Swimming brings home Conference Championship

This past Wednesday, January 23, Carrboro High School Varsity and JV swim teams competed at Conference Championships at Duke University in Durham. The competing teams were recurring opponents North Carolina School of Science and Math (NCSSM), Durham School of the Arts (DSA) and Reidsville. This was the last meet before the Regionals and States meets.

The Carrboro girls came in first overall at Wednesday’s meet, scoring 185 points and crowning the Varsity and JV teams as Conference champions. The Carrboro boys teams came in second with 129 points.

Both the girls and boys did very well, raking in many All Conference titles. To gain this title, the swimmer must place first or second overall in their event. The girls won 11 All Conference titles while the boys won four titles.

All Conference winners for the CHS girls included seniors Paloma Baca, Anneliese Merry and Audrey Costley, as well as freshmen Emily Carpenter, Eve McCallion, Kate Hegland and Lindy Bilden. All Conference winners for the CHS boys were senior Ian Ward and juniors Lincoln Wurster and Alex Prakken.

This was the last meet to make qualifying times before High School Division 1A/2A Regionals. With the swim season coming to its end, CHS swimmers are prepared to give it their all at Regionals and States.

Bugs vs. Ballers: a look into rec basketball

Stink Bug Nation poses after Monday’s game. From left to right: Mason Cox, Lincoln Wurster, Jack Morgan, Daniel Sheyko, Sebastian Phalling, Teddy Johnson, and Braden Hunter.
Photo courtesy Shamael Partridge

At 9 pm on Monday, January 28, a group of students piled into the Chapel Hill Community Center stands to watch the highly anticipated rematch between two CHS rec basketball teams: the Stink Bugs and Big Baller Brand (BBB).

The Stink bugs, featuring sophomore Jack Morgan and junior Teddy Johnson, opened the game with a strong run, jumping out to an early first quarter lead behind sharp shooting by Johnson. Big Baller Brand, led by seniors Serhat Calikoglu and Kevin O’Donnell, fought their way back into the game on the back of Calikoglu, who knocked down three 3-pointers.

From the second quarter on however, it was the Jack Morgan show. Morgan got the basket at will, using an array of dribble moves to get through the BBB 2-3 zone, which many times resulted in Morgan shooting free throws.

“It was a big game, so I had to take it over to win. After getting blown out the first time we played, we couldn’t get embarrassed again,” said Morgan regarding his aggressive tactics in last night’s contest.

He finished the game with 30 of his team’s 43 points. Morgan is a starting shooting guard for the Carrboro junior varsity team, but enjoys rec basketball games more.

“These games are way easier than school. Driving [to the basket] is much easier for me and I can get creative. In school I try to be more of a spot up shooter,” said Morgan.

While Stink Bug nation celebrated their seemingly easy win last night, BBB star Serhat Calikoglu believes the game could’ve gone much differently if he wasn’t ejected early in the 3rd quarter.

“Unfortunately the referees tried to make themselves bigger than the game. Had I been allowed to play the rest of the game it would’ve been a different outcome because everyone knows Jack Morgan can’t guard me,” said Calikoglu.

Calikoglu finished with 11 points in nine minutes of play. Members of both rec teams are looking to add new members to their clubs for the summer season, recruiting across all CHS grades.

CHS wrestles at Conference tournament

Top, from left to right: Brian Buck, sophomore; Israel Medrano, senior; Hank Hultman, senior; Aidan Thorne, sophomore; Matteo Fulghieri, senior Bottom, from left to right: Jacobie Lewis, senior; Alex Malagon, junior. Photo by Louise Monnet

On January 26, the Carrboro wrestling team hosted the 2019 2A MidState Conference tournament. The CHS team wrestled at home against Bartlett Yancey, Reidsville, Cummings and North Carolina School of Science and Math (NCSSM).

Carrboro placed second overall with 111 points out of the five teams. They also finished with three runner ups and three Conference champions out of nine wrestlers competing. Brian Buck, Alex Malagon and Israel Medrano were the runner ups for CHS. Aidan Thorne and Matteo Fulghieri and Hank Hultman were crowned conference champions.

Reidsville finished first with 137 points and five conference champions, Cummings finished third with 104 points and three conference champions, Bartlett Yancey finished forth with 85 points and two conference champions and NCSSM finished fifth with 68 points and one conference champion.

Hultman and Fulghieri claimed their second conference titles of their careers. Carrboro wrestlers Buck, Malagon, Medrano, Thorne, Hultman and Fulghieri were named All-Conference, finishing top two in their weight class. Additionally, Jacobie Lewis was named All-Conference under an at large bid, voted by the coaches. As a final victory of the day, Matteo Fulghieri was voted the MidState Conference Wrestler of the year. This marks the fourth consecutive year a CHS wrestler has claimed this title.

Snowball 2019: a preview

As students wrap up their second quarter, one of the most anticipated events is the Snowball Dance, in which students go to dance the night away with friends and dates.

Snowball will be held in the CHS commons on January 25, where students can dance and eat snacks. Tickets were available during the week of January 14 near the library.

Tickets cost $20 for one and $15 for a pair and will be available at the door. The dance will be from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m., according to Isabel Simmons, Junior Student Councilwoman. All grades will be allowed to attend. The dress code for the dance is formal wear. There are many things to expect from this year’s dance, with food trucks such as Hotcakes and Chicken, Mapleview and Wil 4 Pop’s.

With so many things to expect for this year’s dance, how can it compare to last year’s dance? Sydney Shortridge, Carrboro Junior, talked about Snowball 2018 when she was a sophomore.

“I had a lot of fun…I definitely enjoyed the chicken nuggets last year.”

There are things that students think could be improved too. Shortridge said that she will go again, but thinks that ticket prices aren’t ideal.

“[The prices] are a little high and that might limit how many people go. If prices can be any lower that would be a good improvement.”

Overall, this year’s snowball is very promising. With food trucks and dancing, Carrboro High students are expected to have a lot of fun.

CHS Must Address Popularity of Juuls and E-cigarettes

In Carrboro High School, “Juuling” been a problem since the start of 2017. Students bring their electronic devices such as vapes or Juuls and they share it in the school bathrooms. Juuls are e-cigarettes originally designed to help nicotine smokers to quit smoking cigarettes.

In the past year, use of Juuls by high schoolers increased by “78 percent between 2017 and 2018,” said Rachel Becker, backed up by information from the FDA. Juuls can harm these vapers’ bodies, and in the future it can possibly cause dangerous diseases, heart problems, cancer or addiction. As mentioned on Juul’s website, James Monsees and Adam Bowen co-founded Juul when they applied their background in product design to the challenge of finding a better alternative to smoking.

I believe that using Juuls are very dangerous because they deliver nicotine. Some students do not even know that Juuls contain nicotine.

It is rare to ever see a student smoking a cigarette in the bathrooms with the continual increase in underage vapers. Most of the students that vape do it because of peer pressure.

A recent study at Brown University in Providence, R.I. found that “Peer smoking was by far the strongest predictor of smoking progression,” said the study’s lead author Elizabeth.

As mentioned by Jordan Crook, writing for TechCrunch,’s article, the US Food and Drug Administration is increasing efforts to help keep young people from using Juuls. “The commissioner today announced a plan that would remove all flavored electronic nicotine delivery system products.”

Schools such as Carrboro should focus on educating students.

The school is not taking a correct approach to students who are smoking Juuls, but instead they suspend them for at least 3 days which gives the students more free time to smoke and not be in school.

Some students in CHS mentioned that some high schools have removed the doors of the bathrooms and reported to teachers to watch out and don’t let more than one student go to the restroom at the same time. It’s going to be difficult for high schools to stop students from Juuling because of its increasing popularity. Schools such as Carrboro should focus on educating students about Juuls and how they could be harmed as opposed to implementing current methods of punishment.

Students represent at #WomensWave march

On Saturday, January 19, walking towards the Freedom Plaza in Washington D.C., pedestrians joined the gathering throng of protesters for the third annual Women’s March. The crowd was thick with chaos and disorganization; pink hats bobbed and signs waved as hawkers sold buttons and music played all around. People stopped to admire the increasingly creative signs, each with its own message, yet all with the same underlying purpose: to fight for their voices to be heard.

Among those present were Carrboro students, like Ella Shapard, senior, who has attended all three of the women’s marches since 2017.

“I love going to marches like these,” said Shapard. “This year, I noticed a lot of little girls [marching], which made me so happy because I think it’s important for younger generations of girls to feel empowered and supported.”

This year’s Women’s March, dubbed the #WomensWave, is the third of its kind since its formation in 2017, following President Trump’s inauguration. Hundreds of thousands of protesters across the nation originally rallied together to protest injustice, specifically against women, people of color, LGBTQ communities and other marginalized groups.

However, this year’s Women’s March varied from those of years past in multiple ways. According to NPR, accusations of anti-Semitism linked to some of the leaders of the Women’s March, lead large organizations such as the Democratic National Committee to drop their sponsorship of the event. Across the nation, marches on Saturday had lower turnout as many supporters decided to stay home.

Despite the confusion and controversy, the protesters marched with the same enthusiasm and courage as seen in past years.

Marchers in D.C. kicked off the protest at the Freedom Plaza then marched down Pennsylvania Ave NW. Shouts of “Shame!” rose as they passed the Trump International Hotel, while a female marching band beat out a rhythm in front. As protesters turned onto 10th St NW, an echoing chant unified marchers as they cried, “Show me what democracy looks like; this is what democracy looks like!”

“Being with all of those empowered women makes me feel more optimistic about the future of our country, especially at a time when it is easy to get frustrated with the current administration and the ideology of hatred that it promotes,” said Shapard, about her overall impression of this year’s protest.

Protestors eventually looped back to Freedom Plaza, waving signs as leaders spoke out from a central stage.

Protesters held signs advocating for peace at Saturday’s march in D.C.

Protesters this year opposed myriad issues, challenging white supremacy, sexism, the GOP, Trump’s wall and racism, to name a few others. Marchers also held signs that objected to the treatment of immigrants at the border and indigenous peoples, as well as advocating for popular figures such as Dr. Christine Ford, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

This year’s protests coincided with the recent, and unprecedented, amount of women elected to Congress in the midterms, as well as the new Democratic majority in the House. Other recent events, like the government shutdown, fueled a new kind of fury for protesters in the streets, with many signs including messages about shutting down Trump instead of our government.

Positive Reception from the Band’s First Concert of 2018-2019

Carrboro High School’s band had their first concert of the year on December 14, 2018, showing their ability to perform familiar and unfamiliar music in a classical style. While not the most popular class in Carrboro, the students who take band really seem to enjoy and appreciate the experiences they get from the class.

“I have gotten so many benefits from being in band that to be honest, it is kind of unreal. It’s been an eye-opener for me ever since middle school. And to be honest if I didn’t have band I wouldn’t be the person that I am as of today, and for that, I can not be grateful enough,” said Jeremiah Shelton, sophomore.

“It’s really amazing to see kids perform in such of professional level,” said Vivian Pitts, Shelton’s mother.

Most of the parents enjoyed the performance. It was a challenge for the class of 2018-2019 because there was a lot of growing that happened since 2017. A lot of new students and freshmen form the majority of the class.

“Almost two-thirds of the band are freshmen, which [means] they will have a lot of growing as musicians,” said Casey Spillman, CHS’s band teacher.

The band performance allowed students to show off their talents.“My favorite thing they did well is how much energy they brought to the stage,” said Spillman.

Some of parents and students were surprised by the music selections, as a there was only one Christmas song.

“They should have done songs that were more familiar. I thought they will have more Christmas music,” said Pitts.

It’s very important that bands change their tone for each new piece, depending on the character. Instrumentation alone won’t do that. There has to be a concept along with it.

Spillman had a lot of fun ways to involve others in the concert — not just playing instruments, but getting some teachers to wear helmets and tapping their heads with paper pipes to make music.

Spillman also mentioned in the concert that the young musicians are working to become better and have more power in the music to impress families.

MLK Day: A day on, not a day off

Martin Luther King Jr., born in 1929, was a civil rights activist and pastor from Atlanta, Georgia, who propelled the civil rights movement of the mid 20th century with his leadership. He gave hope to many African-Americans around the United States and took a stand at combating racial inequality in the nation.

Along with his rise in fame during the 1960s, King gained many enemies and opposition due to his stance on civil rights and peaceful protest. Despite personal death threats and attacks against him and his family, including a bomb thrown into his house in retaliation to the successful Montgomery Bus Boycott, King stood strong and maintained his fight for the rights he believed in. King was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee in 1968, but his legacy lives on in modern civil rights protests and especially during MLK Day.

Soon after King’s death, a campaign to honor his life works and achievements began, with President Ronald Reagan finally signing the MLK Day holiday into effect in 1983. With King’s birthday being January 15, the holiday was officially recognized on the third Monday of January, close to his birthday.

This year the holiday, recognized on January 21, was given the title ‘the MLK Day of Service’ by the Corporation of National and Community Service. It is considered a day of service because it “is intended to empower individuals, strengthen communities, bridge barriers, create solutions to social problems, and move us closer to Dr. King’s vision of a ‘Beloved Community,’” and is observed as a “day on, not day off.”

The website of the MLK Day of Service has volunteer opportunities posted for anyone to attend, including anything to help others; it does not just have to be related to civil rights. Volunteer opportunities in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro region include driving a senior to the doctor, the youth cloth bag project, volunteering with churches and more.

Though we just have one day to memorialize Martin Luther King and his monumental achievements, you can sign up to volunteer at any time of the year in his honor by visiting https://www.nationalservice.gov/serve-your-community/mlk-day-service.

Carrboro Brings Home Wins at Edison Johnson

On Wednesday, January 16, the Carrboro Varsity and JV swims teams competed at Edison Johnson Aquatic Center in Durham, North Carolina. The teams raced against returning rivals, DSA (Durham Schools of the Arts) and NCSSM (North Carolina School of Science and Math).

 

There were high school practices scheduled after the swim meet so due to this, the meet started at 5:00 pm and had to end by 6:30 pm. Even with the need get out of the water, Carrboro was able to bring in a good number of points.

The girls pulled in two firsts, scoring 74 points against the 19 points from NCSSM and 76 points to 18 points against DSA. Boys brought in a single first, scoring 50 points against 44 points against DSA. They also placed second, scoring 26 points against 68 points for NCSSM.

 

Overall, the boys, and especially the girls, did very well. Notable swims included  sophomore Jackson Lee, dropping nine seconds on his 500-freestyle, as well as dropping three seconds on his 200-freestyle.

 

On the girls side, sophomore Sophia Lee dropped 6 seconds on her 100-breaststroke, while junior Bridget Buchanan dropped six seconds on her 50-freestyle.

 

With the season coming to an end; only a few meets left, then regionals and states, the Carrboro swim team looks to be ending their season on a good note.