Category Archives: Staff Picks

Staff Pick

The winner of the NCAA Tournament will be…

Joey Karlik:
Villanova. They are the highest scoring team in the NCAA and top 25 in assists. They will hammer down any opponent that steps in their way. With experience on their side and an excellent coaching staff, they will win another title this year. They will go against Loyola-Chicago in the title game and that’s where the cinderella story will end. Chicago has been too lucky and have not dominated a game except for a nine seed Kansas State. The number one seed Villanova will obtain yet another NCAA title.

Dante Troina:
Kansas vs. Duke will be recognized as the National Championship by me this year. The meeting of two of the most successful college basketball programs did not disappoint at all. Malik Newman ran baseline to baseline, drilling every corner three he took, and blossomed into a star in front of the world. Controversial calls tore the world in half, fighting the difference between a block and charge. Grayson Allen, the most polarizing Duke villain since Christian Laettner, played his final game of College Basketball. His shot at the end of regulation will remain infamous forever. Kansas finally got over its Elite Eight demons, and won 85-81 in a game that Coach Bill Self couldn’t help but say it was the best one he’s ever been a part of. Who won? Basketball fans. We witnessed one of the best college games of all time.

Kyle Smith:
Michigan. They are good, but they’re not flashy. Sort of, in a way they are sneaky about how good they are. They will have to beat Loyola. Loyola has an amazing story and everyone loves an underdog, but they simply do not have the experience needed to succeed past the final four. Michigan is a team that people only know they’re good because they’ve made it this far, but I feel like they will be underestimated once they beat Loyola and make it to the Championship. Villanova will end up beating Kansas and will meet Michigan in the championship. The grit and fire that michigan plays with will be able to lead them to an NCAA title. They are tough. Wagner will have a big game against Loyola and will hopefully be able to be consistent and carry that over to the ship.

Marcus Lee:
Loyola-Chicago. Not only are they proving to be a very good defensive/offensive team, they play with a passion that not every team has “the ultimate underdog.” Led by point guard Clayton Custer and shooting guard Ben Richardson- who has scored at least 20 points only two other times in four seasons at Loyola, has been great and will continue to play with energy and fire with this being his last year as a Wolf. Loyola has hit the hearts of the nation in the perfect underdog story and I personally believe that this story has a happy ending. Loyola-Chicago as your NCAA 2018 NATIONAL CHAMPS.

Damiyen Porter:
Michigan. With a defense first, offense second mentality, Michigan is one of the top defensive teams in the tournament. Their intensity on defense is what has put them on top this year, no. 6 in the nation on points allowed per game and no. 14 in defense efficiency. So far Michigan has held their opponents to 59 per contest this tournament. Head coach John Beilein is one of the best coaches in the country, his ability to make quick in-game adjustments has helped his team win many games this season. The Wolverines will face no. 11 seed Loyola-Chicago who are also a very good defensive team and have really came out of nowhere and set the tournament on fire. No one thought Loyola would make it this far not even Sister Jean who picked them to fall in the Sweet Sixteen, so I think what it will all come down to is experience. Coach Beilein’s experience and Michigan’s defense will put the Wolverines over Loyola and this momentum will push them to winning the NCAA championship.

Staff Pick

The winner of the NCAA Tournament will be…

Joey Karlik:
Villanova. They are the highest scoring team in the NCAA and top 25 in assists. They will hammer down any opponent that steps in their way. With experience on their side and an excellent coaching staff, they will win another title this year. They will go against Loyola-Chicago in the title game and that’s where the Cinderella story will end. Chicago has been too lucky and has not dominated a game except for a nine seed Kansas State. The number one seed Villanova will obtain yet another NCAA title.

Dante Troina:
Kansas vs. Duke will be recognized as the National Championship by me this year. The meeting of two of the most successful college basketball programs did not disappoint at all. Malik Newman ran baseline to baseline, drilling every corner three he took and blossomed into a star in front of the world. Controversial calls tore the world in half, fighting the difference between a block and charge. Grayson Allen, the most polarizing Duke villain since Christian Laettner, played his final game of College Basketball. His shot at the end of regulation will remain infamous forever. Kansas finally got over its Elite Eight demons and won 85-81 in a game that Coach Bill Self couldn’t help but say it was the best one he’s ever been a part of. Who won? Basketball fans. We witnessed one of the best college games of all time.

Kyle Smith:
Michigan. They are good, but they’re not flashy. Sort of, in a way, they are sneaky about how good they are. They will have to beat Loyola. Loyola has an amazing story and everyone loves an underdog, but they simply do not have the experience needed to succeed past the final four. Michigan is a team that people only know they’re good because they’ve made it this far, but I feel like they will be underestimated once they beat Loyola and make it to the Championship. Villanova will end up beating Kansas and will meet Michigan in the championship. The grit and fire that Michigan plays with will be able to lead them to an NCAA title. They are tough. Wagner will have a big game against Loyola and will hopefully be able to be consistent and carry that over to the ship.

Marcus Lee:
Loyola-Chicago. Not only are they proving to be a very good defensive/offensive team, they play with a passion that not every team has “the ultimate underdog.” Led by point guard Clayton Custer and shooting guard Ben Richardson- who has scored at least 20 points only two other times in four seasons at Loyola, has been great and will continue to play with energy and fire with this being his last year as a Wolf. Loyola has hit the hearts of the nation in the perfect underdog story and I personally believe that this story has a happy ending. Loyola-Chicago as your NCAA 2018 NATIONAL CHAMPS.

Damiyen Porter:
Michigan. With a defense first, offense second mentality, Michigan is one of the top defensive teams in the tournament. What has put the Wolverines on top this year is their intensity on defense, no. 6 in the nation in points allowed per game and no. 14 in defensive efficiency, so far Michigan has held their opponents to 59 per contest this tournament. With head coach John Beilein one of the best coaches in the country and his quick in-game adjustments and game planning Coach John Beilein has been perfect this season. The Wolverines will face no. 11 seed Loyola-Chicago who is also a very good defensive team and have really come out of nowhere and set the tournament on fire. No one thought Loyola would make it this far not even Sister Jean who picked them to fall in the Sweet Sixteen, so I think what it will all come down to is the experience. Coach Beilein’s experience and Michigan’s defense will put the Wolverines over Loyola and this momentum will push them to win the NCAA championship.                 

Staff Pick

There’s one quarter left in the school year. I feel….

Keri Thomas:
Ready. Not just for school to be over and summer to begin but for everything that will happen in these last few months. I will finally find out decisions on scholarships and make my last decision on choosing a college. I’m also ready for all the events like senior skip day, paper toss, and prom that seniors experience in this last quarter of school. This will be my first prom and first for the other events as well and I’m excited to be a part of these special events that I’ve been looking forward to since freshman year. Other things I’m ready for are spring sports and the, hopefully, sunny weather during the last few months of school. The nice weather makes students want to go outside to lay out in the sun or watch baseball games– two of my favorites things to do. The end of the school year is a stressful time but this year, as a senior, I won’t have to worry about a ton of finals and can just focus on college. Although I’m ready for all these events to happen I don’t want it to all rush by. The last quarter of school is always fun and I want to enjoy this last one as much as I can.

Joey Karlik:
Stressed out. I have so much stuff I have to do with that one quarter left. Everywhere I go I hear ghosts whispering, “Scholarships…. Eagle Scout work… UT requirements… AP Classes… Summer Job…” How is one person supposed to do all this by the end of May? That’s in pretty much 1 month and I am freaking out. Soccer is also throwing a wrench in it, but it’s a good stress reliever. This is a wake-up call for me and now isn’t the time to relax and coast. Senior year was supposed to be the “least stressful year” I was told. That turned out to not be the case. I can do this though. I knew that this would happen when I signed up for these goals. I just gotta power through it.

Rosie Kacenas:
I feel excited. I’m so ready to start life after high school – I feel like at this point in the school year I’m just sitting and waiting for my life to begin. Growing up in Ketchikan has its perks, but there are so many new opportunities to be had outside of Alaska. Four years in the same building, going to the same store, seeing the same people day after day… it’s a lot of the same over and over again. However, I’m definitely going to miss the security high school life brings. Not having to pay bills or rent is something that I’ve definitely taken for granted. I know that college is going to be a lot different, but it’s something that I’m ready to experience. I’ve worked hard to get all of my ducks in a row, now I’m ready for the adventures to begin. Struggles are inevitable, but going through difficult things is what make people stronger and more well-rounded. I’m excited to be an adult and start my life in the real world.

Verona Kamberi:
Ecstatic! Sure it will be bittersweet to graduate from Kayhi, but y’all, I’m ready for the next chapter. Summer is around the corner and college is just in a couple of months. I could use a little more knowledge on balancing a checkbook or even paying bills, but I guess I have to learn all that before college. High school has been great, but man I need to grow up and by that I mean teach myself how to adult. It’s tough y’all, trust me, doing all those adult stuff is very stressful, but we’ll see how it goes. Anywho, one more quarter left and that means it’s time to enjoy the quality time with the teachers and students.

Kody Malouf:
Scared because I am in no way ready for the real world. The only food I can make is cereal and I don’t understand how I’m going to survive in the cold dark vaccum of real life. What am I going to do for a living? How do you even figure that out? Can I get one of those jobs where you get paid for existing like Kylie Jenner? That’d be nice. How do you balance a checkbook? How do you apply for a home loan? How do you pay taxes? Hell, it took me like four hours just to fill out the FAFSA, but hey at least I can recite the quadratic formula through song. I feel scared and unprepared for life, but I’ll probably just figure all of that out on my own at some point or another I guess.

Staff Pick

Most memorable southeast housing experience

Joey Karlik:
My sophomore year in Juneau, I had just gotten into my first finals match of my career in wrestling. I lost by pin but throughout the entire match, all the southeast teams were cheering for me because we were all anti-Colony. It was close for the most part and I was proud. I was housed out with the now state champion from TM, Carl Tupou and partnered with my good friend Paul Allmendinger. Paul got 2nd and Carl won his match by 1.  We were all so pumped after our matches, so we all went to Pell’s of course to celebrate.  On our way back to Carl’s truck we heard a noise behind a building. We pulled out our flashlights on our phones and slowly walked towards it. We inched forwards and out came a stray cat. We laughed for a minute and went back to the truck. Carl backed up and claimed “he hit a pothole” but I’m still convinced to this day that we ran over that cat. Turns out later it was some old lady’s cat after we saw a missing poster on a pole the next day. That was the time we ran over a cat even though Paul and Carl still deny it to this day.

Brittany Slick:
Housing out is like flipping a coin– you never know if you’ll end up in a good situation or a bad situation. I’ll never forget housing out in Sitka last year with one of my basketball teammates. After our game, we walked right across the street from the school and into our housing home. Everywhere you looked, there was some sort of Coca-Cola product– and I mean everywhere.  Coca-Cola magnets on the fridge, Coca-Cola dishware, Coca-Cola puzzles framed and hung on the wall, even a Coca-Cola toaster cover. And you bet they had cases on cases of Coca-Cola cans in their fridge and pantry. On our last night there, they left us alone with no food for hours and we were starving. So, we snuck out their back door and had another teammate’s housers pick us up to go to the store. As we were about to check out, we saw our houser mom buying food and we immediately hid from her. She left before us, and we had to checkout and race her home. We snuck back in seconds before she came in with her food. Needless to say, we had 2 dinners that night– and plenty of Coca-Cola.

Gabe Bowlen:
If I had to choose a most memorable housing experience, I’d have to choose between two. The first was freshman year when I went to Juneau for swimming. I was housed with Logan Hammersland, and we’re good buddies so it was pretty fun. Logan and I headed to the store, bought a couple pizzas, and brought them back to the housers house. I then called up on of our friends from Juneau to bring us to Fred Meyers. We left for a few hours, got some snacks and then we walked back to the house since it wasn’t too far. By then we were starving and ready to cook the pizza. Walking into the kitchen we were a little dumbfounded. The whole family ate all of our pizza. They didn’t ask, or even think that they were ours. The good thing about this one was that the family bought us double the pizza the next day.
The second experience was in Sitka last year during baseball season. I was housed with Liam Kiffer, Cody Kemble, and Wyatt Barajas. Before we got to the house, we introduced ourselves to the dad of the family. When it was my turn to introduce myself, I said my name as usual. He thought I said Dave, not Gabe. We all thought it was funny, and I thought it would pass over. It didn’t. I was called Dave for the rest of the trip, and for the rest of season. I didn’t mind, I kind of liked it. All in all, housing is pretty cool, and you meet some interesting and fun people.

Collette Rhein:
There are so many great memories to pick from but I think my most memorable housing experience was probably my sophomore year in Sitka for Music fest. I always stay with my friends because some of my best friends live in Juneau, Sitka and Wrangell. My friends from Wrangell are fishermen and they were fishing in Sitka at the time of music fest. Every night we hung out, played foursquare, had bonfires, and played games. It was the first time I got to see them all in over a year and it was the best four days ever. They have this huge net tied to about five trees in the backyard and its made into a hammock. But that wasn’t all, the percussion section was perfect. Lily and Noah were seniors and we had the perfect percussion family, we got a superior on our ensemble and watched some amazingly talented kids perform theirs, and to top it off we played Russian Christmas music for the concert and the adjudicator had nothing but good things to say. We played it better that night then we had ever played it before and that’s an extremely difficult compassion. After the concert we got free ice cream and had one last bond fire. All around it was a great trip and hard to leave.

Richard Stuart:
Although I have only been housed out twice, once when I went to Wrangell for basketball and once when I went to Juneau for wrestling, out of the both times, my most memorable time would be the the time I went to Juneau. I was housed out by Connor Norman and was with Brayden Linne, Patrick Rauwolf, Paul Allmendinger, and Max Collins. We all got there friday night after wrestling and we were all pretty tired. We were staying in the third story of Conner’s house, which had a pool table and had a full kitchen. Nothing fun really happened the first night. We all had to wake up early and complained that none of us could eat food because we all had to make weight in the morning. The next night after everyone was done wrestling and we were all tired, all of us went to the store. We bought so much junk food because we didn’t have to make weight the next day. All of us stayed up pretty late taking turns playing each other at pool, even though we had to wake up early to catch our plane ride back to Ketchikan.

Staff Pick

Should the U.S. implement stricter gun laws? Would stricter laws prevent school shootings?

Largim Zhuta:
The same question comes every time following the events of a mass shooting. Stricter laws won’t prevent school shootings, one would have to be extremely naive to believe that. The only thing implementing stricter gun laws would do is grant people a false sense of security. One thing that an overwhelming majority of citizens (both Democrats and Republicans) can agree on is having universal background checks for purchasing guns.
That being said, stopping guns won’t stop the problem, even with the universal background checks. The Las Vegas shooter was a perfectly normal, law-abiding citizen on paper, no check would have weeded him out. Guns haven’t changed considerably in the past two decades, but something regarding mentally deranged people has. Some aspect of our society is unknowingly creating more unstable individuals who believe it is ok to act out in such manners.

Chanell Browne:
The U.S has had an excessive amount of shootings, not only in schools but at concerts, live events, celebrations, and all sorts of events and places. So should the U.S implement stricter gun laws? My answer is yes, absolutely. It would reduce the amount of people who have access to guns. Which obviously, would be a smart idea. In my opinion I think that stricter laws would prevent not only school shootings, but other shootings as well. People shouldn’t just be allowed to just go and buy a gun without having a background check or any other resources to prove they aren’t a threat.
Nobody really understands why someone would be so cruel to shoot at a crowd full of people or a school. And there’s no way to prevent those sick minds from having those thoughts and ideas. But preventing the freedom of having easy access to guns can be changed. And at this point, it needs to be.

Rosie Kacenas:
Not only guns are to blame for the plethora of mass shootings the U.S. has had this year. I think that even if we implemented stricter gun laws, mentally unstable people would find another way to cause harm. That being said, guns are far more capable of causing mass-destruction than a knife. I think that background checks should be required of everyone purchasing a gun, and there should definitely be legislature passed banning bump stocks and other alterations to make guns able to hurt more people. There isn’t a way to completely get rid of people using guns to hurt people – but there are measures that can be taken to help prevent it. Any decision Congress makes will upset one group or the other, but desperate times call for desperate measures, and safety comes first. No one really knows what needs to happen, but at this point anything is better than nothing.

Richard Stuart:
I definitely think the U.S. should implement stricter guns laws. There is no reason why any U.S. citizen would ever need to have an assault rifle such as the AR 15 that was used during the school shooting in Florida. The first step the government needs to take to prevent school shooting is to implement stricter gun laws and ban assault rifles. The government should  allow rifles for hunting only, and require background checks on anyone that wants to purchase a weapon, and no felons or people with past violent criminal records should be able to purchase a weapon.
Although there is no certain way to tell if someone is going to shoot up a school or a concert stricter gun laws would help prevent people from acquiring guns to do so.

Hannah Maxwell:
I don’t see any downsides to implementing stricter gun laws. I’m not naive enough to believe that requiring licenses and backgrounds checks for firearms will solve all of our problems but I do think it would be a step in the right direction. Honestly what civilian needs to own an AR or rounds and rounds of ammunition.
In order to stop school shootings we will have to do a lot more than ban the sale of certain guns or make them harder to obtain. It’s a systemic mental health issue that doesn’t have a black and white solution. We’ve all felt alone at one time or another and even then it’s impossible to imagine how bad you have to feel to resort to that kind of violence. Obviously they’re guilty of committing the crime but aren’t we all guilty of creating a society that causes people to feel this way.  

 

Staff Pick

What’s your favorite Winter Olympic sport?   

Kody Malouf:
Curling is by far the best sport, it’s so much fun to watch because it’s so intense for such a pointless and confusing sport. I was watching curling the other night and the whole thing is just one person sliding a big round thing down the ice while the other sweeps the ice in front of it like their life depends on it. All the while the person who slid the round thing screams at the sweeper, most of the time in a foreign language which just makes it that much better. Whoever came up with curling had way too much time on their hands. It was pretty great because this one Russian curler was really hot, so that made watching even better, even though I had no clue what was going on.  

Gavin Salazar:
The half-pipe snowboarding events are definitely the most fun to watch. Seeing how high they get and all of the flips and twists they do is just so crazy to watch. I mean Shaun White’s last run to win gold Tuesday was very exciting and very impressive. I cannot imagine how much training goes into preparing for these events. They have to be amazing athletes and be very skilled to do what they do. It is also something that you don’t really have to have somebody to root for. Obviously I would want for the US to win but it is just fun to watch no matter who is participating.

Liam Kiffer:
The bobsleigh is hands down, the best sport to watch on the olympics. Now I’ve never actually watched it, other than two nights ago for about 3 minutes, but I’ll give you a little run down of how it goes. Two guys push a giant sled to a starting point, hop in at the last second, and sled there way down a pipe to the finish line. I’m not sure what the riders actually do once they’re finished pushing but the sport in itself is genius. The olympics have found a way to give young boys and girls the chance to become professional sledders, I can’t think of a better way to spend my life. Now I assume they’re probably going a little faster than when I hop on my piece of cardboard and make a wicked jump out in my backyard, but how much harder could it really be?

Joey Karlik:
How can I not go with Hockey!?! Ever since I watched Miracle as a little kid, I get excited about Hockey whenever it comes on. From the passing games to the full on body checks to the amazing goals scored; hockey is so amazing. Nothing about it is boring or dull. You think one team is gonna score and BAM! Some guy gets slammed against the plexiglass and the ref doesn’t call anything and the game goes on. You can’t force a call or flop like Football or Soccer. Hockey is probably the second most manliest sport in the world besides wrestling. It is so good. Plus, it felt so good to beat the soviet union back in the day. It’s enough to make a grown man cry.

Hannah Maxwell:
Ski jumping is by far my favorite olympic sport. They go so high and it just amazes me that they can land and not break anything. I can’t imagine waking up one day thinking you know what I’m going to become an olympic ski jumper. I’m scared of heights so I find it very impressive that all these professionals can ski off these huge jumps like it’s nothing.

Staff Pick

Super Bowl Predictions

Dante Troina:
Picking against Tom Brady and Bill Belichick is just plain stupid at this point. The duo is two lucky plays away from being undefeated in Super Bowls, and predicting an Eagles win feels more inaccurate than a Nick Foles pass. All momentum the Eagles have gained from playing the mediocre Matt Ryans and Case Keenums of the world will stop when they step on the field with the best football dynasty ever. The Philadelphia defense, highlighted by Fletcher Cox and Jalen Mills, has been dominating everybody, having some of the best pass rushers and defensive back units in all of football, and will probably force the Patriots into a couple mistakes that swing field position for their offense to score. As the game goes on, however, New England’s weapons will start to wear down of the Eagles’ defense. With Brandin Cooks, Danny Amendola, Chris Hogan, and Gronk taking turns catching Brady’s perfectly thrown passes, the Patriots have an embarrassment of riches at the receiving end. Bill Belichick also has running back depth that is interchangeable between four players, including last year’s Super Bowl hero James White and the ‘which way should I score on you this time’ Dion Lewis. The Patriots will win 27-23 in another classic game; Tom Brady and Bill Belichick’s legacies will be cemented (again), the Twitterverse will claim the NFL is rigged (again), Philadelphia’s rowdy fans will be sent home with a pat on the back and a ‘better luck next year,’ and balance will be restored in the football universe.

Joey Karlik:
My heart wants the Eagles but my mind and gut say the Patriots. The Pats always get to the Super Bowl for a reason, it doesn’t matter that they lost their best WR or their best defensive player. They don’t have to rely on star players; they didn’t have Gronk last year and still won. This year, the ending is gonna be different though. Here’s what’s gonna happen. Nick Foles will struggle early so the defense will have to carry the team in the first half. Tom and company will take the lead early, but Foles will rally his team at half with a two touchdown deficit and be only down three by the 4th quarter. The rejuvilent Eagles defense will get after Old Man Brady and limit him to punts. The Eagles will tie it up with 1:30 left giving the Patriots the ball. Brady will get his team down the sideline with no timeouts left and Stephen Gostkowski will miss the game-winning field goal. This will be the second Super Bowl to go into overtime. The Patriots will get the ball to the 1 yard line and people think that the game is over, but then the Patriots will FUMBLE IN THE ENDZONE. The Eagles will get down the field and Jake Elliot will kick a game ending field goal to win it. Brady and Belichick will be stunned. For once a kicker will be named Super Bowl MVP. That is my bold prediction and I’m sticking to it.

Hannah Maxwell:
The New England Patriots are the more experienced team and that will ultimately be the deciding factor. You can’t argue with Tom Brady’s resume and Nick Foles is a backup quarterback who has never even been to the Super Bowl. The Eagles defense is good, but they aren’t going to shut out Tom Brady for four quarters. Unless Foles rises to the occasion and has another 300 yard passing day, I don’t see a happy ending for the “underdogs.” I’m predicting a 38-20 final score. My beloved Patriots will be taking home yet another Lombardi Trophy to add to the collection, and more importantly Tom Brady will have the chance to go out with the bang he deserves.