MHS Crier | 5.15.19 | Issue 11

Page 1

[CRIER Munster High School


Indiana Lawmakers set aside $14.8 billion for education. None of it went to teachers. Issue 11 Volume 53 May. 15, 2019

8808 Columbia Ave. Munster, IN 46321


Addressing Indiana’s new education budget proposal

story by

[Mimi Brody] Editor-in-Chief


wo weeks before Teacher Appreciation week, the Indiana Congress drafted their new budget which funneled what House Speaker Brian Bosma referred to as a “historic” $14.8 billion into education. Despite this increase, none of the additional money will go towards compensating teachers. “Our neighboring states pay more than what Indiana does,” Mr. Joshua Herold, social studies teacher, said. “Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio— all of them.” Mr. Herold has dutifully watched the bill, checking news outlets and the Indiana State Teacher’s Association website every couple of days since January, when

[Inside look]

pg. 4

Crier staffers review local restaurants in Taste of Munster [photo by Lana Salahieh]

early drafting began. His wife also a teacher, a raise in base pay would drastically affect their livelihood, making their American dream a little easier to grasp. The budget put aside $14.8 billion for education, but only a negligible amount went towards teacher compensation in the form of Teacher Appreciation Grants. The legislation, instead, puts the responsibility of raising wages on the shoulders of school boards around the state. Even with the increase in funding, school boards may not be capable of this. “It (the new budget) is an education budget but it’s inadequate,” Sen. Frank Mrvan, Democrat and Representative of 1st District, said. “It doesn’t do enough and it doesn’t provide our public schools with the funding that they need. Our schools need real sup-

pg. 5

Profile on nationally ranked tennis players, Shalini and Sanjana Tallamraju

port and with the 2019 budget, some schools will actually see a decrease—that’s not sufficient and that’s not what Senate Democrats fought for.” The question of teacher pay was deemed a priority by both Republican and Democratic legislators in this session of Congress, however, measures that would guarantee raises in teacher’s base salaries were voted down. These proposals were drafted by Democrats, who only control 10 out of 50 seats in the Indiana Senate. Mr. Herold attributes the inability to raise wages on the Republican super-majority who are resistant to raising taxes. This sentiment was echoed by Rep. Mrvan, one of the ten Democrats in the Senate.

[Read more on pg 2]

[Upcoming] Academic Awards tomorrow in Auditorium 7 p.m.

Finals next week: Wednesday: 1& 6 Thursday: 3, 4 & 7 Friday: 2, 5 & 8

2 [NEWS]

Munster High School Crier

May 15, 2019

Sidenote Breaking news AP Lit

Students in the AP Literature and Composition class are currently in the process of writing scripts, filming and editing for their final project of the school year. The juniors have been assigned to create an original 20-25 minute film, which will be an assessment for their recent curriculum on dramatizations. The students will have the opportunity to be recognized for their work on May 20, when an Oscar Awards ceremony will take place. According to Mrs. Kelly Barnes, English teacher, the after school event will consist of twenty awards, a performance by Free Ice Cream and formal attire. Despite the large amount of effort that comes with the project, Mrs. Barnes said that she believes many of the students look forward to being able to utilize their creative talents. “I think that many students are excited just to be able to do something creative and original— to take what they’ve learned and apply it,” Mrs. Barnes said. “I think students don’t get enough opportunities to do that sort of a thing—where they get to actually create something new and fresh.”

[photo by Alexis Lindenmayer]

PUTTING IN THE HOURS Martin Barnard and Jack Stork, juniors, edit their AP Lit Video. Doing the project over the span of several weeks while working around everyone’s timeline was somewhat of a wake up call of what life will be like after high school,” Martin said.


On Wednesday, April 24, early in the morning, the MHS choir got on a bus and drove twelve hours to New York City to perform at Carnegie Hall. The choir received an invitation from Eric Whitacre, a professional composer, to perform at Carnegie hall. In New York, the group was able to practice with Whitacre inside of their hotel to prepare for their performance on April 28. “It’s the one of the most acoustically superior venues in the word,” Ben Hand, junior, said. “It’s a very intricate place.” According to Mr. Andrew Robinson, choir teacher, the theater is still being modified in order to obtain the best acoustics possible, and a better experience for both the performers and the audience. The group was also able to tour the city and see multiple landmarks including Times Square.

Corrections In issue 10 of Crier, Clara Terry’s, junior, favorite song in “Hairspray” musical was incorrectly identified, it should be “You Can’t Stop the Beat.” On page four “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” and “The Hunger Games” was misspelled. On page six in ‘The Moon,’ the story was cutoff, it should read “The mission did not accomplish its goal.” On page eight in the caption on ‘for the crown’ has misspelled Maddy Foreit, senior, also Melanie Powers and Elizabeth Fonseca should have photo bys ‘for the crown.’ Also on page eight Addy Andello’s quote should say “For sure Juice WRLD, Kanye West, and A$AP Rocky.” On page eight, we incorrectly said Prom King and Queen would be crowned on Friday at the dance instead of Saturday at the dance. Crier regrets these errors.

In the spotlight Former Publications staff members then and now

Nicole Hong

With yearbook distribution tomorrow, Publications alumni talk about life after high school story by

[Alexis Lindenmayer] Page Editor

Eleven years ago, Nicole Hong, class of ‘08, was finishing her run as Crier Managing Editor. Today, she and her team just won a Pulitzer Prize. She currently works at the Wall Street Journal as Law Enforcement reporter. “(Winning the Pulitzer Prize) was a mixture of relief, and just euphoria and a general sense that this was going to be an incredibly overwhelming thing,” Nicole said. “It was very difficult to process— and I’m actually still processing it—because I think once you win something like that, people sort of treat you differently and people have higher expectations of you.” Nicole and her team won for “Trump Hush Money,” a series about uncovered payments that President Donald Trump directed as a 2016 presidential candidate. “My forté was talking to lawyers and to people in law enforcement to help piece together this investigation, and ultimately figure out how was Trump involved in these hush payments,” Nicole said. “The reason that was important is because we were essentially implicating the president in federal crimes.” Nicole still dedicates a lot of her success to Mrs. Nancy Hastings, former Publications adviser. “We did some pretty tough stories, even back then. (They) weren’t necessarily the most popular with people in the school or people in the community, and (Mrs. Hastings) taught me the importance of independent journalism,” Nicole said. “She taught us so many important lessons about accountability and not being afraid of authority and staying independent. I think that is a lesson I’ve carried with me through my career.” Along with Nicole, many other pub-

lications alumni have gone on to do impactful things after high school. Mia Torres, class of ‘14, graduated from Indiana University, got an internship at the Washington Post, and after years of hard work, is now working there full time. “When I got the first phone call about my internship interview, I screamed, I think I fell on the floor actually because I was so overwhelmed,” Mia said. “The process for getting a full time job here, though, was a lot more drawn out. When it finally happened, I just felt this crazy sense of relief because I had a full time job. Also, disbelief, because this is what I wanted for so long.” Laurel Demkovich, class of ‘15, just graduated from Indiana University and Elena Piech, class of ‘15 is graduating from Ithaca University at the end of May. Elena received the Parks Scholarship, a full ride scholarship to Ithaca. She credits a lot of her success to high school Publications. “I think being in high school publications has taught me the importance of following deadlines because that’s something that you really have to adhere to while involved in publication.” Elena said. “It’s not just something where if you don’t do your work, you fail. If you don’t do your work, the entire paper, or the entire yearbook doesn’t get published. Not only are you letting down yourself, but you’re letting down everybody on your team.” Laurel was named Indiana College Journalist of the year for 2018. “It was definitely unexpected, but I’m really honored to receive that since there’s amazing journalism that happens across the state, especially at the collegiate level. It’s really cool to see myself recognized in that way,” Laurel said. “The biggest thing that I’ve gained, since coming in to college, is just confidence in my ability, my own


Crier Managing Editor


Wall Street Journal Law Enforcement reporter

Mia Torres


Paragon Editor in Chief

2019: Washington Post Designer

Laurel Demkovich


Paragon Editor in Chief

2019: Washington Post Intern

Elena Piech


Paragon Associate Editor


Ithaca College graduate

Jordan Szymanski 2017

Crier Editor in Chief


Ithaca College student [photos by Paragon]

work and the skills that I do have.” Jordan Szymanski, class of ‘17, just finished her first speculative screenplay script. She gives advice for students looking for a career in writing. “My only advice is to use the people around you,” Jordan said. “Having fellow creators that you’re friends with and you support, and respect are the connections that matter most.”

Too little pay [Continued from front]

Despite her enthusiasm for teach“Though there was bipartisan ing, when asked if she would stay and agreement that raising teacher pay work in Indiana upon graduation, was a priority this session, there was Maggie exclaimed “No, I will not stay not an agreed upon solution on how to here. Teachers get paid nothing.” do that,” Rep. Mrvan said. Seeking higher pay and better beneMaggie Curtin, senior, is looking fits, Maggie says she has started lookforward to attending Purdue Univer- ing at working in states like Michigan sity in the fall, where Midwest money or Pennsylvania. she will be working Average yearly teacher pay in Indiana’s dismal teacher towards a degree in states around Indiana salaries have led to a seElementary Educavere teacher shortage in tion. The daughter of the state. two teachers, Maggie “If you talk to a kid pay$62,200 says working in eduing $30 thousand a year cation was the natufor an education, how $50,554 ral choice. can they justify going into “My mom always teaching?” Mr. Herold comes home with $57,000 said. “People just want stories and gifts that to attain that American her kids give her and dream—they want to buy a I have always been house, a car and be able to the kid in the fami$61,602 raise a family.” ly that loves to hear $52,339 Rep. Mrvan does not bethem, and all of my lieve anything will be done [source: Business Insider] aunts and uncles are to raise teacher wages teachers, so it was very natural,” Mag- anytime soon and expects the shortgie said. “I can’t imagine doing any- age to persist. thing else.” “Though there is plenty of mon-

ey that could’ve been used to fund raising teacher salaries, there was no guaranteed money for this issue in the Republican budget,” Rep. Mrvan said. “There definitely was not enough done to solve the teacher shortage problem. With the funding that can be used to possibly raise teacher pay, there isn’t enough money to go around so I don’t think we will see this issue improved by Funding figures Per-pupil funding in much, if at all” each state Many surround- Illinois ing states have seen $13,755 per student teachers partici- Michigan $11,482 per student pate in walk-outs or Ohio strikes. Mr. Herold is $11,637 per student hopeful that a com- Indiana $9,687 per student promise can be made Kentucky without such drastic $9,630 per student [source: Business Insider] action. “The last thing any teacher wants to do is have it come to that point,” Mr. Herold said. “The only people you are hurting by striking is kids, parents and the school board. I want to be a good employee—but I want to be compensated too. I’m not asking for the moon— just a fair compensation.”


Munster High School Crier

May 15, 2019


Make it right

story by

[Lilia Brunetti] Web Editor

[cartoon by Mercedez Williams]

NOT ENOUGH Teachers do various other tasks other than just teaching in their day to day worklife. Coaching, grading and helping out students emotionally are just some of the many things that teachers do. Because of this, they should be paid more money.


‘Mo money, ‘mo teachers Teachers are the ones held responsible for educating, managing and shaping the future generation. However, the starting salary for a teacher in Indiana is $35,000, $6,000 less than the national average salary of $41,000. It’s disheartening that such a vital profession is getting paid so little and that there is no proof of fixing it. On Thursday, April 25, Indiana’s 2-year $34 billion budget plan was officially passed. Education spending emerged as a top priority as more than $539 million is being put into K-12 schools. The money is going toward aspects such as teacher bonuses, funding of virtual schools, vouchers and school safety. This is all great, as education deserves some improvement, however; none of this money is actually contributing to teacher salary. We have all been in classes where teachers joke and laugh about how little they make and how few raises they receive. We chuckle along because it is common knowledge that teachers are underpaid, but what happens when it stops being funny? Young people are told all the time not to become a teacher because the pay is mediocre for what the job entails. If teachers don’t start getting the benefits and money they deserve, we are going to find ourselves living in a world where the education profession is sparser than it already is. This does not help the fact that Indiana has filed a need for teachers in countless areas. According to the Indianapolis Business Journal, Indiana has filed for teachers in 14 different subject areas. Indiana’s need for teachers has shifted from only Special Education to many of the core subjects in schools, including Math, Science and Language Arts. The largest contributer to the teacher shortage is that low salaries discourage people from entering the profession. The pay that


Crier, Munster High School’s official student newspaper, may be reached via mail at 8808 Columbia Ave, Munster, IN 46321; via phone at 219-836-3200, ext. 3443; or via fax at 219-836-3202. Crier is published through the Honors Newspaper Advanced Writing and Editing classes and extra-curricular involvement. •The newspaper serves as a public forum and two-way communication for the school and community. •Crier is a source of information, entertainment, advertising and opinion for the student body, faculty, administration and community •Published material will stress objective reporting except on the editorial page where opinion writing will be featured. All published material will stress accuracy, integrity, honesty, responsibility, objectivity, fairness and independence. Corrections, when necessary, will be published on page 2. Opinions expressed in the newspaper do not necessarily reflect those of the School Town of Munster, faculty or administration. Letters to the editor and reader suggestions are welcomed, but should be limited to 250 words. All letters must be signed and should be either emailed to the editor (, given directly to any staff member or delivered to the Publications room, N155, one week prior to publication. Letters must not contain personal attacks against an individual. Editors reserve the right to edit for length, clarity, and grammatical errors. Crier will accept letters from

teachers receive in Indiana is not competitive, and therefore does not help bring in more teachers. When will Indiana fix this? This has also increased the amount of teachers using an emergency permit, this is issued when a district has a desperate need for teachers in their schools, and allows them to have looser hiring requirements. In Indiana alone, during the 20172018 school year, the state granted 186 emergency permits for math education and 153 in language arts education. While an emergency permit isn’t necessarily bad, the high amount of them issued shows that Indiana has a desperate need for teachers, an issue that could possibly be fixed through paying teachers more. It all comes down to the fact that teachers are the ones educating the students. The idea that this 2-year budget is the is an “education” budget is insulting considering how it fails to address Indiana’s greatest educational problem. The first priority should be to pay the people who do the job, then look at the other factors. For such an integral part of our society, the way teachers are paid is unjust and lawmakers should pass a bill to make sure that teachers can take care of their families and make a legitimate income.

[Our take] For how much work they do everyday, teachers deserve higher salaries

anyone, provided that the content pertains to school or school issues. Feedback may also be submitted on Twitter @munstermedia. Mailed subscriptions cost $25 per year. Crier’s website is http:// Digital issues can be found on Crier is published 12 times a school year.

[Our Staff] Editor-in-Chief Mimi Brody Copy Editor Alyssa Bass Design Editor Megan Szymanski Graphics Editor Robert Young Web Editor Lilia Brunetti

There is no doubt technology has revolutionized our worldwide perspective, particularly our humanitarian awareness. However, not everyone will ultimately follow media outlets that pump out worldwide news, nor come across the latest stories about tragedies plaguing populations in their feed. While we in America dedicate bandwidth to various issues many that can be argued to be unnecessarily blown out of proportion, we lack the awareness of devastating issues in areas that need help the most. As a country known for the embodiment of ideals such as the right to life and the pursuit of happiness — as a country who historically has entered wars on a humanitarian and moral basis, why such silence and oblivion? Thousands of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar have been murdered in concentration camps because of ethnic cleansing. In fact, the United Nations has made it aware that this group is among one of the most persecuted worldwide today. Lands burned and taken away, forceful arson and rape dominate their lives. Similarly, nearby in China, Muslim populations are also targeted through concentration camps. They must face the horrific Chinese organ harvesting processes, some of which occur while an individual is still living. Cyclone Idai— which devastated the already broken nation of Mozambique, claimed the lives of over one thousand, wrecked damage of over 1.5 billion dollars and exacerbated the flooding crisis— affected at least 3 million people. These are only a few examples of practically disregarded crisis. How bad do things have to get before the world realizes that there are true humanitarian issues? Are peoples’ lives valued less because they live in underdeveloped countries? Or is it that their countries do not provide any viable economic interests to pursue, and therefore intervening would not reap benefits? Considering that the Western world, predominantly first-world nations, certainly possess the resources to aid, our decision to spread awareness to these causes could certainly catalyze global efforts. A crisis is a crisis despite where it occurs. Whether it be in the most populated country in the world, or an underdeveloped nation across the ocean.

Social Media Manager Adam Klaich Alt-Copy Manager Mercedez Williams Page Editors: Atarah Israel, Alexis Lindenmayer, Ava Lukacsek, Finn Manion, Zoe O’Shaughnessy, Nadia Perdue Business Manager Kammy Moore Head Photographer Elizabeth Fonseca Chief Photographer Melanie Powers Chief Social Media Photographer Lauren Kozy Photographers: Ava Lukacsek, Charlie Hofferth, Lana Salahieh, Lauren Morris Adviser Ms. Sarah-Anne Lanman


Munster High School Crier

May 15, 2019

A taste of Munster story by

[Mercedez Williams and Finn Manion] Alt-copy Manager and Page Editor

Crier reviews different local restaurants with the opening of the Taste of Chicago in the summer

Munster Gyro’s

Bomber’s 435 Ridge Rd


A family run restaurant and a Munster classic, Munster Gyros has captured the hearts, and stomachs, of many in the Region. The food was made in little to no time and the quality, to put it simply, was amazing. I am not the biggest fan of hot dogs but Munster Gyros made me like them (temporarily), but the main attraction, was the Gyro. The sauce was amazing and the meat was cooked perfectly, it was affordable with the amount of food you get as well, I would definitely recommend it.

The military-themed restaurant sits you in a “mess hall” like setting and you already feel like you’re a soldier eating a meal. With rib tips, and two sides (we chose the fries and Mac & Cheese) for only $13 ,it was a great deal. For being ready in so little time, the quality of the food is impeccable. The meat was very tasty, but what all made it came together was the sweet sauce put onto it. The restaurant’s biggest strengths are the atmosphere and value.

If you have grown up in this town, many can trace back to memories of going to Froyo as a child. With many flavors to choose from, and toppings as well, it is a delight for the whole family. The cake batter ice cream did not rise to my expectations, but, well it’s ice cream- you cannot go THAT wrong. The sense of nostalgia will make you feel like a kid again and on top of that, the quality of the ice cream is great, as well as the assortment of toppings.

Munster Donut

Commander’s 745 Ridge Rd.


Getting food was simple and easy which is helpful for people in a rush. I ordered a chocolate iced donut, and it was astonishing. The dough of the donut was soft and well made, and the frosting had a very sweet and chocolate-y taste. The brown and yellow color scheme of the restaurant reminded me of the donut on the sign of the building. I used to always get Dunkin’ due to it seeming faster, but I will be getting Munster Donut from now on, because I enjoy it much more than Dunkin’.

Commander’s lemon rice soup was amazing. The taste and aftertaste had a clear lemon flavor but not one that is too sour. The amount of soup was quite a steal for the price ($3), and the soup came with crackers and bread. Sitting in the restaurant makes you feel welcomed because everyone seemed like nice people. Lemon rice soup was not something I had very much of in the past. I’ve had it at a few places before, but this is the most memorable taste. I will most likely dine here again in the future.

The Schoop’s Mickey, its signature burger itself was delicious and was excellently made. The edges of the burger were cooked too much and made it crispy in those areas. The service in the restaurant was very fast, so the food did not take long. The restaurant was very old fashioned 1950s style. Every booth has a wall jukebox that connects to the main speaker of the restaurant, it costs 25 cents and plays songs such as “What A Wonderful World” by Louis Armstrong or “Ring Of Fire” by Johnny Cash.

8307 Calumet Ave.

8314 Calumet Ave.

Congrats to all the Munster Mustangs on a successful school year from

Dixon’s Florist (219) 836-1668 919 Ridge Road, Unit B-C Munster, Indiana 46321

8207 Calumet Ave

[photos by Lauren Morris]

215 Ridge Road

LYNWOOD BOWL 2581 Glenwood Lansing Rd. Lynwood, IL 60411

(708) 895-6633

Bring in Ad Get One Free Game

Munster High School Crier

Taking a look back story by

[Adam Klaich] Social Media Manager

From Aug. 13 to May 24, students reflect on year


[photo by Elizabeth Fonseca]

A NEW ERA Coach Grunewald leads a football practice.


This year, the volleyball team made it past Sectionals and to the first round of Regionals. To get to Regionals, the team beat Highland, Morton, and Crown Point at Crown Point. “I think we were more efficient in terms of ball control and our team was really cohesive,” Laila Wallace, junior, said. Wallace also attributes the success to the leadership shown by the seniors and respect for teammates. Other than the season being considered successful, Wallace also considers the season as a good one to build off of and learn.

[photo by Adam Klaich]

FRESH PAINT The hallways, tile and lockers were redone for the second half of the semester.


August Last year, long time football Coach Leroy Marsh announced he would be stepping down as head coach. This year, the team played with a new coach: Coach Jason Gruneald. Not many changes were made this season, but the offense was changed to fit the teams player in a more efficient way. “He didn’t change that much,” Javaughn Richards, senior, said. “He followed a lot of what Coach Marsh did out of tradition, but he made practices more team centered.” Javaughn believes that these changes benefited the team and improved their chemistry.

[INFOCUS] 5 May 15, 2019


In January, a picture of an egg posted by an account named “world_record_egg” became the most liked photo on Instagram on Jan. 14. As of now, the photo has over 53 million likes and beat the prior record holder Kylie Jenner. The previous picture was of Kylie Jenner and Travis Scott’s daughter Stormi.

[Source: Guiness World Records]


Jan. 28-31 As students got back into the swing of things after returning from winter break, they were promptly surprised with four snow days on January 28 to the 31. With a few make up days throughout the year, students were supposed to make up the snow days the week after next, but due to the fact that the school meets the required hours of schooling, the make up days were thrown out.


Theme Night of a Thousand Lights Kings Nominees Nick Peirick, Adam Wisniewski, Javaughn Richards, Tyler Zabrecky, Jelani Warner, and Eli Nirenberg King Eli Nirenberg


With a record of 25-5, Boys’ basketball team won the Conference and Sectional tournaments. They also won the holiday tournament in Highland. “I think it went great,” Scott Farmer, senior, said. “We had three goals: win conference, win the holiday tournament at Highland and win Sectionals, we accomplished all three.” Farmer considers the season a step up from last years and thought it was due to new players and the team’s overall chemistry. The team also participated in summer practices.


Theme An Evening in Paris Queens Nominees Addy Andello, Zoé Short, Maddy Foreit, Maggie Curtin, Sam Barraza and Vanessa Koultourides Queen Zoé Short

[photo by Todd McKechnie]

CUTTIN’ IT UP Scott Farmer, senior, cuts the net after the Sectional win.

WINTER BREAK Dec. 24 - Jan. 7



During winter break, the south end of the school was remodeled. The walls were repainted from their previous off-white color to a new white with two black and red stripes on the upper half of the wall. The lockers were also repainted red instead of the pine green they sported for previous years. The carpet was also replaced with new red, white and black tile. “I think it’s great,” Mrs. Crystal Blanton, math teacher, said. “It’s like High School Musical came and painted our school.” The remodeled area starts at the doors next to the cafeteria and stretches to the band room. There were also minor changes within the cafeteria’s lunch lines including new counters and displays to show food options.

After 11 years and more than 20 movies, the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) closed off their “Infinity Saga” with Avengers: Endgame, which released April 26 and it has become a popular trend in social media. The Earth’s Mightiest Heros’ final match-up with Thanos, the antagonist, has earned Marvel Studios over $2 billion and has become the second highest grossing movie of all time following Avatar. [Source: The Numbers]

PROM April 27

Theme Enchanted Oasis Queen Nominees Megan Dedelow, Vanessa Koultourides, Mikayla Collins, Jordyn Warner, and Addy Andello King Nominees Nick Peirick, Adam Wisniewski, Javaughn Richards, Tyler Zabrecky, Jelani Warner, and Max Paredes King and Queen Jordyn Warner and Jelani Warner


April 22 In April and May, two students, Viviana Luna, senior, and Grace Rau, junior, had the chance to compete in the Vans’ Custom Culture competition. This is the first year students at MHS have entered the competition and the students ended up placing within the top fifty out of 500 schools in the country. The shoes painted had to be certain themes: local flavor and “off the wall.” The local flavor theme is meant to portray a student’s towns characteristics while the “off the wall” theme is meant to be more unique. Although the club didn’t win the competition, they still enjoyed the experience and are grateful for the opportunity.


Getting in the swing of things

May 15, 2019

United as one

Students participated in Unified Sports Day yesterday at track story by

[Atarah Israel] Page Editor

[photo by Mimi Brody]

WIN THE DAY At the Unified Sports Day meet, Matthew Certa, junior, hands Quinn Hasse, sophomore, a ribbon after the race.

Discussion with nationally-ranked tennis players and how they impact Girls’ Tennis team

[photos by Lana Salahieh]

MATCH POINT Shalani Tallamraju, junior, and Sanjana Tallamraju, freshman, warm up by playing a match against each other. The sisters practice for long hours to earn their rankings. “I feel like it took a lot of hard work. Just practicing more and having a purpose when we go (compete),” Shalini said. story by

[Zoe O’shaughnessy] Page Editor

Sisters Shalini and Sanjana Tallamraju, junior and freshman, are both state and nationally acclaimed tennis players. Shalini is third in the State and 126 nationally, while Sanjana is first in the state and 56th in the nation. “It took a lot of hard work to get there, but I hope to stay at the top,” Sanjana said. Starting at ages 3 and 6, after their father wanted them to play in an individual sport to be independent and create their own destiny, they have traveled all over the country to play tournaments. Having been competing against each other for years, Shalini and Sanjana developed a sibling rivalry. “We are always playing each other in tournaments and in matches, we are constantly trying to beat each other, but it’s nice to have that rivalry because it makes us better,” Shalini said. Coach Patrick Spohr, Elliott teacher and head tennis coach, says that the team is doing well this season. He said that he feels that Shalini and Sanjana contribute greatly to the team. “They both are really strong players and set the tone for this

team and how we are going to do,” With Sanjana here, it makes Shalini Mr. Spohr said. “They both come into work even harder and others around practice ready to play evher see that. Everyone ery single day and it has A real ace wants to be apart of suchelped push the team to Parts of a tennis cess and in order to be the highest potential that apart of success, they racket we can possibly reach.” need to work hard.” Shalini thinks that the Bummer Guard Shalini has given a feeling between club tenverbal commitment to String nis and MHS team tennis University of Toledo in is different. Ohio to play Division 1 “What we do at Muntennis. She hopes to reach ster is team tennis, so the the professional level. Beam “I don’t want to have atmosphere is different. You have a team cheerany regrets. I want to see ing you on,” Shalini said, Throat how far I can go in this “Whereas, what I do, is sport,” Shalini said. more independent, and With the regular seaI’m traveling with my dad Handle son ending, Coach Spohr and my sister to differlooks ahead to the off seaGrip ent tournaments where son as the team prepares Butt it’s consistently ‘you’re for Semi-state and State. [source: by] on your own.’ But with a He said they hope to stay team it’s really nice.” in the top five teams in the state as well With current records, Sanjana 16-1 as make State championships, which and Shalini 13-1, they are training five the team hasn’t done in four years. days a week at both club tennis and Not having made State in four years, MHS tennis. Coach Spohr says that the team has a “It was rather the quality of the good chance of making it this year depractice than the quantity of how pending on how hard the players work. many hours we put in,” Sanjana said. “This is probably the strongest team Spohr thinks that the team sees how I’ve had since I became the head coach. hard Shalini and Sanjana work and it The sky’s the limit for this team,” pushes the team to work even harder. Coach Spohr said, “We have a favor“When people see others working able chance to make it to State, then hard, they want to work even hard- anything can happen after that. These er,” Coach Spohr said. “The past three players hold their future in their hands years, Shalini has been great about so we would like to see them go as far coming to practice and sets the pace. as possible.”

Congrats to all the Munster Mustangs on a successful school year from

Dixon’s Florist (219) 836-1668 919 Ridge Road, Unit B-C Munster, Indiana 46321


With spirits high and adrenaline higher, students and staff had a blast participating in Unified Sports Day yesterday. The competition occurred during the school day at the MHS football field and track. “We’re planning on taking the physical education classes out to be spectators and fans,” Mr. Brian Clark, athletics director, said. “Then, we’re getting some track boys and girls to go out and be participants in whatever events that have.” Ran by the exceptional needs department, the game day was formed to be a cooperation between general education and exceptional needs students. “I think it’s a great opportunity to expose the student body to a group of people that perform differently than they do,” Ms. Charity Schmidt, P.E. teacher, said. “My hope is that they react positively.” With such a big event at hand, there were a wide range of participants and volunteers, and the excitement seemed endless. “A peer that may have been approached to participate in the program, and another friend might say, ‘Oh my gosh! I heard about Unified Game Day. I want to be at unified game day,” Ms. Jovanka Cvitkovich, exceptional needs director, said. “Not for any other reason other than to be a part of the type of event that will just encourage that whole inclusive idea that School Town of Munster has been really great at embracing.”



Munster High School Crier

LYNWOOD BOWL 2581 Glenwood Lansing Rd. Lynwood, IL 60411

(708) 895-6633

Bring in Ad Get One Free Game

Come rain or shine

Munster High School Crier

Boys’ Golf discuss weather’s influence on season Page Editor

Boys’ Track

[photo by Robert Young]

UP TO PAR Taking advantage of the sunny weather, DJ Fesko, junior, aims for a golf ball at Wicker Park. “I tried out (for Munster Golf) sophmore year because I wanted to be a multisport athlete,” Fesko said. Golf practices everyday, Monday through Saturday, whether the weather permits.

two strokes against Andrean. Luke Dragicevich, senior, said that this recent success gives them confidence for their Conference tournament on May 21 at Wicker Park. “We definitely have a lot more confidence going into the rest of the season,” Luke said. “Andrean is a pretty big rivalry, even in Sectionals. Whether we’ll go to Regionals, or Andrean might over us.”

Join the club story by

[Atarah Israel] Page Editor

Boys Record: 0-8-1


ith their last game of their season May 18, Boys’ Lacrosse is eager to get on the field and finish strong, according to Ali Soto, senior. “Our season ends the 18th with our last home game,” Soto said. “We hope to get a lot of people to come out and watch. As of right now we are training hard for our last couple games.” Now committed to Mars Hill University for lacrosse, Soto plans to take his lacrosse experience to the next level in college. “The one school that stood out to me was Mars Hill, not only because of its location (in North Carolina) but, the head coach came up and talked to me in person,” Soto said. With a smaller team, team members


As the season continues, Baseball prepares for future games. They play an away game tonight at 5 p.m. against Illiana Christian High School. With the season wrapping up, Drew Westland, junior, is happy with the way the team has developed. “There is definitely good team chemistry,” Westland said. “We’ve come together as a unit over the course of the season.” The team currently holds a winning record of 13-4. Westland believes that this is due to the way they have been practicing all season. “We practice every day of the week, except for Sundays and game days, for around two to three hours,” Westland said. “The main reason we are winning our games is because of the way we prepare in practice and the way we play hard together as a unit on the field every game.”

story by

Boys’ and Girls’ club lacrosse have upcoming games this May

May 15, 2019


[Nadia Perdue] April showers bring May flowers, but for this year’s Boys’ Golf team, the rain has also brought canceled games. With frequent rain, sleet and snow throughout the season, many of their practices have been postponed. “Basically, it’s rained so much that the courses have been closed, so that we can’t even practice,” Mr. Bill Smitka, social studies teacher and golf coach, said. “But usually, if the course is open, even if it’s going to be (cloudy with signs of rain), we’ll play, because what else are you going to do?” According to Jake Galosich, senior, weather significantly influences their activity. In recent weeks, the team has tried to play as much as they can. “Weather is a huge factor when we play,” Jake said. “If it’s raining out, we’ll still play, but once it gets to the point where (lightning) sirens go off we have to stop.” Jake also explained how rare it has been for the team to play in ideal conditions. “The perfect weather to go out there would just be minimal; no wind to a minimal amount of wind, probably ten miles per hour,” Jake said. “That’s the best weather, actually, to play . Unfortunately, we’ve only had that about one or two days out there so far.” One of their most recent games, played at Andrean on May 7, ended on a high note for the team, despite the fickle weather patterns and their unexpected loss to Highland the previous night. The team won by


often have to play longer with no “subs,” or substituting players. Less team members, however, also helps members bond. “It’s nice (having a small team) because you get a lot of play time,” Otto Hoehl, freshman, said. “(But) we play teams with 40 to 45 kids when we only have 15 so it’s kind of a disadvantage.” Although the lacrosse season for the boys may be ending, the relationships and bonds formed will last longer than those few months. “Last year, I met some of my best friends that I have today,” Ethan Castillo, sophomore, said. “Even over the summer, when I played on a summer team, I met kids from Mishawaka, Crown Point, Chesterton and I still talk to them today. ”

Girls Record: 4-3-1


aving an upcoming tournament with victory on their minds, Girls’ Lacrosse is gearing up for the season. The girls are excited and are eager to spread the news. “The difference between school and club is that school sports have a

Hole in one

The schools Munster will be competing with on their May 21 Conference Andrean High School Highland High School Hobart High School Kankakee Valley High School Lowell High School [Source:]

lot more publicity and recognition, whereas for the club we have to promote and spread around when and where our games are,” Gillian Bedenk, senior, said. “It would be awesome to have a big team and more girls exposed to the sport.” With lacrosse being a club sport, there are common misconceptions made about the game, specifically for female teams. “Some people think that the game is really aggressive, but that is only in Boys’ Lacrosse,” Bedenk said. Beyond the field, team members have a chemistry that makes the team stronger, and makes their successes all the sweeter, according to Bedenk. “I believe that all members on the team are close,” Bedenk said. “When we play, we all need to blend. Our relationships off the field are a big part of how we play together.” For many team members, the sport is a way to blow off steam and forget outside distractions. “My brother and his girlfriend started playing, and after watching them play I decided I wanted to give it a try,” Caitlyn Klos, freshman, said. “(Now) it puts me in a good mood because you can just let everything go when you’re on the field.”

Every day after school, Boys’ Track gets ready for practice. The members do workouts or long 7-10 mile runs. The team only does the runs on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Friday. Tuesdays and Thursdays are the workouts. Track isn’t just running, there are other events such as long jump, shot put, relays and hurdles. Each one provides a different challenge. The season is almost done and Sectionals start tomorrow. “I do track to improve myself physically and to get better in general,” Gabe Tienstra, freshman, said. “Track helps you mentally too and helps your mind stay cool and fresh.”


Softball’s season is coming to a close with their current record at 225, according to Their next game is tonight at 5 p.m. against Valparaiso, and Sectionals are in two weeks. “(The team is) feeling confident going into the first (Sectional) game,” Sammy Sellers, sophomore, said. “We play East Chicago and I believe we can beat them, after that we need to play our best softball.” Though they have three games left and Sectionals coming up, Sellers thinks that this past season went well, and feels bittersweet about the season ending and hopeful for next year. “(The team) performed way better than anyone expected and everyone is proud of us,” Sellers said. “There are still aspects we could’ve improved, but next year we can cover those things. I feel proud of what we accomplished.”

[photo by Ava Lukacsek]

BATTER UP Showing off her softball form, Dayton Elliot, senior, swings for a softball during practice.


Munster High School Crier

May 15, 2019


If you had a summer vacation like Phineas and Ferb, what would be your crazy summer invention?

Students discuss construction that will be underway in upcoming months story by

[Alyssa Bass] Copy Editor

With nearly 40,000 cars crossing Calumet Avenue, 15,000 vehicles driving over 45th, and about 24 trains every day, according to the NWI Times, the 45th and Calumet intersection is readily congested with traffic at any given hour of the day. On May 6, traffic on Calumet is supposed to be cut down to one lane, which will stretch through December, to prepare for the two-year 45th Calumet Intersection Realignment Project. Starting in the upcoming months, the 45th and Calumet intersection realignment project is an effort to try and fix the ever growing traffic issue. “I live in West Lakes and Main is already really backed up all of the time,” Mikayla Collins, senior, said. “The 45th street near West Lakes is already ridiculous—sometimes it takes up to 20 minutes just to get to the light. So now if Calumet, or 45th, is going to be one lane, (traffic) is going to be worse and it’s going to take even longer. ” The proposed plan is to build an

overpass that will go under the train tracks belonging to the Canadian National Railroad that run parallel to 45th and to realign 45th Street in order to meet 45th Street west of Calumet. Because of such heavy traffic and upcoming road closures, detours have been made public. Local drivers detour from Calumet Avenue to Fran-Lin Parkway around the closure on 45th and back to the open portion of 45th Street. “Instead of taking Calumet I have to jump on to White Oak and it does take longer not only because I can’t go (on Calumet). That way is slightly faster since I park in the softball fields,”

Max Buka, junior, said. “Most people have to go that way anyway if they live in that general area because it causes more traffic which just kind of makes it harder to get to school, especially on 45th.” All the construction set to take place may make getting to school harder and take longer because of additional traffic and detour routes. “Personally for me, when we are going to back school (next year) traffic shouldn’t be too bad,” Max said. “I should be able to drive to and from school just fine. (Driving) will be a little harder if I’m trying to go somewhere after school, but (traffic) is not that big of a deal it just it’s a daily hassle.”

[photo by Charlie Hofferth]

TRAFFIC JAM Cars wait in after school traffic at the 45th and Calumet Avenue intersection.

Detours Ahead




Munster High School

The map shows and explains the detour routes for the affected neighborhoods, and how approximately long it takes to get to the school. Solid lines represent detour routes and dotted lines are normal routes. The yellow lines represent the roads under construction.

“A utensil that has the ability to switch between a spoon, a knife and a fork.”

Peter Giannini, freshman

“A rollercoaster that turns back time.” Emma Zajakowski, freshman

“I would make a “For my invention I would create a time portable concert so that the world could machine.” hear me perform one song: S.I.M.P. (‘Squirrels in my Pants’).” Dori Clousing, Faith Muczynski, sophomore sophomore

“I would make the biggest trampoline ever and have everyone bounce on it.”

Erynn Escobedo, junior

“It would be really cool to take Bieker Woods and make a giant tree house that ran through all the tops of the trees, that could be a community center.” Hope Meierkort, junior

West Lake route White Oak route Cobblestone route




minutes normally


15 minute




West Lakes




9 minute detour 6 minute normally Cobblestone

Main Street

8 minute detour 8 minute normally White oak [source] [illustration by Charlie Hofferth and Alyssa Bass]

“I would have an ATM in my backyard that spits cash at me.” Nick Peirick, senior

“I would make a machine that makes the weather sunny and between 75-80 degrees everyday.” Mrs. Kim Peirick, business teacher

“I would make a flying car to get out of this Munster traffic.”

Leah John, senior

“I would make summer 208 days, (which is) 104 days longer.” Mr. Morgan Nolan, Assistant Principal