THE HIGH POST highpostonline.com
Volume 88; Issue 7
ACT RECKLESS? THINK AGAIN. Carsurfing, drugs, and other reckless acts are happening across the nation. Before you make the wrong choice, think again. Pages 10-11
How to prepare yourself for the AP testing.
Reality sets in for the senior class of 2011.
Winter athletes lead teams to success
In sickness or in health.
AP Test Preparation
Hard Work Pays Off
Use these recommendations from College Board and AP teachers at Latrobe to help make a decision.
After months of preparation, studying, and long nights of homework, results of students hard work can be seen from Advanced Placement testing.
Shea Augustine Staff Writer
As young adults, our lives are ﬁlled with decisions we have yet to make. An up and coming one for senior high students is deciding on whether or not to take the AP test for an AP class. The variety of AP classes that are oﬀered to students, gives them many opportunities to test out of classes for college and possibly save hundreds of dollars. AP classes can be very beneﬁcial to students. Not only do they help prepare you for the work load in college but they also help students qualify for scholarships. College Board says that 31 percent of colleges look at AP experience when determining scholarships. The AP test is provided every spring for AP students to take in order to receive college beneﬁts. Scoring well on the test could possibly test you out of having to take the class again in college, thus saving you money. Classes that you test out of in high school could add up to saved money for lack of classes in a semester. “The rewards are huge. You can save thousands of dollars and lighten a semester of classes by doing well on these AP tests; if you do well on these tests then most colleges let you skip
Examine your college choices’ standards on AP tests because it is diﬀerent in every school. “Check with your college to see what beneﬁts you’ll be able to receive for scoring well on the AP exam.” –Miss Harvey, AP Spanish Talk to your teacher about his/her recommendation six credits that can be equivalent to more than 6,000 dollars,” for you. If they don’t feel like you’ll do well on it, then said Mr. Snyder who teaches AP history at the Greater Latrobe. “You should consider the beneﬁts to you personally and they’ll tell you. if you are really going to get anything out of it,” said Mrs. Kubus who teaches AP Language and Composition, “If the schools of your choice don’t hold AP testing to a high standard then it’s just a waste of money.” The test costs $87.00 to take. The ratio of students that take the test and the students that don’t in AP Language and Composition is around even. “Around one third and one half of my students take the AP test at the end of the year,” said Mrs. Kubus. “I believe that if you take the class you should take the exam because whether or not you get credit for it, it’s still a good measure of your skill in that subject,” said Bryan Brasile who is a junior at Latrobe and has taken ﬁve AP classes including the ones this year. If you feel like AP testing is a good option for you then you can sign up online or with the school and turn in your money in to the guidance oﬃce.
How to Prepare
One Step Ahead
All the preparation you need leading up to test day.
Taking an Advanced Placement exam can save you both time and money in college. The AP exam costs $87, but passing this exam can save you anywhere from $200-$700. Below are a few colleges and what scores they accept and what credit will be rewarded.
Get the information. Find out possible test questions and essay prompts of the exam, the material that will be covered, and the grading policy. This will ensure you will feel prepared when you take the exam.
Start preparing early. Waiting until the night before your exam is not advised. The exams are long and you will need to be able to stay focused. Make sure to pay attention in your AP classes, take good notes, complete your homework, and read the textbook.
Be Motivated. Remind yourself that you want to do well on the AP exam. You can gain college credit at most schools by scoring a 3 or higher. When preparing for the exam, put away your cell phone and avoid distractions such as television and Facebook.
Practice exam. Log onto College Board and take a practice exam to gain understanding about the style of questions and common essay topics of the exam. Taking a practice exam can also show what topics you are doing well in and topics that you show study more.
Invest in Prep books. They can be a little pricy, but investing in AP prep books can guide you in your studies. Some titles to look at include Cracking the AP U.S. History Exam, 2011 Edition by Princeton Review or 5 Steps to a 5 AP English Language, 2010-2011 by Estelle Rankin. Also check Adams Memorial Library, and the school library for other resources.
Score Accepted: 3 Avg. Credits per Passage: Various* Cost per Credit: $720 Times Credits: X >1 Test Value: > $720 Minus Test Cost: $87 TOTAL SAVINGS: > $633
Score Accepted: 3 Avg. Credits per Passage: 5.5 Cost per Credit: $242 Times Credits: X 5.5 Test Value: $1,331 Minus Test Cost: - $87 TOTAL SAVINGS: $1,244
Score Accepted: none** Avg. Credits per Passage: n/a Cost per Credit: $601 Times Credits: X 0 Test Value: $0 Minus Test Cost: - $87 TOTAL SAVINGS: -$87
Score Accepted: 4 Avg. Credits per Passage: 6.5 Cost per Credit: $586 Times Credits: X 6.5 Test Value: $3,809 Minus Test Cost: - $87 TOTAL SAVINGS: $3,722
All Nighters Extra sleep is more important the night before the exam then extra studying. Make sure to get a good night sleep to feel well rested before the exam.
Breakfast is Key. The day of the exam make sure to eat a well balanced breakfast, such as scrambled eggs, toast, and a glass of milk. This is full of vitamins and can leave you feeling full. Bring a light snack for during the exam to keep your stomach from rumbling.
~Lizzie Ruppen, Staff Writer 2
The High Post
Score Accepted: 3 Avg. Credits per Passage: 3 Cost per Credit: $242 Times Credits: X 3 Test Value: $726 Minus Test Cost: - $87 TOTAL SAVINGS: $639
*= Seton Hill gives diﬀerent amounts of credits per test, based on the exam. **= While PSU does not award credits for AP testing, students can save money by advancing to higher-level classes sooner than usual.
~Lizzie Ruppen, Staff Writer
“For every minute you spend in the classroom, you need at least that amount of time to prepare for the exam. You have to apply yourself, not just cram at the end of the year.” –Mr. Snyder, AP History Look into what you want to study in college and see if taking the class in college would actually beneﬁt you. If you need to take it in college, there is no point in wasting money to take a test on a class you don’t want to test out of. “Do everything you can in order to do your best because taking the test helps you ﬁnd out where you stand with everyone else in the class.” –Dr. Wnek, AP Biology
~Shea Augustine, Staff Writer
The High Post Greater Latrobe Senior High School 131 High School Road Latrobe PA 15650 March 2011 Volume 88 Issue 7
Editor in Chief - Maria Graziano Online Editor Tori Vallana
Print Editor Nathan Takitch
Layout Editors Erika Naeger and April Smith
Business Editor Julia Menarchek
Managing Editor Meredith Saunders
Photography Manager Dan Kubus
Staff Shea Augustine, Sarah Conley, Kal Kemp, Nick Kovacevic, Harrison Leipold, Klaudia Long, Chris McKee, Kaitlin Newingham, Lizzie Ruppen, Jimmy Singer, and Rachel Stauﬀer Advisors Mrs. Renee Stallings and Mrs. Acacia Houck Administration Mr. LoCascio, Mr. Krehlik, and Mr. Smith The staﬀ of the High Post is committed to serving the student body of Greater Latrobe Senior High School. The opinions articles contain the ideas and views of individals and do not represent the views of the staﬀ, the advisors or administration in its entirety. The High Post is a public forum for student expression, therefore any student who wishes to create dialogue concerning an issue may do so by submitting articles or letters to editors in C109. In order to uphold the integrity of the publication, the High Post reserves the right to edit the submissions for grammar, style, and available space. Submissions should not exceed 300 words.
Teacher Feature What does a normal day look like for you?
I teach two US history classes to sophomores. Then, I have a ridiculously early lunch A. After that, I have a double period of Euro History and Lit with seniors, and I ﬁnish up with another two US history classes with sophomores. I eat a very early dinner, because of my A lunch. Then, I spend some time with my daughter and try to do a little bit of exercise. I try to help put my daughter to bed and read to her. Then, I ﬁnish my evening with some TV – usually DVR. Seasonally, I begin my prayer for snow.
Student Teachers Mr. Justin Pacini
Studying at: St. Vincent College, majoring in History Student Teaching with: Mr. Saveikis (Social Studies) Experiences so far: “The student body has been extremely cooperative and enthusiastic and the faculty has been very accepting.”
What is your favorite food and why?
Hopes for Future: “Eventually, getting a job somewhere, and learning a lot about technology and how to deal with the issues of a class. A foundation to grow as a teacher from.”
I like chicken wings with a close favorite being meatloaf. I love barbecue sauce. What is your favorite movie and why? Mini Series: Generation Kill. It is a book and a mini series about the Gulf War from 2003. It is pretty raunchy but pretty right on.
Studying at: St. Vincent College, majoring in English
Ms. Rachel Hochendoner
What did you want to be when you were younger and why?
A teacher known for making his classes interesting and humorous, Mr. Ferarro is also a devoted Steelers fan and dad. His love for all things history shines through in his classroom. What made you want to teach history? I always say that teaching picked me. I didn’t pick it. I never grew up wanting to be a teacher. When you get to that point in your life when you have to make a decision about a major, I did a lot of soul searching and thought this was something I could do. In my pre-teaching classes, it was evident that I could do it.
What kind of high school student were you? I was a social high school student, a funny high school student, a well-attended high school student, and an academically above average high school student. School was so diﬀerent when I went. It was pretty much lecture-based and straight out of the book. I went to Kiski, and I played baseball and soccer.
Experiences so far: “So far, it has gone far beyond just content from English as I am learning about students and the school as well. Greater Latrobe has been extremely welcoming, especially when I entered and tried to ﬁt in the school community. It’s incredibly diﬀerent to actually teach and do it and its full time, sometimes overwhelming, but always rewarding.”
When I was really little, I wanted to be a professional baseball player. At that time, we had a winning team, and I played a lot of baseball growing up. I thought it would be a fun, exciting life. Unfortunately, today I make fun of the Pirates and baseball in general. I have a baseball diamond on my graduation ring, but that was because I ordered mine sophomore year. I ﬁnished my high school career playing soccer. What is your favorite subject of history on which to teach? I like teaching about military history. It brings out the best in people and the worst in people. It inspires the most art for expression – poems, movies, books, etc. They are driven by war.
Mr. Mike Stevens
Hopes for Future: “I hope to use the experiences [from Latrobe] to reﬂect and continue to make a diﬀerence as I continue teaching. The experience from Latrobe will help me when I get my ﬁrst teaching job.” Studying at: St. Vincent College, majoring in Math
How old is your daughter Payton, and do you feel about being a teacher as a well as a parent with a child soon to be in school?
Student Teaching with: Mr. Mains (Mathematics)
Experiences so far: “The real life of a teacher and the diﬀerent challenges of being in front of the classroom, it’s been pretty positive overall.”
Payton is three years old. I have concerns about her dad being a teacher. I want it to be her experience, her space, and her time. I hope there’s room enough in this time for the two of us. I have taught a lot of students whose parents are teachers, and they have no problem. I’ve seen the behavior of students when their teachers are parents. I have even seen some students with their parents as teachers. I know it can be ok, but I fear that, since all dads lecture as it is, I’ll be a teacher to my daughter too much. How hard will it be for her when I’m more popular and cooler than she is?
Compiled by Julia Menarchek
Student Teaching with: Mrs. Snyder (English)
Hopes for Future: “Incorporating new knowledge of what it takes to be a good teacher and the ways to make learning interesting and fun.”
Mr. Angelo Testa
Studying at: California University of Pennsylvania, with a Master of Teaching Biology Concentration Student Teaching with: Mr. Marucco (Science) Experiences so far: “It’s the ﬁrst time ever teaching and its exciting. I have learned a lot about Latrobe and it is deﬁnitely my favorite of any school I’ve been in. It’s been a learning experience.” Hopes for Future: “Try to ﬁnd my unique teaching style through everything Mr. Marucco has shown me in hopes of getting a teaching job.”
Compiled by Jimmy Singer 3
Percussions of Concussions
Concussions: How serious they really are
REAL LIFE CONCUSSION: JAKE ENOS
Kaitlin Newingham Staff Writer Dealing with injuries is a normal part of an athlete’s life; a sprained ankle, a stoved ﬁnger or a pulled muscle have a set time table for return to play and some injuries can be played on if necessary. An injury that should be taken very seriously is a concussion. Concussions can be a result of an impact to the head, an elbow to the face, a hit into the boards, or falling hard to the ice or court and the serious side eﬀects of concussion are making coaches, trainers and players more aware. Concussions occur at all levels, from high school to professional, and in all sports, football, hockey, soccer, basketball and wrestling. Headaches, dizziness, fatigue, nausea and sensitivity to light and sound are common symptoms but if someone experiencing a concussion is hit again serious postsecondary concussion symptoms can occur. “The worst part about having a concussion was that I would fall asleep in the middle of doing homework or watching TV,” said junior, Allie Campbell. After being in a car accident Campbell began experiencing concussion-like symptoms, once she was diagnosed with a concussion by the trainers, she missed part of her basketball season. The brain is one of the most important organs in the body and if it is rattled it can have serious consequences. Concussions are caused by swelling in the brain and cannot be detected by CT scans or MRIs. The most serious concussions involve bleeding of the brain. Recent studies have shown that 40.5% of student athletes return to action prematurely, which can cause long term symptoms. In 2007 a New Jersey high school football player, Ryne Dougherty, died after he suﬀered a hit to the head, two weeks after another football related hit left him with a concussion. Dougherty’s death raised questions whether he should
have been cleared to play despite failing the concussion test that was deemed invalid. For student athletes their biggest goal is to get back in the game, but the sooner isn’t always better. “The best thing for a student who thinks they have a concussion is to go see a doctor that is a professional in concussion management,” said Latrobe trainer Teresa Zepka. “There are a lot of doctors out there that aren’t trained for [concussion management], and it is important for the safe return of the athlete that they are taken care of properly.” Proper precautions aren’t something that is optional, even if it means playing without the teams top scorer and captain, it is not worth the risk. Sidney Crosby, captain of the Pittsburgh Penguins, hasn’t played in a game since January 7 and his status for return this season is still questionable. Even though the Penguins haven’t released an oﬃcial statement many speculate that the concussion he sustained is from hits in both the Winter Classic and game against the Tampa Bay Lightning. “Well if Sidney Crosby gets hurt I again I wouldn’t be happy so it’s probably best if he takes a long break,” said junior Dannielle Pratt. Those students who suﬀered from concussions during a sport season know how frustrating this type of injury can be. Unlike other injuries, you can’t see it improving you just have to wait for the symptoms to subside. Whether it is at the professional or high school level concussions must be taken serious. Missing part of a season is worth it when an athlete’s long term health is at risk. The recent statistics that have come out are helping coaches, trainers and athletes realize how signiﬁcant a head injury can be. ggg
What sports did you play when you were younger? Do you remember anything that would have caused a concussion? ENOS: Football. Every time we did hitting drills my head would hurt very bad and I would get dizzy. What sports do you play now? ENOS: Hockey and I snowboard. What was the hit that caused your latest concussion? ENOS: My head was down at center ice and the kid hit me really hard. My head hit the ice and started hurting right after. What did the doctor say? When did he give you clearance? ENOS: All I was allowed to do was watch TV and sleep. I was cleared about two months after the hit. What happened when you were snowboarding? ENOS: I was at 7springs and hit a 35 foot jump. I was completely horizontal in the air and landed on my back. How has this impacted your life? ENOS: I really have to watch contact sports and I get a little dizzy when I get headaches. What precautions do you have to take now when you are playing hockey or snowboarding? ENOS: I have to make sure I don’t hit my head and if I do I have to watch for headaches. If i get a headache I have to immediatley stop.
Concussion Recovery After a concussion an athlete can not just jump back into their normal sports routine. They must follow this routine to be sure that they are ready to jump back into the game. -Athletes are withheld from competition for at least six days. -When symptoms subside, athletes begin a light bike workout. -If light bike workout can be performed, athlete moves up to a more vigorous bike workout, jog, or non contact sport specific workout (A basketball player would do agility drills or sprints). -If non contact workout is performed without symptoms, a full contact workout can resume. Compiled Compiledby byNick NickKovacevic Kovacevic 4
The High Post
Compiled by Kaitlin Newingham
Concussions at GLSHS
Concussions are inevitable when it comes to contact sports. GLSHS follows these guidelines. -An average of three athletes are seen for concussion symptoms each week at GLSHS. -The IMPACT test is used for all athletes, and provides a baseline from which suspected concussions can be compared. -Athletes must be symptom free for at least two days before they can return to their sport. -Students suffering from concussions get physician clearance for a modified workload in school, because concussion victims cannot do school work as easily due to the head injury Compiled by Nick Kovacevic
Independence Hits Seniors
Senior Year Brings Independence For Students Tori Vallana Online Editor Driving on your own. Leaving for college. Traveling abroad. Getting an after-school job. Starting your own life. Becoming independent. Independence means doing things on your own; doing everything on your own. It means eventually breaking away from your parents and teachers to become a self-sustaining adult. Becoming independent is an exhilarating part of growing up, but it can also be intimidating. For the typical sophomore, an increased sense of freedom began when the little babies of the junior high were left behind for the mature young-adults of the senior high. They are big dogs now. Being a part of Greater Latrobe Senior High also means a heightened social life. Between a ﬁrst trip to the den, ﬁeld trips that aren’t to the planetarium, and the experience of the wildcat mall; choices are always present. On weekends students ﬂock the mall, to get jeggings, Uggs, and yoga pants, and the movie theater, to see anything from Never Say Never to The Roommate. The only limitation for independence is cost. All of these added privileges come with an added cost. Many sophomores get pressured by empty wallets (or nagging parents) to get their ﬁrst job. Having a job can seem lame, time consuming, and boring. In reality it’s rewarding to know that you earned the money you have and you don’t need to rely on your parents to buy your new iPhone or that top you have been eyeing up. In the junior year, the big freedom is driving. The majority of students become licensed drivers and can feel the freedom of the road. They learn the luxury of going where
they want, when they want and taking whoever they want along with them. Some restrictions do apply, such as the eleven o’clock curfew, and the limits parents may enforce, such as a limit on passengers. Limitations aside, driving without adult supervision is a huge responsibility that needs to be taken seriously as the passengers, the driver, and the others on the road are at risk each time someone gets behind the wheel. Being independent requires making smart choices based on the morals parents instilled in their teen without their parents there to remind them of what is right and what is wrong. With this new privilege comes great responsibility. Seniors are the top dogs of the school. Our thirteen strenuous years of education are culminating right before our eyes. It’s all so passé now. We know what having a job is like, we have been driving for a year now, we think we have been there and done it all. Then reality sets in. Many of us will choose to go to college next year; away from our friends and family, away from high school, and away from the town we grew up in. It’s scary. Moving away is the biggest test of independence of your life. If you aren’t already suﬃcient on your own, you will soon be forced into it. No one is there to restrain you. Dad can’t tell you to skip the party and study for your test. Mom can’t do your laundry for you anymore. Teachers don’t care if you skip class. All of your decisions rely on you and only you. True personalities are allowed to show through based on the decisions you make. You ﬁnd yourself. Even after college independence only becomes a bigger part of life. It won’t go away. As we mature, we all learn that independence is the key to living a successful life.
are you ready to live on your own? 1. Are you able to cook pasta? a. Do Spaghetti-O’s count? b. Of course I can. c. I can with some help from mom. 2. The last time I did laundry was… a. Never. b. Yesterday. c. I tried it once a few months ago.
3. What do you do when you get overly stressed out? a. Cry and complain. b. Organize myself and work through it. c. Try my best to calm down, but I am usually left over whelmed. 4. Do you manage your own bank account? a. What bank account? b. I have for a while now; ever since I got a job. c. I have my own account, but my parents help to bal ance it and tell me to put money in. 5. The outfits I wear are based on… a. What my friends are wearing. b. What I like to wear, whether it’s trendy or not. c. The popular trends with my own twist.
View results on highpostonline.com
What is your biggest concern of becoming independent?
“I’m most afraid of my college roommate. I don’t want my roommate to be weird and I don’t want to go through the trouble of trying to change my roommate.” ~Kate Thornburg, senior
“Not liking the college that I choose, and not being successful at the career that I choose. Also, I’m afraid of not being able to ﬁnd a house.” ~Katelyn Hill, senior
“Living up to my expectations. I want to be some kind of trainer or psychology major, and I know that that takes a lot of years. I want to make the right choice for my job.” ~Alisha Knupp, senior
“That I’m going to be in debt, and that I’m not going to be able to ﬁnd a husband. I’m afraid that I’m never going to succeed.” ~Ashley Hoyle, senior
~Tori Vallana, Online Editor
“I’m not really worried about anything with the school itself, but I think that I will start getting nervous about my roommate. I don’t find out who I’m with until the summer.” ~ Emily Buncie, senior “That I will be single forever. I want to have a husband and kids. I just don’t know if someone’s worth my time.” ~Jessica Saenz, senior “I’m worried about where I’m gonna be. I am enlisted in the army. There are several stations overseas that I could have to go to.” ~Rich Shall, senior
~Nathan Takitch, Print Editor
“The Roommate” Scares Students Moving To College Entering your college’s doors for the ﬁrst time is exciting and nerve wracking. You will face new and challenging classes, crazy college parties, and pull all-nighters cramming for an exam bright and early the next morning. Since college freshman are now independent and living on their own, the most common questions running through everyone’s mind are, who will my roommate be? Your roommate is basically the person you will meet and spend the most time with going to parties, grabbing a bite to eat, or even studying. It is important that you build a relationship since you will be living in close quarters with them for nine months. In “The Roommate,” Sara, as a freshman at a University in Los Angeles, is looking forward to meeting her new roommate. When she opens the door to her dorm room, to her amazement she ﬁnds two empty beds. It’s a dream come true, Sara gets the pick of the side of the room. Instead of waiting around for her roommate to arrive, she meets Tracy and together they excitingly experience another college ﬁrst- a frat party together. The next morning Sara ﬁnally meets her roommate Rebecca. They click right away; end up hanging out and walking with each other to class or grabbing a bite to eat together
day after day. After awhile, Sara begins to realize how Rebecca is obsessing over her and watching her every move. If Sara was out too late, Rebecca freaks out asking where she was and who she was with. She purposely would cause herself pain and make Sara feel sorry for her in order to get Sara’s full attention on her only. Sara came home a few times to ﬁnd Rebecca wearing a necklace which was the only item left to remember her sister by. All of Sara’s friends try warning her about Rebecca, but Sara only denies it thinking that Rebecca’s just trying to protect her. In reality, her roommate is ﬂat-out crazy. Rebecca’s obsession over Sara continues to worsen. She threatens Tracy to stay away from Sara so she can have her roommate all to herself. Rebecca doesn’t want Sara to go out with any friends; she selﬁshly wants that. Stephen, Sara’s new boyfriend, becomes suspicious as well and tries to get her to move out before Rebecca’s obsession gets worse. With Stephen’s help, Sara tries to hide from her crazy roommate before it’s too late.
~Rachel Stauffer, Staff Writer 5
Head Coach: Matt Basciano Returning Letter Winners: Seniors- Jimmy Palombo Josh Shoemaker, Tyler Walker Juniors- Jordan Gianinni
Returning Letter Winners: Seniors- Dave Blawas Juniors- Ben Bigo, John Skoloda, Mac Flasher,
2010 Summary: In 2010, the Wildcats had a bittersweet campaign. The ‘Cats were able to overcome adversity to be in the hunt late for a playoﬀ spot. The Wildcats had to win against Hempﬁeld in one of their ﬁnal games of the regular season to make the WPIAL playoﬀs. However, Latrobe was not able to defeat the Spartans for a spot in the postseason. Even though the baseball team missed the playoﬀs, it was still a positive year. The team was able to get many players quality varsity experience that will help the team compete for the section title and a spot in the WPIAL playoﬀs in 2011. Game of Interest for 2011: Rivalry games against Hempﬁeld are always close, exciting, wel-played ball games. These teams have a history against each other. After last year’s loss against Hempﬁeld, which eliminated the Wildcats from the playoﬀ race, a new dynamic to the rivalry against the Spartans has developed. The ‘Cats will be sure to put it all on the line to avenge their loss from last year.
“Expectations are high for 2011. Our goals for the season are to win the section championship and make the WPIAL playoffs.” – Tyler Walker, Senior
Goals for 2011: “This is going to be a challenging year. We lost a lot of talented starters. This year’s team has big shoes to ﬁll, but I’m optimistic. There is some real potential there. But they will have to turn that potential into a product and put it on the ﬁeld.” -Coach Matt Basciano
Coaches: Dr. Wnek (Head Coach), Amy Klugh/Todd Simpson (Distance), Michelle Butler (Sprint), Tom Turnbull/Frank Cremonese (Throwing), Tony Mehalic (Hurdles)
The High Post
“Our goal for the season as a team would be to come together and finish with a winning record. Improving on last season is the main goal for the year.” – Kim McDonagh, Senior
Game of Interest for 2011: Senior night takes place on May 13 when the Wildcats take on Vincentian Academy at 7:30 at Memorial Stadium. The seniors will hope to go out on a bang in front of their home crowd. Goals for 2011: “Because of the number of kids in our school and the realignment of divisions, we were selected to be moved down a division. This move should make us more competitive. We are hoping to have at least a .500 season in 2011.” -Coach Sapir
“I think the team goal should be to get as many people to states as possible. We usually have a couple every year, but with enough dedication we definitely have the potential for more.” – Andrew Menard, Senior
Game of Interest for 2011: Come see the last two section champs meet at Memorial Stadium on Wednesday April 20th. Goals for 2011: “The goal every season is to qualify for the team championship playoﬀs. Our younger male athletes in all events will need to perform well. Near the end of 2010, these athletes showed a lot of improvement. Hopefully they can pick up where they left oﬀ at the end of last year and continue to improve.” – Coach Wnek
“Considering the depth of talent on the team and the drop in division, we should improve significantly for this season. A winning record is a definite goal.” –Nick Stano, Junior
Goals for 2011: “We deﬁnitely want to get back into the playoﬀs this year. Overall, you could say that this season is going to be a rebuilding year for us, but we have strong leadership on this team. I feel that the leadership will take us a long way this year.” -Coach Mains
Goals for 2011: “This season we have some strong talent in our juniors and seniors. We hope to increase our skills and our abilities as a team and gain another playoﬀ appearance.” -Coach Russo
Returning Letter Winners: Seniors- Alexa Larkin, Hannah Poponick, Rebecca Taylor Juniors- Taylor Adams, Emily Banner, Rachel Conrad, Carmelena Moﬀa, Marissa Larkin, Emily Yokopenic, Kelsie Zoppetti Sophomores- Kaity Finley
2010 Summary: The Boys Tennis team had a diﬃcult year in 2010. They had individuals on the team that had nice seasons, but the team was only able to put together an overall record of 6-6. Their .500 record was good enough to get them a fourth-place ﬁnish in the section for the regular season. Game of Interest for 2011: Any tennis match against a section opponent will bring some interest, but the rivalry match against Hempﬁeld on senior night will be fun to watch. Latrobe is looking to defeat a Spartan team that has given them trouble over the past several years. It will be interesting to see how the depth on Latrobe’s roster handles a match against a Hempﬁeld team that is strong in talent level and in numbers. The match is on May 2 at 3:45.
“I think we will do well this year for sure. We have a great coach and now we are in a different division. Having a winning season is a goal. It will be fun.” – Kate Thornburg, Senior
Game of Interest for 2011: The girls lacrosse team will have a game against Greensburg Central Catholic that is sure to be fast-paced, hard-hitting, and full of action. It will be an exciting matchup for lacross fans and should be a close game. Check out the action on April 15 at 4:00.
Coaches: Bob Kovalcin, Rick Kozusko, Cindy Mitchell
Returning Letter Winners: Seniors- Brian Gravelle, Justin Klimchak Juniors- Trevor Octavio, Mitchell Wilt
2010 Summary: The Wildcats had a tough season in 2010. The relatively new program is still working on the transition from competing as a club team to competing as a varsity sport. Although a 3-13 record is not necessarily something to boast about, the Wildcats have done a good job competing against teams with more of a history. Several of the lacrosse team’s losses were in close, hardfought matches. The team is looking to continue to improve in 2011.
2010 Summary: In 2010, the ﬁnal season under Coach Walter’s leadership, the girls lacrosse team (11-8) was Latrobe’s best yet. The team beat both Baldwin and Upper Saint Clair twice which is a remarkable feat against two top teams in the WPIAL. The example that the seniors demonstrated allowed the team to be extremely competitive. Latrobe’s girls lacrosse team was not an easy matchup for any opponent to handle. The Lady ‘Cats were able to make the WPIAL playoﬀs. Although they were eliminated from championship contention early, 2010 was a season to remember for the girls lacrosse program.
2010 Summary: The Boys team (1-7) was very young in 2010 and the dual meet schedule reﬂects that fact. Graduation took its toll in the distance and ﬁeld events for the boys in 2010. Returning letterman Jeﬀ Elam is the defending WPIAL champion in the 300M intermediate hurdles.
Head Coach: Jon Mains
Returning Letter Winners: Seniors- Peter Artuso, Pat Davoli, Chris McKee, D.J. Rossi, Dan Trainer. Juniors- Zach Daigle, Gordon Sapir, Nick Stano, Ian Steel, Matt Steele, John Vredenberg Sophomores- Gian Prosperri, Grant Sapir
2010 Summary: The Girls team (3-5) was very competitive in 2010; losing two meets by less than two points. The girls won the Derry Area Relays, while Kim McDonagh and Danielle Scalise earned medals at the WPIAL meet.
Goals for 2011: “The goal every season is to qualify for the team championship playoﬀs. The girls’ team should be very competitive again in 2011. A solid group of athletes return in the running and jumping events and our throwers will continue to work hard at practice. One area of concern will be the pole vault due to inexperience.” –Coach Wnek
Goals for 2011: “To continue the level of excellence over the past eleven years, and return to state play oﬀs as we have three out of the last four years.” -Coach Vosefski
Coaches: David Leskell and Scott Sapir
Returning Letter Winners: Seniors- Katie Critchﬁeld, Caitlin Egan, Rachel Gribbin, Ashley Hoyle, Anne Jupena, Kim McDonagh, Carly Meholic, Danielle Scalise, Danielle Shojaie, Tori Vallana Juniors- Shannon Bossart, Alex Brant, Jessica Doris, Jessica Falbo, Stevie Huston, Anne Jakubek, Rachel Komisak, Savanna Moore Sophomores- Mary Bobula, Francesca Fazzini, Sarah Fox, Mary Fratto, Hanna Green, Hannah Jones, Natalie Kovatch, April Krivoniak, Ciara Lavelle, Kasey Paul, Carly Yelenic, Hayley Simpson
Game of Interest for 2011: Come see the Cats try to avenge last season’s loss to rival Hempﬁeld on Wednesday April 20th.
“I am looking forward to the upcoming season. Our team definitely has what it takes to make another run at a WPIAL Championship” – Dave Blawas, Senior
Returning Letter Winners: Seniors- Liz Bereit, Mel Biddle, Katelyn Bell, Val Dunlap, Maria Graziano, Kate Thornburg Juniors- Tori Russo, Katie Uhring
Returning Letter Winners: Seniors- Cole DeLuca, Mitchell Kalning, Ryan Keys, Zack LaDuke, Andrew McCarty, Andrew Menard, Brandon Perillo, Carmen Sylvania, Nathan Takitch Juniors- Byran Brasile, Frank Doris, Jeﬀ Elam, Dan Ferguson, Ethan Greek, Rob Ulishney Sophomores- Kevin Davoli, Andrew Hanna, Sean Pischke, Tyler Rager, Garret Somers, Jacob Weise, Lucas Weltz
2010 Summary: The volleyball team had a very successful season last year. 2010 graduates Colin Sherwin and Greg Maxwell led the team to a section title. After winning the section, Latrobe advanced to the WPIAL playoﬀs. After wins in the early rounds of the playoﬀs, the Wildcats advanced to the semiﬁnals. A loss to top-seeded Fox Chapel eliminated the ‘Cats from champioship contention. Latrobe ﬁnished 4th in WPIAL, just one match shy of states, however it was another season to remember. The Wildcats lost some of their depth, but the tradition of winning that the volleyball team has instilled in their players should continue in 2011. Game of Interest for 2011: Home matches against Penn Hills and Penn Traﬀord will be competitive. Fans shuld show their support for the volleyball team during their home matches against these rivals on April 12 and April 21. Both games are at 7:30.
Head Coach: Kaytie Russo
Head Coach: Dr. Wnek (Head Coach), Amy Klugh/Todd Simpson (Distance), Pat Murray (Sprint), Tom Turnbull/ Frank Cremonese (Throwing), Tony Mehalic (Hurdles)
Head Coach: Drew Vosefski
“I am very excited for the upcoming tennis seaon. Even though we lost our two best players from last season, there is no doubt that we can still be a competitive team this year if we work hard.” – Trevor Octavio, Junior
2010 Summary: The softball team continued their tradition of success into 2010, where the Lady Cats were able to pull out another section title. However, the softball team had an early exit from the WPIAL playoﬀs. They lost a hard-fought game against Shaler, one of the top-ranked teams in the WPIAL. Considering that the two starting pitchers for the Lady Cats, Alexa Larkin and Rebecca Taylor were only juniors, the season was overall a success. With a tough pitching corps for this season, the softball team will be tough to be and will be a contender for a WPIAL championship come playoﬀ time. Game of Interest for 2011: Games against rival Hempﬁeld are always exciting to watch. It will be a competitive contest on senior night on May 7 at Rotary Field at 2:30. Come right after school ends. Goals for 2011: “We hope to win the section and WPIALs. Unlike last year, we now have an experienced team that can go to states.” -Coach Mitchell
“If we stay focused and work hard we should be the section champs this year. My goal for our team this season is to win the WPIAL championship and go to states.” – Alexa Larkin, Senior
Compiled by Maria Graziano, Dan Kubus, Harrison Leipold,Chris McKee, and Nathan Takitch
Winter Sports Teams Utilize Individuals to Complete a Successful Season Lucas Bureau Junior Boys Swimming In Lucas Bureau’s third year of swimming, he accomplished the hefty feat of breaking four school records: 200 IM, 100 butterﬂy, 100 freestyle, and 100 backstroke. In his 2010 season, he also helped in breaking the 200 freestyle record along with Charlie DeFrancesco, Hunter McGrogan, and CJ Shrum in 3:20.13 and the 100 breast stoke in 0:59.54. Lucas qualiﬁed for the PIAA state championships on March 18 and 19 for the 100 freestyle and the 100 butterﬂy.
Ty Lydic Junior Wrestling This was a milestone year for junior Ty Lydic. He had a succesful season that was highlighted by ﬁrst place ﬁnishes at the individual WPIAL Championship and King of the Moutain for the 135-pound weight class. In the King of the Mountain tourment, Lydic won the honor of being named outstanding wrestler for the entire event. Lydic posted a record of 40-9 for the season helping him break the century mark of 100 wins. He won his 100th match when the team won the WPIAL championships. Lydic’s strong record was key to helping the ‘Cats win the county and section championships and make their ﬁrst appearance in the state championship meet. The Latrobe wrestling team as a whole had a fantastic season, ending overall with 19-4. A milestone was made when the entire team traveled to Hershey in February for the PIAA Class AAA Wrestling Team Championships, a ﬁrst at Latrobe. Although the grapplers were defeated, the team came in eighth overall and gained valuable experience through their time there. Senior Chace Small accomplished his 100th career win during the season, while over ten members of the team had twenty-ﬁve plus wins.
Tim Cengia Junior Diving Junior, Tim Cengia a member of the Greater Latrobe Diving team, took home ﬁrst place at the Westmoreland County Coaches Association (WCCA) on Friday January 4, 2011. He scored 411.43 points to ensure his ﬁrst place victory. This is Cengia’s second ﬁrst place win at WCCA. He is a three year member of the GL Diving team, and a three member of the 200 point club at the high school.
Zack LaDuke Senior Ice Hockey Zack LaDuke, the senior captain of the IceCats, led the hockey team to a third-place regular season ﬁnish in the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Hockey League standings with a strong total of 31 points for their 15-4-1 record. The 66 points LaDuke scored, including his 36 goals were enough to lead the PIHL in both categories. LaDuke scored all ﬁve of the IceCats goals during the 2011 postseason campaign. Unfortunately the Wildcats were knocked out of the playoﬀs in the league semi-ﬁnals against second-place Bishop Canevin, but Zack LaDuke and the IceCats provided another exciting season for Latrobe hockey fans.
Emily Friedline Senior Girls Swimming For the second year in a row, Latrobe girls swimming team won section championship. The girl’s captain, and only senior, Emily Friedline helped to lead the girls to become champions. Other key swimmers included Maddie Hoopes (sophomore), Gina DeFrancesco (freshman), Kayla Owens (freshman), and Taylor Smail (junior). This year’s championship was unexpected due to the loss of key seniors along with other members. The team was even further unexpected because of the low number of swimmers compared to other teams. Even with the small numbers however, Friedline and the Lady ‘Cats were able to pull through.
Kim McDonagh & Danielle Scalise Seniors Indoor Track In this season’s PTFCA (Pennsylvania Track and Field Coaches Association) competition for indoor track, Kim got 5th in the long jump with a jump of 17’ 7.5’’ and made it to the semiﬁnals of the hurdles with a preliminary time of 9.63 and a semiﬁnal time of 9.55. She ﬁnished 13th overall in the hurdles. Danielle received 6th in the triple jump with a jump of 35’ 11.5’’ which was her best of the season. McDonagh and Scalise were able to score enough points by themselves to get the Girls Indoor team a 33rd-place ﬁnish at the state championship meet.
-Compiled by Shea Augustine, Dan Kubus, Klaudia Long, Lizzie Ruppen, and Nathan Takitch 8
The High Post
DON’T TURN YOUR BACK ON CYBERBULLYING Jimmy Singer Staff Writer Bullying – it’s always been a part of life. In elementary school, everyone remembers the tall, intimidating kid with a buzz cut and baseball hat who took your lunch money or pushed you down on the playground. Immediately, you were embarrassed, hurt and crying, ﬁlled with scars, both literally and ﬁguratively, even when your friends and fellow classmates were near. In our technological age, bullying goes beyond the playground. Today, bullies attack victims in a new way – cyberbullying – through e-mail, instant message, cell phones, social networking and other technology related devices. Principal Mr. LoCascio weighs in, “The instant communication of today is a huge factor, as a lot stems from this growing issue.” The security and protection of home is taken away through the infusion of technology.. “Because it’s done so anonymously, the bully doesn’t see the consequences linked to the bullying that follow, as it’s no longer face-to-face contact,” elaborates Director of Pupil Services, Dr. Soltys. “That’s the greatest concern.” Greater Latrobe School District administrators and faculty have recognized the growing issue of cyberbullying. Though the actual cyberbullying doesn’t occur within the school, consequences can result if incidents arise in school. Due to the privacy of technology, it can be hard to pin point the beginning of cyberbullying incidents. “The instant communication has compounded the situation to a level that is diﬃcult to control,” stated LoCascio. “The rules of the game are diﬀer-
ent.” Through the courage of senior high students Carmalena Moﬀa and Val Dunlap, the school board was made known of the increase in cyberbullying that had an impact at the high school. “They deserve a great deal of credit for sharing the perspective of students,” said LoCascio, “Anyone who has concerns or has the courage to stand up and say something to make things better should get involved.” He noted that the students are the greatest security system, with 1000 sets of eyes and ears throughout the school, adding, “All students must work together and react to prevent further unacceptable bullying.” When an incident occurs, administrators, teachers and parents of victimized individuals meet to create a solution for each personal issue, varying because the vast scope of technology adds to the complexity of the issue. Through investigations, proper disciplinary actions are taken. LoCascio commented, “We don’t turn our heads, but instead, deal with the issue.” Additionally, all students at GLSHS partook in a survey regarding their experiences with bullying, which gave administrators a quick overview of student perspective on the problem and what they really felt. Generally, from the results, the highest percentage found that students were bullied most often electronically. “The survey gave us an idea and reaﬃrmed the students’ experiences with data to support,” added LoCascio. GLSD is not the only aﬀected party, by the growing electronic harassment. The conse-
quences of cyberbullying are countless and a new scene of events is in the news almost daily. Locally, a ﬁght broke out between a couple in Rankin, PA after a woman’s boyfriend read something on Facebook that she had sent to a male friend, which is what started the altercation. In fact, a recent statistic shows that one in every ﬁve petitions for divorce list Facebook as a cause for one reason or another. Upper St. Clair School District warned parents to monitor their children’s internet use after several students became direct or indirect victims of cyberbullying. In addition, in the Montour school district, a cafeteria ﬁght was caused at the high school due to cyber bullying. A bill in progress in New Jersey could aﬀect another cyber related issue, ‘sexting.’ The bill would make ﬁrst-time oﬀenders to complete a diversionary program. Sadly, the pain and anguish of cyberbullying has drastic reactions such as suicides. In March 2010, Phoebe Prince, a new student from Ireland at a Massachusetts high school, was tormented by a group of at least nine through social networking media such as twitter, craigslist, facebook and formspring. She ultimately committed suicide. This electronic bullying is causing unnecessary tragedies. Now, GLSD is reacting with a formal district-wide bully prevention program. According to Soltys, a core team will be put together of principals, counselors and teachers. “A kick oﬀ involving all the stakeholders will occur,” added Soltys. “From this, I hope all students develop skills they can take out into the world, from how
Q&A: Cyberbullying in your school. What do you think?
“I think it should be handled in a better way. It doesn’t seem like a lot of things are being done to stop it. There have been too many cases were a child has taken their life due to the internet. It’s not good and needs to stop.-Katie Holtzer, junior
“I personally think cyber bullying is one of the worst ways to bully someone, and it’s getting out of hand. Its seems to be occurring more and more with the increase of technology.”-Sam Lupchinsky, junior “I haven’t ever been cyber bullied, nor do I know anyone who has been cyber bullied.”-Shiloh Kail, sophomore
“I would have to say that the network should have better control on what’s posted so that problems can be solved before they ignite.”-Alex Brant, junior “I think it should have attention brought to the issue in order for people of authority to be aware of the situation and its severity for an ultimate solution.” -Carmelena Moﬀa, junior “It should be handled between the victim and the bully.”-Molly Yandrick, senior
“I know people cyber bully on facebook all the time.”-Mirch Carr, senior
“I’ve never really witnessed anyone being bullied. I feel it doesn’t happen as much as everyone makes it seem.”-Alexis Brickel, senior
“I don’t really think you can stop cyber bullying. People will always do things like this, no matter how much you talk about it.”-Cameron Musgrove, junior
“Kids should not have cell phones because that’s how they express their feelings and spread rumors.”-Alyssa Adams, sophomore
“My two friends made a facebook account and bullied one of my guy friends. He called the cops and there was this big thing.”-Katey Guessford, sophomore
Compiled by Klaudia Long
Fake Tan, a Mean Girl Personality, and a TV Lifestyle: Who do you think you are? Snookie. Erika Naeger Layout Editor
I think it is safe to say we like the celebrities who play the roles in our favorite shows. In a recent episode of Glee when Quinn cheated on Sam, we felt angry. In Pretty Little Liars, some breathed a sigh of relief that Toby Cavanaugh wasn’t guilty for murdering Allison after all. Viewers tend to have a personal attachment to celebrities. If they mess up though, viewers lose their faith. For example, Two and a Half Men star Charlie Sheen is in a little bit of a hole with his career. Checking himself into rehab after committing some “nefarious deeds”, viewer’s really start to question the actor’s show they have been tuning into for the past week nights for a good laugh. In Sheen’s case, his show isn’t exactly the cleanest, but he took it to the next level by bringing some of those behaviors, and maybe even some worse ones, into his personal life. Recently, Two and a Half Men has been cancelled due to Sheen’s continuous display of bad behavior. This personal attachment that we feel with these kinds of characters, especially seeing them in their personal lives, make us believe we can act like them without consequences.
To read the rest of Erika’s article visit www.highpostonline.com
to treat others in school to how to get along with people in their future lives.” Eradicating bullying fully is impossible, as it is human nature to disagree with others, but the GLSD hopes it will reduce incidents and help victimized students stand up. Although it can be diﬃcult for a victim to seek help, the only way for their anguish to end is through communication. “If the school is not aware, there is not much to do to stop it,” added Soltys. Additionally, if students witnesses acts of bullying as bystanders, they should support the victim by speaking up to the closest adult. “Communication is the key,” stated LoCascio. “We are all here to help, and you are not alone.” For the school district, the diﬃcult part of this type of bullying is that a large majority of it occurs outside of school. Everyone must work together to put an end to it. “All types of bullying require a reaction from everyone involved. We need the help of parents, older brothers, and sisters and other family members, as no one person can stop it,” stated LoCascio. “It takes everyone to do what’s right” Soltys furthered this view, “It’s important to recognize that we are all in this together, all involved as parents, community members, students, faculty, custodians, bus drivers, and people in the lunch rooms. We all need to unite and work together for this common cause, eliminating bullying.”
Other Schools: Real Bullies Lauren Newby of Dallas, Texas became the focus on web site message board. Rude posts were added mocking her weight, encouraging her boy friend to break up with her, among other things. Lauren’s bullies did not stop online; they egged her car, wrote inappropriate things on her sidewalk, and threw a bottle of acid at her house.
To read about other cyberbullying incidents in other schools visit www. highpostonline.com
Did you know? -A studyy through the Media Awareness Network Ne found that only 16% of the students surveyed regularly talked with their parents about what they do online. -According to the publication Internet Week, educators estimate that more than 160,000 students miss school each day in the United States because they fear being bullied or harasses by their peers. -Research shows that victims of cyberbullying are two thirds more likely to have thoughts of suicide. -32% of teens who use the Internet report some form of online harassment. -In a recent study, 72% of participants, ages 12 to 17, claimed they knew who was doing the cyberbullying.
Compiled by Maria Graziano 9
Don’t Try This at Home
Reckless Behaviors Inspired by Media TV shows such as Skins and Jackass inspire talented, skilled children to commit reckless, dangerous acts. Nick Kovacevic Staff Writer The teenage years are deﬁned by deﬁance and the desire to ﬁnd one’s identity. Young people have many diﬀerent inﬂuences, whether it be friends, family, or the media. The teen years are the most impressionable, especially with risky behavior. Teenagers gain independence for the ﬁrst time, and experiment with racing cars, drinking, and drugs. Popular media is riddled with examples of risky behavior, whether it is shows such as Skins, or Jackass, or celebrities such as Charlie Sheen and Miley Cyrus. Behavior portrayed in the media has the power to inﬂuence people, and teens are especially impressionable. Locally, there are reminders that daring and recklessness can be deadly. In the past two years, students from Upper Saint Clair and Greensburg Salem were in car crashes. In Upper Saint Clair, three students were killed going 100 miles per hour on the Parkway, according to the Pittsburgh Post Gazette on Feb 22, 2010. In Greensburg, three teens were killed when their car crashed on the way home from a party that involved alcohol, according to the Tribune Review of June 27, 2010. Reckless behavior resulted in communities and schools being forever damaged by preventable behavior. While teens ultimately make their own decisions, inﬂuences from the media cannot be denied. When people watch a movie or show such as Jackass, they see stunts being gloriﬁed on the big screen, which appeal to their curiosity. When only the ﬁnal product is being showed on TV, the stunts look fun and create an enticement. Some young people recreate stunts and record them; many even upload the endeavors on YouTube. Such stunts can be fatal. A prime example is the car surﬁng tragedy in DeBary, Florida. Two teens, 15 and 19, died while surﬁng on their cars. While TV or movies might not have been their main motivation for car surﬁng, it deﬁnitely could have been an inﬂuence. Junior Joe Friend is a Jackass fan, but he doesn’t feel the need to copy the stunts. “I watch the movies, but I have never actually thought of doing the stunts, the movies are just entertainment. I have never wanted to copy something I saw on TV.” Celebrities, most recently Charlie Sheen and Miley Cyrus, are popular ﬁgures whose actions have the power to inﬂuence. Charlie Sheen, famous for Two and a Half Men, has been a public spectacle with his overindulgence in drugs and women. Former Disney poster child Miley Cyrus was videotaped smoking a bong, when her lewd action went viral many parents were enraged that a popular youth idol was behaving in such an irresponsible manner. In both cases, celebrities are garnering attention for activities which should not be publicly gloriﬁed. Teenagers will always experiment with drugs, because of curiosity as well as praise in the media. MTV’s Skins is a very controversial new show that portrays a group of teens who engage in excessive sex and drugs. In one episode, teens were shown buying hundreds of dollars in drugs, as well as driving a car into a river. Not every teen acts in the manner of a show such as Skins, but its inﬂuence should not be undervalued. Shows like Skins can portray drug use as glamorous, instead of an illegal activity John Skoloda, a junior, isn’t inﬂuenced by extreme behavior in the media. “TV shows portraying drugs deﬁnitely make it seem more acceptable to do illegal things, but that doesn’t make them right. I don’t let the media decide what is or is not right.” While the methods may change, teens will always try to push the envelope. Kids will take risks with cars, sex, and drugs. They will also be inﬂuenced by the media. Kids must know to separate their decisions from entertainment, life is too important to waste by imitating television
Car Surfing Kills High School Student Jim Watson from Louisville, Kentucky lost his nineteen year old son, Ben, a freshman at Western Kentucky University, in a car surﬁng accident earlier this year. Ben was one of ﬁve children. One of his many goals was to join the Peace Corps. He speaks openly about the loss of his son.
“We have pictures and we have memories and we have friends, but we don’t have him. And I’d throw all these away to have him walk in that door because it hurts that much.”
~Jim Watson 10
The High Post
Reckless Teenage Behavior
Drugs Marketed as Every Day Items nothing out of the ordinary Rachel Stauffer Staff Writer
Today started out as nothing out of the ordinary. It’s winter and the first nice day since the snowstorm, but the sun shines so bright that it puts everyone in a good mood. I turn on the radio to 96.1 Kiss who is playing “Yeah 3X” by Chris Brown and I grab my DG sunglasses. Students rush out of the parking lot, ready for the weekend festivities. At the intersection of Route 30 and Route 981, by the Rusbosin Furniture, I start noticing a couple guys doing something I had never seen in my eighteen years of life. The blue ﬁve-speed Mazda and a black Honda Accord slow to a stop, but their anxious drivers are doing anything but waiting for the green light. Two boys jump out and start running around their cars on the road as if there was no one around them. My jaw dropped, I couldn’t believe it. Green light. The boys race back into their cars and speed oﬀ to the Saint Vincent intersection. Nothing happens- but I can tell something is going to happen as soon as this light turns green. Route 30 has a long stretch of road before Beatty Crossroads and I can assume what they do next, but I don’t want to believe that they go through with it. The engines are revving, they are ready to go. Tires screech. I can’t believe the speed they are going, it has to be close to a lightning speed of 100 miles per hour. They are so far ahead of me and all I can think is that if they don’t hurt themselves, they are going to hurt someone else. It’s unreal. I can’t believe my eyes. Then it happens. The sun may be out, but the black ice is something they didn’t expect.
~Meredith Saunders, Managing Editor *fiction based on reality
“Daniel Corsaro, a local 50 -year old resident of Southwest Greensburg, was admitted into the hospital from hallucinations and he had no idea why. To his surprise, his neighbor living on the ﬁrst ﬂoor of the apartment was running a drug lab with 28 diﬀerent chemicals. The man claimed he was not running a meth lab, but his goal was to make a legal hallucinogenic drug. He was not arrested because what he was doing was “legal” since he was not running an illegal drug lab, but then again he caused someone else a ﬂoor above him to end up in the hospital from hallucinations” (ThePittsburghChannel.com). Hazardous and life-threatening drugs are being disguised in their deceitful marketing and people need to be aware of their dangers. A relatively new substance that can cause dangerous hallucinations, paranoia, and suicidal thoughts is Bath Salts. Not the salts you pour into a warm bath after a long, stressful day, but a powder-like substance that is intended to be snorted, smoked, or injected in order to get high. Packaging this drug as legal Bath Salts is a marketing scheme for disguising dangerous drugs. Although most of the use is being reported from the Midwest and Southern states, awareness of the danger of these salts will prevent them from being in the homes and hands of teens in Westmoreland County. These salts are available legally in convenient stores such as Wal-Mart and grocery stores according to Trooper Norton, PA state trooper. The packaging is similar to a sugar or sweetener packet and sells for $40 per two-hundredths of an ounce (TodayShow. com). Anyone can get a hold of this drug that goes by various names such as Ivory Wave, Bliss and White Lightning- innocent sounding names for drugs that are so dangerous. Bath Salts are similar in eﬀects to Crystal Methamphetamine (Meth), and are a much cheaper and more accessible. The main stimulant found in Bath Salts is Methylenedioxypyrovalerone, also known as MDPV. According to Trooper Norton, the DEA does not regulate this stimulant but since Bath Salts are causing deaths across the U.S., they are being placed under federal scrutiny. The problem is that sellers of these salts are legally selling them under diﬀerent names. “It’s scary to imagine people taking this drug that causes such extreme side eﬀects. The fact that people know how lifethreatening this drug is and then ﬁnd ways to disguise it is sickening,” says Linda Comunale, junior. After consumption of Bath Salts, users experience: paranoia, hallucinations, rapid heartbeat, violent behavior, and suicidal thoughts, which can last up to or more than 24 hours. “Users of Bath Salt have shot themselves and cut their throats; one man even took a skinning knife to his face and stomach repeatedly. Poison Centers in 25 states across the country received emergency calls from the consumption of this drug” (WashingtonPost.com). “Even though concealed Bath Salts are legal throughout the U.S., Louisiana, North Dakota, Florida, Hawaii, Kentucky, and Mississippi have banned the drug. Nationwide there were over 360 calls to poison centers from Bath Salt users” (USAToday.com). “Thankfully I don’t know of any incidents involving bath salts to date in the Westmoreland County area, but I believe that the more we start to hear about them on the news and in the media, young people in this area will be drawn to them because they want to “try” something new,” says Trooper Norton. Another increasingly popular drug in the United States is K2- synthetic cannabis known as “fake pot” or spice. “Masqueraded as incense or potpourri and packaged in brightly colored bags, K2 produces a high similar but 15 times that of marijuana” (CBSNews.com). Under federal emergency measure these synthetic cannabinoids are treated as illegal drugs along with heroin, marijuana, and ecstasy. “On Friday March 18, 2011 in Blaine Minnesota, over a dozen teenagers overdosed and one died at a house party from taking a hallucinogen. When the police arrived they found the youths struggling to breathe and some were found hallucinating. The designer drug being used in this case was 2C-E, synthetic marijuana very similar to spice, K2 and bath salts since they all contain the unregulated stimulant, MDPV” (XFINITY News). “Because of the increasing number of reports from poison control centers, hospitals, and law enforcement agencies, a nationwide ban, as of December 24, 2010, has taken place. This ban will remain in place until the DEA, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services determine if these chemicals found in K2 are considered unsafe or abused. According to
the U.S. Attorney’s Oﬃce, federal penalties for possession and traﬃcking of K2 depend on the amount involved, when and where it was seized, and the defendant’s criminal history. Since a state law regarding these cannabinoids has not yet been passed, law enforcement oﬃcers can seize these products but cannot prosecute the user.” (Trooper Norton) Before the ban, K2 could be purchased at any convenience store, gas station, etc., and came in packages appealing to young people. Even with the ban in action, both teenagers and adults will continue to use this drug even if it is harder to ﬁnd because it can be found on the black market, just as any other illegal drug. “I think younger people are willing to try anything new, so the appeal for K2 will be increasing even more now because it is a banned substance,” says Trooper Norton. He states, “It is much more potent than regular marijuana and the high eﬀect lasts a lot longer but with very negative side eﬀects. The side eﬀects are similar to that of very strong Narcotics similar to Cocaine and Phencyclidine (PCP).” K2 was not originally intended to be smoked or used as a recreational drug, but instead for cancer patients. “With his research funded by the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA), Dr. John Huﬀman, chemist at Clemson University ﬁrst created the K2 compound in the mid 1990s. He found only negative side eﬀects of K2, nothing positive. Huﬀman never intended K2 to be used as recreational hallucinogenic, but when the details of components in of this drug including JWH-018 in a book, someone got a hold of his ideas and recreated the drug for a legal alternative to marijuana” (Greenvilledragnet.com). “K2 causes increased heart rate, dangerously high blood pressure, loss of consciousness, paranoia agitation, anxiety, hallucinations and psychotic episodes. Users of this drug experience withdrawal and addictive behaviors as well. K2 aﬀects the cardiovascular and central nervous system causing life-threatening hallucinations and possible seizures” (CNN.com and LiveScience.com). Trooper Norton states, “People, especially young people, who foul around with any type of drug are playing Russian roulette with their lives. They may feel that these, K2 and bath salts, are safe alternatives to the more dangerous drugs, but they are very wrong. These are extremely dangerous drugs and will aﬀect their life and even possibly kill them.”
In Sickness and In Health
Keeping Good Health Q With few days off and many five day weeks, being sick is one of the only ways to not go to school. But is it worth it? Even though being healthy is always most important, missing only one or two days can lead to hoursof make-up work.
Kaitlin Newingham Staff Writer
We’re in the long haul, three months with minimal and get better. “If you’re legitimately feeling sick and you’re breaks, cold weather and unforgiving sickness. Striving to be legitimately sick. Stay home,” said Mrs. Rost, the school nurse. in school as much as possible is “The classic excuse is students say seemingly the key to good grades they had to come to school to take and actually understanding the a test, but by the time they take material that is being shot at you the test they have all ready been at machinegun pace. But how in contact and possibly infected sick is too sick? What decides their fellow students. If a student whether you’re going to get up in is ill, nauseous or vomiting, stay the morning and push through a at home to prevent spreading.” long day in the classroom? And Sometimes you’re unfortunate what does perfect attendance enough to get hit with those really mean, is it worth the pain? sicknesses that last days upon Every morning getting days. The stomach ﬂu, or a out of bed gets harder and harder. fever can last a week before you After staying up way too late feel better enough to resume ﬁnishing math homework and an your daily activities. “I couldn’t English project, no one feels like stay awake because I was so going and spending another seven exhausted,” said Doug Smeltzer hours at a desk just to go home who missed four days of school and repeat the same process, but with laryngitis and the ﬂu. we all must do it. The only thing For students who don’t usually in our way to success in the last get sick often, being around half of the school year is sickness. sick classmates isn’t favorable. The dreaded ﬂu may “If someone is really sick its catch you oﬀ guard but for some gross, like if they’re hacking all people it is worth going through over my supplies I don’t want it Photo by Dan Kubus to aﬀect my health,” said Alex the coughing, sneezing and drowsiness to have the sometimes Regardless of how sick they were, Palmer. It is important to be coveted perfect attendance. Kelly considerate of those around Polland always gets to school. some students would still come to you when deciding whether “I was sick and I was miserable, school just so they wouldn’t miss a test. or not you’ll come to school. but I came anyway. It looks good When it looks like the for colleges if it looks like you winter is going to last forever, made an eﬀort to get there,” said Polland. “Plus I don’t want just cross your ﬁngers and hope that Punxsutawney to miss the work.” Missing three to ﬁve days of an eight Phil was right, that spring is just around the corner and class day can generate hours upon hours of make-up work. soon after that the warm days of summer. With summer Sometimes you just need that sick day to sleep comes sickness free months and lots of fun in the sun.
Prevent Sickness In order to stay healthy through the winter months, use these tips to help stay germ free. •
According to germx.com, over 80% of infectious illnesses are spread through the hands.
To prevent sickness, take 20 seconds to vigoriously scrub your hands, in between fingers, and your wrists for a complete clean.
Each year, appromately 24,000 people die each year due to the flu, according to the Centers for Disease Control and On average, 64 students miss school each week. In February alone, the nurse sent home 59 students. Prevention. In effort to keep kids healthy, Latrobe supplies boxes of According to WPXI.com’s article “Coping with the Cold and tissues and bottles of hand sanitizer for each classroom. Flu Season”, flu symptoms include general aches and pains, headache, fatigue, exhaustion, stuffy nose, and cough.
Photos by Dan Kubus
Compiled by Erika Naeger and Kaitlin Newingham 12
The High Post
with junior Doug Smeltzer
Having missed a lot of school due to sickness this year, Doug knows first hand how it is to be sick and then come to school with make-up work. ~ Kaitlin Newingham, Staff Writer
Kaitlin Newingham: How many days did you miss school? Doug Smeltzer: I missed 4 days of school (a Tuesday through Friday).
KN: What were your most challenging classes to miss? DS: AP Calculus, AP History, and AP Chemistry. KN: How did you make the decision to stay home? DS: I couldn’t stay awake I was so exhausted. KN: Did you get your work while you were at home sick? DS: I had a lot of projects to work on so I already knew what I had to do. KN: How did you communicate with your teachers? What did you tell them? DS: I emailed my teachers when I needed to talk to them. I just let them know that I wasn’t going to be there. KN: How long has it been since you were sick? Is all your work made up? DS: 3 weeks and just about. KN: What tips do you have for students who miss long periods of school due to illness? DS: As for tips, get back to school as soon as you can, and make sure you have a smart friend who can teach you most of the stuﬀ you missed.
Published on Mar 1, 2012