhomme wants game was the amount of penalties for his team and the coaching staff committed by Malden. Conefrey are the things you want to hear from said “if the team can clean up the someone who is a new head coach. penalties since [they] gave up too “[He] is bringing in a culture shift to many yards to penalties, [he] can change the mindsets that we have” see [them] having four or five wins as “winning will be a mindset here, on the schedule which would help hard work will be a mindset here build our strong freshman class.” [and] discipline will be a mindset Freker had commented that “Malhere,” said Exilhomme. He stated den had too many mistakes with that “[their] goal this season is to get turnovers and penalties” and “[it is] better every week, it is to give [their] hard to win when you stop yourself young players a lot of experience with penalties and give the ball back and knowledge to bring into the to the other team.” offseason.” In addition, “it is also The new era of Malden High to try and knock on Everett’s door School Football looks bright with when that game comes around” Coach Exilhomme and his staff at the because “[they] want to send a mes- helm. Everybody should be looking sage that Malden is no longer going forward to Malden and their future.


Local News

The Blue and Gold October 2021

An Update on the Junior and Senior Student Councils Hadjar Yousfi Lead Reporter


ith plans for junior class reelections to happen in October, and the search for the Class of 2024 and 2025 class advisors officially on, the Class of 2022 and 2023 have been busy at work themselves. As of right now, the junior class has one main goal, “trying to build up some money for the class,” as their advisor Michael Lightbody stated. Junior Varieties is an annual event at Malden High School, organized by the junior class. Lightbody mentioned they would be “trying to push for the best show [they] can.” Trying to get students involved, forming committees, and hosting auditions, are all in the works, as the council works towards hosting the biggest fundraiser of the year. The Class of 23 is also trying to lock in a prom site before the end of the year, as Lightbody said, they will have a target to meet their “funding needs,” to ensure that the “prices are as reasonable as possible,” for students when prom officially arrives. Isabella Ivy, Secretary of the junior class, expressed that she will “try and help out as much as [she] can with the fundraising,” so that they can work towards having at least one fundraiser a month. She also mentioned that they will try

and work alongside the student body to see “what else they want to do this year.” As for the Class of 2022, class advisor Daniel Jurkowski stated that they are “all about fundraising” for senior activities such as prom, pep rally, helping cover the yearbook fee, senior merch, and more. Sammi Nie, senior class treasurer, explained that they want students to be involved as much as possible because “[they’re] all distanced from each other a lot.” This creates a good opportunity to bring people together while also raising money. The prom venue for this year has already been chosen, and the date has been set. Unfortunately, the place “[they] originally wanted was booked,” said Nie, but they found another one in Boston. The seniors are working on fundraising as much as possible, aiming for at least one fundraiser a month, because the venue is “very expensive,” Jurkowski mentioned. They plan to raise enough money so that prom tickets are affordable for students. Fundraising aside, their ultimate goal is “to make sure everyone can try to have the best senior year possible.” Jurkowski feels that since it has been a long two years, their main goal is to make sure that their seniors enjoy themselves as much as possible, so that “everybody has a memorable final year at Malden High.”

The Class of 2022 officers and volunteers after Junior Varieties. Photo submitted by the Class of 2022 student council.

The Class of 2023 during the human pyramid at Pep Rally 2019. Photo from The Blue and Gold archives.

The Class of 2023 officers and volunteers at their most recent car wash. Photo submitted by the Class of 2023 student council.

The Class of 2022 at their Valentine’s Day Ice Cream Social. Photo submitted by the Class of 2022 student council.

Members of the Class of 2022 at Pep Rally 2019. Photo submitted by the Class of 2022 student council.

The Class of 2023 officers and volunteers with Mayor Gary Christenson at their most recent car wash. Photo submitted by the Class of 2023 student council.

The Blue and Gold October 2021 Continued from page 1. she explained how the “work of equity was embedded into that,” particularly looking at “the work of building and continuing to build culturally responsive teachers” and “looking at our practices and our policies, [...] making sure that all of our backgrounds are being represented, not just superficial.” In terms of the projects that Doherty has been working on since she assumed her role, she noted how there have been some that are more technical including an online enrollment system where families can apply to enroll their child to one of the schools in the district. She mentioned how instead of families having to come back and forth, “they will be able to sign in, see where their application is, what they are missing” in hopes of making the process more smoother. Doherty revealed how the original enrollment process “took a long time for [families] to register,” however with the use of Aspen, there is actually “a way that families can create a family portal and do all of their registration from their home.” On top of that, Doherty added “because we have so many rich and diverse languages,” it is important for the portal to translate into every language. It is significant for families who are “new to a country that may not have experience with American school systems.” Therefore, the ultimate goal of the new portal system is to ensure that it is “providing really clear information to our families.” She went on to say that it is “especially important right now for our Afghan families that are coming in” because they may speak a variety of “different dialects that [they] do not have translations for,” and so as

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15 families are coming in from different countries that might not be a part of the major seven languages that are used traditionally, “[they] want to make sure that they are represented in that work.” Doherty then went into detail about the Welcome Center, previously known as the Parent Information Center, and how she has been working on establishing the role of the center to “be more of supporting families instead of [the] transactional back and forth” where she hopes to carry out the goal of having high school equivalency for families of students who are over age when they come to Malden. Using the Welcome Center as an example, she explained how changing the name from the Parent Information Center to the Welcome Center first has to go through the School Committee and be agreed upon. Additionally, Doherty would like to change the enrollment policy because she wants to better understand “some of the components in there that seem to have an impact on our historically marginalized populations.” In order for that to happen, there needs to be a motion in order to bring that to the policy subcommittee, which then has to go to the policy subcommittee and then if that goes through the policy subcommittee, it will be brought to the school committee. And so “there are some times where there are things that require layers,” said Doherty. Doherty would like to see the community to truly “understand what equity means” because she wishes to “have a foundational definition and practice” that everyone feels comfortable with. Emilys Peña, the Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum, Assessment and Engagement, the focus for

her has been ultimately on “getting a good handle and a good sense of where students are academically, coming out of pandemic.” Similar to Noriega-Murphy, looking at data, whether that would be DIBELS scores (Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills) from students at the elementary levels or literacy data. She continued on saying that what they are “measuring right now is looking if students are either meeting or exceeding grade level standards,” more specifically analyzing where those percentages fall from in order to establish what are “the increments that we need to increase.” Peña mentioned how there are “a lot of multiple data points’’ and that she feels “data has been a huge part of what [they have] been doing.” Another focus area for Peña has also been on systems including professional development as “[the administrators] really wanted to understand what does that look like, what does the arc of learning look like from September [...] all the way through June.” She described that it was a way to organize it “not just at the district level, but at every school” in hopes of seeing where these “activities align with what we are hearing our needs in the community [...] in our schools, or aligning to the school’s plans for improvement.” Therefore, Peña conveyed that it has been a lot of “stopping and and listening to what everyone is sharing,” which she considers the “information so valuable when you are new to the district.” On top of that, both Peña and Noriega-Murphy are promoting classrooms to have central questions so that students are seeing essential questions that help to “ground

[students] learning into this bigger concept.” She further said that clear content objectives should be present and “aligned to the curriculum, the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks” because they want every student to have access to this “so that their time and every single class that they go to, feels meaningful.” In terms of curriculum, Peña explained that the newest one that was recently adopted is a K-5 math curriculum called Eureka. Peña explained how it was ensured that the team “deciding on what curriculums to pilot [...] would involve looking at sites that the Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education (DESE) puts out,” where curriculums are listed that have already “been vetted not only by the state, but by districts that have used it.” At the same time, Peña acknowledged “there are certain things that we need to really pay attention to early” in an effort to “get [them] on track to raising the bar,” and what “[they] expect teachers to provide to students and what we hope students will meet.” Like Noriega-Murphy, Peña is interested in incorporating student voice because “[they] are looking at almost every layer of having places where [they] can interact with students” to hear what they have to “say about critical things that [they are] thinking of moving forward.” With the new administration in the Malden Public Schools district, the administration hopes to implement more plans and programs in order to create a more inclusive, transparent community where community members, parents and students alike are able to benefit from them and be involved in the processes like these.

Malden Community Comes Together to Experience an Evening of Haitian Folklore Dancing and Spiritual Healing Krishany Marius Head of Local


he Jean Appolon Expression (JAE) Dance Company held a performance in front of the city hall on Saturday, October 2nd. They brought drums for people to dance to the rhythm and the beats brought the community together; and, most importantly, they brought a contagious and exciting amount of energy. There were dancers from the JAE dance company and they also invited people to join in on the fun. JAE is excited to share their unique process with the community. They are committed to creating hope and healing through Haitian Folkloric dance, “[They are] a dance company...” They are for “social justice, a community, elevation . . . [and] the future for the younger kids who are here.” All donations will go directly to support the earthquake victims in Haiti. It is important for the company to acknowledge what is going on in Haiti and the director, Jean

Appolon, does everything to celebrate his country Haiti, “Haiti is a country with a lot of history, to [Appolon] Haiti represents strength and power.” It is a country that has also inspired many other countries in the world as it was the first to liberate itself from slavery. The dance company’s main goal is to help any community heal through dance. Nadia Miladissa, a dancer for JAE, said that “Performing is such a liberating experience, and it’s something that you can share with others to be a part of that liberation.”. JAE brings in AfroCaribbean traditions with contemporary dance. Miladissa feels very powerful when dancing with the JAE company. The current dance they are doing is called “Traka” which means “trouble” or “trauma” in Haitian Creole, and her solo is very deeply tied with it because of a deep, spiritual

significance. Miladissa is grateful to dance anytime especially if it is to sacred rhythms. The company puts effort every Saturday into their performances for their dances and unique beats from their drummers. Jean S, a drummer for JAE, explained that “Drumming is a part of his [his] culture,” and that he “grew up listening to rhythms. [He] never knew [he] could play drums until [his] son was born,” Jean S. says he has been playing since his son Danny S. was three years old. Drumming is “exciting” to him because “it is a space where he can express the rhythms and the beats of every sound that he makes.” He loves when people “dance to the beats he makes. It’s like a celebration each Saturday that [they] play for a dance class.” For him “it’s a show, a celebration.” Drumming is a relaxing hobby for Jean S. and something that he enjoys doing every chance he gets because of how nice and

calming they sound. Patrick, another member that dances with JAE, said that “Dancing is something that is social; it even helps others to connect more and want to join in. Being an immigrant from Haiti, each time [he comes] to take this class, [he] feels like [he is] stepping into a Haitian bath,” It relates with Patrick because he used to be a professional dancer. “Dancing is like the spring bowl from which [he jumps] through to live [his] life,” Patrick stated. Dancing is what gives him so much passion and an honor to dance his heart out. The JAE company expresses who they are, especially through their dances and the creative beats the drummers come up with. It is not only for Haitian people but they provide open arms to those who want to join in. “It was [his] dream to elevate [his] Haitian dance and share it with the world. The company consists of people from different backgrounds . . .to really keep Haiti alive,” Appolon said.

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The Blue and Gold October 2021

The Key Club Volunteers at Alzheimer’s Walk Chaimaa Assli Head Copy Editor


lzheimer’s is a form of dementia that affects the memory, thinking and behavior of a person. Eventually, the symptoms grow so severe it starts to affect the daily life of the person living with it. On average, a person with Alzheimer’s can live from four to eight years. Currently, there is no cure for Alzheimer’s. Every year it affects about three million people in the US. On Sunday, September 26th, Key Club coordinated with the Alzheimer’s association so members of the club could attend. Vice president Sharon Pan found who to contact online and got in touch with the association. President of Key Club Maggie Yick thought this event would be good for high school students to learn more about Alzheimer’s and to see how it affects a lot of people. She said it is important for the younger generation to “support their battle because it’s tough.” Yick loved attending this event and thought it was “active and lively.” She liked that all the volunteers were cheering on the people who have loved ones battling the illness. Yick said “it [is] moral support and [she believes] everyone should show love and support in society, this world needs a lot more light than dark.” Yick believed it was very successful because about 70 Key Club volunteers showed up to the event. Everything went smoothly because all the volunteers were having fun and doing the job that was given to them. She thinks

that the volunteers should be able to have fun while working and she wants “members to feel comfortable and happy [with] no stress.” Yick has been attending this event for a while and hopes that Key Club will continue to volunteer there. Pan also thought that the event was pretty successful. She said that she would definitely attend again since this is an annual event Key Club goes to. In the future, Pan hopes that there would be more organization for the roles of the members and hopes to encourage more cooperation overall. Treasurer Allison Yu, thought that the walk represented a noble cause and it was good for “raising awareness and giving support on the effects of Alzheimer’s in our community.” To Yu the event was pleasant and she thought “it was empowering to see so many people participate and show their support.” Yu said that she is “looking forward to what events and memories are in store for Key Club this year.”

There was a great turnout rate for the event. So many people from all over and of all ages came to support this cause whether they had loved ones that were affected by Alzheimer’s or not. Attendees loved the event and were very impressed by it. Some said that they would definitely come again. Grace Sullivan, who came with her father to the walk, came to support her grandmother Joan Ram who suffers from Alzheimer’s. This is Sullivan’s fifth time attending with her family and said that it is a “really fun event.” Senior manager for the Greater Boston Locked-In Alzheimer’s Melissa Shirtcliss helps organize the events and recruit teams helping with fundraising as well. She has been with the organization for seven years but this is her eighth walk with them. Shirtcliss is “so appreciative of our supporters, our walkers.” They have reached about 75% of their $1.2 million goal and she is positive that they will reach their goal with all the

supporters attending. Another advocate for this cause is Tracy Lungalow whose father is currently living with Alzheimer’s. She was also a volunteer and her job was to greet and welcome everyone. She said that within minority communities there needs to be more advertising and more education on Alzheimer’s because it is “highly important.” Kimberly Marasca joined the Greater Boston walk and Alzheimer’s Committee in 2020 when it was virtual because of COVID-19 “so it was a little different.” What made Marasca want to volunteer was her mother in law who passed away due to Alzheimer’s and this was her family’s eleventh walk. She thought it was great that Key Club came to volunteer. Victoria Craun was also on the planning committee and a volunteer and she started participating in the walk ten years ago and she has been a part of the planning committee for the past three years. When Craun was in college, she joined a sorority that was connected to the Alzheimer’s association because at the time her grandfather was fighting Alzheimer’s. She thought that there was a great turnout this year and that it went “really well.” Key Club members thought that overall the event was fun and well organized. They plan on coming again next year. Yick thinks that events like these are good for members of Key Club because “high school is the time for you to learn and grow to discover what type of person you are.”

The Blue and Gold October 2021

Local News


New College and Career Counselors: Karina Martinez and Ralph Corbelle

Julie Huynh Editor-in-Chief


meriCorps is an organization that works to strengthen communities through service and volunteering. It was through one of their programs, the College Advising Corps, that Karina Martinez and Ralph Corbelle were hired to be College and Career Advisors here at Malden High. The program places near-peer college advisors who have just graduated from university into high schools with underserved populations to increase the number of low-income and first-generation college students who plan on entering higher education. For those not interested in college, they also help students find job training programs, scholarships, and alternative opportunities that will lead them toward success. Martinez heard about the College Advising Corps through a friend of hers that was already serving at a high school. The program’s mission “really resonated with [her] because of [her] own experience” as someone who came from a lowincome background with immigrant parents who did not go to college or speak English very well. In addition, Martinez grew up in the Bronx, New York, an area where school resources are not as accessible to youth as some other parts of the country. For her, “college was not a guarantee,” and this was something she “was made aware of… very early on.” For this

Submitted by Martinez.

Submitted by Martinez.

reason, Martinez dedicated herself to “making sure [she] got the future [she] deserved” by working hard in school and filling out the Common App, registering for the ACT, and completing FAFSA all on her own. “All students should have a chance at getting the future they not only want, but deserve.” Martinez was accepted into Boston University and graduated as a part of the Class of 2021. She was a Film and Television major with a concentration in TV studies, and a minor in Deaf Studies. During her undergraduate career, Martinez worked a number of different jobs and internships, including working at her school’s dining hall and answering phones at a call center. Her more relevant experience was with Boston University Admissions, where she was a Student Admissions Representative for BU’s Visitor Center. She would answer questions about the school and help with on-campus visits. In her senior year of college, she became the Boston Outreach Coordinator for BU’s Admissions Student Diversity Board. In this position, she “led and organized different multicultural events for prospective students” and “fostered connections with Boston Public Schools and local community-based organizations.” Spending time behind the scenes of college admissions was a “very rewarding experience” and what “ultimately led [her] to rediscover [her] passion for working with students and bridging the college access gap.” For Corbelle, he had heard of the opportunity from LinkedIn, and everyone he spoke to “recommended the program and encouraged [him] to apply.” He grew up in Revere, and by the time he reached high school he “had no clue what [he] wanted to do with [his] life.” Similarly to Martinez’s experience, Corbelle described Revere’s schools as being both underfunded and overcrowded. With more students than teachers and staff to support them, “individual support for students was rare.”

Being a first-generation college student and going through the experience of “figuring out what came after a high school diploma” largely on his own, inspired him to apply for the position and “make the process easier for the students at Malden High.” The position that Corbelle holds with Martinez is a resource “that [he wishes] was available to [him]” when he was in high school. Corbelle was a Posse Scholar at Bucknell University; he studied Education and English with a concentration in Race and Literature. Throughout his time at college, he worked three jobs as a writing consultant, residential advisor, and event manager. As a writing consultant, he worked with students 1-on-1 and in small groups to discuss ideas on how to strengthen their writing skills. His responsibilities as residential adviser included overseeing different halls of students and creating community programming for those halls. Working at the school so far has “been a bit of a whirlwind” for Martinez. However, she has “enjoyed meeting all of the students and learning about their hopes for the future.” Malden High has been “very welcoming” and she is “looking forward to the rest of the year.” Corbelle agreed that it has been great meeting students and “hearing about their unique experiences, questions, and interests.” Coming from school in Pennsylvania, it can be challenging starting a new job in a new city, but he is “grateful for the students” and those who have been “invested in planning for their futures.” His favorite part of the job is “helping students uncover their goals, passions, and priorities.” He believes that “every student deserves a chance to envision the future they want to build for themselves” and he has liked “supporting students as they figure out what paths they want to pursue.” Martinez said the same, that she “loves speaking with students and learning about [what] they are passionate about.” One senior said that they “re-

Submitted by Corbelle.

ally like the new counselors,” and remarked that since Martinez and Corbelle are “freshly graduated” and “have been through it all pretty recently… it is easier to relate to them and ask them about college and the process.” “I’ve had a lot of conversations with students that don’t feel like their interests contribute anything to their future and it’s so disheartening to hear. Excitement and passion are not things to take for granted. I hope more students feel their pursuits are worthwhile with every conversation they have at the college and career center.” Last but not least, Corbelle expressed that he was impressed by Malden High’s students in a number of ways: how they are “working part-time jobs, caring for their families and friends, investing in their communities, committing their time to various sports and clubs, and thinking about what they are going to do in the future. Doing all of this on top of school work — during an ongoing pandemic — is genuinely amazing.” Martinez and Corbelle are available five days a week in room B337. All anyone needs to do is stop by the room or make an appointment at 9th and 10th grade CCC Google Classroom: kaimiw7 11th and 12th grade CCC Google Classroom: b6ogxyd Instagram: @maldenhigh_cac

Submitted by Corbelle.



The Blue and Gold October 2021

Boys Soccer Team Starts off a new Season

Desiree Nong Lead Reporter


The Varsity Boys Soccer players gather for a team huddle. Photo taken by Desiree Nong.

A Malden player attempts to make a goal against the Haverhill team. Photo taken by Kaoutar Wakaf.

pening with a new season, the Malden High’s Boys Varsity Soccer team kicks off with a record of 1-2-2. Since officially coming back in person full time on account of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the soccer team’s ambitions are extremely heightened. Coach Jeremiah Smith, with great confidence, is assured that the varsity players are determined to make up for the time they lost due to the pandemic. Whether it is independently or the team as a whole, all the players wish to improve and excel in their skills where it is needed for them. On Thursday, September 17th, the Boys Soccer team had their fourth game of the season. It took place at Pine Banks and they played against Somerville. The final score ended with a tie. Although in the past their records were not the most impressive, Junior Bradley Toussaint has “full faith in his teammates.” Junior Kyle Lee’s goals for this year are for the team to “make it to States” and for him to “earn his starting position”. Even if they do not exceed or meet their expectations, what matters most is how hard the team is willing to work this season. To prepare for upcoming tournaments, every player has their own way to get themselves psyched up before a game. One way most of the team keeps themselves in shape is maintaining a healthy eating schedule. A solution is to create consis-

tent good eating habits before and after training. For starters, the players make sure to eat breakfast, and to try to eat a big proportional meal before a game or practice. In order to play better, the teammates all make a commitment to physically keeping themselves in good condition. Specifically for Lee, what works for him best is to eat a meal with a lot of carbs two to three hours before a game and make sure he stays “hydrated everyday.” Lee makes it clear that drinking lots of water is a must and is an important task to do, whether it is outside or during training or games. The answer to being a good player and to have a higher chance of stronger results, is the right mindset to have. Mental health is immensely underlooked, especially for students who play sports. When losing a game, it is hard to move forward and keep your drive to continue. It is easy for soccer players, or anybody in general, to lose their dedication. A method to keep players motivated is to “know their why.” What I mean by that is everything. Players need to remind themselves why they are doing this and why they are training hard every single day. Toussaint adds that his overall plan before a game or practice is to “not get too nervous” and that “staying positive” is key. If players were to see the brighter side of things, and be more optimistic, not only will they be successful but their mentality will be more open-minded.

The Blue and Gold October 2021


Girls Soccer Team Fights To Make states


Lulu Harding Editor-in-Chief of Web & Mobile Apps Nathan Dean Lead Reporter


ith a current record of 3-6, the girl’s varsity soccer team has continued to fight hard to qualify for the State championships. This year’s team is led by senior captains Olivia Donahue, Sara Dzaferagic, and Molly Sewell. Dzaferagic, a center-back, explains that working with Donahue and Sewell this year has run smoothly, especially since they were all previously friends on the team before becoming captains together. This has been helpful for the girls because “[they] feel comfortable saying what [they] think to each other or how [they] feel.” She also mentions how “obviously there were times when [they] disagreed with what [they] should do or how [they] should approach things, but that never harmed [their] relationship as friends or as captains.” They all understood that this just comes with being captains. Donahue, the girls’ starting goalie, shares this same love of being a captain this year and sees the value in being a role model for the team. She wants to be a “perfect example for [the team]” so that they are able to come together and perform well to hopefully qualify for States. Dzaferagic adds on to this, explaining that “[they] have some new girls on the team and some girls where it’s their first year playing varsity, so their playing style might be a bit different…[they’re] trying to

help them in the adjustment, but at the same time pushing them to be better.” As both a player and captain, Dzaferagic believes that she is doing well this season. “Changing [her] position and being a starting center back every game has been an adjustment,” but despite this change, she believes that she has adapted to this change well and “done a good job” with playing her position. As a captain, Dzaferagic considers herself to be a “vocal” and “very disciplined captain. [She has] high expectations, but it comes from the best place.” Head Varsity Coach Enrique “Rick” Caceda believes that the varsity team has been doing well this season overall. He commends that “Olivia [Donahue] has blossomed into one of the top goalkeepers in [their] league” this year. Donahue has been playing soccer since her freshman year, and with three years under her belt, she agrees that “this might be [her] best season by far,” explaining that “[she has been] performing very well lately.” So far, the results of the season “haven’t been exactly what [the girls] have been hoping for.” However, Donahue is optimistic and believes that “[they] are a very strong team this year and have lots of talent that hopefully will start to show as the season moves on.” Caceda is also optimistic and believes that “[the team is] in a good position to qualify for States.” While they might not have been winning every game, the girls have been working extremely hard and putting in a lot of time and effort to ensure their qualification this year.

However, regardless of the final score, Caceda brings up that his reason for coaching and larger goal for the season is to “more to get kids to love soccer than for the wins and the losses.” Being a coach for 20 years now, this has always remained Caceda’s main goal on the field. Additionally, he believes that much of the team’s success can be attributed to goalkeeping coach, Jessie Belfer, “Belfer is unbelievable!” Caceda also mentions that Belfer has played a huge part in the girls’ progression as players this past year, putting emphasis on their goalie Donahue. Overall, all of the captains seem to share a similar goal this year as Donahue: to “hopefully win a few games, but more importantly, to come together as a team and connect so [their] playing on the field is more thought out and smooth.” Win or lose, the most important thing for the girls is to stick together and do the best that they can as players, which is exactly what they intend to do.

Junior Tia Sljuka takes a shot on the net during the second half against a defender and the opposing team goalkeeper. Photo taken by Nathan Dean.

Sophomore Alyssa Mini skillfully dribbles through 2 opposing defenders for a chance at a goal. Photo taken by Nathan Dean.



The Blue and Gold October 2021

Get Your Pom-Poms Ready – Cheer Team Somersaults Into A New Season Liam O’Toole Lead Photographer


he Malden High School Cheer Team had a tremendous amount of energy coming into their debut night. Every cheer was worth watching and listening to. The crowd members were drawn in and gave back the energy that revved up the players to get back in the game and play hard. On September 16, 2021, Malden High School’s Football Team played their first game of the season. The cheerleaders projected their voices across the field and into the stands. During cheers or immediately after them, the players had a noticeable change in their effort during plays. Mackenzie Smith, the senior captain of the Malden High cheer team, gave her perspective on the start of their 2021 season. “[she] felt like the crowd was poppin’ and everyone was excited to be back,” Smith said, recalling the opening game. “Having all that support was awesome and despite the score; there was spirit.” Smith is in her fourth year of cheerleading and lately has been reminiscing about her previous seasons. “It feels bittersweet because [she’s] been cheering throughout high school.” Smith recalls. “It’s remarkable to have been here this long and the team is making [her] feel special.” As a senior captain of the cheer team, Smith has been calling most of the shots. “[She leads] the team through their cheer and make[s] a lot of decisions.”, says Smith. “In a way, [she’s] the backbone for all the girls.” Kimberlee Smith, a freshman at Malden High and a newcomer to the cheer team, gave her thoughts on her very first game cheering. “[She] was surprised at the amount of people in the crowd,” she stated after remembering the moment. “The game was fun and [she wishes] the outcome was better, but overall [it was] a good night.” Kimberlee is having a great time cheering so far. “Having something like cheer being one of [her] first high school experiences is great and when [she is] there [she] becomes part of a real team,” Kimberlee believes. “[She] thought the commitment was a lot at first, but it eventually fit into [her] schedule and [she] really enjoy[s] being there.” Of course with being a new member of the team comes with lots of practice and training. “So far [she has] been learning the cheers, which took [her]a while to get down pat in time for the first game, which [she] did,” recalls Kimberlee. “[They] just did the first game, got all of the schedules set, so now [they] have lots of practices and fundraising in our midst.” Both the Smiths are looking

forward to seeing what the future games hold. “[She] feel[s] the [football] team is working hard and now they have players back that they can win with,” said Mackenzie. “With the team working three times a week for better outcomes it is easy to have hope for awesome games throughout the season, there is definitely potential for improvement.” Kimberlee mentioned. Mackenzie enjoys cheering because of how it makes her environment feel. “[She is] part of a very spirited team and after the pandemic, doing sports and cheering on the athletes is an important way to get the crowd involved again.” Mackenzie adds. Kimberlee is making new relationships through cheer. “[She] enjoy[s] how close [she is] with the other girls on the team, it’s a good way to start high school and [she] enjoy[s her] environment.” she says.

The Blue and Gold October 2021



Girls Volleyball Takes Home a Win Against Chelsea Brandon Wong Managing Editor of Arts and Photography


ollowing a devastating loss in their previous game against Somerville, the Malden High School Girls Volleyball team bounced back to claim a victory over Chelsea with a final score of 3-0. Consistently maintaining at least an 8-point lead throughout each set. Head Volleyball Coach Daniel Jurkowski states that “[they] needed this. [They] lost to Somerville yesterday. It was a bad loss for [them]. [They] needed to bounce back and the girls did.” The first set began with a tight lead by Chelsea. After a series of rallies, Chelsea secured a one-point lead, leaving the 9th rally with a score of 4-5. This would quickly change as Malden began to dominate the court. By the 27th rally, Malden would secure a five-point lead with a score of 16-11. Despite Chelsea’s attempts to retaliate, by the 37th rally, they would only be able to secure another 4 points, leaving Malden with a 7-point lead. This trend would continue as Malden increased its lead. The first set would eventually go to Malden, with a final score of 25-16, setting a precedent for Malden’s lead in each set. With the momentum built from the last set, Malden continued to dominate the court. Securing a small lead by the 8th rally, with a score of 5-3, Chelsea maintained

it’s pressure on Malden, playing aggressively while Malden continued its lead. By the 14th rally, Malden had increased its lead by four points, leaving a score of 10-4. Slowly feeling the pressure, Chelsea made several uncharacteristic mistakes throughout the game. Chelsea’s Volleyball Coach Gabriel Morales remarked that a lot of “misserves” were made during the game, causing the team to struggle more in comparison to their previous game against Malden. This trend would continue to the 22nd rally as Malden increased its lead to 8 with a score of 15-7. This quickly changed as Chelsea began to increase the pressure on Malden, aiming to land in more spikes. Despite this change, Chelsea would be unable to close the lead, ending the 34th rally with a score of 20-14 and the set with a score of 25-17. Despite the uncharacteristic misserves made by Chelsea, Captain Riley Strano found that Chelsea was still “ hitting at [them], keeping them on [their] toes, and making [them] move.” Strano opened up the third rally with a block to Chelsea’s spike, earning the first point for Malden. Chelsea would try to fight back, securing a 1-point lead by the third rally, however, this would not last. Malden would continue to follow the trend created in the previous two sets, securing a 5-point lead by the 9th rally, leaving a score of 7-2. This did not come easily to Malden as Chelsea continued to play aggressively, aiming to land spikes in more difficult to receive areas of the court while blocking many of Malden’s own spikes. Despite the difficulty, Malden would only continue to increase the lead, leaving the 22nd rally with a score of 15-7. Despite the cheer for Chelsea’s Varsity Team from their Junior Varsity Team, Malden would eventually go on to take the final set, with a score of 25-13. Jurkowski remarked that “[they] played much better” in Thursday’s game. Previously, the performance of the team was a “bit up and down”, however Jurkowski remarked that “[they] played much like themselves.” Attributing this to the “team energy,” Jurkowski explained that “[They] played with energy today”, resulting in overall better performance. Despite the amazing performance of the team on Thursday’s match, Jurkowski found that they still needed to work on their inconsistent serving and communication on the court. Strano agreed, stating “there could always be more communication.” Overall, Strano found Thursday’s game to be “one of the best games, personally, that [they] played overall”, attributing this to the constancy in the player’s performance and “better communication” they had on the court.



The Blue and Gold October 2021

Field Hockey Team Keeps up the Pressure in New Season Zachary Nedell Lead Reporter


alden High’s Field Hockey team rushes into the fall season after a 3-1 year. Increasing in size by 13 new players and 4 captains, the field hockey team hopes to show what they are made of. Assistant Coach Tiffany Cane says that “[the team] has daily practices. [The coaches] constantly pressure and challenge [the players and] always expect better and better every day. [She] thinks the kids are starting to see that as [they] win more and more games, their confidence levels are growing, which is also helping with [their] skills in the long run”. On the fourth of October at Pine Banks Park, Malden showed the Lynn Vocational Tech high school what they were made of, taking home a 5-1 win. Malden’s offense kept the ball in the Vocational’s zone for the majority of the game. When the ball was pressed toward Malden, David Flores, Jayden Caplis and Sabrina Flores Palencia made sure to keep the defense tight. While the team is on the rebound after losing 11 graduated seniors and plenty of others due to the pandemic year, Cane “[thinks] this is a rebuilding year for [them] [and] [they are] doing better than [she] expected.” Junior Captain Peyton Lightbody, who has been playing since her freshman year, was the goalie for this game, saving many goals. She says, “[her] dad coached field hockey when [she] was little and [she] had a connection with the game [ever] since and that made [her] want to continue.” Lightbody has “improved on [her] blocking [and her] leading skills,” however she still needs to work on “[her] communication to help [the] team and improving [her] own game.” Junior Captain Henry Zhao, who plays center forward, has been playing since his freshman year and “[wants] to continue field hockey so [they] can win some more and hang out together.” Zhao has been improving by “being a little bit more confident working with [his] team [and] being more communicative while running faster,” but needs to work on “opening [his] choices [and] actually looking around for [his] team.” Even with the victory he believes “[he] could do better. [He] felt the team could play a lot better than [they] were,but there is so much potential for [them] and it just keeps growing.” Cane mused that “[Zhao] is constantly doing things that build the spirit up like buying them all kazoos. He’s a free spirit and he shows he loves the game and his smile is

contagious. [Zhao] and the rest are doing a really great job to keep that spirit up.” Junior Defender Simon Pham remarked about how he needs to be much “more team reliant selfless.” He agreed with his teammate Flores, middle defender, that winning was their favorite part of the sport. “[It’s] when [they] know [they] can do better, but [they’re] not living up to [their] potential,” he remarked on the topic. With Tiffany Cane and Samantha Souza bringing the Field Hockey team to new heights, and Malden’s captains and players rising to the challenge, they can expect a powerful season with new plays, strategies, and maybe even some more kazoos.

The field hockey team raising their sticks in unity. Photo taken by Lily Nguyen.


The Blue and Gold October 2021


The Captains’ Inside Scoop: The epic highs and lows of high school football Karen Rivera Managing Editor


alden High School’s Golden Tornadoes football team has charged into the fall season with new head coach, Witche Exilhomme, and the addition of three brand new athletes onto the team. Jordan Rodriguez, Gavin West, and Kyle Paulding have been named the Varsity captains for the 2021 season. All three athletes are new students at Malden High School, making their varsity debut onto the field as seniors. They all described their transition into the high school and city as “welcoming” and as if “[they] had lived here forever.” Paulding adds that being named captain as a first-year student

at Malden High School “meant a lot” to him and he hopes to “change this team around” and “win.” Rodriguez also mentioned that the Malden High School athletic program has allowed him to “have more of a connection with [his] coaches,” whereas in his previous school, Malden Catholic, “[he] felt like [he] didn’t get that chance.” The team currently stands fifth in the GBL with a record of 1-4. However, this does not change the expectations the boys have for their team, as West states that “if [they] can just do [their] assignments and just keep working hard every day, then every snap, [they] get better, every play, [they] get better, every practice, [they] get better. If [they] can just do that, then [they’ll] be an

Senior Captain Gavin West. Photo submitted by West.

unstoppable football team.” A snap in football is an important part of the game, it is the start of an offensive play. The snap involves two players—the quarterback and the center. When defeat comes, the team faces a lot of challenges, such as pushback from the students. This does not faze Paulding though, as he chooses to “forget about them, and [chooses] to go on by not even thinking about it and being better than last time.” Despite the losses, the team keeps their heads held high, as West believes that “[they] just need to encourage [their] teammates to make plays. If they mess up, [they] tell them to forget about it, [do the] next play and then just keep moving forward from there. Then [they’ll] easily get a win.” All three captains agree that the best way to achieve their goals this season is to “push the team” and “play hard” but the boys also strive for connections on and off the field. Rodriguez wants his teammates to have “family-like bonds and to be a brotherhood inside and out[side] of football.” Rodriguez wants to build these bonds with the team because he “wants those players who are going to put their bodies on the line to play against the other team and help [him] because [he] knows [he is] gonna put [his] body on the line. [He] expects [his] players to do the same for [him].” As the season progresses, with only 3 games left for the team,

Paulding hopes to meet their goals and become better by “working hard at practice, putting in extra time outside of practice and getting [his] teammates in the right headspace.” In the midst of the setbacks the team has faced, the Golden Tornadoes are pushing forward, as West says they must keep “moving on and making sure it’s a good play the next [time] and then [they] can just go from there.” Although Malden has not pulled out many wins, the team continues to “work hard and play hard” and is looking forward to the bigger events such as the Thanksgiving game, and senior night against longtime rival the Everett Crimson Tide.

Senior Captain Jordan Rodriguez standing for the Pledge of Allegiance moments before kickoff. Photo taken by Brandon Wong.

The Golden Tornadoes Secure Their First Win of Revenge Season Gianna Lally Reporter


he Malden High School Golden Tornadoes played the Somerville Highlanders at Macdonald Stadium for their third game of the season. The Tornadoes were facing an 0-2 record for a tough start to their season. Despite their recent losses, the Tornadoes redeemed themselves and were able to win the game 14-12 for their first win of the season. Both the Tornadoes and Highlanders were facing a winless record for the season, which meant it was a great opportunity to turn things around and build more momentum for the remaining season. Coach Witche Exilhomme of the Golden Tornadoes stated that “[the team was] fortunate to get some key players back. A lot of [the players] got hurt but [the team] is now healthy and looking to keep it that way the rest of the season. The confidence is definitely getting higher than it was.”

After the first quarter, the score was tied 0 -0. The Tornadoes received some penalties but were still going strong. In the second quarter, the Tornadoes scored on a touchdown pass from Senior Captain and Quarterback, Jordan Rodriguez, to Senior Samuel Solorzano. Senior Placekicker, Ronald Juarez, added the extra point for Malden which made the score 7 - 0. In the third quarter, The Highlanders fumbled the ball. Solorzano recovered the fumble and ran it 40 yards for his second touchdown of the game. Juarez again kicked the extra point for the Tornadoes. With only 7 minutes left in the quarter, Somerville was able to get their first touchdown with a complete pass from player #17 to #11. Malden led 14 - 6. In the fourth quarter, Somerville scored their second touchdown of the game by player #4 with only 40 seconds remaining, but it was not enough to beat the Tornadoes. Malden held on to win 14 - 12.

This was a huge victory for the Tornadoes and they were thrilled to finally feel that energy again. Exilhomme stated that “it felt good. It felt really good. It was very exciting for [the team] because now it’s time [they] believe in [themselves], knowing that it can be done.”

Exilhomme also mentioned that “[the team] is trying to finish strong. It’s for [them] to believe in the system that [they] are trying to implement [and] watch it work in [their] favor. [The team] is determined to finish the season undefeated.”

Senior Justin Desimone tackling an opponent. Photo taken by Brandon Wong.



The Blue and Gold October 2021

The Golden Tornados Whirl into the New Football Season

Daniel O’Toole Lead Reporter


n September 16th, 2021, Malden High School kicked off its 2021 Football Season against Haverhill’s Whittier Tech. This would mark Malden’s first football game in front of a full home crowd since before Thanksgiving of 2019. With a new head coach in Witche Exilhomme and a new season, Malden was set to face Whittier. The opening kickoff by Whittier went out of bounds towards their sideline which caused a penalty and Malden got the ball on their 40-yard line. After a back-to-back run play and a pass on third down, Senior Samuel Solorzano punted the ball a good 50 yards down the field to start Whittier’s first offensive drive around their 10-yard line. Shortly after a sack by Senior Justin Desimone, Whittier was forced to punt in their own endzone having Malden start their drive with great field position on Whittier’s 41-yard line. With Malden’s drive looking bleak, Senior Jordan Rodriguez scrambled to convert a 3rd and 8 into a first down. Nearing the end of the first, Rodgriguez’s pass was deflected into the air and intercepted by Whittier to end the first quarter with a score of 0-0. Whittier opened up the second quarter with a 16 yard

run to their running back which would help them push the ball all the way down the field and score the game’s first points with a short passing touchdown. The two-point try would end up successful making the score 0-8. On Malden’s next drive they would struggle with untimely penalties including holdings by the offensive line and an ineligible man downfield call which forced them to punt the ball to Whittier’s 27-yard line. The Malden defense was getting attacked over the middle and looked to get a stop on third down but a scramble of 12 yards by their QB got them a first down. A few plays later, Malden allowed a 25yard run which led to another Whittier touchdown, although this time, the two-point try was unsuccessful making the score 0-14. Malden needed a quick threeminute drive before the end of the first half. Their drive was quite fast with the first play being a pass that was picked off by Whittier, but the Golden Tornadoes responded immediately with an interception of their own. The possession now started with 2:42 left on the clock deep in Malden’s territory, but they were moving the ball with precise passes such as the screen pass caught by senior Oswaldo Rodriguez for 20 yards and power runs including one

by Quarterback Jordan Rodriguez on 3rd down for a gain of eight yards. Shortly following the run for a first down, Rodriguez carried the ball again but what followed was a recurring theme for Malden across the whole game, injuries. Around five of Malden’s players were injured in the game with Rodriguez’s looking like a rib injury. Luckily the team still had their quarterback from last year who is now a Senior, Shawn Bartholomew, so they still had someone with experience under center. The first few plays with Bartholomew were running plays until he hit Senior Lyden Lewis for 15 yards with 0:46 left on the clock. Unfortunately, Malden’s efforts went without a reward with the Whittier defense stopping them dead in the tracks and bringing an end to the first half with a score of 0-14. Being down two possessions going into the second half of any football game is difficult, but not impossible. After receiving the third quarter kickoff, Whittier continued their attack on the Malden defense with a screen pass that was good for 50 yards. However, the momentum created by this play was put to poor use after Malden forced them to punt to get the ball at their 23-yard line. With the opportunity to only

have a one possession deficit, Malden’s offense needed to score immediately to still have a chance in the game. The goal looked to be made true with a deep ball to Lewis down the sideline, but the pass was ruled incomplete and the drive ended in a punt. Hope was bleak, especially after the falter of the previous drive, and those suspensions were made true after Whittier got down the field and scored another touchdown with the two-point attempt failing to make the game 0-20. More improbable comebacks have happened, but now Malden needed a miracle to even have a shot in winning this game. The plays that the next few minutes fostered went against everything Malden needed. Quarterback Shawn Bartholomew threw an interception with Whittier getting the ball at Malden’s 42-yard line. The next play was a 42-yard rushing touchdown by their running back and a successful two-point conversion to now make the game 0-28 going into the fourth quarter. The fourth quarter was filled with a plentiful amount of runs by Whittier to chew the clock and an aggressive approach by Malden to try and get points on the board before time expired. This led to another Whittier interception and looked to be a shutout in Malden’s season opener, but the Malden defense never quit. They bent but didn’t break to stop Whittier on fourth down. With 6:27 left on the clock, Coach Exilhomme’s offense took the field one last time to grab points. Malden’s offense was moving the ball downfield with a balanced mix of runs matched by the play action pass. With 1:27 left in the game, Coach Exilhomme’s team scored his first touchdown as head coach with the addition of the extra point sailing through the uprights and ending the shutout. Whittier would kneel the clock out to end Malden’s season opener with a final score of 7-28.

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