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Onto the Final Four

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The Lady Chiefs softball team faced off against Lee’s Summit West Thursday night in the Class 5 Quarterfinal game. The Lady Chiefs beat the Titans 11-1 and celebrated as they knew they were headed to the Class 5 final four.

The Lady Chiefs are set to face Lee’s Summit North, Saturday, October 24th, at 2 p.m. The Chiefs will travel to Lee’s Summit North and play to advance to the Championship game, October 29th, in Springfield.

The Lady Chiefs come in with a record of 24 wins and 3 losses. The Lady Broncos come into the game with 27 wins and 3 losses. They will face off Saturday for the first time this year and the Chiefs are ready to put up a fight.

“I’m very excited to see what we can do Saturday. It’s going to be good competition but I know we can do it,” Junior, Megan Dancey said.

More Than a Game of Pitch and Catch

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  Under the brightness of the stadium lights, the pitcher can make out her catcher’s hand signal.

  The bases are loaded, it’s the last inning, and there’s a full count.

  The Kickapoo Chiefs are up by one.

  The catcher positions herself and the pitcher takes a deep breath, then starts her stride.

  She extends her leg and brings around her arm to throw her change-up. As the ball moves throughout the air, the catcher’s eyes carefully watch it.

  The batter swings too early and the softball lands into the webbing of catchers mitt. The Lady Chiefs run together as the crowd erupts into cheer. They won the game.

  The relationship between a pitcher and a catcher is like no other on a team.

  The pitcher relies on their catcher to receive their pitches and make the key plays in a game, including throwing down, retrieving most of the bunts, and tagging people out at home plate.

  The catcher relies on their pitcher to trust her throughout the season, throw the pitches according to her hand signal, and be there to back her up when a runner is coming home.

  When softball pitchers seniors, Ellie Facklam and Jaden LaBarge teamed up with catchers, junior, Kate Pierce and sophomore, Callie Muldoon, it made for a pretty great game of “This or That.” Team number one was Ellie and Kate facing off against team number two,  Jaden and Callie.

  The rules were simple. When given a “This or That” question, Kate and Callie had to match the answers to what they think their pitchers were going to say. In round two, Ellie and Jaden had to match what they thought their catchers were going to say.

  Some questions were softball related and some were just for fun and good laughs.

  In round one, catchers Kate and Callie are trying to match their answers to Ellie and Jaden’s.

  In round two, pitchers Ellie and Jaden are trying to match their answers to Kate and Callie.

  Here were the questions and which team got them right:

 

Round One-

Ellie’s Answers:

Batting or fielding?

Ellie: Batting

Day or night?

Ellie: Night

Dogs or cats?

Ellie: Dogs

Home or away games?

Ellie: Home

Bunting or swinging?

Ellie: Swinging

 

Kate’s Answers:

Batting or fielding?

Kate: Batting

Day or night?

Kate: Day

Dogs or cats?

Kate: Dogs

Home or away games?

Kate: Home

Bunting or swinging?

Kate: Swinging

 

Callie’s Answers:

Batting or fielding?
Callie: Batting

Day or night?

Callie: Night

Dogs or cats?

Callie: Dogs

Home or away games?

Callie: Away

Bunting or swinging?

Callie: Swinging

 

Jaden’s Answers:

Batting or fielding?

Jaden: Batting

Day or night?

Jaden: Night

Dogs or cats?

Jaden: Dogs

Home or away games?

Jaden: Home

Bunting or swinging?

Jaden: Swinging

 

Round Two-

Ellie’s Answers:

Fruits or vegetables?

Ellie: Fruits

Pop or country music?

Ellie: Pop

Fly or ground balls?

Ellie: Fly

Math or English?

Ellie: Math

Coffee or Soda?

Ellie: Coffee

Kate’s Answers:

Fruits or vegetables?

Kate: Fruits

Pop or country music?

Kate: Country

Fly or ground balls?

Kate: Fly

Math or English?

Kate: Math

Coffee or Soda?

Kate: Coffee

 

Callie’s Answers:

Fruits or vegetables?

Callie: Vegetables

Pop or country music?

Callie: Country

Fly or ground balls?

Callie: Fly

Math or English?

Callie: Math

Coffee or Soda?

Callie: Coffee

 

Jaden’s Answers:

Fruits or vegetables?

Jaden: Fruits

Pop or country music?

Jaden: Country

Fly or ground balls?
Jaden: Fly

Math or English?

Jaden: English

Coffee or Soda?

Jaden: Coffee

  After playing the game, all four softball girls had a small interview, and here is what they had to say:

 Ellie Facklam: Softball Pitcher

  How long have you been playing for Kickapoo’s softball team?

  “This is my fourth year playing for Kickapoo.”

  What are your opinions on Kate?

  “The team would not be the same without Kate. She is the team comedian and one of the hardest workers on the team.”

  Out of all the positions, why do you pitch?

  “I pitch because I like to be in control of the game and it is a high action position.”

  What has been your favorite part of playing for Kickapoo?

  “My favorite part about Kickapoo is getting the opportunity to compete and play alongside my best friends.”

  What are your thoughts on this season so far?

  “We have started the season off very well, and we hope to continue our success for the rest of the season.”

Jaden LaBarge: Softball Pitcher

  How long have you been playing for Kickapoo’s softball team?

  “This is my second year playing at Kickapoo.”

  What are your opinions on Callie?

  “Callie is one of my best friends and I love having her behind the plate because she knows me, and we connect so well.”

  Out of all the positions, why do you pitch?

  “I started pitching from a coach telling me I would be a good pitcher. I just stuck with it until now because I am not one to quit things, and I also love being a part of every play.”

  What has been your favorite part of playing for Kickapoo?

  “My favorite part of playing for Kickapoo is playing with my great teammates and playing for amazing coaches who have pushed me and made me the player I am today”

  What are your thoughts on this season so far?

  “So far this season is going really well. I am kinda sad that because of COVID a couple of our really good tournaments got cancelled, but I am just glad we have a season as of right now.”

Kate Pierce: Softball Catcher

  How long have you been playing for Kickapoo’s softball team?

  “I have been playing Kickapoo Softball for 3 years.”

  What are your opinions on Ellie?

  “Ellie is one of the best pitchers/players that I know. Ellie always keeps me laughing and having a good time during practices and games. She is my best friend and I can’t imagine softball and life without her.”

  Out of all the positions, why do you catch?

  “I catch because I love getting the opportunity to be involved in every play on the field. Catching allows me to be the coach on the field and I love getting to be a leader for my team.”

  What has been your favorite part of playing for Kickapoo?

  “My favorite part about playing for Kicapoo is getting able to play with the most amazing coaches and teammates. My teammates are truly my best friends and we always have so much fun together when we play.”

    What are your thoughts on this season so far?

  “So far, we are having a really great season, and I can’t wait to see where our season takes us.”

Callie Muldoon: Softball Catcher

  How long have you been playing for Kickapoo’s softball team?

  “I have been playing at Kickapoo for 2 years now.”

  What are your opinions on Jaden?

  I think that Jaden is such a hard worker, loves to win, and is in love with the game. She always has fun when she’s playing and makes the most out of every game, and I’m proud to call her one of my best friends.”

  Out of all the positions, why do you catch?

  “I was put into catching when I was 12 because my coach thought I would be good at it, and I’ve loved it ever since!”

  What has been your favorite part of playing for Kickapoo?

  “My favorite part about playing for Kickapoo has been being able to meet some of my best friends on the team and having such amazing coaches that help me become a better player and person everyday.”

  What are your thoughts on this season so far?

  “I think that this season we are gonna go to state! We have such an amazing group of girls that are so talented and I think that if all of us set our minds on winning each game at night, we are going to be unstoppable! We have two amazing pitchers and great seniors that will lead us there!”

  A pitcher and catcher’s relationship is what completes the team. Ellie, Jaden, Kate, and Callie clearly support each other extremely well.

  They all have a deep bond and a close friendship. Along with the other girls who play their positions, Kickapoo’s softball team is a close family.  

  If you want to support these girls plus the rest of Kickapoo’s softball team, go show them some love at their games.

  Go Chiefs!

Taking Home the Ozark Conference Plaque

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Photo by: Cayden Danzer

Kickapoo Girls’ Tennis hold the Ozark Conference Championship plaque.

Just another plaque that’s going to be added to the shelf.

The Lady Chiefs took the Ozark Conference championship October 1st, as they beat one of the inner-city rivals, Springfield Catholic. Going into the conference tournament, Kickapoo was 7-2 and came out 11-2.

The Lady Chiefs got the victory 5-1 against Central in round one of the tournament and advanced to the next round against Glendale in which they won 5-0. Heading into the third round against Waynesville, the Lady Chiefs came ready to rally and won 5-0. As the Chiefs advanced they ended up playing the Irish of Springfield Catholic in the championship. The hard fought battle between both schools fell in the favor of the Chiefs.

“I’m glad we could face Catholic because they always are really competitive. It’s also really exciting that we were able to win conference because I feel like we deserve it. We have put in so much time and work to get to this point,” sophomore, Brynley Brotherton said.

Softball District Champions

Kickapoo’s Varsity Softball team wins the District 6 Championship for the second consecutive year

Tonight Kickpoo’s Varsity Softball team competed against Carthage at Republic High School. The team, which is comprised of 14 students, won the game with a final score of 3-2. It was a close game according to Senior Mckenna Fink, “It was close but Ellie [Facklam] pitched really well and hit a two-run home run which sent us over the top”. This victory makes them the district champions for two consecutive years.

This week, on October 13th, they played against Nixa, beating them with a final score of 7-5. That win allowed them to move forward in competition to win against Carthage tonight.

This year, district sectionals were cut out of the game timeline due to Covid-19. Therefore the Lady Chiefs will go straight from winning districts to Quarterfinals.

Now they will move on to play at home for the upcoming Quarterfinals against Lee’s Summit West on October 22. If they win that game too, they will continue to the Final Four which will take place on the 29th of October at Killian Sports Complex.

Last year they won districts, but this year in doing so again, they set an expectation for future success in the future. Our Lady Chiefs have performed with talent and strength so far this season, thanks to the hard work of the players and supporting staff and coaches. Wish them luck in Quarterfinals! Go Chiefs!

Trouble With Stunts

     For the past seven months, cheerleading practice has been held every week, as the team works hard to perfect modified and new cheers and dances. Junior Varsity practice is held 3pm to 4:30pm every Monday, while Varsity practices are Fridays from 3pm to 4:30pm.

     During practices, the team reviews and rehearses cheers and dances to perform on the sidelines of games. They are unable to perform many of their popular cheers and stunts, due to state guidelines governing the Coronavirus, including social distancing and CDC (Center for Disease Control) guidelines.

     “I’m really sad we’re unable to stunt, stunting is my favorite part of cheer,” said Sophomore Amber Kwon.

     While they are not allowed to perform in close-contact with one another, they have adapted new ways to encourage school spirit during games. With new cheers, dances, and overall pep, they have kept spirits up during difficult times.

     “I totally get why we aren’t allowed to stunt. While stunting, we’re very close to each other, so spreading Corona between the people in the stunt groups would be very easy,” Kwon continued.

    While the team cannot attend any competitions this year, they have committed to perfecting their cheers, and improving at every opportunity. They strive for better cheers, sharper motions, and more energy at every practice and game.

 

Double Whammy

This past month, boys varsity soccer has beat Glendale varsity soccer not once, but two times. Kickapoo received first place after playing against the falcons in their second to last game of the Kickapoo Shootout Friday, October 2nd.

Photo Courtesy of Josie Eiffert

“It felt amazing to win the Kickapoo Shootout for the first time since I’ve been at Kickapoo, especially against Glendale,” senior Spencer Sharpe said.

A few days following Kickapoo’s win in the Shootout, they had another win against Glendale on Wednesday, October 7th. The game ended with a one-point lead in overtime creating a very exciting game. With a final score of 5-4, the Kickapoo boys soccer team finally got to take home the Southside Showdown trophy after years of it being locked up at Glendale High School.

“It was exciting to come back from 1-4 and win in overtime. Celebrating our win was a cool feeling that not everyone gets to experience,” junior Owen Bowler said.

 

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Girls Golf

The Lady Chiefs golf team’s season came to an end on Monday, October 12. The team had a great season and with high hopes. Unfortunately, their season came to a halt at the district tournament with none of the team proceeding on. The team this year consists of three Freshman, three Sophomores, seven Juniors, and three seniors. Team captain Lilli Bladner when asked about the season said the girls had a good season and that “It definitely felt shorter than usual, and we have some restrictions with COVID, but overall I was glad the be with all the girls again this year”. While the girl’s golf season came to an earlier than expected end the Lady Chiefs did a great job under tough circumstances.

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Homecoming Week 2020

With a whole year full of surprises and cancellations, our Kickapoo Cabinet has pulled together to make this year’s homecoming one for the books. While we are not allowed to hold a dance, however, the homecoming court will still walk the field at the game against Hillcrest this Friday. Starting the Monday prior to the football game; a spirit week will still be held. Monday, October 19 will be Marvel Monday, where students can dress like their favorite superhero. Tuesday will then be Tackle Tuesday, giving students the opportunity to represent their favorite sports team. Wednesday’s virtual spirit day will be Wear your Ribbon Wednesday, where students can post a selfie wearing a ribbon and tag @kpoocabinet on Instagram for a chance for their picture to be featured on the cabinets stories. Thursday is Throwback Thursday, or decades day, where students will show off styles from a different decade. Lastly, Friday will be Fight Against Cancer Friday or Pink Out, where students will wear pink in support of the ongoing fight against breast cancer.

Friday evening is when homecoming really begins. Starting at 5:30 pm Kickapoo Cabinet will be holding a homecoming parade featuring floats from multiple different clubs around the school, all students and parents attending the game must be there by 5:30 otherwise they will not be allowed entrance. Spectators are also required to stay by their cars during the parade. Then after the 15-minute parade through the parking lot, a tailgate will be held starting at 6:00, where the student council will be handing out hotdogs to all students attending the game. This will also be in the parking lot. Then at 7:00 will be our 2020 homecoming game’s kickoff. While this homecoming is very different from those past our Cabinet has pulled together to make it truly great. Our homecoming court will still walk the fields at half time and our varsity football team will still have the support of our student body, even if it is through masks.

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Southside Rivalry

Southside+Rivalry

This Friday the boy’s varsity basketball team will come head to head with Glendale at 7:00 pm.
Kickapoo heads into the game 14-8. Glendale enters into the game 13-9. The matchup history since 2003 comes out at 14 wins for Kickapoo and five wins for Glendale.

Backpacks and purses are subject to search. The student sections will also be separated and monitored before, during, and after the game.
“Glendale has always been our rival and beating them feels different than winning other games,” sophomore Carson Noel said.

Cheering For The Squad

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The cheer team practices a stunt commonly done at tryouts.

   Cheer tryout applications are available in the main office but just signing a paper isn’t all that goes into the cheer applications. Cheer tryout forms are due March 11th and tryouts are on March 23rd through the 26th for Freshman through Juniors.  Tryouts consist of four consecutive days where each day is a new challenge.

   On day one of tryouts, they go over a mixture of different types of stunts. 

    “On the first day they learn a cheer a chant and a dance and then we go over motions jumps tumbling things like that, Cheer coach Audrey Larson said. 

   On the second day of tryouts, they demonstrate there jumping ability.

    “They show us their jumps and there graded on there technique of there jumps and they demonstrate the level of tumbling they have so the harder the skill the more points you get, Coach Larson said. 

   The final two days they wrap the tryouts up with group stunts. 

   “Wednesday and Thursday they do group stunts and that’s when they practice learning the lifts, Coach Larson said. 

   Cheer does not need a set number of people to form a cheer team. It is based on a point system. They don’t always look for the skill they also look for personality. 

    “We really look for the potential we look for really good attitudes and if your willing to work you don’t have to be the best of the best you just have to want to be,” Coach Larson said.

E-sports coming to Kickapoo?

 

Contender finally opened back at the end of January. Which is a E-sports “gym” to be able to train, learn, and compete against others or on their own time. Giving people the opportunity to be able to use high powered equipment that normally would cost thousands of dollars to obtain. With this obviously means that it is a goal for the other schools along with kickapoo to have true teams and tournaments as well too. The big problem though is funding. The cost to rent the space, the whole facilities, on top of the equipment ,etc. The amount it would cost wouldn’t be worth it to be able to have a full fledged team along with competition by the end of the year (3 months away).

   The goal now is to try and have all five other districts to be able to compete all together and against each other. Funding is the biggest thing tho because for the fall league (when it would be starting up) would be $2,400 for the whole school with only two teams JV and Varsity with a MAX amount of people at five. All details aren’t still completely in even though contender is now open they still have failed to respond back to Mrs. Cabbella the sponsor of the E-sports club. 

   Hopefully by the time the next year rolls around we will be able to show our school spirit at a E-sports game cheering on Kickapoo and creating another great rivalry with Glendale within another sport. All that can be done at this point is to wait and see what will become of Kickapoo’s E-sport team. The world of this type of competition is rapidly growing and it’s only a matter of time for more people to make it big by just playing games.

Bowling Club

The bowling club is one of the many events that take place at Kickapoo. Bowling starts after winter break and is a very competitive club. 

Bowling club practices at Andy B’s, starting after winter break. Senior Spencer Robarge is very excited to bowl this year and has been practicing very hard in the offseason. 

“We are getting ready to start and hoping we have a good team coming together. Personally, I had a 300-846 about a month ago” Robarge said. 

A 300 is a perfect score and 900 is a perfect score in three games. He is very excited and has been practicing for bowling by winning national events. 

 

Golden Girls Take On the Sunshine State

The Golden Girls and their happy feet have a busy spring among them. They have lately been practicing for state and nationals, which are competitions that could win them titles. 

   In preparation for competitions, Golden Girls have their normal practices twice a week plus many more added on top of that. Their dances have been professionally choreographed and are cleaned to perfection.    

   The poms team is kicking off the season at Missouri State on January 25th. At this competition, they will compete against local schools with group dances and solo performances.

“My favorite thing about competing with my team is that “we did it” feeling after performing and how hype everything is,” junior Aspen Lance said.

   Golden Girls compete at Nationals in Orlando, Florida, January 31st through February 2nd. At Nationals, the team competes against dance teams from across the country. Since they compete at Disney World, they also get the opportunity to venture throughout the parks while they are there.

   “I mainly look forward to Nationals. We get to have fun but also compete against the best teams in the nation,” senior Acacia Simmons said.

   The poms team competes at State in Kansas City on February 29th. They have the chance to win a state title and compete against teams from all over Missouri. 

   Not only are these girls busy with competitions and practices, they also dance during halftime at each home basketball game and perform around Springfield at events such as Tournament of Champions and Springfield’s Christmas Parade.

   “This is absolutely the busiest time of year when it comes to poms but it all pays off in the end and I make good memories with my teammates,” Simmons said.

   As Golden Girls are quickly approaching competition season, they appreciate all of the student support they can get at games. 

   “We love to hear everyone in the stands cheer for us. It would be awesome to have that same support at competitions, especially Sugar Bears since it’s in Springfield,” Lance said.

Running For Gold

   The Cross Country season has come to an end, but it was something to be proud of. Off season and the grind has started for those that are not seniors. One of the girls Ms. Brown finished 6th out of the whole state as a freshman and she ran really well and she ran the 3rd best time in Kickapoo history. But overall the team finished 15 out of 16 teams. Coach Goddard expressed that he is proud of the team as a whole and stated 

   “I am very proud, even though in the end we wanted to place higher on the ranks but we have room to improve and do better.” Goddard said. 

   The team is on now on off season and ready to get straight to work and work to place better for next year.

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Sports Talks with Nick

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Photo Courtesy of Tribune News service

   This upcoming weekend the local favorite Kansas City Chiefs face off against AFC West rival the Denver Broncos.

   The Chiefs and Broncos have been rivals since 1960. The Chiefs currently lead this rivalry 64-55. 

   This week’s game should have some major excitement and emotion surrounding it as Drew Lock the Broncos new quarterback is coming back to arrowhead in Kansas City where he grew up at. 

   Lock is coming into this game undefeated as an NFL starting quarterback and looks to continue his reign of winning over his childhood favorite team.

   Look so many fades over the middle from Lock to rookie Denver tight end Noah Fant. 

   Also, be sure to watch for reigning MVP Patrick Mahomes to throw for over 300 yards on a struggling Denver secondary.

 

Winter Sports Updates: Winter Guard

 

     Color Guard is an award winning team on a local, regional, and national level. They will be performing along side of the golden arrow band in the annual Christmas Parade held downtown. On December 14th bands, volunteers, and floats will be marching around Park Central Square at two pm. 

This year’s theme is Silver Bells: It’s Christmas Time in the City. The team is directed by Sherri Peterson and choreographed by Haley Davis.

 “The groups have been practicing their routines during 4th block, next semester we will transition to winter guard,” Peterson said.

The team has been preparing for the winter sports assembly on December 16th. 

“Their routines for winter guard are usually around two minutes,” Peterson said. 

As the season approaches, the team hopes to have a successful season after their Emulation team competed in the world championship in Dayton Ohio this year.

 

Soccer Field

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The Kickapoo Chiefs and Lady Chiefs have enjoyed success over the recent years, but not on their home field. Jose Florez Field, home of the soccer Chiefs has been completely renovated. With Primrose Street widened to five lanes in the next year the soccer field that lies next to Primrose had to be moved over 30 yards. The field was supposed to be completed by May of 2018 but in May of 2019 the field it is still under construction. The field was delayed because of they lost the surveying points of the field two times. The survey points make the field at a one degree grade. Also the sod laid on the field was shorted two trucks delaying the field by months. On top of the the irrigation system was not properly done then delaying the construction even more. This past fall season for the boys and spring for the girls all practices and games have been on the football field. Soccer coach Phil Hodge was hoping to be back on the grass field by the fall but had to be on the football field. “In the fall we had practice at 6 in the morning working with football’s schedule and the girls have to share with track. It isn’t ideal but we make it work,” Hodge said.
With all of this happening over the past year and a half the field is near complete. The soccer chiefs will finally be on Jose Florez field in the fall. The field now has a locker room for the Chiefs and Lady Chiefs with the benches connected to the locker room. There are also new bleachers for fans to sit on. Also the goals are not planted in the ground like the old goals were so the players can move them off the field. The field is fenced all around the field and this will hopefully defer people from getting on the field. “Before anyone could get on the field and now with the fencing people can’t. This will keep our field in the best condition and it will be the best before it used to be,” Hodge said. The field is about to be handed over to the school and by the fall the boys will be playing on the new grass field for the first time. “It is an exciting time to be a Chief, I’m really excited for this new facility. I think it’s going to be the nicest in the area,” Hodge said. Now the soccer Chiefs get their home back and look to have a bright future on their new facility.

Varsity Track & Field

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The Varsity Track and Field team has attended two major upper-level meets in the month of April. At the Kansas Relays, an invite only meet held at KU, three athletes placed high enough to earn medals. Senior Ethan Bowers placed 3rd in the 400 Meter Dash. Junior Tayte Kozlowski places 6th in the Triple Jump and 7th in Long Jump, and Senior Kennedy Aurentz placed 2nd in Shot Put. At the SBU Class 4 and 5 meet, held at Southwest Baptist University the girls team placed 2nd overall.
Senior Kennedy Aurentz placed 1st in Shot Put and Discus. Senior Katelyn Clark placed 4th in Javelin with a 13 ft personal record. Juniors Tayte Kozlowski, Mia Thompson, Sophomores Chloe Merced and Imani Robinson placed 1st overall in the 4×200 relay. The boys team did not place overall but many placed individually. Senior Cy Warlick placed 2nd in Discus. Senior Ethan Bowers received 2nd in the 400 Meter Dash. Junior Brady Bauder placed 2nd in the 3,200 Meter Dash. Varsity Track and Field Conference is Wednesday, May 1st.

Feel The Vibrations

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A student in band plays the Marimba.

Drumline: one of the most underrated and mentally tasking sports at school.  The season goes from November to April but competition season doesn’t start until February. Their most recent competition was Saturday at Nixa high school.   The main, intense practices are from November through January but practice never stops even during competition season. Rehearsals are every Tuesday, Thursday, and sometimes on Friday. Practice can go from five to nine or six to nine. At the LPA assembly on February 21st, it was mentioned that drumline was ranked 4th in the United States but this changes constantly due to competitions always happening around the world. Big groups from California and Flordia compete which can knock drumline down a rank. Chase Sullins a member of drumline has been apart of drumline for 5 seasons. This includes Marching band and Winter drumline season each year. Judging in the percussion world is very intense. Last year drumline made prelims and semifinals. “Everything is seen from your feet and the way you play the music. They see super small things and add every decimal point it’s very very hard to make finals,” junior Chase Sullins said. Drumline works very hard on what they do and their schedules can be hectic. It takes a lot of time and energy. “It is a lot of time. It’s a huge time commitment and it cost a lot of money be prepared for the time dedication and money. It’s very hard for me on my schedule. I’m pretty much never home. That’s how it is for all of us,” Sullins said. Although it is a lot of work and a huge commitment, there are the experiences and the adrenaline of being on the floor doing what drumline knows best giving all they can when they hit the competition floor. “My favorite part is probably just my experiences. The experiences are really good like going to competitions and stuff. I’ve had a lot of troubles and a lot of good. It gives you a lot of discipline. The intense drumming is kind of like the military it’s like doing military drills it’s tough,” Sullins said.  Drumline doesn’t get the attention they desire at school. Few people go to their competitions other than band kids. Drumline’s hard work seems to be overlooked when compared to other sports. “I would really like to have more kids come out and support drumline. We usually don’t see a lot of kids other than band kids, we usually just see parents. It would be very inspiring to see more kids out there. There’s always a lot of support for football but not for drumline. That would make us really happy,” Sullins said.

Down the Lanes

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Bowling balls lined up at the bowling alley

  “If you pick up your bowling ball and you’re on the approach and you don’t know what you’re doing you’re in trouble,” sophomore Spencer Robarge said.

  Robarge is a bowler on the varsity bowling team. He’s been bowling for twelve years.

  “I spent so much time in the bowling center that it became second nature for me to be there for twelve-fourteen hours a day,” Robarge said.

  His mom started him bowling at a young age. While his dad would have preferred he play a different sport, he received endless support from his mom, brother, and grandma.

  “They’ve supported me taking me to tournaments all the time and watching me bowl,” Robarge said.

  He started bowling when he was four and soon after he was bowling competitively.

  “It was a lot of fun being really young and bowling, you didn’t really understand what was on only that you try to hit the most pins,” Robarge said.

  Over the years his love for the sport grew along with his knowledge and skill.

  “As I’ve gotten older I’ve realized it’s much more intriguing and much more intricate than I originally thought,” Robarge said.

  For him, bowling was the only sport he’s ever played.

  “I wasn’t fast enough to play basketball I wasn’t big enough to play football I didn’t have enough stamina for something like baseball I was really good at bowling,” Robarge said.

  “Nobody really understood what it was and as they got older, second or third grade, I got a lot of ridicule for it,” Robarge said.

  Another place he’s been able to find support is with his teammates on the lanes.

  “I’ve been on the team with him since a sophomore year but I’ve known him since freshman year,” junior Graham Mortimore said.

  From the beginning, Mortimore admired Robarge’s ability.

  “I remember first watching him and just being in shock about how good he was,” Mortimore said.

  Mortimore not only sees Robarge as a great bowler but also as an uplifting teammate.

  “He always takes the lead and gets up hyped up and gives us tips on how to improve,” he added.

  Growing up playing a nontraditional sport Robarge has been met with a few misconceptions.

  “Bowling is a sport you can do for the rest of your life. Go to Andy B’s on any afternoon and you’ll see older people that have been playing for years,” Robarge said.

  He combats nervousness with calm confidence in his abilities. His goal going in is always to win.

  “In my eyes, my job is to win the tournament, to make sure this kid who thinks he will win doesn’t,” Robarge said.

  He ensures his confidence in his playing through hard work and practice. Robarge spends anywhere from one to twelve hours a day bowling. Either working in the pro shop or bowling, his life is spent in the bowling center.

  “I really don’t like mediocrity if I can win, put the time in I’ve spent the last 60% of my life bowling, I’ve worked for where I’m at and my job is to work to stay where I’m at,” Robarge said.

  He also spends a lot of time studying.

  “It’s almost like school, you may be at school for seven hours but you’re doing school work for more than seven hours a day,” Robarge said.

  One way he stays calm during games is with a hard working and humble mentality.

  “If it doesn’t work out it doesn’t work out, all you can do is prepare better for the next time,” Robarge said.

  Robarge has had above average scores in tournaments in the last few years with the highest possible score being 300.

  “Between 230 and 250 in the last three or four years,” he said.

Robarge reaches for another ball

 He has scored 21 official 300 point games and is close to beating the youth bowling record with only ten more to go in the next four years.

  One of his main career goals is to work with storm bowling. Storm bowling is a leading bowling ball and bowling equipment manufacturer.

  “They’ve known me pretty well the last couple of years I have my foot in the door, they would allow me to go on tour which is my main goal,” Robarge said.

  Robarge has appeared in advertisements for this company within the last two years.

  “I want to work for them and hopefully make their company better than it is. With an already great company it’s a tough task ahead,” Robarge said.

  He is also interested in owning a bowling center when he’s older.

  “I’ve been around it my whole life and I feel like I could really run a center successfully,” Robarge said.

  He wants to combine old and new styles of bowling centers by combining cosmic flashy style bowling centers with more traditional lanes for league bowling.

  “A lot of people only do one or the other and don’t do both and I think that’s where the gap is at,” Robarge said.

  Before he works in the bowling industry Robarge wants to go to college. He wants to attend a college with a good bowling team as well as a business program to help him later on. Through his bowling, he could receive either partial scholarships or even a full ride as some schools have already offered.

  “If I keep on I should be able to get a full ride because I’m not only a good bowler but also a good student. I will have academics as well as athletics,” Robarge said.

  Robarge would also urge people who want to try bowling to come out and try it.

  Throughout his athletic career, Robarge has paid for bowling through fundraising through different companies. In the next few months, he plans to start fixing up and reselling used bowling balls from his own home.

Robarge throws another ball

  “I’m going to buy bowling balls plug them make them look good, and sell them,” Robarge said.

  “I would definitely encourage younger kids to come out and try it and see if you like it,” Robarge said.

Bowling has had an impact on his life and he wants to encourage others to play.

  “A wonderful thing about it is all the great people I’ve met,” he said.

  He is thankful for other athletes he’s helped throughout the years and hopes to spread a love for the sport.

  “I just want others to fall in love with the sport and hopefully grow the sport as a whole,” Robarge said.

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