MCHS Powerlifting Team

By Chazz Jacks

The MCHS powerlifting team has been on a roll this season, for the boys side placing first at both meets so far this season (Joplin High School and Glendale) and the girls getting third (Joplin High School) and first (Glendale). I’m here to tell you what makes this team so dominant.

Meet the Team

Boys

On the boys side of this team there are 26 males (Kolton Blue, Sampson Boles, Arturo Morales,  Eric Munoz ,Jaw Soe, Michael Williams, Trent Alik Kaiden Campbell, Junior Eliam, Bailey Lewis, Jesus Mendoza, Orvill Pitts, Bradley Saylor, Mark Clements, Zach Hinton, Chazz Jacks, Jonathan Lingo, Jared Mora, Levi Neale, Jorge Ramirez, Alexis Sanchez, Nine Tu, Raider Blue, Jaxen Campbell, Jordan Saylor, Connor Yang) every one of these lifters are unique in there own way such as Connor Yang being able to pull a 325 dead lift at only 103 body weight as a freshman, Kaiden Campell squatting 600 pounds as a junior, Sampson Boles squat cleaning 260 at the 145 lb class, and Jesuz Mendoza benching 225 at 168 as a first year power lifter, which is insane.

Girls

On the girl’s side there are 7 (Jackie Grider,  Emily Thornton, Nicole Estrada, Ebenee Munoz, Zoe Thornton, Kylan Horton-Sherman, Reagan Myrick). Led by Grider, and Thorton (Thorton a multiple state champion). The girl’s side is small in numbers but big in heart and strength.

Image result for mcdonald county high school powerlifting team
2017-2018 squad takes 2nd at State

What Makes this Team Different

I spoke to the head coach of the power lifting team (Coach McCullough) about what makes this year’s team different and special from his past teams, and he said that this year’s team is very different. From lots of heavyweight lifters to more lightweight-middleweight athletes, McCullough is very impressed with the teams success with this new style and hopefully this team continues to impress.

Over the past 4 years of competing, the team has gotten 10 team awards with an average of 4 meets a season. But there is still something missing from the awards, a first place at state. They have gotten very close over the years, bu they haven’t had enough people. McCullough states, “It’s a numbers game.”

The team needs just a few more people to win state from 35-45 athletes. The closest was 2018 where they placed 2nd but fell short because they didn’t have enough athletes. Hopefully this years squad gets gold March 7th at Glendale with this new type of personal from lots of 200 lb-250 athletes to more 125-175 lifters.

2020 NBA All-Star Weekend

By Cayden Westgate

NBA All-Star weekend is right around the corner. Competitions like the three point contest, slam dunk contest, and the skills challenge, and following those events is the famous All-Star game. This year again, the two captains will be Lebron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo.

3-Point Contest Participants

  1. Davis Bertans, Washington Wizards power forward. Shooting 43.1% from three
  2. Devonte’ Graham, Charlotte Hornets point guard. Shooting 35.8% from three.
  3. Joe Harris, Brooklyn Nets small forward. Shooting 42.2% from three.
  4. Buddy Hield, Sacramento Kings shooting guard. Shooting 41% percent from three.
  5. Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls point guard/shooting guard. Shooting 37.6% from three.
  6. Damian Lillard, Portland Trailblazers point guard. Shooting 39.8% from three, but was replaced because of an injury by Devin Booker, Phoenix Suns shooting guard shooting 35% from three.
  7. Duncan Robinson, Miami Heats small forward/shooting guard. Shooting 43.9% from three.
  8. Trae Young, Atlanta Hawks point guard. Shooting 37.3% from three.

Buddy Hield won this contest but it was not very easy.

Slam Dunk Contest Participants

  1. Pat Connaughton, Milwakuee Bucks small forward/shooting guard.
  2. Aaron Gordon, Orlando Magics small forward/power forward.
  3. Dwight Howard, Los Angeles Lakers power forward/center.
  4. Derrick Jones Jr., Miami Heats Small Forward/Power forward.

The outcome of this contest was very debatable

Skills Challenge Participants

  1. Derrick Rose, Detroit Pistons point guard.
  2. Patrick Beverly, Los Angeles Clippers point guard.
  3. Bam Adebayo, Miami Heats power forward/center.
  4. Pascal Siakam, Toronto Raptors power forward.
  5. Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics small forward/powerforward.
  6. Domantas Sabonis, Indiana Pacers power forward/center.
  7. Spencer Dinwiddie, Broklyn Nets guard.
  8. Khris Middleton, Milwaukee Bucks guard.

All-Star Game

Team Lebron:

  • Lebron James- captain
  • Anthony Davis- forward-center
  • James Harden-guard
  • Kawhi Leonard-forward
  • Luka Doncic-forward-guard
  • Damian Lillard but replaced by Devin Booker-guard
  • Chris Paul-guard
  • Nikola Jokic-center
  • Ben Simmons-guard-forward
  • Jayson Tatum-forward-guard
  • Domantas Sabonis-forward-center
  • Russell Westbrook-guard

Team Giannis:

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo-forward
  • Joel Embiid-center-forward
  • Pascal Siakam-forward
  • Kemba Walker-guard
  • Trae Young-guard
  • Bam Adebayo-center-forward
  • Brandon Ingram-forward
  • Jimmy Butler-forward
  • Rudy Gobert-center
  • Donovan Mitchell-guard
  • Kyle Lowry-guard
  • Khris Middleton-forward

New Format to Honor Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gigi

Each of the four quarters will stand on their own and the fourth quarter won’t even have a clock. All to spice up the competition, add some intrigue, honor the memory of the late Kobe Bryant and most of all, get folks talking about it beyond the buzzer. The uniforms for Team LeBron and Team Giannis will be 24 and 2, representing the numbers that Kobe wore with the Lakers and his daughter Gigi wore for her travel team. The shot clock will illuminate when it hits 24 and 8, representing both jersey numbers worn by Kobe with the Lakers.

Mean Girls in Trouble?

By Jacob Winkler

This April, Mean Girls will celebrate its two year anniversary on Broadway. Two years ago, the musical based on the cult-classic Tina Fey movie of the same name, opened at the August Wilson Theater in NYC after an Off-Broadway try-out in Washington D.C six months prior. The musical was nominated for multiple awards, including twelve Tony Awards, nine Drama Desk awards, two Drama League Awards, six Outer Critics Circle Awards, and three Chita Rivera Awards for Dance and Choreography. Out of these thirty two nominations, the production only won three (Drama Desk’s Outstanding Book of a Musical Award, Outer Critics Circle’s Outstanding Book of a Musical Award(s), and Chita Rivera’s Outstanding Ensemble in a Broadway Show Award); it is also important to know that several of these award nominations were for best actor/actress and not for the show itself.

The Mean Girls marquee of the August Wilson Theater

Many notable Broadway performers were in the show, including Kerry Butler as Mrs. Heron/Mrs. George/Ms. Norbury, Grey Hensen as Damien, Kate Rockwell as Karen Smith, Ashley Park as Gretchen Wieners, Taylor Louderman as Regina, Erika Henningsen as Cady, Kyle Selig as Aaron Samuels, and Barrett Wilbert Weed as Janis. The musical is very successful, and is adored by many in the musical theater “fandom”, primarily for its cast; or should I say original cast?

All of the cast members I previously mentioned have all left the show and been replaced. While Butler, Park, and Louderman left a while ago, in the span of only a few weeks, Hensen, Rockwell, Henningsen, and Weed all departed from the production, or were announced to be leaving soon. Even Butler’s successor, Jennifer Simard, left the show recently. While most of the cast replacements were generally neutral (Chad Burris soon to replace Hensen, Olivia Kaufmann to soon replace Weed, Catherine Brunell replacing Simard, Krystina Alabado as Gretchen Weiners, and Renee Rapp replacing Louderman), other cast decisions haven’t been as well received, or are somewhat questioned.

Cameron Dallas as Aaron Samuels performing alongside Erika Henningsen as Cady Heron

Social media celebrity Cameron Dallas recently played Aaron Samuels for a four week engagement, temporarily replacing Selig during his leave of absence. To put it simply, Dallas’s run was not well received…at all. Several critics stated that Dallas’s performance was very lackluster and unprofessional, saying he had poor stage presence, couldn’t sing properly, and butchered the dialogue (some saying he sounded as if he was reading directly off of a teleprompter). One person even claimed that his performance made the audience visibly uncomfortable.

Singer, song-writer, and actress Sabrina Carpenter

Uprising singer and actress, Sabrina Carpenter, whom is known for her work on the Disney television shows Girl Meets World, Sofia the First, and the Netflix original movie Tall Girl, will go-on to replace Erika Henningsen as Cady Heron this March (Henningsen played her final performance in the show on February 22nd). Carpenter’s performance could make or break the show. While Carpenter has lots of acting and singing experience, and multiple fans that could buy tickets for the show just to see her, she hasn’t had experience in theater (to my knowledge), or performing on Broadway for that matter. I’m sure that with the credentials she has, she’ll do fine; but television and movie acting is much different than musical theater, and Carpenter might be more cut-out for the screen and not the stage.

Promotional footage of Kate Rockwell as Karen Smith

Another replacement announced was Laura Leigh Turner replacing Rockwell as Karen Smith. Turner has received massive backlash from Mean Girls fans for following multiple right-wing politicians on Twitter, and supporting many political figures seen as sexist and homophobic. Many people see this as a slap to the face for Mean Girls as a whole, for it is celebrated for being a feminist movie; and that casting an actress who supports people as i mentioned earlier isn’t right.

The original Broadway cast from left to right: Erika Henningsen, Kyle Selig, Kate Rockwell, Rick Younger, Barrett Wilbert Weed, Kerry Butler, Cheech Manohar, Ashley Park, Grey Hensen, and Taylor Lounderman

The reason I state these cast changes as a problem to the show is very simple: ticket sales. Ticket sales and profit is one of the leading factors to a Broadway show’s life. If a show doesn’t collect a certain amount of money by a certain time, or sell enough tickets, the show must close. Sometimes the thing that can draw in, or even “scare” away, audiences and fans is a show’s cast. Now, Dallas has already ended his run and Selig returned, Henningsen, Weed, Rockwell, and Hensen are all about to leave, and the controversial Turner and seemingly neutral Carpenter about to join. While replacements like Rapp and Alabado were well received, only time will tell how the others perform. If they do well, the show will most-likely go on, but if they founder, the curtains may close on Mean Girls.

The Ladies of Jazz Music

By Jacob Winkler

Jazz music has been a staple of American and world culture for years. While there are lots of male jazz-artists, there are also several very talented female-singers in the field of jazz music. Ella Fitzgerald, Eva Cassidy, Billie Holiday, Aretha Franklin, and Etta Jones are some of the best and most well-known female, and over-all, jazz artists from the 20th century (which is when their careers began and/or lasted). I’m going to talk about these five jazz legends and give a run-down of their careers. 

Ella Fitzgerald (1917-1996)

(Fitzgerald pictured in the 1950s/1960s)

Ella Fitzgerald is one of the most recognized and well known singers in music history. Fitzgerald, born in Newport New, VA in 1917, performed at Amateur Nights at the Apollo Theater in NYC as a singer, and won first place. One of her earliest hits was a jazzy version of the children’s nursery rhyme “A-Tisket, A-Tasket”, followed by a slew of hits released through-out her career, such as “Summertime”, “Dream a Little Dream of Me”, “Cheek to Cheek”, “How High The Moon”, “Someone To Watch Over Me”, and “Blue Skies”. She sadly passed away at her home in 1996 due to a stroke, and was buried in Los Angeles after a private funeral.

 Eva Cassidy (1963-1996)

(Cassidy pictured in 1988)

Eva Cassidy was a guitarist, pianist, and singer from Maryland. Known outside of the DC/Maryland area through-out her life, she didn’t rise to stardom during her lifetime, she didn’t release a chart topping album or a platinum selling single in the span of her life-time. She simply sang for her community. She sang from her heart. Eva unfortunately developed and soon died from cancer in November of 1996, at her family’s home in Maryland. After her death, her first album of previously recorded material, was released in September of 1997. Titled Eva by Heart, the album was positively received, but a compilation album of songs recorded by Eva, released in 1998 and titled Songbird, was a hit. From then on, several albums of previously recorded and unreleased material from Cassidy (including covers of hits like Time After Time, Somewhere Over The Rainbow, Kathy’s Song, Imagine, and Coat of Many Colors) would be released, cementing Eva as a jazz legend. 

Billie Holiday (1915-1959)

(Holiday pictured in 1957, laying down a track at a New York City recording studio)

For nearly thirty years, Billie Holiday entertained the world with her jazz music. Her career might not have lasted as long as the other women on this lust, but she still cemented herself as an amazing singer and jazz artist. Billie is known for hits such as “Strange Fruit”, “Blue Moon”, and “I Cover the Waterfront”. She unfortunately passed away due to pulmonary edema and heart failure in 1959, cutting her musical career far to short.

Aretha Franklin (1942-2018)

(Franklin photographed by Michael Ochs in the 1950s/1960s)

Aretha Franklin is arguably one of the most well known singers of all time. She has turned out multiple hit singles and albums over the span of her more than sixty-year career. Several songs from her repertoire include “Call Me”, “Jump to It”, “Freeway of Love”, “Respect”, and “(You Make Me Feel Like a) Natural Woman”. On August 13, 2018, she was reported to be gravely ill, and she died at her home three days later. A memorial service was held another three days later, with celebrities such as Ariana Grande, Queen Latifah, Stevie Wonder, and Gladys Knight in attendance.

Etta Jones (1928-2001)

(Jones pictured on the cover of her 1995 album, At Last)

South Carolina native, Etta Jones, recorded many hits over the span of her over 50 year career, including songs like “Don’t Go to Strangers”, “Save Your Love for Me”, and a cover of “At Last”. Jones has not only turned out amazing material on her own, she has also worked with legends such as Houston Preston, Buddy Johnson, and Leonard Feather. Jones received three Grammy nominations for three of her albums “My Buddy” (1998; dedicated to Buddy Johnson), “Save Your Love For Me (1981) and “Don’t Go to Strangers” (1960), the latter being inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2008. She passed away at the age of 72 in New York.

There are many more influential, legendary, and exceptionally talented jazz artists, both male and female; but I had to narrow it down to some of my personal favorites. Jazz is a very important piece to the America-Music puzzle, and it plays a big role in musical culture and the culture of the twentieth-century as-a-whole. There are many people with varying opinions on jazz music, but I’m sure that everyone can agree that these five singers are some of the best artists of the jazz genre. 

Student Spotlight: Rony Lopez

By Avoleen Joseph

If you look around our school, and even our whole county, there is a lot of diversity. There are people from all around the world that come to McDonald County, and even some, you don’t expect them to be from another country or state. 

For example, Rony Lopez, a freshman from Noel, is a student who came to America from Guatemala when he was in fourth grade. When he arrived at Noel, he didn’t really understand much of anything, considering he was from another country. His ability to speak and interact with other students were limited because he couldn’t understand English. Of course, some of the students who spoke Spanish were able to speak with him. 

“It was pretty easy to adapt, because I learned English pretty quick,” he had stated. 

His response to the question ‘Did you have a hard time making friends?’ was, “Nah, making friends was easy. The first week, I made, like four friends,” he bragged. 

He says that he doesn’t really miss his country. 

“I kinda don’t because it’s not as clean as the United States. It’s not very safe, either. The only reason I miss it is because I can’t see my grandpa anymore.” 

He states that going from not knowing English to becoming super smart “feels good because now, I can understand what the teachers are teaching and I can learn from it.” He also added: “I don’t consider myself super smart, but I always try to do better than most of the kids in the class.”

Our Improved Weight Room

By Chazz Jacks

Well, if you’re in weights here at MCHS, you’ve probably seen or heard  the new upgrades that have happened in our weight room. First from what I remember, the first major upgrade was the TV with the good speaker. Next was the stretch band and weight belt holders which was nice before that we just put them all in a locker. Then we got some Olympic bars, which I loved and other people who are good at clean. Then we went from old school clips to these Rogue Fitness Collars. More and more good upgrades kept happening freshman year.

Then we got three new squat racks, two on each on so six in total plus four pull up bars. Now we have nine squat racks and four pull up bars. Can’t wait to see what new improvements the weight room has in the upcoming future.

Students thoughts of the weight room upgrades

“My favorite weight room upgrade is probably the new clips or olympic bars because its not as time consuming as the old clips and old bars. The old clips were rusty and were very hard to get on. The olympic bars are nice for cleaning, with free bar rotation and doesn’t grind.”

Danny Grider (Sophomore)

“I like the room we have, more racks for more people, better equipment so we don’t get hurt”

Jacob Gordon (Freshman)

“Probably the squat racks we got, plus they came with more pull up bars. More space in there, easier to set up for squats just a newer and cleaner look.”

Arturo Morales (Senior)

“Squat racks, there’s so much more room, more racks, easier to lift, more people can lift… it’s beautiful.”

Jackson Clarkson (Junior)

Wash Your hands

By Cheyenne Scates

When we are sick, we all know the actions we must take keep others from also getting sick. Covering your coughs and sneezes, cleaning the surfaces you have touched, and just staying home when you are sick are all things that you can do, but the biggest thing that you can do is wash your hands and wash them properly.

Wash your hands.
(Image taken from Pixabay.com)

Washing your hands is not difficult, but many people cut the time short or think that it will be okay if they don’t use soap THIS TIME. The proper way to wash your hands is with water that is as warm as your hands can stand it, USE SOAP, and scrub for around 20 seconds, getting under nails, between fingers, and up the arms before rinsing. If you do this, you will feel so much cleaner AND so much happier.

You don’t want these things.
(Image taken from Pixabay.com)

So, the next time you feel like washing your hands, make sure you do it correctly. Use warm water (as warm as you can stand it), use soap and scrub in crevices for 20 seconds, rinse and use your towel to dry your hands. Wash your hands, and you knock down your chances of getting sick or other people sick.

High School Rodeo to Pro Rodeo

By Alexis Bishop and Ashlyn Shumate

Growing up in rodeo community meant the world to me. I got to meet some of the best cowboys/cowgirls in the world. Rodeo is a sport that got started by the practice of herding cattle in Spain, Mexico, later on in South America, the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and the Philippines. Rodeo is the Spanish meaning for roundup. It is hard to find when the first rodeo in America was. Most of what’s in today’s rodeo came from Prescott’s rodeo in 1888.

Image result for prescott rodeo 1884 pictures"

In the sport of rodeo there is one thing all cowboys/cowgirls wait for which is the NFR. The NFR is ten days of rodeo in Las Vegas. Most cowboys want to go from high school rodeo to the PRCA. To apply to be a member of the PRCA you must obtain a pro card. You also must have earned at least $1000 at a PRCA sanctioned rodeo. There is no time limit to “fill” your PRCA permit. Money won under a permit card will only go towards circuit standings. The money you earn in a season with your PRCA membership goes towards your world standings. Most cowboys in the PRCA make around $136,419 to $436,479. More than 43 million people are fans of the PRCA. 

Going from high school rodeo to pro is a big change. High school rodeo you normally stay in your state and compete against others in your state. In pro rodeo you compete against the best cowboys/cowgirls in the word. While you do have a finals in high school rodeo, they are nothing like going to the NFR. While the change from high school rodeo to pro rodeo might be difficult, it is also a good way to meet new people and make new friends. People come from all around the world to compete in pro rodeo. If you ask anyone in pro rodeo they would tell you that they love the community and that rodeo is something they love to do. That being said rodeo isn’t just a sport it’s a passion.