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October 2, 2009


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Volume 55 | Issue 1

6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814

When the Hard Hats Come Off . . .

School Update Back from summer break with tan lines, chlorinated green hair and very few completed summer assignments, students began the new school year walking into a nearly-finished school. One final hallway has been shut down and new ones have been opened, but by now, the upperclassmen are used to it. “Samaha & Associates designed the school, and planning began back in 1997,” said Principal Chistopher Garran.“We’ve been in construction now for several years.” Many parents and students were involved in the planning of construction a few years ago, and they decided to renovate it rather than rebuild on the football field. “It was a decision made back in 1997 that we would keep the bones ofWalter Johnson,” said Garran.“You can walk around this building and there are still certain places where you say,‘Oh yeah, this is the old WJ.’” The school has remained open through the construction process so far, and will not be closing at all this year.The rest of the building is scheduled to be finished by January, and the campus grounds are expected to be done this coming summer. “I’ll be glad when it’s over,” said Garran.“I have a lot more gray hair now than I did when it started.”

By Liz Wasden

Student Commons The student commons were new spaces fow which many

had high expectations. “We’re the only school yet who has student commons,” said Garran. “Schools from different places have visited us to see our construction, and they’ve talked about doing something like it. It was created as a space where SGA officers could have their own offices, [an area where] students and teachers could meet together and a place where clubs could meet and invite speakers.” There is a curtain that pulls down in the commons for speakers who come to WJ. The commons also spill out into an outdoor courtyard where picnic tables are set up for eating lunch. “We are working on getting WiFi in the Student Commons,” said Assistant Principal and modernization cooderinator Christopher Merrill. “It all depends on what we hear from the central office.”


Above: Main Courtyard, still under construction.

Drawing courtesy of Samaha & Associates

COMING SOON The new hallway that will be opening in January will include new counseling offices, security, a health room and new math and science classrooms. Over the summer of 2010, there will be construction on the front parking lot and Portable City will be no more. “After the portables are gone, we are going to re-sod the grass and turn it into a practice field,” said Merrill. Also, a second entrance to the school will be completed as well as the auditorium courtyard. New workrooms for the Academic Support Center and additional English rooms will all be coming second semester. The football field is currently grass but will be completed with turf in spring. The track, which is asphalt as of now, will also be rubberized.

Main Entrance

The new main entrance is a huge improvement since last year, when the school’s ‘main entrance’ was a series of double doors in front of the school. The new entrance is much more easily recognized as a main entrance, and guests can clearly see the main office right inside the entrance. “There were a couple things in the design that were important to us,” said Garran. “One, that the focus should be students. So when you walk through the main entrance what you see is a student art gallery that we’ve created and student commons to the left.” The student art gallery is a glass-enclosed area in the middle of the entrance hall for students and visitors to see.



The new building has been focused on bringing the inside out and the outside in. All five courtyards throughout the school are going to be made accessible and usable every day, with more entrances, benches and picnic tables than before. Near the auditorium, some new lighting and benches have been added for use during intermission at concerts and plays. The center courtyard will also run from the main entrance to the senior hallway, so students can cut right through the school. “One of the courtyards will be slowly transformed into a student sculpture garden the art department is planning,” said Garran. “And there’s been talk of making another one into an organic garden with horticulture students who have an interest in that.” The courtyard outside the student commons is split; half is for child development with a playground (which is not for students) and half has patios and big steps to eat lunch on.

Counseling Offices

With construction, one last hallway is still underway, causing a few departments, including Counseling Services, to be short on space while waiting for their new offices. Until January, the counseling offices are split three ways. The Counseling Services department is in room 138, room 106 and several of the student commons offices. “This arrangement was based on what space was available and what would be available for my staff,” said director of Counseling Services Dennis Reynolds. “We have individual offices for student confidentiality and it wasn’t practical to use portable space.” Offices were needed for eight counselors, support staff and 2000 student files. Though the offices are spread all through the school, the arrangement is only temporary until a new counseling office is finished in the same hallway as last year.

Up at Bat:

Student Summer Stories

If “Real World” Came to WJ, What Would They Do?



Frozen Yogurt vs. Cupcakes



[ news ]



Volume 54 | Issue 3


Israel -

On Sept. 30, U.S. officials said that they would try to meet with Iranian diplomats to allow an informal discussion to be held in order to reinforce U.S. concerns. The concerns are centered around Tehran’s nuclear ambitions. A nuclear reactor was built under an agreement between Iran and Russia. The U.S. has already placed heavy economic sanctions on Iran.

Hamas has decided to offer a tape proving that Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit is still alive in return for the release of 20 Palestinian women being held in Israeli prisons. Shalit was captured in 2006 and remains a captive of Hamas. This could mark the progression to a larger prisoner exchange. Information provided by

Information provided by

Samoa -

Indonesia -

American Samoa was hit on Sept. 29 by a powerful tsunami producing waves 15 to 20 feet tall. The tsunami resulted from an earthquake that had happened minutes before. The earthquake registered as an 8.0 on the Richter scale. There have been at least 119 casualties found thus far and many survivors have fled to higher ground on the South Pacific Islands.

On Sept. 30, Jakarta, Indonesia was hit by an earthquake that registered as a 7.6 on the Richter scale. The casualty count is currently at 75 but is expected to rise sharply in the next few days. The earthquake occurred on the same fault line that delivered the tsunami in 2004, which killed over 230,000 people.

Information provided by

Information provided by

United States -

United States -

The Supreme Court is preparing to hear a gun control case to clarify the District of Columbia v. Heller ruling, which decreed that a ban on handguns in D.C. was unconstitutional. However, the D.C. v. Heller ruling did not specify whether or not state bans on handguns were unconstitutional as well. Chicago and Oak Hill, Ill. have challenged bans on handguns; the case will be heard next year.

The United States plans to withdraw 4,000 U.S. soldiers from Iraq in Oct. according to U.S. General Ray Ordierno, the military commander in Iraq. Ordierno cited a drop in violence as the motivation for the withdrawal. All combat troops are to be withdrawn by 2010, but President Barack Obama plans to keep 35,000-40,000 troops in Iraq for support after all the combat troops have been withdrawn.

Information provided by

Information provided by

Articles compiled by Ava Bleiberg and Luke Wilson




44% in favor of gay marriage


opposed to

gay marriage

...according to a national poll Information provided by CNN

“Going Rogue”

A woman in Indonesia recently gave birth to the heaviest newborn ever recorded in the country, 19.2 pounds.

Sarah Palin’s memoir, “Going Rogue,” is #1 most preordered book on the Barnes & Noble website and #2 on

Information provided by

October Vocab Word:



The case in which a pregnant woman ovulates and winds up with a second pregnancy. This recently occurred during the pregnancy of Julia Grovenburg of Fort Smith, Ark.

Chart Topping


Wood Kundor, from Malaysia, is 107 years old. She is searching for her twenty-third husband because she is scared of her current husband, a 32-year-old drug addict.



Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs

The San Diego Zoo welcomed the arrival of a new baby Giant Panda eight weeks ago.

Biggest box office seller week of Sept 25 2009

Information provided by

Facts compiled by Ava Bleiberg

6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814

October 2, 2009

October 2, 2009



Volume 54 | Issue 3

[ news ]

6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814


“These people came on in total white medical outfits with these masks, and they come on with these guns… ”

C H1N1

“This summer I flew to China,” said senior Jeremy Peck. “Just expecting to go to Beijing, see the usual stuff, and then go to a different province and live like the locals and try to study Chinese. But when we got to the airport…” Two Walter Johnson students boarded a plane on July 14, sitting restlessly with 20 other students through the 14-hour long flight to Beijing, China, where they expected to spend three weeks immersed in Chinese culture. What they were unaware of was the extra passenger aboard the flight. Nestled between two students sat the H1N1influenza virus, waiting to infiltrate the immune systems of seven teenagers and cause the quarantine over 2000 Chinese citizens. “We didn’t know this at the time,” said McKee. “But apparently there was one kid in our group who showed up to the airport not feeling well. And of course he didn’t tell anyone because he would’ve been turned away.” Peck and fellow senior Norine McKee were among the traveling students. The summer program they had registered for was a collaboration between Hanban, a nongovernmental section of the Chinese Language Council International, and the Confucius Institute at the University of Maryland. Together, these two organizations strive to provide students internationally with knowledge and experience of China to bridge culture gaps. Hanban provided the trip free of cost. Once at the Beijing airport, the program agenda was

rearranged as Chinese Aviation Officials thoroughly checked each passenger for flu symptoms. “These people come on in total white medical outfits with these masks,” said Peck. “And they come on with these guns, these radar guns, and they take everybody’s temperature by zapping their forehead.” All students were able to make it off the plane without showing any signs of having contracted the H1N1 virus, commonly referred to as swine flu. However, the students’ temperatures were taken again off the plane as an additional health precaution, and one student, whose name has remained unstated, was taken away to a hospital. One student smaller, the group went to a school, which they were supposed to stay at for the first part of their trip. After the students unpacked their bags, the sight seeing began and a feeling of normalcy returned to the program. The students went to see the Bird’s Nest, the Olympic stadium on that first day. The next day the students woke up, planning on being shown the Forbidden City, but then began the quarantine. The students had to stay in the school and were not supposed to leave their respective rooms. “[The Chinese Hanban officials] were just like, ‘No. [The first student] tested positive for swine flu, so you guys are quarantined,’” said Peck. “And then we were quarantined again the next day, and that day was even

By Ava Bleiberg more intense. They took our temperature four times everyday.” On this second day of quarantine, two more students were determined to be exhibiting flu symptoms and were taken away to a different hospital. According to McKee, these two students were sitting on either side of the first boy who was confirmed to have the H1N1 virus. “Everyday it was kind of the same thing, one more person got taken away, so it was like this crazy horror movie where everybody is getting picked off one by one,” said Peck. Eventually, the Chinese government had the students transferred to a quarantine hotel, specifically designated for people exhibiting signs of the H1N1 virus because they did not want to risk infecting the entire school of 2000 Chinese students, who had already been quarantined within their school due to the risk of infection from the American group. On the third day, both Peck and McKee were taken away from the group and brought to separate hospitals. “They got an ambulance to come after making me sit outside in 98 degree weather for an hour waiting because they didn’t want me to be in the same sick room as the non-infected,” said McKee. “I was going in an ambulance driven by two people in legitimate hazmat See WJ Students Quaratined in China, Page 4


[ editorial ]


October 2, 2009

Volume 54 | Issue 3


w e e k l y

U p

A t

B a t

6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814

p o l l s ,

v i s i t


If “RealWorld” Came toWJ,WhatWould They Do?

Hardly Realistic Reality

By Abby Singley

Photos by Celia Karp and Abby Singley

“Bad things.” -Junior Maddie Kruger

“There would be a big mascot cheating scandal. The wildcat and the cow would get it on.” -Sophomore Liam Gallagher

“Everyone would start wearing ugly neon sunglasses.” -Senior Jackson Wilke

I’m ashamed to admit it, but I am an addict. I am addicted to reality TV. In fact, practically all of my DVR is taken over by reality shows. I’ve even stooped so low as to watch “Kourtney & Khloé Take Miami.” I just can’t resist losing some brain cells here and there by watching a bunch of attention whores make fools of themselves on national television. After bravely admitting that I was powerless to reality TV and then putting myself through reality show-withdrawal, I had an extreme setback. Once I learned that MTV’s “RealWorld” had entered D.C. to film “Real World D.C.,” I went back to my bad habits and wanted to know every detail of how MTV was going to distort the reality of D.C. life. And then, thanks to those nice producers who create the not-so-real “Real Worlds,” I came up with quite the idea. Envision this: “Real World WJ.” That’s right . . . bring all of those freaks over to our school and let the games begin! Who knows what the producers would do to simulate their idea of WJ life? Considering that the contestants of “Real World D.C.” have been meeting with congressmen, living the life on Capitol Hill, working for D.C. sports teams and doing other not-so-typical jobs in D.C., I think we can say MTV would view our modernization as a double for D.C.’s government location. While those contestants have been living as if every D.C. resident “chillaxes” with government workers everyday, “Real World WJ” contestants would be greeted with hard hats and big yellow construction signs pointing them where

to go. Or even better, like “Real World Cancun” contestants were tour guides to students in Mexico, “Real World WJ” contestants could be tour guides to all WJ students, not only freshmen, but all of us baffled by the ever-changing map that makes up what we call school. As for accommodations, those contestants are going straight to the portables! They should appreciate our generosity in offering them such lovely double-wides located directly next to the ever-so-famous Giant. Does it get any better? In fact it does – the drama that comes with Portable City life. Maybe the “Real World WJ” contestants would get roommates in their portables, but once a love triangle starts with the heartthrob living in P20 and two catty girls, the school might just go into a Code Red when Mr. Hottie is caught sneaking back to his portable in his briefs after a night with one of his women in P15. I can already hear Dr. Garran’s voice on the PA system: “Attention WJ, a ‘Real World’ cat fight is going on somewhere in the building and we are entering a Code Red. This is not a drill! Let me repeat: this is not a drill.” Also, just forget our obsession with swine flu. God only knows what those “Real World” contestants are infected with. I’d suggest everyone carries around some Clorox wipes and Purell. As much as I’d like to see “Real World” come to our school just to make fools out of themselves, I’d really like to send the contestants to WJ as students. Try doing my AP Calculus homework, “Real World” contestants! Now that would be entertainment.

“I don’t know, but that would make a good homecoming video.” -Sophomore Maddy Kunkle

“It’d be kind of crazy. Everybody’s lives here are really busy, never really a break or anything.” -Freshman Ian Morrison

“I think it’d be pretty dramatic, because it’s a high schoolhigh school drama!” -Junior Robert Mulvey

“It’d be like another other “Real World”: there’d be drama, they’d have sex- they’d fight about it.” -Junior Mia Rizzi (Left)

“There would be lots of chaos and drama.” -Junior Anh Le Editors-in-Chief Colin Buley Luke Wilson Abby Singley* News Editor Ava Bleiberg Ku Jung* Assistant News Editor Liz Wasden Editorial Editor Alexandra Sanfuentes Ian Green* Assistant Editorial Editor Devon Murtha Sports Editor Mateo Williamson Hannah Flesch* Jeremy Smith* Assistant Sports Editors Kathleen Seale Zach Gordon

“There’d be your typical hot guy, typical whore, the typical really annoying girl, and the one quiet sensitive guy.” -Senior Carolina Azcuña (Right)


Arts & Entertainment Editors Sasha Tycko Sophie Meade The Pitch is published nine times a year by the students of Rylee Genner* Feature Editor Walter Johnson High School, 6400 Rock Spring Drive, Camilla Yanushevsky Bethesda, Md. 20814. Advertising and subscription rates Katie Levingston* are available by calling 301-803-7302. Editorial opinions Assistant Feature Editor represent those of The Pitch staff and do not necessarily Ally Gordon reflect the opinions of the staff, faculty, or student body. Layout Editor We welcome letters, articles, photographs, and artwork Parker Smith to be submitted to room 211 or e-mailed to thepitch@ Copy Editors The Pitch is an award-winning paper Abby Singley that works towards providing the student body with acDevon Murtha curate as well as credible information. Photo Editor Celia Karp Columbia Scholastic National Scholastic American Scholastic Kathleen Seale* Press Association Press Association Press Association

Gold Medalist 2009

* Online Staff

Pacemaker Award 2008

First Place Special Merit 2008-2009

“I probably wouldn’t watch it.” -Senior Adam Moskowitz Print Staff Writers Jennifer Spencer Maia Dicey Flor Martinez Jenny Deutsch Cami Keyani Abby Singley Alex Spinard Ad Manager Hannah Flesch PR Manager Alex Spinard Business Manager Flor Martinez Advertising Manager Hannah Flesch

Online Staff Writers Ryan Lynch Miklos Szebeni Daniel Fanaroff Online Reporters Peter Langer Alona Korakin Photographers Kevin Nuñez Alex Curtis Cami Keyani Kathleen Seale Andrea Linder Julia Haymore Artist/Cartoonists Krithi Ramaswamy Will McGowan Samara Fantie Advisor Hilary Gates



[ editorial ]

Luke’s Life! The Adventures of Luke Wilson

By Luke Wilson I have a simple name, a simple house, a simple family (just me, mother, father and the ashes of my recently deceased dog) and a simple, if not beat up, baby blue car. But beneath my seemingly quaint life are stories of a man weathered by experience, and it is my duty to share these tales with you not only to entertain you, but to enlighten you. So here is the first in the series: The Accident. As I crested the hill of Democracy Boulevard in the direction of Old Georgetown Road after the second day of school, I jerked my car into the far right lane, my 1994 Geo Prism galloping angrily to the top. Aerosmith’s “Sweet Emotion” was pulsing from the speakers, which is perhaps what inspired me to press even harder on the gas despite the supposedly red light ahead (I still swear it was green). However, no one in front of me saw this green light and I hit the stopped car ahead of me, traveling at a modest 25 m.p.h. Now I must inform you that roughly ten minutes earlier, I had watched in agony as a friend mercilessly inhaled a Five Guys hot dog, despite my pleas for a bite. So it is fair to say I had hot dogs on the mind while I was driving. And how can a man, so heartlessly teased by the temptation of a hot dog just a few short moments earlier, be expected to drive safely? I don’t know either. After the initial jolt of my impact and the proceeding whap, whap, whap of the cars in front of me hitting one another, I exited my car, as did the other drivers. I found myself immediately confronted by a wild-eyed man with a bushy unibrow. “Why did you rear-end me?” he yelled, spit flying every which way. This was my chance. Have you ever heard a better opening to a “that’s what she said” joke? Maybe the accident was a dream come true. “That’s what she said!” I replied, eagerly awaiting Unibrow’s approval. As it turns out, Unibrow really didn’t have a sense of humor. He lunged at me. Thankfully, the drivers around me had the good sense to restrain him before I had to pummel him. I retreated back to my car to find my insurance and registration, and when I returned I discovered that someone had called the police. “Sir, from the reports I have gathered so far you are responsible for this accident,” said the cop, his mustache quivering every time he opened his mouth. “Let me ask you first off; are you under the influence of any kind of drug or alcohol?” “Hot dogs. . .” I replied in a scratchy voice, beads of sweat running down my forehead. “Just hot dogs.” “Hot dogs?” asked the cop. “Not only have you caused an accident, you are babbling incoherently. I also have reports of you provoking a fight with the man in the car in front of you. Is this true?” “Who told you that?” I asked. “Unibrow? Did Unibrow tell you that?” “I don’t talk to unibrows and neither do you, sir,” he said. “I hope you enjoy handcuffs and bunkmates, because you are sleeping with both of them tonight.” One last shot at glory. I had been in an accident, a fight and was going to jail. What was there to lose? “That’s what she said,” I replied.


Volume 54 | Issue 3

October 2, 2009

6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814

Pitch Opinion: MVA License Changes Really Necessary? Just yesterday, Maryland’s Motor Vehicle Administration new law went into effect regarding holders of learner’s permits and provisional licenses. Just a day ago, a minor who had obtained their learner’s permit at the age of 15 and 9 months only had to hold it for six months before said holder could apply for a provisional license. Now, however, a learner’s permit must be held for a minimum of nine months and the holder can only receive a provisional license at the age of 16 and 6 months, tacking on an extra three months of wait. Plus, rather than being able to apply for a full license at the age of 17 and 9 months, provisional license

holders can only apply for a full license if they are 18 years old. Is this extension of three months wait to get a license really worth changing the law? Maryland’s Motor Vehicle Administration claims that this change in the law is meant to “recognize the need for more experience on the road and establish serious sanctions for dangerous behavior.” The Pitch supports more experience on the road; however, just having a threemonth extension period for young drivers to wait to obtain their provisional and full licenses isn’t necessarily going to stop them from driving recklessly and abusing their driving privileges. If anything, the three-month wait won’t make

a difference. If a driver is going to choose to act immaturely on the road, they will do so, no matter what age they are. The extension won’t change their maturity level and it may even make them more inclined to break the law due to being more constrained. Most young drivers that the MVA wants to keep off the roads that will choose to drive recklessly due to lack of experience aren’t going to benefit from this. They are the ones this change of law is attempting to reach. Even if these drivers do have to wait an additional three months to get their licenses, they will probably just drive recklessly anyway.

WJ Breaks Record For Most Mascots By Maia Dicey This just in! WJ is trying to set a world record for having the largest number of ridiculous mascots. The newest addition: “dancing Banana.” Seriously,WJ? Seriously? Where did we even come up with that? Did someone just have a banana costume lying around and thought it would be a great idea to make it our fourth mascot? Don’t get me wrong. I love going to a school where nothing makes sense and no one is genuinely surprised to see a banana dancing at their pep rally alongside Green Man and the usual Wildcat and Mighty Moo. But I never imagined it would stretch Photo illustration by Kevin Nuñez to giant fruit. Some of Walter Johnson’s many mascots: Mighty Moo, Green Man, Scooby-Doo and the Wildcat joined by senior A solid four mascots Adam Moskowitz, intruded upon by the yellow newcomer: the Banana. might seem excessive, “I think they’re hilarious,” said no matter how unofficial, but it doesn’t the Woodward students. Mighty Moo stop there. There are still those who hold has been unofficial for years, coming to senior Gina Amsellem. “Random, but steadfastly to the mascot from the WJ of be because of how the school used to be hilarious.” As odd and unnecessary as these various next to a dairy farm, which was where old: the Spartan. mascots may be, there’s something really He is still alive in the school too, as Giant and G-Square are now located. As cool about the way that we can get away demonstrated by the larger-than-life for the other two unofficials…. with having raving fruit and kids wearing “The Banana and the Green Man, I don’t mural that used to be in the science wing before construction of that area was really know where they came from,” said neon full body suits representing us. In completed, and I seem to recall there Principal Christopher Garran. “They just fact, I think we need a few more. Maybe we can get a giant, smiling being talk of an official petition to bring showed up.” The Green Man made his first cactus this time, or a huge version of Dr. him back officially after 300 came out. That brings our total up to five totally appearance last year during a basketball Garran, à la the presidents that race at game against B-CC. At least the Green the Nationals’ games. And we’ll see if, random yet totally awesome mascots. The Wildcat has been the official mascot Man is following with WJ spirit, green over the course of the next year, we can for years, since we changed over from being one of the school colors. How the come up with a few more mascots, the stranger, the better. Soon, we’re bound the Spartan when WJ and Woodward banana ties in remains a mystery. The student body seems to respond to be world-renowned for having the merged. Woodward’s mascot was the Wildcat and when the two schools joined, positively to the less normal mascots most obnoxious mascots in the world. And what’s this? I notice in the above the Wildcat was chosen to welcome in though. photo...Scooby-Doo? I rest my case.


Drawn by Will McGowan and Arranged by Krithi Ramaswamy



October 2, 2009

Volume 54 | Issue 3

Internet Censorship Gone Awry in MCPS By Devon Murtha

The Montgomery County school system is required, by the Child Internet Protection Act (CIPA), to regulate in-school internet use that could be considered pornographic, obscene or potentially dangerous to minors. However, the censorship policy goes overboard in its attempt to keep the web safe for students. MCPS’s system, blocking certain words and phrases entered into a search engine from displaying results, makes educational research more difficult for students and is ultimately ineffective in its main goal of protecting students. MCPS not only blocks certain websites that it finds explicit, but it also blocks entire terms in searches, so even appropriate websites are unavailable for viewing. For example, it denies access to websites searched under the words “Nazi” or “Ku Klux Klan.” MCPS is not only hindering students’ ability for students to search websites that advocate racism, but is also hindering the ability for students to do research on these subjects from a historical point of view. The idea behind this censorship, to limit student exposure to hate groups, is understandable, but denying students the right to research legitimate historical topics is detrimental to their educational experience. Though it’s not a real problem at Walter Johnson, some students do not have computer access at home, so school computers are the only place to do research. What can students do if they can only research “approved” topics? MCPS’s goal to block hate-sites has failed horrendously. Somehow, despite their tries, websites advocating discrimination of homosexuals are found easily, as are websites that display and promote incredibly misogynistic porn. Not only are these restrictions harmful to the school system, they are also ineffective and random. There is no consistency about what students can and can’t search, and MCPS misses many websites that are truly inappropriate, while censoring many websites that aren’t.  Though the terms “orgasm,” “buying guns,” “marijuana,” and “wine” are blocked, “adult entertainment,” “buying weed,” and “blow jobs” are perfectly acceptable for student viewing. And even though social networking sites like Facebook are banned, in accordance with CIPA to protect students from online predators, Twitter and others are still there for use. The censorship is completely arbitrary and inconsistent, damaging the credibility and effectiveness of the system. If the initial goal of MPCS was to make it harder for students to do school-related work by blocking searches that could be research related, but allowing students to easily bypass its “security” to view truly inappropriate things, then it has hit its mark. But if they really want to make students safe, with an appropriate amount of freedom, they need some serious reform. They need to only be more specific about the websites they censor, and really review websites instead of broadly blocking them. The difference between educational and dangerous needs to be redefined, and the system MCPS uses to make this happen needs to have less flaws and more attention to detail.  

6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814

Would Someone Think About the Children? By Flor Martinez

It is difficult to ignore the fact that the internet is a valuable necessity for everyone, and for students to succeed in school, the internet is an important resource for academic study. However, the internet can also be harmful and students are always at risk of coming into contact with inappropriate and dangerous material. Despite measures to monitor students use, students can intentionally or unintentionally visit sites promoting hate, violence and pornography. Online predators can contact students through chat rooms and other interactive websites. Threats such as these have to be prevented using extreme measures to ensure full security for students. To keep internet access in schools and libraries restricted for academic use, Congress passed the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) in October 2000 to require schools and libraries that receive federal funds for computer internet access to certify that they “employ technological protections that block or filter certain visual pictures labeled obscene, Cartoon by Krithi Ramaswamy pornographic, or harmful to minors.” Although CIPA is in effect in MCPS schools, there are still ways to get around restrictions. “It may have been two years ago but it is still available but the Montgomery County Libraries grant access to porn sites,” said Liz Columber, an MCPS employee. “I was in the library one day and a gentleman was viewing two different sites at one time. He was watching them in front of children. I filed a complaint and all I got was, ‘We can put up a privacy screen to help avoid other eyes watching.’” Whether it be in schools or libraries, minors are at risk at places seen as safe and educational, a secure environment. There is no educational purpose for students to be exposed to violent or obscene hate sites or pornographic depictions. “It angers me how much is still available to the students,” said Columber. “The kids know how to go behind the walls that have been put into place to get to the sites they are not supposed to go to. There is still constant monitoring of the students but there aren’t enough eyes to go around to catch everything.” While some might argue that censoring all caution labeled websites might be extreme and could get in the way of students’ education, the reason for enforcing these policies is valid. If a student is studying the Second World War and he/she needs to look up information about the Nazi regime but cannot because of the security implications, yes it would interfere with the student’s understanding of this important event in history, but those restrictions are there to deter students from far more dangerous and erroneous information they could receive from hate sites which could advocate Nazi belief and discrimination. Parents trust that their children are not exposed to unacceptable and offensive material; it is the duty of our libraries and schools to guarantee these strict security measures.


Just Because Dress Code is Slack, Doesn’t Mean Pants Should Be More than a few times I’ve witnessed an and loving gaze) at our outfit of choice accident involving one stylishly late girl for the day. Ask yourself: is this really the type of We have a dress code? It’s often easy to and a pair of impossibly and painfully image you’d like to be portraying? Do high heels (of hell). Many of you forget that WJ does, in fact, have a dress I want to be going to school dressed have seen this before. Running, code. Granted, no one knows about it like a hooker-slash-prostitute? Do I running, running and whoop, because enforcing it just isn’t a priority, want that to trigger appreciative down the dame goes. This scene nor does anyone really care. Freedom of may sometimes be accompanied glances from my neighbor in Engexpression, right? by a series of wobbles and lots lish class? Ladies, if the answer What little there is in existence of a of very unladylike cursing. is ‘no’ to any of those quesdress code says that “dress and grooming tions, do us all a favor and are up to the student, except when dress Not to mention this is most definitely a “health hazard.” put on a turtleneck. Gents, and grooming are such that they disrupt She could have broken her a little word of advice from class activity, violate health and safety ankle or caused a massive a female. No matter how standards or are considered inappropritake-down of everyone in great you think you may ate.” But what in this universe determines her direct vicinity. look, generally if we if something is “inappropriate”? So since we don’t really women can see your smiClearly, at this school, nothing is. I just have anyone telling us to covley-face emblazoned boxers don’t see how having your pants swimor (worse) briefs, it’s not ming belt-less around your knees is not er up or pull up or forcefully a turn-on, nor is it even “inappropriate.” Or how having your lift up our various items of clothing, we should really be mildly attractive. So while chest (ladies) nearly falling out of your taking matters into our own you’re glancing into top isn’t a mega distraction to some sehands. When we get up in the that mirror of yours¸ lect gentlemen in the classroom. morning, we should take an please, please jack up Then there’s the question of will wearextra glance (or in severe egoyour pants and tuck ing this potentially give me brain damage? tistical cases, an extremely long away your knickers. Cartoon by Krithi Ramaswamy

By Alexandra Sanfuentes

[ editorial ]


Curveball Tweets From a Lazy Senior

By Colin Buley Hey there. I most likely don’t know you, but I want to be your friend. Because that’s what I’m all about, gettin’ friendly with strangers. Wait, what? That didn’t come out right. Let me start over. I’m Colin. I like playing loud techno music in rush hour traffic and going on spontaneous road trips. I swear mom, we WERE just visiting his brother (Tip: If you’re gonna go somewhere you shouldn’t be, DO NOT use a gas card to pay for gas in said place. Cash doesn’t leave trails. I guess I didn’t watch enough detective movies as a young child.) I, along with my esteemed compatriot Luke Wilson, am this year’s Editors-inChief. People have been known to snap in our position. From Danny Fersh’s affinity for pants removal to David Riva’s Latin fever, history has shown that us EICs often have a screw or two loose. Is that a bad thing? I don’t think so, and in the interest of full disclosure, I’m going to show myself to you. No, not that way you perverts. I’m going to give you a glimpse into my life so that when you need a friend, you can pick up The Pitch and say, “Hey, I bet I’d get along with that guy” or “Wow, what a loser. Glad I’m not him” and feel better. And what better way to get to know me than with my Twitter page that I made exclusively for last Sunday... Plusses – I’m warm, under a blanket, and in no immediate danger. Minuses – Creepy hobo. Decision – Goin’ back to sleep. 7:32 AM Sept. 13 from colinUnoCinco ...This isn’t where I parked my car… 10:41 AM Sept. 13 from colinUnoCinco SquishedBetweenFunnySmellingOldMenOnTheMetroVille, Population: Me. 12:19 PM Sept. 13 from colinUnoCinco ALWAYS make strange noises on metro cars. Hilarity will ensue. 12:41 PM Sept. 13 from colinUnoCinco NEVER go to a little-person convention in a Barney suit. Hilarity will not ensue. 1:34 PM Sept. 13 from colinUnoCinco Made it home. Home, sweet, no-hobos, home. And the Skins game against the Lions starts soon! 2:31 PM Sept. 13 from colinUnoCinco My mom made fajitas...mliAWESOME 4:23 PM Sept. 13 from colinUnoCinco Do fajitas come from Mexico? If so, it totally makes up for that whole swine flu thing. Om nom nom. 5:15 PM Sept. 13 from colinUnoCinco Ohhhh snap! The Lions QB just got ***** up like a *********** on Christmas, collecting ***** whilst riding a **** because he likes it like that. 5:37 PM Sept. 13 from colinUnoCinco Oh censorship, you silly goose, you always make things seem worse than they actually are. 5:38 PM Sept. 13 from colinUnoCinco Crap, I forgot about this thing in my Redskins aided depression. We seriously lost to the Lions? ****. Twitter sucks. I’m deleting this account. 10:49 PM Sept. 13 from colinUnoCinco


[ feature ]



October 2, 2009



October 2, 2009

summer stories from around the world Volume 54 | Issue 3

Jake, Hey man! What’s up? I’m in Vancouver with all of my extended family. It’s crazy; I’ve never even met half of these people. We’ve been doing a lot of different activities though which is cool, and a couple of days ago we went kayaking. It was really tiring and afterwards we really wanted to go to this burger place that was right across the road. But for some reason, the guides put us in cars and sent us to a restaurant that was 20 minutes away. At first, we didn’t mind because this restaurant also had burgers, but when we went to order, they told us that the lunch menu (including the burgers) had ended . . . 20 minutes ago! It was really annoying and we ended up having to go to this fish-n-chips hole in the wall across the street. The food was horrible. But I’m not annoyed anymore because I’m eating a burger right now, while I’m writing to you! Anyways, I hope you’re enjoying your summer. Later,


Volume 54 | Issue 3

6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814


Hey sis, Oh my god, I can’t believe you decided not to come to Pennsylvania! It’s awesome here and, oh my god, guess who I visited yesterday? Josh*! Remember him? He was our neighbor and he moved to Pennsylvania a few years ago. Oh my god, remember how he used to be obsessed with Pokemon cards? He was so funny. But anyways, when I visited him I thought he would be normal now, I mean, he goes to private school and everything. So I was in his room and I decided to open his closet and, oh my god, it was huge! Like, at least five times the size of mine . . . or of any normal girl’s actually. It was completely full of clothes and shoes too. Like, any brand you could name, he would have it in his closet. It was so weird, but he told me that, like, every guy at his private school has a huge closet, too. I so don’t believe him . . . or maybe the big closet symbolizes something else? Like that he hasn’t come out of it yet? Ha, ha, ha just kidding! Wish you were here and hope you’re having fun at home! See you soon, Cathy *Not his real name

[ feature ]

6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814


Hey girl! Wow, Italy is so amazing. The guys here are gorgeous, the sights are so pretty and the food is great. But the portions are so small! It’s crazy. One day, my friend and I were at this restaurant and I ordered the lasagna, but the waiter told me that my friend and I should share it because the lasagna would be enough for three people. We said we were hungry and so I just ordered my own lasagna and she ordered something else. But when the food came out, the amounts were so tiny! The lasagna was definitely not enough for me and my friend’s meal wasn’t enough for her either. We ended up ordering another meal each and the people in the restaurant gave us such weird looks! It was so funny; they would definitely be surprised at portion sizes if they came to the U.S.! Can’t wait to see you when I get home! XOXO, Soukie

“.. be .I r lie ea ve lly Ia c te an it! ’t ”

the e b y a “. . . m et syms big clo somes bolize se? Like l thing e hasn’t e that h ut of it o come yet?”

n o upand, ; s w , u e hr ocs ario” t .I Cr hil ed! . . “ y s lt m wa me it ey th Infographic by Krithi Ramaswamy Photos taken by Celia Karp, Alex Curtis and Kevin Nunez.

Hey Sarah, The most embarrassing thing happened to me yesterday! So, you know, I’m in Argentina with my camp, and you also know that I really don’t speak that much Spanish. Yesterday, we were doing our community service at this construction site and the director of the site (he was so cute!) was showing me how to, like, fling cement at the wall to get it to actually stay on the wall. I was really bad at it and he was explaining it all in Spanish, so I barely understood anything he was saying. When he let me try it on my own, the cement completely fell off the wall and I was totally covered in it instead! I kept trying while the construction worker watched and a little while later, I heard laughing behind me. I didn’t know who they were laughing at so I turned around to see. It was the construction worker’s wife and kid and they were totally laughing at me! It was so embarrassing and all my friends would not stop making fun of me for the rest of the day. I hope your summer’s going well! Write back soon. I wanna know how everything’s going between you and John! Love ya! Amelia

Hey baby, Africa is so cool! But it’s way too much time with just my family and me and I miss you so much! Remember how I tore my ACL a couple weeks ago? Yeah, that was a pretty big problem while we were climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. I got pretty bad altitude sickness at 15,000 feet and I threw up on my Crocs, and, it was hilarious; they melted! I guess it was from my stomach acid or something, which is kind of gross, but it was very funny. I was really excited to finish climbing the mountain but when we got up to 17,000 feet I got sick again and we had to turn around! It sucked and I was really disappointed. We have to hang out when I get home, I got you something and you’ll never guess what it is. I can’t wait to see you! I love you, Nic

Dear Mom, Sorry I haven’t written back until now, but I was waiting for something interesting to happen first. Last night, I went out to dinner with all my friends and counselors and, don’t be mad, but I ate meat! I thought I was gonna die! It was an accident, and it was all my counselor’s fault. He had played a prank on me before saying that a piece of bread was monkey brains, and last night at dinner he told me that a piece of bread was duck liver. Obviously I didn’t believe him and ate the bread anyways. My counselor freaked out and asked me if I was gonna explode. At first, I didn’t know what he was talking about, but then he told me that the bread really was duck liver! I really can’t believe I ate it! Don’t worry though, I’m still a vegetarian and I will never make a mistake like that again! But besides that, China is awesome, I really love it here. How’s everything at home? I hope everyone is good and tell dad I say hi! Love, Jeremy Interviews conducted and put into a letter format by Allison Gordon


[ feature ]



October 2, 2009

sexual predators near wj Volume 54 | Issue 3

For more information about sexual predators, visit

6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814

are you their next target?

The following story is a dramatic retelling from the victim’s perspective By Camilla Yanushevsky “His face, his body was way too close to mine. ‘LOOK AT ME.’ he said. He grabbed my face, put his fingers underneath my chin and pushed his face towards mine. He’d just stare at me and stroke my hand.

“I wanted him to stop. I wanted him to give me some space, but I didn’t want to offend him.” Sixteen-year-old Jane Smith* is a normal WJ student. She works hard in school, participates in extracurricular activities and loves to hang out with her family and friends. Her life was average, until a sexual predator left a scar on her life, forever. “I started babysitting for his family in 2007, every Friday and Saturday, during the night. Because his wife and he came home late at night, I would sleep at their house and in the morning he’d drive me back home,” said Smith. Smith loved her job at first. She got paid $10 an hour and the family, to her, seemed nice. “It was almost like I was part of their family,” said Smith. The scene began to change in 2008 when a strictly business relationship became personal. “A couple of times in 2008 he asked me if I was ever thinking of dating,” said Smith. “And sometimes he’d come into my room without knocking.

“One time I was changing and he barged in. He didn’t close the door. He just stood there.”

The knocking incident wasn’t an isolated one. As the 2008 year came to a close, the 50-year-old man’s feelings for Smith continued to develop. “One day, when I wore short pants, he bent over the seat to stroke my knee,” she said. As much as she wanted to fight back, to stand up for herself, she couldn’t. “I was creeped out; I figured that he was socially awkward, I didn’t think he was interested in me,” said Smith. “I just didn’t want to cause any tensions. I wanted to work so I could save money for college.” Smith, looking back today, understands that she was blind. “He always acted strange when we were alone in the car,” she said. “He would always pat my knee. Once I was wearing stretchy pants and he said, ‘Oh, those look soft.’

“Then, he stroked his hand up and down my thigh.” “I didn’t tell anyone because I didn’t think it was that serious. I just thought that he didn’t really understand the concept of personal space.” But it was the events that took place after two years working there that made it clear to Smith that she was a victim of a sexual predator. It was the first day of the summer. No school, no homework, absolutely nothing for Smith to worry about.

If only she knew what that day had in store. When the father picked her up, she walked to the car, sat in the front seat and was greeted by a huge grin. “You look so hot.You look so beautiful! You look so sexy.” He continued, “ Do you want to be my girlfriend?” Smith, thinking the question was a joke, responded, “Ha, ha, ha, I’m too young.” “Oh no, the age difference isn’t too bad,” he replied. “No, I’m too young, in general.” He, without hesitation, continued the uncomfortable interrogation. “When do you think you’ll start dating?” he asked. “I don’t know. In college.” “Oh college, that’s not too far. That’s only two years. I can wait two years.” Suddenly at the red stop light, he grabbed her hands and said,

“Promise me, promise me, that I’ll be your first boyfriend. You can’t date anyone, you understand? First you call me.”

Ha, ha okay. . .” Smith tried to laugh it off even though his comment was not funny. On the word “okay,” he turned the car in a different direction, off from the usual route. “Where are you going?” Smith asked. “I need to run a few errands,” he said. Smith remained quiet. She wanted to get out of there and quit right away. As she got out her phone, she came to the realization that she couldn’t contact her mom at the very moment. “Whenever I text in the car, he always leans over my shoulder and reads my texts,” she said. Within a few minutes, he had parked the car in front of Barnes & Noble. As he got out of the car, Smith said, “I’m tired. I’m going to stay in the car.” He responded, “No, no, come. I want to show off my girlfriend.” “No, no really,” Smith said. However, the man refused to take no as an answer, and Smith reluctantly agreed to accompany him. As she got out of the car, he put his arm around her and whispered into her ear, “You know, you’re going to be the first girlfriend I’ve ever had. Shhh, it’s a secret. Don’t tell anyone.” After Barnes & Noble, on their way back to the car, the man said to Smith, “So, you’re going to be my girlfriend, but not right now, because that’s what they call ‘illegal,’ right?” Smith responded, “Yeah, they also call it pedophilia.” There was a slight pause. “No, no, that’s not right. Pedophilia is when an adult does sexual acts with a child, but we’re not having sex, right?” He then added, “I’d welcome it if you wanted to, though.” Smith didn’t respond. As they got into his car, the man said with great enthusiasm, “You know, now that we have a pool in our house, you should teach me how to swim.” “Didn’t you say you already know how to swim?” “Oh well, you can still teach me. I’ll pretend I don’t know how.”

On the way to his house, the man drove the car, while trying to hold Smith’s hands. Finally, when Smith caught sight of his house, she hurried out of the car. The man opened the door for Smith as he and his wife left to go to a party. After playing with the kids and putting them to sleep, Smith entered the guest room and was unable to fall asleep. “I just kept re-playing the day over and over in my head,” said Smith. “I thought I was imagining it or making a bigger deal of it than it really was. I haven’t ever really been comfortable with older men.” A similar incident had happened to Smith when she was 13 years old. She was at a jewelry store by herself and in the shop there was an 18-year-old worker who offered to let Smith put on jewelry. He put a long necklace around her neck, and it went down her shirt. The jewelry worker said, “Oh no. The necklace went down. What should I do?” Within several seconds before Smith could realize what he was doing, the jeweler had put his hands under Smith’s shirt, not to get the necklace, but rather to feel her breasts. When Smith pushed the man’s hand away, the worker asked, “Why are you making such a big deal out of nothing?” As all these incidents were playing in the back of Smith’s head as she was trying to fall asleep, she heard the husband and wife arrive home. She looked at the clock and it was nearly 3 a.m. As Smith walked out of her room, the wife asked her, “What happened? You couldn’t sleep?” Smith asked to talk to the wife in private. As they went to a corner, Smith said, “I want to quit.” “Why?” the wife responded. Smith didn’t want to state the real reason because she didn’t want to ruin the couple’s marriage. “I haven’t felt comfortable sleeping here,” Smith said. Although the wife was mad, she drove Smith home at 3 a.m. Reflecting back, Smith said, “I feel stupid. I stayed for so long. I should have quit a lot earlier.” She, however, has learned valuable lessons which she wishes to pass along: “Don’t let people take advantage of you. Never doubt yourself and always show dignity and always in any circumstance, stand up for yourself.”

Student Experiences been followed 41% have on the street 42%have been whistled at been touched 23% have in an unwelcoming, sexual way

been threat16% have ened, physically or verbally, in a sexual way


have done sexual favors so he/she could be socially perceived in a certain way

been harassed 26% have online known 48% have someone who has

been followed on the street

known some57% have one who has been whistled at

known some40% have one who has been

touched in an unwelcoming, sexual way

known some29% have one who has been

threatened, physically or verbally, in a sexual way

known someone 30% have who has done sexual

favors so he/she could be socially perceived in a certain way

known some43%have one who has been harassed online

200 WJ students were surveyed in 10 third period classes from Sept. 15 to Sept. 18.

* not her real name

map of the WJ area

Photo courtesy of Department of Public Safety

The map above indicates sexual predators and offenders in our area. A square represents a child sex offender. A circle represents an offender. An x-mark represents a sexually violent offender. A triangle represents a sexually violent predator.

October 2, 2009


[ arts & entertainment ]


Volume 54 | Issue Volume 3 54 | Issue 3


6400 Rock Spring 6400Drive, Rock Bethesda, Spring Drive, Md.Bethesda, 20814 Md. 20814

Sweet Treat Trends Photo courtesy of

This summer, we welcomed the newfound popularity of two sweet snacks as we witnessed the sudden emergence of shops devoted solely to cupcakes or frozen yogurt. The Pitch’s expert team of food critic(s) staked out the local favorites to bring you the best of the best.


Frozen Yogurt

By Jenny Deutsch


less creamy consistency. The toppings are much more limited as well, providing mostly fruit options. On the plus side, the restaurant is Green Certified.


Situated in Bethesda, Georgetown and Dupont Circle, sweetgreen’s atmosphere is a little bit different than the cheerful, upbeat atmosphere that yogurt Located in Rockville and Washington, addicts have come to love from other lo- D.C., the cute yogurt shop serves nothcal shops. Instead of focusing on yogurt ing but frozen yogurt, unlike sweetgreen, and toppings, sweetgreen takes up a re- which serves both yogurt and salads. They cycling, eco-friendly theme. Green is all have a plethora of toppings that are pleasaround; all of the utensils are made from ing for all moods. From fruit, to candy, corn and are to Yogiberbiodeg radry’s signaable and the ture topping communal piece, mostyle dining chi, which table is made is made of out of recubes of rice cycled wood pudding, the from a bowlhardest part ing alley, of the exaccording perience is to the Web having to desite. Mostly, cide among sweetgreen all the wondiffers from The sweetgreen in Dupont Circle. drous choicPhoto by Sasha Tycko other frozen es. You simyogurt shops, in that it also serves make- ply can’t go wrong.You don’t just have the your-own salads so it is good for a healthy choice among the toppings, but you also dinner and dessert combo. The yogurt can choose the flavor of yogurt. There is is definitely not the focus. There is only berry, green tea, original, and chocolate, one flavor of yogurt (original) which is all which are deliciously sublime. much tangier than Yogiberry and has a

Photo courtesy of

Fancy Cakes by Leslie

only high-end ingredients, has been open for five and a half years serving the Bethesda area. The shop serves a more gourmet array of cupcakes that appeal to a more refined, sophisticated palette. Located off the beaten path on Rugby Av-

It seems like everyone wants to get a taste of this Elm Street, Bethesda treatery, and lately, with celebrities like Pope Benedict and J.Lo ordering their cakes from this bakery, who wouldn’t? These cupcakes pull out all the stops to appeal to a younger audience, using vibrant colors and decorative items like sparkles and scrumptious homemade candy. The most memorable fea- An assortment of cupcakes from Just Cakes. Photo courtesy of ture is the delectable buttery icing on these enue, the shop mostly bakes and designs adorably designed cupcakes. It is pre-ordered cakes, using the cupcake smooth, light and not too sweet, business as a bonus, according to the sales letting the sweetness and flavors of clerk. Unlike Fancy Cakes by Leslie, the morsels of delight do not use flashy colthe cake come through. ors, instead going for simple designs like a slight sprinkling of almonds. The icing was much more stiff, thick and sugary as While the cupcake fad is pretty well, and its sugar overpowered the cake new, this cake shop, which uses a little bit.

Just Cakes

Pitch Picks: Local Events Oct. 3

Crafty Bastards

This annual crafts fair in Adams Morgan will fulfill all your indie needs for distinctive jewelry, funky t-shirts, old books, and other unique goodies. Oct. 3 - Oct. 25

M.D. Renaissance Festival

Oct. 6 - Nov. 19

Oct. 10

Reserve your tickets now for the Free Night of Theater ’09. A variety of theaters are participating, including Folger Theater and Ford’s Theater.

Sample the food of some of DC’s finest restaurants which benefits homeless outreach from the Georgetown Ministry Center.

Free Night of Theater Taste of Georgetown

Dirty Projectors’ newest album Bitte Orca.

Get out your Medieval garb and head over to the 33rd annual Renn Fest in Annapolis. Oct. 4

D.C. Record Fair

Record dealers from up and down the East Coast will be selling their wares at Tenleytown’s Comet Ping Pong, the popular pizza parlor that doubles as a ping pong venue.

Photo courtesy of

Oct. 9- Oct. 18

Solar Decathlon

College students from around the world compete to design and build the most attractive and energy-efficient solarpowered house.

Oct. 22

Dirty Projectors at the

Black Cat With one of the most unique sounds of today’s music, the Dirty Projectors show is not one to miss. Oct. 27

Drag Queen Race

Join thousands of spectators at what is probably the most interesting of pre-Halloween festivities and watch elaborately costumed participants compete in Dupont Circle’s annual ‘Drag Race’on 17th street.



[ arts & entertainment ]


Out of Left Field

Volume 54 | Issue 3

October 2, 2009

6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814

Yo Bloggers, I’mma Let Ya’ll Finish But… My Commentary on the VMA Scandal is the Best of All Time!!!! By Sophie Meade Key:

Taylor Swift Fans KANYE WEST FANZ

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la femme fatale:

embracing your masculine side this fall By Sasha Tycko and Sophie Meade

ten referred to as “biker-chic” , adds hardware such as studs and leather to more delicate materials such as lace. The femme fatale is paradoxical in nature, as her look combines the identities o f two very different female figures in order to achieve some kind of contradictory balance between the two. The ‘40s housewife has taught the ‘80s business-woman that a touch of feminity here and there doesn’t hurt, while the business-woman has told the housewife that if you can’t beat the men, you dress like them. The final product is a fearless power-female who has the confidence to throw on a pair of men’s slacks but knows that her sexy femininity is the strongest of her weapons. sy







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This season’s runways have been graced by a trend that embraced the convergence of two eras to form a new female identity in fashion.The classy housewife of the 1940s has made nice with the executive power female of the 1980s, combining the most feminine of touches with androgynous menswear. The key to achieving this season’s look is creating a contradiction within pieces and ensembles. The belting of a shoulder-padded blazer contrasts an ‘80s -inspired masculine shoulder with classic feminine emphasis of the waist, prominent in the ‘40s. The highwaisted tapered pant also combines the emphasized waist with a structured pant style that reminds us of the female power suit of the ‘80s. Oxford shoes, a staple of classic menswear, have been reinvented with feminine cut-outs and sometimes the addition of a heel. A sub-trend of fall’s leading look, of-


I didn’t find out about the scandal on some MTV awards show involving a black male rapper and white female singer until I was blogsurfing late Sunday night. This is because I feel that I am above popular culture as it relates to MTV and young Disney starlets and therefore I did not watch the VMAs. From what I can gather from people’s reactions, this event is most likely a reflection of the downfall of contemporary society. Mr. Kanye West is either a willing participant in the obvious conspiracy that is this awards show or an oblivious pawn. Either way, the only conclusion I can make upon this scandal is that there is no reason we should trust it. The fact that the world has become so fascinated by this event is a demonstration that we have already fallen to the unseen forces controlling the entertainment industry. Now that they have opened the primary layer to our easily permeated brains, there is absolutely no place for us to hide…


Let me just start by saying, Kanye ain’t nothin but a stunna who can’t be held “accountable” or whatever for what he says or does. Kanye had every right to interrupt Taylor’s speech because, as a black male raised in Chicago, his life has definitely been harder than Taylor’s (white girl). Dissing Kanye because of his courage and individuality is just racist. I wish people could just recognize this event as another one of Kanye’s many contributions to society. Other than his pimpin’ jams, Kanye gave the world stunna shades, fresh kicks, and CAPS LOCK. He has also reached out to the white folk with his ‘indie’ blog. Kanye was the only one to see a problem with Taylor’s unhealthy perspective of the music industry and stepped up to fix it before it was too late. Respect.

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I was practically speechless and almost in tears after watching that awful man take away Taylor’s dream! I can safely say that we have all witnessed the most tragic moment in the history of the music industry since the long and vicious attack on Britney. How dare Kanye West strip Taylor of her spotlight, and not only that, her innocence! Kanye might as well have snatched Taylor’s guitar from her when she learned to play it at age three. He might as well have aborted her before her talent made it out of the womb (I’ve heard that Taylor’s mom could hear fetus-Taylor singing from inside her pregnant stomach). The best we can all do in a time like this is to send Taylor fan mail everyday and tag her in all our Twitter posts. Stay strong Taylor! (I am throwing away my Kanye glasses!)

Photo cour

Apathetics/Conspiracy Theorists In the moments after watching Kanye West interrupt Taylor Swift’s acceptance speech at the VMAs, my mind swirled with commentary that begged to be released into the world. However, for fear of offending any reader, or rather, in the effort to appeal to each reader’s personal fiber, I decided it was best to organize my feelings in the most logical and rational way. I have achieved superiority to any other blog or column, as my commentary relates to each class of the media-consuming public. For best results, please read the section that adheres to your personal identification type using the key at the top. In the case that an opinion within the column offends you, please refer back to your section.

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October 2, 2009



Athletes of the Month Volume 54 | Issue 3

Anna Bosse

Photo by Alex Curtis

Bosse on her way to a strong finish against Northwest.

By Parker Smith Junior Anna Bosse is fast. So fast, in fact, that she was named Gatorade MD Runner of theYear after winning the individual cross country 4A state championship last year. Despite her individual success this year, Bosse’s goals are team-oriented. “I really like the team aspect,” said Bosse. “We’re all really close. This year I want to help the girls team win states.” In the winter of last year, Bosse sprained her ankle while playing basketball. She struggled to rebound from the injury and reach her own standards of success in the spring track season. “I was out a little over a month,” said

Bosse. “But, I’ve been running over the summer and I’m totally healthy now” In their pre-season poll, MoCoRunning ranked Bosse as the No. 2 female cross country runner in Montgomery County. And so far, Bosse has lived up to the hype. Bosse began the season on Sept. 8 by taking part in the Woodward Relays. Bosse ran with junior Camille Bouvet, and together they took first place by nearly a minute. Bosse’s mile times were 6:18, 6:35 and 6:20. What’s more, it was released that the track was slightly more than a mile. According to MoCoRunning, “The extra length of the loop added approximately 15 seconds to the mile for a typical boy and 20 seconds for a typical girl.” If this is accurate, Bosse’s mile times would have been 5:58, 6:15 and 6:00. On Sept. 11, in a cold, rainy environment, Bosse took first place in the Howard County Invitational, running the standard cross country event: a non-stop 3-mile race. Bosse ran a 20:27 3-mile, and took first place once again. After her impressive performance, MoCoRunning named Bosse as female Runner of the Week. Then the head-to-head meets began, and Bosse continued to excel. She ran a 19:35 against Damascus and placed first to open the conference schedule. This all leads up to the state championships. She’ll face considerable odds, as she goes up against the best runners in the country, but her coach has confidence. “She likes to prove people wrong,” said Martin.

[ sports ]


6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814

Nick Castro

By Jennifer Spencer

Few people can say that they made a varsity team as a freshman. Even fewer can say they made varsity on a team that would go on to win a state championship that season. Senior striker Nick Castro can say both. As a team captain, Castro has taken it upon himself to be a leader. “The years before I just came to the team and did my part, but this year I have to go beyond that,” said Castro. Players on the team already knew he was skilled. They have come to realize though that he also possesses strong leadership qualities. “Nick is a great player,” said sophomore Harrison Gibert. “He leads by example. He rarely does anything wrong.” His leadership ability has developed over the years. Having the opportunity to play on such a strong team his freshman year has assisted this progression. He knows the amount of hard work and commitment it took to reach states. “I had the opportunity of playing with great players with more experience that I learned from,” said Castro. Despite the fact that Castro has taken on a larger role this season, his own play has not suffered in the least. Castro uses his quickness and foot skills to score and rack up assists. “He has been playing fabulous since day one,” said coach Mike Williams. “He has an incredible intelligence of the game and is very unselfish.” Castro’s work ethic has helped him to reach such a high level of play. Out-

Photo by Celia Karp

Castro has played a major part in the team’s three wins this season.

side of school he also plays for Real MD F.C., allowing him to train year-round and continue to improve. Like most seniors, Castro has also had to consider where he will attend college next year. For Castro, soccer is something he is excited to continue with in college. In the mean time, the bar is set high for this young Wildcat team. After being eliminated in the playoffs last year, the team looks to go further this season. Castro hopes to lead the team all the way to the top. “The main goal we all have this season is to win states,” said Castro. “There is nothing I don’t like about soccer except losing.”



[ sports ]


Volume 54 | Issue 3

Cross Country Continues Run for Repeat State Title

Girls Soccer Looks to Rebound After 2season progressed, the Wild4-1 Start to Season catsAsfacedtheSherwood on Sept. 17. WJ was By Kathleen Seale

By Alex Spinard

As one of WJ’s most successful sports teams, cross country goes into the new season with big aspirations. In their second meet of the season, the Howard County Invitational held at Centennial High School on Sept. 11, the team demonstrated its ability to repeat as 4A State Champions for the boys, and win first for the girls team, which returns all of its starting runners. Coach Tom Martin feels this goal is well within the team’s reach. “They will need to concentrate on hill work, which dominates the state course,” he said. In cross country, varsity varies from meet to meet. Usually however, the top five or top seven will comprise the varsity. Seasoned runners, including senior Sean O’Leary and junior Alex Willett, top off a strong starting five for the boys team. The one concern of Martin is closing the time gap between the top five and the number six and seven men, sophomore Josh Ellis and junior Nick Regan. “By closing this gap it will give us some insurance in case one of our top five boys takes a fall,” said Martin. Nearing the halfway point into the season, the team is facing practices with more intensity than the team experienced last year, according to junior runner Camille Bouvet, one of the staples to the returning girls squad. “A normal practice for the team is

October 2, 2009

6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814

Photo by Alex Curtis

O’Leary leads the boys team as they try to defend their 2008 4A Boys State Championship.

five repeats of one-mile intervals at a hard tempo pace,” said Bouvet. The two major goals for both the boys and girls teams are to win states and improve practice attendance. Bouvet, along with defending 2008 4A State Champion junior Anna Bosse and seniors Jenna Willett and Jennifer Spencer have finished all within seconds of each other at every meet, which should prove beneficial to the team’s championship run. Some major meets coming up for the team include the Octoberfest Invitational tomorrow in The Plains, VA, and Manhattan Invitational in New York on Oct. 10.

It’s a new team, a new coach and a brand new year. The girls soccer team lost eight of their players to graduation last year. The team also started off the 2009 season with a new coach, Liz Friedman. Senior forward Catherine Madden believes that although last year’s seniors are truly missed, they are still replaceable. “They always played well and did their part [for the team], but I think we have people who can fill their spots and do what they did,” said Madden. Their first game, on Sept. 8, was a tough 6-2 loss against Wootton. But the annual Big Train Tournament on Sept. 12 brought out the best side of the girls, as they beat Damascus and Northwest to win the tournament. “It was great,” said senior forward Chaucia Sydnor. “We were all talking. Ever since the first goal was scored against Damascus, everyone played to their fullest potential.” The girls tried to ride the winning streak into their Sept. 15 matchup against B-CC. The first half of the game went slow, with neither WJ nor B-CC being able to get the ball in the goal. During the second half, sophomore striker Dani Armstrong scored to put WJ in the lead, 1-0. Soon after the goal, B-CC came back, scoring against senior goalkeeper Kasey Carroll who broke her hand while diving to try to save the ball. The Wildcats kept the game tied in regulation until the game was called into overtime, where the Barons struck to end the tough, hard-fought game with a 2-1 loss.

able to get in a goal early, but Sherwood ended up scoring later, leaving the game at a 1-1 tie after a scoreless overtime. After the B-CC and Sherwood games, WJ was determined to win their first game since the Big Train Tournament, in their Sept. 22 game vs. Whitman. However, the team’s offense struggled all game, and it only took one goal by Whitman to seal a 1-0 win for the Vikings. Even though they were upset with their losses, the girls prepared for the game against Churchill with enthusiasm. Friedman was the assistant coach of the Bulldogs team last year. “I’m most looking forward to playing Churchill because of Liz,” said Madden. Before the Churchill game, the Wildcats awaited the opponents to arrive at the new stadium. With a confident mindset, the girls took the field believing that there was a chance they could win against the Bulldogs. Twenty-six minutes into the first half, the Bulldogs managed to get their first goal, on junior goal keeper Jessica Goldstone. Shaking it off, the Wildcats tried to come back with multiple shots, but they were unsuccessful. By the second half, the Bulldogs scored another goal, clinching the 2-0 victory for Churchill. After the first five games of the season, the girls have had many chances, but haven’t had the chance to dominate goalwise in games. “I think we have to put the effort in at practices,” said Madden. “When we relax and everyone is able to play a whole game and give all they have when they play, then a win will come.”

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[ sports ]


Volume 54 | Issue 3

6400 Rock Spring Drive, Bethesda, Md. 20814

Varsity Sports Fall Update By Cami Keyani

Girls Volleyball

Starting the season 6-0, this year’s volleyball team has blown competition out of the water. The team has started the season strong, only losing one set all season. This includes wins over crosstown rivals Whitman and B-CC. Such success is something that coach Bill Morris thinks can be continued by both teams. “It’s early on in the season to call, but I know they have the ability,” said Morris. Still, dedication might not be the only thing pushing the girls to their best. New equipment and a change in the delineation about the basketball court and the volleyball court have helped greatly.

The team has received new volleyballs which is a very important upgrade from last year. In addition, they have received a new automated ball shooter. It isn’t the most accurate machine, however, and can cause problems during practice. Senior Anna Elder gives a mixed review. “It makes practices a lot harder and more stressful because of its unpredictability,” said Elder. “But at the same time, it has helped everyone improve our passing.” Along with this new equipment helping the girls’ success, they have put in a lot of practice. The team looks to continue their undefeated season at home against Churchill on Oct. 7 and at Northwest on Oct. 9.

Girls Tennis

Golf: A Game Almost as Rich as its Patrons By Mateo Williamson

Photo by Julia Haymore

Freshman Kristen Larrick spikes the ball against a Springbrook player.


By Cami Keyani

By Jennifer Spencer

The girls tennis team has started the season with a 7-2 record, the lone losses coming against Churchill on Sept. 22 and B-CC on Sept. 29. Last year, the girls lost to only three teams, Wootton, Whitman and Churchill. With this loss to Churchill, the girls are looking to finish the season strong to avenge the two losses from last year. Coach Mike Laukaitis says his hopes and aspirations are for his team to do their best. “It’s not just about winning matches, it’s about playing better as a team throughout the line up,” he said. “Of course I would like a victory in these matches, but more importantly I would like our team to be competitive.” The team’s schedule gives them plenty of time to prepare for what could be the team’s biggest matches left for the season, Whitman on Oct. 6 and Wootton on Oct. 8. Wins in these two matches could solidify the team as a state title contender.

The young Wildcats team showed promise placing fifth out of 25 teams at the co-ed district tournament. Juniors Oliver Vickery shot a 79 and James Lillie shot an 81 to qualify for the state tournament on Oct. 19. Vickery and Lillie along with freshman Evan Shapiro received invitations to play in the first annual Montgomery County Revenue Invitational Tournament on Oct 7. Like all teams in their division, consistency in scoring was something that would enable the team to be successful. “I knew if the team could reduce the [bogies] by as little as eight or nine strokes per match during the last three matches they would be very competitive,” said coach Richard Payne. The progression of the team has been obvious to senior captain Sam Coe. Struggling towards the start, the last few matches proved that the team has a bright future. “In our last match, our team score was the lowest it has been in two years,” said Coe.

Boys Soccer Fights For Position Among the 4A West Elite Teams

By Zach Gordon



the 2007 4A state champion Magruder wins against arch-rivals Whitman and In the last three years, the boys soccer on Oct.19. All three of those schools have Churchill, 1-0 and 5-0, respectively. team has had a strength on the offensive been talked of competing for this years’ “After the first three losses we have side of the ball. The team has graduated state title. Coach Mike Williams believes become a lot closer as a team,” said Marplayers like Lucas Szabo two years ago, the county fields some of Maryland’s best shall. ”We know that we are capable of now the leading point scorer for NCAA teams. beating any team in the county.” Division 1 Marist College, and Pablo “It doesn’t matter where you go in the Heading into the end of their schedule, Torrano, the team’s offensive star last county now, there is quite a bit of talent,” with tougher games ahead, the team is year who earned All-Gazette honors and said Williams. trying to get back on track. Early in the was named a Maryland All-State player. The tough schedule has led to a 2-4 re- season, the team’s inexperience showed Now, it is senior captain Nick Cas- cord so far this season. The team jumped through inconsistent play. The team was tro’s turn to anchor the offensive core this year. Castro has been on the varsity team since his freshman year, the only remaining player from the 2006 4A state championship team. On the defensive side of the ball, senior captain Matt Wojnar, fellow defenders seniors Daniel Kirwan and Nico Deandreis, along with senior goalie Johnny Marshall, provide leadership to a strong defensive group. The gaps left by the graduating seniors last year provide an opportunity for the young team to succeed Senior Goalie Johnny Marshall has not allowed a goal in the past three games. Photo by Celia Karp this season. “We lost a lot of key players from last right into divisional play, losing 2-1 at able to defeat last year’s state champion, year, but now we have a young team Wootton on Sept. 8. At the annual Sher- but struggled against B-CC and Wootwith a lot of potential,” said Deandreis. wood Invitational Tournament on Sept. ton, who were both not projected to be “I think we have filled the holes left by 12, the team started off by beating Bow- very competitive in the division. Howthe seniors really well so far.” ie, last year’s 4A state champion, 3-1, fol- ever, the team’s true potential may have If the team is to find success this sea- lowed by a 3-2 loss to Marriotts Ridge been shown against Churchill and Whitson, they will first have to fight in the less than three hours later. man, wins that could give the team movery competitive 4A West Division. The In their Sept. 15 matchup against B-CC, mentum heading into the final stretch. team has already faced Sherwood, who a team who rose to 4A this season after “We have a really solid team right now,” dethroned the Wildcats in the second many seasons in 3A, the team fell be- said Deandreis. “I think we have a really round of last year’s state playoffs, and hind early and never came back, losing good chance to do some serious damage faced arch-rival Churchill. The tough 2-1. After their Sept. 17 loss to Sher- throughout the rest of the season.” schedule also includes a matchup with wood, 1-0, the team rebounded with two

Before this summer, I had planned out my June, July and August perfectly. I was going to fill my schedule with sleep, partying and Chipotle. Lots and lots of Chipotle. The only problem was that I had to find a way to pay for my Chipotle binges (I don’t have a problem, okay?). My options were simple. Either I’d rob a store (Smoothie King seemed like a viable option), or get a job. Considering Smoothie King didn’t show up on Google maps, I decided to go job searching. And just like that, I was hired at Bethesda Country Club as an employee in the golf room. My job was simple: clean golf clubs, wash carts and maintain the driving range. I needed no knowledge whatsoever of the game of golf, but being the motivated employee that I am, I decided to search “golf ” on Wikipedia. Apparently, “golf is a precision club-and-ball sport in which competing players (golfers) sing ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’ LOLOLOL.” It sounded legit enough for me. I’ve worked in the golf room for roughly three months now, and have gained a new appreciation for the sport. In order to remember all my golf experiences, I kept a memo pad at all times on the job. Armed with my hands-on experience and printed-off pages of, I have decided to publish my firsthand accounts on what the average day of golf is really like. June 18, 2009 14:37—I talked to Mr. Dufek today about his golf game. He told me he shot a 37 on the front nine. I didn’t know whether or not that was good or bad, so I just nodded and said, “good for you.” June 27, 2009 08:11—Mrs. Connors, an elderly lady, was driving her golf cart down the path, when she pulled up on the curb in front of the golf room, hit a stone column and went airborne into shrubbery. I’m not sure whether I should call for help, laugh or continue reflecting on the moment . . . June 28, 2009 15:13—So I’m told that Mrs. Connors lost some feeling in the left side of her body, but the good news is that she’s all right! July 9, 2009 11:07—According to Dr. Stallman, a golfer who happens to be a renowned psychiatrist, I suffer from “Dissociative Personality Disorder,” also known as multiple personality disorder. I have mixed feelings on this one. July 22, 2009 16:00—A bunch of the members just got back from a long day of golfing. I just cleaned their cart, which happened to overflow with empty beer cans. I can’t really tell if they were playing golf, or playing the drinking game “shotgun-a-beer-when-someone-hits-the -ball.” Golf seems more and more like fishing for rich people.               August 4, 2009 13:19—I wonder what it would be like if they constructed a giant windmill in the middle of the green on the 14th hole. Now that would be interesting. August 24, 2009 09:44—I was cleaning up the putting green, when I noticed a putter and ball sitting in front of one of the pins. I picked up the putter, hit the ball, and proceeded to go “na-nuh-nuhnuh-nuh-nuh-nuh.” I need to see Caddyshack again.

Cross Country Dominates 16

Sports W i l d c a t

October 2, 2009

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pg. 14

New Coach, New Attitude

By Colin Buley and Mateo Williamson

“Football is a team sport. There are no individuals. It’s really about respecting yourselves and your teammates. Every time you step onto the field, you take your opponent seriously and you show them the same respect that you do yourself. Football is about pride, it’s about discipline and it’s about respect.” -Head Coach Jon Kadi One word can sum up the varsity football team’s new frame of mind: family. Where last year there was discord; this year cooperation has become the team’s new focus. Where last year there was division, this year unity has become crucial. “Coach Kadi brings the team closer together,” said senior co-captain Michael Pitsenberger. “We can all talk to each better this year. The communication is better.” There have been many changes to the team since last year, most notably the departure of last year’s head coach, Tom Mulholland, and the promotion of Kadi from assistant coach to head coach. The team has also adjusted to many new faces on the coaching staff, including current teachers Tom Rogers and Butch Worden (who coached the football team to an 82 season in 1999) who have both joined and integrated into the team. With the team becoming more closeknit this season, they are able to work more efficiently on other areas of their game. Conditioning has been a major focal point in this year’s practices and the players are noticing the benefits. “Last year, the conditioning was kind of lackadaisical,” said senior defensive end Sam Lichtman. “This year, [coach Kadi] is really pushing us to the max. I think it has helped the team on the field. We’re able to keep our starters in the entire game

the whole season. The only problem is everybody’s getting injured this year.” Decimated by nagging injuries to several key players, (Pitsenberger, Lichtman, senior co-captain Tristan Plunkett and junior offensive lineman Tyler Phelps have all been hurt at some point this season), and the team has pulled up several players from the junior varsity team in order to accomplish everything they have to in practice. “We can’t do our drills full speed or hit each other in practice if we don’t have enough guys,” said Kadi. “It hurts us when we try to practice and we’re missing guys to injury. Last week, we were missing seven or eight guys on average each in practice, which showed in the game against Gaithersburg.” But despite the setbacks the injuries have caused, the team is revved up and ready to go for tonight’s homecoming game against Poolesville. After tasting victory for the first time in 36 games last year against Poolesville, the team looks to repeat history by beating them again for their first win of the season.

Photo by Kevin Nuñez

Kadi and the Wildcats look to get their first win of the season tonight against Poolesville.

Notorious 36-game losing streak is broken as team defeats Poolesville 40-15 on Oct. 17, 2008

Mulholland Dismissed in Spring of 2009

One-loss Field Hockey Enters Second Half of Season with Regional Title Aspirations By Sasha Tycko Starting off with a record of 5-1, the varsity field hockey team is on its way to what looks to be a promising season and potentially a regional championship win. “I expect great things from them,” said coach Erika Murray. “It is a very talented group of girls who really know the game.” In the first two games of the season, the team shut out its opponents, winning 4-0 against Northwest and 9-0 against Einstein. Goals were well-distributed with six players scoring against Einstein, including senior co-captain forward/mid Georgina Beven, senior forward/midfielder Flor Martinez and junior forward Alexis Wang. “We have really fast forwards and our defense is just really solid so together, we’re a really good team,” said junior cocaptain defender Dana Marks. The team beat Damascus in a narrow

overtime victory 2-1, with both goals scored by Martinez and assists by Beven. WJ lost to B-CC in overtime 2-1, with sophomore mid/forward Hannah Flesch and Martinez scoring. B-CC, a team that has claim to 13 3A state titles, is new to 4A after a reclassification of the state divisions. In this dramatic shift, last year’s state finalist Quince Orchard moved down to the 3A. With Quince Orchard out of the division, BCC is regarded as the team to beat for the 4A championship. With some of the more formidable opponents coming up, including Whitman and Churchill, the team will have some things to work on. “We need to work on finishing at goal,” said Beven. “We’re always really close but don’t always come up with a goal when we should be getting goals every time we’re in the circle. We also need to work

Kadi promoted from assistant coach to head coach in Summer 2009

In Kadi’s debut as head coach and in the new stadium’s inaugural football game, Rockville rallies to defeat WJ 26-10 on Sept. 4, 2009

on our communication, when it works we always play a lot better together.” After a team meeting at the beginning of the season, the team decided on a goal of winning the regional championship. The team made it to the regional finals last year but lost to Photo by Kevin Nuñez Quince Orchard. Junior defender Sarah Blad is part of a defense that has allowed less than The Gazette ranked one goal per game this season. WJ as fourth in the county after B-CC, “We need to play up above them so we Springbrook and Whitman. can win which works so far.” “We always need to work on just keepThe team plays at Richard Montgoming our skills up and playing above, play- ery tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. and plays ing WJ field hockey instead of down to Churchill at home on Oct. 7. the level of our opponent,” said Marks.

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