The unnoticed efforts behind state championships

Sports at CHS can get exceedingly competitive at times, especially against rivals East and Chapel Hill High. But most CHS athletes believe that state championships can be the most challenging and exciting time for CHS teams. High school sports teams dream about competing in a state championship, and they put in a lot of work that goes unnoticed by their peers at school.

Over the past two years, volleyball and women’s soccer dominated their competition at states. The varsity volleyball team won back-to-back state championships, going undefeated for the past two years. The women’s soccer team has also won back-to-back state championships and hopes to win another this spring.

Senior Evie Joseph has been on the women’s soccer team through three state championships and describes the surreal feeling of winning states.

“I also love the outpouring of support we get when C-Town comes in full force to cheer us on,” said Joseph.

Other sports, such as lacrosse, have come close to winning states but haven’t achieved the accolade yet. The men’s lacrosse team went to the state championship game two years ago but haven’t made it back since.

“The pressure and atmosphere of playoff games are fun to be a part of. I’m excited to get some W’s,” said sophomore lacrosse player Jonathan Osborne. “I think that we have a legitimate chance to win a state championship this year.”

The swim team is another talented CHS team that has made it to states before. Sophomore Alex Prakken believes that he will make it to his first finals just like many other swimmers on the team this year.

“I think that my relay will help the most because we usually do really well and score for the team,” said Prakken, who swims the 200 medley, 200 and 400 freestyle.

Many athletes at CHS aspire to be the next state champs for their sport and work very extensively in the offseason.

“We have been doing a lot of behind-the-scenes work that we don’t get credit for. It started spring of 2017 for us,” said sophomore basketball player Jared Porter.

Thanks to talented players like Jared Porter and Neel Mahavaden, the men’s basketball team has a good chance at going all the way. Porter loves the atmosphere that the playoffs provide.

”Being able to compete in front of people that have been watching me play for a long time is very exciting,” said Porter.

Winning a state championship is the goal for most athletes at CHS. Every ounce of sweat that goes into their efforts to get there will be put on display during the playoffs and ultimately, the finals.

Whose Streets

Whose Streets, a documentary directed by Sabaah Folayan and Damon Davis, portrays the uproar after the death of Mike Brown in Ferguson, Missouri and the protests that occurred in the community after his death. On Monday, January 29 at 7 p.m., the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Chapel Hill Branch will be hosting a screening of the film at no cost and open to the public at the Varsity Theatre on Franklin Street.

Some Carrboro students have already seen the film. Last March, eight Carrboro High students, along with two advisors, traveled to Columbia, Missouri for the True/False Documentary Festival. This event is an annual celebration for the town to acknowledge art through dance, music, media and more. During the trip, the students viewed a series of films from a variety of angles ranging from fireworks in Mexico, to dash-cam footage from car crashes in Russia to injustices in communities of color.   

Whose Streets stood out to many of the students. The documentary focuses in on two women and others in the community. Their dedication to fighting for justice in a town that has a long history of bias in the black community from law enforcement.

Elijah Jones, junior, was one of the students who travelled with the group to Missouri. He reflected on the film and being able to speak with the filmmakers after viewing it.  

“It was impactful, the opportunity of getting to speak with Damon Davis, was also very enlightening,” said Jones.

After the film there will be a panel discussion with Chris Blue, Chapel Hill Chief of Police; Angaza Laughinghouse, staff attorney for the Southern Coalition for Social Justice; and Maya Little, the Silent Sam Sit-In Organizer. This is great opportunity for the town of Carrboro/Chapel Hill to learn about other communities while advocating for their own.

Flyer credit Chapel Hill-Carrboro NAACP

Snowball gives exclusivity the cold shoulder

Every year, the Carrboro Student Government Association (SGA) throws the Snowball dance, the only SGA-sponsored dance where all grades are invited. In past years, it has been held at venues such as the Haw River Ballroom and the Friday Center. This year, Snowball is taking a different turn, as it will be held on Saturday, January 27, in the commons of Carrboro High School.

This year, all SGA officers ran on a platform of wanting to be more inclusive and that all Carrboro students should be able to feel like a Jaguar, explained Cameron Farrar, Carrboro’s SGA treasurer. In past years, some students have refrained from attending school hosted events due to transportation and money issues. The changes this year are meant to make Snowball a place where everyone feels welcome.

Since Snowball is being held at the school, there is easier access for students to attend. For example, Chapel Hill Transit, the city bus system, provides easy transportation. Many students also live in apartments within walking distance of school. Another important aspect of the dance being held at Carrboro is that everyone knows its location, since; we come here everyday. In the past, location has created issues with cost and attendance

SGA didn’t want price to be a deciding factor in students’ attendance. This year’s Snowball tickets are only $10 for a single and $15 for a couple which is much cheaper than previous years. Hopefully this drop in price will encourage more students to attend.

Farrar mentioned that there is a large demographic of students who don’t feel welcomed at school events.

“I think there is a certain comfort in knowing about the school and where the school is so you don’t have to be worrying about a bunch of different things,” said Farrar.

Additionally, SGA is really pushing the winter wonderland theme, with plans for: trees, snowflakes, lights and even chicken nuggets!

Snowball will be held Saturday, January 27 from 8 to 11 p.m. If you haven’t bought your tickets yet, don’t worry; they are available for purchase at the door!

CHS divided: Debate club does it again

On January 11, the CHS debate club, led by Jonah Perrin, senior, held its fourth debate since the creation of the club this fall.

This week’s debate topic was on immigration policies and the issue of building a border wall to keep out illegal immigrants. According to Chris Beichner, Social studies teacher and debate club advisor, over 70 people showed up to the debate.

Students ranging from all grades, ages, races and political beliefs attended the debate to either share their opinions or listen to those of others. Anti-immigration perspectives tended to support the building of a border wall, increasing border security and reducing the number of illegal immigrants in America. Pro-immigration students maintained that immigrants benefit the economy and add to society. They proposed funneling money into an improved immigration system rather than a border wall.

While managed by both Perrin and Beichner, the debate did at times take a hostile turn, owing to the controversial nature of the subject. Some students felt it was sometimes one-sided and difficult to prevent people from interrupting each other.

“I definitely thought it was one-sided at times; we need more Republican voices. We should be nicer to each other as well, no more personal attacks,” said Roman Perone, junior.

Other students were disappointed with how the debate turned out. Ezster Rimanyi, also a junior, believes there should be more understanding of different perspectives and actual debate for the sake of debating.

“I feel like in a bunch of debates there is a lack of opposition with really good points. We never have the ‘I can see;’ we feel like we have to just be part of one party or side. I would like to let go of emotion…If I’m on the republican side, I should be able to say, ‘I can see’. We never have that, and that’s what I kind of miss,” said Rimanyi.

Beichner, who supervises the debates (which take place in his room), has a different perspective disregarding parties or political affiliations. He felt positively about the turnout of students and their ability to debate.

“The topics are controversial, but for the most part students have been respectful. Mostly, I’ve been amazed by well-spoken people are off-the-cuff. [You’re] just 16 or 17 years old, and it’s pretty impressive to me,” said Beichner.

Further debates will be held in Beichner’s room, E216, pending the decision of new topics. Contact Perrin for information about the debate club, or if you have ideas for a debate topic.

Photo by Olivia Weigle

Girls Give Back

This Thursday, January 11, DECA will host the Girls Give Back benefit concert, working alongside the CHS Young Feminist Club.

The concert will consist of performances by a capella groups from CHS’ Sophistickeys, CHHS’ Lucky 13  and UNC Chapel Hill’s the Loreleis. There will be two featured performers, Millie McGuire, senior, and Sibel Byrnes, CHS English teacher.

Senior Kirby Thornton, the CHS DECA Chapter President, explained the idea behind the organization of the event.

“I had the interest to join [the Young Feminist Club] and help them market the event because it is a good idea to have all female performers giving back to a female-driven charity,” said Thornton.

To organize the event, Thornton used her four year experience on DECA to market the concert.

“DECA has taught me to be a leader, to learn how to delegate, as well as critical skills in business and event planning. It helps me understand what goes into a marketing plan and how to best advertise the event,” said Thornton.

Thornton elaborated on the importance of using your own interests to benefit others in the community.

“There are so many different ways to give back to a community. While volunteering is helpful, we have the ability, as younger students, to put on programs that are really awesome,” said Thornton.

Minimum entry to the event is currently listed at $5. All proceeds of the event—donated clothing, canned foods and money—are going to the HomeStart Shelter for Women and Children.

Tight Basketball Games last Tuesday

The women’s Varsity Basketball played Reidsville High School on January 2 at home.

The first half was very , the score bouncing back and forth between the Jags and the Rams. Deja Tucker, senior point guard, contributed offensively and Gabby Adams, senior guard, made a buzzer beater three at the half. Jags wrapped up the half down by five points, 20 to 25.  

“I cannot believe I made that,” said Adams after the game.

The Jags came back at the half ready to fight. Maria Negro- Sacristan, junior small forward, tied up the game 25 to 25 with five minutes left in the third half. Riley Croasmun, freshman small forward, brought the Jags to a lead with a two-pointer. The Rams came back with the lead with a minute left in the third quarter. Tucker brought the score back to a tie, ending the quarter 30 to 30. At the beginning of fourth quarter, Cameron Farrar, senior small forward, hit a powerful three to bring the Jags back to their lead.

The last minute was filled with constant timeouts and foul shots, with both teams trying to get the lead. The Jags fought hard, falling short two points ending the score at 43 to 41.

Following the women’s game, Varsity boys took the the floor. The first shot of the game was a three pointer made by Neel Mahadevan, senior guard. Shamel Partridge, junior forward, pushed out hard rebounds the entire first quarter. The quarter wrapped up with the Jags down by one point.

The Jags returned from the quarter break fired up, getting them a lead in the second half. Chris Thompson, junior forward, contributed with an and-one and a strong block on defense. Partridge and Nick Jones, senior guard, made three pointers.

The second half started with the Jaguars leading 43 to 25. Jones and Will Riggs, junior point guard, dominated the three-point line. A two pointer from DeAndre Burnette, junior forward, with a minute to go in the third quarter brought the Jags to a 21 point lead. The third quarter ended with great defense from both sides with a score of 48-64.

Fourth quarter began with the first points from Thompson with a step and slide to the basket followed by an and-one. The Rams closed the gap to one point with two minutes and 40 seconds left. The score bounced back and forth with a one point lead with 40 seconds to go. Zachary Anderson, senior forward, attempted a lay-up and received a foul, leading the Jags to a two point lead and a tight 40 second game. With one second left, Jones received a foul and made the final foul shot, leading to the 78 to 76 win for the Jags.

Photo by Niya Fearrington