Sept 14 Leaf

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Sycamore High School Student News Magazine Volume 2 | Issue 2 | September 26, 2014

Building a strong

Image by Lauren Glynn

“Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.” - Albert Schweitzer

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[ inside this issue ] The Leaf

Sycamore High School 7400 Cornell Road Cincinnati, OH 45242 Adviser Cheralyn Jardine Photographer McDaniel’s Photography About us Professional memberships: • Columbia Scholastic Press Association • Journalism Education Association • National Scholastic High School Press Association • Ohio Scholastic Media Association • Ohio Professional Writers (National Federation of Women Writers) • Quill & Scroll International Journalism Honorary

Staff Writers Jordan Baker Jenna Bao Natalie Brinkman Caroline Bruns Ben BrynjulfsonReardon Emily Chien Adhiti Chundur Hannah Clark Taylor Close Benjamin Cohen William Coleman Meghan DiGiovanna Jake Englander Sydney Evans Max Fritzhand Zachary Fritzhand Meredith Gottliebson Charles Harte Sarah Horne Claire King Riley Kurtz Claire Lefton Beverly Liu Jack Loon Melinda Looney Harsimran Makkad Ellen Martinson Ethan May Zachary Milliken Joshua Patterson Esther Pittinger Anthony Popenoe Madeline Schramm Lauren Shassere Luke Tenbarge Max Torem Emily Tyler Kamaria Walton Leah Wallihan Neil Yejjey Nathan Zhang

[ news ]

[ a&e ]

2 | new movie theater in blue ash

7 | Guy Fiere visits Over the Rhine

3 | garden club kicks off for the year

8 | marching band springs into new season

[ opinion ] 5 | he said vs. she said: a double sided take on ray rice

8 | ‘rocky horor picture show’ review

[ cover story ]

6 | kroger bans ice cream, allows guns

9-12 | relationships and their impact on our lives and futures

[ feature ] 14-15 | a complete guide to a successful homecoming

[ sports ] 17 | boys golf comes to a close 19 | cross country progresses through season

[ spotlight ] 21 | Jesse Li, 10, on fencing

The Leaf, the official print news-magazine of Sycamore High School, serves as an educational tool in the training of student journalists. We provide information and editorial leadership concerning school, national and world issues. We also provide a public forum for the exchange of ideas and viewpoints and to give coverage to newsworthy events directly related to the diverse school population. The viewpoints are purely of the staff of The Leaf and not the administration.

editors’ note

Print Editors-in-Chief Atiya Dosani Lauren Saxon Web Editor-in-Chief Kathryn Tenbarge Leaflet Editor-in-Chief Lauren Glynn ASSIGNMENT EDITORS Lila Englander Brenda Shen Associate Editors Joseph Ahn Madeline Marsh Anna Zhou Managing Editors Abbey Baker Isaac Goldstein Creative Projects Joseph Ahn Taylor Evans Hannah Frey Elizabeth Rickert Orion Schlosser Zoe Schlosser Business Manager Caroline Gao Web Master Eli Seidman-Deutsch Broadcast Editor-in-Chief Victoria Swart news Hannah May Sports Alex Wittenbaum Eli Zawatsky FEATURE Hannah Frey Lauren Kurtzer A&E Amy Deng Ben Ruskin Opinion David Wertheim Spotlight Brooke Landrum Fun & Games Rujula Kapoor

As members of convergence journalism, we have learned what it means to build and maintain relationships. Within the staff, it is necessary to interact and connect with all other members. Not only have we realized the importance of

relationships in class, but we have also developed important relationships out of class. Establishing connections with teachers and adults around the building is vital whether it is for an interview, a quote, or even eventually a college

recommendation letter. We hope this issue provides you with ways to form those positive, long-lasting bonds and different relationships around SHS. -Atiya Dosani & Lauren Saxon


Rice expelled from nfl


staff writer


Photo by Jacob Englander

In the spirit of building a stronger community, Principal Doug Mader has organized two days that will be known as “REDO” days, RE-DO standing for “Respect Everyone Despite the Odds.” RE-DO is an idea created by the Violence Free Coalition of Warren County. Its goal is to improve peer interactions and increase personal power. The first RE-DO Day will be Oct. 3, and will include 200 seniors. The second day in Nov. will include a combination of 200 freshmen, sophomores, and juniors. RE-DO Day will last from 7:00 a.m. to 2:15 p.m. High schools in the Cincinnati area such as Loveland, Kings, Middletown, and Lebanon have reported positive outcomes from yearly RE-DO Days.

Later in The Leaf

See p. 7 for an opinion piece on the Ray Rice scandal

Hannah clark

staff writer Ray Rice, former football player of the Baltimore Ravens, was cut Monday, Sept. 8, after the release of a video in which Rice abused his fiancé, Janay Palmer. It seemed that Rice was drunk, and when he and Palmer got into a scuffle in the elevator, it seemed he knocked her unconscious. The video was released to the press and soon appeared all over the internet, talk shows, and the news. A long conference was held deciding Rice’s punishment for domestic violence. After a private conference with the NFL, the Ravens decided that Rice would soon be released from the NFL indefinitely. Palmer then proceeded to defended her husband by posting a quote on Instagram saying, “THIS IS OUR LIFE!”

Photo courtesy of MCT Photo

Blue ash antiCipates New Theater Construction of Envision Cinemas on Cornell Road will be completed by summer 2015. Roughly a mile from SHS, the establishment of the new movie theater is good news to many movie-going students. The restaurant will serve American cuisine as well as sushi and drinks. The movie theater will have seven

theaters with 500 seats total. Tickets will be above regular price, but the price is compensated by the elite visual and sound equipment. This theater is all about convenience for the movie-goer. There are said to be plush armchairs with remotes that allow you to order snacks and drinks.

Shooting for safety

Student Hannah Abrahamson has been recognized as the first Transition Internship Program employee of the week. She has two jobs at which she excells; she is a representative for All Things Alpaca, which makes clothing and clothing materials from alpaca fiber. Abrahamson also works at the Bethesda North Hospital.

Photo by Esther Adams

Hannah Abrahamson

Although the content and process has been drilled since elementary school, A.C.E bells are once again reviewing A.L.I.C.E training. Schools, places of worship, businesses, and hospitals have been using this lockdown method to ensure minimum casualties in the case of an intruder. Teachers and students alike feel this topic has been over-talked for such a simple and logical idea.



Administration approves Garden Club lila englander assignment editor


incinnati Public Schools’ Rothenberg Academy completed constructing a rooftop garden this summer. Their triumph over architectural, monetary, and geographical obstacles illustrates the growing force and popularity of urban environmental initiatives. Inspired by the importance of teaching agricultural sustainability, Garden Club has embraced the mission of creating a garden on SHS property. “We’re trying to take something we’re passionate about, gardening, and share it with the Sycamore community. It’s a great way to relax, to connect with the earth more than we normally would, and to do a bit of good in the world,” senior and Garden Club co-founder, Katie Steinberg said. Although already in its third year,

Garden Club recently received for people,” Chinese teacher, Mrs. official club approval, marking a Ning Zhang said. In 2014, through the generosity of milestone in the evolution of the club since its conception in the summer Mr. Terry Willenbrink and the City of Montgomery, the of 2012. Garden Club is now based in By spring of 2013, the It is a a greenhouse conveniently Garden Club allied with located across from the the Blue Ash Elementary great way school. The produce garden, in which club to relax and high continued to be delivered participants managed the garden in return for connect with to the cancer support community. temporary ownership of the earth While the greenhouse one garden bed. offers advantages like Garden Club also partnered with Blue Ash Cancer a longer growing season, club Support Community, which donated leaders simultaneously pursue the funds for plants and materials for the opportunity to create a vegetable garden. In exchange, all vegetables garden on school grounds. “Let’s be honest, doing almost any were delivered to the cancer support community for their organic foods club with good company makes it cooking class. Garden Club also worthwhile to stay involved. Garden Club in itself is really cool, and the planted and donated potted herbs. “Spending time connecting with crew that participates makes it even nature is really important. In better,” senior Michael Choi said. 27 Garden Club members met Garden Club you can spend time with friends and do something good after school on Sept. 19 to tour the greenhouse and recruit new members.

Photos courtesy of Lila Englander

Over the summer, Cincinnati Public Schools’ Rothenberg Academy implemented a complex rooftop garden system. SHS Garden Club works toward a similar goal of creating raised garden beds on school property. Meanwhile, the club is hosted in the City of Montgomery greenhouse across from SHS.


Staff Editorial

Relationships equate fulfilling experience

Leafing through the masses: Why is it important to build relationships?


Photo by Esther Pittinger

t’s easy for The Leaf to endorse relationship building. From interviews to networking to staff teamwork, every aspect of journalism requires strong human connections. However, journalism serves as a microcosm for anyone hoping

It’s important because you have someone there for you when you need help or to talk. You feel like you can be yourself around them. Taylor Feltner, 12

to succeed in high school. Everyone needs mentors, advocates, and friends. The most common advice given to high school students: get involved. This might literally mean to join clubs or sports, but the institutions are only a means to an end goal of building relationships with teachers and peers. SHS is academically and athletically acclaimed, but the most important kind of learning that goes on here is interpersonal. Any alumni can say what got them their job or what memories of high school they smile back on. It’s not their SAT score, it’s the people they knew. So instead of advising students to get involved in extracurricular activities, this issue of The Leaf prompts SHS staff and students to get involved with the talented, caring people in these halls.

You can help them with stuff and they can help you with stuff and you can live a happy life. Kyuzo Kelly, 10

No one is capable of doing everything. Having people around you with different mindsets helps you get through things in life. Jessica Wei, 11

When we get to the real world we have real world experience with people and have people skills. Noah Flege, 9


Davidwertheim Wertheim David opinion chief opinion chief

I do not condone what Ray Rice did. Any male that beats up a female, married or not, should be thrown in jail. The fact that Rice, the former Pro Bowl running back for the Baltimore Ravens, only received a two-game suspension from the NFL originally is atrocious. Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon received a full-year ban for a marijuana infraction. Rice could take pleasure in the fact that he knocked his wife unconscious, spit in her face, and dragged her out of the elevator with her looking like a rag doll. This being said, Rice is not the only person at fault here. The National Football League (NFL) commissioner Roger Goodell handled this whole process entirely wrong. How, with a league as large as the NFL, could they not get the evidence from that night? That is virtually impossible. According to a recent news report, a law enforcement officer had very likely sent the tape to the league. Goodell issued a statement that said otherwise. Now, the tape obviously existed, because it came out to the public. So how could the NFL not get it? My theory is that they were just trying to protect one of their stars. Rice was arguably the best running back in 2012, but had a down year last season. The NFL probably believes that he would bounce back and bring some winning back to the Baltimore Ravens. But the Cleveland Browns, cellar-dwellers for the past decade, were forced to have their star wide receiver benched for the whole season. How is Goodell not at fault here? People, including former players such as ex-Bengals linebacker James Harrison, are calling for Goodell to resign, and I cannot help but to agree with them.


Lauren kurtzer feature chief

As a woman, I am appalled by not only Ray Rice— for hitting his then fiancée—but also the Ravens organization and Roger Goodell for playing image cleanup and not addressing the situation. I do not care what the video in the elevator showed and when Goodell had it. Janay Palmer-Rice was conscious when she entered the elevator and then unconscious and dragged out by her now husband in an Atlantic City hotel. He should have gotten at least an eight game, unpaid suspension. Two games is a joke. Rice used violence on a woman and the NFL decided he should not have been punished as bad as if he had a DUI charge—where players have been suspended from four games up to a season. During this time, the Baltimore Ravens sat back and did nothing. They let the NFL punish their own player. Once the video in the elevator was released by tmz. com,Thirty Mile Zone on Sept. 8 the Ravens and the NFL went on protective mode. The Ravens immediately cut bait with Rice. This does not look good for a top NFL organization with a recent Lombardi Trophy, excellent coach and management. If they kept Rice and had him indefinitely suspended then the $25 million he got from being released would not be in his pocket. Goodell and the NFL indefinitely suspended Rice after the video was released. Goodell denies ever seeing the video but other sources confirm that he had it since April. Although one of the most respected businesses in the U.S., the NFL is in turmoil regarding concussion lawsuits, constant substance abuse, Performance Enhancing Drugs, and domestic violence. Goodell has been leading this great sport downhill for months now. I call for Goodell’s job, and hope that the Atlantic City judicial system will take responsibility for their light punishment on this horrible crime. Images by Lauren Saxon



High school is no PB & J Natalie Brinkman staff writer


here are a total of 1,638 students that walk the halls. 407 seniors, 407 juniors, 379 sophomores, and 415 freshman, along with 30 students in Level 23. However, no one ever leaves the comfort of their own grade. During lunch, between classes, and during bells, you see the faces you have known and recognized from years past. These are the kids you have spent your life with, getting to know and forming bonds with. Lunch: The perfect table consists of all your close friends, nobody looks around to sit with younger or older students, that is just out of the picture; secure and conventional works here, and that is the way it stays. Halls: Students never bother to say hello or make introductions with strangers. Older people are scary and younger people are lame. It is safe to stay where you belong, adding a new grade into the mix will make it complicated.

Classes: There are classes with a variety of grades; your friends are who you want to be paired up with, not this face that you might vaguely recognize from the halls. Many might ask how interacting with different ages would benefit them, and there are reasons why students should mingle outside their standard friend group. To underclassmen: It is valuable to make connections to those older than you because they have shuffled these halls numerous more times than you, and have valuable knowledge about your surroundings. Yes, it would be easier to just keep swimming in the halls and never think twice about that face you have passed; is that not what school is about? However, it is valuable Photo by Lila Englander

to make friends with someone who can help guide you through the tough transition into high school and beyond. To upperclassmen: Forming bonds with younger students will help with your leadership skills and people skills. You could change a student’s high school career with just a few tips and tricks. To everyone: Make the most of your high school life. What is one more friend going to do to you? Be different, be bold, and try to make friends with people outside the norm, students outside of your grade.

Kroger puts lives at risk by allowing loaded guns NATHAN ZHANG staff writer

You walk down the aisle of the largest supermarket chain in the country – Kroger – and you notice a man with a shotgun slung over his back. You are left pondering, “Is he going to harm us?” Kroger is somewhere my family goes regularly to get groceries. That said, this fact will change if the company fails to revise their open carrying of guns policy. After the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School, people have responded. Organizations such as Moms Demand Action (MDA), formed after the Sandy Hook tragedy, believe people should not enter public spaces armed with weapons putting lives around them at risk.

Currently, MDA is leading a campaign in order to get Kroger to ignore state law and to ask shoppers to leave their guns at home. Is that too much to ask? Situations such as these put others’ lives at risk, as well as yours and your loved ones. These situations, can be prevented if Kroger would just use common sense and add guns to their list of prohibited items. Is it really worth risking unnecessary injury or death for the small chance that guns brought into Kroger will be solely for safety? Frankly, I do not think so. According to Niccolo Machiavelli in his book, “The Prince”, “In general, men are ungrateful, dishonest, cowardly, and covetous… They will offer you their blood, their lives, and their children when it appears that you will not need…their word.” So Kroger, let us prevent the deaths of others by doing the right thing and prohibiting open carry of guns in your stores.

[ a&e ]

[ column ]



Scan this for more information about acts in the upcoming Variety Show.

Guy Fiere cooks up excitement in Over the Rhine Charles Harte


staff writer

iners, Drive-Ins, and Dives is devoting an entire episode to Over the Rhine. If you are not familiar with the show, it airs on the Food Network and features revered chef Guy Fiere traveling the country in search of renowned food. They have already visited Cincinnati and shot with their three choices: The Taste of Belgium, Bakersfield, and Senate. Each restaurant was selected for their unique dishes, style, and popularity among the locals. Bakersfield is a Mexican style restaurant that specializes in tacos with handmade tortillas, as well as salsas, guacamole, and a wide variety of beverages. Next, the crew headed over to a unique pub: Senate. They are best known for their crazy hot dogs. When browsing their menu, a certain dish stood out. Its ingredients included wasabi mayo, wasabi peas, and even ponzu-wasabi slaw. The name of the sausage? The Hello Kitty 2.0. The final restaurant that Fiere worked with is likely much more familiar to of the readers. The Taste of Belgium is one of those places that everyone has heard of, but few have been to. This small brick eatery specializes in all foods Belgian, from chicken to (you guessed it) waffles. These Belgian waffles are not like the kind you would buy at iHOP, however. They’re made with bread-like dough, and are not as sweet. Do not let the change of texture prevent you from trying anything new, though. “I had the waffles. They were really good,” freshman Tyson Levy, said. The Taste of Belgium also has a wide variety of crepes. “I got a banana Nutella crepe and it was amazing,” freshman Nikhil Sekar said. Are you going to check these restaurants out now that they have the Fiere seal of approval? If not, you can check out the episode on Friday, Oct. 10 at 10 p.m. on the Food Network.

Screening with Ben

Ben Ruskin a&e chief

This summer and early part of autumn have had some phenomenal (and not so phenomenal) movies hit the box office. “Guardians of the Galaxy,” in my opinion, was better than the average Marvel super-hero type movie. The film incorporated humor, action, and drama at the same time, and that is not an easy task. Overall it rates a solid five out of five stars. Another interesting movie was “Lucy,” all though it was a little bit confusing at times, it had a fantastic ending. If you are going to see “Lucy” in the future, just be aware that it is a movie that you really need to be paying attention to the entire time. “Let’s Be Cops” is another major title in the film industry. “Let’s Be Cops” was a very funny movie. There were multiple really great cameos throughout the film, and I think that contributed greatly to the quality of “Let’s Be Cops.” The book gained millions of fans in the past couple years but the movie really did not live up to the hype. “The Giver,” was not nearly as good as the book, and if you are expecting an exact replica of the book on screen, don’t. There are a plenty differences between the book and the movie. In TV news, “Masterchef,” is coming to close, with the final three competitors going head-to-head cooking and trying to win the prestigious competition. This Autumn we can look forward to popular shows returning, such as “The Walking Dead,” “New Girl,” and “Community.” “Community” has won itself yet another season through “Yahoo.” After the cancellation of the series by NBC, yet another (kind of) TV network has picked it up. The whole cast of characters will be returning to the show, including the creator Dan Harmon. Enjoy the exciting time of TV shows coming back for new seasons and movies being released.



Springing new season: Marching band prepares its seasonal selection Emilie King

W staff writer

ith high spirits and music on their minds, the marching band makes its way onto the football field, ready to perform for each halftime. Their show is called “Spring Into Spring,” which they have worked to perfection. The show’s message highlights the wonders of springtime and the music is equally as energetic and beautiful. “I kept a journal of ideas, music,

pictures, or anything interesting or intriguing,” marching band director James Blankenship said while explaining how he chose the springtime theme. “After I’ve compiled a list I sit down with the directors and we filter out the shows that we think best suit our students and an identity that we are beginning to form in my first year.” “This is the most stacked field I have ever seen at the Dayton Regional in 15 years of teaching the activity,” Blankenship said. There are a variety of competitions around the country. This season, the directors chose to compete in a few circuits at some of the biggest regional events in the area. One of the songs in the band is “Paradise” by “Coldplay” which Blankenship said would be “fun, happy and toe tapping.” “Spring Into Spring” uses usual marching band props, such as flags and wooden rifles with the color guard. Something new are the trampolines that they are using to enhance the ‘spring’ effect. “The props for this show came fairly easy to us. Spring has a lot of iconic images that it brings to mind as well as the interesting look that springs have,” Blankenship said. Marching band is one of the many extra-curricular activities, but their work ethic (often putting in daily 12 hour practices during the summer) proves that the group is one of the most hardworking teams around the campus. “We are very pleased with our design and we’re all going to have a lot of fun with the students putting it together throughout the season and developing in the concept,” Blankenship said.

Photo courtesy of McDaniel’s Photography

[ column ] Ben Cohen staff writer

‘Rocky Horror’ Saturday night “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” tells the story of the newly engaged, Brad and Janet, who plan on going to visit their former professor, when their car breaks down. With nowhere else to go they visit a nearby mansion to ask for help, but they ultimately get sucked into the evil plans of a transsexual transvestite, Dr. Frank-n-Furter. In other words, a classic story of boy meets girl meets cross dressing alien. Since the film’s original premiere in 1975, it has garnered a cult following that has led to one of the most outrageous movie screenings one will ever attend. There has become almost a tradition of things that people do during the screenings. This involves dressing up, people acting out the film in front of the screen, doing the time warp, throwing objects, such as toast and rice, at the screen, and numerous ad libbings, many of which would be too inappropriate for school publication though. I got the pleasure of going myself a few weeks ago and it was some of the most fun I have ever had at a movie theater. It is so raunchy and over the top that even the most warped of jokes seem normal, such as what ‘virgins,’ or people who have never been to a screening of “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” are asked to do before the screening begins. These showings are taking place every other Saturday at midnight at the Esquire Theatre. Note that the film is in fact rated R so parental guidance is necessary unless you are 17 or older. Or you could just sneak in, but everyone knows that high school students would NEVER do that. In the words of Dr. Frank-nFurter, “Give yourself over to absolute pleasure.”

[ cover story ] THE LEAF | FRIDAY, SEPT. 26 | SHSLEAF.ORG

Constructing everlasting bonds

Image by Lauren Glynn



Learn how to network Lauren glynn

leaflet editor-in-chief


oday, everything revolves around making connections. As students progress to the next chapter of their life, it is important to keep in mind what really matters. Whether it is graduating from high school, being accepted to a university, or obtaining a college degree, the contacts one obtains are crucial. According to Focalpoint Coaching of Greater Houston, true, genuine, deep-down happiness and inner peace are the hallmarks of mental health. Relationships are not just a

reference for couples; relationships are the interactions between everyone. Relationships are what keep people close, and also the reason for success in this world. In some cases, the only way to get what we want is to have connections and network through the system. Sometimes it takes who you know to get that dream job or college acceptance letter. It is all about who you know. In fact, SHS psychologist Mr. Benjamin Wlliamson sees a positive correlation between the presence of relationships and happiness. “In order to find success in any part of life, whether its job success or

success with being happy, you have to be able to build and maintain good relationships with people,” Williamson said. Fully 85 percent of everyone’s happiness will be determined by relationships with other people. Now, we come to the central theme of this message: It is how well each individual gets along with others, and how well they reciprocate the feelings, that will determine the true level of happiness and satisfaction in life. “Relationships are so vitally important in my opinion to being happy, and being fulfilled,” says Williamson. Maintaining relationships is the true key to success.

‘It’s a very different environment’

Athletes speak on team-bonding

Victoria swart

broadcast editor-in-chief

In sports, there is always an ultimate goal, whether that’s to finish the season without injury, gain a certain skill, or win a championship. What some people may forget, however, are the relationships that are built along the way. After all, work is the only thing that happens on the field, right? No playtime, no relaxation, no “slouching around” these are some ideas people first associate with the word “sports.” In the small moments of a championship game, it can be true that athletes are more focused on the goal to be achieved than their friendships. However, according to coaches, team bonding plays a massive role. “Trust is the biggest key in building a team. Athletes will not believe in the system without it. If they have it with their teammates and coach, then in the heat of competition, they will respond,” football coach, Mr. Hank Ray said.

Athletic relationships are different from school friendships in many aspects, mainly because of the experiences the team goes through together. Failure, victory, pain- all of these can be clearly felt in the athletic world. When teammates go through these highs and lows of a season together, they can understand each other differently than if they were just in school together. “We’ve bonded through all the activities and practices. Cross country is painful, but we do it together. We can complain together, and we can be happy together,” sophomore cross country runner,

Sarah Guckenberger said. Teams often schedule specific events for team-bonding, whether that be pasta parties, team fundraisers, pool days, or other activities. These are simply to get to know other athletes on different levels than on the court, field, or course. “I have good friendships with my teammates, but there’s more to a person than the sport you’re playing. It’s hard to talk about those things when you’re practicing, but there’s always those moments when it’s easy,” freshman football player, Benjamin Swart said.

Photos courtesy of McDaniel’s Photography


Nothing was the same William coleman staff writer

My sister and I have never had the strongest relationship, but there has been a noticeable change since she has left for college. No more driving me around, no more ping pong games, no more anything. It was never really loud in our house. However, being an only child makes everything quiet. Having one less person around makes conversation less common because there are two working adults and one kid who is bored enough that he can do homework without distractions. Nothing great came out of my relationship with my sister. No, we don’t hate each other. But we aren’t siblings who know everything about each other. We just do things like watch TV with each other because the other is simply just there. I think the one thing that we have in common is the ability to obsess over our dog. Back in the summer of 2012, I joked and told her we should make an Instagram for him. Of course I can’t use it because I “don’t know what I’m doing”, but it’s still something I can say that we share It has not even been a month. The past 23 days have been silent without her. I miss arguing over whose better at this and that. I struggle with change making her room down the hall is quieter than it appears.

Did you know?

Close sibling relationships are good for your health A Harvard University study researcher Mark Morman of showed that being close to Baylor University, siblings who one’s siblings at college age maintain close relationships was related to emotional throughout adulthood are less well-being at 65. According to at risk for depression.

Photos courtesy of Jessica Hobart

Q&A with William and

Jessica Hobart, 12 LILA ENGLANDER assignment editor

Q: Childhood stories? W: When we were younger in a doublewide stroller, people would always come up to my mom and look in the stroller and always be really surprised there were two. They would always ask ‘Are they twins? Are they identical?’ And my mom would be like ‘No, this is a girl, this is a boy.’ And they would be like, ‘But they could still be identical!’ J: We don’t have twin telepathy or anything but I know a couple times I’ve stepped on Will’s foot and I’ve said ouch and he said sorry. Q: What’s it like being a twin? W: It’s like having a sibling but knowing the same people. Q: Are you competitive? W: It’s not competitive because we generally both do well. J: With some twins—W: there’s a smart one and a dumb one? J: No. I feel like some are really competitive. I’m really glad that we aren’t competitive about anything. I know Will is good at stuff, but I’m not bitter. Q: Do you enjoy being a twin? W: It’s good because you have someone who is at the same stage of life as you. It’s not as awkward talking to parents and not as much judgment talking to friends. Having someone from your family at school changes how you act.

W: When we started school it was nice to know someone. I’ve never really experienced just being alone. J: For instance we always drive to school together, it would be weird to drive alone. I like having someone there. But I think it would also be cool to be more separate. Q: If you go to different colleges, how do you think that will be? W: I think I would be fine, but we’ve never been apart for that long. J: I think I will miss you. From time to time I’ll feel like, ‘Oh Will would get this.’ Q: Anything unusual in common? J: We’re both really bad with organs and stuff. W: The drug video we watched in eighth grade with all the crazy procedures. I started blacking out. J: That’s kind of weird. Will also says weird stuff, like the most recent one is, ‘swag.’ I start doing it because I’m around you, even though when you first started doing it I was like, ‘stop’ but now I say it. W: Our vocabulary rubs off on each other. Q: Friend overlap? J: When we were younger I would be friends with people and then you would— W: Then I would just become friends with them. That changed in junior high because there were more ways to meet people. Japanese class and Theater introduced me to people I am friends with now.




Ways to interact in our





Partner Say “I love you”

Give hugs Schedule dates Share everything



Friends Say “What’s up”

Eliminate blame and criticism Send texts of appreciation


Give bro taps / hugs Schedule study sessions

Eliminate gossip Send texts to entertain

Share food / clothes


Say “Get out of my room”

Say “Have a nice day”

Give smiles Eliminate negativity Schedule vacations Send texts of support

Give hand shakes

Share health care plans


Eliminate judgement

Schedule meetings Send texts of current events Share ideas Infographic by Anna Zhou

[ fun&games ]

RUJULA KAPOOR fun & games chief


Number Puzzle






x x



= -1



= 9



= 1 N U N R E F G

3 6 9 3

= 29



Word search

= 1



Use every number between 1-9 once and solve the equations so that they work from top to bottom and left to right





9 7 6 2

5 5 4 1 8 7 4 7 5 1 6 1 9 7 8 2 3 9 9 5 4 BEGINNER

3 4 6 7 1 5 2

2 8 2 1

9 6 8 1 4 9

6 5




[ feature ]


creative projects editor


creative projects editor


Homecoming for girls:

1 Have an idea of what you want 2 D e c i d e o n t h e r i g h t l e n g t h a n d c u t fo r t h e d r e s s 3 Pa y a t t e n t i o n t o f a b r i c , c o l o r a n d p a t t e r n 4 M a k e s u re t h e d re s s i s p r a c t i c a l ( s c h o o l a p p r o p r i a t e ) 5 K e e p i n m i n d yo u r p e r s o n a l s t y l e 6 D e t e r m i n e i f t h e d re s s y o u h a v e fo u n d i s t h e r i g h t o n e 7 Fi n i s h o f f yo u r l o o k w i t h m a t c h i n g a c c e s s o r i e s







Homecoming for boys:

1 Co l o r e d b o w t i e 2 Fl o w e r l a p e l p i n o r b o u t o n n i e r e 3 Going without a cummerbond 4 Necktie instead of bow tie 5 Po c k e t s q u a r e 6 Dark grey instead of black







Write each letter of the word “Homecoming” on individual cards or sheets of paper. Once you do that, place them inside multiple balloons and give the balloons to her. Tell her to pop them and see what is inside. Another thing to do is fill her room or car with balloons and write out “homecoming” on the outside of the balloons!


Who doesn’t like pizza? Bring a pizza to her house! On the inside, write out “Will you go to Homecoming with me?” on the box, or spell out the letters HC with pepperoni on the actual pizza. If you want it to be more of a surprise, write it on the bottom of the box and once you have finished the pizza she will see the question!

how to ask a girl

to Homecoming

HC? Use your sport as a way to ask her if she will go with you! During a game or practice, take the time to ask by presenting her with flowers in front of other people, or when you are alone! Get the team in on it to make it more special.

Homecoming Asking doesn’t have to be a huge deal! Write a letter, make a poster, decorate her locker and keep it simple!

If you are feeling especially adventurous, create a treasure hunt! Leave clues, hints, or small little gifts in different locations leading to another location. Once she is gone to multiple places, leave a clue that leads to one last location. At this last place, be there and be ready to ask her the big question: Will you go to homecoming with me? To make it more personal, make a poster asking the question for you or give her a small gift like candy or a stuffed animal to show that you care and that you would really like to go with her.



New Faces

LAUREN SAXON print editor-in-chief

Messages from our SHS staff Mr. Benjamin Williamson School Psychologist - Education: Undergraduate at Wright State University, Master’s Degree and Educational Specialist Degree at University of Dayton

“When I was a senior in high school, I took a psychology class and just really fell in love with the field. I came to SHS from Kings High School where I served as a school psychologist for the past 12 years. I came to Sycamore for its reputation of such a strong school and strong academics. This school district is such a fantastic place and I’m so impressed with all of the supports in place here. I hope that students can really see what a gift it is to go to a school like this; and I hope students really utilize the people and the supports that are in place here for them. My favorite part about working this job above and beyond everything else is helping students who have struggled to do well in school find success.” Image by Lauren Saxon

Mr. Ashwin Corattiyil Dean of Students - Education: New York University in New York City, U.S. Navy for four years after college “I grew up in Cincinnati and attended Sycamore Schools from Kindergarten through 12th grade, graduating from Sycamore High School in 2001. I’d really like to build relationships with our great students, staff, and the Sycamore community. The people involved in this school accomplish so many amazing things, and I want to do what I can to help them achieve even more-both inside and outside the school walls. To me, it feels like coming ‘back’ to SHS. The years I spent in this school were some of the best years of my life; and it excites me to know that I have the chance to help current students and future students feel the same way. I’m here to help you and be a resource for you. If you can’t find me in my office, please leave me a message in my mailbox or on the whiteboard next to my door. Even if it’s just to say hi, I’d love to hear from you.” Image by Lauren Saxon

Dr. Yejide Mack Assistant Principal - Education: Master of Arts degree in Educational Administration, Doctorate Degree in Urban Educational Leadership from the University of Cincinnati in 2010 “My current role as Assistant Principal allows me to utilize current research, outside sources, performance data and feedback from parents, students, teachers and the community to assist in the development of curriculum and instructional programs designed for student success and achievement. From the moment I stepped foot in the district, I felt a welcoming spirit from staff, teachers and parents, as well as the secretarial staff and custodians. My focus will be building Sycamore pride within the building, with staff and students, and strengthening our customer service efforts to the outside community. I will take every opportunity possible to speak on the great students and great staff we have here at Sycamore High School.” Photo supplied by Dr. Yejide Mack


Boys golf teams hit home Taylor CLose


Golf Glossary

staff writer odern day golf has changed much since it began in the days of Julius Cesar. The game used to be played with a clubshaped tree branch and a featherstuffed ball. The game is now played with light-weight clubs and smaller balls that travel faster and further. The varsity team has had an exciting season with road trips and various tournaments. “Some of the highlights would have to be Alan Carr’s double eagle and Ryan Wessinger’s hole in one,” sophomore Stephen Coleman said. All three teams have had great seasons that are either coming to an end soon or already have. “I shot under 80 and had three birdies in a nine hole match,” Coleman said. The scoring system in golf is unique with terms like par and eagle. These are all just ways to say how many hits it takes to get the ball into the hole based on par, the number of shots a great player should need to complete a hole. All three teams enjoyed the company of each other on and off the field. “Playing on the golf course and getting to know the other players was very fun,” sophomore Jannan Sivaruban said.

par - the number of strokes a good golfer is expected to take to finish a golf hole or course birdie - a score of one stroke under par at a hole eagle - a score of two strokes under par at a hole

Photos courtesy of McDaniel’s Photography

The athletes are beginning to reflect as all three teams will soon or have already finished their seasons. “The Varsity A team had a very great season with some very impressive scores. The biggest highlight was definitely getting to go to Columbus for some big tournaments and returning with great scores,” sophomore Alex Jones said.



Water polo welcomes new season, coaches, traditions

Treading to victory

Sarah horne staff writer

Hannah May news chief


ust before the beginning of the 2014 season, head girls coach Gary Tameris informed his players of his official resignation. Tameris opted to take a job offer at Princeton High School as the head coach for the boys water polo team. Tameris had already been coaching the Princeton girls and boys swimming team and he will continue to coach them as well as the water polo team. His daughter is currently the coach of their girls water polo team. The team also said goodbye to assistant coaches Paul Splitt and AJ Sofio. Splitt is now focusing his attention on his teaching career at Montgomery Elementary as well as working with Moose, a club water polo team. Sofio transferred to Mason and is now the head girls coach. After searching, SHS hired coaches Michael Spraul and Jessen Link as new coaches for both the girls and boys team. Coach Nicholas Hellwig who has been the boys head coach for six years is in charge of both the boys and girls teams. In the past, practices were two hours long. The new coaches implemented three hour practices where two hours were working in the pool and one hour was conditioning. Running was also a large part of the training regime. “Doing dry land (conditioning) was really difficult but I feel like it will help in the long run. Last year we didn’t do it and I feel like our team has had more endurance this year,” junior Jory Gould said.

Both the boys and girls water polo teams have been hard at work this season. The boys team has played in multiple close matches this season, such as their 5-6 loss to St. Xavier during the Mason Invitational. The girls team is trying to avenge two straight losses in the State Championship. Photos courtesy of McDaniel’s Photography

New road to state Along with those changes, the way that the Regional and State tournaments are being run is different from last year. Instead of the top four teams from the Regional tournament moving on to the State tournament, all of the teams in Ohio will participate in the State tournament. This means that the State tournament will take place all in one weekend rather than two, shortening the girls season by one week. The boys State tournament will work the same way, however it will be held one week after the girls rather than the same weekend like it

has been in the past. There will be multiple sites that the tournament games will take place at. Previously it has all been held at Mason High School. With these changes, the teams will have to adjust. However they are looking forward to the rest of the season and are hoping to make it far in the state tournament. “We were struggling at the beginning of the season, but at the State tournament I’m hoping that we will show up and beat some of the better Ohio teams,” senior Jennifer Weber said.

All photos courtesy of McDaniel’s Photography


Cross Country runs together Sydney Evans

joints in the legs, causing injuries. “Our injuries aren’t the same as staff writer football or soccer. We have minor TORI SWART injuries that turn into big ones, like broadcast editor-in-chief shin splints that turn into stress fractures or torn ligaments,” girls he Cross Country teams coach, Mr. Greg Pottebaum said. started training days after Injury prevention is an integral school ended. The athletes part of everyday practice. Athletes ran together almost every run a half-mile and do dynamic day during the summer. stretches as a warm-up before each On Fridays, both Cross Country work out. After the runs, the team teams get together eating their fill do strengthening exercises and use of pasta and challenging the other foam rollers to loosen muscles. team to games such as football. “With running, sometimes “I think it shows unity as a whole ‘playing through the pain’ can be a Cross Country team, bad thing,” Pottebaum it’s a great way to be “We’re education said. more connected. I like our athletes on how The same awareness the idea of combined comes with nutrition. pasta parties,” senior to be a runner and Dehydration can be a Adam Lucken said. be fit not just now, threat when athletes The teams wake up don’t take in enough together every Friday but for the rest water during the day. at 5 a.m. and practice of their lives, and Food intake is also before school starts. how to treat their important; athletes The seniors on the burn around 700 bodies properly” girls team drive up calories on a normal to Panera and get the -Mr. Greg Pottebaum running day, and at team bagels. least 1000 on a hard “I’m not a huge fan of waking workout day. They also lose salt and up early but the bagels from the electrolytes through their sweat, seniors help between school and which decreases their energy stores. practice," sophomore, Allison Injuries have not totally Flavin said. disappeared, but coaches have seen Injuries the stretches and drills helping with No matter what sport, learning the overall team’s health. how to deal with injuries are a basic “Injuries are demoralizing, but lesson in an athlete’s life. we’re always going to have them. This is especially true in cross Our goal is to reduce the amount, country, where athletes run six days the duration of the injury, and the a week. Running is “high impact” impact of the injury on the athlete,” training, which jolts muscles and Pottebaum said.



[ column ] LAUREN KURTZER feature chief

Keeping up with Kurtzer No more Chad Johnson, Terrell Owens and Adam Jones sagas of arrests and drama. The Cincinnati Bengals of today are in the headlines for a good reason; they put defensive lineman Devon Still on their practice squad after releasing him. Yes, this happens before every NFL season starts but this time it was special; Still’s four year old daughter, Leah Still has cancer. With his circumstance he was not “100 percent emotionally there,” Bengals player, Still said in an interview with multiple national media outlets including Good Morning America and ESPN SportsCenter. The Bengals—who drafted him in 2010—kept him to pay for medical bills that could reach $1 million. Forget the Lombardi Trophy, this team—our local team—deserves something past that, although one would be nice. In a league filled with concussion lawsuits, domestic violence, substance abuse and PED’s, the Bengals shed light on one of the worst times in NFL history. The Bengals stand out in their division, the AFC North that was once one of the highest respected divisions. The team once notorious for having troubled players is no more. They are following the low-key New England Patriots, Denver Broncos, and Green Bay Packers and so on along with the stability of 11 year coach Marvin Lewis. They were able to do something so simple yet life-changing. With that I applaud the Cincinnati Bengals for being a team I am proud to root for, to call my hometown team and to look beyond the game. Thank you Devon for showing us what true strength is. May Leah have a fast and speedy recovery so both of you can be 100 percent, physically, mentally and emotionally.



Swinging for state Girls tennis team has high hopes for season Jack Loon

staff writer

Leah wallihan

staff writer


fter a full season last year with no official home courts, girls tennis finally has their chance to play on the new SHS courts. The A team has started off with a dominant 14-2 win/ loss record, and aims to give SHS a second team state title in 2014. It would mean so much to them to win state this year: “We have big goals for the season and for the post-season and it would mean everything to us if we could win a

state title like the boys did,” senior Sneha Rajagopal said. Rajagopal is one of the captains leading the team along with senior Jamie Pescovitz. Varsity B has also enjoyed a successful season. Losing only to Mason, Ursuline, and Turpin they have lost three matches. Therefore, they are a major contender to win the Sycamore Cup. “Winning the Sycamore Cup would be amazing for our team, especially since the boys team won it earlier in the year,” freshman Madi Ringer said. She went on to say that she believes that they are one of the favorites to win the Cup this year.

Like the other two teams, JV has only lost two matches. They have won eight, and are a major contender to win the GCTCA Coaches Classic tournament at the end of the season. JV also placed fourth in the Centerville Doubles Tournament. They hope to continue their winning ways against rivals Mason and Ursuline later this season. “We have been preparing since day one. We will continue working on all the little things: eliminating errors, increasing our aggressiveness, and hopefully getting healthier,” Coach Mike Teets said.

Juniors Josephine Fernandez (far left), Alexa Abele (below) and freshman Emily Reddy (left) have all been working hard on the court this season. “We have been preparing since day one. We will continue working on all the little things,” Coach Mike Teets said.

Photos courtesy of McDaniel’s Photography


opinion chief

Seventh Inning Stretch Last week was the worst in the National Football League. Ray Rice, Adrian Peterson, and Commissioner Roger Goodell helped create a week that formed a perfect storm. Domestic violence has been the topic in the NFL for the past few weeks. San Francisco lineman Ray McDonald and Carolina lineman Greg Hardy are both playing while under investigation for crimes. Peterson was only out one game before the Minnesota Vikings reinstated him, much to the dismay of ESPN reporter Keith Olbermann. The Vikings later placed Peterson on the inactive list, but not before sponsors threatened to pull their sponsorships. ESPN analyst Stephen A. Smith, usually one of my favorite TV personalities shared his view of how, “women should not do anything to provoke the man to abuse them.” Smith was suspended a week for his actions. Olbermann ranted on about the crimes that Peterson committed. So ESPN has not been very uniform with their opinions, which is a problem. There have been many problems with the way Goodell has acted recently. It is amazing how the NFL, a trillion dollar business, cannot request to see a video from a casino, which has cameras in every square inch of the place. Something needs to be done. I do not think that Goodell should be ousted, because he has done everything he could to admit and make up for his mistake. Stop worrying about the money and start worrying about the welfare of the league, or the popularity of the league is going to go down the drain.

[ spotlight ]



i practices precision, power and poise earns techniques and tips to be the best

BROOKE LANDRUM spotlight chief


urning play into passion into power, sophomore Jesse Li has firsthand experience in this quest from innocent intrigue to a desire for greatness. Fencing has been a part of Li’s life since he was 10 years old. He began his training at a local athletic club. His new teacher began on the basics and Li knew that he was hooked. “I mean it was swords so it was already cool, but I just really ended up developing a passion,” Li said. Two years later Li entered his first competition. He won a DE, direct elimination, belt in his first match. It was revealed to him by his instructor that it typically takes many years for a competitor to compete at that level. “One thing I really like is when I lose to someone because they had a skill that I didn’t and I can master that skill and then beat them with it the next time we compete,” Li said. Since then Li has competed in four more competitions and experienced both wins and losses. In lieu of doing more competitions, Li has dedicated more time to training. He has been able to master two fencing techniques,épée and foil. “I decided to focus more on training than doing competitions because with more training I can guarantee myself to place more when I do compete,” Li said.


One difference between épée and foil is the tips of the sword are a different shape. In addition the weight of a foil sword is less than one pound while an épée sword weighs 27 ounces. The hardest part of moving from épée to foil was breaking the habits he had developed from his study with épée. The other difference is the narrowing of the target range and specific to Li, trying not to hit his opponent’s hands. “One thing I really had to work on was point control, which is hitting the same point multiple times in a row,” Li said. In order to keep himself in shape all year round Li participates in many other school sports. Li also runs cross country and plays tennis. He prefers to play doubles but also plays singles when necessary. “I do other sports to keep in physical shape so that I can focus on technique and form during my fencing practices,” Li said. In the past 10 years Li has developed a strong passion for fencing, claiming that it has allowed him to meet people he would not have otherwise met. He hopes to continue fencing for as long “as long as he can stay standing.”

Target Area

Target Area




When not participating in one of his three sports, Li volunteers at a veteran’s affairs hospital. In the future he hopes to have a medical profession. He is particularly interested in surgery or orthopedics. Photo courtesy of Jesse Li


THE LEAFLET volume 2 issue 2 sept. 12, 2014