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Liberty High School

Volume 94, Issue 4

December 19, 2017

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When you stop by the LMC this December for the usual Nest pick-meup or to print an assignment, pause for a moment and look for a special guest who’s making an appearance for the second year in a row. The Elf on the Shelf tradition not only reigns at people’s homes but was introduced to the LMC last year. When discussing how to name her, Library Media Specialists Lori Riedel and Chris Anderson researched literary names and landed on the name “Scout,” the main character from the classic To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Anytime a student finds Scout’s spot in the library, they will be entered into a

drawing for a free drink at the Nest. Just tweet a picture of Scout with the hastag #ifoundscout and tag the LMC’s Twitter handle: @360LMC. This game isn’t just for students. Staff members can also participate in the Christmas tradition. Science teacher Kara Giesert even made a new skirt by hand for Scout’s wardrobe last Christmas season. The LMC is also hosting many games and activities for the holiday season, including books covered in wrapping paper so that students can “unwrap their next read, because each book is a gift.” Make sure to stop by the LMC this holiday season for a little fun!

STAFF Editor-in-Chief: Riley Kelley Managing Editor: Jenna Spence Ads Manager and Cartoonist: Daryl Gichui Design Editor: Teegan Saunders News/InDepth/Copy Editor: Joey O’Kelly Features/InDepth/Copy Editor: Paige Twenter A&E Editor: Delaney Tarpley Spotlight Editor: Haley Stephenson Opinion Editor: Grace Buehler Sports Editor: Marcus Myvett News/InDepth/Assistant Copy Editor: Zahra Khan Spotlight Assistant Editor: Caroline Parry Reporters: Ashley Tindall Aaron Jones Alyah Craig Rylee Berry Regan Johnston Celeste Lehnardt Liz Gammon

02 TOC December 19, 2017

Photo by Kaleigh McCarthy

MISSION PhotoJ Managing Editor: Chrystian Noble Assistant Managing Editors: Mara Fryer Ashley Ritter Mercedes Peck Photographers: Jenna Axsom Connor Callahan Morgan Clark Katelynn Dale Emily Dare Peyton Fehl Hayden Graham Alyssa Griffith McKenna Hegger Kate Marshall Kaleigh McCarthy Charlene Nguyen

Our mission for the 2017-2018 school year is to unite a diverse group of people and ideas to compose an informative and entertaining magazine using articles, photographs and commercial messages. As journalists in training we endeavor to give the best representation of the community of Liberty High School. The Bell student newspaper is a public forum for student expression. The articles featured do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the entire Bell staff. Please feel free to commnent, compliment or criticize anything you see in this issue in a Letter to the Editor at

CONTACT Liberty High School Address: 200 Blue Jay Drive Liberty, MO 64068 Phone: (816)-736-2827

Email: OR Twitter: @TheLHSBell

On the cover: The low brass Christmas musicians performed at Kauffman Center for Performing Arts in downtown Kansas City on December 4, 2017.

Cover photo courtesy of Connor Callahan

THIS MONTH’S HEADLINES Sounds of the Season Page 6

Jazzy Jays Page 8

A Whole New World Page 9

Photo by Charlene Nguyen

Merry Skit-Mas Page 10

Photo by Connor Callahan

Harrison Walker Page 12 Cassidy Meyer Page 13 Tyler Bolz Page 14 Marissa Williams Page 15 Photo by Grace Buehler

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Happy HoliJays Page 18 Editor’s Columns Page 20 Staff Editorial Page 22 Jabber Page 23 Photo by Jenna Axsom

A Very KC Christmas Page 24

Photo by Kaleigh McCarthy

Sports Calendar Page 27 What’s Hot? Page 28 Fun and Games Page 30


Photo by Emily Dare

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Young And Wrestless Page 26


Photo by Chrystian Noble

Photo by Stephanie Steffensmeier

Heritage Middle School was renamed Tim Nixon Middle School in memory of LHS’ late Cross Country coach on Monday December 4. The school will remain Tim Nixon Middle School until winter break. Men’s tennis coach Andy Schneider, who teaches at Heritage Middle School, advertised the new Tim Nixon Middle School t-shirts, which depict a pair of running shoes as the school’s temporary logo. These shirts can be purchased for $10 each with all proceeds going to the Tim Nixon Memorial Scholarship Fund. Order one of these shirts at

In Memory of Tim Nixon

April 9, 1954 November 27, 2017

LETTER FROM THE EDITOR At the beginning of this month, the staff put their heads together and thought about the topic of this month’s InDepth story: the holidays. We were looking for something that is often overlooked in the midst of the season when someone mentioned the blue Christmas trees in the atrium. At that moment, we knew we had something. I realized then that I have never seen schoolwide decorations that depicted anything other than a Christmas tree, a star, or some twinkling lights. Santa hats are everywhere and decorated Blue Jays are on all of our posters during December. I’ve never seen any decorations related to Hanukkah or Kwanzaa. If there are any other holidays celebrated during December, I am completely unaware of them. This is an issue. I felt a great sense of guilt knowing there are students, teachers

and staff members who celebrate holidays that I know next to nothing about. I tried to put myself in their shoes and wonder how it might feel to not be represented. I believe the school’s Administrative team does an outstanding job of welcoming and supporting people from all walks of life into our building. However, I think it is an issue that we, as a student body, aren’t informed enough about all of the holidays occurring during the winter season. We should have curious minds, asking questions and teaching each other that there are more holidays out there than Christmas. We have investigated these other holidays and hope that, like us, with open minds and hearts, you will learn about other holidays we can add to our schoolwide celebration. No matter what you do or don’t celebrate, Happy Holidays from The Bell staff!

Letter From the Editor December 19, 2017

Photo by Morgan Clark



A look into what LHS’s fine arts program is doing in the month of December.

Story by Alyah Craig and Zahra Kahn Clear the stage for the musicians of LHS. December is the season for orchestra, band and choir to perform some of their most celebratory music.


Orchestra has been preparing for the many events that they hold during the most wonderful time of the year. The orchestra performed at the Liberty Performing Arts Theatre for some holiday fun on December 5. “All the orchestras played. That includes the 8th graders, Freshman, Concert, Symphonic and Chamber orchestra,” senior cellist Ian Watson said. “Everyone played their own little piece then we all came together to play one.” First the eighth graders, Freshman and Chamber performed followed by Symphonic and Concert orchestra. A hat was passed around during the concert for fundraising. “We collected money from audience members and for every dollar we got we played one measure of Christmas


Photo by Chrystian Noble

Eve/Sarajevo for them. The money went towards our boosters, which are used for scholarships, travel, instrumental rental, field trips, senior gifts and much more.” orchestra teacher Michelle Davis said. Another event orchestra got to be apart of this year was Sounds of the Holiday for KSHB-TV news station. “The Symphonic orchestra went to Johnson County Community college to play holiday music and get recorded for KSHB Sounds of the Holiday. They live broadcast it on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day,” junior violinist Amanda Floray said. Students from Symphonic orchestra played holiday tunes, including Lullaby Christmas and movements from the Nutcracker.


Ya like jazz? And LHS Band? This December, the band is set to play for several winter events. This month, the jazz band performed during lunch for students and teachers. They performed “Groove

Merchant,” “A Nasty Bit of Blues,” “Baby it’s Cold Outside” and more holiday themed classics to get everyone in the holiday spirit. Also, the Concert and Symphonic groups performed at the Liberty Performing Arts Theatre at 7 P.M. on December 12 for an event open to the community. “The concert highlighted pieces the band has been working on for the past month or so,” sophomore clarinet player Evan Moody said. “Each band had about four to five pieces that they had been working on and showcased. This definitely gave players an opportunity to perform to the community and our school.” sophomore clarinet player Evan Moody said. Like any other performance, a lot of work was required for the concert. “There’s been a lot of practice that’s gone into it, just making sure that all the music is as good as it can be. A lot of repetition on the pieces is the main thing we do,” freshman percussionist Grant Owen said.

Left: Senior Sarah Noble prepares for their orchestra concert on December 5. Right: Junior William Laycock, senior Ian Watson, sophomore Emily Reynolds, senior Benja Albornoz-Cabezas and senior Jack Fulkerson have built a strong bond through their work in orchestra.

News December 19, 2017

A unique event for some band students was Tuba Christmas. Tuba and euphonium players performed holiday tunes at the Kauffman Center in downtown Kansas City. It was open to the community and was held on December 4. Band teacher Eddie Owen believes music holds significant life lessons for students. “One of my favorite sayings that I heard and still apply today is that we don’t use students to make great music, we use music to make great students,” he said. “We want students in our program to be better human beings. We carry this though marching band and concert season.”


The end of the year is a showcase for the hard work and dedication of the choirs. Choir teacher Rika Heruth described some of the special events that happened for LHS singers. “Our Chamber Choir is working with a Grammy Award Winning professional choir on December 4,” Heruth said. “They are getting ready to perform for the Missouri Music Educators Association convention in January. The singers from VOCES 8 coached us in a workshop

on a piece we will be singing at this convention.” On December 11, Women’s and Men’s Chorale, alongside Blue Jay Chamber and Concert Choir performed at William Jewell. Since this is one of their bigger holiday concerts, the pieces selected were more challenging and spotlighted the talent. Junior Katherine Vlamis worked to memorize the songs before the concerts. “I decided to participate in choir because it’s something that I want to do in the future as well and I think that there’s a lot to learn from music,” Vlamis said. “You basically just need to have a passion for learning music. I’ve mostly just practiced outside of school and obviously try work in class as well.” Junior Jake Kane participated in the previous choir concerts. Some pieces were based off of religious matters, others were for seasonal enjoyment and the act of spreading holiday joy throughout the community. “Music is just something that shapes the world around us, so any opportunity for people to go see some sort of music whether it be choir, orchestra or band is something that makes the world happier,” Kane said.

Congratulations to All-State musicians and vocalists! - Sophomore Katie Martin, bassoon - Junior Jacob Fullinwider, percussion - Senior Natalie Juno, violin - Senior Zoe Moody, viola - Senior Ben Tervort, bass - Senior Molly Day - Senior Campbell Everly - Junior Aubrey Peterson

Photos by Connor Callahan and McKenna Hegger Top Left: Tuba and euphonium players united to have a holiday music performance. Top Right: Choir teacher Baker Purdon works to make sure the choirs are ready for the concert on December 11. Right: Seventh hour Liberty Chorale practices during seventh hour.

News December 19, 2017



The Sapphires are working hard as this year’s competition season approaches. Story by Liz Gammon

Photo by Chrystian Noble

The Sapphires competed at their first competition on Saturday, Decemebr 9 for KC Classic here at LHS.

There are thousands of things to think about on the stage as the lights hit and the music starts. Applause perfectly completes months of hard work portrayed in just a few minutes. Though other sports may have ended, the Sapphires’ work is just beginning. Right now the Sapphires are practicing for the KC Classic, regionals at Lee Summit North, nationals in Orlando and the Missouri State Dance Team Championships at Saint Charles. “The KC Classic is one of the fundraisers we do for the Sapphires,” freshman Natalia Knoke said. “It’s a competition where other dance teams like Lee Summit North and Lee Summit West all can come here and compete. It also kind of acts as the opening to the entire competition season.” Both varsity and junior varsity teams have been helping organize, set up and run the event for these teams. They are expecting 48 different dance teams to attend the KC Classic this year on December 9.

08 News December 19, 2017

The Sapphires have been constantly working for these upcoming events by drilling different tricks and turns during each practice to make sure they are perfect. “We try to choose the toughest competitions to prepare us for nationals so we can do the best we can,” senior Annie Pottios said. The varsity Sapphires have practices three times a week that range from two to three hours. “Practices are pretty intense,” Pottios said. “We utilize our time really well and get a lot done. We had a solid practice where our coaches said they really see our dances coming together which really helped our confidence. I still think we could work even harder though, so we can do the absolute best we can.” Though these ladies are anxious to see their hard work pay off, they are also excited for the experience and to see other teams flaunt their hard work. “The reason the competitions are so special, to me at least, is because they’re so big and there are so many teams,” junior Brynn Baymiller said. “It’s a lot

different than other sports. In other sports the opposing teams kind of hate each other but dance is a lot more supportive in my experience. We’ll go and watch other teams and cheer them on. We’re competitive in the sense that we want to do good but were not overly competitive against other people.” The national in early February is a huge focus for the varsity Sapphires and they are already practicing for it. Last year they came in eighth place and this year they hope to make it into the top five. “Each dancer has a goal to individually improve from the practice the day before,” coach Maggie Willis said. “They are working hard each and every day and we are very proud of their strong work ethic and drive.”


Foreign Exchange student Noemi Di Bitonto adapts to a new culture at LHS. Story by Delaney Tarpley

Photo by Jenna Axsom volleyball club team and is planning on trying out for soccer in the spring, but joining the tennis team in fall is what helped her gain some of her new American friends.

For senior Noemi Di Bitonto, coming to America has made her feel like a T.V. star. “All the T.V. shows that we watch in Italy are made by American actors and American people, so they represent American life,” Di Bitonto said. “Since coming here, I feel like I’m on a T.V. show because I’m doing some of the same things my favorite characters are.” Since coming to the United States in early August, Di Bitonto has learned more about the language than she thought she would. “I decided to come here to learn the language because I want to go to college here,” Di Bitonto said. “I have learned a lot more about the language. I’ve improved a lot with my English speaking.” However, Italian and English are not the only languages that Di Bitonto knows. Spanish is a special skill of hers and her skills have even impressed spanish teacher Astrid Ruiz. “Having Noemi in class is so fun,” Ruiz said. “She brings a lot of diversity to the classroom. She speaks very good Spanish even though she was not even taking Spanish classes back in Italy. Italian is in the same [language] family as Spanish. The only time we have any trouble is actually when I’m speaking English. She asks for clarification from her friends who help her out a lot. She uses a translator sometimes.” Di Bitonto has wasted no time getting involved in all the activities LHS has to offer. She’s currently playing on a

Features December 19, 2017

“She joined the tennis team and I wanted to make sure I included her,” sophomore Jillian Axsom said. “I wanted her to have a good experience with tennis, so we became good friends through that.” Through Di Bitonto, Axsom has learned about a lot of the different culture aspects between America and Italy. Specifically, school has been a major difference in Di Bitonto’s life that she has shared with Axsom.

“From what I’ve heard, their school is much stricter than ours,” Axsom said. “If they have their phone out they get in really big trouble. They also have school for only four to five hours a day.” Di Bitonto thinks that because of some of the differences in the Italian school system, she is closer with her classmates back home than LHS classmates are with each other. “In our school [back in Italy], the teachers change classrooms, not the students,” Di Bitonto said. “We stay in the same class with the same people all day, so we become closer with our classmates.” Di Bitonto has enjoyed spending her time in America so far, but the arrival of the holiday season has opened the door to an abundance of new opportunities and experiences. Through the start of winter, Di Bitonto has gained a new favorite hobby that was previously inaccessible to her. “There are a lot of fun things to do here, such as ice skating,” Di Bitonto said. “We don’t really have ice skating where I live because it doesn’t get as cold.” Not only has Noemi improved in her language skills and learned about some of the cultural differences, but it also excited about how she has learned to be a more open and outgoing person. “I think that people are more close here than what I expected,” Di Bitonto said. “Everyone is friends because they’ve known each other throughout elementary school, middle school and high school. It can be difficult for new people trying to make friends. I’ve learned how to be more outgoing and talk to people more easily. Before coming here, I didn’t talk as much.”



Exit 1-6 members reveal their talent for humorous improv.

Story by Marcus Myvett

Photos by Mercedes Peck and Chrystian Noble

The musicals and plays aren’t the only shows going on at LHS. An improv group, Exit 1-6, also display their skills on stage almost every last Thursday of each month. Exit 1-6 was founded about 20 years ago and the current sponsor, ELA teacher Chuck Zavos, has been the sponsor for two years. “Exit 1-6 is really about how to entertain and show the power of improv,” Zavos said. “It’s a craft that is applicable to all careers, the ability to work in a group and think on your feet. Students also do this to raise money to attend improv shows in Chicago in the spring.” No club can be started just by a sponsor, but it must have committed students. The eight members, including Junior Zach


Moorefield, love it. “My favorite thing about Exit 1-6 is probably that you can just be yourself, and if that doesn’t work, you can be someone else,” Moorefield said. “It’s really easy for me to be either of those things and I have a really fun time doing it.” Moorefield said it’s a good way for him to use all his energy, which relieves stress. Sophomore Fiona Burroughs is the only underclassman on Exit 1-6 and she really enjoys the games they play. “I really like Forward and Reverse,” Burroughs said. “It’s where a scene is happening and whoever is running the game decides when they want the scene to keep going or reverse, so you have to remember everything you said.”

Both Moorefield and Burroughs are in their first year of Exit 1-6. They said the audition process was stressful, but worth it in the end. “I was really nervous because there were times where I realized that I was way too stressed out because of this and I should just be myself.” Moorefield said. “They had us do small improv things, like warmups for the first night,” Burroughs said. “The second night we did actual games to see how we would interact with other people.” This year marks Troy Savaiano’s third year with Exit 1-6 but he said he’s not getting tired of it any time soon. “My favorite thing about Exit 1-6 is probably the family atmosphere we have

Seniors Amos Mwaura and Kate Turnage welcome newcomers junior Zach Moorefield, junior Jake Kane, senior Nolan Burroughs, sophomore Fiona Burroughs and junior Nathan Moon. The troupe was told to do a normal photo...

Features December 19, 2017

with each other,” Savaiano said. “I love the people in the club. I look forward to going to the practices and doing the shows because I get to perform with people I enjoy being around.” Zavos said that even though it’s a lot of work, he still enjoys being the sponsor. “They all bring their own strengths,” Zavos said. “Some are applicable in the show and some help out to prep for shows. It’s a fun thing to watch them grow as performers and work with each other to create.” There is one specific memory of working with the club that stands out to Zavos. “One of my favorite memories from last year’s crew was going to Chicago and having one member being a smart aleck during the show. The improv troupe pulled him up on stage and he finished the show with them. It was great fun for all of us.” Not only is Zavos grateful for the club, so is sophomore Michayla Johnston. She said she loves how crazy it gets and that the different skits they do are really funny. “Whenever you go watch them, you don’t know what to expect,” Johnson said. “They always keep you on your toes.” All three Exit 1-6 members encourage the student body to come to their next show. The theme will be an Alumni show, where past members of Exit 1-6 will come and perform skits with current members. The show will be tonight at 7:00 in the Little Theater.

The infamous Alumni Show is tonight! It’s the last show of the semester and costs only $5. Be at the Little Theater doors by 7:00 p.m.

Top middle: Moon, Nolan and Turnage imitate a typical sorority pose. Top right: Kane, Moon and Burroughs joke with another on and off the stage. Bottom left: The Burroughs are the only siblings in the troupe. Bottom right: Exit 1-6 members consider one another family members.

Features December 19, 2017


Freshman MaryKate Heller’s thoughts: “What I like about Marissa is that she’s very kind and helpful to others. She’s always there when you’re upset and she likes to encourage you.”

Geometry teacher Sandra Ragan’s thoughts: “Marissa is a friendly, upbeat young lady. As a student, she excels and is a terrific role model for her peers. I am honored to get to know her as a student.”


Freshman Marissa Williams describes her life in cheer and school.

Story by Regan Johnston Two, four, six, eight, here’s a cheerleader students can appreciate. Freshman Marissa Williams faces the challenges of high school head on while also making time to do the things she loves. “I like to tumble a lot and hang out with my friends,” Williams said. Entering tryouts as a freshman, she immediately joined the varsity cheerleading squad, and has stayed with them ever since. “They’re all a big family and it’s fun to be a part of,” she said. “I enjoy going to all the games,” Williams said.


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Photos by Grace Buehler and Alyssa Griffith Along with her school and cheer life, Williams is has already discovered an interest in math. “I really like math, I like anything that involves math,” Williams said. “I like that there’s always a reason for your answer, there’s always something to back it up.” Williams also has a positive outlook on high school as a whole. She has managed to help her squad win the cheerleading state championship for the ninth year in a row. “It felt great just to know that we could keep it going for that many years and that I was a part of that,” Williams said. “I like how we’ve all become really close and

they can become your best friends.” When she’s not at school or cheer, she’s spending time with the people she cares about. “I enjoy hanging out with my friends,” Williams said. “Most of the time we stay at someone’s house and sleepover. We also like to hang out and jump on the trampoline, it’s a lot of fun.” Above all else, she values honesty. She is willing to say what needs to be said for the good of her friends. “I like how I can be honest with others even if it’s tough,” Williams said. “I think it helps.”

World History teacher Paul Turner‘s thoughts: “I like how Tyler always brings something to add to the classroom discussion. Tyler is the type of kid anyone would want as a son. He is extremely bright, courteous, and just a good kid.”

Sophomore Colby Kelley’s thoughts:

“He is one of my best friends and is like a

brother to me. He is friendly, outgoing and positive. He always makes everyone feel better.”


Sophomore Tyler Bolz discusses what makes up his personality.

Story by Caroline Parry

Photo by Morgan Clark, Mercedes Peck and Peyton Fehl

Goofy, friendly, smart and outgoing is how Tyler Bolz would describe the way he is around his friends. Bolz can be passionate about many things like his friends and sports. “I’m involved in cross country and track,” Bolz said. “But I’m also a big supporter for all of my friends in the sports world and all my friends who are in fine arts.” Moving to Kansas City also strengthened two of his other passions: food and people. “There are just a lot of great people here and there are a lot of great restaurants,” Bolz said. “My favorite restaurant is Buffalo Wild Wings.” He moved to Liberty during the summer before freshman year and immediately joined the cross country team. Formerly

Spotlight December 19, 2017

from Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin, he became a runner when he couldn’t decide which sport to join. “In Wisconsin, we had a football team and the football team didn’t have enough players, so I joined the cross-country team and it turned out that I started to enjoy it and I got into it,” Bolz said. When Bolz came to Liberty, he decided to join the cross-country team because he was new to town and wanted to make some friends. He was already familiar with it and enjoys running. The cross-country team has changed him as a person and made him who he is today. LHS made it feel like he had a second family. “I think it has changed me because we are like a family and we get really close,” Bolz said. “Even though sometimes I

spend too much time with these guys, at the end of the day you get attached to them like Coach Nixon and you get a little companion.” Since he has been here for two years, there have been other people besides his cross-country team members who have made an impact on him. “I was really inspired by my history teacher Mr. Turner because he is a great guy,” Bolz said. “He has served our country and he has served us in education and he cares for you as a person. I was also inspired by Coach Nixon because he cared about you as a person. My American History teacher Mr. Loomis also inspired me because he is just a rock star.”


Junior Daisy Wood’s thoughts: “My favorite memory with Cassidy is during the marching band season I also enjoy spending time with her at competition. Cassidy is also the funniest person I know.”

ELA teacher Jessica Cordonier’s thoughts: “One of my favorite memories with Cassidy was at a recent assembly. She is the drum major, and was leading the band from the bleachers. It was so fun to watch her in the leadership role.”


Junior Cassidy Meyer is part of band and Medical Leaaders of Tomorrow.

Story by Rylee Berry

Photos by Mara Fryer and Morgan Clark

Junior Cassidy Meyer enjoys helping others. She thinks a career in a medical field will be a great way to do that. She is in the Medical Leaders of Tomorrow club, which meets the first Friday of every month. She loves to learn about the medical field. “You can learn a lot of interesting facts about health careers in that club,” Meyer said. One of her favorite classes is biology. She is especially interested in nursing or physical therapy. “I started to want to become a nurse because I visit my mom at her work,” she said. “I visit her at Liberty Clinic because it looks like something I would love doing.” Not only is she considering


Spotlight Decmeber 19, 2017

becoming a nurse because of her mom, but her mom is also a really important person in her life. “My role model is my mom,” she said. “She never gives up and she is a hard worker. She has really inspired me by being a caring person.” Meyer’s desire to help others extends to students too. She never excludes anyone from anything. “If someone is sitting alone at lunch she will have them come over and sit with us,” junior Daisy Wood said. “She is really nice to everyone.” Junior Kerrisa Myvett agrees. “She’s kind and sweet and funny and she would never hurt anyone. She’s an amazing person and I’m lucky to have her as a friend,” she said.

Meyer also enjoys a couple different roles in band. She plays the flute in band and loves to practice after school. “I like making music with the band,” Meyer said. “I love being a part of the band family.” She is also in Marching Band and is a Drum Major. “Some of my favorite memories with Cassidy are from marching band season,” junior Daisy Wood said. “She is definitely the funniest person I know. She walks into a room and everyone is like, ‘Oh Cassidy!’” Outside of school, Cassidy loves to go shopping with her friends. She loves to make people laugh and is always laughing with someone.

Teacher Kara Geisert’s thoughts: “He’s an awesome kid, very fun to have in class. I love his taste of eighties heavy metal bands. He’s a good student, and he’s a really nice kid. He’s a smart student and I enjoy having him in one of my classes.”

Senior Cooper Nofsinger’s thoughts: “Harrison’s been my best friend for a while, he and I have gone way back. You can turn to him whenever you need something. He’s a funny dude, It’s just always fun being around him and he’s just one of those guys that you know will be there for you.”


Senior Harrison Walker discusses Link Crew and his business.

Story by Celeste Lehnardt Senior Harrison Walker lives every day to help people. He says it’s his greatest passion. Many of his activities inside and out of school focus on helping people. “I joined Link to help out the freshman. When I was a freshman Link really helped me get connected to people and become part of the school,” Walker said. Walker has enjoyed being in Link and helping the freshman. He has fun setting up and running activities and talking to the freshman in his class. Walker appreciates the service he’s able to be a part of through his involvement in Student Council. “In StuCo we help set up dances and highway clean up,” Walker said. “We also do a lot of major events in the school.” In addition to serving in the school, Walker actively engages in service

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Photo by Katelynn Dale and Grace Buehler opportunities in other communities. “I go on a lot of mission trips to South Dakota,” Walker said. “We help build homes on Native American reservations. We do community service and food drives and some other stuff.” Back at home, Walker plays basketball for LHS. He loves the sport and also plays it in his free time with his friends. “I play power forward,” Walker said. “It’s kinda hard to explain what it is, but it’s a mix between a guard and a post.” Along with basketball, in Walker’s free time, he enjoys drawing and sketching. “I’m good at drawing and sketching,” Walker said. In addition school, service, and sports, Walker is getting a head start in the business world. “I own a business with a partner, Campbell

Everly, and we mow lawns,” Walker said. Although mowing lawns has nothing to do with Walker’s career goal, owning your own business and managing the business well are skills that would benefit any job. “I want to become a nurse practitioner and help people,” Walker said. “A nurse practitioner is more of a one on one doctor, and they help people and that’s what I want to do.” It’s clear that Walker enjoys helping people, and want’s to continue to do so later in life. “My biggest passion is probably going and helping people that need help,” Walker said.


Chemistry teacher Todd McDonald’s thoughts:

“He is always willing to

stop what he is doing to help a student or teacher. He is a great colleague and friend.”

Senior Sabrina Zern’s thoughts: “He goes above and beyond for his students. He encourages not just his students to come in and get help but also students in other classes. He is very inviting to anyone that needs his help.”


Chemistry teacher Stuart Jorgensen describes his passions out of class. Story by Grace Buehler

Photo by Hayden Graham, Grace Buehler

Most people know chemistry teacher Stuart Jorgensen for his energetic and caring personality, but what many people don’t know is his love for science began at an early age. “I would say middle school is when I first really got passionate about science. I had really good science teachers.” Jorgensen said. His passion for science continued into college and even pushed him to be a teacher. “I have always been passionate about science and it always made a lot of sense to me,” Jorgensen said. “I thought it was interesting to be able to explain the world around us and how everything is made up.”


Spotlight December 19, 2017

Originally Jorgensen’s degree plans were purely chemistry, but during college, he decided that teaching was the best fit for him. “I got to college and continued to learn more, I knew I wasn’t the type of chemist who could sit and do the same lab every day,” Jorgensen said “I chose teaching because I could still do science and chemistry but interact with people.” Not only does Jorgensen teach Honors Theoretical Chemistry and AP Chemistry but he is also the sponsor of Dungeons and Dragons Club, Cards and Board Games Club and Anime Club. “I think they are clubs that are not normally represented in our building, so it is an opportunity for students with those

interests to come together,” Jorgensen said. Outside of school Jorgensen enjoys family time with his wife Morgan and almost two-year-old son Hugo and dog Ziggy. “I am most of the time a parent, but I have a lot of board games at home that I like to play with family and friends.” Jorgensen said. This year Jorgensen is excited to the celebrate Christmas with his extended family but also just the three of them. “I am looking forward to having our family Christmas with my wife and Hugo. When it’s just us celebrating, it is never on actual Christmas, so our Christmas is kind of like a second Christmas for just us three,” Jorgensen said.

Junior Tierra Williams thoughts: “D is a really good lunch lady. She doesn’t care just about food, she actually cares about if kids are eating or not. I might not eat that much but she always makes sure I’m eating something. She’ll talk to us about our days and she knows almost everyone’s name. She is one of my favorite people at this school.”

Nutrition specialist Judie Kerekes’ thoughts: “Diana is a hard worker, she always wants to help someone. She’s a good listener and she’s just a good person overall. Diana is caring, she’s a very emotional person when the time calls for it. She’s not afraid to speak her mind.”


Nutrition specialist Dianna Goodwin describes her love for life.

Story by Ashley Tindall Even though she’s worked at LHS for three years, students may not know the real Dianna Goodwin. She works to serve lunch to students daily, but loves to spend time with her family and friends, as well as travel around the world. Having traveled to places like Rome, Italy, Germany and more, she can’t wait to be completely retired and enjoy the sites the world has to offer. Goodwin’s family is her biggest priority. From her husband to her dogs, spending time with loved ones is what she enjoys most. She has two boxers, Ally and Leila. In fact, if she could be any animal she would be a dog. “I would be a dog because they are just like babies. They get to be petted, they’re

Spotlight December 19, 2017

Photos by Katelynn Dale, Charlene Nguyen and Kate Marshall spoiled rotten and who wouldn’t want to be a dog?” Goodwin said. She also loves to spend time with her friends. She enjoys going out to eat, doing fall shopping and enjoying the cool temperatures of autumn weather. Goodwin has one main goal. “I want to be able to live a long, good, healthy life with my family,” Goodwin said. Goodwin’s personality is what most people notice. She has a happy-go-lucky attitude and a positive outlook on life. “There is no reason to be down or to get upset,” Goodwin said. “Because there isn’t anything you can do about it.” That, added to her down-to-earth personality, makes her someone everyone

can talk to. She tries to know every students name and to make sure every student knows they can come and talk to here about anything. Goodwin tries to make sure that everyone feels welcomed and like they belong. “I love my students, I wish I had a relationship with all the students. There are some students who are lonely or you can tell they need a friend, I always try to smile at them and I wish they knew that I’m here for them,” Goodwin said. A word of advice for students: we should all forget, forgive and be kind to one another.


Freshman Trenton O’Bannon, senior Chloe Kuchta, sophomore Alyssa Lopez and junior Kaylee Parker come together in their excitement to celebrate diverse holidays this winter. “I love the idea that even those who don’t celebrate the religious idea change to think about being nice to one another,” history teacher Doug Winkler said.

HAPPY HOLIJAYS Students and teachers celebrate holidays in December. Story by Joey O’Kelly

Photo by Jenna Axsom

It’s the holiday season – and that’s multiple holidays. The time between Thanksgiving and New Year’s is chockfull of holidays. In fact, one religious holiday gets a lot of attention at LHS, while others do not. Students celebrate a wide variety of them.


“We are all so different. We are all individuals, so let us celebrate what we believe in and let each other enjoy that.” - senior Chloe Kuchta

The Bell staff polled LHS students to discover what holidays they celebrate. Of the 119 who responded, 118 said that they celebrate Christmas. Christmas is a Christian holiday that celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ on December 25. “I am Catholic and my mom is Baptist,” senior Chloe Kuchta said. “I follow Christ, so Christmas is just what I celebrate.” Christmas comes with a massive amount of pop culture through such means as music, socks, sweaters, decorations and more.

It makes the season a festive one and, for some, it just adds to the joy. “I really enjoy the music,” junior Kaylee Parker said. “I enjoy the spirit of it and how everything seems to be more festive around Christmastime.” Commonly, the day after Thanksgiving is when some start to celebrate Christmas but this is not the case for Parker. “I’ve been preparing for Christmas for a while now,” Parker said. “My walkup songs for the softball team were Christmas songs.” Math teacher Eniola Ajayi, who grew up in Nigeria, claims one difference between American Christmas and Nigerian Christmas is the inclusion of Boxing Day. “In Nigeria, Boxing Day is huge,” Ajayi said. “The 25th was for family and thinking about the reason for the season and on the 26th we would open presents.”


InDepth December 19, 2017


HANUKKAH The Jewish holiday of Hanukkah is celebrated December 12-20. It celebrates the rededication of the second Jewish Temple in Jerusalem and is celebrated for eight days. “I celebrate with my family,” sophomore Alyssa Lopez said. “This year it’s during finals week but usually I come home and we have our Menorah set up. We light it every night together. We sing a few songs, say a few prayers and usually, depending on the year, we hand out presents every day or just the last day of Hanukkah. The youngest gets their present first and then it goes until the oldest gets their present.” Hanukkah has a few similarities with Christmas. There are some of the same baselines like religion and gift-giving but the length of the holiday is different as well as the reasons and history. “It’s not really considered a major holiday because Christmas is kind of universal,” Lopez said. “I don’t see it being very different. It incorporates the idea that family should be together. I guess in some aspects it would be different just because of the meaning for it. It’s not for someone that was born on that day, it’s for our temples and saying ‘we had lighting and God brought us a miracle.’” With the Christmas trees in the front entrance of the school, some are left wondering about the representation of other holidays. “Maybe put a little Menorah somewhere or recognize Hanukkah with cookies or something small just to show that everybody gets to be included,” Lopez said. “I may also celebrate Christmas some years but some people don’t at all. They just do Hanukkah and they go to our school. They just get to see Christmas trees everywhere and not be included.”

InDepth December 19, 2017

Kwanzaa is a celebration of life from December 26 to January 1. This holiday is celebrated by traditional Africans and African-Americans. The holiday celebrates African heritage, unity and culture. “The first time I celebrated it was two years ago,” freshman Trenton O’Bannon said. “My dad saw that it was a black holiday and being African-American, he wanted to make sure we celebrated it. The first year he made me read an article about it. It was pretty interesting. The second year, which was last year, we acknowledged it.” Unlike Christmas and Hanukkah, Kwanzaa is a cultural holiday rather than a religious one. This way people of any faith may celebrate Kwanza, possibly in addition to another holiday. “It’s important to me because it’s my heritage and I respect my heritage,” O’Bannon said. “I want to stay close to my roots.” There are some misconceptions about the holiday. “Acknowledge that it’s a holiday,” O’Bannon said. “When people are saying it’s the holiday season, don’t just be thinking of Christmas or focusing on one holiday, acknowledge other holidays.”

KEEP AN OPEN MIND Along with these three holidays, there are also religions that don’t celebrate anything in December. Whatever holiday one celebrates, it’s important to acknowledge others and keep an open mind. “I love the idea that even those who don’t celebrate the religious idea change to think about being nice to one another and the emphasis on giving,” history teacher Doug Winkler said.


THE GREATEST GIFT Editorial by Editor-in-Chief Riley Kelley

Photo courtesy of Riley Kelley

Every year around Christmas time, my sister and I go through our family photo albums. We have holiday pictures from every stage of our life, with Colby and I smiling side by side draped in strands of Christmas lights or have drinking hot chocolate in matching coats at Silver Dollar City. There is one photo album that is full of pictures of Colby as a newborn wrapped in a stocking and dressed in a Christmas sweater with a star on the front. She was born just two days before my third Christmas, which made for a Christmas I will never forget. I gave Santa quite the challenge 16 years ago. For the majority of 2001, I told everyone who was willing to listen that the only thing I wanted for Christmas was a little sister. Santa really came through for me that year, and on December 23rd, 2001, I got exactly what I wanted. Jumping up and down in the hallway at North Kansas City Hospital in a little green sweater with jingle bells on it, I excitedly greeted my new companion. Being a newborn baby, she

was quiet and small and adorable. We dressed her in Christmas sweaters and matching hats, took hundreds of pictures of her, and, of course, my parents gushed over her every chance they got. It must’ve slipped my two-year-old mind that babies get bigger. In the following years, I considered exchanging my Christmas present a time or two. I was jealous that she stole Mom and Dad’s attention, so I made a surprise guest appearance in every single one of baby Colby’s home videos. I even went as far to tell my grandpa that I would prefer if he was just my grandpa and not my sister’s. Then one day, she started listening to the same music that I did, shared her clothes with me and became a partner in all of my shenanigans. I found myself missing her when she spent the night at a friend’s house. As high schoolers, we got to be on the tennis court together. Getting third place at State with my sister brought us closer than I ever thought we could be. She is my best friend and biggest supporter. I realize now that the Christmas gift I received in 2001 is the greatest gift that I will ever receive.

THE GUILT THAT STOLE CHRISTMAS Editorial by Managing Editor Jenna Spence

Photo by Hayden Graham

‘Tis the season for the “What do you want for Christmas?” “Hey send me your Christmas List!” and “Have you been pinning things you want onto your Pinterest board?” comments from my closest friends and family. This is a nerve-wracking time of the year for me. Although the season is holly and jolly and merry and bright and things of that nature, I struggle with the concept of asking people I love to spend money on me. Flashback seven or eight years ago. My dad and I are at a store in early December. I need a winter coat and I have been eyeballing one that every girl in school was wearing. I saw it hanging there, so I walked towards it. I looked at the price tag and walked away. That price was way too expensive. That was the answer I gave my dad when he asked me why I walked away. He told me that it really wasn’t all that expensive and 10 minutes later I was walking out of the store with a brand new coat and an awful feeling in my stomach. Of course there are things I would love to receive as a Christmas present. Lululemon leggings? Yes,

please. That iPhone X would be a great thing to wake up to on Christmas morning. Would I ever actually ask for those things? Considering one pair of Lululemon leggings and an iPhone X cost over $1,000 combined, the answer is No with a capital N. That being said, creating a list of things to ask for for Christmas is about as enjoyable as pulling teeth. Back to the parking lot of the sporting goods store, I apologized to and thanked my dad for spending the money that he did on my new coat. The reason this shopping trip stands out to me today is because of what my dad taught me on the drive home. Being aware and appreciative of the things that are given to you is a huge and hard thing to do. Sometimes we take things for granted, and hope for people to buy us amazing gifts. The fact of the matter is, not everyone in the world is lucky enough to receive presents every holiday. That being said, we should remember to genuinely thank whomever bought us a present if we are to receive one. A smile and an excited thank you can make your gift-giver feel the true spirit of the holiday.


Opinion December 19, 2017

WEIGHT LISTED Editorial by Design Editor Teegan Saunders

Photo by Hayden Graham

I’ve always thought of myself as a rather confident person, aware of my own value. That was until I applied to be a counselor at a summer camp. I had previously been a camper before my sophomore year. It was called Camp Jump Start or CJS and the main focus was to help kids struggling with body image. I attended the camp for eight weeks, where daily activities included aerobics, running, and climbing up the world’s worst hill. All of the physical activity, along with healthy eating made me feel like a new person. It was hard being away from home for so long, but the other campers soon became family. All the counselors went above and beyond to encourage me, which inspired me to come back and help others. So this year, I’ve decided to become a counselor at CJS myself. I have never seen such a rigorous application. While looking down at the full eight pages I felt overwhelmed and unqualified. It made me question my own individuality. Why would they want a girl who just graduated high school helping take care of kids barely younger than

herself? Why would they pick me, with my lack of skills and training over somebody who had actually knowledge in exercise and dieting? These are the things I contemplate often, and it’s hard to not wallow in self-doubt. I try not to let these thoughts overwhelm me, even in my lowest moments. Despite my age and lack of qualification, I still want the chance to work at CJS. It helped me accept myself and recognize the reality of staying healthy. It’s not fun to restrict myself from eating a whole pizza, but it makes me feel better in the long run. Things like calorie intake and proper exercise routines are things I learned while attending CJS. These are the things I keep in the back of my mind whenever I find myself sitting in front of a plate of cookies, or with a bag of my favorite chips. Trying to break my bad eating habits and selfesteem issues are still some of the hardest things I do daily. I owe a lot to this camp and want to give back. I want to help kids who are struggling with the same insecurities I once faced and remind them that weight does not define worth.

Editorial by Sports Editor Marcus Myvett

Photo by Ashley Ritter

First off, everyone disregard my last column. That was written before the Chiefs actually started to lose every single game they played. They went from number one in the power rankings to number 21 in the span of seven weeks. And for me, it’s not fully quarterback Alex Smith’s fault. It’s the offensive line. Since week nine, he’s thrown at least one interception per game. That’s all due to the failure that the offensive line not blocking well enough and giving Smith enough time in the pocket. The average time in the pocket is about 2.5 seconds, while Smith is getting about 2 until he’s under pressure from the defense and either has to move out of the way and throw it or scramble. It also seems like Smith is blind, because on multiple occasions in multiple games, receivers have been wide open and he hasn’t even glanced their way. Players like Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce have been in the middle of the field with no defenders around them. Is he scared it’ll get intercepted there? Or is he just feeling the effects of 13 seasons, not counting college or highschool? I know a lot of people disagree with me when I say that the Chiefs should start Mahomes. I don’t mean for a whole game.

Maybe a quarter or a couple drives. Just look at Mahomes stats from college. He had a 65.7% completion rate, which is right behind Smith’s at 67.9%. In 2016, Mahomes had 5052 yards for the season, which is more then Smith has ever had in his career for a single season. Mahomes also had a total of 41 touchdowns in his 2016 season, while Smith’s total so far is 23, which is from 2013 to this season. I know Mahomes is still young and fresh from college, but if Andy Reid doesn’t give him experience, it’s gonna be a disaster. If Smith gets injured, then Mahomes will go into an NFL game without a single minute of a regular season game under his belt. Are the Chiefs going to make the playoffs? Who knows. With the power rankings for the Chiefs placing them pretty low, it doesn’t look like it. If they keep playing like they have been, then they have a slight chance of making it, but they won’t make it past the second round. But maybe Reid will start Mahomes or come up with some more of his famous trick plays. At this point, I know the fans and players will take anything for a win, since they’ve gone four weeks without one.


Opinion December 19, 2017





“Hanukkah Sameach” and “Habari Gani,” are phrases not commonly heard here at LHS. As the holiday season draws near, we usually hear “Merry Christmas.” This begs the question, does LHS recognize all religious holidays celebrated during December? After a long discussion and research, The Bell staff decided no, LHS does not celebrate all holidays equally. While LHS itself does not promote a specific holiday, there are a large number of Christmas decorations visible throughout the school. Whether it’s on posters or the blue tinsel Christmas trees by the front office, symbols of Christmas are present, but no menorahs or kinaras to represent Hanukkah and Kwanzaa. One LHS teacher believes Christmas decorations have simply become

Monday, December 11, 2017 at 9:11:49 AM Central Standard Time

Illustration by Daryl Gichui

“mainstream” and “part of pop culture.” She believes the school is not necessarily promoting a particular holiday but rather promoting holiday spirit and festivity in general. One Bell staff member commented on how Christmas has become such an integral part of society that it’s not really considered a religious holiday anymore. Many staff members brought up that rather than being a holiday that focuses only on its Christian background, Christmas has become little more than a label placed on the time of year for families to get together. Another factor that may influence the Christmas-centered focus is the lack of knowledge of other religious celebrations. One Bell staff member commented on how a lot of people are unaware of other holidays.

Grace Buehler

Editorial by Aaron Jones

Along with that, some religious holidays don’t even occur in the winter. One Bell staff member, who is Muslim, mentioned that their family doesn’t celebrate Christmas at all. Ramadan is the equivalent of Christmas in Islam, which won’t come around again until the end of Summer, 2018. In a unanimous vote, the staff decided there needs to be more awareness of more religious holidays than just Christmas.

YES: 0 NO: 18

The opinions reflected do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the entire Bell staff. For comments and concerns, email the editor at

Staff Ed December 19, 2017


Photos by Alyssa Griffith, Jenna Axsom, Chrystian Noble and Grace Buehler

I get so confused when I see those questions mark thingys in tweets. Where do they come from? –@reiterpihc

Mr. Moree used Comic Sans on an assignment today just because he knows I hate the font and wanted to make me mad.–@gracejohannes

You know it’s duo work night when you start off by saying “I just want you to know, I still love you when I yell at you tonight & it’s not your fault.” –@_maggiequinn_ If I play a Will Smith song in the car and you don’t lose your mind....I’m kicking you out the car –@ jonesyy_

I am boycotting The Bell until my dog is featured –@oliviaanewell

23 Jabber December 19, 2017

A Very



Story by Haley Stephenson Photos by Mercedes Peck , Morgan Clark and Kaleigh McCarthy

Left: Students try to stay balanced while ice skating at Crown Center. Right: The Plaza features each street covered from top to bottom in lights.

Bells are ringing outside of shops and there’s a chill in the air. Many students agree there’s no better holiday season than one spent in Kansas City. Kansas City’s abundant variety of cultures and traditions makes spending the holiday season a truly unique experience.

Crown Center

which is decorated with 3,000 ornaments that are recycled for charity at the end of the month. “I think there are a lot of fun places to go visit with lights,” freshman Christian York said. “The Plaza has such a fun environment and it makes Christmas more fun.”

Crown Center is a local favorite. Its ice skating rink is the most popular in the area and it has several shops and restaurants. “During the holidays I love to go downtown because if the weather isn’t bad it’s really nice to go out and see the lights,” junior Jonathan Edens said. “Crown Center has the prettiest lights and the giant tree. You can go inside and get warm or get some food and hot chocolate. Other than that I just love to go see movies with the people I care about because movies are cooler in the winter I think.” Regular admission is $6, or free for adults over age 60 and children age 4 and under. Skate rental is $3. Skating is open from November 3 to March 11.


The Plaza

The Nutcracker

The Plaza never fails to put on an impressive light display. There are also many Christmas themed activities throughout the shopping center, such as visiting with Santa and horse drawn carriage rides which start at $70. The city’s largest Christmas tree is also also available to visit on Nichols Road & Pennsylvania,

A&E December 19, 2017

The new winter attraction ‘Winterfest’ at Worlds of Fun has many students buzzing, due to the new extended season for rides and attractions. This includes ice skating, Santa’s workshop, new exclusive restaurants and live performances. Day passes for the park are $28 and ice skating is an additional $10. Winterfest is available November 24 through December 30. “I want to go back to Winterfest because it was so much fun when I went with my family,” Edens said. “Next time I want to go with my friends and the people I care about so I have someone to hold my hand while I’m there.” The Kansas City ballet is also performing its annual show ‘The Nutcracker’. The show is at The Kauffman Center For The Performing Arts from December 7 through the 24. Tickets start at $70. “My family goes to see ‘The Nutcracker’ every year,” senior Emma Kenney said. “I used to do Ballet for eleven years so it’s

been something we’ve done since I was a kid. We always have a nice Christmas dinner before hand too which is really fun. We’re going the 21st so it’s closer to Christmas.”

Christmas in the Park

The 30th annual Christmas in the Park, held at Jackson County Park in the Frank White Jr., Softball Complex, features more than 300,000 lights and animations. Admission is free, however donations for more than 39 local charities are accepted. The park has raised more than one million dollars in donations which goes towards making the holiday season a little more cheerful for children and families in need. Senior Rebecca Hollar has never been. “I really want to go and support the Christmas in the Park,” Hollar said. “It’s a light show in the park that you can go to with friends and family. It seems like a lot of fun.” The holiday season brings out a sense of pride for our community that is unmatched during any other point during the year. “I think that Kansas City is one of the best places to be,” Edens said. “Not only during the holiday season, but all year round. There’s always so much to do. There’s First Fridays and the Farmer’s Market, but during the holidays they make everything cheerier. It’s so nice because everyone is so friendly to be around.”


YOUNG AND WRESTLESS The wrestling team gets amped up for upcoming tournaments. Story by Paige Twenter

Photos by Mara Fryer room. That’s how we’re preparing, just by beating each other up.” After the first tournament, they have five more throughout their full season until mid-February when State Championships start. During each week of the season, they have duals with one or two other teams. Before they can start their bracket-style matches at tournaments, they have to weigh-in an hour before to qualify for one of 14 weight classes. The sport isn’t all about shots and and headlocks, it’s also about a management style that can lift a team up.

It’s one of the oldest sports on earth, with almost 200 nations participating worldwide. It’s ranked number six for high school male participants. Can you guess which one it is? Wrestling embodies all these and for 43 students at LHS, holds a special place in their hearts. For the team, practices stretch from an hour and a half to two hours every weekday with optional practices on Sunday. The practices aren’t complete until they warm up, drill, practice new and old moves and “go live” for matches with each other. Since they’ve just been wrestling with one another since the end of October, the team was getting antsy to head into the tournament portion of their season and wrestle with new opponents, which began Saturday, December 2. “We’ve been practicing and practicing,” senior Parker Houck said. “I take full pride in my team because every day we’re beating each other up in the


“I take full pride in my team because every day we’re beating each other up in the room. That’s how we’re preparing, just by beating each other up.” -senior Parker Houck “It’s not just about coaching the kids and practicing, there’s a lot of other things like paperwork, getting ready for tournaments, fundraisers and all kinds of stuff,” Head coach Dustin Brewer said. “I can’t do everything. I have to let my assistants do stuff too so I can make sure the kids are prepared when they step on the mat.” Head manager senior Malissa Pennington, who’s been a manager since her freshman year, has experienced it all; from switching head coaches to taking stats to cleaning up vomit and blood. Her favorite aspect about managing is being able to see the growth of every single player.

“Coach Brewer makes all the managers go to all the practices,” Pennington said. “You get to know more in depth what the sport really means, which is really special to a manager. You get to see a side of wrestling that nobody else will see.” This is Brewer’s eleventh year coaching wrestling and his second year at LHS. He’s set some values and goals for the team and is confident in his plans. “The best part of coaching wrestling is it’s a sport where the amount of work you put in shows up on the mat. You can’t be lazy and be good,” Brewer said. “Some sports you might be able to not work as hard and get away with it because there’s a whole team behind you. But in this sport, it’s just you out there so the amount of work you put in really shows.” In just less than two years, Brewer has made some big changes. “When Coach Brewer came in, he changed the entire squad. He focused more on the guys as individuals, no matter if you’re just starting out or you’ve been wrestling all your life. He let every guy know they’re here to work hard,” Pennington said. “He really inspires the guys to work hard and do the best they can.”

Above: Senior Parker Houck takes a beating by his fellow teammates every practice, but is still grateful for them and everything they bring to the team. Below: Wrestling coach Dustin Brewer has pushed the wrestlers hard to become better in their sport.

Sports December 19, 2017

SPORTS CALENDAR 19 2 0 2 1 2 2 2 3 24 2 5 2 6 2 7 2 8 2 9 3 0 31

Boys Basketball 12.19 - Freshman A/B



@ HOME vs. North Kansas City 12.26 - Varsity TBD @ Rockwood Summit 1.3 - Sophomore 5:00p @ HOME vs. Ruskin Freshman A/B 5:00p @ Liberty North 1.4 - Freshman A/B 4:00p @ Blue Springs South - Sophomore 5:30p @ Park Hill South 1.5 - JV/Varsity 5:00p @ Staley 1.6 - Varsity 5:00p @ Blue Valley North

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

Girls Basketball 12.26 - Varisty TBD @ HOME vs. TBA 12.27/28 - Varisty Tournament @ Rockwood Summit 1.2 - JV/Varsity @ Lee’s Summit 1.3 - Freshman A @ Liberty North 1.5 - JV/Varsity @ Staley 1.6 - Varisty @ Blue Valley North vs. TBA

TBD 5:00p 6:00p 5:00p TBA


12.19 - JV/Varsity 6:00p @ Blue Springs South 1.3 - JV/Varsity Match 6:00p @ Lee’s Summit North 1.4 - JV/Varsity 6:00p @ Kearney 1.6 - JV Tournament 8:00a @ HOME vs. TBA

Swim & Dive 12.21 - Varsity Girls


@ Lee’s Summit North 12.27 - Varsity Girls @ Blue Springs South, Family YMCA TBD 1. 5 - Varsity Girls TBD @ MIZZOU vs. Columbia Hickman

27 Sports December 19, 2017

a a a a


Blitzen Candy Cane Latkes Comet

a a a a

Dancer Menorah Kwanzaa Eggnog

a a a a

Dreidel Mistletoe Noel Rudolph

The first two people per grade to bring a finished Word Search to Room 512 win a prize!

Games December 19, 2017


Photo’s by Hayden Graham, Jenna Axsom, Katelynn Dale, and Morgan Clark

Sophomore Patrick Kiely shows off one festive ugly sweater. Prices vary. If you need a quick pick-me-up, these festive drinks are your best bet. The Nest has great deals with hot drinks for $1 and cold drinks for $2. Starbucks has an extensive menu with prices ranging between $5-$20.

With so many fun styles to mix and match, these $1 Target socks are a great stocking stuffer! Science teacher Jill Endaya poses with her classroom Christmas decor.

29 What’s Hot December 19, 2017


Games December 19, 2017

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