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Volume 3 Issue #4 February 2010

Staff List Editors-in-Chief Christine Chang Emily Fowler Cassie Prioleau

Business Managers Sophie Biffar Chase Cooper Wade Hauser

Section Editors Lauren Hammerson Hana Kajimura

Staff Mary Albertolle George Brown Michael Cullen Skylar Dorosin Brandon Dukovic Will Glazier Alex Kershner Cooper Levitan Sam Maliska Grace Marshall Talia Moyal Dustin Nizamian Mariah Philips Mark Raftrey Allison Shorin Spencer Sims Jack Smale Alistair Thompson

Photo Editor Malaika Drebin Design Editor Varun Kohli In Depth Features Editor Kylie Sloan Copy Editors Sam Greene Erin Kiekhaefer Statistician Sana Bakshi

Adviser Ellen Austin

The Viking Palo Alto High School 50 Embarcadero Road Palo Alto, CA 94301 650-329-3837 Email contact: vikingeds@gmail.com Letters to the editor The 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 The 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 e-mail at vikingeds@gmail.com or call 650-329-3837 for more information. Printing Services The Viking is printed six times a year by Fricke-Parks Press in Fremont, Calif.


KICKOFF 6 | StaFF VIEw Paly’s senior athletes should recognize their role as leaders on and off the field.

The Li

COLuMNS 7| BOyS’ LAx 20| The viking TrIES rIES ZuMBA 8| ZOOM Staff members put on their dance shoes and 10| HOT/NOT METEr AND By THE NuMBErS test their moves on the zumba floor. 12|ZOOM by Gracie Marshall and Dustin Nizamian 14| TEN QuES. wITH MArINA FOLEy OLD guNSLINgEr 15| INSIDE THE MIND OF SAM & PAIgE BOrSOS 21|THE Chase Cooper shares his thoughts on 16| TOP 10 PALy SPOrTS MOMENTS the famous Brett Favre. by Will Glazier

by Chase Cooper

by Gracie Marshall and Dustin Nizamian

27 | grIDIrON TO gLISSADE

20| The viking TrIES ZuMBA

photo credits (clockwise from top left): spencer sims, Brandon dukovic, dukovic, courtesy of michael cullen, andy miah flickr account, talia moyal, Jim shorin, dreBin. cover: photo courtesy of karen t. Borchers

PAGE

4

6

February 20

Volume III, Issu

Talia Moyal comments on the effects yoga and dance can have on athletic performance by Talia Moyal

20 22

28 30

THE PrOS

FEATurES

22 | THE gOOD, THE BAD, THE ugLy

28| COACHIN’ THE KIDDOS

The level of danger involved in some of the worlds most popular sports. by Alistair Thompson

24 | VANCOuVEr 2010 gAMES

The nation’s best mascots ranked in several different categories. by Cooper Levitan

Whether it be for the love of the game, community service, or a little extra cash, several Paly students chose to coach club athletic teams. by Erin Kiekhaefer

32| SPOrTS BOOSTErS FOr DuMMIES The complete guide to the complex Paly Sports Boosters System. by Sam Greene & Mark Raftrey

39| PLAyINg DIrTy

The Viking investigates the pros and cons to playing aggressively and stretching the rules. by Jack Smale

56| TOP TO BOTTOM: PALy JErSEyS

The Viking evaluates and ranks every Paly team’s uniform in its jersey guide. by Mary Albertolle & Alex Kershner


Lineup

ry 2010

e III, Issue IV

PrOFILES

LAST wOrD

30| CruZIN’ TO VICTOry

61 | CALENDAr

Paly girls’ soccer coach Ernesto Cruz has lead his squad through a successful season and has a cheerful presence throughout campus. by Kylie Sloan

36| FrOM ALLIgATOrS TO VIKINgS

62| THE LAST wOrD Michael Cullen reflects on his new basketball franchise. by Michael Cullen

Mira Ahmad (‘12) recently transferred to Paly from Castilleja and is tearing up the turf. by Allie Shorin

44

wrAP-uPS 44| wINTEr wrAP-uPS Haven’t been paying attention this season? Catch-up on your Paly winter sports.

48

61

64

COVEr STOry 48| PALy grEEN. OLyMPIC gOLD. FADE TO BLACK. The story of two forgotten wrestling brothers, the success they achieved at Paly and beyond, and the tragedy that cut one of their lives short. by George Brown & Cassie Prioleau Additional Reporting by Skylar Dorosin

g

5


Kickoff

Staff View A

s we looked through this issue of The Viking, we could not ignore the underlying theme of athletic role models present on its pages. Whether it be the Schultz brothers, Olympians or Brett Favre, athletes and non-athletes alike look to these prominent figures for guidance and leadership. Why do we idolize the brawniest and most skilled? Why do their shiny facades fade slightly when they cross our moral compasses? Is it wrong to still admire Michael Phelps when he smokes marijuana, or Tiger Woods when he allegedly has affairs with multiple women? Or what about the Paly freshman baseball player who looks up to

Senior athletes should take advantage of leadership opportunity

up on a pedestal, it is hard to watch them fall. Athletes may not consciously set out to become heroes, but are nonetheless criticized when they make mistakes. A true role model acknowledges his faults and learns from them. We admire honesty, as well as those who pass the knowledge of past mistakes onto others. In this sense, role models can set the example for what not to do, and how to recover from a personal setback. Seniors should recognize that on a high school campus, they are the professional athletes of the sports world. Their negative behavior and ideas can be passed down

Seniors should recognize that on a high school campus, they are the professional athletes of the sports world.

photo by John Christopherson

the senior who chews tobacco at practice? to impressionable underclassmen. Whether or not they What qualities do we look for in a athletic role model realize it, all eyes are on them. The smallest gesture, an and why do they demand so much of our respect? Excel- idiosyncrasy or the most innocent habit are all picked up. lent field performance does not make an athlete a role A freshman runner watches her senior teammate on the model. There is a difference between wanting to play like track team take on each workout fearlessly and with confia professional athlete and following his or her example as dence, and today, she is just as composed and focus. The a role model. When deciding whom to look up to, many varsity boys’ basketball team saw older brothers, friends factors come into play. The Viking believes that a true ath- and peers take home a state championship; this year, they letic role model earns respect on and off the field, shows a want one, too. It’s a part of being on a high school team; consistent work ethic, and understands the importance of it’s a part of growing up. his influence. The harsh reality is that our role models can let us down. Work ethic builds respect, but that does not necessarily If we, as fans and people, can swallow that bitter pill, then constitute a role model. A good role model makes a young we can walk away with a greater respect and understandathlete look beyond the field ing for our role models. Someand competition time. Being a times, all you can do is walk role model is an opportunity. away. A true role model reciprocates With their actions, upperthe trust his teammates give classmen set the tone for the him and sets a positive examentire season. A good role modple. el builds trust so you can count Our society has always adon him to do the right thing. mired sheer athletic ability, but The Viking would like to encourhas also always been quick to age seniors to use this influence MOTIVATION Will Holder (‘09) inspires younger assign blame. While it may be wisely and to make a positive player Joc Pederson (‘10) in the baseball dugout. easy to place our role models impact on their team. <<<

6


newS brief BY BRANDON DUKOVIC

W

Paly adds boys’ lacrosse to its list of spring sports

photo by John Christopherson

ith a two-year-old girls’ lacrosse team, the Paly lacrosse program is still new to the 90-year-old Palo Alto High School community. But finally, after years of persistent effort, boys’ lacrosse is here at Paly. Some sports are dominant in certain areas of the country. In the south, it is football. In the west, soccer. In the east, lacrosse. Slowly, over the past five years, lacrosse has hit California faster than ever. Lacrosse is now the fastest growing sport in Northern California, and is continuing to increase in popularity. Paly parent Bill Glazier contributed greatly in the addition of a boys’ lacrosse team at Paly. The president of the Tomahawks Lacrosse Club since 2006, Glazier was essential to the movement for the new team. “Bill Glazier has run the club for a while, and he was instrumental in bringing lacrosse to Paly,” lacrosse player Elliot Beckstrom (’11) said. “He also brought over some of the best coaches from the Tomahawks to help form a strong team at Paly.” Glazier pushed the administration and district in PRACTICE The Paly boys’ lacrosse team holds try-outs where over 60 playhopes to finally get the team implemented. “Two people who were important in the process ers compete with each other for slots on the varsity and JV teams. were Kevin Skelly and Earl Hansen,” Glazier said. “Kevin is big on athletic opportunities for kids. Earl was initeam’s creation. tially skeptical three years ago, but became a big supporter, and Finally, after a long and tedious process, boys’ lacrosse is I thank them both.” holding tryouts in preparation for its season. Many high school Glazier’s connections with the Tomahawks Lacrosse Club also players are relieved and hopeful for the upcoming season. With factored into adding the sport. so many players coming from Tomahawks into Paly, the team is “There was lots of process. It is important to work the system, expected to be strong its first season. and we worked the system,” Glazier said. “I am confident the team will have a winning season and The start up of the boys’ lacrosse team was not a fluid and easy make it to the finals in our league,” Beckstrom said. “The league effort. It took time and careful planning to convince the admin- we are competing in is made up mostly of first and second year istration to allow the team. teams who lack a sufficient number of strong players.” “We were really unorganized in our efforts; there was a lot Other players are confident in Paly’s upcoming season, but realof talk and little action,” lacrosse player John Brunett (’11) said. ized that the team is new and will not be the best out there. “The reason there’s a team now is because of the strong contin“I think that this year, especially for a first year team, we’ll do gent of boys in the junior class that has been pushing for a team pretty well,” Hoglund said. “We’ll most likely lose to a couple of the last few years.” powerhouse teams, but other than that do solidly. We should be With the new girls’ team at Paly, there was hope for the boys building a solid franchise for the future.” at Paly, but there were still many obstacles to overcome in order Some players to watch out for on defense are Michael Cullen to create the Paly team. Certain district equality rules involving (‘11) and Cooper Levitan (‘11). At the midfield, Kris Hoglund (‘12) Gunn prevented the team from being formed. and Isaac Plant (‘10) are the prospective standouts. On attack, “Paly has not had a boys team until now because there has Zach Spain (‘11) and Cory Valenti (‘11) are expected to excel. not been enough interest in the sport, therefore, there were “We are in the El Camino league- the lower league with all the not parents to help push the district for teams,” Beckstrom said. new teams,” Glazier said. “We are fortunate because we have “Under some other district law, Paly could not get a team until experienced players who played Tomahawks. We are cautiously Gunn High School got a team.” optimistic that we will win leagues, go to the playoffs and then Other obstacles, including general practicality, held back the go from there. We would call ourselves the early favorite.” <<<

7


ZOOM

Forward Zac Hummel (‘11) takes a header in the Vikings’ game against Gunn. Paly went on to defeat Gunn by a margin of 1-0 after a goal from forward Kris Hoglund (‘12). Photo by Allie Shorin


Photo by Malaika Drebin

ZOOM

Erik Anderson (â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;13) takes his opponent down to the mat in a duel meet against Saratoga. at Paly. The Vikings went on to win the meet.


Kickoff

“Intro Section”

BY THE NUMBERS 100 $23,895.25 Amount of money spent from the Sports Boosters account to start the boys’ lacrosse program.

2

Pairs of brothers, including Dave (‘77) and Mark Schultz (‘78), who medaled in wrestling in the 1984 Summer Olympics.

Number of points scored by girls’ varsity basketball player Katerina Peterson as of Feb. 4, 2010.

63

1st

Appearance by the New Orleans Saints in a Superbowl game.

Number of participants who showed up to the first day of boys’ lacrosse tryouts, nearly doubling the expected attendance.

19

Age of Ernesto Cruz when he first came to America from El Salvador.

The PoP CulTure Grid Marie Furter (Lacrosse ‘11)

Kris Hoglund (Soccer ‘12)

Star wars or Star Trek?

Star Trek

Star Wars

More or less clothing?

Less

More

who’s your valentine?

Neda Ronaghi

.....explains me I...but would never tell my parents

Erika Hoglund (Soccer ‘10)

Star Wars Star Wars

Drake Swezey (Baseball ‘11)

Jonny glazier (Lacrosse ‘13)

Star Wars

Star Wars

Less

Less

Less

Cassie Prioleau

Damon from The Vampire Diaries

Ali Kershner

Muh boy Coach Van Simmons

Switzerland

Lacrosse

Kaitlyn Tracy

Party hardy

“Rip the duck*”

Stay up ‘til 3 am watching TV on my laptop

The Knuck[leball]

The word ‘ “Dope the scope*”

“Swing a big stick [baseball bat]”

* A super hard lacrosse shot

10


en

ot

HoT or

NOT

new Orleans Saints

boys’ basketball

Yoga/Dance

Coming off a 54-40 win over Los Gatos, Viking basketball advances to an 11-6 record and looks to be a strong contender for the league championship.

Everyone likes to stay in shape and remain flexible, but doing so is not always a fun experience. With Yoga and Dance classes, participants can achieve fitness and have a blast at the same time. Just ask Scott Witte.

brett favre

the Student basketball team

weight room Crowds

Emerging victorious from a 31-17 bout in Superbowl XLIV, the Saints have established themselves as a dominant force in the NFL and brought hope to a once downtrodden community.

After single-handedly ruining the Vikings’ Superbowl chances with an errant pass in the NFC championship game, Favre is yet again on the bubble for retirement, should that happen in our lifetime.

.. . f l e urs

o Y n i a l p x E

In the annual staffstudent basketball game, the student team found itself bested by the staff due to poor shooting and unfair refereeing. Notable appearances include Mr. Bungarden and Mr. Diepenbrock, who scored the winning points.

Now that the Paly baseball team lifts most days of the week, the weight room shows exactly why it is in desperate need of some serious expansion.

boys’ Lacrosse Gear

Thanks to the efforts of Program Head Bill Glazier and Athletic Director Earl Hansen, the brand new boys’ lacrosse team will play in style this year, decked out in fresh new gloves, pads, and helmets.

boys’ Lacrosse Debt

Despite obtaining the super fly gear mentioned above, the boys’ lacrosse team now finds itself mired in a substantial pile of debt. Get your car wash sponges ready Lax bros...

SpoTlight GaME 3/09/10 paly vs. Woodside Priory The boys’ varsity lacrosse team will make its debut in its first ever home game against Woodside Priory. Come out and support the latest addition to the Paly athletic program at 7 p.m. on the new turf!

“Been trying to get with him since I came to paly, now I just have to cut alex Freeman out and add it to my shrine of Jenner.” -Zac Hummel (‘11)

Want Paly sports updates sent to your phone? Folllow us on www.twitter.com/thevikingmag 11


ZOOM

Right wing Alex Freeman (â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;10) takes a throw in for the Vikings in their game against Gunn High School on Jan. 12. The Vikings won this game 1 to 0. Photo by Allie Shorin Photo illustration by Malaika Drebin


Kickoff

“10 Questions” & “Inside the Mind”

10 Questions

with

Marina Foley

who knows soccer star Marina Foley best? Brother Orion Foley, teammate Mayssen Labidi, or father greg Foley? photo courtesy of M. Labidi

Orion Foley

Mayssen Labidi

greg Foley

Ernesto Cruz

Gracie Marshall

Herself (kiddin’)Mira

G Marsh

Funniest Teammate

Araythang by Lily Seedman

Pump Up Song

Some country song

“Lose Yourself”

Kerosene

Josh Duhamel

Dream Date

Channing Tatum

Josh Duhamel or David Beckham

Channing Tatum

When people say lol, don’t laugh enough, and Feet Mofo, Fo, Retard, Maline, Marine, Marine World

Pet Peeve

McNult Funny

Nickname Favorite Teacher

when a piece of Feet, Annoying meat is close to her People, dont laugh vegetables enough (at her jokes) Mofo, Little, Maline, Lil’ S**t Mawina, Mar Mar, Fo, Mar Mac

Desirable Trait in She Likes ‘em Small a Person

Senorita Rivera

Whiners Little

McNulty

Hella sexy, must be Money, oops, I mean taller than her humor

Doesn’t matter as long as they are cute haha

Tall or Short?

a little tallish

Tall

Tall

Walt and Sam Blake

Who’s your daddy?

I’m her daddy

Greg Walter Foley aka Pops

Me (got that right)

Jo little Mart

Best Friend?

Joycelyn Martinez

Little

Little

30% Correct

70% Correct

Images taken from

14

photo courtesy of G. Foley

photo by Spencer Sims

photo by Spencer Sims

Marina Foley

40% correct


Inside theofMind Sam & Paige Borsos

ON VOLLEyBALL S: We are beasts at volleyball. We are basically like the next Misty May and Kerri

Walsh. P: We play on the court and the beach. We came in third in a beach tourney together two years ago. We work really well together on the beach. S: I am obviously better at volleyball. P: Sam obviously gets a little cocky sometimes because I obviously have a higher vertical when it comes to blocks. ON BASKETBALL P: We have been playing basketball since second grade and have also been the same height since second grade, 5”6’. S: People used to call us ‘Twin Towers’ because we were taller than five feet in second grade and we used to play post. P: We still like to think of ourselves as ‘Twin Towers’ even though we are vertically challenged at our age. S: We are still ‘Twin Towers’ at heart. S: I do not even need to look up to know where Paige is on the court. P: We have twin telepathy on the court. I will just have a feeling that Sam is open on the court. Oh, and Mary Albertolle (‘11), she is also our third twin. She is the triplet, a real twin. ON TwIN-ISM S: It’s a love-hate relationship between the good twin and the evil twin. P: Sam’s nickname on the basketball team is ET because she’s the evil twin and I am GT because I’m the good twin.

“ The Borsi”

By SP E NCE r SIM S

Photography by Spencer Sims

ON FACEBOOK S: We have a Facebook basketball family. It consists of Lauren Mah (‘10), our mother and our father, Alec Wong (‘12) who is on the JV basketball team. We are the children with Aaron Zelinger (‘12) and our dog is Jordan Plemons (‘13), AKA Sparky. We are one big happy family. We are the Brady Bunch of basketball. ON DrIVINg S: I am 16. P: I am 16 and three minutes older than Sam. S: I got my permit first. P: I failed my permit test the first time but now we both have our licenses and even got them on the same day. S: I got 100 percent on my permit test. P: Whatever! No one cares, it’s a permit test and it doesn’t make any difference! Even though I failed my permit test, I am still a better driver. S: That is a lie. S: Paige hit the trash cans one time. P: Sam almost killed a person one time. S: Paige almost killed a person multiple times and also she drove on the sidewalk once. P: Sam tried to drive though a row of steel bars so she could drive through the Paly quad, which is completely dangerous. Our coach, Scott, says I am the better driver. P: We have to take two separate cars to a friend’s house; we are not very environmentally friendly. We waste gas. S: I would get there first. P: Sam goes 40 miles per hour over dips.

Twins Sam and Paige Borsos(‘12) were kind enough to talk to the The Viking about what goes on in their minds. The dynamic duo dominate both the volleyball and basketball court.

15


Kickoff

“Top 10 Sports Moments”

Top 10 Paly Sports Moments of the Decade BY WILL GLAZIER

photo by Adam Heeger

photo by Adam Heeger

photo by Adam Heeger

The ‘05-’06 boys’ basketball team’s improbable upset over the Mater Dei Monarchs, the perennial powerhouse from Southern California, is one of the most magical Paly sports moments of the decade. The squad was led by a talented and determined group of six seniors, including Jeremy Lin (‘06), Steven Brown (‘06), Kheaton Scott (‘06), Brad Lehman (‘06), Cooper Miller (‘06) and Kevin Trimble(‘06). The team bested the Monarchs who were led by the raw skill

16

Coach Earl Hansen Fred Koloto (‘07)

Will Frazier (‘07)

of 7’1” center Alex Jacobson and Dukebound junior guard Taylor King. The Vikings kept pace with the Monarchs all night and held a fleeting lead late in the fourth when Lin threw up a prayer of a three point shot that miraculously banked in. However, this tightly knit team was not just about one miraculous win in the state championship game. The team had faced elimination seven times in the playoffs, and all seven times it came through with clutch victories including victories over Archbishop Mitty twice and Laguna Creek. These thrilling victories set the stage for the Vikings’ upset of Mater Dei, and the number one Paly sports moment of the decade.

2

photo by Nathan Lui

Boys’ basketball ‘05-’06 wins state

Brook Seaman (‘07)

Brian Karvelas (‘07)

photo by Nathan Lui

1

Jeremy Lin (‘06)

Football ‘06 defeats Oak grove to win CCS Open Division and earn state championship berth

As if going to one state championship in a calendar year wasn’t enough for Paly sports fans, the ‘06 football team pulled out three heartstopping victories in its first ever appearance in the CCS Open Division to win the championship and be nominated for the first ever California Division II State Bowl Game. “Definitely tops in my athletic career,” quarterback Nick Goodspeed (‘07) said. “It doesn’t get any better than high school sports and to have that experience is something that I know that none of us will ever forget.” The Vikings started their run with a victory over Aragon, when junior kicker Tyger Pederson (‘07) knocked home a 40-yard field goal in the waning sec-

onds. In the CCS semifinals, Paly came out victorious in one of the most hard fought and grueling games in recent memory as fullback Sione Mataele led the Vikings with five touchdowns to a victory over Palma. That set the stage for the rematch against Oak Grove in the finals, with a state championship berth on the line. An improbable goal line stand on the one yard line, and excellent play from Goodspeed, helped lead the Vikings to the 23-21 win, and their first ever CCS Open Division title and state championship appearance. “The trip to LA was kind of surreal to be honest,” Goodspeed said. “We had never traveled to a game like that before or played on TV before. Also, watching players like Jimmy Clausen who’ll be drafted soon and playing against players that I’m watching in BCS games now is pretty crazy.”


photo by Malaika Drebin

photo by Malaika Drebin

Trina Ohms (‘11)

chance for the win. Jordan Jefferson (‘08) caught a bullet over the middle in a leaping catch that saved the game for the Vikings and set the stage for the storybook ending. Brandin dropped back as seconds ticked away and lofted a pass to wide receiver Mike Scott (‘08) in the corner of the end zone, who somehow came away with it and managed to get a foot down in bounds as the clock expired and the Vikings reclaimed their CCS championship. crown.

photo by Bob Drebin

Although the Paly Vikings were back in the CCS finals for the second consecutive year, the ‘07 football team had different chemistry after losing 15 seniors and playing under the leadership of new quarterback Will Brandin (‘08). The Vikings fought the powerful Menlo-Atherton Bears and held their potent offense to a mere seven points. Although the team was considered an underdog at the start and a win itself would have been a major accomplishment, it was the miraculous ending that gives this moment its place as the third greatest Paly sports moment of the decade. With the Vikings tied 7-7, out of field goal range and facing a fourth and 13, coach Earl Hansen decided to go for the first down and the

Mike Scott (‘08)

Mike Scott (‘08) photo by Bob Drebin

3

Football ‘07 defeats MA on a last second touchdown pass to win CCS

photo by Bob Drebin

4

volleyball ‘09 goes on record breaking 33 game win streak and reaches CCS finals and Norcal playoffs

A 33 game win streak is something that is nearly unheard of in any sport, especially in a volleyball season that consists of only around 40 games. But that is exactly what the ‘09 girls’ varsity volleyball team accomplished in a season which contained thrilling regular season victories over Los Gatos and Mountain View to keep the streak alive, as well as a five game victory in the CCS semifinals over Presentation to send the Lady Vikes to the Norcal playoffs. Although the Lady Vikes

lost to number one ranked in the nation Archbishop Mitty in the CCS finals, their 35 total wins broke the school record for wins in a volleyball season. “Throughout my years playing volleyball at Paly, Mitty had always had the reputation of being the best of the best,” Trina Ohms (‘11) said. The Lady Vikes’ thrilling win streak culminated in their five game victory over Presentation. “Beating presentation definitely was one of my top five greatest moments,” Ohms said. “The game was tough physically and emotionally, since the game kept swinging in favor of either team.”

17


Kickoff

18

Adam Zernik (‘09)

7

to the Wilcox Chargers. Although the Vikings’ narrow loss in the finals left a bitter taste in their mouths, their victories over St. Francis and Bellarmine defined their season and were some of the hallmark victories of coach Pete Colombo’s career. The Bellarmine Bells were ranked ninth in the nation going into their CCS semifinal game against Paly, and ace David Stringer (‘04), who later went on to become the closer for Stanford University, pitched a complete Karl Laughton (‘04) game to lead the Vikings to victory.

6

Shane Parsons

Paly boys’ soccer ‘08 defeats Watsonville 4-3 in double overtime to go to CCS finals

After the Paly boys’ soccer team had suffered through defeats in the CCS finals in the previous two seasons, the ‘08-’09 team was not about to let the fate of the past two teams become its own. It succeeded, sort of. Although it didn’t lose in the finals, it didn’t win, as the team played to a draw with second seeded Bellarmine. However, the two victories in the earlier rounds of the playoffs are what make this moment so special. Over the first two rounds combined, Paly played in five overtime peri-

ods. After a sloppy triple overtime victory over Alisal by a score of 1-0, in which Kevin Ashworth (‘08) headed home the game winner, the Vikings moved to the semifinals to face off against Watsonville. As the game moved into double overtime tied 3-3, Spencer Sims (‘10) received a pass from Jenner Fox (‘10) and converted it into the game winner. With its victory, Palo Alto became ranked 16th in the nation, according to Sports Illustrated. The team finished with an impressive 24-1-6 record led by their stout defense and the leadership of keeper Peter Johnson (‘09), who only allowed one goal in league play.

girls’ soccer ‘08 upsets Woodside to earn first CCS championship berth in 20 years

After a disappointing 4-3 loss in the final game of the regular season, the ‘08-’09 girls’ varsity soccer team was unsure if it would even receive a bid to the CCS playoffs. However, Paly did just enough to be placed into the Division I playoffs. This stroke of luck was all the Lady Vikes needed to embark on a dominating run through the playoffs all the way to the finals. The sixth seeded Lady Vikes opened up play with a dominating 7-0 win over Watsonville.

In their quarterfinal match with third seeded Leland, the girls responded with their first upset of the tournament, taking down Leland 5-2 with star forward Kelly Jenks (‘10) scoring all five goals. In the semifinal, the Lady Vikes played arguably the most hard fought game of the season in a nail-biting 1-0 win over second seeded Woodside. The game winning goal was delivered by Maeve Stewart (‘10) on a header late in the second half. The Paly defense also played one of their best games of the season by holding Woodside off the scoreboard. This thrilling upset gave Paly their first berth in the CCS finals in 20 years.

Kelly Jenks (‘10)

photo by Adam Zernik

photos (top and bottom) by Malaika Drebin and Hana Kajimura

Although the Paly baseball team did not receive much positive press in the later part of the decade, the 2004 team overcame two Catholic school powerhouses, St. Francis and Bellarmine, to go to the first CCS finals in school history. The Vikings finished their impressive 21-10 season with a heart-wrenching 6-5 loss in the CCS Division I final game

photo by Kyle Terada

Paly baseball ‘04 defeats Catholic school powerhouses St. Francis and Bellarmine to go to CCS championship

photo by Kyle Terada

5

“Top 10 Sports Moments”


8

Joseph Lin’s buzzer beater downs cross-town rival gunn

Gracie Marshall (‘11)

Kelly Jenks (‘10)

10

9

Joseph Lin (‘10) photo by Alie Shorin

the Vikings the 40-36 lead. However, the Titans took the lead 44-43 with 15 seconds left. This set the stage for guard Joseph Lin (‘10) to add another chapter to the family legacy. As Lin dribbled into Gunn’s half of the court with seven seconds left, he could find nobody open and was quickly double teamed along the baseline by two defenders. He proceeded to somehow evade the double team and throw up a fade away jumper with half a second left. The gym erupted as the ball sank through the net, the student section fled the stands and sprinted onto the court, and the Vikings found themselves in a first place tie for the De Anza division lead.

Softball program turns around and wins league two years in a row, and reaches CCS quarterfinals both years

The story of the ‘08 and ‘09 softball teams is less about one moment and more about the remarkable turnaround of a dormant program, in which they won the El Camino Division two years in a row, advanced to the CCS quarterfinals for the first time in 15 years, and were moved up to the higher De Anza division starting in 2010. Coach Jake Halas, who came to the program in 2008, led the Lady Vikes to two dominant

seasons in the El Camino division. Paly’s success over the two seasons culminated in a thrilling 2-0 victory over Santa Clara. The winner of that game would become the outright league champion, and after losing to Santa Clara on their home turf, the Lady Vikes delivered a clutch victory. The key moment of the game came on a steal attempt by Gracie Marshall (‘11). After Marshall slid safely into second, the errant throw soared into center field and Marshall raced around the diamond, plating the go-ahead run.

girls’ soccer star Teresa noyola wins gatorade National Player of the Year Award

The illustrious career of Paly alum Teresa Noyola (‘07) was capped off by winning the prestigious 2008 Gatorade National Girls Soccer Player of the Year Award. Noyola became the first Paly athlete to ever come away with such an award and she joined the company of other previous win-

ners, like household names Peyton Manning, Lebron James and Lisa Leslie. Of 337,000 girl soccer players and 51 state winners, Noyola came out on top. The honor recognizes qualities such as academic excellence and character, in addition to athletic ability. Noyola continues her career right across the street at Stanford, where she was one of two freshman named an NCAA All-American with six goals and ten assists, and last year started all but two games. <<<

Teresa Noyola (‘07)

photo by Alek Milovodov

photo by John Christopherson

photo by John Christopherson

Nearly halfway through the ‘08-’09 boys’ basketball season, the Vikings found themselves trailing the leagueleading Gunn Titans by a game entering their rivalry clash at Paly’s home court. The stands were packed, the atmosphere was electric, and the game swung back and forth between the two cross-town rivals. With the score 36-35 and the Titans ahead late in the fourth, T.J.... Braff (‘11) took control and scored a critical five points in 30 seconds to give

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Columns

“Viking Tries...” and “The Old Gunslinger”

Tries.... ZUMBA

BY DUSTIN NIZAMIAN AND GRACIE MARSHALL Photography by Talia Moyal and Brandon Dukovic

at The Viking, our staff is chock-full H ere of athletes of all persuasions, from vi-

cales around town, swagged out (neon headbands, leo leotards and all) with their game faces on. Seeing that Alex cious water polo stars to dainty baseball describes Will’s dancing abilities as comparable to “an studs. Many of us even play more than one elephant trying to walk on its tiptoes,” we figured sport. Throw in five classes, this magazine we couldn’t possibly be the worst Zumba dancand whatever the heck Talia does on week- ers on the floor. We were wrong. These two ends to save the world and finance our entire love birds wasted no time getting down to magazine, and you’d think our lives are pretty business. After a few short minutes wallowDustin Nizamian well varied. Not true. After half a year of the ing in confusion, they quickly got to busting Will Glazier same ole’ same ole’, we here on staff are ready to some funky moves (even if they weren’t necput some spice in our lives essarily the and some pep in our step... ones everyone else were with salsa. What could this doing). mean, you ask? Well the How was this answer is simple, although “clumsy elephant” able you might be surprised. The to catch on to the fastViking has caught Zumba fepaced Zumba moves so ver. quickly? Two words: his Now, none of us who mother. Katherine Glatried Zumba are the easzier has been attending ily embarrassed type, but Zumba classes at the there certainly seems to be YMCA every Tuesday something about stumbling morning for a year and around like a fool in front of several times during a classroom full of elder, exthe class, Carla would perienced, and shockingly stop to point out that well-coordinated women the dance move we were that just makes your cheeks GETTIN’ FUNKY The Four Stooges do their best to avoid embarrassing just about to butcher was turn red—unless that was themselves on the dance floor. Clearly, it isn’t working very well. one of Mrs. Glazier’s fajust the natural result of 60 vorites. I guess we finally straight minutes of intense Latin dancing. Our instructor Carla, know what Will is actually doing when he says that he can’t go a middle-aged lady with bronze skin, fully clad in black workout out with us because he “has to go see a movie with his mom.” attire, put us through the gauntlet. From samba to salsa to bhanWill and Alex’s performance, along with our own shimmyin’, gra and merengue, our bodies were in constant motion until the which was near-respectable by the end of the class, seems to music stopped. It didn’t. Not until well after we had made down- point to the underlying message to be taken from our adventure: right fools of ourselves, and probably had more fun dancing is fun! Despite the embarrassment that comes with trythan we’re willing to admit, anyway. ing intense, foreign dance routines in front of people you don’t Carla, the never-tiring ball of energy that she is, know (there’s a video on Facebook for all you interested), and simply knew how to boogie. Nine or more different despite the added embarrassment of being laughably out of sync dancing styles made no difference. Her steps were with the rest of the room (who clearly were not at it for their perfectly timed. She was feeling the rhythm and even first time), the simple act of “gettin’ down” to threw in plenty of cool-looking (and confusing for some fantastic tunes was so enjoyable that the budding zumba dancer) mini-moves, hip turns the four of us might even be considering a and half steps that showcased her oodles of dancing return trip. So the next time a Make a Wish skills. for Kiva dance comes around, or maybe We brought along the class of 2011’s cutest couple, just a music filled Friday afternoon on Alexandra Kershner and William Glazier, to mitigate the quad, don’t be too surprised if the embarrassment. Both Will and Alex came to the you see four kids in ridiculous outGracie Jewish Community Center, one of several Zumba lo- fits cuttin’ a rug...Zumba style. <<< Marshall Alex Kershner

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r

the Old Gunslinger The viking’s Chase Cooper remembers an old great.

BY CHASE COOPER

and Super Bowl champion for his dramatic returns to football after having retired multiple times over the last few years, while others continue to admire his love for the game and child-like enthusiasm. It is fair to say that he shouldn’t have kept the Packers in limbo year after year, but that is a slight blemish on the record of a player like Brett Favre who has revolutionized the game of football. In today’s money-crazed professional sports world, it is difficult to find players that are playing purely for the love of the game. That is what I love about Brett. His genuine joy and

over and tackling him to the ground. That is who Brett Favre is. Just a big kid playing the game he loves. Brett most clearly resembles the modern day warrior. At the age of 40, ancient in football years, he still pops up from hits that would seemingly hospitalize any normal human being. Throughout his career, he has epitomized tough. Whether it be an ankle sprain, broken thumb or leading the Pack down the Frozen Tundra in the fourth quarter, he has always risen to the occasion no matter the circumstance. Brett doesn’t back down from anyone either. What does he do when 6’3”, 315-pound Warren Sapp buries him into the field and starts talking noise about it? He doesn’t walk back to the huddle and accept defeat. Rather, he gets right back in Sapp’s face, showing him that Brett doesn’t go down without a fight Brett’s toughness goes beyond his play on the field. Who could forget

TOUCHDOWN Brett Favre celebrating after a touchdown pass.

SUBZERO Brett Favre cheers in the Frozen Tundra.

Favre. For most sports fans, this name brings a slew b rett of mixed emotions. Some will scold the three-time MVP

passion for the game is unmatched and a refreshing sight to see. He plays the game like you would play it in the backyard with your closest friends, drawing up plays in the mud. He celebrates after each touchdown pass like it was the first one he ever threw, fist-pumping and jumping up and down with raw emotion. For each of the 309 consecutive games (including playoffs) in which he has started, he has worn his heart on his sleeve and has left it all out on the field. As a sports fan, you generally do not have the opportunity to meet or get to know the players that you love and admire, but Brett makes it seem like you do with his honest personality. Instead of sticking to cliché answers and saying “We’re going to take it one game at a time” as a response to every question, Brett lets you in. He tells us fans, straight from the heart, what he is feeling. I remember times like Super Bowl XXXI when he hoisted his helmet into the air and stampeded over to his sideline in excitement after throwing a dart to Andre Rison for the first touchdown of the game. Or when he hit his receiver in the back of the end zone for a score, only to celebrate by sprinting

his night against the Raiders, on Monday Night Football, back in 2003, just one day removed from his father’s sudden passing. Everyone expected Brett to take some time away from the game and gather his thoughts, as he was very close with his father. But no, Brett knew that his father would want him to do what he loves most: Playing football. There he went, out of the tunnel at the Oakland Coliseum, heavy heart and all, only to lead his team to an emotional victory while throwing for 399 yards and four touchdowns. “Pants on the Ground! Pants on the Ground! Pants on the Ground! Hat to the Side! Hat to the Side!” Brett chanted these words after the Viking’s victory over the Cowboys in the NFC Divisional playoff game, a couple weeks back in Minnesota. There he was, singing along in the middle of the locker room filled with his twenty-something teammates, wearing a mile-wide smile, having the time of his life. And why should we be surprised by this? He’s been doing it his whole career. Whether or not the old gunslinger comes back for another go round next year, I consider myself lucky to say the words: I got to see Brett Favre play the game of football. <<<

21


The Pros

“The Good, The Bad, The Ugly”

The Good, The Bad, The Ugly BY ALISTAIR THOMPSON All professional athletes, whether it is fair or not, have a choice to make when they enter the public eye: be a role model or keep to themselves. A role model sets an example that can be emulated by others. Taking it one step further, a positive athletic role model demonstrates qualities such as leadership and commitment. But not all professional athletes are role models. Here are a few who should be emulated and a few who, well, should not. MICHAEL VICK, QUARTERBACK, PHILADELPHIA EAGLES From day one controversy has surrounded Michael Vick’s career. In April of 2007, Vick was convicted of operating a dog fighting ring called “Bad Newz Kennels” in the woods behind his property in Smithfield, Va. Vick funded the operation and assisted in the fighting and killing of countless dogs. Additionaly, Vick has been investigated on accounts of possession of marijuana and theft. Just before Vick was arrested for dog fighting, he was scheduled to lobby on Capitol Hill for increases in funding for after school programs. However, he missed his flight. When a second flight was scheduled for him later that day, Vick could not be contacted and he failed to make the appearance. His mother had to step in for him.

RON ARTEST, FORWARD, LOS ANGELES LAKERS Few players bear Ron Artest’s reputation. Notorious for his role in the 2004 PacersPistons brawl in which, after being hit by a cup of beer, he climbed into the stands and punched a Pistons fan. In a December 2009 Sporting News article, Artest admitted to drinking cognac during halftime while playing for the Chicago Bulls earlier in his career. Also, Artest has been arrested for domestic abuse. Artest brings a strong physical element to his team, but fails to stay within the limits of the game. While Artest has consistently proven to be a productive player, he may never outgrow his off-court reputation.

SEAN AVERY, LEFT WING, NY RANGERS In a recent poll, 68.4 percent of NHL players cited Sean Avery as “the least liked player in hockey.” In 2008, Avery made offensive remarks directed to NHL players Dion Pahneuf and Jarret Stoll, who were dating two of Avery’s ex-girlfriends. Avery has consistently made comments like these, which present a level of selfishness that is anything but welcome in the NHL. In a 2008 playoff game, Avery turned his back to the play and blatantly screened New Jersey Devils goalie Martin Brodeur. The next day, the NHL altered its unsportsmanlike conduct rule to include Avery’s actions. Players and fans alike question Avery’s focus on hockey as he has become better known for his off-ice antics than his game time performance.

JOHN DALY, PROFESSIONAL GOLFER Throughout John Daly’s career the only consistent element about him has been his troubled personal life. Since going professional in 1987, Daly has battled alcoholism, health issues, gambling, and divorces. While stability has not been Daly’s strength away from golf, he has not faired much better competitively. Despite winning the Open championship in 1991 and the PGA championship in 1995, Daly has since struggled to maintain his place on the PGA tour. His distinct style and personal trouble has repeatedly thrown him off during his multiple attempted comebacks. While known for his potential, Daly’s off-course mishaps have overshadowed his few successes.

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Photos from top to bottom by: Keith Allison is.gd/7Jpqa, Christopher Creamer is. gd/7JpwH, Keith Allison is.gd/7JpCi, James Marvin Phelps is.gd/7JpHj


LANCE ARMSTRONG, PROFESSIONAL CYCLIST, TEAM RADIOSHACK Few people, let alone athletes, have faced and overcome the challenges that Lance Armstrong has dealt with throughout his life. In 1996, Armstrong was diagnosed with testicular cancer. Doctors told him that his chances of survival were less than 40 percent. After battling through cancer, Armstrong went on to win the Tour de France a record-setting seven times. However, what makes Armstrong exceptional is the fact that he represents a cause far greater than his own personal success. In 1997, Armstrong founded the Lance Armstrong Foundation, which raises money for cancer research and provides resources for cancer patients and their families. Through his example and work, Armstrong has become a source of hope and inspiration for cancer patients and their families.

DREW BREES, QUARTERBACK, NEW ORLEANS SAINTS Over the past four seasons Drew Brees has steadily established himself as a leader for both his team and his community. Drew and his wife Brittany run a program called the Brees Dream foundation, which works to revitalize Katrina-ravaged New Orleans neighborhoods. Brees also works to restore academic and athletic facilities in and around New Orleans. The ability to overcome adversity has been a strength for Brees throughout his football career, as well as in his personal life. In 2004, Brees won the NFL comeback player of the year award after being almost entirely ruled out of competition for the starting quarterback job with the Chargers. Perhaps the greatest measure of Brees’ character has come this past year. After his mother committed suicide in August of last year, Brees has led the Saints to a 13-3 record and a Super Bowl victory .

JIMMY ROLLINS, SHORTSTOP, PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES Through his energetic playing style and his guarantees for victory, Jimmy Rollins has become one of the most respected players in baseball. In a city where popularity is hard-earned, fans love Rollins, and for good reason. Along with leading the Phillies on the field, Rollins has made exceptional efforts to work with different communities within Philadelphia. His literacy program, “J-Rolls Readers Club” recognizes the strongest young readers in the Philadelphia area and invites them to Citizens Bank Park for a ceremony recognizing their efforts. Also, Rollins holds an annual charity event to help raise money for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. He is active in a program called RBI (Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities) as well.

MISTY MAY-TREANOR & KERRI WALSH, PROFESSIONAL BEACH VOLLEYBALL Over the past decade, Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh have dominated beach volleyball. Along with two Olympic gold medals and three world championships, the duo has earned recognition as one of the most dominant tandems in all of sports. Although the two gold medals and the 112 game winning streak are outstanding, what makes them truly exceptional is their teamwork and communication. Walsh and MayTreanor epitomize the concept of teamwork which is frequently set aside in a sports culture that tends to favor individual achievement. Although beach volleyball may be a bit off the average sports fans radar, Walsh and May-Treanor cannot be ignored. Photos from top to bottom by: Anita Ritenour is.gd/7pNw, Aquamelli is.gd/7Jq8G, Googie Man is.gd/7JpWW, Eric Draper is.gd/7Jq11

23


The Pros

“Vancouver 2010 Olympics”

Vancouver

Since Feb. 28, 2006, when Vancouver’s mayor raised the Olympic flag in front of City Hall, the 5,500 athletes from over 80 nations who will compete in Vancouver starting Feb 12 have been training for the same goal: to bring home an Olympic Gold medal. Over 16 days, 86 gold medals will be handed out to newly crowned Olympic champions.

Medal Design This year in Vancouver, the athletes that make their way to the podium will receive medals that many consider to be out of the ordinary. The medal tradition began with the first modern Olympic games in 1896, where winners received silver, second got bronze and third place got zip. Summer medals almost always depict Nike, the winged goddess of victory. However, Winter Olympic medals have no standard design. They are known to have strange shapes and are made of nontraditional materials. Over the past 112 years, the coveted awards have been

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rectangular, glass, ridged and doughnut-shaped. The medals of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games are circular in shape and look like a microwaved frisbee of gold, silver or bronze. The design is based on a larger piece of artwork featuring an orca. Each of the medals has a unique handcrafted section of the abstract art, making every medal one-of-a-kind. The undulating shape of the medals represents British Columbia’s mountains, ocean and snow, while the orca design is made to symbolize strength, dignity and teamwork. Like all Olympic medals these are unique. The athletes who are lucky enough to take home a gold, silver or bronze medal this February will surely appreciate the unique design of their prize.


2010

BY COOPER LEVITAN

Men’s Halfpipe Before Dec. 31, 2009, everyone was expecting this year’s men’s halfpipe competition in to be a duel between Torino gold medalist Shaun White and up-and-comer Kevin Pearce. On the afternoon of the 31, Pearce fell during a halfpipe run in Park City, Utah, striking his head on the edge of the pipe, causing fluid to build up in his brain. Pearce’s friends rushed him to the University of Utah Medical Center where they admitted him in critical condition. Since then, Pearce’s recovery has been gradual. According to ESPN, Pearce’s doctors are said to be “cautiously optimistic” regard-

ing his chances for recovery. Sadly for fans, White and Pearce will not have a repeat of their very close competition in the pipe at the 2009 Winter X Games. White will travel to Cypress Mountain aiming to bring home back-to-back Olympic golds in the men’s halfpipe competition. White has attempted to widen the already large gap between himself and his peers. White has been training at his private half pipe on Silverton Mountain in Colorado. While there, his bag of tricks has grown immensely. He has added such tricks as the back-to-back double cork, where the rider rotates 1080 degrees while flipping upside down twice, and the double McTwist 1260, which crams three horizontal rotations inside two vertical flips.

Photo by D’Arcy Norman

25


The Pros

“Vancouver 2010 Olympics Preview” & “Gridiron to Glissade”

Men’s Ice Hockey All signs point towards a Russia-Canada final in the men’s ice hockey competition this year in Vancouver. The strong Russian squad, led by reigning National Hockey League MVP Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals, Evgeni Malkin of the Pittsburgh Penguins and Pavel Datsyuk of the Detroit Red Wings, is looking to improve upon its performance in Torino where the team failed to reach the podipodi um, losing to the Czech Republic 3-0 in the bronze medal game. The Canadian team however, has plenty of starpower on its side. Young, scoring sensation Sidney Crosby hopes to lead the host nation to its first Olympic ice hockey gold since the Salt Lake City Olympics in 2002 where it swept the tournament. The high-powered Canadian offense also features the likes Alex Ovechkin of local San Jose Sharks stars Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau and Dany Heatley.

Women’s Alpine Skiing

Lindsey Vonn

Sidney Crosby

Shaun White

After becoming the first American woman to win back-to-back overall World Cup championships in women’s alpine skiing, 25 year old Lindsey Vonn is set to make up for her Olympic heartbreak in Torino by targeting at least three golds at the Vancouver 2010 Winter Games. In Torino, Vonn crashed during a training run and spent the night in the hospital. Despite a bruised hip, she returned the following day to compete in the downhill race and finished eighth. The gritty performance earned her the U.S. Olympic Spirit Award for best representing the Olympic Spirit. Vonn had a spectacular year in 2009 while preparing for the Olympics. She repeated as overall World Cup champion, as well as winning the downhill and the season championship in Super G. She broke Tamara McKinney’s American record of 18 World Cup wins and set an American record for single-season wins. Vonn hopes to bring home the gold in the Super Combined Slalom (Feb. 14, 1:00 PM PST), the Downhill (Feb. 17, 11:00 AM PST) and the Super G (Feb. 20, 10:00 AM PST).

Photos clockwise from top left courtesy of: Keith Allison, Elliot Lowe, Chris Willis and Arthur Mouratidis. Background by Thom Quine

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Gridiron

Football players hit the ballet bar

photo by Brandon Dukovic

by Talia Moyal

to Glissade

G

lee. It’s the fourth quarter with three minutes, twenty-five seconds left in the game. The team huddles. Down by six, one touchdown will win the game. The players take their stances, preparing for the play. The quarterback calls out the cadence, yet instead of snapping the ball, the team follows into a formation. Single Ladies, Beyoncé’s hit single, blasts throughout the stadium. Paly’s future football scene? Or will we only see that on Glee? As a dancer, I constantly defend myself as an athlete. There are many who do not view dance as a sport, but instead as an extracurricular activity. But when football is mentioned, there is no doubt in anyone’s mind that it is in fact a “grueling” sport. I would like to note this: on average, Paly’s varsity football team spends 11 hours a week practicing during their season, plus five more hours for games, totaling 16 hours a week. Its season lasts nineteen weeks, if the team qualifies for states. Compare this to my practices. On average, 15-25 hours a week, plus competitions, which last from six in the morning to midnight. Our season lasts 48 weeks. Many who comment on the illegitimacy of dance do not know much about it. Even someone as athletic as a football player would not be able to last a day in a ballet class, not because of strength, but because he needs to use specific muscles that are not used in football. That goes both ways. I would not last an hour in one of the football team’s practices. 25 out of 44 boys on the Paly varsity football team said

they would not consider dance a sport, contrasting with the popular view of many professionals. Steeler’s hall of fame wide receiver Lynn Swann participated in dance classes throughout his professional career. In 2003, ESPN featured an ad with the Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders that read, “Without sports, they’d just be dancers.” They later came out with an apology ad featuring Swann leaping over the words, “Without sports, we’d only see dance on stage.” Green Bay Packers wide receiver Donald Driver took yoga classes for flexibility. Jets wide receiver Al Toon, Broncos wide receiver Vance Johnson and Bengals quarterback Akilli Smith studied ballet to reform their technique as well. These players saw that many specific exercises done in dance could help their performance on the field. Tendu, stretching the foot in front of the body while pointing your toes on the ground, improves flexibility in the ankles and feet, in addition to increasing agility during games. A basketball player would not be able to jump without exhibiting a plié, bending your knees with your legs turned out. Swimmers need maximum rotation in their arms--stretching the back and shoulders in a bridge can help to accomplish that. In physics, we study about follow through; extending the amount of force on an object to exert a larger force. Doing kicks in ballet can improve follow through in an athlete. Imagine: if varsity football’s Christoph Bono (‘11) could follow through on his kicks, the ball could go much farther. Don’t get me wrong; I’m not trying to hate on football or its players, but if professional athletes accept dance, why don’t more people here on campus? If ballet were done in a room filled with weight machines and we didn’t wear leotards more people would do it. Yeah, it would be funny to see one of the boys in my class in a leotard, but the teacher would give him a pass if she saw him coming straight off the field, cleats and pads in his hands as he walked in the door. People can change their views on subjects once they have tried them. In this issue’s article “The Viking Tries,” members of our staff took part in Zumba. Will Glazier (‘11) and Dustin Nizamian (‘11), both football players, took part in my aforementioned poll and after their Zumba experience. Both said dance was not a sport, until they took part in the class. Football and dance may seem like polar opposites superficially, but when Will and Dustin swapped their shoulder pads for leotards, they found that despite their prior assumptions and the stereotypes associated with dance, that a sport is not defined by public appeal, but by effort and athleticism.

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Features

“Coachin’ the Kiddos”

coachin’ the kiddos Paly students coach younger kids using their sports knowledge from their own experiences.

W

hen Greta Sohn (‘11) realized that she had grown tired of playing volleyball after four and a half years on the court, she racked her brain for a way to stay involved, and decided to coach. Sohn retraced her steps to Jordan Middle School, where she first played volleyball, and coached the girls’ sixth grade B team last fall season. Now, she helps coach an Under-11 Developmental team for the Palo Alto Elite club. Sohn is not the only student at Palo Alto High School who decided to expand her sport repertoire for coaching; other students work as assistant coaches, manage clinics or classes, or serve as head coaches of younger teams. As the head coach of the Jordan B team, Sohn incorporates many of the techniques she learned from former coaches to teach fundamentals. She teaches the girls the basics in fun ways so they become second nature. “I tell them that it’s fine to make mistakes, just as long as they are giving 100 percent effort,” Sohn said. “I like being able to tell the girls what techniques they should use to pass or serve, because they listen to me, just how my coaches have taught me in the past.” One of the girls on Sohn’s U-11 Development team, Eva Herr age nine, likes that she can look up to high school age coaches. Herr notices a different energy with her younger coaches than her older coaches. “They’re a lot of fun, they’re a lot more fun,” Herr said. “The older coaches are like, do this, do that, because [the younger coaches] are still growing and still want to have fun.” Sohn knows that her team needs to have fun in order to learn, so she makes an effort to ensure that the girls have a good time at each practice. “You need to be able to communicate well, to enjoy the sport you’re coaching, and make the kids enjoy it, too,” Sohn said. “At such a young age, it should not only be about competition, it should be about having fun at the same time.” Grace Harris (‘11) and Gayle Schumacher (‘11) worked as assistant coaches for a U-6 girls’ American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) team during the fall season of their sophomore year. Initially, they took on the job so that they could earn community service hours while also spend time together, but by the season’s end, the season had turned into a learning experience for both Schumacher and Harris. Harris saw her coaches as role models and hoped to have the same relationships with the girls on her AYSO team.

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BY ERIN KIEKHAEFER PHOTOS BY BRANDON DUKOVIC

Schumacher and Harris found motivating the team to be easy, but keeping the girls focused and on task was another story. “Running drills don’t really work for five year olds, but they end up learning a lot from scrimmages and games like cat and mouse,” Harris said. Throughout the season, while the girls giggled and raced around, Schumacher found that her communication skills improved. Making sure that the team paid attention, stayed happy and wanted to play turned into a life lesson about the importance of communication. “I just learned how to be better around little kids,” Schumacher said. “Little girls are sometimes irrational. Just in terms of being able to calm them down and make them feel better when they’re crying; it’s people skills.” REACH Varsity volleyball player Marissa Florant (‘10) instructs a player in proper hitting technique during practice.


Schumacher loved seeing the girls grow together as friends and players, especially when one girl would improve suddenly. During a game, one of the shyer, quieter girls scored her first goal of the season. “She was so excited that she had scored a goal and so proud of herself,” Schumacher said. “I think that was the best moment because she looked so excited. It was absolutely the cutest thing ever.” Working in the same club as Sohn, Ke’ili Deal (‘10) assistant coaches for the U-16 Power team at Palo Alto Elite. Deal has not seen her schoolwork suffer because of coaching, but she does not always feel up to tackling a stack of homework late at night after coming home from an all day tournament. Nevertheless, the performances that her players put on during the tournaments make Deal’s time well spent. Deal wants her team to DEMONSTRATION Ke’ili Deal (‘10) explains a volleyball skill to her U-16 team member. stand out as tough, but also wants them to be remembered as respectful. and she has a lot of personality and she relates well to people,” “I try and let them know that they are representing our club Coleman said. “I just thought I’d give it a try and see if she had when at tournaments and people will remember if they are the time.” polite and sportsmanlike, but also if they are the kind of team Since Florant wants to focus on her own volleyball career at that works hard,” Deal said. “I think that it motivates them to this point in time, she does not have enough time to commit try harder, they all have teams that they look up to, there is no to a full-time coaching position. Florant has played volleyball for reason that they shouldn’t be looked up to by other teams.” seven years and played for Paly’s varsity volleyball team this seaSince Deal coaches sophomores in high school, keeping them son. She often fills in for Coleman and helps lead clinics that the on task during practice is not a challenge, but she runs drills that PAVBC puts on. Coleman has found that he can rely on Florant require the girls to concentrate and focus intensely. Deal learned to fill in for him when he cannot make it to practice and she can patience from explaining drills and techniques to her team and lead practice on her own without help from him. that coaching is not the easiest job. “It’s to the point now where sometimes, like last week, I “I have learned that I have to be patient and I’ve gotten to couldn’t do something, so I just showed up, helped her set up see the other side of sports that I hadn’t seen yet,” Deal said. “It the nets, and left, and she ran the whole practice,” Coleman gives me much more appreciation for my old coaches.” said. Varsity volleyball player Marissa Florant (‘10) discovered that To pass on her knowledge of the game, Florant creates drills she also has a newfound respect for her coaches after her experi- that focus on basic skills, but are also fun for the girls. Florant ence with the Palo Alto Volleyball Club (PAVBC). finds that her upbeat attitude and creativity help to motivate the “I have learned to respect my coaches more because I now girls into trying their best while having fun, and are good tools to see practice from a coach’s perspective and not only a player’s,” teach the girls new skills. Florant said. Florant sums up the majority of the coaches’ views on their About a year ago, Kevin Coleman, a head coach for PAVBC, favorite aspects of coaching, and why they devote so much of approached Florant about coaching for the club. Coleman had their time and effort into coaching. coached Florant in multiple sports, including soccer and volley“My favorite part of coaching is passing on my knowledge and ball, and saw her as a dedicated player with an exciting personal- skill to someone else,” Florant said. “I feel as though I am passing ity. a torch for someone else to hopefully succeed in the game like I “I’ve watched her play sports; I know she’s very passionate, have.” <<<

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Profiles

Years ago, Ernesto Cruz attended a barbeque in the Paly parking lot for the World Cup. He pointed over to the Paly facilities and said, “I’m going to work there one day.” To this day, he fulfilled exactly what he stated he would do. The El Salvador native started out as a construction worker only to turn into the Paly girls’ varsity soccer coach and Paly campus supervisor, using his personality and genuine care to charm those around him. Cruz came to Paly five years ago by coincidence. Cruz passed through Paly in his pick-up truck on the same day athletic director and head varsity football coach Earl Hansen was strolling around campus. Cruz later found that this was an unusual sight considering it was during football season, which usually absorbs much of Hansen’s time and attention. A fellow club soccer parent had told Cruz of an opening for the position of head girls’ varsity soccer coach, so he asked Hansen about the job. That same day, Cruz booked himself an interview with Hansen and two weeks later, got the job. Born and raised in San Salvador, El Salvador, Cruz played soccer all his life on various competitive teams. At age 19, he left San Salvador to come to the U.S. due to a civil war that consumed the country. Cruz said he left simply because that was what everybody was doing. “I had to start over here – no English, no language,” Cruz said. “I had to start from scratch.” Before coming to Paly, Cruz served as an assistant coach for

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Cruzin’ the junior varsity team for a year and as head coach of junior varsity for two years at Woodside. He also still coaches for club teams, so he is surrounded by soccer all year round. According to Cruz, coming to Paly was a blessing for him. “Paly changed my life,” Cruz said. Hansen saw Cruz searching for another job in the newspaper, since his construction company was moving to East Bay, California. So, Hansen helped him out once again to get a job as campus supervisor, a job that gave Cruz school-wide recognition. “Just walking around the school he talks to everybody,” girls’ varsity soccer starting forward and team co-captain Kelly Jenks (’10) said. “He’s really popular.” Cruz keeps good relationships with his co-workers, like assistant principal Jerry Berkson, as well. “He’s a great guy,” Berkson said. “We do a lot of smack talk back and forth, me being anti-soccer and him anti-baseball.” The smack talk or, as Berkson put it, constant banter, is naturally all in fun. Berkson said that he and Cruz extend beyond just an employee-boss relationship. “I invite him over to dinner at my house, and he will even do work on my house,” Berkson said. Cruz also extends beyond his job title of campus supervisor. According to Berkson, Cruz will help out with any minor construction around campus within his ability, in addition to picking up garbage, helping out the custodians during the day, supervising at Prom each year and assisting at Saturday school. “He would take the shirt off his back for anyone who needs it,” Berkson said. “He’s a good guy to have on your side.” Cruz’s personable nature around campus translates to his coaching style on the soccer field. “He is really energetic and the thing about Ernesto is that he


n’ to Victory loves Paly more than anything,” starting center-midfielder Emy Kelty (’12) said. “It is good for our team to have someone so passionate and with such a big heart.” Cruz feels he sees a high quality group of kids every year on the team that are all-around well-educated students, good kids and impressive athletes. “There is a lot of talent every season. They are tremendous kids,” Cruz said. “I have no complaints.” Jenks spent all four years of her soccer career alongside Cruz. She feels that she benefits from his support and encouragement, such as giving her and teammate co-captain and forward Maeve Stewart (’10) playing time as varsity freshmen and fair treatment that built up the girls’ confidence. Jenks remembers Cruz encouraging her to take the ball and to take people on, which she said is exactly what she needed to hear during her first year. This healthy environment made transitioning to varsity a smoother process for Jenks, but this was not what Jenks expected when she first met Cruz at a club soccer game when she was in eighth grade. “I was really intimidated, since he was the varsity coach and varsity seemed super intense, so I was super shy,” Jenks said. “But, he’s totally not like that at all.” Cruz uses his friendly character to hold the team together and motivate the girls. According to Kelty, his invariable smile and aura of happiness allows him to connect with his players and even cheer up their moods. “I think what makes him a good coach is he really knows his

WHAT? Ernesto Cruz stands surprised by a call during the Paly vs. Gunn girls’ varsity soccer game on Thursday, Feb. 4th.

BY KYLIE SLOAN PHOTOGRAPHY BY BRANDON DUKOVIC

players well,” Kelty said. “He has a strong bond with the girls.” Jenks and Kelty agree that Cruz differs greatly in comparison to their club coaches. Instead of pushing them to the edge with intensity and pressure, Cruz is more chill, laid back and concerned with being out there on the field every day to be with the team. “He holds the team together,” Jenks said. “He’s a good guy for a high school coach because he is so outgoing.” Cruz’s upbeat personality keeps him ready to get back on the field with the team members whenever he can. Jenks recalls one time when Cruz asked her if she wanted to practice her shooting more on a Saturday, an unusual suggestion considering the team does not normally practice on weekends. So, Jenks and goal keeper Alex Kershner (’11) went out with Cruz and practiced for about an hour and a half. “He’s willing to work extra, and he totally didn’t need to do that,” Jenks said, referring to the shooting practice. Jenks also acknowledges how Cruz stays late after practices to work with her whenever she feels the need to give a certain skill a little more time. Jenks gains a sense of trust from the way Cruz seems to really care for the team. This makes her want to check up with him after club season and she readily called him up when she got accepted to Santa Clara University to play soccer. Naturally, he expressed much excitement for her. “He is always happy,” Kelty said. “He loves his family, he loves the school and he loves the team.” Cruz puts it simply: “Green and white forever.” <<<

STRATEGY Ernesto Cruz coaches forward Maeve Stewart (‘10) on the sidelines in a Gunn game , which Paly won 1-0.

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Features

“Sports Boosters for Dummies”

Football Fees 113 Athletes

The 2008-2009 budget summary of the Sports Boosters account shows that out of the 20 teams that donated to the account, only half of them received the full $150 donation from each player. The other teams all contributed significant donations from more than half of their players, but some teams, including girls’ water polo and basketball, only managed to receive donations from 31% and 28% of the squad respectively. “I have been asked often by athletes whether their $150 donation goes to their team,” Sports Boosters treasurer Karan Barich said. “The answer is no.” For sports that require additional funds that Sports Boosters would otherwise struggle to obtain, athletic director Earl Hansen collaborates

Participation Fees

1

58% Paid 42% Unpaid

Soccer Fees 38 Athletes 100% Paid 0% Unpaid

with the coaches each season to determine if the team needs extra money and how much each athlete should pay accordingly. This coming season, boys’ lacrosse will raise the fee to $200 per participant in order to account for start-up costs, just as the girls’ team had done in its initial 2009 season, according to program director Bill Glazier. Golf, which only had 13 participants last year, is the most expensive sport at Paly and is unique to the athletic program as it costs $487 per person but only asks for $150 per athlete according to Hansen. Although these sports are more expensive, Hansen does not let the cost prevent an athlete’s participation. “My belief is that those kids show their skills and have a right to do that,” Hansen said. “I don’t think they should be overly taxed.”

Baseball Fees 45 Athletes 96% Paid 4% Unpaid

Sports Booster for Dummies BY SAM GREENE AND MARK RAFTREY

Team Specific Accounts Many teams include some type of Boostersupported fundraiser to build their own accounts. In order to support some non-booster funded purchases, the Boosters allow for teams to run the snack shack during basketball and football games for half of the event’s profits. Despite the support from Boosters to directly fund each program, many teams such as football’s tend to organize their own fundraisers, which ranges anywhere from car washes to coupon sales. When money is deposited, each team’s account is tracked separately and the team can only spend the money that they raised together. By default, the coach on each team manages the account, but in many cases they assign a designated team parent to oversee the funding. Many teams, including the girls’ varsity soccer team, purchase custom apparel through Assistant Principal Jerry Berkson’s [t-shirt printing company]. “The parent that’s assigned, they’ll just charge

Team Fundraising

2

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it [team specific purchase i.e. t-shirts] to their charge card, then at the end of the deal they’ll present me with the receipt, and I’ll go to Karin Barcich and say ‘we need a check for $1030 right out of our sports boosters account’,” girls’ varsity soccer assistant head coach Eric Seedman said. “She will then hand it to me or mail it to me and I make sure to get it to the parent.” After purchasing shirts, the girls distributed them amongst themselves at five per person while asking each player to sell them at $12 a piece, essentially doubling their initial investment. Besides building their accounts through apparel sales, some teams, like varsity baseball, decided to organize a silent auction and fundraising dinner at a restaurant in which a percentage cut of the proceeds were directly donated to the team specific account. By the end of the season, any residual funds in the various accounts roll over to the next year.

The Holiday Tree Lot earned $15,000 total in its first year of existence. Some of this money went into the general Sports Boosters account, while some entered into team-specific accounts. Sports Boosters invited every team to provide volunteers for the event, and the teams received a cut of the profits based on how many hours its athletes volunteered. In all, volunteers logged 700 hours of work at the lot.

Re


and girls’ sports, Boosters supports 21 teams, each with varsity and JV programs, amounting to over 900 participants. A large portion of the money comes directly from the athletes themselves, whom Sports Boosters asks for $150 per sport to participate. While it is not required to pay the $150 to play, students are still asked to pay what ever amount they can and the rest is covered through scholarships. “No one will be denied access to competing in sports; it’s [scholarships] as simple as

“No one will be denied access to competing in sports, it’s [scholarships] as simple as checking a box on a piece of paper.” -Coach Hansen

Over the 2008-2009 school year, the snack shacks at football, basketball and baseball games brought in $7,588.85 for the general Sports Boosters account. In addition to this, teams can sign up to run the shack for an event, and take half the profits for their own accounts. Teams coordinate parents and players to run the shack in shifts. Individual teams earned a combined total of $8,700.05.

Renee Comet Paolo Neo

tP aid tic ipa tio nF ee

en

Pa r

At h

At h

45

46

98%

Boys’ Wopo

27

27

100%

Girls’ Tennis

24

24

100%

Wrestling

23

36

64%

25

28%

$1,050

100%

$13,610

Girls’ Wopo

Boys’ Soccer

The annual spring golf tournament brought in $16,000 last year, the highest total of any fundraiser event, “thanks to a huge effort by one of our parent volunteers,” Barich said. The participation fee for the tournament, which Sports Boosters held at the Moffet Field Golf Course, was $150. Participants worked to raise money, or donated directly to the fund themselves.

Pe rc

let es

on Volleyball

Cross-Country

3

Pla ye d

al

Sp

Pa id

or

t

2008-2009 Income $150 Participation Fees

as

EY Fundraising

checking a box on a piece of paper,” Hansen said. The amount of money in the Sports Boosters account at any one time depends on which sports are in season. When the larger sports, such as football and track, are active, the account swells. The account also depends on when the more lucrative fundraisers occur, including the Holiday Tree Lot and the annual golf tournament. Also, start-up sports like lacrosse put a strain on the system that these fundraisers must help cover. “The account is generally in the positive, but it is very important to have a reserve,” Sports Boosters co-president Tina Bono said. This is for when teams have last-minute needs that they must cover quickly, such as lane lines for the swimming pool last year. When there is a surplus in the account, the Sports Booster money can help buy certain additional gifts, such as the new trophy case in the big gym, and the holes in the basketball court to hold an extra volleyball net.

Se

ts ers r ies

Donations eScrip Gate Receipts Golf Tournament Paly Gear Participation Fees Boosters Passes Snack Bar

The Sports Boosters fund is essentially an

account compiled of a pool of money, includDonations ing the $150 donations, that goes to support eScrip general athletics at Paly. The account itself not team specific as some larger sports, Gate isReceipts including football and cross-country, unique Golf Tournament by student participation, subsidize funds received through smaller sports to provide for Paly Gear all the team’s necessities. Participation Fees Sports Boosters, essentially, pays for evBoosters Passes erything involved with the Palo Alto High SnackSchool Bar athletic teams. Between both boys’

Sports Booster Account Info

es

4

let es

Total Income 2008-2009

Boys’ Basketball

Girls’ Basketball

Softball

74 8

27 27 7

19

80

26

35 33 45

93%

31%

77%

82%

79%

Swimming

91

91

Boys’ Tennis

32

32

100%

38

100%

Badminton Track

Girls’ Lacrosse Golf

68

68

159

159

13

13

38

$6,450

$11,325 $4,056

$1,400 $3,700

$4,200

$3,475

$4,110

$3,285

100%

$10,240

100%

$23,460

100%

$1,950

$4,800

$5,700

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“Sports Boosters for Dummies”

Once in the Sports Booster account, donations and fundraiser proceeds sit until Hansen sends in a purchase order to budget secretary Cheryle Eymil via the Palo Alto Unified School District network. Eymil updates the invoice with the required taxes and shipping costs before passing the order to one of three school administrators: Mr. Berkson, Dr. McEvoy or Mr. Feinberg. They, in turn, sign the order, ensuring that it’s kosher in every step of the process, and then fax or deliver it over to the District Office.

1 Purchase Request

3 Admin Signature

5 Payment to Vendor

4 District Office Check

Baseball Purchases

2 Front Office Processing

“What the purchase order does is tell the company that we’re buying the product from that we are going to pay,” administrator Jerry Berkson said. Once at the District Office, the request is sorted into the Finance Department where they file the order, send the invoice to the particular vendor and receive an order number. At this point, the county pays for the purchase until Eymil forwards the invoice and bills the Sports Boosters account. Finally, a signature Barich completes the order, reimbursing the school’s account.

Necessary Services

In addition to equipment purchases, Sports Boosters funds tournament fees, officials and transportation. Every team last year participated in some type of tournament, so these fees added up to $23,027 between all sports. At every home game for a sport that requires officials, Paly must pay directly. Refs incur just over $31,202 in expenses over the course of the year. In terms of transportation, busses charged $44,790.

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Sports Booster Purchases

6 Reimbursement From Sports Boosters

Fundraising and Donations

Soccer Purchases

Account Flow

Features

Photos by: (clockwise from top left) pvsbond; Fred Lynn; Rojer; Merelymel13; CLF; claytron; BrokenSphere; Photo Vandal

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Hansen’s Role in Purchases

Essentially, the purchasing process is a simple one. Any and all proposed team purchases that are eligible to be covered by the general account must initially go through Paly Athletic Director Earl Hansen. He decides what the Sports Boosters general account pays for, and what a team must buy for itself from its own account. Basically, he categorizes purchase orders and determines which items are covered by Boosters and which are to be paid for from the respective accounts. “They [coaches] come at the end of the year with a list of needs and wants,” Hansen said. “For any sport, we will fund what it takes to compete, and that’s where we draw the line.” Hansen also attempts to spread the wealth between teams; he does not allow

one certain team to make superfluous purchases, while another team struggles to fund basic needs, regardless of the amount of money within each team’s specific accounts. Although Hansen believes funding for each sport from Sports Boosters should be limited to equipment and service needs, he acknowledges that some sports require additional purchases in order to promote a strong program. “[If teams] don’t need that to compete, but it makes us look like a first class organization,” Hansen said. “We want a first-class organization.” Once he approves a request, Hansen completes the order online through the network and then sends it to the front office for further processing

“For any sport, we will fund what it takes to compete, and that’s where we draw the line.” - Athletic Director Hansen

Team Specific Purchases

Shayne Kaye; Tracy Hunter

Within the Sports Boosters’ general account, each team is given a teamspecific account, which is monitored by either the head coach or a designated team parent. For the most part, when teams make purchases from their account they do so privately and then work with the treasurer, Karin Barich, to reimburse the payments. At the end of the deal, they’ll present me with the receipt and I’ll get in touch with Karin Barich and let her know we need a check to reimburse a parent,” Seedman said. “After writing the check, Karin will either give it directly to me or mail it to the parents’ home.” By their very nature, purchases made through team specific accounts are not necessarily integral parts to having an grade A squad, but nevertheless do help build team chemistry. This past season the girls’ varsity

Team Specific Purchases

Football Purchases

g

soccer team organized purchasing Paly parkas at $90 a piece. Between the JV and varsity squads, nearly all the underclassmen purchased them as an investment for the future while the upperclassmen felt it was not necessary because they would not get their money’s worth in one or two seasons. Alongside purchasing apparel for the squad, the varsity boys’ baseball team uses its privately fundraised money to purchase gear to improve the program. Next season, following the grass field renovation, the team hopes to coordinate with athletic director Earl Hansen to purchase a new curve ball pitching machine with the money they’ve raised through fundraisers. Besides purchasing apparel and gear for itself, each team uses a large portion of funds from its accounts to subsidize payments, either in full or in part, for its end of season banquets. <<<

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Profile

From

“From Alligators to Vikings”

to

Mira Ahmad (‘12), is not only new to Palo Alto high school, but is by Allie Shorin also the starting right back for the Paly’s girls’ varsity soccer team. PhoToGrAPhy by brAndon dukoviC

S

itting on a grass circle in the middle of the Castilleja campus, then-freshman Mira Ahmad (‘12), had an epiphany. At that moment, Ahmad made up her mind. She wanted to play soccer for Palo Alto high School. 16 36


viC

P

alo Alto High School’s girls’ varsity soccer starting right back Ahmad transferred to Paly for multiple reasons after attending Castilleja for four years. One reason that she decided to move to Paly was due to the increase in academic pressure after the transition from middle school to high school at Castilleja. “There’s a lot of pressure, not just pressure you put on yourself, but pressure from your peers and through teachers,” Ahmad said. “Everyone’s like, ‘So what did you get on this, what do you get on that,’ and it’s not like it doesn’t happen [at Paly], but it happens at such a different degree at Castilleja.” Another reason was Ahmad’s desire to play soccer for Paly. Although she loved playing on Castilleja’s varsity soccer team, she felt that Paly soccer had more opportunities to offer in terms of visiting college scouts. But, because of Castilleja’s small student population, there was an opportunity in being a student-athlete.

said, ‘Okay, this girl belongs to varsity.’” One difference Ahmad notices between Castilleja and Paly is the amount of leaders that she could learn from on the field. “I think the program [at Paly] for soccer is better,” Ahmad said. “At Castilleja, there were certain people I could learn from on my team, but at Paly all the upperclassmen are people I can learn from.” Role models and leadership made the transition from Castilleja to Paly soccer easy for Ahmad. “The people on the team are so nice, and it’s nice to have people to look up to on the team, like Meave [Stewart] (‘10), Erika [Hoglund] (‘10) and Kelly [Jenks] (‘10),” Ahmad said. “It has been so fun being able to play with these amazing upperclassmen because you learn so much from playing with them.” Cruz also thinks that Ahmad made the transition from Castilleja soccer to Paly soccer seamlessly. “She looks like she’s having a blast,” Cruz

“Every time we hold tryouts, you can tell who is going to be varsity and who is not, and right away I saw her and I said, ‘Okay, this girl belongs to varsity,” Cruz said. “At [Castilleja], the advantage is that you are probably going to be a big fish in a little pond. If you are really good, people are going to notice,” Ahmad said. “At Paly it’s different, everyone in every athletic program is obviously really good, and because it’s such a bigger school, you’re obviously going to have more talent to work with.” After coming to the Paly squad, Ahmad’s self confidence with the ball continued to improve, and she became a contributing factor to the Paly squad. Paly girls’ varsity soccer head coach Ernesto Cruz knew from the moment he saw Ahmad at tryouts that she would be a great addition to the Lady Vikes. “Mira [Ahmad] is a very skillful player,” Cruz said. “Every time we hold tryouts, you can tell who is going to be varsity and who is not, and right away I saw her and I

said. “She has bonded with the team right away.” Ahmad notices that the Paly team has a great amount of talent and ability. The players constantly work hard and push each other to improve. “Everyone is really good, and the individual talent is really good,” Ahmad said. “When you have upperclassmen who are really good leaders, it just makes a really big difference because it motivates everyone to work together and work harder.” Paly teammate Erika Hoglund (’10) views Ahmad as a strong asset to the team who contributes to each and every game. “She’s really aggressive and she works really hard all game,” Hoglund said. “She puts her heart into every game and you can tell.” Castilleja girls’ varsity soccer teammate, Emily Colvin (’10), felt that Ahmad’s ag-

ATTENTIVE Ahmad listen’s during a half time speech versus rival Gunn High School. gressive mentality and drive were some of her biggest strengths that greatly benefited the Castilleja team. “She is aggressive and gives her all every single time,” Colvin said. “She helped coordinate our back-line, which needed a lot of help, and she was very influential in our defense. She was a really key player and the girls really miss her.” Paly teammate defender Hannah Ohlson (‘11) is aware of Ahmad’s capability and talent. “I feel comfortable when Mira has the ball. She’s very solid, she doesn’t really let any balls through, and she can shut down any good player on the [opposing] team,” Ohlson said. “If the other team has a star, she just shuts them down. She’s also very fast on defense and she’s very aggressive.

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Profiles

“From Alligators to Vikings”

ALL EARS Ahmad listens as Ernesto Cruz, Palo Alto High girls’ varsity soccer coach, gives her a few good pointers.

“If the other team has a star, she just shuts them down,” Hannah Ohlson (‘11) said. “You’ll see someone 20 yards in front of her and she’ll catch up to them.” You’ll see someone 20 yards in front of her and she’ll catch up to them.” Hoglund believes that Ahmad’s physical and mental capabilities contribute to her ability. “She’s a really fast player. She has long legs that just sprint fast,” Hoglund said. “She goes up for headers on balls that I would never dare stick my head out to for fear of getting decapitated, and she just goes up every time.”

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Ahmad sees herself helping the team achieve its goals by assisting her teammates and improving her weaknesses. “I also want to get more confident on the ball,” Ahmad said. “I want to work on my ball skills and my first touch because I think that those are my weakest points.” Hoglund believes that Ahmad can help the team reach a goal, like qualifying for CCS, due to her drive and talent. “She’s a solid player back [in defense]

and because of that she helps us play better,” Hoglund said. “Every time she’s out there she’s helping us get farther as a team.” Cruz has a different goal for Ahmad that he hopes she will achieve by the end of the season. “I hope she learns from the seniors and the juniors this year, and watches the way that they guide other players,” Cruz said. “I hope that she will get that experience, because I think that she is going to be a tremendous leader.” For herself, Ahmad tries to keep her aggressive game attitude and a mindset that helps her play intensely in every game. As she puts it: “I’m not the playmaker, I just do my job.” <<<


An in-depth look at the more physical side of athletics.

BY JACK SMALE photo by Hana Kajimura

photo by Allie Shorin PHYSICAL Forward Zac Hummel (‘11) uses his body to keep control of the ball.

N

ovember 6, 2009 was arguably a day of one of the poorest displays of sportsmanship in sports history. In a womens’ soccer match between New Mexico University and Brigham Young University (BYU), New Mexico defender Elizabeth Lambert shocked the world of collegiate sports. The game started as any other game would until Lambert kidney punched an opposing BYU player in the back after she lost possession of the ball. Shortly after, Lambert knocked another BYU player to the ground with an illegal slide tackle and then she kicked the ball into a fallen BYU player’s face. Finally, Lambert grabbed BYU’s Kassidy Shumway by the ponytail, yanking her to the ground. Media attention swirled and the YouTube video received millions of views. The line drawn between a solid, physical performance on the playing field and sportsmanlike behavior seems to be graying increasingly to athletes, coaches and referees alike, as athletes gain a competi-

ELBOW Lindsay Black (‘12) falls to the ground before being attacked by Gunn opponents tive edge. Whether it be a nudge in the back during a cross-country meet or a full nelson on the wrestling mat, athletes display or fall subject to physical and demanding acts of submission. Some athletes prefer to follow the rules of the game. Others prefer playing physically and sometimes even ferociously, believing that “playing dirty” brings advantages to their team and themselves. Palo Alto High School sees its share of physical contact in sports. In the 16 sports at Paly, most include a variety of possible physical actions to use on an opponent. The football field could be the first place to see physical play. With hard-hitting tackles and discreet punches, “playing

dirty” is characteristic of football, and why football could easily be one of sport’s most demanding games. Varsity football’s right guard and defensive tackle A.J. Castillo (‘10) sees a lot of dirty play on the football field. In a game this season against Archbishop Mitty high school, Castillo remembers the pain the Monarchs brought him and the rest of the Viking squad, recalling it as the most physical game of the year. While Castillo recognizes the fact that “playing dirty” is a part of the game, he believes that in order to establish himself as a dominant player, he must be physically aggressive towards his competitors on the field.

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Features

“Playing Dirty”

“Right from the start, you need to get on top of [your opponents] and keep a constant intensity up,” Castillo said. Not only does Castillo play physically to evoke fear in his opponents, but he also strives to gain a mental advantage over his challengers as well. “[When you play physical] people start to break down mentally and it can affect their game and get them out of their zone,” Castillo said. Like Castillo, water polo player Anna Glaves (‘11) believes that playing physical

of sport’s most combative and physical athletes. Of 2,200 votes for an internet poll on ESPN, 44 percent of those voters believed Cobb to be the dirtiest professional athlete in the history of sports. Although Cobb led the American League in batting average, hits, runs scored, runs batted in, stolen bases, triples, doubles and slugging percentage during his 1911 season with the Tigers, critics attribute his ability to succeed with his general disregard of the rules. Opponents recalled Cobb going to a place in

“[When you play physical] people start to break down mentally and it can affect their game and get them out of their zone,” Castillo said. can help an athlete during a game. As a varsity player for over a year, Glaves notices the benefits that playing dirty can bring. “Playing dirty makes defense easier because it’s hard to move if someone is grabbing you,” Glaves said. “Holding can also be helpful from keeping the other team from shooting.” Glaves sees the effect of “playing dirty” on her opponents. With a swift underwater pull or grab, Glaves controls her opponent’s mind set for the remainder of the game. Water polo players and other athletes can control their opponents psychologically without receiving harsh penalties for their actions. “It can be helpful beating up the other team,” Glaves said. “They can get frustrated and people usually fight back out of frustration or start playing worse.” Glaves’ experience allows her to single out which teams will play dirty. “Usually, the better the team is, the dirtier they are,” Glaves said. Many athletes believe this statement to be true, which may be due to the examples set by successful, professional athletes. Ty Cobb, a hall of fame center fielder for the Detroit Tigers, is recognized as one

40

the dugout where opposing infielders on the other team could see him sharpening the spikes on his cleats. When a young pitcher hit Cobb during his first plate appearance Cobb took his base without saying a word. But the next time Cobb stepped up to the plate, he bunted down the first-base line and, as the pitcher went to field the ball, Cobb knocked him over before spiking him in the chest. Cobb’s reputation within Major League Baseball created tension between his fans, opponents and teammates. Although Cobb’s reputation faltered in the media, he created a universal fear in opposing fielders. Even Cobb’s relatively quiet teammate Connie Mack called him, “the dirtiest player I ever saw.” The constant terror that Cobb inspired while on the bases and at the plate helped him during his career. He exploited the fear he created, making other athletes feel inferior to his glorified athleticism. Cobb’s mentality on the playing field resembles that of many athletes today. While “playing dirty” remains a common theme amongst athletes, some athletes deem the act of “dirty play” wrong. Varsity basketball player Joseph Lin (‘10) believes athletes play physical as a meth-

Photo by Jim Shorin od to gain the upper hand on their opponents. When they administer cheap shots in unethical ways, they damage their sport’s reputations. “Playing dirty is unsportsmanlike,” Lin said. Lin recognizes that athletes who play dirty in basketball become especially


STUFFED (left) Driver Malaika Drebin (‘10) is subject to “dirty play” constantly during water polo matches. the girls’ varsity soccer team, also considers the concept of “dirty play” unfair. “Playing dirty is like cheating on a test,” Kelty said. “You can get the results you want, but it’s a short cut to success.” Rather than becoming physical with opponents, Kelty recognizes the benefits playing conservatively can bring. “You can work on other things, like having good touches, and concentrate more on your passes and skill,” Kelty said. “Playing dirty is a way to compensate for not having those skills.” Through Kelty’s previous experiences with dirty players, she feels that not only does “playing dirty” affect the enjoyment of her sport, but also affects the physical health of athletes. In a game several years ago, Kelty shattered her heel when a player decided to slide tackle her from behind when her

ing to stop injury, Goldstein said that extra medical staff has been integrated into games to prevent, sustain and treat injuries immediately after they happen. He recognizes the improvement of equipment over the years as another factor as to why athletes are less vulnerable to injury. While equipment helps prevent injuries in sports, the rules in football consistently change to prevent injuries caused by “dirty play.” In 2005, the National Football League (NFL) banned the horse-collar tackle, which caused six major injuries over the course of the 2004 season. The rule became effective in high school in 2009. In this maneuver, a defender tackles another player by grabbing the back-inside of their opponent’s shoulder pads from behind and then by pulling them down. The illegal tackle poses serious threats to opponents because of the awkward position he falls in. In an NFL game on Dec. 19, 2004, the

“Playing dirty is like cheating on a test,” Kelty said. “You can get the results you want, but it’s a shortcut to success.”

prone to poor relationships among opponents and on-lookers. “People will see when you play dirty, and the players on the court see it even more,” Lin said. “If you get caught, you’ll be named a ‘dirty player’ and be known as a dirty player, which isn’t the best thing.” Emy Kelty (‘12), a center midfielder on

back was turned, after the play had ended. After six months of intensive physical therapy, Kelty returned to her team, the Juventus Victory, and finished her season. Her opinion on “dirty play” did not change after the incident. According to Kelty, playing safe creates a lot less injuries. However, Paly athletic trainers Josh Goldstein and John Tamez believe that while athletes assume injuries, due to “dirty play,” are more common, record keeping of injuries has improved. Tamez believes athletes are less likely to get hurt during play due to strength training programs. “With strength training programs being a big part of the game, athletes are becoming less susceptible to injury,” Tamez said. Along with improved methods of train-

Dallas Cowboys took on the Philadelphia Eagles. With 14 minutes and 30 seconds left in the third quarter, Cowboy safety Roy Williams used a horse-collar tackle on the Eagles’ wide receiver Terrell Owens. Williams grabbed Owens by the back of his shoulder pads and yanked him down, where he landed on his back. Owens’ right foot got caught in the turf on his way down and, as a result, he fractured his right fibula and tore ligaments in his ankle. Owens sat out for seven weeks. While equipment, rules and trained medical staff help prevent serious injuries on the field, referees must stop “dirty play” from happening in the first place. United Football League referee Terri Valenti sees “dirty play” all the time. In order for her and other referees to put a stop to physical play, Valenti stresses the importance of preventative officiating.

41


“[Referees] need to make a physical presence,” Valenti said. “We need to make sure the players know we’re there and watching. If players are getting out of hand, it’s important that we step in quickly.” Valenti said that games can easily get out of hand if they are not handled appropriately. “Dirty play is very contagious,” Valenti said. “You will always find someone who wants to start something. It’s on us as officials to work with preventative officiating.” “Playing dirty” affects the basic concept of sports themselves, too. “Playing dirty stops making the game fun for everyone,” Valenti said. Palo Alto Soccer Club referee Bernardo Tapia also sees how “dirty plays,” in sports like soccer, change the way athletes play. The presence of a single dirty player is enough to affect the spirit of the game. “[Soccer players] think that [playing dirty] gives them some sort of advantage during the game,” Tapia said. “They will do whatever they can to gain possession of the game.” While the players are directly respon-

“Playing Dirty” photo by Linda Cullen

Features

TAKE DOWN A.J. Castillo (‘10) uses physical play to dominate opponents on the wrestling mat.

in developing his or her players. “The bottom line is that it is the coaches’ job to address [dirty play] and make it clear that it is not to be tolerated,” Peters said. “Playing dirty eventually catches up to you one way or another. It is a bad habit that, if allowed to flourish, can’t be turned on and off like a light switch. This leads to poor discipline and execution. It’s

“Dirty play is very contagious,” Valenti said. “You will always find someone who wants to start something. It’s on us as officials to work with preventative officiating.” sible for “dirty play,” Tapia believes coaches are the root of this universal problem in sports. “Players are a reflection on how their coaches act on poor playing,” Tapia said. “If they allow that to go on, that’s really where the game should be brought up. We should have good and positive coaching.” Girls’ varsity basketball coach Scott Peters could not agree more with Tapia’s views on the importance of a coach’s role

42

a mentality that doesn’t lead to long term skill development.” During one game, Peters saw one team display a particularly excessive amount of “dirty play.” He recalls frequent kicking and shoving of the opposing team and said it was “just plain wrong.” He was even more disappointed in the coach, who did nothing to stop his team’s play. While Peters did not enjoy coaching that game, he made sure his players did not stoop to their opponents’ level. Instead, Peters expressed the importance

of playing harder and safer, reassuring his team that doing so would pay off in the end. “When going against teams that play dirty, you must play even stronger and harder,” Peters said. “This does two things: it lets the other team know that you can’t be intimidated and it usually causes the other team to go even further down their dirty path; this hopefully forces the referees to start calling the game tighter.” Looking back on that unforgettable soccer game between New Mexico and BYU, people will view it in many ways. Lambert pulled a girl down by her ponytail. Will she been seen as just another girl with unsportsmanlike behavior, or do her actions go deeper than that? The underlying issue still remains: how will people interpret this? Some may see it as wrong because she went against the rules, others may admire her for physical play. But in the end, this moment was more than just brutal punches to be watched over and over again on YouTube; it was the message Lambert sent to the sports world that millions must consider for themselves. “In baseball and in every other sport, what separates the Hall of Famers from the Average Joes is skill, talent, and hard work,” Frosh-Soph baseball player Jacob Lauing (‘12) said. “Athletes believe this type of conduct contributes to their success, but in the end, the injuries and suspensions outweigh any benefits.” <<<


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Wrap-Ups

“2010 Winter Wrap-Ups”

2010 Winter Wrap Ups

From left to right, photos by Malaika Drebin

Highlight Game:Boys’ Soccer vs. Los Gatos

Paly boys’ varsity soccer team gets into a fight against the Los Gatos Wildcats. Mark Raftrey (‘11) punches Wildcats player in the last three minutes of the game. The final score of the game would be 0-0.

photo by Malaika Drebin

wrestling

44

Jack Sakai (‘10) wrestles opponent at Saratoga on December 17th. Paly beat Saratoga 51-22 bringing their overall record to 3-2 so far in the season.

Coach: David Duran League Standing: 3rd in SCVAL

Top Dual: vs. Fremont on 1/28/10

The Palo Alto High School varsity wrestling (3-2 in league, 3-3 overall) team has enjoyed both success and disappointment two thirds of the way through the regular season. After a rousing victory in their first league dual against Saratoga (winning 51-22), the Vikings were disappointed after a close loss to Cupertino. The Vikings would not stay down for long, however, and they bounced back with an epic triumph over the Wilcox Chargers. The Vikings then lost to the Los Gatos Wildcats (25-48) and then defeated Fremont (42-32). Notable player performances include those of Jack Sakai (‘10) and A.J. Castillo (‘10). Sakai won a crucial match against Wilcox with a pin and Castillo had pins against both Wilcox and Fremont. “So far, the season has been going really well,” Sakai said. “The beginning was rough, but I improved a lot. I put a lot of hard work in this season and its starting to pay off.”

Four underclassmen that have performed well this season are Ryan Oshima (‘12), Nick Ortiz (‘12), Joey Cristopherson (‘12) and Gabe Landa (‘12). Landa pinned a Saratoga wrestler in his very first varsity match. “A lot of other schools have good small wrestlers.” Michael Cullen (‘11) said, “Our young guys have really stepped up and have helped in getting us the points we need to succeed this season.”

Key Stats

Key Games:

Saratoga: 51-22 Los Gatos: 25-48 Fremont: 42-32

Key Players: Jack Sakai (‘10) A.J. Castillo (‘10) Joey Christopherson (‘12)


photo by Hana Kajimura

girls’ Soccer

Kaitlyn Patterson (‘10) dribbles the ball during a game versus Gunn High School. The Lady Vikes won 2-0.

photo by Talia Moyal

Boys’ Soccer

Jenner Fox (‘10), Alex Freeman (‘10), and Zac Hummel (‘11) celebrate after their 1-0 victory over Gunn.

Coach: Ernesto Cruz League Standing: 4th in SCVAL The Palo Alto High School girls’ varsity soccer team (6-5-2, 3-3) has had a shaky beginning to its season, but is looking forward to improving in the latter half of the league season leading up to Central Coast Section (CCS). With four games left in league play, the Lady Vikes hope to finish strong and end with a high seed in CCS brackets. With a few early losses to Monta Vista High School (0-2), Los Gatos High School (1-2) and Mountain View High School (0-3), the girls picked it up against Homestead High School, where the team won 3-1, and tying Monta Vista 1-1 in a league rematch. Members of the team are optimistic about the rest of the season, with forward and captain Maeve Stewart (‘10) enthusiastic about the remainder of the games. “The first half of the season was rocky, but hopefully it will be all up from here,” Stewart said. “We are definitely coming

Coach: Donald Briggs League Standing: 2nd in SCVAL

As the Palo Alto High School boys’ varsity soccer team (7-3-5, 4-1-2) approaches midseason, the team looks to improve its play to a level worthy of yet another Central Coast Section (CCS) playoff appearance. Despite strong play from midfielder Jenner Fox (‘10), forward Ethan Plant (‘10) and left back Mark Raftrey (‘11), the Vikings have had trouble creating opportunities on the offensive front. The team took home key victories against league opponents Mountain View High School and cross-town rival Gunn High School. However, disappointing ties against Los Gatos High School and Milpitas High School have held the Vikings back. Although they lead its league, some players believe that the team has not played to the best of their abilities. “After [winter break] we were a little rusty,” outside midfielder Alex Freeman (‘10) said. “Now we’re playing much better and more as a team.”

Top Game: Gunn 1-0 together as a team.” Not only are the players hopeful for a solid standing going into league finals and CCS play, but head coach Ernesto Cruz also shares their sentiments. “Right now we are doing a lot better,” Cruz said. “The girls are already bonding. I think we will have a great end to the season. It’s not how you start, it’s how you finish.”

Key Stats

Leading Scorers:

Kelly Jenks: 7 goals Erika Hoglund: 3 goals Gracie Cain: 2 goals Marina Foley: 2 goals

Key Games

Gunn: 2-0 Los Altos: 3-0 Monta Vista: 1-1

Top Game: Gunn 1-0 On Jan. 26, the Viking’s tied with Milpitas High School 1-1. After the team trailed 1-0 entering the second half, midfielder John Richardson (‘11) crossed the ball onto the other side of the field where Freeman headed it in. The following week, Paly took on the Monta Vista Mustangs. Within the first 10 minutes of the game the Vikings scored all of its goals. “I think we’ll do pretty well [for the remainder of the season],” Anderton said, “Usually, we pick it up before CCS, so we’ll be OK.”

Key Stats

Leading Scorers:

Ethan Plant: 5 goals Kris Hoglund: 2 goals Sam Greene: 2 goals

Key Games

Gunn: 1-0 Los Gatos: 0-0 Mountain View: 1-0

45


“2010 Winter Wrap-Ups”

girls’ Basketball

Coach: Scott Peters League Standing: 5th in SCVAL

photo by Allie Shorin

Wrap-Ups

Victoria Shih (‘10) takes on defenders at the first game against Gunn. Shih was the leading scorer for the game.

photo by Talia Moyal

Boys’ Basketball

46

Charlie Jones (‘11) dunks on a Gunn defender on January 11th, 2010. The Vikings went on to be the Titans 45-37.

Top Game: Wilcox 51-45 (OT)

The Palo Alto High School girls’ varsity basketball team (3-4, 10-7) enters into the last weeks of its regular season looking to finish strong and qualify for Central Coast Section (CCS) playoffs. After losing all five starters from last year, the Lady Vikes have had a surprising turn-around. With consistent stand-out performances from Katerina Peterson (‘11), Stephanie Allen (10’) and Emilee Osagiede (‘12), the Vikings have racked up important wins against Wilcox and Saratoga. “The Wilcox game was really important because the last two years they have been the best team in our league,” Mariah Philips (‘11) said. “It was a great way to start of the season. Despite a strong showing early in the season, the team only recently broke its four game losing streak in league with a 62-52 win over Saratoga. A mid-season lapse dropped the team to sixth place in

its seven-team division. “The team has performed well, but we could have done better,” Peterson said. “Our strengths are our athleticism and our heart.” The Lady Vikes tend to run into trouble by committing too many fouls, giving their opponent easy points. “Our weaknesses are fouling and running our offenses in general,” Peterson said. “We can’t run through a play completely.”

Coach: Andrew Slayton League Standing: 1st in SCVAL

Top Game: Los Gatos 61-62 (OT)

Starting off the 2009-2010 season to a slow start, the Palo Alto High School’s boys’ varsity basketball team pulled together to put away consecutive games, qualifying for CCS playoffs and now holding first in league. Transitioning between coaches this season, the boys welcomed returning coach of the 2005-2006 state championship team, Bob Roehl, with high expectations in league. Leading the offense, returning player Max Shmarzo (‘11) supports the team with his relentless three pointers and tireless work ethic. In key match-ups, including the home game against Los Gatos, Shmarzo helped direct the offense alongside guard Joseph Lin(‘10) to drive to the net, widen the point spread and secure the win. After falling short to a buzzer-beater at their away game against Los Gatos, the boys recognized their potential to take league and capitalized in the coming matches. With four games left in

league to determine their seeding in CCS, the squad looks to keep up their aggressive play and secure their first in league title. “Now we’re just playing like a championship caliber team,” guard Brandon Rider (‘10) said. With a league title in their grasp, the boys look forward to their first CCS game where they expect to beat out their competition and work their way up to a championship.

Key Stats

Leading Scorers:

Katerina Peterson: 100 pts. Stephanie Allen: 87 pts. Emilee Osagiede: 81 pts.

Key Games Wilcox 51-45 (OT) Saratoga 62-52 Mountain View 47-49

Key Stats

Leading Scorers: Joseph Lin: 152 pts. Max Shmarzo: 145 pts. Davante Adams: 137 pts.

Key Games Los Gatos Gunn Los Gatos

61-62 (OT) 45-37 54-40


Photo by Allie Shorin

Steven Kerr (â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;10) secures the ball on the ground during a home game against Gunn High School. The Vikings defeated the Titans by a score of 45-37.

ZOOM


Cover Story

“Paly Green. Olympic Gold. Fade to Black.”

photo of Dave Shultz (photographer unknown) is part of Dave Duran’s collection of photos

48


Paly Green.

Olympic Gold. Fade to Black.

BY GEORGE BROWN & CASSIE PRIOLEAU DESIGN BY EMILY FOWLER ADDiTiONAL REPORTiNG By SKyLAR DORSiN

With the Vancouver

Olympics in full swing,

fans around the world watch the world’s best athletes and

pick their heroes. They dream of what it would be like to stand on the podium with a medal around

their own neck. But by the time the next Olympic games roll around many of these heroes are forgotten. The gold fades with time and these great athletes fall into obscurity.

Around campus at Palo Alto High School, not many people recognize the last name Schultz. But wrestlers do. They recognize the name of the “Paly wrestling legends” who went to Paly in the 70s. They wrestle under pictures of the two. But other than that, Dave and Mark Schultz are dusty heroes.

49


Cover Story DaVe anD Mark won nearly every title an amateur wrestler could. They both won California state championships as Paly students, went on to take NCAA , world championship and Olympic titles, as well. Wherever they were, Dave and Mark were always looking ahead toward the next step. In 1996, Dave was training for the Olympics in Atlanta with hopes of taking home a second gold medal when he was shot and killed on a wrestling facility in Pennsylvania by a wrestling patron. Ever since, Mark and the wrestling world have been looking back, remembering the loss of Dave, but also the legacy he left behind. tHe StOrY starts in Palo Alto.

“Paly Green. Olympic Gold. Fade to Black.” ered the floor. Today, the room is grimy and cramped. The small room standing in the shadow of the gym seems far too small for all the weights, machines and constant flow of athletes. Mark and Dave spent hours upon hours in this room, sweating and working toward their next match or tournament. Phil, a professor at Menlo College, went to competitions to see his sons compete, but never pushed them to be great. They did that on their own. Dave was the technician and Mark the physical grappler. But there was one thing that seemed to run in their Schultz blood: a love of winning and a ferocity on the mat. As middle school boys they trained with high school and college wrestlers.

gOLD Dave (left) and Mark Schultz show off their freestyle wrestling gold medals at the 1984 Olympic games.

photo courtesy of Sports Illustrated

50

anything,” Horpel said. “But within a year, he had placed fourth in CCS, and also fourth in state.” Within just a few years of picking up the sport, wrestling completely consumed Dave’s life. “He lived, breathed, drank, ate wrestling,” Hart said. “He walked around campus with his wrestling shoes tied around his neck-– literally. He didn’t even bother to get his driver’s license or anything when he turned 16 because he didn’t have time to take the class or anything. He wanted to just think about wrestling.” Dave’s tunnel vision and an intense focus kept him committed to wrestling above all else. Hart remembers how Dave started dating a girl during his senior year and told her

The Schultz family lived in a blue house with white trimming on a quiet street winding down the Palo Alto Creek. A large redwood tree stands in front of the house and the backyard hosts two palm trees. The Schultz brothers lived here with their father. Dave and Mark’s father, Phil Schultz, raised the brothers in Palo Alto while their mother, Dorothy St. Germain, lived in Oregon. From the beginning, Dave and Mark made one point very clear – wrestling was their thing. They found the Paly wrestling room by themselves. The room that Dave and Mark knew as the wrestling room is now Paly’s weight room. Thirty years ago, this room seemed more spacious. Instead of carelessly discarded free weights, the floors wrestling mats cov-

Even as a freshman at Jordan Junior High (as it was called then) in Palo Alto, Dave knew the weight room’s space well. The chubby and even unathletic-looking ninth grader was still a year away from becoming a Viking, but he practiced with the Paly team under then-coach Ed Hart, soaking up every piece of information along the way. Current Gunn High School wrestling coach and athletic director Chris Horpel first met Dave when Horpel was already an NCAA All-American wrestler for Stanford. The 14-year old Dave walked across El Camino from Paly, asking the 21-year old Horpel to wrestle with him. Horpel agreed, hoping to get rid of the middle schooler after a few sessions. To his surprise, Dave kept coming back. “At first it was like wrestling a puppy dog, and I didn’t think he was going to amount to

right off the bat that wrestling was his life, and that she had better not try to interfere. “So, one day she says ‘Don’t you think you’re spending a little too much time with wrestling and you should spend more with me?’ And boom, he dropped her,” Hart said.

aS a HiGHSCHOOLer, Dave competed at the world level. Dave’s success was unexpected for most people who knew him at the time because Dave not only looked unathletic, but he also did not have the ego of a great athlete. Everyone knew how seriously Dave took wrestling, but his humble attitude did not call attention to his great talent. Walking around Paly, everyone saw his wrestling shoes around his neck. They knew he had his singlet on underneath his clothes. But only some of his classmates actually saw him


state championships, Dave wrestled with the world’s best and gave them a run for their money. As the youngest on Team USA, Dave finished second at Tbilisi in 1977. As a high school senior, he placed higher than any American on that trip to Europe. After this kind of a performance, the California state championship would be a piece of cake. When Dave returned to Palo Alto, he had missed the league finals, and therefore could not compete in the state championship tournament. But coach Hart got all of

NCAA All-AmeriCAN wrestler NCAA All-AmeriCAN wrestler NCAA All-AmeriCAN wrestler NCAA ALL-AMErICAN wrESTLEr While Mark tagged along with Dave on the frequent trips to Paly in middle school, Hart wagered that Mark could learn to do a backflip in five minutes. Hart remembers Mark protesting, “No you can’t [teach me one], no way.” Nevertheless, after five minutes of routines, Mark did it. Just like that. Mark followed Dave to many of his practices, although Mark’s wrestling career

FErOCITy Dave savagely drags his opponent to the mat in the first round of the ‘84 Olympics.

Dave began to develop a move he would later be known for - he would choke out his opponent using the crook of his arm (an illegal move) and then shake him around to emulate the other wrestler fighting back. After he pinned his opponent, Dave would quickly slap him to bring him back to consciousness. Dave usually got away with it. With this focus, Dave broke onto the world stage even as a high school student. The older brother qualified to travel with the USA team to the Tbilisi tournament in the Soviet Union during his senior year. While Tbilisi is no longer in effect, at the time, it provided the world’s most challending competition as countries could enter multiple competitors. , including wrestling powerhouse, the Soviet Union. While all the other high school wrestlers in California were preparing for the

the other coaches in the league to sign a petition so that Dave could compete. This petition, above all other aspects of the tournament proved to be the most difficult part for Dave. He wrestled in the 165 pound weight class – higher than his usual weight – and still pinned all but one opponent. His closest match was 12-1, which he won for the state championship.

Mark SCHuLtz, just a year younger than his brother, was never far behind. “Mark truly admired David,” their father Phil, who still lives in Palo Alto, said. “David was sort of an icon for him. I think Mark actually adored David. In some measure, Dave became Mark’s mentor and to some extent from time to time he fathered Mark because Mark didn’t listen to me. Thank God he listened to one of us.”

would not take off until his senior year, while Dave was in college. Mark did not even become involved in organized athletics until eighth grade despite the fact that coaches, teammates and family members describe him as a natural athlete. Teach Mark a move and he knew it. Introduce a new sport and he dominated. Horpel compared working with Mark to programming a computer -- once he knew a technique, he could implement it immediately. Mark, after having family issues in Palo Alto during the first part of high school, moved to Oregon with their mother in his junior year. Mark started to wrestle while in Oregon, and returned to Palo Alto again for his senior year after becoming frustrated with his coach in the Beaver State. A late joiner of the sport, Mark lacked experieince, but it did not take him long to catch on.

photo by Karen T. Borchers/Mercury News Olympic Bureau

on the mat, when he put on his uniform and transformed into a world class wrestler. “[Dave] walked around like he was just another high school kid,” Paly teammate Jeff Newman (‘78), who wrestled at 165 pounds, said. Newman, 50, is now a chief financial officer for a real estate firm and lives in Pasadena, Calif. “Dave was like Clark Kent going into a phone booth,” Newman said. “He would get on the mat and dominate, and walked off like an old man that could not move very fast.” Dave studied the sport, analyzing techniques and breaking down each move. To Dave, wrestling was like a chess match. He knew he could not always overpower his opponent with strength, but Dave could outthink him.

51


Cover Story

“Paly Green. Olympic Gold. Fade to Black.”

Mark remembers coming back to Paly for his senior wrestling season after working out with the Stanford wrestling team all summer long. In practice, Mark took down Hart, who had not seen the younger of the Schultz brothers for a year, about ten times in a row. Mark went 15-2 his senior year at Paly, winning the league, region, section and state championships at the 154 pound weight class for Paly in 1978, only a year after Dave won the same title. Mark transformed from a beginner to a state champion in just over a year.

wHiLe Mark GaineD a StrOnG foothold for himself in wrestling, Dave wrestled for Oklahoma State in Stillwater, Okla. on a wrestling scholarship. But it did not take long for the brothers to reunite. “They had been training together since they were kids,” Alexander Schultz, Dave’s son who attends Foothill College, said of his father and his uncle. “They were both pretty mean on the mat. Mark’s kind of mean off the mat, my dad is nice off the mat.” Dave transferred to UCLA for his sophomore year where his brother Mark, former Paly teammate Newman and Horpel all reunited. After a year filled with disputes in

MARK

Kicked off of gymnastics team and moves to Oregon

in tHOSe 1984 OLYMPiCS, extra referees were assigned to both Dave (74 kg) and Mark’s matches. These referees closely monitored Mark, who wrestled above Dave in the 82 kilogram weight class (181 pounds), after

Places first in SCVAL all around gymNorthern California Moves nastics; 14-15 Gymnastics denied back to Champion medals Palo Alto

1975

1976

Wins Great Plains Places over 2-time NCAA 4th in champion Chuck CCS and Yagla in Nebraska 4th in State as Wins CIF State a sophoChampionship & more graduates

COLLEgE NCAA Champion

1978

Places 2nd at Tbilisi and highest among Americans

52

Mark broke his opponent’s arm in his first match. Officials also watched Dave closely to make sure he did not choke anyone out. The brothers came home from Los Angeles, each with a gold medal. Mark followed up his medal with two world titles, in 1985 and 1987. Along the way, the two had make a living in a sport that had little money to go around. High school and college offer amateur wrestlers like the Schultzes the chance to prosper while in a sheltered environment. But after college, the financial road gets rocky, and few opportunities allow wrestlers to train while eking out a living. “There’s only one way for [amateur] wrestlers to survive in America and compete on an Olympic level, and that’s to become a coach somewhere,” Mark said. That is just what the Schultz brothers did. After both brothers coached alongside Horpel at Stanford from 1983 to 1986, the two parted, though they both continued coaching and wrestling simultaneously. Dave took a job as a coach for the University of Wisconsin and got married. During this three year coaching stint in Wisconsin, wife Nancy and Dave had their two children, Alexander and Danielle Schultz.

Wins CIF State Championship after not winning a single tournament before Leagues

PALy 1977

DAVE

Los Angeles, however, the brothers landed together at Oklahoma University in Norman, Okla. Living together at Oklahoma University, Mark (now in the 177 pound weight class) and Dave (at 163 pounds) continued to dominate, both winning NCAA titles in 1982. Mark also won the NCAA championships in ‘81 (in the 163 pound class) and ‘83 (177 pounds). More importantly, these college years were the first time the brothers had wrestled together. “[Dave] was kinda like a father figure and a brother and a coach all rolled up into one for me,” Mark said of his older brother. “And I was kinda like his disciple.” Dave continued to turn heads after graduating ing 1982 by winning the 1983 World Championships, all the while preparing with his brother for the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. “Nobody was gonna beat him,” Mark said of Dave. “And he said, ‘Oh, I just work hard.’ He’s just a real humble guy.”

Both brothers attend 1979 UCLA along 1980 with Chris Horpel and Jeff Newman

Wrestles for Oklahoma State. Named as an All American.

NCAA Champion & unanimously voted “outstanding wrestler”

1983

Brothers 1981 transfer to 1982 Both NCAA Oklahoma Champions University Senior Freestyle world champion

1984

Tbilisi Champion

Olympic gold Medalists (Dave @ 74 kg; Mark @ 82 kg)

O


4

olympic gold olympic gold olympic gold OLyMPIC OL OLy y MPIC gOLD g OLD Even though Dave would continue to wrestle internationally until 1996, Mark’s amateur wrestling career ebbed out after he did not live up to his expectations in the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, South Korea. Mark continued coaching, but turned to a more aggressive style of wrestling called grappling during the 1990’s.

DaVe’S firSt triP tO ruSSia for the Tbilisi tournament in his senior year in 1977 marked the beginning of yet another special relationship that Dave Schultz shared. In the years following, Dave made many trips back to Russia. He took first place at Tblisi twice in later years, a feat never accomplished by any other American. Dave’s passion for wrestling and his friendliness towards others stood out. Unlike many other wrestlers, Dave was not afraid to cross cultures to learn wrestling techniques. Dave connected with the Russians in unimaginable ways, given the tension from the Cold War, through one com-

Coaches at Villanova and trains with Team Foxcatcher for 1988 Olympics

mon interest: a love of wrestling. Dave met the Russians with open arms. He studied their moves and techniques, and even learned to speak their language. He wanted to get better, but his likeability did more - it broke down barriers. “The Russian people ended up loving Dave,” Hart said. “They just cheered for him, and they booed the Russian referees toward the end of his career because they were rooting for him more than they were for their own Russian people.” Meanwhile, Mark had taken an assistant coaching job for the brand-new wrestling program at Villanova University in Pennsylvania. Prior to making the move to Pennsylvania. Mark competed in the 1986 world team trial. That is where he first met John Eleuthère du Pont, the man who donated the money to start the Villanova program.

Du POnt, the heir to the Du Pont family chemical company fortune, was said to be worth over $200 million. Born into wealth and privilege in 1938, du Pont grew up in Philadelphia. After finishing his education, du Pont tried to become a biathlete (an athlete that competes in both cross-country skiing and riflery), then tried

COACHINg

1986

Brothers coach together along with Chris Horpel at Stanford University

OLyMPICS

Coaches at USAF Academy

1989

Inducted into nationalwrestling Hall of Fame as Distinguished Member

1991

Tbilisi Champion

his hand at the pentathlon and finally landed on wrestling. Du Pont was different from most people, and was a diagnosed schizophrenic, according to The New York Times. Schizophrenia is a mental health disease, in which patients usually experience hallucinations and suffer paranoia. Some accounts describe du Pont as a lunatic and a family outcast, while others describe him as a peculiar but overall wellintentioned person. But one thing is certain: du Pont used his money to get what he wanted. “Du Pont was just a philanthropist,” Hart said. “He would donate money and think that he was in charge because he donated money.” “When I first met him, I thought, ‘There’s no way I’m going to coach at Villanova,’” Mark said. “Because this guy looked really screwed up. He looked like a nightmare; he had food caked on his teeth, dandruff caked on his hair, his leg was in a cast, and he was drunk. And he was just a mess.” With no other choice, Mark assisted at Villanova for two years. Although du Pont struck Mark as peculiar, Mark joined du Pont’s patroned wrestling team, Team Foxcatcher while at Villanova. Mark sacrificed

Wins UFC IX just four months after Dave is killed (only UFC appearance ever)

Coaches at BYU, first as an assistant, then as head coach

1995

1996

1996 Shot and killed by John E. du Pont

1998

2000

Inducted into nationalwrestling Hall of Fame as Distinguished Member

53


Cover Story his uneasy feeling about du Pont for the allinclusive training, as well as the room and board that Team Foxcatcher offered. “We were all desperately poor because of the Olympic rules,” Mark said. “They

Du pont mur D er Du pont murD mur D er Du pont murD mur D er Du PONT Mur MurDEr M urDE DE r DEr

photo courtesy of Paul Trautmann/Sports Illustrated

wouldn’t allow us to make money, so we were forced into this life of poverty. [This] allowed guys like du Pont to take advantage of us.” In a sport where fame was scarce and money scarcer, du Pont’s Team Foxacatcher”offered many wrestlers a chance to concentrate on wrestling while not worrying about finances. The large, state-of-the-art facility he built on his estate attracted wrestlers from all over. Mark left after two years, in 1989, to coach at Brigham Young University in Utah, where he would coach until 2000. At around

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“Paly Green. Olympic Gold. Fade to Black.” were good.

JanuarY 26, 1996 changed everything. It is difficult to imagine why du Pont shot and killed Dave on that cold Friday afternoon. Paul Trautmann, the team leader of a multijuristictional SWAT Team in Pennsylvania called the Tactical Response Team, was at du Pont’s estate that day. “Du Pont pulled into the driveway. Dave was loading the car or something; his wife [Nancy Schultz] was standing at the door,” Trautmann said. “And [du Pont] said, ‘Dave, come here,’ or something, and Dave walked over and du Pont pulled out a .44 mag and shot him several times. After he was even on the ground, he pumped a couple more rounds into him.” After shooting Dave, du Pont locked himself in his mansion for two days. The SWAT team shut off the house’s heating system and in the cold January weather, forcing du Pont to eventually emerge. Trautmann tackled du Pont to the ground and took him into custody after the two-day standoff. Different theories have emerged about

“It’s the Du Pont family – they’re known for having lots of money and gunpowder.” John E. du Pont is currently serving a 13-30 year sentence the same time, Dave joined Team Foxcatcher and became the head coach. In 1996, Dave had his eyes set on his next conquest: a second gold in the Atlanta Olympics. As the Centennial Olympics in Atlanta approached in 1996, Dave was still living with his wife and children on du Pont’s estate just outside of Philadelphia. While training with Team Foxcatcher, Dave worked closely with du Pont and the two were said to have gotten along well. Dave was ready. He was focused, and he was prepared. At age 36, Atlanta would have been Dave’s last realistic shot at reclaiming an Olympic gold, and the consensus in the wrestling community is that his chances

-Tactical response Team Leader Paul Trautmann

why the multi-millionaire took the wrestling great. Du Pont never offered any answers. “To this day, he’s never said why,” Trautmann said. “There are many theories, but there has never been an actual motive that he has been disclosed to anybody. He [du Pont] wanted to be a great everything, and he never really was. But it happened and there’s no getting around it. And to this day, no one knows why. And I don’t think anybody ever will truly know.” At the trial, du Pont’s lawyers claimed that he was insane and unable to realize what he was doing at the time, although he never denied the fact that he killed Dave. As of press time, Taras Wochok, the attorney who represents du Pont, refused to speak about du Pont’s personality due to on-

going issues with du Pont’s legal situation. Additionally, repeated attempts to contact the du Pont family were unanswered. In 1997, du Pont was found guilty but mentally ill and is serving to 13 to 30 years in prison. The 71-year-old du Pont was denied parole in 2008, reportedly for not showing remorse for the murder. “It’s the Du Pont family – they’re known for having lots of money and gunpowder,” Trautmann said. In a later statement, Trautmann said that when the Du Pont family first came to America, they were in the gunpowder industry. After going from Paly to the podium, Dave Schultz’s days of wrestling came to an abrupt halt, and younger brother Mark lost his teammate and brother.

tHe wOrD SPreaD quiCkLY throughout the wrestling community and the national media. The most common word used to describe the reaction: shock. People who knew him could not believe it. Dave was supposed to go to the 1996 Olympics. He was supposed to win a gold medal. He was supposed to make it to the next step. “When I heard [about the murder], it was a shock,” Brewer, Dave’s teammate at Paly, said. “It just seemed so crazy. I heard it just like everyone else - on TV early in the morning.” Confusion swept the wrestling community. Horpel, Dave’s longtime coach, was checking into a motel with his Stanford wrestling team when one of his wrestlers told him that Dave Schultz was on the news. At first, Horpel thought that Dave was being profiled for the upcoming Olympics. But it did not take long for him to realize what had happened. “I was absolutely shocked that he had been shot and killed,” Horpel said. “And as soon as they said that, I just burst into tears. It was like I had lost my best friend. Even though Dave and I were coach and athlete, we were like brothers, really. I had worked with him since he was in middle school and [had] seen him go from this pudgy little nothing to this unbelievable champion. And so, it absolutely destroyed me.” Dave’s death meant the loss of a competitor, a teammate, a husband, a father and a son. It also meant the loss of a big brother. “When I had to tell Mark that David was gone, that he was killed, Mark just... he was at Brigham Young, coaching and he just went crazy,” their father, Phil said. “I could just hear all these file cabinets going over, he was just throwing them over. He was bereft.”


photo courtesy of Sports Illustrated

SuCCeSS dave wins his 163-pound 1983 World Championship match against Taram Magomadov of the Soviet union bya score of 11-6.

The schul schulTT z legacy The schul schulTT z legacy The schul schulTT z legacy THE HE SCHu SCHuLTZ SCH uLTZ LTZ LEg LE LEgACy gAC ACy y

that he loved wrestling. And you don’t see a lot of kids like that, that sacrifice so much and are willing to do whatever it [takes] to succeed. That’s, of course, going to stick in your mind.” Although the initial shock of Dave’s death did pass, the loss has had a presence in Mark’s life ever since.

“I loved baseball, but not to the extent that he loved wrestling. And you don’t see a lot of kids like that, that sacrifice so much and are willing to do whatever it [takes] to succeed. -Tony Brewer “We didn’t have much stability in our lives because our parents were divorced and we were going back and forth,” Mark said. “Dave was really the only constant in my life. When I lost him... I have never gotten over it.” Mark lost more than his brother that day. In one moment his mentor, teammate and inspiration were also lost. “David’s loss was so powerful, especially on Mark that it’s taken Mark years to just overcome it,” Phil said. “And I’m not sure he’s completely overcome it. It’s just been very difficult for him. They were sort of just joined at the hip. They did a lot together – wrestled together, ate together, caroused together.” All this time spent together bonded the brothers in a unique way. Phil remembers how the brothers looked out for each other as their lives always seemed to intertwine. “They really cared about each other,” Phil said. “It was a wonderful bond. They just loved each other. Deeply.” The tragedy of Dave’s death has been particularly difficult to overcome for everyone who knew him because he had formed so many special relationships. But for Mark, the best way to get through it was to go back to wrestling. Mark, still at BYU when Dave was murdered, was training Dave Benito for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC IX). Just days before the fight, Mark broke Benito’s hand, decided to compete against former

photo by George Brown

tHe uSa wreStLinG teaM would go to the 1996 Atlanta Games without Dave. Despite Dave’s death, there were Schultzes at the Olympics. Nancy and their children, Alexander and Danielle, went to be with the people who loved Dave. The wrestling community, still navigating the aftershocks of Dave’s death, pulled together around the Schultz family. The American wrestling team came home with eight wrestling gold medals that year, only one more than the Soviets took. The USA wrestling team honored Dave’s memory by wearing black patches and T-shirts with Dave’s picture. Dave seemed to touch everyone who knew him. Some looked up to him for his medals, trophies and titles. Some admired his boyish love of wrestling. Some remembered his openness and sincerity. Everyone he met seems to remember him. “For some reason Dave’s death affected me more than almost anything I’ve ever had to go through,” Horpel said. “Dave added something that few gave to the sport of wrestling. To have loved him and lost him is one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to go through.” But even Brewer, the current wrestling coach at Paly who only wrestled with Dave for about a year, Dave left a long-lasting impression on him too. “He was that type of person you weren’t going to forget him,” Brewer said. “If you spent any amount of time with him, [you would know that] he was different from most kids. I loved baseball, but not to the extent

UFC finalist Gary “Big Daddy” Goodridge and won UFC IX (his only ever UFC appearance) – all just four months after Dave was killed. But Dave was not far from Mark, or anybody else’s, mind. “I don’t know if you ever really get past it but you do get through it, per diem,” Phil said. “And time does help.” A memorial service was held at the University of Pennsylvania and Dave’s body was cremated. After Dave’s death, Nancy formed the Dave Schultz Wrestling Club in honor of her husband. Today, every college in California represents this club as a part of USA Wrestling in a show of respect and remembrance for the great wrestler. On top of this, an annual tournament, the Dave Schultz Memorial International Championships, is held in Colorado Springs. But a tournament is not what Dave is be remembered for. Dave Schultz is remembered as a genuine student of wrestling. He is remembered as the big brother and mentor of UFC, World and Olympic champion Mark Schultz. He is remembered as a champion. The Schultz brothers were always looking ahead. This is precisely what made former Paly wrestlers Dave (‘78) and Mark (‘77) Schultz legends. In whatever they did, the Schultz brothers were always looking forward, preparing for the next pin, the next round, the next tournament and the next title. <<<

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Features

“Top to Bottom: Paly Jerseys”

(‘12 )

T op to Bot t om :

Kris Ho

glun d

Paly Jerseys

BY ALEX KERSHNER AND MARY ALBERTOLLE Wearing Paly green and white is a big deal, but how it is worn is equally as significant. When you put on your uniform you should get psyched to play. Good uniforms create attitude, bolster confidence and facilitate superiority, demonstrating why the quality and design of a jersey are essential to a team’s success. The Viking staff evaluated its favorite jerseys by hosting a class-wide poll to see which uniforms we thought best represent our entire athletic program. Every Paly uniform re received a letter grade. Criteria for our grading included the quality of the jerseys, players’ opinions, how often the uniforms are replaced and overall appearance.

Photo by Allie Shorin

Photo by Hana Kajimura

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Photo by Allie Shorin

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White Mizuno cleats, crisp white jerseys and pants, and grey “vest” jerseys match the softball team’s surge of success. Paly athletes envy them and opponents fear them. The softball uniforms grabbed first place with their fresh design and correlation to success. “The uniforms definitely make us feel like the accomplished team that we are,” shortstop Lauren Bucolo (‘10) said. “The white uniform looks really good, clean, snazzy. You get a good feeling when you put on a uniform and you know it looks good. Cleaner uniforms correspond to a more elite team.”

previous years, Paly girls have sauna GIRLS’ TENNIS Intered onto the tennis courts in a two-piece uniform, how-

ever, this year, the Paly girl’s tennis team purchased brand-spanking new white tennis dresses. “Tennis is the sport with the best clothes, you don’t have to look hideously unattractive when you play,” Gracie Dulik (‘10) said. “The other teams [in our league] looked really uncomfortable, so they were already at a disadvantage. A tennis uniform needs to be attractive, comfortable and be made out of a breathable material.” 0)

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The retro unis that won the state championship five years ago are nothing compared to the basketball players’ new swag. Personalized sides with “PA” in the lower-hand corner anchor the tight new look. “I like the jerseys, they’re unique, but they are thick and heavy, which is a problem,” point guard Brendon Rider (‘10) said. The team also owns warm-ups, which adds to the overall appeal. “I’m never intimidated by anybody, but I do feel a little bit more fresh with better jerseys,” shooting guard Davante Adams (‘11) said. “In our league, we have some of the best jerseys, the key is tight tops and baggy bottoms.”

re n

Photo by Allie Shorin

B

Photo by Allie Shorin

highlight of our jerseys is the white socks,” midfielder A- GIRLS’ SOCCER “The Emy Kelty (‘12) said. “The worst part is easily the shorts, they

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are just super awkward. Jerseys can be a confidence boost to our team when we look good.” “The white ones are sick,” midfielder Sophie Cain (‘10) said. “We look so intimidating in them, but the green ones, not so much. The shorts just get longer as the sizes increase and they are skinny on everyone. The socks and shorts are two different shades of green.”

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A- CHEERLEADING

Photo by Hana Kajimura

Rayo nna Adams (‘‘11)

“The green material is really stretchy so it is good for movement,” flier Tia Rabinovitz (‘13) said. “The design is pretty cute and it incorporates all of our colors: green, white, silver and black, but the part that says “Vikings” is stiff so it can be uncomfortable. I like any sort of glitter on our uniforms, pom-poms or make up, because it catches everyone’s eyes.” “Our uniform looks really professional at competitions because the simple black lines make our motions look sharp, but it is uncomfortable to wear to school cause it kind of suffocates us,” tumbler Sarah Miller (‘12) said.

Photo by Brandon Dukovic

“They are very old-school, so they are traditional and

A- FOOTBALL look pretty cool. But they are pretty big, that’s why

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“The newer [uniforms] are sleek and form fitting. The old ones were much thicker, which was nice during the winter,” midfielder Ethan Plant (‘10) said. “We have much better jerseys than other schools but that’s probably a function of the amount of support we get from our Boosters. A jersey is a jersey, so on the point of playing, it’s really not a factor. If you let something as trivial as a jersey af affect your play you don’t play to your own abilities.”

Photo by Allie Shorin

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Jakson Moses (‘11)

I hemmed mine,” junior defensive lineman Kevin Anderson (‘11) said. “They hold a lot of water in them so after a game you’ll have a ten pound jersey. A good football jersey is light enough so it feels as if you aren’t wearing anything and small enough so you can show off your guns.”

Photo by Brandon Dukovic

pros about the B+ BOYS’ CROSS-COUNTRY “The uniform are that

we look f****** amazing in them. The shorts are just short enough to let the thunder out of our thighs, and the jerseys are cut low enough that a lucky spectator could catch a quick glimpse of a nipple or two,” Josh Newby (‘10) said. “Ours are bright white, so we all look angelic. The con is that we are required to wear uniforms at all. I swear, wearing this uniform has shaved at least five seconds off my mile time because I’m so confident wearing it. Some chump in a red and black uniform’s morale will be crushed when I tear past him in my all-whites because he’ll know I beat him, and looked damn good doing it. A good cross-country uniform leaves very little to the imagination of my opponents. When it comes to color schemes, anything that isn’t green and white is a mistake.” Photo from Swim Outlet.com

“The pros are that our swim suits are small, so they’re comB GIRLS’ SWIMMING fortable and easier to wear because there’s not a lot of mate-

rial to get in the way,” Kaitlyn Tracy (‘10) said. “Another pro is that you get really tan. For racing suits, the con is that they’re really tight. It takes a really long time to put them on. When we all have our racing suits on for our final meet of the year, it’s really intimidating.”

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Features

“Top to Bottom: Paly Jerseys” look good and professional,” post Nehika Miglani B GIRLS’ BASKETBALL “They (’10) said. “They’re comfortable and classy. I think re-

Photo by Hana Kajimura

Photo by Malaika Drebin

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versible uniforms would be more convenient rather than two sets, but that also takes away from how good they look. Compared to Wilcox, that wears striped ones, we look classier. Paly has good colors and they’re not overdone. A good basketball uniform is sophisticated and makes a team look hard.”

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pros are that your fingers won’t get caught in any lose B WRESTLING: The clothing and its easier to hold on to,” Nate Velasquez (‘11)

said. “It’s much better then wrestling in shorts and a shirt. The main con is the fact that the people watching don’t understand the sport and think the uniforms are awkward. I personally love my singlet, so I feel pretty confident.” Photo by Malaika Drebin

B- VOLLEYBALL

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“This year’s jerseys were cool because they were breathable,” outside hitter Trina Ohms (‘11) said. “Our girls have curves and they fit better. The Mizuno [that we had this year] weren’t made to stretch and fit around a volleyball player’s body. “

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Photo by Brandon Dukovic

in lacrosse is called ‘flow’. The less baggy-ness of a C+ BOYS’ LACROSSE “Swag jersey equals better flow you have on the field,” attackman

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Photo by Hana Kajimura

C+ GIRLS’ LACROSSE

“Even though some teams’ look better, ours are so boring that other teams assume we’re bad and we just surprise attack them, then again we’re not putting on a fashion show, we’re getting dirty.” attackman Brianna Boyd (‘10) said. “I think [our uniforms] are very comfortable, a little form fitting, but cute. The skirts fly up a lot and usually our cleats get caught in them. “

C GOLF

Photo by Hana Kajimura

“The teams with nice jerseys are generally looked up upon, even if they aren’t good,” Michael Yuan (‘11) said. “It provides a sense of unity. Other than that, it only makes people uncomfortable. So really, all the golf jersey is for looks.” bad thing is it costs a lot of money,” D.J. Fotsch (‘11) said. “Most people also have a racing suit for more the important meets. It usually affects me in a mental aspect; wearing a racing suit is huge because knowing you are wearing the fastest suit makes you feel faster. A good suit nowadays is seamless and does a lot to help reduce drag.”

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C BOYS’ SWIMMING “The good thing about my suit is it reduces drag. The

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Photo by Malaika Drebin

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(‘09)

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‘10)

Zach Spain (‘11) said. “Growing your hair so a little bit ‘flows’ out the back is called ‘lettuce’.” “I don’t really like the look of lacrosse uniforms, especially the shorts, with all the holes in them, they look strange,” midfielder Kris Hoglund (‘12) said. “We will be rocking some swaggy helmets and gloves, so we will all be matching. Also, some kids might go with the colorful and swagged out sticks, shoes and even socks, in my case. In the end, it’s 10 percent lax and 90 percent flow.”


D+ BADMINTON

Photo by John Christopherson

“The shorts are a little unflattering because they’re an awkward length, so I just wear other shorts,” Jackie Koenig (‘12) said. “As for pros, it has a nice logo on the jersey and it’s a good material. Most other schools get two [sets] with their names on the back so they can keep it. In the end, I think that the uniform isn’t the thing we’re worried about when we play.”

Elizabeth Scott (‘10)

Photo by

Photo by Bob Drebin

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“Water polo suits are functional for games because the straps don’t rip or break easily and they stay on,” driver Shannon Scheel (‘12) said. “The pros are that they’re light and hard to rip off which is important when you’re playing,” two-meter Katie Maser (‘11) said. “Most of the time, the referees make you zip up the back which makes it harder to breathe.” Photo by John Christopherson

)

D GIRLS’ CROSS-COUNTRY “It’s super important for the jersey to

Malaika Drebin (‘10

D+ GIRLS’ WATERPOLO

be light weight and comfortable,” Gracie Cain (‘11) said. “The cons are that I always get anxious about putting my sweats on right after a race because I don’t like walking around in my spandex.”

‘ 10

)

“Cons would be that a lot of the uniforms are pretty old, especially the JV uniforms and warm-ups,” sprinter Andy Murray (‘10) said. “Also, the shorts are not as long as I’d like, but they kind of need to be that way if your going to be running. The shorts are not helping me out with the ladies. They may look stupid, but I don’t plan on wearing them for very long when I race anyway-- only as long as it takes me to finish.”

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D BOYS’ TRACK AND FIELD

Photo by

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“Varsity recently got new uniforms, but there are never enough for the whole team to have the same,” sprinter Emily Yeates (‘10) said. “This creates an unprofessional feel when the team goes to meets. The pros are, we don’t have to wear spandex, but that’s about it. The cons are that everyone just looks super awkward in them, especially when we have to tuck them in. Also, we don’t have matching warm-up gear so we look like a bunch of Mongrols.”

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Photo by John Christopherson

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old complaint that the Paly jerseys have not D- BOYS’ BASEBALL The changed in the past four years is opposite to the coach-

ing situation. “Our jerseys are definitely not as nice as they could be,” pitcher and shortstop Scott Witte (‘10) said. “The main problem is that the sleeves are really short. Although they accentuate the guns nicely, a few extra inches wouldn’t hurt.” The sleeves have been referred to as “muscle shirts” because they do not come down past each player’s upper bicep and, all the while, the stitching on most of them is fraying. “In the end, baseball uniforms have to have the tight pants to show off the natural curvature,” left outfielder Jeff Cohen (‘11) said.

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Features

“Top to Bottom: Paly Jerseys”

Photo by Hana Kajimura

Photo by Christine Chang

Sam Wo

ng

60

(‘09)

F BOYS’ TENNIS

The Paly boys line up on the tennis court wearing just a t-shirt and shorts, which is weird since they won league last year. “Last year’s were white shorts and a green Nike shirt,” Peter Tseng (‘10) said. “They were comfortable, but they didn’t say anything about Paly. There was another team that was in the Fresno tournament with the exact same jersey, so it’s pretty unoriginal. Some teams have warmups, which are pretty cool and make the team look like they have more skill than they probably do.”

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This past year, the boys’ water polo team did not have matching Speedos, therefore each member was responsible for finding his own suit (sometimes not even green), something that led to a lack of unity and team spirit. “There is less material for people to grab,” driver Ken Wattana (‘11) said. “They are intimidating. They are stylish and people know you are legit. You feel like a European on a beach and they accentuate Bobby Abbott’s barrel body. The cons: they’re not much protection from the cold. Another pro: they give you sick tans. Jersey Shore’s got nothing on us. We didn’t have team speedos because we are too sick for that so we looked like kids who raided the lost and found at a swim meet and all the teams that had matching speedos looked liked legit killer squads in comparison. Simpler is better.”

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First round CCS

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at Gunn (6:15)

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SCVAL finals (10:00)

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at Paly vs. Homestead (11:00)

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at Wilcox (7:45) CCS at Independence HS at Wilcox (6:15) CCS at independence HS (9:00) -(9:00 AM)

at Paly vs. Los Altos (7:00) at Paly vs. Los Altos at Homestead (7:45) (3:30) at Monta Vista (6:15) at Los Altos (3:30) at Paly Gunn Dual (5:30)

3

at Play vs. Milpitas (3:30) at Paly vs. Mountain View at Paly vs. Fremont (7:00) (3:30) at Wilcox (5:30 pm) at Paly vs. Lynbrook (7:00)

16

at Los Gatos (3:30) at Paly vs. Los Gatos (3:30) at Paly vs. Mntn View (7:00)

2

February 2010 Girls’ Soccer Wrestling Boys’ Basketball Girl’s Basketball Boys’ Soccer

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The Last Word

“The (Not So) Big League”

The Last Word

The (Not So) Big League by Michael Cullen

C

all me Mark Cuban; I got my own basketball franchise. I’m not talking NBA Live on my Gamecube, this is the real deal ,baby. Real players, real games and really good snacks that the moms bring after the game. So, what if my star player is a four-foot-seven second grader, OFFICIAL Michael Cullen’s head and I share an arena with four photoshopped onto the body of Eddie Jordan, the current coach other teams? It’s just another of the Philadelphia 76ers similarity we have to the Lakers and Clippers. You say we don’t have any sponsors? Reversible jerseys have swag. Plus, they are more environmentally friendly. We even voted on a team name together. I guarantee no NBA team has ever had “The Golden Toenails” as a potential label for its squad. Yeah, my franchise is a second grade YMCA basketball team. After the final whistle blows, and the juice boxes lay crumpled on the ground, the kids have learned about not only basketball, but also, whether they know it or not, they’ve also learned about life. The rules of basketball at the second grade level are a little different than the rules of the NBA. The hoop is lowered to eight feet, the court is smaller and there is no stealing the ball or press defense allowed. For a lot of the little tykes running around out there, it’s their first time playing basketball. For some, it’s their first experience with organized sports overall. When I was a kid playing Y-ball, I always questioned why we had to limit our play, specifically the restriction on stealing. I got over it, but now as a coach at the same level, I find myself struggling with the same situation. After some thought, I’ve realized that the basis for the limitations and rules that keep my lil’ guys from swooping the ball from the team on the other side of the court is all about sportsmanship. The age old saying, “As easy as taking candy from a baby” applies here. Often, kids have a difficult time controlling the ball, and it would be much too easy for an opponent to walk by and knock the ball loose with a hand slap. What the adage does not mention is the screaming temper tantrum that ensues after the baby realizes that he no longer has his lollipop. Back to basketball. Having a ball stolen from you when you are trying your hardest just to keep control of it would be crushing to a second grad-

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er. It’s hard to have fun when every time you get the ball, the kid who has the makings of a moustache steals your dribble, flies effortlessly down to the other basket and lays it up for two points. So, I keep it simple and remove the temptation, telling my boys to keep their hands up on defense. The kids deal with not being able to steal. They can get the ball back off of a rebound or the other team scoring a basket, but, when they are trying to score baskets of their own, there are more limitations. After a kid scores four baskets, the referee lets the coach know, because the max that the players are allowed to score is seven baskets in one game. The first time the ref held up four fingers and looked in my direction during a game, I was a little confused as to what to do. How do you tell a kid not to score any more baskets? When I signed up for coaching, I didn’t know I was going to have to contradict what I had been preaching to the kids, let alone the object of the game itself. I won’t lie; I’ve got a pretty deep roster, so there have been a few occasions where I have had to tap my star player on the shoulder and tell him to pass the ball before he shoots. One thing about the little guys, though—they are really good at following directions. When I say pass, they pass. When it’s evident that one team is clearly dominating, either because of raw talent or a superior game plan, the unwritten rule is to pass the ball. This occurred for my team during a game. So once I felt like we were pulling ahead, the phrasing I used with the team was, “Slow it down,” and I thought that we had a clear understanding until one of my players, on a fast break, literally tried to run… in slow motion. I realized that I had to use simpler commands to keep my team under control. Bottom line is, in my first game coaching, I learned a lot about youth sports. There is a fine line we coaches have to walk between fun and hurt feelings. At the youth level, it is more about learning the game and being a good sport than it is about competition. Sure, at any level you’re going to have a dad who’s screaming at his kid to shoot whenever he gets the ball. For the most part though, the parents sign their kids up to be introduced to the basics and make new friends. Y-ball is an introduction to the game of basketball for kids across America. For people like me, it is also an introduction to coaching. So while the kids learn, I learn. And despite the discrepancies between the rules in the NBA and the rules that my team plays by, there is one prominent similarity that I have noticed; just like the big leagues, 90 percent of the players on my team have a better jump shot than their coach. <<< Original Photo by Keith Allison


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Profile for The Viking Magazine

Viking Volume 3 Issue 4 - Paly Green. Olympic Gold. Fade to Black.  

Olympic champion wrestlers (and Paly alumni) are profiled in this issue's cover story.

Viking Volume 3 Issue 4 - Paly Green. Olympic Gold. Fade to Black.  

Olympic champion wrestlers (and Paly alumni) are profiled in this issue's cover story.

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