PrideTime Sports Editor
1. The Business Behind the Bows:
You’ll never catch a cheerleader without a colorful or sparkly bow. Whether it’s on their backpack or in their hair, these are the ultimate Cheer accessory. Typically, our cheerleaders sport a “D.W.” bow, in memory of Coach Kelsey’s father who passed away this year.
2. It’s more than flips and sparkles:
Cheerleaders spend the summer in the weight room building up their strength for the football season. You may catch them in the mini gym on the mats after school hours, but they can also be spotted at a private gym practicing tumbling.
3. Different Roles:
The Flyer- Usually the lightest person, who gets held up by others.
The Base- Seen underneath the flyers, supporting them and holding them up.
The backspot- Just as important as the bases, backspots stand behind and grab the ankles of the flyers to pull them up.
4. Looking Good while Doing Good:
In addition to coordinated outfits and hair, there are many strict rules when it comes to competitions. No long nails, nail polish, or fake nails. In fact, their nails cannot go past their fingertips. Points can be deducted if a bellybutton shows, and of course, cursing on the mat is a big no-no
5. Practices are just as important as serious as games:
With coordinated outfits and themes, the cheer team spends a lot of time team bonding while improving their stunts and routines. Practice can go for as long as 4 hours with tumbling. Expected to be just as loud in practice as they are in games, cheerleaders put their all into everything.
Keep track of the different letters you get and tally them up at the end to see which McMahon cheerleader you are!
With a hard fought match Tuesday, the McMahon Boys Varsity basketball team took a well needed win against the Trinity Catholic Crusaders 51-47.
Coming off of back to back loses last week against Danbury and Staples, the Senators came ready to battle. Senior captain Saikwon Williams who lead the team with 17 points, 10 of those coming in the fourth quarter.
“I feel I could have did a lot better, I’m not usually used to playing like this but I played within the game and how the game was flowing and helped my teammates do whatever I could do” said Williams after the game
In the final three minutes of the fourth quarter, the senators went on a 6-0 run to extend their lead against the crusaders which they were able to maintain until the final buzzer.
McMahon started off the game strong and hungry causing turnovers and and taking a 13-8 into the second quarter. As the crusaders tried to rally and fight back to stay in the game, the senators were able to retaliate and take a three point lead heading into halftime with the score 21-18.
At halftime coach Joseph Laprad gave a pep talk to the team in which he stressed the importance of rebounding and transition defense while also bringing the game to Trinity.
Throughout the third quarter the game went back and forth and both teams giving very little edge to the opposition however McMahon was able to take a five point lead into the final quarter of the game (33-28).
McMahon was able to push through and get the win. After the game Coach Laprad stated “We faced adversity towards the end of the game foul troubles, not making our fast break layups, but once we changed our attitudes and mindsets, we were able to fight through and pull out the win.”
With New Canaan coming up on Friday the senators celebrate their victory but get right back to work at the next two practices.
“We need to improve upon rebounding and our half court off needs a little bit more flow and ball and player movement and really need to get the defense to shift and flex” said Laprad post game.
On February 3rd, the New England Patriots will be taking on the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl 53. This will be the third year in a row that the Patriots play for glory and for the Rams it will be their first super bowl appearance since 2001 where they also lost to the Patriots by a score of 20-17.
Who will Win the big game? Let's dive in.
Why the Patriots Will Win?
The first reason why the Patriots Will win is simply because of the great Belichick-Brady combo. The duo has been to 9 Super Bowls and won five of them. Simply because they've played in so many Super bowls gives them an advantage compared to this super bowl being the first for Mcvay and Goff. Experience is everything.
If Sony Michel continues his dominance the Patriots will certainly have a clearer path to the Coveted Lombardi Trophy. In two playoff games so far, Michel has been bulldozing teams. In the divisional round against the Chargers, he rushed for 129 yards and 3 touchdowns. Against the Chiefs on Championship Sunday, He rushed for 106 yards and 2 touchdowns. So in two games, Michel had 235 yards on the ground and 5 touchdowns. These playoff teams have not had an answer for him.
Clearly the offensive line this playoff run for the Patriots has been pretty close to perfect since they are running the ball so well. Here's something that is even more impressive about the offensive line. Tom Brady has not been sacked once this postseason. If the Patriots want any chance of winning this game, The o-line is going to have to continue being as perfect as possible considering who they are going up against on the D line. The Rams have the reigning defensive player of the year Aaron Donald who had 20 sacks this year and Ndamukong Suh on the d line who are just freaks of nature. The Patriots have to contain them if they want their 6th super bowl title.
Why the Rams will win?
The Rams have one of the most high octane, high scoring offenses in the entire NFL. WIth Jared Goff at the helm and Todd Gurley, Brandin Cooks, and Robert Woods at his disposal, The Rams averaged 32.9 points per game which is good for second best in the entire league. In addition to that, they totaled 421.1 total yards per game which also is good for second best in the league. The Rams also have very high success running the ball as well. With the explosive duo of MVP candidate Todd Gurley and NFL journeymen CJ anderson the Rams average 139.4 yards per game which is good for third best in the league. Clearly, the Rams are capable of lighting up the scoreboard with big numbers, If they continue this trend in the super bowl then they will be at the top of the football world
The Rams are a very solid 13-3. (15-3 if you count the playoffs) However in those three losses this season, there has been a common theme. Turnovers. Jared Goff alone was responsible for turning the ball over in the three losses. Against the Saints, He the. Against the Bears, Goff threw a whopping 4 interceptions. Lastly, against the Eagles, he was responsible for two turnovers. If Goff is safe with the ball and doesn’t give Tom Brady and the rest of the Patriots extra chances, they will be very successful in this game.
Although the Rams defense has truly been mediocre up to this point (Giving up 24 points a game which is good for 20th best) They are star studded on the defensive side of the ball and have the potential to be very potent. With guys like Aaron Donald (20 sacks), Ndamukong Suh (5x pro bowler) on the Line it makes bringing the QB down much easier and that's just the d-line. In the secondary, they have proven NFL vets Marcus Peters, Aqib Talib, John Johnson (4 INTS) and Lamarcus Joyner. Their secondary is definitely capable of shutting down the explosive Patriots offense. They have the stars on defense, the stars themselves just need to start acting like stars and not 20th best if they want to win their second Super Bowl.
At the end of the day, only time will tell who wins the game of games. We honestly have no idea who will end up winning the game. We have no idea what will happen. Hopefully, some of my predictions will come to reality. Till then, We have no clue what will happen. The Super Bowl is as unpredictable as it gets. Tom Brady can get hurt in the 1st quarter and then Brian Hoyer can come in and sling 4 touchdowns and lead the Patriots to their 6th ring. Tune in on February 3rd at 6:30 in Atlanta to find out who the king of football is.
For many students starting high school, sports quickly become a part of them. Being in a high school sport is very competitive and it pushes kids to compete against older and younger opponents. In indoor track and field kids from different school will compete against each other not based on their age, but their times.
I had a chance to talk to a returning senior of indoor track and a first time freshman to see what the difference in their physical performances mentalities are. This is what I found:
What Events do you compete in?
Sean(19’): “The 55 meter dash, and sometimes the 4x200 relay” He has run the same events every year.
Jose(22’): “I compete in the 55 meter dash, the 45 meter dash, and the 50 meter dash.”
“In the future I plan on adding the 4x200 relay next year.”
What do you like most about track?
Sean: “I just love the excitement and the energy it brings to me”
Jose: “Competing against juniors and seniors”
Do you have any plans for the future in track?
Sean: “I plan to do it in college and hopefully I’ll see how it goes”.
Jose: “When I'm a senior I expect to just blow them out” and by blow them out he means will win every race. “My mindset right now is just to excel every year.”
What advice do you have for incoming freshman/and or younger class men moving up in track?
Sean: “I'd say don’t expect to be the best and when you’re a freshman just continue to work on it and later in your high school career you will do better” When Sean did track his sophomore year, he ended with a time of 6.92 seconds in the 50 meter dash, now his senior year Sean finished with a time of 6.65 seconds.
Jose: “Just to be ready for like the workouts and everything and also just like push yourself in practice and you'll see the results in the races.” Jose’s speed is very impressive as his top run in the 50 meter dash gave a time of 6.68 seconds.
Sean has participated in indoor track every tear of high school, now equaling 4 years
“I see it more as a competition and it’s a very competitive sport, it’s just very enjoyable.”
Sean also plays football for McMahon in the fall and runs outdoor track in the spring.
“Freshman year I just expected it as just a little work out for me, but as it went on I actually started loving it and it became my passion”
Jose plans to continue doing indoor track in the coming years, but plays baseball in the fall and spring. “To be honest, like for me its just to stay in shape and to keep my speed up”. Jose plans to continue doing indoor track for McMahon and plans to become a well known name in the McMahon community.
For more information on the track teams runs and events you can visit Athletic.net
Walking into the gym at Greenwich the bleachers are filled with eager parents from different schools shouting their children’s names every time they seem to be in trouble on the mat. Wednesday, January 16 was a sad loss for McMahon who has 4 wins and 5 loses overall as a school.
Wrestling may seem confusing or uninteresting, but there is a lot that people don’t know about wrestling. In order to win your match you need to win by scoring more points through different moves or by pinning your opponent first. The match goes to 3 periods that are 2 minutes each, and after that if no one is pinned the win is given to the person with the most points.
McMahon ended up losing 54-21, but they fought hard throughout the match mustering a few wins here and there. One win was by Senior Captain Giovanni Romero scoring 2 points before pinning his opponent less than a minute into the match.
Giovanni said “As a team we all wanted to win against Greenwich, knowing it was going to be a tough match to win, but overall I’m proud of those who gave it their best in their match.”
Another win was from Junior Jeffrey Cocchia who scored 9 points compared to Greenwich’s 1 before pinning his opponent during second period. Jeffrey has gone this season with 18 wins and 1 loss, and when asked about yesterday’s loss commented that
“I was ok with the loss yesterday because I think that we wrestled good and I also think that we gave a good effort. I think that we went into the match with a winning mentality and just didn’t come out with the win.”
Senior Captain Malik Goethe didn’t win his match but he gave his best effort, scoring 2 points to Greenwich’s 2 points, but inevitably getting pinned losing his match during second period. This season Malik has gone 16-1 with his only loss being against Greenwich which says a lot about the skill he was facing.
“I was disappointed because we wrestled a good match, he just caught me with one move and stuck it,” said Malik.
McMahon wrestled a good game, they may not have won, but they had a good time wrestling as team not just as individuals.
After talking with co-captains Finn Cullen and Cooper Gibson about how to play and understand hockey, I boiled the sport down into ten must know rules and tips to fully understand the game.
“My top tips are to pay attention to what’s going on because it’s a really fast game and can be hard to keep up with” (Cooper Gibson, ‘20)
First, we talked about the rink and what all of those different lines and circles mean.
You can’t pass across two lines, or else you will end up in one of the five face off circles, but most likely in your defensive half.
The game starts in the center circle where each team has an equal chance of winning the puck.
The crease is where the goalie usually stays, but can leave to make a save if it is on their side of the ice.
“All of the rules weren’t confusing because I was lucky enough to have a dad who was a ref all his life and played in the NHL, so when you have someone who is that influential in your life, it makes it a lot easier.” (Finn Cullen, ‘21)
There are countless ways to end up in the face-off circle, for instance earning a penalty by checking from behind, which is catching a player off-guard without the chance to defend himself or “slashing” another opponent with his stick to cause injury or prevent a play.
The fifth tip on understanding hockey is to know all five positions: goalie, defensemen, left wing, right wing and center. On the ice, there are always six guys playing. Players like Finn Cullen play center and Cooper Gibson, # 4, play defense.
“I play center because it is the position I’m most familiar with and it benefits the team because I have more of an opportunity to control the tempo of the game” (Finn Cullen, ‘21)
The all-star goalie, Max Vitucci, is arguably the reason for success in many of the Norwalk-McMahon team’s games. The goalie’s job is to stop the puck in his special glove, different than those of the other team members, this one has a net in it, which makes it easier to catch and then play back to the team.
In order to “sub” in players, they must be close to the bench where the substitute is in order for the new guy to come on. This process is called subbing “on the fly.”
Hockey has different “lines” that they premake before the games to make it easier to sub. The first line consists of starters and is usually the best players. The Norwalk-McMahon team has 4 forward lines and 2 defensive lines because of their larger team.
“Biggest challenges in hockey are learning to communicate well with your teammates 'cause if you don’t you can’t win” (Cooper Gibson, ‘20).
Our team consists of both high schools: Norwalk High and our school, Brien McMahon. Their home rink is Sono Ice House, only a six-minute drive from McMahon, and is also where they have their practices after school.
After learning all of these different rules and tips, I hope you head out to the next Norwalk-McMahon boys hockey game!
McMahon is filled with many skilled and talented people each with a unique story that most do not know about. This story is about sophomore Fashanti Lee and her dedication to being part of the McMahon community.
Starting with gymnastics at the age of 7, as Lee got older, she decided cheerleading was the better option. Her cheerleading career began in 7th grade. Her inspiration from her mother has made her into the cheerleader she is today. Lee said, “My mother has always been there for me and one of the people that motivate me to become better.”
Her position on the cheer team is the base, which is the one holding the people up in the air and is typically one of the strongest. She then went on to give her best attributes by saying, “My best skill set is tumbling and my second best skill is stunting because I am one of the strongest bases they have.”
Her support system comes from her family and a few close friends. She stated, “They support me by showing up to practices, cheering me on, motivating me and giving me little talks like ‘stop doubting yourself’ and ‘do what you have to do to get to where you want to be.’”
When asked about her time away from cheerleading she responded with “I have time mostly on the weekends and maybe sometimes after school and in that time I rest my body and get some sleep.”
One of Lee’s dreams in life is to become a professional cheerleader, however, at the moment with her love of animals she wants to become a veterinarian. “I don’t think I would settle with cheerleading if I want to accomplish something bigger and better.”
When asked what was her most memorable moment she responded with “Going to competitions and getting a top three spot ranking because it was a good feeling knowing my worth in cheer and knowing that if I put in work there will be a good outcome.”
Lee’s experience on the cheerleading team is one to remember. She said “I have increased my stamina, gotten strong, more confident and have made a lot of new friends. The bond my team has is irreplaceable.”
By: Brendan Duddy
PrideTime Senior Editor
It was another nail biting victory for the Senators who defeated Ridgefield Thursday, January 17th on McMahon’s home hardwood 60-58 in overtime.
McMahon, who is coming off of an important victory against Stamford High Tuesday night, started the game off slowly. Scoring only 15 points in the first half and down 11, McMahon was getting the open looks they wanted but weren’t able to knock them down.
“I felt like are team wasn’t communicating and we were mad at each other, not playing as a team” senior Justin LeBron had to say in regards to the first half.
The fourth quarter was a thriller as both teams matched each other shot for shot. In the end McMahon had the ball for the last shot of regulation. With the game tied and a shot to win the game, Jajuan Wiggins pulled up from three point land but the shot fell short clanging off the front of the rim. In overtime, the shootout between the two teams persisted but in the end McMahon was able to come out with the win.
This is the third consecutive game that the Senators have faced a first half deficit. They have won two of those three games, sending two of them into overtime. This pressure has to have a toll on the team. However, according to LeBron, “I feel like the team can handle fighting all game and we take the stress off of us by communicating but not every time.’ Adding “but yes it is stressful.”
Now the team knows it's on them to get off to the strong start the team is in desperate need of. The next chance for them to do this is Saturday against Stratford on the M at noon. Stratford has won 4 of their last 5 games and is looking to extend their win streak to 4 games against McMahon.
By: Claire Ripperger
PrideTime Sports Editor
I t’s no secret how deep the McMahon vs. Norwalk High rivalry runs however, the boys on the NorMac hockey team have no problem putting that aside when the skates hit the ice. This year it was on the junior captains, Cooper Gibson and Jeb Boyer, to unite the unlikely teammates.
Senator Cooper Gibson, has been playing hockey for ten years yet the rest of the team isn't as experienced. With such a young team, Gibson says it’s a challenge, “Not a lot of kids have too much experience so it's definitely a building year for us, but having a bunch of younger players keeps us excited for our season next year.”
On top of a young group of guys, Gibson and the other captains have to deal with working with their across town rivals. While he may be friends with the players from Norwalk High School, not everyone else is. He says, “I’m fine with it, however I understand why there could be a little tension between other kids, but we don’t worry about it in practice or games.” The Senator defenseman isn't going to let the rivalry or inexperience of the team ruin the season.
Jeb Boyer, a left wing/center captain from Norwalk High has a very similar outlook on the team and season. Due to only having a short schedule, Boyer stresses the early games to his teammates, “Not a lot of guys know how important early games in our season are, given we only have 20 games until the state tournament.”
He adds, “However, with a young team also comes positivity because we will build a strong core for following years as we are only graduating three seniors.” Boyer also feels having cross town rivals as teammates don't cause much tension. “For us it is different. Yeah, we mess around with each other and stuff but that’s just what teammates do. It doesn't even feel like our team is made up of kids from different schools.”
Next Game: NorMac vs. St. Joseph High School Saturday, January 19th
This is the game we’ve all been waiting for! Make sure you’re there when the McMahon Senators take on the Stamford High Knights on Monday January 14th, at 7:00pm on the M. McMahon had lost against Stamford High last year, 52-45.
Due to the tension between the two teams, the Senators have been working on their team chemistry in hopes of defeating the Knights this year. The rivalry between the two teams just have fans jumping out their seats. This rivalry goes back to when these two schools played each other in football which resulted in a full team brawl.
“ We do team bonding activities outside of basketball that helps our team chemistry and brings us more together,” says Saikwon Williams, senior captain. They also tried working on their biggest problem and that’s ball handling. “For this game our team just needs to work on ball control. Stamford is a scrappy team and they play hard on defense. We have to be just as physical as them if we want to win this game,” Williams added.
Not only is this a game they truly love playing, but this game is where students and families always attend to see who will take the victory. Games like this, the crowd is always packed and the energy is intense. Not only basketball but football, No matter if the game is away or home, both fan sections will always be filled. The rivalry between the two teams just have fans jumping out their seats.
Photo Credit: Daniel Saunders
MCMAHON- The McMahon boys don’t need anyone to tell them that coming out slow can make games that much harder. The 4-3 Senators ended the first quarter scoring only 8 points to the Blue Waves, who had 16 points. Saikwon Williams, the senior center, can be thanked greatly since 6 of those 8 points were his. After the first quarter, the Senators knew that this will be a battle down to the wire. Both teams fought extremely hard all game.
By halftime, it was a 4-point game with a score of 27-31, and there was still hope for the Senators, despite the Blue Waves staying in the lead all game. The game stayed within 10 points for the second half. In the third quarter, the Senators and the Blue Waves went at it as the game was very close in the third and no team made a run the Senators did turn the ball over plenty of times with bad passing and contested shots and the Blue Wave capitalized on those mistakes.
“We got this, we gotta keep our heads up,” said senior center, Saikwon Williams. He explained that he knew they needed this game and he knew it wasn’t going to be easy and that this is the type of game that will just come down to who makes more shots and who makes the fewer mistakes and free throws will be an important part of the game in order for us to win we will need to capitalize on.
“Honestly, I felt like giving up but, I can’t give up on my team. I want this to be a successful season and I’ll do whatever to make it happen.” Said senior captain Saikwon Williams. The Senators starting lineup combined for a total 56 points In the fourth quarter McMahon finally capitalized on their mistakes and had the lead finally had just when the Senators had it there was a traveling violation on Michael Fuller who didn’t have that many points in the game but his steals and his defense on their best player left them starstruck. The game extended into overtime where unfortunately, the Blue Wave won the game 81-77
FACT: in total, both teams had 10+ turnovers
Player Of The Game: Will Wrolapp 14 points 1 reb 6 assists
Next Game: Monday January 14 2019 @ Brien McMahon vs Stamford High Black Knights.