VARSITY SOFTBALL IMPROVES SKILLS AGAINST MICHIGAN CITY

Story originally published here.

The lady Indians took on the Michigan City Wolverines on Wednesday, April 24, at home. Despite the dreary weather, the team was able to defeat the Wolverines with a final score of 18-1.

“It was raining and the weather was kind of annoying, so we knew that we had to just focus on ourselves and not the weather; just beating the other team. Michigan City is usually not as competitive as other schools so it was important to stay within ourselves and keep on getting better for other teams,” Alexandra Hickey (12) said.

The girls used this game as a chance to work on their own personal skills, particularly at the plate. Everyone in the lineup got at least one base hit, and Hickey lead in RBIs with three total.

“The hitting was good because we were able to string it along. We had a lot of hitters who were maybe in a bit of a slump that were able to make good contact and have improvement in their hitting. We were able after two outs to keep the inning going instead of just giving up,” Hickey said.

Madisen Tucker (11) also stood out on the mound. Her pitching in combination with the team’s defense held Michigan City to one run.

“Tucker did really good pitching yesterday, she hasn’t pitched in a few games so it’s good to see her get a lot of strikeouts and get quick innings,” Hickey said.

The softball team hopes to use this game as both a practice and a predictor for the rest of their season and into postseason play.

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BEST BUDDIES BALL OUT

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Best Buddies switched up their traditional meeting style on Monday, Feb. 27 by going to the gym instead of the cafeteria for their biweekly meeting.

“We decided to have the meeting in the gym to change it up a bit. We’re always in the cafeteria, and we wanted to move around and do something new. In the past [years] we’ve had a few meetings in the gym to play basketball or other games so we decided to do it again this year,” Kristina Almeida (12), Best Buddies President, said.

The meeting started off with a minor location mishap, causing everyone to switch to a different gym. Although this did result in a loss of time, members were still able to carry out the planned activities.

“We did Simon Says and [played] basketball. My favorite part was playing basketball with my friends,” Kamryn Saulesbury (10) said.

The next meeting will take place in the cafeteria on Monday, March 13.

CLOSE MATCHUP AGAINST MERRILLVILLE

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The varsity gymnastics team headed off to a highly anticipated meet against Merrillville on Thursday, Jan. 19. Although the girls lost 108.525 to 100.625, they are proud of their performance at this meet.

“The girls have been looking forward to Merrillville. They love their floor because it’s an Olympic floor–actually an old Olympic floor–and they love the girls there. They didn’t disappoint me by any measure. They did a fantastic job and broke a hundred, which is awesome especially this early on in the season,” coach Myra Lolkema said.

Standout gymnasts included Gabrielle DeVries (10) and Sophia Born (10), however, all of the girls “shined at their own moment” according to Lolkema. Another standout was Maya Tobin (12), who set a new personal best at this meet.

“Personally, I think I did really good. I actually got my personal best on beam. I got an 8 for the first time, so that was exciting. My goal is to keep my scores going up. So far every meet, I’ve had higher scores on every event, so that’s really exciting,” Tobin said.

The team faces off next against Valparaiso on Tuesday, Jan. 24. Although the Vikings are expected to be a tough competitor, the girls are taking the meet with a positive attitude.

“Valpo is one of the strongest teams in the state. A lot of times we go into those meets knowing we’re scoring 100, and they’re scoring 110. Honestly, winning is not the point when we go into those meets; it’s let’s go, let’s compete, let’s see what we can do, let’s see the scores we can get,” Lolkema said.

TAKING DOWN THE TROJANS

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In their first home game of the season, the varsity girls basketball team defeated the Highland Trojans with a final score of 63-49. The girls’ high energy and focus contributed to their win, improving their overall record to 3-3.

“We had a lot of energy going into our first home game. I knew we would be hyped up to play,” Kylie Fehrman (12) said.

This game was no walk in the park, however. The Trojans put up a fight, leading at the completion of the first quarter with a score of 19-17. While the lead was wavering back and forth between the two teams early on, the Indians began to take over during the second half of the game. The first half ended with a score of 30-26 Lake Central, but the Indians were able to outscore the Trojans in the third to increase their lead to 51-35.

“I think we came out strong and kept the energy up the entire game. It was a close game the whole time, but we got the result we wanted,” Fehrman said.

Fehrman led the team in points scored with 18 total, followed by Lauren Ladowski (11) with 14 and Rachael Robards (11) with 11. The Indians face off next against Munster High School at home on Tuesday, Nov. 29 at 7 p.m.

CANCELLATION CONUNDRUM

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With the arrival of winter comes the flurries of twinkling snowflakes, fresh blankets of powdery, white snow and luminous holiday decorations. Oh, and under-plowed roads, below-freezing temperatures and, of course, the infamous tweets calling for school cancellation clogging students’ Twitter feeds.

Students begin murmuring their hopes for a cancellation or a delay at the first sight of snow, but many do not realize the actual qualifications in order for these decisions to be made. In the most recent corporation newsletter released on Dec. 9, the administration revealed some of the most decisive factors when considering cancellation.

According to the newsletter, the district-wide road conditions play the most significant role in the decision to cancel school, although other factors are considered as well. The current forecast, conditions of sidewalks and conditions of school parking lots all factor into the decision.

A group composed of personnel from the transportation department, the assistant superintendent, the superintendent and, in some cases, others such as town managers and local police departments carefully deliberate the conditions in the morning before drawing any conclusions on the matter.

Student safety comes first when these decisions are made, but the administration also wants as few alterations to the schedule education-wise as possible. So students, warm up your cars early or get a head start on the trek to your bus stop because the careful consideration the administration puts into weather conditions makes cancellations few and far between.

CAPTIVATING CHOIR CONCERT

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The evening of Thursday, Oct. 13 began with the ringing of handbells reverberating about the auditorium, creating a beautiful melody for all to enjoy. A short while later, the calm hush over the audience was broken by applause as the first performance of the night came to an end. The fall concert that students of the choral department have been working towards for the first few months of school thus far had commenced.

“I think bells did really good. There were some mistakes, but it’s hard for the audience to tell. We definitely did our best that we could have done. I liked ‘Pirates of the Caribbean,’ the first song, [because it] is really challenging. There’s only nine of us, so it was even harder because we have people who were playing two octaves of bells, and that’s something that we have never done before,” Maya Tobin (12) said.

The night took an upbeat turn with the all-male group Da Capo’s rendition of “Hey There Delilah,” which was accompanied by guitars and a ukulele. The melodies continued with performances from the Concert Choir, Varsity Choir, Senior Treble, Trebleaires, Junior Treble Choir and Counterpoints.

“Personally, ‘Witch Doctor’ that Counterpoints performed [was my favorite]. The dance we did was a really high-energy, high-intensity dance that we spent a lot of time working on. We all agreed that that was the best we ever performed it, so it was just really fun to do on stage. I feel like all of the groups did a really good job, especially for this being our first concert working with our new director, Mr. Jones,” Parker Danner (12) said.

Mr. Nathaniel Jones, Arts, is a Lake Central alumni who was involved in the choir and handbell programs when he was in high school himself. Jones has returned as the new choir director, taking over the position previously held by Mrs. Sandra Hobbs.

“He’s doing a fantastic job so far. He works really well with us, and he knows what he’s doing.  This was a great way to start off his career at Lake Central. At first we didn’t know what our goals were for this year because this is a new group with a new director, but so far we all really like each other, and Mr. Jones is absolutely amazing. I feel like if we really tried we could go to State this year,” Danner said.

The next choir concert will be held on Dec. 13 in the auditorium.

GIRLS TRACK TAKES ON YEAR 25

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For 24 consecutive years, the girls track team has managed to uphold the same title: Sectional Champions. This is a feat not easily done, but the girls have key factors that they say contribute to their success.

“We all work really hard, and we all get along really well. When you have a close bond with your teammates, you’re not only working for yourself but working for your teammates, too,” Sarah Hunsley (11) said.

The hard work and connection of the team has allowed them to carry on this success so far into the current season. According to the Northwest Indiana Times, the team is currently ranked number one in the region.

“We shall see [if we win this year]. Each year, each team is different, [but] it’s nice to keep the streak alive. The girls believe it’s important, they believe the sacrifice is necessary for success,” Mr. Ron Fredrick, English, said.

Will this year’s team continue the legacy and protect the title for a 25th consecutive year? The team’s efforts for the remainder of the season will determine that. At the Sectional meet on Tuesday, May 17, the girls will see if they have what it takes to carry on the tradition.

TRIUMPH ON THE NEW TRACK

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The varsity boys track team hosted their first meet of the season against the Michigan City Wolves on Tuesday, April 19. Not only was this the first home meet, it was also the first meet the boys held at the new facility. The Indians won with a score of 78-54 to start off strong in the DAC.

“I think [the meet] went pretty well. We won the meet, which was our first win in the DAC this year. We won all the distance events, we did well on the throws I know and we had some good results in the pole vault,” Clayton Goldman (12) said.

Goldman received first place in the 400-meter dash and the 4×400 meter relay alongside Cole Easterday (12), Tyler Kramer-Stephens (12) and Antonio Pavloski (11).  Also gaining points for the Indians was Cameron Prisby (12) who received second place in pole vaulting.

“I jumped 12 feet that day, which got me second place. I was fine [with] that, but I definitely could have done better and gotten 12 feet, 6 inches. Based on this meet, we could better prepare ourselves for the upcoming meets by trying new things like going on different poles during practice and trying different drills at practice. The most important thing is practice, practice, practice,” Prisby said.

The next boys varsity track meet will take place on April 26 at Chesterton High School.

GOING MAD FOR MARCH MADNESS

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Since the beginning of the season in November, college basketball has been a source of entertainment for all those that watch. However, as March finally rolls around, basketball fans everywhere are filled with excitement toward a long-anticipated event to end the season: March Madness.

“My ringtone, if you call my phone, is “March Madness” [by Future] because it is March Madness season. I’m so excited, I’ve actually made three brackets so far,” Paul Centanni (12) said.

Many viewers fill out tournament brackets with predictions on how they believe teams will progress throughout the tournament.

“I like the competitiveness of filling out brackets and just being able to compare brackets with everybody. It’s cool seeing how well your bracket did or how bad it may have been. You can never be 100 percent certain on what’s going to happen. Every year there’s some sort of upset that happens in March Madness,” Eric Blankenship (11) said.

Lake Central Publications will be holding a March Madness Challenge in which students or teachers can fill out a bracket for the chance to win an NCAA 2016 tournament T-shirt. Participants can print the bracket here and tweet their completed bracket to @LCHSnews, or bring it into Room 9115 before Thursday, March 17.

BEATING THE SLICERS ON SENIOR NIGHT

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Following the bittersweet ceremony of senior night, the varsity wrestling team took on the LaPorte Slicers in one of their last home meets of the season. With the help of standout seniors, the team beat the Slicers with a final score of 45-21.

“Jake Kleimola (12), who’s our senior captain, Russell Gibbs (12), Nick Nykiel (12) [and] all of our seniors really wrestled tough, which was good since it’s senior night. We’re losing a lot of talent [this year] unfortunately, but we’re young. This year we have a lot of guys coming back, and that’s going to be beneficial for us for the next couple years,” Coach Josh Morgan said.

Seniors such as Kleimola had mixed feelings about senior night.

“Senior night was exciting, but it was disappointing too. After seeing it for three years and finally being in it and knowing that [the season is] coming to an end, it was disappointing, but I don’t think any of the seniors in the starting lineup lost so that’s exciting. [As a senior,] I just try to help the guys out and teach everyone as much as they can learn and just take everything I’ve learned over the years to instill into them,” Kleimola said.

Younger teammates realize the impact that losing this year’s seniors will have on the team as well.

“[I did] a lot better than I usually do because I actually got my head into it. Motivation from the rest of the team and coach helped me finally get my head back into it, and the seniors played a part in that big time. It’s going to be difficult without them there,” Brett Brown (11) said.

The next varsity wrestling meet is on Saturday, Jan. 9 at Hanover Central High School.