RM’s “FIRST” Robotics Team Briefs News

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RM’s “FIRST” Robotics Team Briefs News
7301 E. Brown Road, Mesa, AZ
Issue 4
Volume 20
February 8, 2008
“FIRST” Robotics Team
News RM’s
Engineering Club Designs and Builds Robot for Competition
Saturday Night
Bring your dancing
shoes! The annual Sadie’s
dance is coming up on
February 29, 2008. The
dance starts at 7 p.m. and
runs until 10 p.m. and
will be held on the tennis
courts. Tickets are $10 at
the bookstore and $15 at
the door. Get your tickets
Red Mountain’s literary
magazine, Mind’s Eye, has
extended their deadline
and will be accepting
submissions of art and
writing until February 15.
Congrats RM
U.S. News and World
Report named Red
Mountain among the
best high schools of
2008 in their nationwide
report. The Mesa Public
School District also had
the highest percentage
of schools recognized by
the magazine in Arizona.
Spirit of Unity
Red Mountain senior,
Anne Jaffe, was recently
selected as the Student
of the Year by the Spirit
of Unity Awards. Red
Mountain’s Model United
Nations also merited
in an award in their
Teaching Social Justice
By Joyce Tammany
Staff Writer
For the first time in its
twenty year history, Red Mountain High School has its own
robotics engineering team. At
the beginning of the school year,
students in Mr. Kellis’ engineering classes asked if they could
participate in the F.I.R.S.T. (For
Inspiration and Recognition
of Science and Technology)
Robotics Competition, an event
in which high school engineering students build robots to
first compete regionally, then
“There are about fifty teams
that are competing in the regional competition, and a certain
number of teams from each of
those regions then go to the national competition that will be in
April, where they will compete
against each other, and that’s in
Atlanta,” Mr. Kellis said.
Each team of students
receives the same kit of parts
and a set of requirements that
the robot must meet. For this
year’s challenge, the robot must
maneuver a large ball around an
obstacle course and be able to
News 1-3
opinion 4-5
focus 6-8
sports 11-12
[email protected]
Engineering students senior Christopher Heitland, sophomore Paul Muscat, senior Jonathan Fields,
and senior Skylar Bird test drive their robot to prepare for their competition in March.
the engineers.
Mr. Kellis describes his
feelings as “concerned, but not
nervous. I have a lot of faith in
Red Mountain students.”
“I hate to be a guinea pig,”
says Hudson, “but it looks like a
great experience.”
“It’s exciting, because
nobody else has done it before.
We don’t really know what to
expect,” said Linsy Mauler, also
a project manager and a senior.
The team overwhelmingly
agrees that the biggest obstacle
is the time limit. All robots must
be finished by February 19, in
time for the competition in early
“It’s very scary,” Mauler
said. “It’s a really big project
to do. I think it would be better if we had more time, but it
wouldn’t be so difficult then.”
Senior Sean Day adds, “It
might be hard, but it’s doable.”
For the next two weeks, the
team will be working long hours
and pulling all-nighters to meet
the deadline.
It might be stressful, but Day
welcomes the challenge. “I’m
not nervous,” he says. “I’m
more excited than anything,
because it sounds like so much
fun. You can’t top this.”
For more information on Red
Mountain’s Engineering classes,
visit http://www.mpsaz.org/
Relay for Life Runs with Eight Year Tradition
Service Learning
Mesa Public Schools
awarded Service Learning grants to teachers
based on their students’
projects, which included
fundraising, campus
beautification, outdoor
science labs, and food
drives. Red Mountain’s
Mr. Marcias was one of
the recipients of these
grants. Grants are available to all Mesa Public
Schools teachers for supplies and transportation.
function both autonomously and
“The challenge was designed
by NASA engineers, and an
MIT professor is involved in
this project. They did not make
it easy,” Mr. Kellis says.
To build a fully functioning
robot is a feat by itself, but these
students have only six weeks to
design and build.
“We don’t have time to
prepare, we have to do,” says
Mr. Kellis. “This is a project we
could easily spend a whole year
doing, and still not be complete.
We’d still have things we’d
want to do or learn.”
The team consists of students
with varying amounts of experience, but the same passion for
“Most of them are my
engineering students, so they’ve
already got a desire to do
engineering activities,” says Mr.
Keith Hudson, a senior and
one of the project managers,
says, “My career choice is going
to be something in engineering.
I know how to build things; I
love to take things apart. The
basic classes I’ve already gone
through with Mr. Kellis, so I
figured it would be just another
way to learn about engineering.”
Since Red Mountain’s team
is the first at the school, and
one of only two representing
Mesa, there are feelings of both
uncertainty and pride amongst
By Megan Thorson
Every year for the past eight
years, Red Mountain High
School has sponsored Relay for
Life. This year’s Relay for Life
is April 12 at Red Mountain
High School’s track. Relay for
Life raises money for cancer
research. Participants walk
around the track and do different
activities to promote cancer
“This year’s Relay for Life
will have tons of food, bands
and activities, like an air guitar
contest and various activities
to do while walking around the
track,” said senior Paige Eulate,
president of L-PAC (Lion Power
Against Cancer) .
Planning such a large and
important event takes a lot of
time because of the people that
participate and all the communication that is needed.
“Right after one Relay for
Life ends, the next year’s planning begins. They take about
a week off, and then they start
planning again,” said Mr. Donald, the advisor for L-PAC.
Students, parents and teachers from all over east Mesa
participate in the event and help
set everything up.
“Relay for Life not only
takes a lot of effort when it
comes to planning and setting
up the event, but it takes a lot of
dedication, too. We have about
40 of us working to plan this
cupid’s mailbox
Cupid strikes at Red
Mountain this V-Day. See
if there’s a message for
- page 7
year’s Relay for Life. We’re
lucky to have one of the biggest
committees in the state,” said
This year’s goal is to have
120 teams and 120 survivors
at the event. The club hopes
to raise $240,000 for cancer
“In previous years we have
not yet set the bar this high.
We’re confident that we’ll
achieve our goals with flying
colors,” said Eulate.
In order to meet their goal
the Relay for Life team is going
to need a lot of participants this
“Red Mountain students
participate in Relay for Life,
because everyone has been
touched by cancer whether they
realize it or not. Cancer doesn’t
discriminate. Red Mountain
needs to join the fight, because
you never know who this
disease will affect next,” said
For more information go to
This year Red Mountain hopes to raise $240,000 for cancer
research, a goal which has not been reached even by last year’s
Small Leaks Sink SHips
This experimental four piece has had
swimming musical success over the
past year. Meet the boys behind the
Relay for Life’s website www.
relayforlife.org or talk to an LPAC member.
- page 9
Red Mountain’s wrestling
team is pinning victory with a
dynamite season with a fresh
team and coach.
– page 11
Please recycle
February 8, 2008
Vote 2008
You Decide
Briefs Recognized Red Mountain Caucus
House Plant Sale
The AgriScience department is closing out
on over 2,000 house
plants to make room
for a spring crop. These
plants are selling for
50-75 percent off of
what they would sell at
a normal store. Plants
are available in the
bookstore and start at $1
and range to $10. These
include Devil’s Ivy, Banana plants, and Majesty
Palm trees. Contact Mr.
Sorensen in Room 717A
or Mr. Gless in Room 715
for information.
Celebrating 20
Years of Red
Red Mountain is planning its 20-year celebration! The event will include special events for
alumni and former employees. Graduates from
1989 to 2007 are invited
to contact Sean Mellor at
[email protected]
to participate in a video
presentation on campus
life. For more information, contact Mr. Lopez
at 480-472-8084.
By Eric Stoss
Staff Writer
At the last assembly
before the holiday break,
Dr. Slemmer received the
Mesa Professional Educators Outstanding Educational
Leadership Award. It is an
annual award that goes to one
elementary principal and one
secondary school principal.
The award is given based
on teacher evaluations of the
principal. Dr. Slemmer was
very flattered to have the
teachers think so highly of
“It was an incredible,
humbling experience,” Dr.
Slemmer said. “It made it
more meaningful to me,
because it’s coming from the
people I work with everyday,
not the south side organization [District Office].”
Dr. Slemmer views his
entire career as preparation to
receiving this award.
“There is no substitute for
experience,” said Dr. Slemmer.
Dr. Slemmer explained
that after so many years of
being in education, not much
surprises him.
“There’s always a surprise,
but for the most part you have
been there before,” said Dr.
Dr. Slemmer explained
it wouldn’t change anything
when it comes to leading his
administration and running
Red Mountain High School.
“An award like this
validates what you do,” Dr.
Slemmer said.
Olympic Style
Wrestling Clinc
Red Mountain’s Olympic
Style Wrestling Clinic will
be held Tuesdays and
Wednesdays from February 27 through May 7
at 6-6:45 p.m. for kids in
grades K-6 and 6:45-8
p.m. for kids in grades
7-12. Classes will be
taught by Mr. DiDomencio and Mr. Karantinos,
and will be held in the
Red Mountain High
School wrestling room.
The charge for the clinic
is $50. For more information or to register,
call Mr. DiDomencio at
Senior High
Writing Contest
Congratulations to
sophomore, Daniel Mariotti, of Red Mountain
who won first place in
the Senior High Writing
Senior Yearbook
Red Mountain’s
2007-2008 yearbook
is offering Senior Ads.
Senior Ads are a way for
parents, friends, or loved
ones to submit pictures
and a short paragraph
in honor of their seniors.
Prices, packages, and
other specifics can be
found at the school
website at http://www.
Photo by Rosalinda Albrecht
Dr. Slemmer displays his new Mesa Professional Educators
Outstanding Educational Leadership Award.
By Valerie Nunez
For the Democrats, Clinton came out on top
with 39 percent of the votes; Obama trailed
close behind with 36 percent. Edwards was
in a distant third with 16 percent. On the Republican side, McCain pulled through with 37
percent, and Romney had 32 percent. Huckabee lost his lead, recieving 11 percent, while
Guiliani once again did not make the top three.
Since then, many more states have held caucuses and primaries, but the way this election
season has gone thus far, any candidate could
come out on top.
Although the bid for the next president is
well under way, with primary/caucus season
having started in early January, neither the
Here’s how Red Mountain voted:
Democratic nor Republican parties have clear
front-runners. Making the race a bit more
intriguing is the fact that there is an entirely
unfamiliar array of runners, because President
Bush is not eligible to run again, and Vice
President Cheney has opted to not run.
While Red Mountain students saddled up
for a new semester in early January, hundreds
of miles away presidential hopefuls competed
in the Iowa Caucus, an event noteworthy for
being the first major electoral event in the
nominating process. The 2008 results of the
Iowa Caucus may help to outline how the
primary season may turn out. Barack Obama
beat out his fellow Democrats with 38 percent
of the votes, while Hillary
Clinton and John Edwards
each had about 29 percent.
On the Republican side,
many were surprised when
Mike Huckabee, a largely
unknown candidate, received
34 percent, with Mitt
Romney earning 25 percent,
and John McCain and Fred
Thompson each receiving
13 percent. Meanwhile
Red Mountain’s Republican
Rudolph Guiliani failed to
front runner is Senator John
make the top three.
McCain with a 20.06 percent
Closely following the
vote in his party.
Red Mountain chose Senator
Iowa Caucus was the New
Barack Obama as Democratic
Hampshire Primary, which
front runner with 38.58 percent
also failed to spotlight a
front runner for either party.
Dane Dukat Prepares For Future in Metal Work
By Cassie Hinckley
Some people enjoy working on cars, some with wood,
but for junior Dane Dukat, his
specialty is metal working.
Dukat is the first student in
high school, in Arizona, to
get certified with the National
Getting certified was not a
Institute of Metal Working
walk in the park. Dukat got
(NIMS). Dukat started workhis first certification in mateing with metal last August
rial and safety data in just a
after he got a job
couple of weeks
working at a ma- “I worked
working two and
chine shop called
a half hours a day.
a lot...
MSL Provisions.
He is also certi“Getting certi- Earning this
fied in milling
fied means I get
and is working on
certification getting certified in
to work with all
these machines
bench work and
felt good.”
and have the
-Dane Dukat (11) layout.
right knowledge
“I worked a
to operate them
lot,” said Dukat
correctly,” said Dukat. “Earn“In order for me to get my
ing this certification felt really certification, I had to make a
part using the machines and
Do you have a passion for writing?
Do you enjoy graphic design?
Do you want to be in the know?
Need an excuse to snoop?
Join Newslab!
Registration starts soon!
Don’t wait to sign up!
For more information, contact Ms. Saquella in Room 313
take a test online.”
Dukat also attends the East Valley
Institute of Technology (EVIT) for the
second half of the
school day and works
with the manual
machines they have
there in their metal
Like every other
job, metal working
takes some skill. One
needs to be coordinated enough to
operate the machines,
but the main skill
needed to work with
metal according to
Dukat is math.
“You need to know
how to do math
Photo by Cassie Hinckley
right when you are
Junior Dane Dukat proudly shows off
working with the
his hard-earned certificate.
machines, or you
could mess up easily.
am certified to work with the
When you get the hang of it
machines, and that will give
though, it’s not that hard.”
me a greater chance of getting
Earning this certification
the job.”
will help out in the future.
Congratulations again to
Dukat plans on being a manuDane Dukat for earning his
facturing engineer, but for
certification with the National
now it will help him get jobs
Institute of Metal Working.
in machine shops.
“A lot of employers are
looking for it now,” said
Dukat. “It will help me,
because they will see that I
February 8, 2008
FFA on Top of Food Chain
AIMS Survival Kit
In Pet Food Fundraiser 2008 Guidelines to Remember
By Valerie Nunez
With a Pet Food and Supply Drive in December, FFA
Week February 11 to 16, and
various competitions, Red
Mountain’s AgriScience and
BioTechnology Department
has been busy.
“Our competitions are
called Career Development
Events,” said agricultural
teacher Mr. Sorenson. “It’s
a district competition where
all the teams in the district
compete in different areas of
agriculture. There are teams
of about four. The different
teams consist of stuff like
agronomy, forestry, nursery
and landscape management.
Students interested in these
kinds of careers learn all
about the areas, and they get
to go compete with students
from other schools.”
This year, Red Mountain’s FFA is hoping to earn
another trip to the national
competition, as well as win
the National Chapter Award,
an award signifying that Red
Mountain’s FFA is one of the
top chapters in the nation.
Mr. Sorenson and his students
have been working hard.
“I had students
working hard
to put the
whole thing
together, and
it ended up
being really
-Mr. Sorenson
“Every day at lunch I have
about two teams in here practicing, which is eight to ten
students,” said Mr. Sorenson.
“These students are giving up
their lunches to come in and
Not only are these students
working on upcoming
events, but they recently
wrapped up a pet food
and supply drive.
“The drive ran from
after Thanksgiving Break
until Winter Break,” said
Mr. Sorenson. “I had
students working hard
to put the whole thing
together, and it ended up
being really successful.
We took the supplies to
San Philipe Dog Rescue,
and they help dogs that
have been abandoned
in Mexico find good
Although Mr. Sorenson and his students have
been working hard to
organize so many events,
all have been very well
put-together and successful. For more information on the AgriScience
and BioTechnology
Department, go to www.
Seniors Johnna Eilers and Lacey O’Meara helped with FFA’s Pet
Food Drive at the end of last semester.
By Cassie Hinckley
The Red Mountain High
School Academic Decathlon
team and Brainstorm Team
are on the prowl this year.
Academic Decathlon is a team
competition where students
match their intellects with
students from other schools.
Students are tested in ten
categories: Art, Economics,
Essay, Interview, Language
and Literature, Mathematics, Music, Science, Social
Science, and Speech. Each
high school enters a team of
nine students: 3 "A" or Honor
students, 3 "B" or Scholastic
students, and 3 "C" or Varsity
students. Like the decathlon
athletic contest, the Academic
Decathlon does not permit
Arizona’s Instrument to Measure Standards,
or AIMS, is important to every student graduating from an Arizona high school. It has three
subjects, reading, writing and mathematics,
that every student in high school has to pass to
“Students are taking the writing test
February 26, the reading test is the next day,
February 27, and lastly the mathematics test is
April 8,” said Ms. Manning-Hale, counselor in
charge of AIMS.
Seniors or juniors who still need to pass the
AIMS this year should see Ms. Manning-Hale
in the counseling office.
“The students will be assigned a Red Moun-
tain teacher or tutor, pick-up a customized or
general study guide, and/or receive a list of
Arizona State Approved Providers,” said Ms.
Juniors or seniors wanting to take the AIMS
to exceed, can also come to see Ms. ManningHale.
“The students who are wanting to take
the AIMS to exceed should have signed up in
the counseling office in December,” said Ms.
How to AIM High:
1. Bring your school ID or a photo ID.
2. Bring three to four number two pencils for the day of the test. Most mechanical
pencils are number two, but check before bringing it.
3. Dress in layers, or bring a sweater or sweatshirt; it may be cold and it might take your
concentration off the test.
4. Eat a good breakfast; skipping breakfast may cause you to think about hunger
instead of your answers.
5. Get a good night’s sleep.
6. Remember your room assignments that will be given in mid-February.
7. Make arrangements with employers about the AIMS testing schedule posted in February. You should reschedule any appointments for those days, because students will NOT
be let out early for work or appointments.
8. Try to relax and do your best. View the test as an opportunity to show what you
know and are able to do.
9. Listen to directions as the teacher explains them. Ask about any directions you do
not understand.
10. Read all the directions carefully.
11. Look for key words that will help you identify what the question is asking you to do.
12. Take your time and work at your own pace. The AIMS is not a timed test.
13. Move on to the next item if you are stuck. Make sure you skip that space on the
bubble sheet, and remember to return to it later.
14. Make educated guesses if you are unsure of an answer. First eliminate the choices
that are obviously incorrect, then logically select from the remaining choices.
15. Take the time to review answers when you are finished. Re-read your written
responses to check that they are clear.
16. Make a plan. Make a list of the most important topics to be covered and use that
as a guide when you study. Circle items that you know will require extra time. Be sure to
plan extra time to study the most challenging topics.
17. Manage your time. Scan through the test quickly before starting. Answering the
easy questions first can be a time saver and a confidence builder. Plus, it saves more time
in the end for you to focus on the hard questions.
18. When you complete the last item on the test, remember that you’re not done yet.
First, check the clock and go back to review your answers, making sure that you didn’t
make any careless mistakes (such as putting the right answer in the wrong place or skipping a question). Spend the last remaining minutes going over the hardest problems.
For AIMS study guides, sample tests, students guides or high school tutoring guides go
to www.ade.govaz.gov.
Decimates the Competition
participants to specialize but
encourages academic versatility by requiring students to
prepare for all ten events. The
Academic Decathlon stresses
educational opportunity and
academic excellence. Gold,
Silver and Bronze medals
are awarded for individual
events and total scores. Winning teams advance through
the local, regional, and state
levels of competition. The
state champions compete at
the national finals.
The competition team (a
class taught by Mr. Kaufman)
consists of nine intelligent
members: senior Jakob
Hansen, senior Nick Cates,
junior Scott Johnson, senior
Makenzie McFadden, junior
Chris Hoyt, senior Lauren
Worth, senior Andrew Kurth
and junior Amanda Melcher.
“This is a fabulous group
of kids to work with,” said
Mr. Kaufman.
Academic Decathlon
competes all year long. During the summer, the team
prepared themselves for this
year’s competitions. This
year the main topic is the
Civil War. They are focusing
on the historical points such
as the music, art, literature,
science (diseases and treatments), math, essay, speech/
interview, and economics.
“Academic Decathlon
exposes you to the multiple
fields of academia,” Hoyt
The students really enjoy
being in Academic Decathlon,
although it requires some
intense preparation.
“When I study, my eyes
bleed,” said Kurth.
Being in the Academic
Decathlon will help out the
students in the future.
“Academic Decathlon is
really challenging but really
rewarding,” said McFadden.
“We are pretty much nerds.”
Along with earning an
awesome education during
the school day, Academic Decathlon members work hard
studying whenever they have
a free moment.
“Academic Decathlon
is the greatest thing in the
world,” said Hoyt. “You
don’t get to be bored anymore. We study all the time.
With Academic Decathlon
you get this huge amount of
independence and get to direct
your own learning. It is very
The Academic Decathlon
team has two more competitions, the Regional
February 1-2,
at Dobson High
School and Finals
on March 7-8 at
Mountain Point
High School.
“The team
has an excellent chance in
winning,” said
Kaufman. “They
are really hard
working and dediPHOTO BY VALERIE NUNEZ
The Academic Decathalon team, from left to right, top to bottom, consists of
junior Amanda Melcher, senior Andrew Kurth, senior Scott Johnson, junior
From the AcaNick Cates, junior Chris Hoyt, senior Makenzie McFadden, senior Jakob
demic Decathlon
Hansen, and senior Lauren Worth.
team, there are
a couple individuals that
make up Red Mountain’s
Brainstorm Team. The team
members are seniors Kurth,
McFadden, and Hansen. The
team participates in competitions on general information
between other high schools
around the valley.
“Brainstorm is a really
unique, exciting, fast paced
experience,” said McFadden.
The motto the team keeps
telling themselves is “be one
with the buzzer.”
The team has won its first
two rounds and come in second place. They are currently
waiting to see when they can
compete in semi-finals. You
can watch the Red Mountain
Brainstorm Team compete
in their last competition on
Cox Channel 7, Wednesday
February 13, at 6:30 p.m. It
will also run two more times
the following Friday and
Saturday. Stay tuned to find
out how the Brainstorm Team
holds up to the competition.
February 8, 2008
The Roar
Bring Lily Home!
A group of friends and their quest to bring their friend back to the United States
By Valerie Nunez
Sophomore Liliane Gaytan
is a straight “A” student, plays
the piccolo, and has dreams
of one day attending Notre
Dame University. She loves
helping others and participating in community service
Gaytan is described by
friend and fellow sophomore
Chloe Benson as “one of
those rare people who is nice
to everyone, whether they’re
nice back or not.”
Unfortunately, Gaytan no
longer attends Red Mountain.
In fact, she is no longer a
resident of Arizona, or even
the United States. On December 10, 2007, Gaytan and
her family went to Nogales,
Mexico to renew their visas,
unaware that they would not
be able to return.
Originally from Mexico,
Gaytan’s family legally
entered the United States, her
dad with an H1B visa and her
family with supplementary
H2 visas. Because Gaytan’s
father did not have the conditions necessary to apply for a
green card, the family stayed
in the United States with their
working visas for five years,
simply renewing them when
“The most recent visas
lasted from June 2, 2006
to June 1, 2007. In early
May, 2007, Liliane’s dad, an
engineer, was offered a new
job from a different company. For several reasons, the
opening of the position was
delayed from June to September,” said Benson, quoting an
e-mail from Gaytan. “When
the visa application process
began, the family was forced
to wait a ridiculously long
amount of time for the company to supply them with the
correct paperwork.”
Throughout this time
period, the Gaytan family had
two options: apply for tourist
visas, enabling them to stay
in the United States, or go to
Mexico for six months, giving
up certain liberties, including a better education for the
children. Understandably, the
Gaytan family chose to stay.
In an e-mail, Gaytan said,
“During our interview at the
U.S. Consulate in Nogales,
Mexico, the immigration
officer became upset by the
fact that we had remained in
the country through this pe-
riod between work
visas. She claimed
that the coverage of
our visas were only
to go shopping
across the border.
My dad was told he
was violating the
good intentions of
both visas.
“He tried to
explain that we
were in there with
all this paperwork,
because we wanted
to do everything
legally. By this
time, she did not
want to hear any
quested to see our
Sophomores Erin Briney, Chloe Benson, and Chelsey Pavey are the
visas, and she cut
them. Her supervi- founders of Bring Lily Home, an organization dedicated to helping Liliane
Gaytan and her family come back to the United States.
sor informed us
that we were going
Benson, along with sophofair, but I highly doubt it is
to be punished for the next
mores Erin Briney, Chelsey
an isolated case. This family
five years. During this time
Pavey, and Laura Kulas, has
is being punished because of
period, we were told, we are
started an organization called
some belated paperwork. It’s
not going to get any type of
“Bring Lily Home.” The goal
clear that there is a flaw in
is to appeal to government ofthe immigration system when
The fact that the Gaytan
ficials not only in Arizona, but a simple change of a job can
family is being punished for
Washington D.C. as well, and
result in an entire family betrying to legally better their
hopefully get the Gaytan’s
ing kicked out of the country.
lives is nothing short of infucase reevaluated. To achieve
Students with opinions about
riating. It was only for a brief
this, they are asking anyone
this ordeal can make their
period of time that they stayed who is willing to help to write voices heard by contacting
in the country on tourist visas, letters to be sent to CongressBring Lily Home at bringwhile they waited until the
man Flake and John McCain,
[email protected] or by
time came to renew their
among others.
visiting their website at www.
working visas. However,
Not only is the Gaytan’s
there is hope.
situation completely un-
Is Txting Bad 4 U?
The Truth About The Dangers of Texting While Driving
By Sarah Allmandinger
Staff Writer
“Cell phones play an
integral role in our society.
However, the convenience
they offer must be judged
against the hazards they
pose,” said the Insurance
Information Institute in an article posted on their website.
In the United States, thirtyfive percent of all accidents
are due to inattention, and
75 percent of all rear-end accidents are due to inattention.
The question is how many of
these accidents are due to cell
phone usage?
“If I hadn’t been talking on the phone, I
wouldn’t have been
speeding, my hands
wouldn’t have been
occupied. Obviously, I could have
turned a lot better. I
would have thought
better about breaking and would have
been more focused
on where I was
driving,” said Red
Mountain senior Kacee Crandall about
her car accident.
Americans are
preoccupied with their conversations, whether it is talking to someone on the line or
texting. Two main problems
of talking while driving are
dialing a number and taking
your eyes off the road, and
while having a conversation
it’s possible to become so
engulfed with what the other
person is saying that paying
attention to the road becomes
secondary. When this happens, it’s proven that a driver
drives an average of two
miles an hour slower. Drivers
have a tendency to disregard
their surroundings such as
their speed.
“People think that they can
talk on the phone and drive at
the same time but try watching a movie and talking at the
same time. How much of the
movie do people remember?”
said senior Larelle Cofer.
A survey of dangerous
driver behavior was released
“If I hadn’t been
talking on the
phone, I wouldn’t
have been speeding, my hands
wouldn’t have
been occupied.”
-Kacee Crandall (12)
in January 2007 by Nationwide Mutual Insurance
Company. Of 1,200 drivers surveyed found that 73
percent talk while driving
with a majority being young
drivers. Nineteen percent of
motorist text while driving.
Another survey in August
2006 showed that teens considered texting while driving
to be their biggest distraction
on the road. Of the survey, 37
percent said that texting was
extremely distracting, and 19
percent said that just having
friends in the car was distraction enough.
Motorists that use cell
phones while driving have
a four times higher chance
of getting into a car accident. Cell phone usage has
been considered to be just as
dangerous as drunk driving,
even if the device is a hands
free model.
“I’m not surprised because
people that text and drive
would be using their knees to
drive and that’s just as dangerous as drunk driving,” said
senior Stacey Blattel.
“Researchers at the
University of Utah found
that motorists are 18 percent
slower in breaking and took
17 percent longer to regain
their speed,” said the Insurance Information Institute
in an article posted on their
Fifty four percent of Arizona residents have favored banning talking while driving; 62
percent have favored banning
Fifty-four percent of Arizona residents have favored
banning talking on the phone while driving.
texting while driving; and 87
percent favored banning cell
phone usage all together.
As a result, Phoenix has
recently passed a bill to ticket
drivers for texting while driving.
A recent study found that
24 percent of Red Mountain
students surveyed said they
text while driving, and 48
percent said they talk on their
phones while driving.
Obviously, the distractions
are slowing traffic and causing an increase in accidents,
and students need to take a
stand about this issue.
“Turn the phone off before
you start the car, that’s the
best advice,” said driver’s
education teacher, Coach
As a student and a driver,
I’ve had personal experience
with actually texting and
talking on the phone while
driving. Texting is my biggest distraction on the road.
I think that Arizona police
should take action against
texting and talking by a ticket
first and a then, if this pattern
continues, take more forceful
So to all you Red Mountain yakkers and texters: Be
safe on the road and leave the
cell phones off until you are
no longer driving.
Dear Editor,
What Are the Odds?
My daughter called a
while back with a story
that Red Mountain teachers and students, past and
present, will enjoy. She
works for Desert School
Federal Credit Union. She
was asked to serve on a
committee because of her
good writing skills. There
were four chosen for this
committee. Their task was
to clean up all correspondence that was being sent
to customers. The "Big
Wigs" were seeing correspondence from many
departments that was
sloppy and full of errors.
This committee's job was
to clean up all correspondence sent to customers
making it all standard and
correct. They met once a
week for most of last year.
On the last day my
daughter, Robin, and one
of the other members
were debating a point of
punctuation when my
daughter said, "I know
Mr. Dant would not like
a sentence starting with
'because."' The male
member said, "Mr. Dant?
I had Mr. Dant at Westwood, too." They found
this coincidental. The
younger girl said, "I went
to Red Mountain, but I
had a Mr. Dant, too.” They
all found this amazing.
At this point Sarah
McLellen and Brian
Gregory started reminiscing discovering that they
both had taken the same
class from him, so Sarah
and Brian both starting
reciting The prologue
from Canterbury Tales.
This was something they
both remembered from
Mr. Dant's class. They also
brought up his habit of
wearing his belt buckle
sideways. He used this
tactic to catch their attention. Then, when the
students were convinced
that this man was too
difficult, too smart, and
too scary, someone would
have the nerve to ask him
why he wore his belt like
that, and he would simply
answer, "Chicks dig it."
Needless to say, he was a
favorite from that point
Finally, the fourth
member spoke up. "What
are the odds on a committee picked from 1500
members that all three of
you would have the same
English teacher? That is
unbelievable! He must be
a remarkable teacher."
Well said!
Mrs. Abel
RM English Teacher
Red Mountain High
School is celebrating its
20th anniversary this year.
February 8, 2008
February 8, 2008
The Roar
Coping With the Loss of a Loved One
A Personal Examination of Grief
By Megan Thorson
Staff Writer
This year Red Mountain’s counselors have
counseled about 10 percent
of the students that attend
Red Mountain High School
for a loss of a loved one, or
the process of grieving.
On December 27, 2006,
my brother, Matthew
Aaron Thorson, died from
respiratory failure. We
never found out what
disease took over his lungs
or the cause of his death.
Throughout 2007, my family and I have gone through
everything imaginable,
from celebrating the day he
was born to remembering
the day he passed away
and other holidays without
him. There is no right
or wrong way to grieve
the loss of a loved one,
whether it’s a close friend
or a family member, but
everyone in their lifetime
will have to experience it
When you lose a family
member, or a friend, you
quickly learn who and
what is really important
in life. Before my brother
passed away, my family wasn’t very close. We
would spend time together
on major holidays, but
otherwise we wouldn’t
with a loss is to talk with
good and bad times I had
ing harder when the
“I forgot certain
see each other. Once Matt
the people who are going
change is over.
with my brother.
passed away, we all realthrough the same situation
Cry when you’re sad,
Putting off your
memories over time,
ized how short life is, and
you are and are grieving
and cry when you just feel
feelings and not letting
because Matt wasn’t
we now spend as much
the loss. Talking to my
like crying. Tears can help
yourself feel your
time together as possible.
brother’s girlfriend and his
you. You have a reason to,
feelings is one of the
there to remind me
One way to cope with
best friend’s family helped
and people will understand
worse things you can
a loss is through counselme, and I also helped them.
when they find out your
do. Feelings build up of them, but I can
ing. My mom had put me
We grieved together, and
situation. Cry when you
over time and the more always return to my
in counseling before my
we all soon became one big want, and be happy when
you hold things in and
brother’s death to deal with
you feel like it. There’s
don’t express your feel- journal and rememmy parent’s divorce. CounWriting down your feelnothing wrong with being
ings, the more stressed
ber the good and
seling helped me express
ings is also a good way to
happy either. It’s important and overwhelmed you
my feelings,
will feel.
bad times I had with
cope with
my brother’s
yourself busy is im- my brother.”
death and
portant to do when
-Megan Thorson (10)
realize that
you experience the
other people
loss of a loved one.
Losing my brother was
have been in
Spending time with your
most difficult thing my
my situation
closest friends is what
and I have ever gone
too. Getting
you need right now, and
Most of us have
in a grief
it will keep your mind
group or
off of your loss. Go
in counselsome kind
shopping or to a movie
ing. We help each other out
of counselwith your friends, some
ing will help
place where there isn’t a when we need it and watch
out for each other. We deal
you, and no
lot of talking and there
with the pain and suffering
one has to
is something to keep
as it comes. Grieving is a
know about it
busy, that way there is
hard thing to deal with and
if you don’t
no way your loved one
it’s not fair when you have
want them to.
will come up in converPHOTO BY KATIE THORSON
to do it. However there are
Matthew and Megan Thorson returning from a long weekend at a church camp.
ways to get help and people
seling has
A lot of people don’t
out there to help you; you
helped me
know what to say to
just have to be willing and
to see that there are people
cope with a loss. I wrote
to let your feelings out,
someone who has just
ready to open up. For more
who are feeling just as lost
my feelings down in a note- and let people know how
lost a family member or
information call the Youth
and confused as I am. We
book, even if it didn’t make you feel. People will want
someone close to them.
Crisis Hotline at 1-800sense at the time. Little
It’s something that people
maybe not fully understand
to help you in this time of
448-4663, or contact the
how losing our loved one
scribbles, quotes, memories need. There are people out
know they don’t want to
Red Mountain High School
is for each of us but we
and how I felt at that time.
there that you can go to to
talk about, but sometimes
still are able to be there
Years from now, I can read
express your feelings.
it helps to talk to someone
for each other. It helps
what I wrote and how I
Don’t make any major
who doesn’t know. Taking
to have a safe place to go
felt at that time. I forgot
care of yourself is impordecisions during your time
and talk about the one you
certain memories over time, of grieving. Major changes tant during your time of
lost without being judged,”
because Matt wasn’t there
can make you frustrated
grieving. Now more than
said junior Kayleen Liley,
to remind me of them, but
and can make you put off
ever, you need to take care
Matt’s girlfriend.
I can always return to my
the grieving process, which
of your body. Get enough
Another way to cope
journal and remember the
sleep at night, eat right and
will just make griev-
Get Amped Up For Advanced Guitar
By Sam Whitaker
Staff Writer
Are you somebody who
is interested in pursuing
the study of the guitar? Advanced Guitar class at Red
Mountain High, the only
advanced guitar class in the
Phoenix Metropolitan area,
will help you become better and more rounded as a
guitarist and a musician.
“Mr. Davenport, before
he retired, set up the Advanced Guitar class,” said
Mr. Filsinger, the current
Advanced Guitar teacher.
“He established a strong
program that is continually
expanding. Before this
was set up, kids would take
Beginning Guitar and then
sometimes Intermediate,
and that was it. Red Mountain is pretty innovative,
Mr. Berkseth teaches the
Beginning and Intermediate Guitar classes, so
there’s a stream of teachers.
This is a great class and a
great program that hasn’t
stopped growing,” said Mr.
Mr. Filsinger has high
standards for students who
are interested in taking the
“I expect them to know
how to think, to stretch, to
take risks and to try everything,” said Mr. Filsinger.
Students who take
Advanced Guitar will
walk away from his class
with more knowledge than
“They will walk away
knowing that the world of
music is much bigger than
they thought,” said Mr.
There are some prerequisite classes before getting
into Advanced Guitar.
“Students have to take
Beginning and Intermedi-
ate Guitar before trying out
for Advanced Guitar, or
they have to have had taken
private lessons,” said Mr.
For qualified students
who want to join his class,
Mr. Filsinger has some
“Get ready to have a
great time. Get ready to
grow, and to become more
than you think you are,”
said Mr. Filsinger.
The number of years
that the Advanced Guitar
students have been playing
varies among the students.
Some, like senior Cory
West, have been playing for
a long time.
“I’ve been playing the
guitar since I was born,”
said West.
Other students just
got started playing guitar
within the past few years.
“I’ve been playing for
two years,” said senior
Matt Briggs.
Even students who think
they know everything about
the guitar are surprised at
what they learn.
“The most important
won awards every year at
industry, and it’s, overall, a
thing I’ve learned is that no
the festival. The awards
great experience.”
matter what you think, you
include guitar equipment
For more information
don’t know everything,”
for the class.
on Advanced Guitar visit:
said junior Nathan Smith.
“They had to be the best
On Wednesday, April
ensemble, the best soloists,
16, the Advanced Guitar
and overall best in show,”
For more information on
class will be attending
said Filsinger. “Everybody
Fender Festival in ScottsFender Festival located in
gets something out of Fend- dale visit www.fender.com.
Scottsdale for the third year er Festival, they get to hang
in a row. Just like how
out with pros, people with
connections to the music
the Band, Orchestra, and
Choirs have their
festivals, so too
does the Advanced
Guitar class. It is a
guitar-only festival,
but it is open to the
public, and both
professional guitarists and judges will
be attending.
“Fender Festival is basically a
bunch of schools’
guitar classes competing. They’re
usually younger
than us because
we’re the only
advanced group,”
said Smith.
Senior Matt Briggs practices his guitar during Advanced Guitar
The Advanced
Guitar class has
February 8, 2008
February 8, 2008
Baby, It’s Cold
Local Band, Small Leaks Sink Ships,
February 8, 2008
The Roar
Floats to Success on Local and National Levels
By Joyce Tammany
Staff Writer
Arizona indie darlings, Small Leaks
Sink Ships, have a history as uneasy as
their name suggests. Judd Hancock,
London VanRooy, and Jim Mandel, Jr.
originally performed together as Beyond
Analog and released two albums. Poised
to make a third record, Beyond Analog
disbanded, but reformed in 2006 under a
new moniker.
Bassist Mandel believes fate brought
them back together.
“We all played in different bands and
solo projects,” he says, “[but] this is definitely the first time that we feel comfortable in a band.”
With a completely revamped sound
to go with their new name, Small Leaks
spent a few months writing and rehearsing
before heading into the studio, using the
time originally allotted to record Beyond
Analog’s third release. Until the World Is
Happy, Wake Up You Sleepyhead Sun, the
band’s debut record, is a mélange of sounds
influenced by the Mars Volta, Modest
Mouse, and Minus The Bear.
Mandel believes that their sound’s
biggest influences are the band members
themselves. “We all listen to such vastly
different styles of music,” Mandel says.
“We look to each other when writing. Judd
[vocals/guitar/piano] and London [vocals/
drums] are amazing storytellers.”
Named one of the “Best Underground Bands That Won’t Stay Underground for Long” by Alternative Press Magazine, Small
Leaks Sink Ships’ unique style appears be paying off for the energetic four piece.
A month after the album’s release in
February 2007, the band signed with No
Sleep Records.
The album has since gained acclaim
from the likes of absolutepunk.net, Spin.
com, and Alternative Press magazine,
which claimed Small Leaks to be one of
the “Best Underground Bands That Won’t
Stay Underground for Long.”
“I would say each song has its own
message or feeling to it,” Mandel says of
the record. “But, in all honesty, if you play
the record backwards, it says ‘kids, don’t
do drugs.’”
The band later added Mike Mukai to
their lineup and began voraciously playing
shows with local favorite, the Stiletto Formal, as well as other indie acts from across
the country.
As for the future, Mandel says, “We just
want to survive on our music. We would
love to just be alone to write and tour. I
Concert Calendar: February/March
February 8
February 10
February 12
Febrary 17
February 19
February 19
February 26
March 2
March 3
March 12
March 16
March 17
Foxy Shazam, Peachcake The One Place, Phoenix,
6:15 p.m
Haste the Day, Scary Kids The Clubhouse, Tempe,
Scaring Kids
6:00 p.m.
The Editors
Marquee Theater, Tempe,
6:30 p.m.
Aiden, Madina Lake
Rialto Theare, Tuscon,
6:30 p.m.
Emery, Mayday Parade
Marquee Theater, Tempe,
6:00 p.m.
Cobra Starship
The Clubhouse, Tempe,
6:00 p.m.
Bone Thugs N Harmony Rialto Theatre, Tuscon,
7:00 p.m.
Foo Fighters
Glendale Arena,
Glendale, 7:30 p.m.
Dropkick Murphys
Marquee Theater, Tempe,
6:30 p.m.
Silverstein, Devil Wears
Marquee Theater, Tempe,
6:30 p.m.
Flogging Molly
Marquee Theater, Tempe,
5:00 p.m.
Matchbox Twenty
Cricket Pavilion, Phoenix,
7:00 p.m.
don’t think any of us care about being rich
and famous; we all really very much enjoy
writing music.”
With that kind of attitude and the successes the band has seen so far, this is one
local band that Arizona natives should see
in small clubs while they still can.
For more information on the band,
check out www.myspace.com/smallleakssinkships.
How Much
$14 in advance
$18 at the door
$17 at the door
$16 at the door
$12 at the door
$35 at the door
$25 at the door
$25 at the door
February 8, 2008
The Reel Reviews The Armchair
Book Reviews
By Eric Stoss
After seeing all the movies out this month, I came to the decision that
these three begged for mention, due either to being excellent, or complete
drivel. On a 1-10 rating scale, see what your favorite movie got.
I Am Legend
This is the story of Robert Neville (Will
Smith), a military scientist and his experiences after an infectious virus wipes the world
clean of all society and all people, all but the
dark seekers that is. Will Smith’s general style
of action/comedy is thrown off with this movie. It is mostly about his struggle to survive in
his head rather than to survive in the city. It
does hold moments that would make some
laugh, but looking deeper into the character,
people realize they shouldn’t be laughing.
The movie embodies intense feeling like a
horror movie for some parts, but half way
through the movie it takes a huge jump
to an action movie, all the while remaining extremely melancholy. Will Smith pulls
off the story almost completely alone, give
for an occasional flash back with his family.
Being mostly about his inner struggle, there
are several spots where you simply have to
take some of the stuff going on with good
faith, due to the lack of explanation. Besides
that, the movie is completely worth seeing,
whether you like horror movies, action movies or sad movies.
would be considered a moderately interesting movie, but with its need to live up, and
its failing to live up, it is a disappointment.
Unless you are an old school fan of the series,
it is not worth your time.
off with a languid “if this is placed in my hands, I’ll strongly consider
actually reading it” attitude. By the time I finished this, in a matter of
three days, it dawned on me that much of the past four years could
have been a substantially happier time if I had followed this suggestion earlier.
Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs is possibly one of the best pieces of pop
culture analysis published in the past decades. With an intensity of
humor and razor sharp wit, Klosterman presents his proposals with
such fervor that the entirety of these eighteen essays and mini-rants
are devoured so quickly, readers will be going back to memorize
Klosterman is possibly the only contemporary author whose prose
can effectively derive meaning in the “Real World” series, mainstream
country music, and the Sims. He effectively dissects the Celtics/Lakers, explains Luke Skywalker as the quintessential Generation Xer, and
Pamela Anderson’s sex appeal with a certain twisted grace. I found
myself clawing for more of his works, scratching at Klosterman interviews and repeating entire paragraphs at parties. The idea that the
reader may not agree with his assertions actually becomes negated to
the fact that on some level, his outrageous, comical, and well-articulated points actually begin to become justified with further reading.
Don’t buy one copy of this. Buy two, or three, in case you lose
the first one. This pop-culture analysis is possibly one of the most
brilliant and amusing pieces of contemporary satire I have ever been
privileged to consume, because simply reading this collection does
not do it justice.
devour readers in a plot of urban mythology and disappearance. The
first part of this prose follows a young French-Canadian boy-author
named Paul in the early 1900’s. Paul is a rather normal boy-except
for one dark secret. He soon learns he has the power to disappear,
including the dark by-products that power also carries.
The second portion of the manuscript reveals Susan, a cousin,
living in the 1980’s, who is desperate to succeed Paul, now dead,
as a writer. She requests an internship with one of Paul’s former
publishers, and while working that job, discovers this strangely
autobiographical manuscript. Suddenly, the concept of his claimed
invisibility is brought into question. When a final section of this story
is revealed, the reader is left to decide between the line separating
truth and fiction.
Though Fade’s plot holds many common milestones for invisibility
fiction, the story is captivating in its own sense. Readers begin to get
a feel for Paul’s beliefs and mannerisms, and within the first ten pages,
he has become more of a friend than any intangible character. The
plot develops with ease, and by the last page, saying goodbye to Fade
feels more like wishing a good friend well, with some resignation to
see them go. Fade is fiction that captivates.
Prozac Nation
Elixabeth Wurtzel
Before reading this book, it is necessary to note a disclaimer.
This movie received an insane amount of
publicity due to viral marketing campaigns
on the web and TV. Several video trailers and
web sites were dedicated to expanding the
mystery that is Cloverfield. The movie takes
place in first person, and the cinematography
consists of nothing more than a household
camcorder. This gives the movie a unique,
yet slightly dizzying, feeling throughout. The
movie follows the story of a group of friends
who start the day off at 1 a.m. having a going
away party for another friend. When a large
albeit short earthquake shakes the island of
Manhattan, several of the people at the party
run to the roof to see destruction and large
chunks of building flying in every direction
including right towards them.
This point is where the movie really starts;
the group tries to escape Manhattan on foot,
but receives a phone call from a friend stuck
in her apartment. Incidentally, by stopping
to take the phone call, the group is saved
from death as the Brooklyn Bridge collapses.
The rest of the movie is about the small
group of four trying to make their way to the
apartment of the friend who is trapped. The
movie is intense and fast paced, occasionally
slowing down so that you can get a really
good look at what is going on. It does differ
from normal monster movies, but if you want
Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs
By Chuck Klosterman
When this book was suggested to me in ninth grade, I passed it
Robert Cormier
It starts simply, with a family portrait. Suddenly, Fade begins to
Alien vs. Predator: Requiem
A lot is expected of this movie given the
massive amount of love people had for the
first movie Alien vs. Predator, as well as the
original Alien and Predator series. Unfortunately, this movie does not deliver. It’s not a
horrible movie. It just does not live up to its
predecessors. With constant plot jumping,
between the humans, the Predator, and the
Aliens, it is hard to see much coherent plot,
besides humans running from both monsters.
The Predators simply want to kill the Aliens.
In the first AVP movie, the Predators were
not all powerful, they showed struggle. This
movie gives the Predator immense power,
and it only struggles when against a special
kind of Alien.
The battle scenes are full of intense fighting, but they are too few and too short to
help this movie come back from the grave.
Not to mention, an additional plot hole when
the Aliens seem to go through no growth
time, they instantly become full grown from
their disgusting birth to their vicious adulthood. There is yet another plot hole in that
the movie never explains where the Aliens
come from. If it had nothing to live up to it
Story and Photography By Rosalinda Albrecht
something unique and gripping, this is completely worth your time. Cloverfield is a “love
it or hate it” kind of movie, either you think
it is great and you are glad you spent your
money to see such an excellent movie, or you
think you could have gotten the same enjoyment out of watching $9 go down the toilet.
name of this book describes exactly the subject matter, and Prozac
Nation, though brilliantly written, and a flawless depiction of depression is not, by any means, a happy read. The language is brilliant,
the points are illustrated with an undeniable amount of accuracy.
However, this book will not make you sympathize with depression,
it will make you empathize, till you feel the “black wave” as Wurtzel
describes it. In a culture where depression has become, as Wurtzel states, the “common cold” of mental illness, there is a certain
misconception that a memoir on depression is expected to be just as
mundane as the disease is understood by the media. This is a fallacy.
Prozac Nation explains depression as it is felt by Wurtzel, from
her early adolescent years and throughout college. Readers find
themselves agonizing with her, destitute, and even, at times, annoyed
at her disease. If depression did not seem real before reading this
biography, it certainly seemed tangible by the closing word. Wurtzel
is brilliant, but her illness proves to be aggravating, petty and, overall,
morose. By the end of the 362 page narrative, Wurtzel will have you
believing that you need Prozac, too.
Yet, although I do suggest reading lighter material soon before or
after exploring this, I strongly suggest Prozac Nation for that reason
specifically, by those who do have depression, but especially for those
without it. For a disease glamorized by celebrities, this book speaks
honestly, bravely, albeit sardonically, and for that, I believe it is worth
the read.
Walking in Circles Before Lying Down
Merrill Markoe
Enter Dawn Tarnauer, a young woman whose life is beginning to
resemble a soap opera in the most undesirable ways possible. Her
family life is a shamble of eccentric and absurd characters, each set in
entrepreneurship in the bizarre, from her mother set on selling “every
holiday” trees, to her overdramatic meddling sister, who is determined to become a life coach to stars of the obscure. Her love life is
just as dismembered, after two divorces and strings of unsuccessful
boyfriends. The one joy she takes is in animals, namely, her pit bull
mix, Chuck, who suddenly decides to offer his take on the situation,
barking it up so that Dawn can actually understand him.
Suddenly, Dawn becomes the Dr. Dolittle of her job at the pet-sitting company she works for. Before long, Dawn is suddenly taken on
the adventure of her life in all ways possible, led by canine instincts
and quite a few strokes of luck.
This book is definitely a fun read, delightful, humorous, and
strangely insightful. Chucks discernments of human activity including his “three minute” test (which is generally his way of seeing
whether Dawn’s prospective boyfriends carry food) and observations
of “sidewalk butterflies” (shadows) will delight readers to the last
page. I strongly suggest this fiction to all readers, regardless of feelings for dogs.
Rating Scale:
***** - Brilliant, memorization material.
**** - Captivating – keep a copy and pass it around.
*** - Good, but forgettable.
** - Cliché and irrelevant
* - Furniture prop
The Roar
Slams Another Season
By Kacee Crandall
Staff Writer
This year’s team has seen
some positive changes since
former Mesa High wrestling
coach, Coach DiDomenico,
got here. Coach DiDomenico
has nine years experience
coaching wrestling in Arizona. With two very impressive coaches, both varsity
and junior varsity have come
together as wrestlers and as
a team.
Coach DiDomenico’s
philosophy, “Show up, work
hard, and be coachable,” has
led this year’s wrestlers into
an amazing season.
Both with impressive records, varsity 17-7, and junior
varsity 5-3, they have had an
exciting season and expect a
strong finish with individuals
in both varsity and junior varsity doing exceedingly well.
While junior varsity focuses on all three of Coach D’s
philosophy, Coach Ullman
says, “Their main focus is to
work hard and move up.”
Coach Ullman, the junior
varsity coach, is impressed
with this year’s team. With
all the progress made, it’s
easy to understand why.
“I have a great group of
kids, and I’ve never seen
another junior varsity team
come together or work as
hard,” said Coach Ullman.
In need of a 103-pound
wrestler, both coaches decided
to move up first-year wrestler,
and sophomore, Wes Medlin.
With the help of his workout
partners and the intensity in
the work out room, Medlin
started getting ready to face
against wrestlers who have
been doing this a lot longer.
“It’s pretty tight being
the only sophomore. It’s
not harder, it’s just that the
competition is more intense,”
says Medlin.
That hard work has come
in to play on the mat. Both
junior varsity and varsity
teams train together, spending
everyday after school, the majority of Saturdays practicing,
-Coach DiDomenico
photo by Portraits by reg
Junior Will Fazette pins his opponent during a wrestling
Lady Lions
Perfect Shot
“Show up,
work hard, and
be coachable.”
and having weekly matches
and tournaments together. It’s
hard to believe they have time
to rest, study, or have fun.
However, the boys all manage
to do well in school and enjoy
their spare time together.
“I like going to the tournaments and then getting to hang
out with my wrestling buddies,” says sophomore Trevor
Charles. “The hardest part of
this whole experience has been
wrestling the seniors with a lot
of experience and losing to
them. Losing is the hardest
part for me.”
February 8, 2008
By Kacee Crandall
Staff Writer
The Red Mountain girls
varsity basketball team strives
to be “better than the average
student not just as grades
go but as role models,” says
Coach Appel.
This year’s team is no
exception. In his ten years
as a coach, Coach Appel
has developed a program by
which he teaches and brings
the team together. After many
of his players, including his
five starters from last year,
graduated, he is rebuilding an
amazing team. With a deceiving record of 6-16, playing
against the best teams in state
and some out-of-state teams
as well, fans have to see the
team play to understand their
“Everybody works so hard
this year, and this is, honestly,
one of the hardest working
teams I have ever been on,”
said senior Deanna Reich, one
of this year’s captains.
The team’s connection
extends beyond just the court
and locker room. They also
reach out to the community
and continue with a five-year
tradition of reading to a first
grade class at Red Mountain
Ranch. It just also happens to
be Coach Appel’s son’s class
this year.
“As a dad, I can see that it
helps build a culture, a community,” Coach Appel said.
His little boy already
knows he wants to go to Red
Mountain and has already
learned the importance of
Mountain Lion pride.
The team also hosts a
summer basketball camp in
June for girls and boys from
kindergarten up to junior high.
Girls who are on the varsity
team, have played in the past,
and hope to some day play on
a basketball team, all come
together on the courts.
“The girls get just as
much out of it as the kids,”
said Coach Appel.
Participating in the camp
has become a routine for
each basketball team, and
now they are starting to see
the turn around. Girls that
went through the camp when
they were in fifth and
“The Red Mountain
sixth grade have come
full circle and are now
girls varsity basketpart of the varsity girls
that help teach others the
ball team strives to
love of the game, like
be “better than the
Sarah Hatch who did
the summer camps prior
average student not
to becoming a varsity
just as grades go but
basketball player.
“I love helping the
as role models.”
kids; they are so cute and
-Coach Appel
funny. And the younger
ones seem to soak everyeach year he learns and hopes
thing in,” said Deanna
that he will continue to grow
as a coach as his girls conAt the beginning of every
tinue to grow as a team. With
season Coach Appel tells the
next year’s team getting some
girls, “If you want to give
more players, the young talent
back to this program, get a
mixing with this year’s team
college degree.”
Of last year’s team, all five is sure to spark an interesting
and untouchable team.
starters and one of the addi“You have to love [coachtional seniors went on to play
ing] with the hours you put
college basketball this year.
in,” said Coach Appel.
Kayla Pedersen was one of
Coach Appel called getting
the girls who started last year
home at 7:30 p.m. an early
and has gone on with a full
night, seeing as how he had
ride basketball scholarship to
been up until 1 a.m. the night
Stanford. Her number, 14,
before watching videos, putwas formally retired, January
ting together some plans, and
18, when she came back to
reviewing for an upcoming
watch this year’s team play.
Coach Appel thinks he is a game.
But is it worth it?
better coach this year then last
“Without a doubt,” Coach
year, despite his state champiAppel
onship last year. He says that
photo by Portraits by reg
“Everybody works so hard this year, and this is, honestly, one
of the hardest working teams I have ever been on,” said senior
Deanna Reich.
12 February 8, 2008
Red Mountain Sports Calendar Red Mountain Girls JV Soccer
JV Baseball
[email protected] Dobson 2/22
-H Mountain
View 2/26
[email protected] Mesa 2/29
-H Buena 3/4
-H Desert Vista
[email protected] Cibola 3/7
[email protected] Desert
Mountain 3/11
JV Softball
-H Mountain
View 2/26
[email protected] Mesa 2/29
[email protected] Buena 3/4
[email protected] Desert Vista
-H Cibola 3/7
-H Desert
Mountain 3/11
Boys Tennis
[email protected] Mountain
Ridge 2/14
[email protected] Desert
[email protected] Buena 3/4
[email protected] Desert Vista Mountain 2/19
-H Chavez 2/21
-H Mountain
-H Cibola 3/7
Pointe 2/26
- Desert
Mountain 3/11 -H Westwood
-H Dobson 3/4
Varsity Softball [email protected] Mountain
View 3/6
[email protected] Buena 3/4
[email protected] Mesa 3/11
-H Desert Vista
Girls Tennis
[email protected] Cibola 3/7
-H Mountain
- @ Desert
Mountain 3/11 Ridge 2/14
-H Desert
Mountain 2/19
-H Chavez 2/21
[email protected] Mountain
Ridge 2/26
[email protected] WestWood
[email protected] Dobson 3/4
-H Mountain
View 3/6
-H Mesa 3/11
Girls /Boys
[email protected] Mesa 2/27
-H Dobson 3/5
-H Westwood
Boys Volleyball
-H Desert Vista
[email protected] McClintock
-H Brophy 3/4
[email protected] Highland 3/5
[email protected] Canyon De
Oro 3/6
[email protected] O’Connor
Kicks it Into High Gear
By Sarah Allmandinger
Staff Writer
The soccer season has
concluded, and Red Mountain
girls junior varsity soccer
team has done a fantastic job
this year, with 11 wins and
two losses.
Since the beginning of
last season, and as the season
has progressed, the girls have
come to know each other better and have learned to blend
their skills and become better
as a whole.
“When we first started out,
we didn’t seem very team
oriented. Then we started
playing, and we connected
well together,” said sophomore Ariel Gnazzo-Kerry.
Something else that has
brought the junior varsity girls
even closer together this year
is the fact that they have all
been playing for majority of
their of their lives.
“I’ve been playing since
kindergarten, so for
about twelve years
now,” said junior
Carly Farr.
A new season is
always awkward.
New players, new
ways of handling
problems, and sometimes a new school.
A successful team
has to make sure
they work together,
get along and mesh
Girls junior varsity soccer works hard to
play a great game.
Freshman Melina Cox-Ferreras plays soccer at
We’re really strong, because
the whole junior varsity team
comes from one community club, Club Soccer,” said
sophomore Jaymie Padilla.
“Even if they aren’t in that
club, we still know them, and
it makes us stronger.”
Although there were struggles and hurdles to overcome
at the beginning, the team
managed to come together
and ended up having a good
time with one another.
“Tryouts are always the
hardest part of the season,
everybody goes in really nervous, we push ourselves very
hard, and then you get into the
season and end up having a
really good time,” said junior
Sierra Fill.
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