By: Grace Detrick and Valentino Fazio
This week we asked the managers of two different sports teams here at WHS what their experience is like. We talked to seniors Olivia Destefani and Gabby Klementon, who manage the boys’ baseball team, and senior Riley Grenier who managed the girls’ basketball team this past winter.
If you’ve ever considered becoming a manager, now's the time because the three managers mentioned are graduating this year, leaving openings for the 2019-2020 sports seasons.
We wanted to find out what exactly a managing job entails so students can see if the job would be right for them. As for baseball, you have to do the book and write down everything that happens in the game like a strike or ball, etc.
“At first it was very hard learning how to do everything and we were clueless, but now we have the hang of it,” Klementon added. She records the stats manually on an iPad and keeps track of the pitch count during the game.
Grenier’s job however, is a little different. For the girls’ basketball manager, there is more participation involved and less stat recording.
“I have to participate and come to every practice as a ‘practice player’, run drills, and play defense on the girls,” Grenier explained.
Both of these jobs have easy aspects and challenging components as well. Destefani and Klementon both agreed writing down the players names before the game is the easiest and knowing what to classify every pitch or play is the hardest part. Destefani said, “It's all worth it because when we win or we make them cookies they get so hype.”
Grenier’s idea of the most difficult part of being a manager was “running a ton and repeating drills.” However, he really enjoyed the job because of the friendships he made with the players and getting to know people he didn't talk to before.
The best piece of advice Klementon and Destefani wanted to give to future managers was not to make Coach Bagdasarian mad and hang in there because it's hard at first, but gets easier and you'll get the hang of it.
Grenier had similar advice that it gets easier along the way as long as you show up on time, do what you're told and are ready to run.
If you think you would want to take over either of these positions and are interested in managing either sport next season, speak to Coach Russell or Coach Bagdasarian.
By: Kayla Cruz and Aliza Yousufzai
Spring has arrived and that means spring sports are now in full swing and all the athletes are getting ready to win their future meets. Although spring track started in the beginning of March, they are still training to win.
We got the chance to sit and chat with the captain of the track team Amayia Giscombe to see what is going on in the track world and what it’s like to have such an important role in the team. Giscombe mostly does throwing: shot, disc, and javelin. We also learned about what roles she has on the team besides doing the activities that they do on track. She has the privilege of being the main part of the team and help the other team members.
We were interested in seeing how it is different being a captain versus being a team member. “Some of the duties are to show people how they should throw, such as form and just be very uplifting ‘oh you can do this you got this.’”
These little pointers help the team work together better and motivates them to move forward and win at the next meet. Some people join and don't know how to do certain things so teaching them how to do it is part of her job. Making sure the team comes together is very important and helps them win the meets.
“Being a captain I am more aware of the forms of everyone else if I see that someone is struggling I make sure to help them. I'm not always the best, like yesterday some of the freshman threw better than me but it’s okay I’m proud of them that means I’m doing my job.” Overall, the track team is of to a very good start this season.
Make sure to support the Wethersfield track at their next home meet on April 30, 2019 versus Rocky Hill at 3:45.
By Christian Galain & Austin Harnish
The Wethersfield boys volleyball team are tied with rival Newington at the top of Class M as they are set to square off on Wednesday May 1st. Newington were the class M state champs of 2012, 2014, 2015, and 2017.
“Seniors Riley Grenier, Kevin Rascius, and Josh Malizia are our captains.” said junior outside hitter Rei Koni, “As leaders, I know they can take us far, they are confident in us and themselves, and I know I don’t have any worries with them on our team.”
We then talked to the head coach Deborah O’Brien, Ms. O’Brien has been coaching girls volleyball since 1990. She was the assistant coach for 4 years and then became the head coach. She has been coaching the boys since 2007; after being the assistant for 2 years she then became the head coach.
“Our season has gotten off to an excellent start. We are currently 9-0. The athletes worked hard during the off season and continue to work hard at each practice and match. They all have strong skills and are playing well as a team, their positive attitudes are also an asset,” said Coach O’Brien.
“This team is gelling very well. Team chemistry makes a big difference. This team is one of the most motivated, hard working, skilled teams we have had in a few years. Many of the players have a lot of varsity experience.”
One last question that we had asked was how are the captains showing leadership on the court, “We have 3 captains this year. All 3 of them are working hard on their own skills and work hard to motivate their teammates during practices and games. They lead by example. They are able to keep the team focused and positive during practices and games.”
Make sure to come out and support the volleyball team for their next game, on Wednesday May 1st, and the rest of the season. Games usually begin around 5:00pm, to see the whole schedule click on the link.
by: Tea Hima and Kelly Scales
Spring sports are just around the corner, which means Wethersfield High School students have been preparing for tryouts that start on March 16. One sport to be on the lookout for this season is Girls Tennis. We interviewed senior Paige Contenta and asked her what’s in store for the team this upcoming season.
Contenta is very excited to see what the season brings us, “We have a lot of new freshman girls that are super interested. The team has been helping them with their strokes and they have a lot of potential.” The team has has off season practices at the Newington Tennis Center in order to prepare for the spring season.
Although WHS has many rivalry teams, such as Glastonbury and Rocky Hill, they are confident that the new girls coming in will fill up the spots on the lineup and help lead the team to victory. A major goal the team has is to win All State, and in order to do so they need to win against Rocky Hill. The team will be working hard throughout the season in order to accomplish this goal.
The season ends in late May, and the team will be playing 15 matches with other schools across Connecticut. In early June, the girls will be participating in team states as well as individual states.
If you are interested in trying out for the girls tennis team, please see Mrs. Kremer and Mr. Scopetto with any questions. If you’re not interested in sports, then come out and support the team at their first match of the season right here at WHS on April 4 at 3:45! You won’t want to miss it.
By: Alexis Szymecki and Matt Iallonardo
On Tuesday March 5, the 28th ranked Wethersfield Boys Basketball team played fell to the 5th ranked Amity High School.
The Wethersfield boys were coming off an exciting win over the Rocky Hill Terriers, earning the last spot in the State Tournament.
Eager to earn another win, the Wethersfield boys came out with heart. By halftime, the Eagles were down 24-21, but still in the game.
Derek Tenney, senior captain for the Eagles, said “At the end of game we settled for some bad shots, and they made their free throws and we didn’t.”
The boys continued to battle in the second half, and were leading 42-40 in the beginning of the fourth quarter, but their lead slipped away due to Amity’s fast-paced offense. The final score was 57-48, and Wethersfield was eliminated from the tournament.
Senior captain Dante Burgos said, “Some things I would change in the final game was definitely execution and plays and being able to finish easy shots. I feel like defensively we played a really good game and offensively we played good but just didn’t play good enough.”
This year the team was thought to have a successful season. “We made playoffs so that was a success, but we definitely could have been better. We lost some close games that we should’ve won, so overall it wasn’t a bad season but it could’ve been better.” said Tenney.
Burgos was proud of the team on and off the court. “I believe that throughout the season there was a lot of growth and maturity from my teammates and I. We made a lot of progress and had a lot of kids step up during the right times...obviously the season didn’t end the way we wanted to but I do think there was some success during the season.”
It was a hard fought season, and we wish the best of luck to our three senior players who played their last game on Tuesday. We look forward to having an exciting season next year, with Luke Latina leading the way.
By: Grace Detrick and Valentino Fazio
Josh Malizia and Riley Grenier play for the Volleyball team at Wethersfield High School and are excited for the upcoming 2019 season, starting up in the next couple of weeks.
WHS seniors Riley Grenier, Josh, Malizia, Kevin Rascius, Mason Sunquist, and John Schiavone will be returning this season, joined by seniors John Tine and Luke Kelleher, who will be trying out for the team this year.
“My expectations for this season are to work as a team and make states and go decently far.” Grenier said. This seems like a very good goal for them to try and achieve this year after making it to the quarterfinals last season.
When we asked Grenier what he was most excited for this season and why he enjoys being on the volleyball team, he said, “I’m most excited to just start playing again and I love the team and the vibe we put off.” This team seems like a really fun one to be on and it would be a good time to try out since the team will be losing possibly seven seniors when they graduate this year.
Malizia told us about what seniors graduated after last season and what affect that will have on the team. “Camden Johnson, Matt Amoddio and Kieran Senk graduated last year and I will especially miss Kieran because we would always would fool around last year and have a good time.” Grenier added to that by saying, “Losing people has some effect on us but if we have the right pieces to replace them we’ll be ok.”
“I talk to Riley and Kevin about the upcoming season all the time and I think we are going to win the state championship, or at least be in the state championship game. That's been our goal since sophomore year when most of us joined the team. I think we should go 15-5 and have a fantastic season”. Malizia said. Grenier and Malizia both had similar goals and expectations for this season so we hope it will be a successful one for the team!
To sign up and be a part of the team, tryouts are March 16. You can get your yellow card as soon as possible before tryouts. Make sure to be there for the first game on April 1!
By: Paige Contenta and Kaitlyn Swoverland
The Wethersfield Boys Swim & Dive Team are entering states, Saturday March 9 with a 11-1 record in Division M.
The Swim & Dive team came out of an undefeated season last year in hopes for the same results this season, but team fell to Hall this year, their only loss of the season with a score of 93.5 to 92.5, which Co-Captain and senior Caleb Skowronek said was their hardest meet by far.
Skowronek said, “None of our other meets were that close because a lot of top tier swimmers graduated and we were coming out of an undefeated season. I think some people weren’t ready for a meet that close, and the team was very different after that meet.”
He feels his team has grown from this loss and has came out as a stronger and better team. “Obviously I would have liked to have gone undefeated, but I feel the season was very successful. We put in a lot of hard work at practice, averaging 6500 yards, which is about 4 miles, 6 days a week. I think we’re really going to see the benefits from that at states,” said Skowronek.
Wrapping up the regular season, Skowronek hopes to see improvement for each individual swimmer swimming at prelims and states.
The boys swim team has put up so much work in order to get to states, and they want to give it their all. Skowronek says, “I think we’re at a very good place going in but we won't know for sure until the meet actually happens.”
States is a very competitive and exclusive event in swimming. “The top 36 swimmers in every event in each respective class swims at prelims, and the top 26 swim at finals on monday.” said Skowronek.
When you make the state cuts there is a lot the boys have to do to prepare for the big days. Every boy shaves all the hair on their body and tapers themselves. “We shave as well which reduces the amount of drag and it makes the water feel very different, which is a huge advantage.” said Skowronek.
They want to make sure they are prepared for the big day, so when they taper they dramatically decrease the amount of yards they swim in practice each week. This allows for their muscles to repair and rest before they work them to their max during states.
By: Ashley Anduha and Mark Nieves
Career Preparation is a class at Wethersfield High School that involves planning for your future. It is a class available to any grade and it is taught by business teacher Mr. Chris Palazzo.
Palazzo describes this class as, “Providing students with the opportunity to learn about future careers, the opportunity to gain experience with interviews, gain experience with potential employers. It gives students the opportunity to dive deeper into their interests.”
It is an amazing class for every student’s future, even if you know what you want to do after high school. Career Prep still prepares you for your career because you learn things that are very important.
Palazzo recommends that every student at every grade level take this class. He says it can be very good for freshman who have never thought about what is next after high school but also for seniors because you are on your way to graduating and this class can put you a step ahead in your next path in life.
It is an eye opening class for anyone who hasn’t really gotten involved with school because you realize the importance of things like extra curricular activities so it pushes students to get more involved.
In this class, you learn things that are very important for when you go to interview for a job and Palazzo describes this as a major benefit to this class, “All students get the opportunity to develop a resume, write a cover letter, a follow up letter, having the experience of talking with potential employers, learning about careers that will one day provide them with a paycheck and help them make sure that their happy with their future.”
In this class there is a segment called “Mock Interviews” that you prepare for throughout the semester. Before you start your mock interview, you build a resume full of information about your job experiences, skills, awards education etc. as well as a cover letter and with this you meet with a mock “interviewer” and you get a grade based on how you do in the interview. It is a good way to work on and realize any struggles you had with the interview.
Many students who have taken the class can agree that it is very helpful for them especially because they learn things before that nobody has taught them before. Not many people know how to make a resume, many don’t know what a cover and thank you letter are, and a lot have never gotten the experience to practice in a mock interview.
In conclusion, we highly recommend this class to every student who attends Wethersfield High School, It will be a great help in the future. You will not be disappointed after taking this class, in fact you'll thank us.
by: Kenan Mujic and Matt Zapata
The annual Hoops for Heart basketball tournament is set to happen after school on Wednesday, March 13 after school in both gyms at Wethersfield High School.
Hoops for Heart is a double elimination 3v3 basketball tournament with a winners and a losers bracket. The cost per player is $5.
The competition level will be very high and students are looking to take over the teachers success. A team of three students is out there trying to take over the big three of teachers, who have won the tournament three years in a row.
Head of Student Council and Physical Education teacher, Mr. Richard Scopetto, said that all the proceeds go to a good cause.
¨All the proceeds will go out to the American Heart Association. The number one cause of death in the United States is heart disease,¨ Scopetto said.
Although this tournament is for a good cause, don’t be fooled! There has been trash talking going on around the school, whether it is between students, or even students and their teachers. This tournament is meant for people to just come out and have a good time, as Sco said.
¨It's a good cause number one, but it's also a good chance for people to get together and have a good time in spite of the cause.¨
People can come out and take the focus off of their problems, and just play ball and compete for a few hours, and bring your talking and prove it on the court.
You can talk all you want, but your game on the court will do all the talking for you once the stage is set, and that's exactly how Sco explained it.
¨There's a lot of ya ya, at the end of the game there is no more ya ya, you can't talk bad to kids that beat you in the previous game!¨
If you are not coming out to play, make sure you come out and support the teams vying for the win this year.
Eagle Nation is excited for this tournament, and everyone is anxious to finally find out who will come out on top.
by: Jimmy Luiz, WHS Basketball Guard
We have had a solid run the last few games, but these next are the most important by far, We have 5 games left and we need to win 3 out of the 5 to get into states. If we win all 5, we have a chance at CCCs, but our goal is states.
We have Rocky Hill and Newington still to play for the second time this year, We have beaten Rocky Hill before and Newington we have not beat yet. If it comes down to it, Newington is the last game of the regular season. Hopefully we get 3 wins before we play them but if we have 2, that last game we will need everyone at that game, These games are so important, we need everyone talking about it and as many people as possible at those games cheering us on.
I remember playing against Windsor this year and when we had the crowd we were able to keep up with them and actually have the lead against them for a really good amount of time. Windsor is considered the best team in the state right now and that crowd helped us stay in that game.
What I’m trying to say is that with a big crowd anything is possible and especially against the teams that we are supposed to win against, blowing them out makes a statement and that’s what we need going into these last 5 games.
by: Jack Blaisdell
The Eagles Hockey season begins on Monday, November 26th. I have a discussion with captain starting goalie Jake Peckrul about the expectations, reality, and what the fans should be prepared for heading into the 2018-19 Hockey Season.
Going into the season while thinking about the previous, what are the goals for the Eagles Hockey Team?
“We definitely want to get off to a hot start. There are same big games early on that are must wins and would really prove that we are a top team in the state. The CIAC moved us up to Division 2 this year, but our goals of conference and state championships are the same.”
What are your personal goals regarding your stats as the starting goaltender, and team captain?
“I want to do everything I can in order to help my team come out on top. I definitely want to keep my goals allowed average below 2 since last year it was 1.8 and I am trying to build off that.”
What is the most important game of the season? When should the Eagles Faithful pack the rink and why?
“We have a couple big home games that we would love to see a lot of people at. The Newington Home game on 1/26 is a big one as well as the last home game against Conard on 2/16. These are huge games that we need the enthusiasm from the fans at.”
How many guys from last year's team did you lose, and how many rookies are you gaining? What should the final roster size be and how will this affect your team’s performance throughout the season?
“We lost only about 5 players last year, and we will be gaining a few good players to have around 31 players on the team, where only about 21 get dressed for Varsity so everyone will have to compete with the guy next to them every time they hit the ice.”
Who are the players to watch this year? Any breakout seasons looming?
“Trevor Piecewicz, Aaron Cholewa, Jack Healy to name a couple are going to have a huge impact on the season. Look for a breakout season from Riordan Mertens and Chase Millen.”
What have you been doing in the offseason to stay in shape?
“The team gets together 3 times a week to work out together during the off season. Not only that but I try to eat as well as possible and go to my personal gym. Not only that, but I went on the ice at least once a week to tune up my skills.”
Scale of 1 to 10. How ready are you for the upcoming season. Its senior year, the final year of your high school athletics career.
In conclusion, it is clear the expectations are high and Jake Peckrul is confident in his fellow teammates, as well as himself. To all Eagles fans, be ready! These guys are coming!
By: Raul Rodriguez
The boys varsity soccer season is coming to an end and with it comes the beginning of the state championship. As the last chance to win states for many seniors approaches, I asked seniors on the Wethersfield boys varsity team how they plan to get ready for the tough road ahead of them.
Jimmy Errickson said, “I want to work on my touch so that I can get into better positions to score goals and get assists.”
Luke Johnson said, “I want to work on my finishing so I can score more goals.”
Everyone is trying to improve themselves but no matter what everyone is working on they all share the same goal, to win states.
If you can please support the Wethersfield boys varsity soccer team when they compete on Tuesday, November 6th.
By Chelsea Pinchera
On May 10, 2017, the Wethersfield Varsity Boys Baseball team took to Dunkin Donuts Park in Hartford, CT to face Southington, where they lost 8-6. Dunkin Donuts Park is the brand new home of the minor league baseball team, The Yard Goats and holds many home games throughout the Spring-Summer Season.
Written, edited, and produced by Wethersfield High School students, covering all news and events.