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Volume XIV, Issue 5 May 2021

Viking magazine

BUTLER

2021

KIM

UPPERCLASSMEN oF THE YEAR p. 24

Looking Back

YEAR IN REVIEW

p.

42


Viking magazine

would like to thank our sponsors... The Shah Family

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E-mail us at vikingeds@gmail.com Go to vikingsportsmag.com

on the cover:

An homage to our seniors, this issue’s cover is a collage of our class of ‘21 along with our upperclassman athletes of the year. Photos by Jenna Hickey, Lacrosse team photo courtesy of Kent Seki 2

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LINEUP

Zooms

4

Intro Package

12

Senior Year Rookies

15

Mascots vs Mascnots

18

Girls Team of the Year

20

Boys Team of the Year

22

Girls Upperclassman of the Year

24

Boys Upperclassman of the Year

26

Girls and Boys Underclassman of the Year

28

Alok Subbarao Sportsmanship Award

30

Season Recaps

32

Top 10 and Bottom 5 Class of ‘21 Moments

36

Class of 2021 Recruit Map

40

Looking Back

42

The Final Word

47 Locked in: Madeline Lohse ’21 beats out her defenders to the ball during Paly varsity field hockey’s game. (Photo by Jenna Hickey) @vikingsportsmag

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Photo by Grace Li

Splashin’ Season

The boys varsity water polo team had been performing well in league before a rough patch in mid May where they lost three consecutive league games. The team looks to capitalize on crucial games down the stretch to close out the season strong.

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Photo by Grace Li

New Recruits

The boys lacrosse team has had a strong season despite a few challenging losses to league rival Los Gatos. Luckily, the squad has had an impressive recruiting year with underclassmen and looked primed to challenge the Cats in the years to come.

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Photo by Grace Li

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Up and Coming Burton Liu (‘24) pitched on Wednesday, May 12, against Mountain View, where Paly won 7-2. Liu has been playing since he was eight years old and recently joined the Paly team. After strong outings on the mound this year he looks primed for an impressive career with the Vikings. @vikingsportsmag

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Viking

Volume XIV, Issue 5 May 2021

Viking Magazine Palo Alto High School 50 Embarcadero Road Palo Alto, CA 94301 650-329-3837 Email contact: vikingeds@gmail.com Follow us @vikingsportsmag or go to vikingsportsmag.com for current game updates/scores. Viking, a sports magazine published by the students in Palo Alto High School’s Advanced Magazine Journalism class, is an open forum for student expression and the discussion of issues of concern to its readership. The Viking is distributed to its readers and the student body at no cost. The staff welcomes letters to the editor, but reserves the right to edit all submissions for length, grammar, potential libel, invasion of privacy and obscenity. Advertising in Viking The staff publishes advertisements with signed contracts providing they are not deemed by the staff inappropriate for the magazine’s audience. For more information about advertising with The Viking, please contact the The Viking by email at vikingeds@gmail.com Printing Services 2,500 copies of The Viking are printed, six times a year (barring restrictions due to remote learning) by Folger Graphics in Hayward, Calif.

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Logo Font Courtesy of Måns Grebäck

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Letter From the EDITORS What’s up Vikings!

Believe it or not, we’ve made it to the last few weeks of school! It seems like just yesterday that our first issue was released, but we’ve now reached our fifth and final issue of Viking for the 20202021 school year. This issue marked the first cycle led by the new leadership team, and we are so excited to bring you a close to Paly sports. It’s honestly been a wild ride running Viking from our homes. Nonetheless, we had an amazing time covering Paly sports, and we hope you enjoyed all of the new content we created. This year, Viking’s youtube channel saw the addition of not one, but TWO Viking Podcasts that were created by some of our seniors. Over

the course of our five issues, we profiled countless unique athletes around Paly and even tackled some hot topic issues such as the state of Paly athletics during the pandemic. We think everyone can agree that this year was filled with a lot of...unique... changes. One of the biggest adjustments was the condensed sports seasons, which posed many benefits, but also a lot of challenges. Check out our editorial to hear our take on this! On a more bittersweet note, this final issue is dedicated to the class of ‘21, as they go off to achieve their post-high school plans. To start, our feature story gave the senior class a chance to give one final goodbye. You’ll get to see seniors in a variety of sports reflect on their four years at Paly. Our long-awaited recruitment map takes a look at the killer

athletes that are continuing their athletic careers at various colleges across the whole country (some of these athletes are our very own Viking staff members!) Finally, Viking honored all the amazing Paly athletes and teams that have been exemplars of the Viking spirit on and off the field. Check out our 2021 awards for Team of the Year, Athlete of the Year, and sportsmanship! Well, it looks like that’s it. Thank you Vikes, for sticking along for the ride. We hope you enjoy our final hurrah, and we’ll see you again in the fall!

Hailey Callan David Gormley Greg Laursen Madhu Ramkumar

Staff View:

Condensed Seasons As a player who got an extra season of one sport and had CCS title hopes dashed by the condensed schedule in another, I have a unique perspective on the new seasons format. The past year has been an exercise in the ebbs and flows of hope as an athlete. Seasons were suddenly introduced, then postponed, then brought forth again. Playoffs would be out of the question. Or would they? I’ve learned to see hope as a double-edged sword; to believe that something will happen brings positivity, but you position yourself for more frustration when it doesn’t. At points I’ve adopted a nothing-will-happen attitude to shield myself from dashed hopes. At others I feel the only way to position yourself for success is to believe that you

will be given the chance to achieve it. This portrayal paints sports as a burden, but despite the uncertainty they brought, they were the perfect outlet. They were everything that online school wasn’t. They were a change of pace from empty rooms in front of a screen. They were a place to go to with a purpose. A chance for real interaction. Even at times when the season itself seemed unlikely, practices were refuge. The eventual condensed season proposal brought, just as everything else had, a mixed bag of emotions. Players don’t sacrifice everything to not play in the playoffs, a restriction from the new schedule, but then again, they don’t sacrifice to only practice. Conversations about the value or

detriment of condensed seasons are aplenty, with arguments about equity vs. equality of spring and fall sports. Frustration with the lack of playoffs for my primary sport was my initial reality, but the chance to have semblance of both seasons to train and celebrate with the seniors has been a joy for me. High school athletics in a pandemic has been a lesson in making the most of the opportunities that are granted. A condensed season is simply an alteration on available opportunities, and I’ve found value in focusing on what is there rather than what isn’t.

@vikingsportsmag

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Pop Culture Grid Best Part of Summer

Favorite Hype GOAT teacher Song

Will Thomas Firing Up ‘21 Lacrosse the Grill

Baseball Sophia Krugler ‘21 Volleyball

Soul Survivor - Akon

Coach Halas

I dont know

Rollin’ - Limp Bizkit

Mr. Halas

Nails

Truth Hurts or any Taylor Swift

Freedom

Backpacking

Pre Workout

A-Punk

Mattes

Mr. Ferrera

Banana and PB

Burrito and Milkshake

Future Plans

Professional Skim Boarder Bowman Wingard ‘21 Baseball Zoologist

USC for computer engineering & science Gretchen Berndt ‘21 Cal Poly Track SLO

Class of ‘21 Throwback to Freshman Year!

Ryan Harvey Baseball

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Carly Martin Basketball

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Chris Chen Soccer

Anna Roth Lacrosse


10 Questions With Catherine Reller

Viking Magazine had the chance to ask water polo player Catherine Reller (‘21) 10 questions. We then asked her coach, teammate and friend what they thought she said. Here are their responses...

as told to Eve Degeromino and Hana Erickson

Catherine Reller ‘21 Water Polo

Deke Rowell Coach

Grace Lindstrom ‘21 Teammate

Audrey Joachim ‘21 Friend

Questions Flexible Upper Lip

Secret Talent

Water spouts with her mouth as she scores

Really Long Tounge

Ladle Tounge

Robert Pattinson

Celebrity Crush

Judd Nelson from”The Breakfast Club”

Guy from “Ginny and Georgia”

Ralph Lauren

Los Altos

Favorite Team to Play

Paly

Altos

Los Altos

Wrist Curls

Best Dumbbell Exercise

15 lbs wrist curls

Wrist Curls

I don’t even have an example of one

Birkenstocks

Best Shoe

Game day gold sandals or flats

Birkenstock

Birkenstock

Sun Bum Mineral

Best Sunscreen

Sun Bum

Sun Bum

Sun Bum

2 min on a good day

Holding breath?

Long time..part mermaid

Gunn

Worst pool in SCVAL

Los Gatos

Gunn

Pencil Dive

Go-to Diving Board Move

Cannon Ball

Triple Backflip

Def Cannonball

Fox

Favorite Animal Noise

Dolphin

Bark

Tanuki

30%

50%

30%

1 min 39 sec

@vikingsportsmag

3 minutes Jordan? Not well versed in pool quality

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Heidi MacIntosh Senior, Lacrosse

Neel Fulton Senior, Cross Country

Lexi Gwyn Senior, Field Hockey

Aidan Rausch Senior, Basketball

Charlize Nguyen Senior, Cheerleading

Senior SenDOFF After such a challenging past year, the Paly athletic community has to say goodbye to an extremely talented and athletic class. The senior athletes in the class of 2021 have worked so hard to make the most of their last athletic year at Paly under safe circumstances, and it has been heartwarming to experience. Here is the class of 2021 captured on film. All photos by Jenna Hickey.

Drew Mukherjee Senior, Football Paige Thomas Senior, Swimming Rachel Owens Senior, Tennis

Leo Malchin Senior, Soccer Joey Edmonds Senior, Water Polo

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senior year

ROOKIES by VIJAY HOMAN, LIAM NAGESH AND TYLER STOEN

The majority of high school athletes were introduced to their sports years before they joined the team through club or recreational programs. In other cases, players pick up a sport during their freshman or sophomore years and work to quickly build their skills to compete at a higher level. While it is a rare occurrence for a senior to enter into a new sport, the introduction of condensed seasons this spring has created an influx of seniors who wanted to try a few months of something new in their final semester at Paly. These senior “rookies” bring both a veteran and newbie presence to teams, and can contribute to the squads in unique ways.

Photo by Jenna Hickey

Drew Mukherjee (second from left) with his new team post-game

Photo by Jenna Hickey

Senior Diego Mazzon surges through the water in his main sport of swimming at SCVAL Champs

Photo by Jenna Hickey

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DIEGO

MAZZON WATER POLO ‘ROOKIE’

O

ne of such players is Diego speed and endurance in order to improve manage the team. It lets you get closer Mazzon (‘21), a swimmer your times. In other words, you’re with the lower classmen since it makes who added water polo swimming for yourself. The success of you less intimidating when you are to his repertoire this year the team is still of great importance, inexperienced.” after joining the varsity team. He has however, to do this, swimmers improve At the end of the day, playing a new long found success in the pool both individually. Whereas in water polo, the sport is not for everyone. Many want swimming club with Alto Swim Club and team looks to improve as a group, and with the Paly team, where he qualified for individual success means nothing to the his third consecutive CCS in his signature team. event, 100 Breaststroke, this past season. “It seemed like a lot of fun to be a part I’ve been feeling a little However, the endless grind that of a team environment and… burnt out from swimming swimming entails can senior year is supposed to Photo by Jenna Hickey become mentally and be fun,” Mazzon said. and I’ve always wanted physically taxing For Mazzon, the when you are in switch to water to play polo so I gave it a the pool over polo was easier shot. 15 hours a than it would -Diego Mazzon ‘21 week. be for many. “I’ve been His two feeling a sports have little burnt a similar to hone their skills on a sport they’ve out from played their entire life, or prepare for an swimming upcoming collegiate season. However, and I’ve trying something new obviously has it’s a l w a y s benefits. wanted to relationship “I definitely recommend it,” Mazzon play polo so I as running said. “Even though you may not be great, gave it a shot.” and soccer: it is fun to be there at practice and be a Mazzon said. those who are part of the community.” Transitioning to fast tend to a sport like water do well. For this polo can alleviate reason, Mazzon’s some of this burnout for swimming background a number of reasons. While the gave him a head start compared sport still requires a high level of physical to other newcomers and allowed training, a large portion of practices him to keep up more easily at the are spent on shooting and offensive beginning of the season. drills which adds a lighter and more Another change that Mazzon has interesting component to training. A experienced has been in leadership. new sport is also a change of pace and On the swim team, Mazzon is a leader scenery with new teammates, new goals, as a senior to his teammates, but when and lots to learn. competing in water polo, he becomes “I’ve been really impressed with just another player. While some [Diego’s] eagerness to learn about the would lament this return to feeling new aspects of the game," teammate like a rookie, Mazzon found that the David Gormley ('22) said. “It’s clear he change led to a more relaxed attitude legitimately wants to get better”. that matched what he wanted from his Additionally, the group component second semester of senior year. of the sport is a welcome change from “It’s definitely different from swimming. With swimming, you are swimming but it was also a refresher constantly working on your individual to sit back and let the captains Photo Courtesy of Emma Sing |

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DREW

MUKHERJEE FOOTBALL ‘ROOKIE’

While Mazzon explored a new sport primarily Photo by Jenna Hickey for fun, Drew Mukherjee (‘21) changed sports as a senior for safety concerns. Mukherjee, a longtime member of the Paly varsity soccer team, decided to pick up football during his last year at Paly. The reason for his switch was simple: he needed to protect his body. After tearing his meniscus in the offseason after his junior year, Mukherjee underwent his third knee surgery in just two years, something that is almost unheard of among high football, like wearing all the gear and school athletes. thinking about playcalls,” Mukherjee “Once I recovered, I figured I should said. stop playing soccer at least for the Nevertheless, Mukherjee’s senior moment to protect my knees,” Mukherjee status and his past experience playing said. for other Paly sports teams gave him the Regardless, he was still committed confidence he needed to find success on to participating in a Paly sport. He had a new field. always been an avid football fan, and saw “The fact that I'm a "veteran" to high kicking as an opportunity to contribute school sports helped me to some to the team given his strength on the extent to keep my cool and handle the soccer field. So, with a little help from an pressure,” he said. encouraging friend that was a kicker last As a member of the team during this year, Mukherjee decided to try out for past year, Mukherjee also got access to the varsity football team his senior year. the perks, some of which were presented While it's unusual to start playing football when Paly alum and NFL star Davante as a result of health concerns, the switch Adams came to visit the football team. was beneficial for Mukherjee as he was Mukherjee and the rest of the team were able to move seamlessly into the team’s presented with starting kicker spot. brand-new As expected when trying something new, Mukherjee’s first season of football required some trial and error. The unique elements of football that require repetitions and not just physical skill were trying at first, yet eventually they became second nature. “It took a while to adjust to the new elements of

jerseys and shoes, as well as the opportunity to be around one of the best wide-receivers currently playing. For the players, it was a memory that they’ll likely never forget, and was a nice consolation prize for having such a hectic season. “We never had a professional player visit our soccer team,” Mukherjee said. “But I was 1/1 on NFL players coming to Paly." He, like Mazzon, also believes that joining a new sport late in your high school career isn’t for everyone. The nuances and knack for the game that is required in many sports to succeed are difficult to develop in such a short amount of time, and can lead to players feeling like they’re constantly starting on their back foot. “It depends on the sport, because if you're trying something really different it could be more of a struggle to learn all the rules and contribute to the team than it’s worth,” Mukherjee said. “But if it's something that is really similar, and you already have a good grasp of it, I'd definitely say it's a good experience.” All in all, Mukherjee’s season was a success. He set out to have fun playing a sport and not get injured, and he did just that, while also getting to meet an NFL star. Now, Mukherjee is living proof that while starting something new might be scary, you never know the great things that can come from it until you try.

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MASCOTS vs.

Mascots in professional sports can truly make or break the experience of attending a game. We decided to rank the top 5 best and bottom 5 worst mascots in professional sports. Art by SOFIA LEVA

Stuff the Magic Dragon - Orlando Magic

Taking the number one spot on our list is Stuff the Magic Dragon from the Orlando Magic. Just look at him… he’s everything you want in a mascot. From the colorful fit to having his own theme song, no other mascot can even compare to this legend.

Benny the Bull - Chicago Bulls

The Chicago Bulls did something right when choosing Benny the Bull to represent their team. His energy at games and interactions with fans really pushed him towards the top of our list.

Dinger - Colorado Rockies

There’s no doubt in our minds that Dinger from the Colorado Rockies is the cutest mascot out there, but what really makes him stand out is his backstory. He was inspired by the discovery of a seven foot long triceratops fossil underneath the Coors Stadium. How cool is that?

Blooper - Atlanta Braves

Created by fans back in 2018, Blooper from the Atlanta Braves is pretty new to the mascot scene yet has made a stunning first impression. He’s hilarious at games and even makes his way around the community hoping to leave a smile on everyone’s face. Next time you’re in Atlanta, head on over to the Truist Park and meet the man himself.

Phillie Phanatic - Philadelphia Phillies

When pro sport mascots are brought up, the first one that comes to mind is probably going to be Phillie Phanatic of the Philadelphia Phillies. The classic green fur and oversized chucks makes his look one of the most recognizable and simply iconic. 18

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MASCNOTS All Hypervolt photos by Josh Butler.

by JACK ELARDE and VICTORIA SOULODRE

Art by GRACE LI

Gritty - Philadelphia Flyers

While Gritty may be beloved by Philadelphia Flyers fans, we could not get past the horrifying look on his face. Standing at a whopping 7ft, Gritty looks like something out of a nightmare.

The Gorilla - Phoenix Suns

One look at the Phoenix Suns Gorilla and you are sure to question how the Gorilla is allowed around children. What should be a fun and playful mascot is merely a man running around in a lifelike Gorilla suit, which is not something we want to see while attending a basketball game.

Captain Fear - Tampa Bay Buccaneers

His name is literally Captain Fear. Not only does he strike fear into fans but his creepy stare will leave you questioning if you’ll want to return to watch another game. The combination of a unibrow and an odd mustache is something that cannot be appealing to anyone.

Harvey the Hound - Calgary Flame

Although he is iconic for being the first NHL mascot, Harvey the Hound is actually quite terrifying. Said to be standing at 6’6 and weighing 200 lbs, this oversized dog is not something you want to see while trying to enjoy a hockey game. Although we are not fond of Harvey the Hound, we have to admit his wacky long tongue is something pleasant about the monster.

Spartacat - Ottawa Senators

This creepy looking lion is sure to leave fans wishing they watched the game from home. Spartacat’s mane is disturbingly similar to human hair which surprisingly makes his huge frightening eyes not even the worst thing about him. @vikingsportsmag

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GIRLS TEAM OF THE YEAR:

FIELD HOCKEY

Design by SOFIA LEVA

by HAILEY BECK and EMILY NEUMANN

A

fter dominating their league hockey. In her first year at Paly, she and often keeping opponents started a petition to show the school scoreless, the girls field hockey board and athletic director that there team undoubtedly deserves was interest in having a sport. Adding the title of Girls Team of the Year. Despite a new high school sport was a big only recently becoming an official Paly investment given the equipment sport, the team went undefeated this year needed to play, so Gwyn needed all and capped off a dominant season with the support she could get to make the league title. The team was created by her wish come true. After getting 48 founder Lexi Gwyn (‘21) as a freshman signatures on the petition, she started and this year was a true testament of a field hockey club that met weekly the hard work the girls have put in as to develop their skills. Gwyn used Gwyn entered her this time to introduce basic rules final season with and get the the Vikes. Although girls familiar the season was We were once known as with the sport. both delayed and the underdogs who couldn’t H o w e v e r , shortened, the Paly Gwyn couldn’t keep up, now we are a team girls field hockey run the team team truly made by herself; if effortlessly beat teams the best out of she wanted who crushed us only a few the opportunity field hockey seasons ago. to play and showed to become r e m a r k a b l e a Paly team, - Phoebe Kim ‘22 i m p r o v e m e n t she needed as a team. It was a coach. an incredible showcase of talent With the help of her mom, Gwyn found given three years ago, no one Jenny Crane, a special education teacher knew how to play aside from Gwyn. at Paly who played Division 1 field Three years ago, Girls Field Hockey was hockey at Cal Berkeley for four years. not offered at Paly, but Gwyn’s passion Crane agreed to be the girls field hockey for the sport drove her to create a high coach as well as advisor for the newly school team and share her love of field formed club. Over the summer, Crane and Gwyn set up clinics to raise interest and draw girls to sign up. This was when the athletic director finally approved the team and field hockey became an official Paly sport. A crucial part in the team’s approval was the Title IX guidelines requiring an equivalent number of boys and girls high school sports teams. WIth boys volleyball Photo by Jenna Hickey recently being added, 20

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ROSTER: Lexi Gwyn (’21) Hallie Faust (’21) Kellyn Scheel (’23) Natalie Hmelar (’22) Hailene Stitt (’22) Madeline Lohse (’21) Zoe Rosenfeld (’21) Addie Glenwright (’21) Dasha Vartanova (’21) Phoebe Kim (’22) Vienna Liu (’22) Eva Salvatierra (’22) Anna Nemerov (’22) Reilly Bruff (’22)

Gwyn seized the opportunity to add her favorite sport to the list of Paly teams. In 2018, Gwyn finally played her first season of Paly field hockey. Despite their humble beginnings, the girls field hockey team won the league title this past season, and what is most impressive about their accomplishments is how far they have come. Their dedication, hard work, and commitment is why the field hockey team most definitely deserves the title, Girls Team of the Year. Going from beginners to undefeated champs was not handed to the team. Through the offseason, practices, and games, victory was earned. While they struggled in the beginning seasons, the team was determined to reach their goal of becoming unstoppable. Even with a shortened season, the girls put the best efforts forward to work cohesively as a team and execute their goal. Although Gwyn was the only one who came in with previous knowledge on field hockey, others learned quickly to help Gwyn execute in games. Midfielder Phoebe Kim (‘22) was a notable part of the team’s offense, as well as top scorers Kellyn Scheel (‘23) and Natalie Hmelar (‘22). They came into the season ready


to fight and improve as a team, seizing every opportunity they got to play. “We truly made the best of our season,” Kim reflected, “this year was a testament of all the hard work we have put in over the past three years, especially in the off season.” Gwyn highlighted that a crucial part of their victories was how connected the team felt, on and off the Field. The first year, the team had no seniors graduating, and last season the team only said goodbye to two. Gwyn believes this is what has allowed the team to gel together, knowing exactly where each other are on the field and working together to win. “We worked hard for each other because we understood each other. We know each other and I think that’s how we really went from not being a team to winning league,” Gwyn said. “We’ve been there for each other for so long that it strengthens your character and

Photo by Jenna Hickey your attitude, which 100% contributes to our performance as a team. You don’t just hustle for your skills, but you hustle for each other and that really

showed in our gameplay.” None of the team really knew how well the season was going to go, but working together, they began to feel the satisfaction of competing and winning their games. Starting off strong with a whopping 5-0 win against Valley Christian, their energy and determination set the tone for the rest of the season. Hmelar, an offensive star, was really proud of their hard work. “Each and every game we left feeling spectacular,” Hmelar said. “The feeling from the last games only motivated us more for the next ones.” With only three players choosing to play club outside of Paly, so other members on the team practiced and improved in their own ways in preparation for the season. The individual efforts were a main contributor to the unexpected achievement. The players left their heart out on the field, and the scoreboard was a token of their success. “Former Paly football coach, Louis Valdez, helped the team gain momentum in their first season playing and set the stage for the upcoming years. He talked to the girls and explained how the first season would be focused on skill: they would just begin learning the basics and weren’t expected to win any games. That year they scored a total of

SCORES: Lynbrook- 6-0 Fremont 9-1 Wilcox 6-0 Los Altos 2-6 Monta Vista 7-0 Saratoga 5-0 Cupertino 4-0 Homestead 2-0 Valley Christian 5-0

three goals over the course of 18 games. The second season was about building on those basics and starting to connect with one another. That year they scored 35 goals over the course of 18 games. Then the third season, which was the last season Gwyn would play for Paly, it was about winning. This year the girls scored 45 goals in just nine games. Their overall record for games this season was 8-1, but the girls went 7-0 in league to become reigning champs. Reflecting back, the team realized how their efforts matched exactly with what Valdez had outlined. Their improvements and hard work led to outstanding success which is what ultimately makes the girls field hockey team, Paly’s Girls Team of The Year. The perseverance and determination that each of these girls held was inspiring. The ability to go from nothing to having a winning record of this nature is an incredible accomplishment.

Honorable Mention:

GIRLS LACROSSE If it weren’t for the impressive accomplishments of the Girls Field Hockey Team, the Girls Lacrosse Team was a top contender in the race for Girls Team of the Year. The lacrosse players have a strong chance to win league this spring, and with the new vote that CCS will occur, the team could qualify to play during the summer. This is the very first year that Girl’s lacrosse has been added to the list of sports competing in CCS, which is the ultimate team goal. To begin the season, the team started off strong, going undefeated and beating

their biggest rivals, Los Gatos and Mountain View. Unfortunately, the team dropped games to Gunn and Los Gatos later in the season. Despite the losses, the girls still have an opportunity to win league. These setbacks have fueled energy to push harder. Everyone on the team hopes to continue the winning streak they had started in the beginning of the season in hopes of qualifying for CCS and winning league. A crucial part in working well together on the field are the positive efforts the team has made to bond outside

of practices, which substantially helps the chemistry on the field. Prior to the season, pre-season practices helped create a community of both friends and players. As a result, the team’s energy is unmatched on the field when everyone works together to win. With a couple girls coming back from injury, the team hopes to fight hard and finish the season strong. The perseverance of the Girls Lacrosse Team is extremely impressive, the end of the season as well as CSS will be a testament of all their hard work.

@vikingsportsmag

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BOYS TEAM OF THE YEAR:

VARSITY BASEBALL

by AIDEN BERGER, HAYDEN JUNG-GOLDBERG, and ZACH HAYWARD Design by SOFIA LEVA, Photos by JENNA HICKEY

I

f one were to find themselves walking Paly’s campus in the early to midafternoon, they would no doubt be greeted by the unmistakable crack of the bat and the pops of gloves. The source of these sounds? The Paly baseball field, where the 21 players of the Paly Varsity baseball team are hard at work. After the majority of their season was cut short by the coronavirus pandemic over a year ago, the Vikings are back and playing some very impressive, high-level baseball. Their hard work and dedication, a l o n g with their subsequent success against

competition on the field, are the reasons why the Varsity baseball team is the Paly Boys Team of the Year. However, the question must be asked. What does it take to be named the Team of the Year? One word that immediately comes to mind is resilience. Due to extremely unfortunate and challenging occurrences over the past year, Paly baseball players are no strangers to this characteristic. After only playing a few games in the 2020 season, the Vikings’ season was abruptly halted in early March by COVID, robbing them of massive opportunities. “It was a huge d i s a p p o i n t m e n t ,” Ritter Amsbaugh (‘21) said. “We had big hopes for the season, and felt like we had all the right guys to win it all.” Despite the crushing loss of a season full of promise, the Vikings did not let the disappointment overcome them. After only losing two graduating seniors, Dean Casey (‘20) and Austin Yu (‘20), the team felt poised to compete the next year with relatively the same squad as before. To prepare for the 2021 season, many players hit

We pick each other up and trust each other to do our jobs - Xavier Esquer ‘22

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ROSTER:

Ritter Amsbaugh (‘21) Charlie Bates (‘24) Aidan Berger (‘21) Dante Black (‘22) Henry Bolte (‘22) Zander Darby (‘21) Dominic DeFeo (‘22) Josh Donaker (‘22) Xavier Esquer (‘22) Rowan Felsch (‘22) Jack Haight (‘22) Tommy Hall (‘21) Ryan Harvey (‘21) Zach Hayward (‘22) Andre Hyrkin (‘22) Callum Olsen (‘21) Danny Peters (‘22) Sidd Shashi (‘22) Bowman Wingard (‘21) Colin Thibault (‘21) Hayden Jung-Goldberg (‘21) the offseason with vigor, training every day in the gym and on the field. If their season so far is any indication, the hard work is certainly paying off. After being ranked the #19 team in the state of California in pre-season rankings from MaxPreps, the Vikings jumped into the season with a strong victory over Gilroy. Led by head coach Pete Fukuhara, they have rolled to a 10-2 record so far, with the only losses coming in a close game to Valley Christian and a tough game against rival Los Gatos. With a 27game schedule and three to four games a week, the team certainly has a packed plate. However, they are just happy to be playing. “My favorite part so far is definitely just getting back out on the field with the boys,” Bowman Wingard (‘21) said. “I look forward to being on the field each day to compete and win games.” And win they have. Recent important victories over then-undefeated Serra and a 10-2 victory over Los Gatos on the road propelled the Vikings to be


ranked the #2 high school team in the Bay Area. This success can obviously be largely attributed to the hard work and performance of the players, a team mostly consisting of upperclassmen. The Paly infield has been anchored by Amsbaugh and Tommy Hall (‘21) at the corners, and Xavier Esquer (‘22) and Zander Darby (‘21) up the middle. Senior Hayden Jung-Goldberg and juniors Henry Bolte and Zach Hayward have been locking down the outfield from left to right. Wingard and Dominic DeFeo (‘22) have both shared time at catcher. Senior Aidan Berger has proved to be a big-time bat for the Vikings. “We’re tough to beat,” Esquer said. “We pick each other up and trust each other to do our jobs.” The Viking pitching has been especially strong this year, with seniors Callum Olsen, Ryan Harvery, Amsbaugh,

Hall, and Colin Thibault, as well as juniors Josh Donaker, Rowan Felsch, Danny Peters, and Jack Haight, providing strong innings from the mound. One word to describe this team is deep. Outside of the normal starters, Dante Black (‘22), Andre Hyrkin (‘22), Sidd Shashi (‘22) and Charlie Bates (‘24) have all been solid bats off the bench. With the breadth of talent on this Viking roster, it is no surprise that they have found so much success this year. However, there are other reasons that explain why the team has been so impressive. “The team has each other’s backs and is willing to pick each other up,” Darby said. “It’s such a great feeling when you know that everyone’s number one priority is to beat the other team.” The chemistry and brotherhood that the Paly baseball team has built is no mistake. The core group of seniors have

played with each other for years, and have established extremely valuable friendships that benefit them both on the field and off. The senior leaders, along with the rest of the team, have created and fostered a culture of winning and family that one would be hard pressed to find anywhere else. “They are all my brothers,” Amsbaugh said of the team. “I don’t know what kind of person I would be without them.” “This is my last chance to play the game I love with all of my best friends,” Darby added. “My time with Paly baseball is coming to an end, which has fueled me to take the team as far as possible.” By all indications, Paly varsity baseball will continue to provide its fans with exciting baseball and a whole lot of success the rest of this season. The sky is the limit for these boys.

Honorable Mention:

BOYS SWIMMING Without a CCS meet, perhaps the best Paly boys swim team in the school’s history was forced to make their mark in the regular season meets. The boys demolished a 200 freestyle relay record by nearly three seconds with a time that would have likely challenged for first at a CCS meet. Sophomore Ethan Harrington also led off the relay in a remarkable 20.87: the fastest 50 freestyle split that the Vikings have had since D1 star Andrew Liang swam a 20.14 as a senior. Junior Harrison Williams, who anchored

the record-breaking swim in 20.64, believes that this team found success as a result of what had been taken away. “What made the team really successful this year was the amount of young talent we had, he said. “As well as everyone’s desire to win after not getting a chance to compete last year.” While the team will lose a key senior class, hopes of a CCS title in the years to come are still valid. In previous years, a single race might yield one or two swimmers who earned their CCS

cut, but this year it wasn’t uncommon to see all four athletes in each heat hit the time standard. The team had an unprecedented 21 athletes post times under the CCS standards in just three days of competition. While we will never know what this team could have accomplished at a CCS meet, the athletes certainly took advantage of the few days of competition that were granted to them - which is the mark of a great team.

@vikingsportsmag

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GIRLS UPPERCLASSMAN OF THE YEAR:

PHOEBE KIM

Photos by JENNA HICKEY

PHOTO

by SOFIA LEVA

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his year’s Girl Upperclassman of spring sports being cancelled and the Year, Phoebe Kim, has got this fall and winter sports being a it all when it comes to sports. season delayed, I decided to make Her extensive passion and the most of my opportunities dedication towards athletics in the past and to play all three sports that few years have allowed her to excel in were mashed into one shortened multiple varsity level sports here at Paly. season,” Kim said. “I never wanted All sport seasons had to be cut short to take athletics for granted due to the pandemic this year, which was again after the pandemic hit.” upsetting news for many Paly athletes. Her favorite sport of the three However, Kim took advantage of this new is lacrosse, which she has been schedule a n d playing since eighth grade. She decided to plans to continue playing play on three after high school at Stanford, separate where she verbally committed varsity teams, during the fall of 2020. despite their “I’m so excited to fulfil occasional my long time dream overlaps. The of attending Stanford ambitious University and playing for athlete took their amazing coaching - Phoebe Kim ‘22 on varsity staff,” Kim said. “I have lacrosse, field hockey and always walked across soccer simultaneously, and has earned a the road after my own lacrosse games to starting spot for two out of the three sports. watch their games and to cheer them on.” “With the devastating news of last year’s Kim is making the most of her limited time on the Paly lacrosse field. Most recently, the girls earned their first victory over Los Gatos seasons played in in three years, where Kim contributed five goals and three 2021 assists in an 8-7 win over the Cats. “My freshman year we lost to the Cats in a very close game at the SCVAL championship sport team and beating them this year in a captain well-matched game was really fun and something that I will remember forever,” Kim said. She also contributed seven goals and three assists in a lacrosse Stanford 12-6 win over Menlo-Atherton this season. In large part due commit to her strong play, the girls remain undefeated so far.

I never wanted to take athletics for granted again after the pandemic hit.

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Kim’s inspiration sprouts from her competitive nature. The thrill of success always leaves her longing for more in every sport she plays. “Caring about competition is something that has majorly contributed to my successes in my sports career,” Kim said. “I love to win and I hate to lose.” Consistency and teamwork are crucial qualities in a great athlete, and Kim thrives in those departments. Her teammates can always count on her to take home the win. Her reliability and determination carries through to all other sports she decides to take on. Kim’s second sport is field hockey, which was the first compressed season Kim played this year. The team dominated the competition and emerged undefeated in the league, having lost only to Los Altos in an out of league game. Kim played a significant role in obtaining that perfect record, as she started every game of the season. A major triumph of this season was their first win over Homestead, where Kim scored the game tying goal and assisted the winning goal. “We have never beaten Homestead before this year.” she said. “This season, we beat them twice.” Even though balancing multiple sport seasons and school work may be a great challenge for most, Kim never misses a beat. When multiple seasons


overlapped at times this year, Kim found nevertheless,” Kim said. “I enjoyed that the coaches were my time spent playing with the team.” very understanding In every sport Kim plays, she brings and flexible. something Because of her special to the busy schedule with team. As a field hockey, Kim team captain joined the soccer in lacrosse season a bit later and field than it had started, h o c k e y , shortening the she always - Phoebe Kim ‘22 season even more. sets a good “It was a really example for short season, but still a great experience her teammates and keeps the energy

My teammates are my best friends off the field and we love to celebrate big wins together.

high during games and in practice. Being on a team is like having a second family for Kim, and she values time spent playing and hanging out with the other players. “My teammates are my best friends off the field and we love to celebrate big wins together,” Kim said. “We each have special connections with one another and it’s evident on the field with our quick transitions and our ability to thread the needle and score clutch goals.” Kim looks forward to continuing playing her favorite sports next year as a senior.

Honorable Mention:

LULU GAITHER Choosing only one female athlete for this award is always a tough decision due to all of the accomplished athletes at Paly. Lulu Gaither, a senior, is one of those strong athletes. This year, Gaither played on the varsity water polo team as a driver as well as varsity lacrosse as a midfielder. She was grateful to be able to play on two separate teams in her last few months at Paly and get back in the old grind after almost two years of not being able to play either sport. “A silver lining after this season was that we were able to get some closure,” Gaither said. “I never expected to have a season at all this year so I’m super thankful we were able to make that happen and finish senior year on a good note.” After graduating, Gaither looks forward to attending Pitzer College, where she will continue to play water polo and make great memories with her team. @vikingsportsmag

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BOYS UPPERCLASSMAN OF THE YEAR:

JOSH BUTLER

Design by SOFIA LEVA

by JAMES FETTER and ROEI ZIV

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n a year marred by the coronavirus and lots of uncertainty over restrictions and guidelines, it was unclear if there was even going to be a 2021 football season. But as vaccines were developed and case rates slowly went down, the SCVAL approved a shortened, five game season for football. For junior running back Josh Butler, this opportunity meant everything. Butler is being recognized as Viking’s upperclassmen male athlete of the year for his impact on the football field and the value he brings to the team. The Viking offense revolved around Butler, who finished with 11 touchdowns and over 750 yards in only five games. This translates to more than 2 touchdowns and 150 yards per game, a remarkable stat line. “What makes Josh so dominant is the way he takes sports so serious in and off the field,” junior quarterback Danny Peters said. “That kid is the hardest worker I’ve ever seen and he never turns down the chance to help out another teammate. That mindset goes into the game as confidence and makes him the dominant RB we need.” Despite being the driving force of the Viking offense, Butler also takes pride in his teammates’ achievements. This selflessness is part of why Butler is such a valuable part of the team.

Photo by Jenna Hickey “After seeing all my senior friends the last game, it really teaches you to appreciate all that this game is,” Butler said. “Every game played is one less to be played, so you really learn to appreciate all of the moments of the season. Getting hyped with my teammates for the first time that year was something I’ll cherish forever.” Butler’s achievements can be traced to the 2019 football season, where he had a breakout year as a sophomore. After emerging as a star, Butler felt inspired to take his game to the next level. Over quarantine Butler bulked up in an effort to make himself a bigger threat on the field. “Between the 2019 season and the

That kid is the hardest worker I’ve ever seen. —Danny Peters ‘22

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one that ended a couple months ago I tried to add on as much mass as I could,” Butler said. “It was an effort that began after football ended last fall and lasted an entire year. I went from around 160 pounds to 195 pounds in preparation for the season.” This added mass allowed Butler to plow through defenders, and combined with his speed and agility, Butler became a force on the football field. But despite Butler’s remarkable season, the Vikings as a team were not as dominant as in past years, finishing with two wins and three losses. This included a 45-7 defeat at the hands of league rival Los Gatos in their final game of the season. Although the season wasn’t perfect for Paly, Butler was just happy to be outside playing football again with his teammates. “The best part about being able to play football this year was finally getting a break from doing nothing all day,” Butler said. “Throughout quarantine we have all been so bored — football was a great escape from all the craziness of the last


year.” Butler will return next year in his senior campaign to build on his success from this year, hopefully in a regular season unaffected by COVID. “We were a super young team this year,“ Butler said. “I am excited to see what we can do when we are all seniors next year.”

11 750 TDs

Yards

In a five game season

Photo by Jenna Hickey

Honorable Mention:

Photo by Jenna Hickey

AARON KIM

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t was extremely hard to narrow down all the incredible athletes that performed at such high levels during a challenging, shortened season. An athlete that very well could have won this award is senior Aaron Kim, a standout athlete on Paly’s Track and Field Team. Kim is one of the best high jumpers in the state. He proved that this season with incredible performances at meets, where he shined among a crowd of other outstanding athletes. Undoubtedly, his best performance came in a meet in mid May, where he jumped 6’7”, which is his personal

best, and ranks third in the state. Kim’s jump is also only an inch off of the Paly record of 6’8”. Kim knew from the beginning that he would not take his Senior season for granted. “Knowing that there was uncertainty with the season meant I couldn’t waste my time,” Kim said. “Seeing how far I’ve come despite those challenges has been extremely rewarding.” The hard work that Kim put in at a time when nobody really knew if there was even going to be a season separated him from the rest of the field. He is the real life example of how hard work really does pay off.

@vikingsportsmag

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GIRLS UNDERCLASSMAN OF THE YEAR:

ELIZABETH FETTER

Design by SOFIA LEVA

by CAYDEN GU and PHOEBE KIM

T

he most dominant female force tices per week from 6:00-8:00 am. ing forward to the [cross country] and in Paly XC is only a sophomore. Outside of her competitive sports, track seasons next year because of the And she picked up the sport Fetter has also picked up road biking chance to compete in CCS and States.” only last year. As a sophomore, and participates in Sunday morning Elizabeth Fetter (‘23) has already excelled rides hosted by the Paly Cycling Club. in cross country as well as track and field Sports have become so inand club swimming. During her freshman grained in her lifestyle that she even year, she placed 35th at the state-level finds joy during tough workouts. cross country competition and helped “It sounds weird, but I also kind her team to the 7th place title, which she of relish that feeling of pain in the considers to be her greatest Paly athletic middle of a really hard workout. accomplishment so far. As a swimmer on And then, of course, the endorphin her club team, she has already emerged high that you get once you finish it.” as one of But for Fetter, the fastest sports are more female swimthan a solo purmers at Paly. suit for pain. Given her “I love sports numerous because of the When it’s not about accomplishconnections I ments, it is the time, I can approach can make with no surprise people,” Fetmeets and practices that sports ter said. “I have play an inte- more as just having fun. made most of gral role in my really close - Fetter ‘23 who she is. friends through “I would say athletics.” that sports She also humare a huge bly attributes part of my life. I have been doing them part of her success to those around her. Photo by Jenna Hickey since before I can remember and I hope “One of the reasons why it’s so fun and to continue to do them for a long time.” I’m able to have fun at practices and train From an early age, Fetter has been so well and do well in meets is because playing sports, having swam for as long of the team.” Fetter said. “The commuas she could remember. Surprisingly, nity that we have is really awesome.” she only began running high school. Because running has always “I picked up running pretty much fresh- been her secondary sport, Fetter man year because my older brother has never felt pressured to excel. had done it and it seemed fun, but then “When it’s not about the time, I CA State Finals Rank #35 as I fell in love with it and with the team.” can approach meets and practices Fetter is a competitive athlete. De- more as just having fun.” Fetter said. a Freshman spite injuring her arm recently, Fetter “Obviously working hard and getcontinues to follow an intensive train- ting better, but also just having fun.” ing regimen. She typically runs every During her next two years at Paly, Fetter afternoon with the Paly track team from hopes to continue to excel at a high level. 3:45-5:30 and then has club swim“It would be super cool to get a Paly ming from 5:30-7:00. On top of that, track record in either the 1600 or the she attends two morning swim prac- 3200,” Fetter said. “I am also really look-

Cross-country results: 5:48 pace 18:18 5k

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BOYS UNDERCLASSMAN OF THE YEAR: Design by SOFIA LEVA

GRANT MORGENFELD by CAYDEN GU and PHOEBE KIM

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rant Morgenfeld is a force tice after school to be reckoned with in three where we will sports; cross country, track, either have a and soccer. A freshman phe- longer easy run nom, Morgenfeld’s dominant presence or a tough track can already be felt around the track. Mor- workout. On a genfeld already boasts an impressive few days I will 4:27 mile time and has beat the Gunn go to soccer cross country course freshman record with 10:35 for 2.18 miles. There are few Morgenthings that display feld has always been your hard work and surrounded determination like by sports, first beginning sports his athletic ca- Morgenfeld ‘24 reer at a young age with baseball and soccer. Through these, he found his love for running. practice straight “I joined the track team because it is very from track.” similar to cross country,” Morgenfeld said. Hard-work“They both involve running as a team and ing, determined, and disciplined, training hard. This is what makes it so spe- Morgenfeld is able to juggle three cial for me, you get pushed by your team- sports and beat records while also mates and you create bonds with each cherishing moments with friends. other that only come from hard work.” “I really enjoy sports because it gives Since then, sports have con- me an outlet for all the built up energy tinued to play an integral role in from the day. I also like the team aspect his life, teaching him life lessons. of it. Team sports allow each member “Sports have affected my life by giving to be pushed by the other, and you me discipline and showing what I am get to make friends along the way.” capable of.” Morgenfeld said. “There In upcoming years keep an eye are few things that display your hard out for Morgenfeld, as he will unwork and determination like sports. “ doubtedly lead his teams to success. Morgenfeld is an athlete with “I hope that we can get our teams a busy schedule, often bounc- back to the cross country state ing from track practice to soccer. meets and other high level com“A couple days a week I will go out in petitions. I also hope to be a good the morning for a short run to clear my role model for incoming athletes.” mind and get ready for the day,” Morgenfeld said. “I will then attend track prac-

Photo by Jenna Hickey

Cross-country results: 4:27 mile 9:40 2 mile 16:05 5k

Gunn Cross Country Course Freshmen record

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ALOK SUBBARAO SPORTSMANSHIP AWARD

ANDIE TETZLAFF

F

by SOPHIE KADIFA Design by SOFIA LEVA rom leading Paly girls lacrosse as a captain to dominating as Paly’s starting water polo goalie, Andie Tetzlaff (‘21) has left her mark on Paly athletics, but most importantly, on her teammates. Tetzlaff has been playing sports since she was around four, but just recently picked up water polo her freshman year of high school. In water polo, the defensive side of the game mainly revolves around the goalie and her ability to communicate with her teammates. Tetzlaff filled that role well and became the Viking’s starting varsity goalie during her junior year of high school. Tetzlaff is known for encouraging h e r teammates and -Lulu Gaither (‘21) being positive even in difficult situations during games. Grace Lindstrom (‘21) has been playing water polo with Tetzlaff since 2017 and appreciates her commitment to being a role model on the team. “Whether we win or lose, she is

supporting her teammates and respecting girls in the pool,” Lindstrom said. Similar her beginnings in the pool, Tetzlaff only began playing lacrosse during eighth grade. After being one of four girls to make the varsity Photo by Jenna Hickey team as a freshman, Tetzlaff was pressured to compete at play,” Gaither said. a higher level than what she was used In a regular school year, high school to. She is now a co-captain of the girls water polo is a fall sport and lacrosse is lacrosse team. a spring sport. Because of the pandemic, Tetzlaff’s leadership has helped her water polo and lacrosse both have team over the years, notably qualifying condensed seasons in the spring. Tetzlaff for the S.C.V.A.L. league has been participating in both water finals in 2019. The polo and lacrosse even with conflicting team fell to Los Gatos schedules. in a heartbreaker, but “This year in particular, Andie has really redeemed themselves stepped up for us. Playing two sports at this season, defeating the once is crazy, but she’s making it work for Cats recently. us,” Lindstrom said. Tetzlaff’s enthusiasm Although playing two sports at once during practices and can take a toll on an athlete’s enthusiasm games has contributed and attitude, Tetzlaff is able to balance to her own individual and her time and is always supportive of her team success. Lulu Gaither (‘21) plays teammates. lacrosse and water polo with Tetzlaff and “Andie never comes out of a game they have grown close over the past four upset or frustrated with her teammates years. and is always one of the most optimistic “Whenever I need her, she’s always people in the pool or on the field,” there to hype me up or get me excited to Gaither said.

Andie never comes out of a game upset or frustrated with her teammates.

Honorable Mention:

NOELLE BURWELL

Noelle Burwell (‘21) has been a member of two sports teams at Paly, tennis and softball. Although Burwell has been playing sports for many years, the social aspect of Paly sports was an experience that Burwell enjoyed. Myra Xu (‘21) plays tennis with Burwell for the Vikings and got to know her through being her doubles partner. “There was a time when we finished our match a bit early, and a teammate who plays exhibition needed a doubles partner. Noelle and I were both so tired, but she stepped up and decided to play a whole other match so our teammate could play, which was really nice of her,” Xu said.

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ALOK SUBBARAO SPORTSMANSHIP AWARD

RITTER AMSBAUGH

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by GRACE LI

Design by SOFIA LEVA

ou can often find Ritter position on the field,” Fukuhara Amsbaugh (‘21) in the trainer’s said. “He makes us great in office emptying or filling huge whatever position he’s playing jugs of gatorade and water for so he’s just a great baseball his baseball teammates. A job you mostly player.” see underclassmen doing, Amsbaugh Along with his ability to has been the honorary “waterboy” for perform well at his sport, his team since his sophomore year and Amsbaugh’s teammates has voluntarily continued to be the appreciate how encouraging “waterboy” even as a senior. and kind Amsbaugh is. Zander Amsbaugh has been a varsity starter for Darby (‘21) has played baseball with the Viking’s since his sophomore year, Amsbaugh since they were ten years old. playing third base and pitching. Pete They played together throughout the Fukuhara is P a l y ’ s Little League, travel ball, and now high varsity head school baseball. Darby coach and notes his sportsmanship has coached skills even in tough Amsbaugh situations. since he got “He’s a very gracious pulled up winner and loser. And he to varsity at has a lot of respect for the end of whatever we’re playing. his freshman When things go bad, he year. stays composed,” Darby “I saw right said. “He’s still going to away that he is pick someone up and the definition talk to someone to try to of a baseball make them feel better -Zander Darby (‘21) player, he’s got and he’s one of the best great instincts, teammates you can have.” and he’s got great ability. He’s one of Amsbaugh acts as a leader for the those players that can actually play any team and has a great character fit to

He’s still going to pick someone up to try to make them feel better and he’s one of the best teammates you can have.

Photo by Jenna Hickey

Photo by Jenna Hickey support the team dynamic of baseball. This can be shown in action, when the team played Los Gatos for the first time this year. The team lost badly and left the Viking’s discouraged when they came to practice the next day. Even with the tough loss, Amsbaugh was able to support his teammates. “He brought the team together, and he said some stuff that kind of just lifted us up in a way, which was a very good moment,” Darby said. Amsbaugh has the ability to motivate his teammates and keep a positive attitude in times of difficulty. His coach, Fukuhara, sees something special in Amsbaugh as more than just an athlete. “If I could nominate one of my players for the last eight years to get the sportsman award, it would be Ritter. He’s overqualified for this award. He’s got some of the best character on the team,” Fukuhara said.

Honorable Mention:

LEO MALCHIN

Leo Malchin (‘21) is a member of Paly’s boys soccer team and has left his mark on Paly athletics. During practices, Malchin cheers up his teammates when they do something well and gives them constructive criticism when they have something they should work on. This past season did not go well for the team, with multiple losses and only one win. However, even through the unsuccess, the team continued to play with the same strategy and worked hard. “I think that also helped us remain a tightly-knit and fun group throughout the season, which isn’t always trivial given the results we got,” Malchin said. @vikingsportsmag

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SEASON RECAPS

Photos by JENNA HICKEY

by IAN COMEY and RYAN LEONG

It’s been a rough year for Paly athletes. With COVID in full effect, the chances of a season happening for any athlete seemed bleak. This was especially difficult to face for seniors, who were on the verge of losing their last chance to suit up for their team. Ruby Doerr, a senior on the girls soccer team, was particularly

disappointed by this possibility. “I was actually super bummed out because I thought I was gonna have one last season to play with all the juniors and seniors,” Doerr said. “It was tough to think that we might not have our senior night and all those experiences.”

baseball

The baseball team has been phenomenal this season, boasting a strong 10-4 overall record and a perfect 4-0 league record. Led by seniors Hayden Jung-Goldberg, Zander Darby, and Aidan Berger, the Paly baseball team looks to finish the season strong with 14 games remaining on their schedule and

Led by standout players Owen Rice, Evan Passalacqua, and Calvin Wong, boys volleyball has started the season strong. Maintaining the second place spot in their division, they are off to a 4-2 start and look to win out. Given that the sport was only introduced to Paly athletics in 2018, the current results are encouraging for the future of boys volleyball. The girls volleyball team finished the season with a strong 8-1 record which

boasted them with the number one spot in league. Despite there being no CCS competition, the girls won the virtual “league title” with an 8-1 record. Senior Trisha Razdan believes that despite this frustrating reality, the season brought many positives. “It was definitely tough to have a shortened season but I’m honestly just really grateful to have been able to put on the Paly uniform one last time,” Razdan said. The girls swimming and diving team is in the midst of a rebuilding year after losing two collegiate swimmers, but they retained a solid core led by Elizabeth Fetter, our Underclassman of the Year, who’s won every event she’s competed in this season. Hana Erickson and Sophie Kadifa have also put up strong showings in the butterfly and 100 freestyle, respectively. The boys swim team has been dominant so far,

swimming

The season has started strong for Paly wrestling despite having a relatively young squad. In particular, a strong junior squad led by Max Felter, Ella Jauregui, and Cade Creighton has been dominant. Since last season, Felter has moved up four weight classes but has 32

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Just when things seemed hopeless, Paly Athletics announced a modified schedule for its teams to compete in SCVAL events over the course of 15 weeks. Each sport got a limited window to compete, but for senior athletes, the opportunity meant everything.

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look to make a strong run in the CCS playoffs. “The team right now is playing really well,” Berger said. “We’ve come together as a group and we have started to play like we know how we can play. We just need to keep it up. We have a lot of season left and we’re far from satisfied”.

Volleyball

boasting a 3-0 record. 21 swimmers have qualified for CCS competition and are set to make a strong run in the event if they are allowed to participate. A team record was set in the 200 freestyle relay as a result of strong performances from Sophomore Ethan Harrington and Junior Eric Gabbassof.

managed to find success as he recently entered the state rankings. Another bright young star on the team is sophomore Philip Santiago who will be a force to be reckoned with for the Vikings in the years to come.

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WRESTLING


The boys water polo team has looked strong in what was supposed to be a rebuilding season. After losing the single-season scoring record holder Ryan Stanley and his star partner in crime Dexter Gormley, it was primed to be a challenging year for the Vikings. Nevertheless, the team has started 6-3 in league play. The highlight of the season was a remarkable comeback

boys waterpolo

The girls water polo team has found strong success this year as a result of high-level play from collegiate commits Sophie Kadifa (LMU) and Lulu Gaither (Pitzer). After defeating Los Altos for the first time in nearly a decade last year in triple overtime, the Vikes have dominated the Eagles in both match-

ups. While they have plowed through most of the league, Los Gatos, Gunn, and newly added Castilleja have proved to be challenging match-ups. The team hopes to close out the season strong by defeating the top of the league on their second pass through the teams.

girls cross country

The boys team also placed first overall on the Baylands course by taking an incredible 2nd through 6th place. Freshman phenom and Viking Underclassman of the Year Grant Morgenfeld (‘24) led the pack for the Vikings with his 16:05 over the 5K course. He was closely followed

At the league championship on the Baylands course, the girls team took first place and had the top two individual runners. Our Viking Underclassman of the year Elizabeth Fetter (‘23) crossed the line first by a stunning margin of nearly

girls waterpolo

23 seconds over the 5K race. She was followed by her sophomore classmate Hillary Studdert who took second overall in the event. The win capped off a historically dominant season for Fetter who also broke the Gunn course record.

boys cross country

by seniors David Evans and Aleksei Seletskiy who both averaged under 5:25 pace per mile. The Vikes graduate a historically strong class but look primed to continue their success in the future with young stars like Morgenfeld.

boys tennis

after being down 9-13 to Harker with less than four minutes to play. A bar-in shot from senior Loic Ijzerman forced overtime where the Vikings clamped on the defensive end to take a 15-13 lead. As the buzzer sounded on the first of two overtime periods, Chow netted a 20 yard shot to the upper corner to ice the game.

On the boys side, a series of inleague losses has contributed to a disappointing start to the season. The team is 0-3 so far with a pair of losses to Los Gatos and a tough game against

Lynbrook. They look to rebound with an away game at Lynbrook again. Check out the Viking website for more updates as their season continues.

girls tennis A strong team is led by standout players Iris Li ‘22 and underclassman Erin Li ‘24. The team took seven of the top 10 games to close out the season near the top of the league standings.

On the individual side, Myra Xu from the class of ‘21 finished the season with a perfect record: a great way to cap off her Paly career.

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football

Led by juniors Danny Peters and Josh Butler, the football team finished with a 2-3 record. While the record wasn’t up to par with a typical Paly football season, senior Jackson Bundy doesn’t see the season as a disappointment. “It might not have been the best season record wise, but just getting to

The girls field hockey team finished the season with an impressive 8-1 record, a fitting end for the final year with the founder of the team Lexi Gwyn. Senior Madeline Lohse was proud of how the team has grown in this fourth year. “This was our best season yet because it was the third year that we have all played and developed together,” she said. “This is the year that it finally

came together.” Lohse also credited the success on the field to the team’s communication. “I think that our skills and communication were at an all time high because our team chemistry was really strong and the team bonded really well,” Lohse said. “Also, the team had a very positive attitude and growth mindset throughout the season which really helped.”

boys soccer

The boys soccer team struggled this season with a new head coach at the helm, finishing the season with a record of 1-8-2. Despite the poor record, Goalkeeper Teg Singh was proud of the team’s effort. “Obviously we didn’t have a very good record throughout the season, but

The girls soccer team finished the season with a record of 2-5-3, and despite missing out on a portion of the season, senior Ruby Doerr tried making the best of the irregular season. “Our focus was to really have fun and to just get out there and play,” Doerr said.

The boys basketball team has struggled this season, with a 5-7 overall record. However, they’ve seen better results in league play (4-4) and won back to back

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we were able to work our tails off and fortunately the results came to fruition in the last game,” Singh said. Singh also noted that the team’s defense was rock solid throughout the whole season, giving up the least amount of goals conceded in the league.

According to Junior Eric Fan, the team has also developed a number of young promising talents for the season in the 2021 fall semester. “I’m very optimistic about having a strong team next year,” he said.

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girls soccer

which made us play better and we are starting to click as a team,” Shah said. “We also just got off a huge league win where everyone got involved and we want everyone on the team to feel a part of something.” Their most dominant performance came against Homestead, winning by a whopping margin of 56 points.

games against Milpitas. Perhaps the most electric moment of the season has come at the hands of crosstown rival Gunn who fell to the Vikings 41-28.

Due to the pandemic, many team members opted out of the shortened season. Those who did play faced a variety of challenges, but despite the chaos and limited number of players, the team won several meets. 34

field hockey

One of the team’s most memorable parts of the season occurred when senior Hailey Hwang scored on senior night. “It was special not only because it was on senior night, but also because it was the last game and we won,” Doerr said.

The girls team has fared better in the shortened season. Led by Senior Annika Shah, who just recently crossed the 1,200th point mark in her Paly career, they boast an overall 8-5 record and a 7-2 record in league play. Shah notes the team’s growth over the course of the season. “We’ve played some tough opponents

girls basketball

play something was great,” Bundy said. Their best performance came against Milpitas, with a statement score of 5926 in which Butler rushed 12 times for 204 yards and two touchdowns.

boys basketball


Boys track athletes have made the most of the irregular season, like senior Aaron Kim who has recently jumped 6’8’’ to surge into the top three for California high school rankings. “The shortened season has helped

boys track and field

motivate me because we have less time to train, which means that everything we do counts,” Kim said. Another notable performance came from Aleksei Seletskiy who nearly toppled the Paly mile record in 4:15.

girls track and field The track and field team was hit hard by the shortened season, as they missed out on invitational meets like the Arcadia Invitational - an elite meet held in southern California. Star sophomore Elizabeth Fetter The boys lacrosse team has gotten off to a rocky start, winning the first game and then losing the next four. However, senior Jace Purcell remains optimistic for the rest of the season. “We have only five seniors, so we are still learning and growing as a team but we are looking to turn the season around

girls lacrosse

had been one of Paly’s top qualifiers for the event, but she has made the most of her season with local meets regardless with a 10:52 in the girls 3200.

boys lacarosse

and we are pretty confident with the rest of our schedule,” Purcell said. The team broke a 6 game losing streak with a 9-5 win against Burlingame, and hope to close out the season with wins against Mountain View and Valley Christian.

This season marked the first time in two years that the girl’s lacrosse team took the field, but the team has already found strong chemistry. Despite being anxious to play, the team has found their stride with a dazzling win against

Los Gatos. As the final buzzer sounded, Lanie Henry ‘22 scored to put the Vikings ahead. The win also avenged a brutal loss to the Cats in the 2019 SCVAL final.

softball After a coaching change, the girls softball team has been forced to adapt in a challenging pandemic season. While the team has only notched a 6-6 record, the season has not been without its bright spots. The team pushed an undefeated Gunn team to the brink in a 1-0 loss - the

closest any team has gotten to unseating the titans. Senior Victoria Soulodre is optimistic about the future of the team. “I believe the younger members of this team will bring us success in the years to come,” she said.

Girls Golf After the first state title in school history in 2019, the team lost a few crucial seniors. Nevertheless, the team finished undefeated this year. After last season’s remarkable postseason run, it was challenging for the team to approach a season without playoffs. Senior Marina Mata was grateful for the

Photo Courtesy of Karen Hickey chance at a semblance of a season to close out her final year. “We were disappointed to hear that we wouldn’t be participating at CCS,” she said. “But at least we got to play a season and personally get closure on my high school golf experience.”

The boys golf squad opened their season with a series of strong performances but have hit a rough sport as of late. Luckily, time remains for the team to rebound and prepare themselves for a strong playoff run. Senior Austin Harrison

Boys Golf

looks to catalyze this improvement. “We want to play well enough to make sure we qualify for CCS,” he said.

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Hitting the Buzzer Beater

Boys Cross Country Wins SCVAL

10

After losing to Los Gatos at the SCVAL championships in 2019, the Vikings and Wildcats faced off again after 2 years on the Wildcats’ home turf. In the 4th quarter with 6 seconds left and the score tied 7-7, senior Laney Henry hit a buzzer-beater goal to win the game 8-7, taking home a hard-fought victory.

TOP

Victorious Underdogs

While freshman Grant Morgenfeld led the Paly pack, Paly won the SCVAL championships in large part thanks to strong performances by the senior class. Two of the top five athletes overall were Paly seniors David Evans and Aleksei Seletskiy who both averaged a mile pace under 5:25 for the 5K race.

CCS Champ

by ANIKA CHANG & JUSTIN GU

Although the pandemic temporarily put a pause on Paly athletics, the return of sports has brought many highlights. We look back at some of the top moments from this year. Photos by Jenna Hickey

In 2020, Adar Schwarzbach (‘21) became the first boy to win a CCS wrestling crown for Paly in over a decade. Constant early morning gym workouts and individual drive yielded dividends as the wrestler took victory over Donte Lopez from powerhouse Gilroy. “In hindsight, CCS was two weeks before evPaly faced a tough match against the undefeated Serra erything shut down, so I’m incredibly grateful I Padres, who were ranked #4 in California at the time. had the opportunity to make that memory,” he Nevertheless, the Vikes started strong, scoring eight said. runs in the first inning to put the pressure on the Padres. The team ultimately emerged on top with a stunning 10-5 upset. The team relied on a strong senior class including five players who are committed to playing in college. 36

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Davante Adams Returns Seletskei Skims Record

With the shortened season, senior Aleksei Seletskiy made his time on the track count as he ran a 4:15 in the boys 1600m to become Paly’s second-fastest athlete ever in the mile. While he fell three seconds short of the Paly record, he will get another shot to break the mark at upcoming meets. “It came as a huge surprise that I was this close, and now with CCS happening, I have an opportunity to make it happen,” Seletskiy said.

Paly alum and NFL star Davante Adams returned to the Bay Area and visited the Viking’s Varsity football team. In a collaboration with Eastbay, Adams gifted the team with new jerseys and signed cleats. While this year’s seniors lost the opportunity to have a true season, this was a defining moment of their time with the team.

Kim Conquers High Jump

Four-Time SCVAL Champs Girls Volleyball has been one of the most dominant Paly teams over the past four years. This season, the senior class capped off their year with another league championship as they finished 8-1 in league. This marks the fourth consecutive league championship for the Vikes and a special achievement for the class of ‘21.

Leaving a Legacy

Three seasons after Gywn introduced Field Hockey to Paly, over 30 girls tried out for the 2021 season which led to the creation of a JV squad. In 2018, the varsity team scored a meager three goals over 18 games. This year, that figure skyrocketed to a remarkable 45 goals over nine games. The rapid success that the team has found can be attributed in large part to the patience and dedication of Gwyn.

Aaron Kim (‘21) set a new personal best in the high jump, reaching an impressive 6’7”. His performance was tied for the third-best height in California, and he came within an inch away from the Paly record of 6’8”.

Paly Senior Night Success The senior night of ‘21 included a variety of sports given the condensed seasons and Paly did not disappoint. Vikings Football kicked off the afternoon with a 59-26 win. Girls Basketball then overwhelmed Wilcox 62-26. Paly Soccer was successful with the boys beating Santa Clara 2-1, with senior Leo Malchin scoring one of the two goals. To cap off the night, the girls secured a 3-0 win over Los Altos. @vikingsportsmag

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Boys Water Polo v.s. Wildfires

The Spring of 2019, Paly was in the midst of one of its best men’s water polo seasons in school history. Led by Viking Magazine Alumni Dexter Gormley and Ryan Stanley, the team snagged the only D1y CCS title in school history for Water Polo. Going into the state tournament, everything seemed to be going Paly’s way. Unfortunately, the competition was postponed and then cancelled due to wildfires and the ensuing smoke across California. It was quite an anticlimactic way to end such a promising season.

Football Losing to Wilcox

There have been highs and lows for the Paly football team for the past four years, however each year the team has consistently struggled against one opponent: Wilcox. Even at Paly’s best in 2019 they still lost 35 to 21 to the Chargers. Each year the team went into the game with high hopes to end the streak and each year they came up short. Currently, there are no members of the junior varsity or varsity football team who have beaten Wilcox.

Girls Basketball Loses in CCS Back to Back Even though Girls Basketball has dominated for the past couple of seasons they have struggled to get over the hump into championship territory. Led by Viking Magazine’s own Annika Shah (‘21) the team made it to the division 1 CCS final for two straight years. In 2019 the girls team fell to Sequoia High School at Paly with a score of 50-34. In 2020 the squad lost to Menlo-Atherton in a close game of 3432, once again played at Paly, never being able to win the game that mattered most.

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Losing Seasons to COVID-19

5

Unfortunately, no list of Paly’s sad sports moments would be complete without reflecting on the loss of 2020’s spring seasons as well as the ensuing short seasons in 2021. In 2020, the preseason was just beginning for our spring teams. As covid hit, seniors held out hope for what would have been the last season of organized sport for many. These dreams faded as the reality of lockdown set in. While the loss of 2020’s sports was a sharp punch in the gut, 2021 was much more of a slow burn. The CIF, CCS and SCVAL slowly dashed Paly athletes hopes of normal seasons. With ever changing schedules and COVID tiers, many Paly athletes were happy with the eventual shortened Spring seasons. But without a postseason, no one can pretend that things are as they should be.

BOTTOM

by ADAR SCHWARZBACH and JACKSON BUNDY Photos by Jenna Hickey

Unfortunately, things don’t always go as planned. Here’s a look back at some of the less memorable moments Paly athletics have experienced over the past several years.

Girls Water Polo Struggles

From the class of ‘21s freshman year to their junior year, the girls water polo team has struggled. Last year, the team lost their coach half-way through the season which only furthered their problems. Worse, throughout the past three years, the girls water polo team has never beaten Paly’s cross town rivals , Gunn, losing to them four times. The team has, however, closed with strong performances in the past two seasons as they upended a seven year losing streak to Los Altos in triple-overtime and then trounced them 13-2 this season.

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Class of 2021

22

Total Signees

10

In California

Marina Mata: UC Davis Golf Zander Darby: UCSB Baseball Aidan Berger: UCLA Baseball V Annika Shah: Cal Poly SLO Basketball V Sophie Kadifa: LMU Water Polo V Carly Martin: Whitman College Basketball Aidan Rausch: Whitman College Basketball Lulu Gaither: Pomona Pitzer Water polo Callum Olsen: Mission College Baseball V Leon Friedrichowitz: UCSD Rowing Jenni Solgaard: CalTech Soccer 40

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Recruit Map By JENNA HICKEY and ANNIKA SHAH Photos by Jenna Hickey

V = Viking staff members

5 5

Baseball Recruits

Viking Members

Katie Cheng: NYU Track David Evans: Emory Track Kylie Mies: Pomona Volleyball Madison Pineda: Lehigh Golf Lexi Gwyn: Vassar Field Hockey Matthew Willer: Princeton Rowing Adar Schwarzbach: Duke Wrestling V Trisha Razdan: Swarthmore Volleyball

Charlotte Versavel: Tufts University Sailing Bowman Wingard: Macalester Baseball Ryan Harvey: Lewis and Clark Baseball Photos courtesy of Creative Commons @vikingsportsmag

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Looking

Back A

by PARKER BATES, JAKE FOSTER, LUKE THIEMAN, and ELIF TURGUT

s this historic school year comes to a close, Paly seniors prepare to graduate high school and begin the next chapters of their lives, whatever they may be. Walk through the quad at any time during the school day and you will see countless seniors relaxing in the shade of the overhanging trees, soaking up the sun on the grass or senior deck, and playing friendly (or not so friendly) games of spikeball. The senioritis has set in, and the class of 2021 is coasting to the long-awaited finish line. Seniors are saying goodbye to their high school experience, but for senior athletes, these goodbyes entail more than classmates, teachers and friends. Viking athletes are saying goodbye to the beautiful world of high school sports--all the memories, games, rivalries, bus rides, teammates, and experiences that bring players together around the sports they love. They are saying goodbye to all of the early practices, home wins in front of fans, team dinners, tough workouts, and individual and team achievements that come with sports. Here at Viking, we have a deep appreciation for what sports mean to those who play them, and want to honor and support the athletes that have contributed to the Paly sports family in their time as Vikings. We wanted to share our love for high school sports and use them to connect with our community here at Paly, so we have decided to share some individual perspectives from Senior athletes. These athletes have played multiple sports at Paly over the years, experienced the joys and heartbreaks of success and failure, dazzled with outstanding individual performances, and made lasting memories alongside friends and teammates. But in addition to playing the sports they love, they have also endured two years in which COVID greatly limited their athletic experiences. Despite the challenges of cancelled seasons, overlapping sports schedules, and heartbreaking playoff cancellations, they have continued to rock their sports and are going to share their experiences with you. Let’s hear em’

All photos by JENNA HICKEY 42

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Lulu Gaither (‘21): Lulu Gaither has played lacrosse and waterpolo since she was a freshman, dominating both on the field and in the pool. We asked her to share some of her best moments, memories, and accomplishments through her four years as a Viking.

Q:

What is your favorite memory as a player in your years as a Paly athlete?

A:

“I think for water polo it was a

game our junior year. We played Los Altos at home and we went into triple overtime to the point where the first person to score wins and then I made a shot from very far out and then we won. That was probably a high point of my water polo c a re e r. It wasn’t even me scoring, it was the celebration and the unity of the team coming together at the end.

A: “Team lunches, singing, and dance

parties before the games. For each team, both water polo and lacrosse, there is a specific song that we play before every game so listening to those songs definitely gets you excited and gets you ready to play and is part of our team bonding.”

Q:

the

A:

What field

is your best off team experience?

“Hmmm good question… I feel

like we have a lot of those. A lot of dress up lunches. I remember one time after a water polo tournament we went to Chick-fil-A...they had to come out with carts because we ordered so much food and that was a really funny memory that we had.”

Q: “My best experiences have been from high A: school sports” -Lulu Gaither

For lacrosse I can’t point out a specific moment but I just think in general it was the bus rides and the fun get-togethers we had. And as a freshman the upperclassmen were very welcoming to me and the other three freshmen on the team. And I think because of that I’ve just always felt really at home and felt really happy on the lacrosse team. Our win against Los Gatos (lacrosse) our freshman year was definitely a highlight because we hadn’t beaten them in so long. It was kinda one of those moments of like ‘huh, this is why we do all the conditioning and stuff.’”

Q:

orable

What is your season-long

What ac-

complishment are you most proud of? I’m

most proud of my sophomore year in lacrosse when I got chosen for the Emily Benetar award. She was a player on the lacrosse team so that award is a big deal for us. The team votes on who receives the award and the coach sends out an email and message just explaining what the award is and what quality this player should have to receive it.

Q: How did being an athlete enhance

your high school experience as a whole/ connect you to the Paly community?

A:

I think it was just nice going into freshman year having a community to hangout with and ease into the high school experience and that you have the girls for all four years. My best experiences have been from high school sports.

Q:

How will you remember your experience with Paly sports in the future?

A:

I’m for sure gonna miss it, especially the players. And I’ve learned so much from the coaches for both sports. I’m definitely going to take what I learned and apply that to when I go off to college. It was challenging at times but overall it was all worth it and I think when I look back at it in the future it’s gonna be fun memories and vibes.

Q:

If you could describe high school sports in one word, what would it be and why?

A:

I would say gratifying because it definitely has its highs and lows, but throughout the process you learn a lot from your teammates and coaches and yourself. The experiences and everything I’ve learned from high school sports I will implement into other aspects of my life.

Zander Darby (‘21): Zander Darby has been a proud Viking athlete throughout his years at Paly. He has played baseball all four years at Paly and excelled as a centerpiece of dominant Paly teams. Darby also played basketball for his first two years, and played water polo for his first three years. It’s been a great ride and here are some of his best memories.

Q:

What sports have you played throughout your high school career?

A:

Freshman and Sophomore year, I was a three sport athlete: water polo in the fall, basketball in the winter, and baseball in the spring. And then junior year came around, and I wanted to prep more for baseball, and so I would have the winter. And so I did waterpolo and baseball [junior year]. And then this year because of COVID and the overlapping sports, I didn’t continue basketball from last year and water polo and baseball were overlapping. So I chose baseball.

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Q: What is your favorite memory as

a player in your years as a Paly athlete?

A:

There’s definitely many, many memories. The one that came to mind because I’m speaking with Luke Thieman (water polo teammate) was winning CCS championships for waterpolo when I was a sophomore. I picked up waterpolo freshman year and was able to make a start on CCS championship day sophomore year. And so I made a lasting impact on Paly and can say I can be in the record books, so to speak. Some other great memories; My mind just went to basketball. I think it was freshman and sophomore year, we played out of league tournaments with high school, and we won both tournaments. And it was a great moment because I had a bunch of different friends and then I had my basketball friends included and so I got to share the experiences, winning with them and being a part of a team. And then my third memory that comes to mind, baseball memory, was winning league sophomore year. We swept Los Altos which put Los Gatos in the lead because they had the best record and then we eventually played bracket play for the league championship, and we ended up winning

Q:

you

have

Favorite game ever played in?

A:

Right away. Sophomore year. [baseball] CCS game. First game of CCS open division. We’re playing Valley Christian at their field. It was supposed to be a neutral site, but we had a rainout, so we rescheduled to their park and it was the most intense Paly game I’ve played so far. I was the leadoff batter as a sophomore. So I mean, I had a lot of confidence, but I was also like a rookie, in the scheme of things, and they were throwing a Cal commit pitcher. I think it was the first pitch of the game, I take him left center, and I hit a triple. I get fired up. That was probably my one greatest moment. If I were to pick one.

Q:

the

What field

is your best off team experience?

A:

Yeah. So I would give two: one, for the baseball team dinners, no matter the year, whatever, we always, every 44

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week, got the team dinner. Those would be one of my greatest experiences. Like last week, we came back from the Dutch goose and some of the guys, we started playing football in the parking lot and then we went to the football field. We were hitting some field goals...I hit a 50 yard field goal, 55 yard field goal. But it’s just, messing around with your team and having fun is like one of the greatest aspects [of high school sports]. And that leads me to the other one. We had a team meeting sophomore year, led by the seniors. It was a great experience for me because I got to bond with my teammates who are older than me. And there was a big age gap, and I felt that it bridged it pretty well. I got to share it with some of my teammates my age, as well as the juniors and seniors, so we came together and had a really fun time.

Q:

Best rivalry of your career?

A:

I mean, the easiest one is, no matter the sport: Gatos. Basketball, Water Polo, baseball, it’s just all been Gatos. There’s so much tension and rivalry leading up to the game, every so often, if you step foot on Los Gatos, some students are gonna say something to you, vice versa. We see a gatos team, no matter what the team is. We’re gonna say something to them, you know, respectfully, but there is that tension. Just the games...even if it’s a blowout. I remember being a spectator in basketball, watching the varsity. It was a blowout, but there was still a lot of rivalry going on.

Q:

How did being an athlete enhance your high school experience as a whole/ connect you to the Paly community?

A:

I’ve touched on this earlier a bit, but because I’ve had the opportunity to play three different sports at Paly, I’ve had so many different friend groups, and I’ve had the ability to make so many new friends across all the spectrum. I have my friends out of sports, that actually came from baseball. And I also know so many basketball players really well and I’ve had great experiences with them. So I’m friendly with them. And then water polo. Even though I’m not playing [this year] I’m still in touch with a lot of teammates, and I can say hi to them when I see them at the quad or whatever seeing them at

vikingsportsmag.com

school. So yeah, just having the volume of people that are familiar faces across campus have been able to connect with the community really well at Paly.

Q:

How will you remember your experience with Paly sports in the future?

A:

I would definitely think of how much fun I’ve had with all the different teams I’ve been a part of. I would come away with some of the greatest memories like we touched upon: winning games, the rivalry, the friendships, the team bonding, the team dinners, everything about that. I’m going to remember and keep that in mind when I play ball at the next chapter. And honestly, baseball aside, it’s all about the experience, like getting to know people and enjoying yourself with people that you’re comfortable with. That’s the number one thing that I’ll remember.

Q:

If you could describe high school sports in one word, what would it be and why?

A:

Electrifying...memorable...fun.

In a story such as this one, it is inevitable that we miss out on unique and interesting perspectives from the countless senior athletes across all sports here at Paly. Everyone has their own story to share and unfortunately we only scratched the surface of senior perspectives. However, we hope that the stories we shared helped you learn more about what it means to be a high school athlete and the sense of community, accomplishment, and fulfillment they bring to those who play. Part of the beauty of high school sports is that they connect to so many people in the community whether it be athletes, friends, fans, or coaches. Though we cannot write down every story from all those touched by high school, we encourage everyone to appreciate the fun-filled memories of high school sports like the ones we looked at today and the fact that countless more exist beyond the pages of this magazine. Sko Vikes!


LULU GAITHER

Lulu Gaither is committed to play Division III water polo at Pitzer

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ZANDER DARBY

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Zander Darby is committed to play Division I baseball at UCSB

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The Final Word

Athletic

Immunity

by ROEI ZIV

As sports fans, we all look up to athletes. They earn our adoration by what they do on the field, but does that excuse what they do off of it? There seems to be a line that separates the moral standards of athletes from that of everybody else, and that must change. Photos courtesy of Creative Commons

A

s part of the new leadership sexual assault, domestic violence, and team, the pressure is on to child abuse cannot be excused by produce a column that will stir professional organizations in the United conversation. I hope this topic States, and around the world, purely doesn’t disappoint. because of someone’s athletic abilities. Athletes are one of the most lookedAn example of this is the Kansas City up to people on the planet. It is natural Chiefs’ star wide receiver Tyreek Hill. In that fans of a team will automatically be 2014 when Hill played on the University emotionally attached to a player that of Oklahoma State football team, he makes their team win. But to what degree choked, hit, and slapped his pregnant can these athletes continue to earn our girlfriend several times. He was arrested love and respect? and charged with domestic assault, In a world where one mistake can lead receiving a sentencing of 3-years on to a lifetime of consequences in terms of probation. employment, it seems as if athletes get a Today, Hill makes over $18 million every get out of jail free card for any decision year as the Chiefs’ primary receiver. It they make. absolutely But the second that the isridiculous No other how name is printed on the back p r o f e s s i o n a l profession in the world of his jersey and he runs o r g a n i z a t i o n s can you have in the United onto that field with 70,000 States an extensive and c r i m i n a l fans shouting his name 16 their fan bases record and accept domestic Sundays a year, he is idol- abusers such as still have the opportunity to ized like the angel he isn’t. Tyreek Hill, who make tens of they receive millions of dollars over the course of just huge amounts of money and the a few years. adoration of millions of fans across the The problem I have with this is not that country. major sports teams are hiring people But of course, a huge problem is that it with criminal records, because people can be difficult for many of us to separate deserve second chances. The problem our love for our favorite team from our is the type of crimes that are being moral values. Everyone can aknowledge dismissed as if they hold the same that domestic abuse is horrific and weight as stealing a candy bar from your should never be accepted, but this local grocery store. Crimes involving doesn’t stop some people from cheering

on a domestic abuser when they score a touchdown for the home team. The second an athlete puts a shirt of a person’s favorite sports team on, it seems like their past is forgotten. As long as they perform on the field, they will be well-respected members of the community. If I were to give Tyreek Hill’s past stories of domestic violence without mentioning it was him who had committed these actions, most, if not all, of people would assert that he deserves to spend a very long time in prison, or at the very least not be allowed to hold a position of privilege. But the second that the name is printed on the back of his jersey and he runs onto that field with 70,000 fans shouting his name 16 Sundays a year, he is idolized like the angel he isn’t. The only way to build a culture that does not accept athletes solely based on their athletic merit is by having teams refuse to give people who have committed horrible crimes a spot on their roster. Supporting a guy like Tyreek Hill should make every single person question their moral compass. What’s the difference between him and a guy who committed the same actions that isn’t a professional athlete? A jersey? Fabric on a body should not determine whether you should be exempt from criticism and be handed a get out of jail free card.

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The Paly Varsity Cheer Team Strikes their pose during a halftime performance Photos By Jenna Hickey

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VIKING MAGAZINE

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Profile for The Viking Magazine

Viking Volume XIV Issue 5  

Viking Volume XIV Issue 5, Published May 2021

Viking Volume XIV Issue 5  

Viking Volume XIV Issue 5, Published May 2021

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