Friday, February 5, 2016

2015-16 College Basketball: The Season of Upsets

Justin Fischetti
Staff Writer

On the night of Feb. 2, the 11th ranked Providence Friars faced off against a mediocre DePaul Blue Demons squad. Providence went into the game in the midst of an impressive run in the Big East with road wins against Georgetown and then-4th ranked Villanova as well as a home win against then-18th ranked Butler; its only blemish came in a tight home game against then-7th ranked Xavier. Meanwhile, DePaul entered the game with just 1 win; a tight one against an unimpressive Marquette team, in nine Big East games played overall. Even though the game was played at DePaul, an easy Providence win was expected.
 Except things didn’t go as planned.
 DePaul, aided by a near 50% shooting performance, managed to pull off a stunning 79-72 upset win over Providence and their star Kris Dunn.
 However, given how the season has gone so far for Division 1 College Basketball, the end result of the game might not be quite as shocking as it normally would be.
 This season is on track to be known as the season of upsets. Teams ranked in the top 25 best of the country have been losing to unranked teams so frequently that it no longer seems a huge surprise when one occurs. While most years feature teams that cruise through the regular season to become a solid pick to make a deep run in the NCAA Tournament, this year it is seemingly impossible to predict which teams will reach the Final Four in the tournament and even difficult to determine which teams will be a top seed for the tourney.
The upsets started on opening day, when then-17th ranked Wisconsin was stunned at home by Western Illinois, who was projected to finish last in the Summit League.
Countless upsets followed afterward.
 As of the start of February, teams ranked in the top 5 have lost a combined 24 games, 13 of those losses coming against unranked opponents. This is the most losses by the country’s best teams at this point in the season in college basketball history. A top ranked team has lost 5 times so far this season; the most at this point since 1949. Top 5 teams have lost so frequently that the latest 1st-ranked team that lost - Oklahoma against Iowa State on Jan. 19th - didn’t even fall from the number one spot in the poll the next week.

 Other surprises this season include Duke’s fall out of the top 25; the first time this has happened since 2007. Some schools have disappointed so far this season such as Kentucky, California, Gonzaga, Vanderbilt, Connecticut, Wisconsin, and Utah, while other schools such as Iowa, Xavier, Miami Florida, South Carolina, and Texas A&M have exceeded expectations. With how the regular season has gone so far, we could be looking forward to quite a bit of madness in March.

Wrestling is Determined to Make History

Russell Abernethy and Matt Smith
Staff Writers

Wrestling season is here and there is no one more excited than Coach Irv Miller.
 “I cannot wait to get back on the mat and I believe the boys feel the same way,” he said.
 Last year’s squad finished the season with a 10-4 record and took second in the district. The team also sent nine wrestlers to regionals and two won wrestlers won districts, brothers Igor and Max Lupisella.
 The team also had four second place finishers and more third and fourth place finishers.
 With the loss of only two wrestlers from last season, senior captains Mike Manns and Tobias Mintzmyer, this year’s team is still strong.
 The team still has their captain and best wrestler, Igor Lupisella. The two new captains who will join Lupisella in leading the team are seniors Russell Abernethy and Brandon Smith. Smith is a four-year varsity wrestler for New Hope and Abernethy joined the team last year after transferring from Archbishop Wood.
 These senior captains have all the characteristics to build this team and make it great. The team also has five new wrestlers including three freshman.
 The team is hoping to make it to the state duals with wins in both the BAL tournament and the district tournament. The team has a lot of potential to be one of the best teams that has ever come out of New Hope’s history based on experience and size. Last year, the team took second in both tournaments and would love to have revenge on Lower Moreland who dealt both loses. The team is ready to work hard to get to their goal.
 The team has had top four finishes in all five of the tournaments that they have wrestled in this year, including two first place finishes at the Church Farm and Delaware County Christian Invitationals.  They also took second at the New Hope-Solebury Invitational, third at the Springside Chestnut Hill tournament, and fourth at the Harry S. Truman Penn-Jersey Duals. With a win over Church Farm on Feb. 3, the team is currently 4-0 in the BAL and 7-2 overall in dual meets. Also holding a commanding 1st place lead in the standings for the BAL.
 The team is also ranked number one going into the District One Dual Meet tournament that will be held on Saturday Jan. 6. If the team wins first, they will continue into the state duals the following weekend. The team has never won the District Duals tournament and has never made it all the way to states. Following the state duals in consecutive weekends will be the individual BAL, district, regional, and state tournaments.

 With the post-season approaching, the team hopes to finish the season as well as they started.

NHS Wrestling 2K16

Katie Lotier, Morgan Schroeder and Brooke Walsh
Staff Writers

Right now, New Hope’s wrestling team is preparing for regionals with hard work and commitment. Wrestling is a physical competition, between two different competitors. Besides basketball and winter track, the other winter sport choice is wrestling. The NHS wrestling team this year consists of new freshman faces who are strong and determined boys. The team has both the quality of amazing players and the quantity. The boys do insane conditioning at each practice to get bigger and tougher for their next match. For conditioning they run, do pull ups, push ups, sit ups and then they wrestle. It is a very dangerous sport. Injury rates are higher in matches than at practices for both college and high school wrestling. The most frequent highschool injuries are shoulder strains/sprains (8.5%), ankle strains/sprains (7.6%), knee strains/sprains (7.0%), neck strains/sprains (5.4%) and concussions (5.4%).

This season so far, a player has already exempt from playing because of a wrestling injury. During a match, Derek Smith had a hard contact hit with the mat resulting with two broken wrists. Before Derek Smith got injured, he said in an interview that he is most looking forward to regionals. He says the fastest that he’s pinned somebody is 1:37. The most challenging thing about wrestling is said to be conditioning, so it’s obvious that they take it seriously and prepare before the matches. For example, “It's about quality not quantity”, said Nick Fest, freshman wrestler. When asked about his relationships with his teammates, he said that they were very, very close. Not only do the players feel passionately about the sport, but they have formed close bonds and have become good friends. The team recently won at their last tournament, showing that their hard work has paid off. Last night, on February 3rd, New Hope had a big win with a score of 52-12 against Church Farm. They played as a team, always rooting there other teammates on while there on the mat.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Girls' Lacrosse continues to grow in 2016

Stella Kelley
Staff Writer

Considering the harsh winter climate lately, it is hard to picture the warm spring months. However, they will be here before you know it, and spring means the beginning of springs sports. All spring sports begin practices on March 1, including girls’ lacrosse. Girls’ lacrosse is somewhat new to the school district, which means that the program is growing more and more each year.
 There are many exciting events coming up for the 2016 season. First off, parents of the girls’ lacrosse team are starting the team’s first booster club. This club will help to set up fundraisers to bring in money for the team to buy equipment, hold an end of season banquet, senior night, and most importantly, a spring break trip to Florida! The team will be staying in St. Petersburg for five days. During the trip, the team will work on conditioning, play games against teams from around the country, while also getting free time to spend time on the beach relaxing! The team’s coach, Betsy Dougherty, will be accompanying them.
 If you wish to join the 2016 New Hope-Solebury Girl’s Lacrosse team or become a team manager, contact team captains Maggie Dougherty, Lia Brussock or Coach Betsy Dougherty. Open gyms are held on Wednesdays typically from 7 p.m.-8:15 p.m. and preseason workout sessions are on Tuesdays in the weight room. The team also plays indoor games at SMG in Warminster every Saturday to prepare themselves for the season.

Super Bowl 50: New Hope’s Predictions

Katie Hunt
Staff Writer

In a completely anonymous and randomly selected survey, 75 students stated who they thought would win the Super Bowl this year. Carolina Panthers, an unexpected competitor in this year’s season, won with 41 votes. Broncos came in a close second with 34 votes, making this year’s Super Bowl game predicted to be a real nail biter.
 This was the Panthers seventh time playing in the playoffs and only their second Super Bowl since being founded in 1995. With their starting QB Cam Newton, the Panthers are entering Super Bowl 50 with an astonishing record of 15-1 in the regular season. Panthers have never won a Super Bowl before, so a victory for them will be one for the books.
 On the other side, the Broncos have played in the playoffs numerous times and have competed in 8 Super Bowls. With their starting QB Peyton Manning, the Broncos are going into the Super Bowl with a record of 12-4 in the regular season. Broncos have only won two Super Bowls since their founding.
 The two number one picks head to head in Super Bowl 50. The number one offense vs. the number one defense in the country. Who do you think is gonna win?

Denver Broncos                        45.3%
Carolina Panthers                   54.7%