Monthly Archives: June 2012

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David Harris ’12| Executive Managing Editor

At lot of time in this school was spent running at walls.

Some I chased after. Others I was pushed into. And a lot of the time, I followed the crowds in the same direction.

There are a lot of walls in this school. Some brick, some marble, but all the same in some way. There’s a wall by the gym full of pictures of athletes. Glass showcases and plaques as long as the main hallway itself. And like vandals who write on the bathroom walls, there was always some desire to make a mark on one of these hallways, albeit in a more legal way. And so the four year journey began.           

Lacking any rhythm or reason, I stumbled half possessed and fully conscious of where I was going, whatever goal it was I was working toward. A marble and brick goal.

Essentially, it was a trap.

There wasn’t an alternative place to run, except right at them. To end up on the Athletic Wall of Fame, student council plaques and Tower certificates. I hesitated, I stuttered and tripped on my way, but when I didn’t pick myself up, it was someone or something else nudging me towards that wall. Any control I had was somewhat illusion, riding a log down a river current but still thinking I could steer it. Resistance was futile; it just lessened the blow when I ran right into the walls.

Success or failure didn’t matter, because when you run at a wall, you can’t avoid it. It doesn’t move and it never gives. I was always told that the only opponent that I could never beat in tennis was the wall, because everything I hit at it would come back right at me. And as always, the wall defeated me.

 Running into a wall leaves no mark. Not a scratch or a dent. Instead of the intentions of placing a legacy upon brick, I lay dazed on the ground from impact, stuck inside the trap. And I looked up, and saw that the walls that surrounded me were just that: walls.

Complain as we want about the rat race for recognition, the allure of awards and a college application more worthy of a frame than our actual diploma, it exists because we let it, because we built those walls. Walls exist to confine, and that is all they really did.

They did it well.

Walk through the school and try to find my name anywhere in the building. If you look on the walls, you won’t find it. You can look in the athletic trophy cases; it’s inscribed on one of them. On the back side.

It only exists in stored file cabinets, placed where few will ever need to look. In Student Association files and Tower archives, where nobody will look for the name but instead for the work I did.

Google something about the Canned Food Drive at South. Of all the articles, the videos, you might find me in only one picture. In the only instance I’m quoted, I’m just “senior David Harris.” And despite the stubbornness I came into the school with of trying to be more than that, in the end, that’s all I wanted. Senior David Harris.

The allure of recognition, the draw of the adorned brick and marble, was something I thought wanted simply because I knew no different. In reality I wanted nothing more than to be able to fade into some sort of obscurity without the expectations of having to be the David Harris others would like me to be. Many people knew me by what I did, but hardly knew who I was; it’s much more preferable the other way around.

Sometimes I worried about how I would leave my four years here. What I wanted to accomplish, what I was to be remembered for, or remembered as. And at the end of it, I don’t want to be remembered as SA President. Not remembered as a tennis player, a Tower staffer, for grades or awards and jokes, any of that`. If someone were to ask about me, I don’t want anybody to say, “Oh yeah, he was SA President!” All I would ever wish for them to say is, “David Harris, he was a nice guy.”

But instead I let the walls that confined me also be a barrier to that. Nothing more than just a facade of brick and marble they were no place for me to place my faith and all my work into. Regardless, I found myself pinned with my back against the wall, because I stuck myself there.

In the end, walls crumble. Walls are redecorated. And one day there are no more walls to chase after, a day that requires a faith greater than the biggest legacy that wall could hold.

 High school is a different experience. The odyssey that begins here ends in the same place it began, ending through the same doors we walked in at the beginning, for every single student that walks into South.

These walls will still be around long after we leave this place. All that matters is the person who walks out of them on the last day. No wall ever defines that. No wall can ever change that.

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CONOR BUCKLEY ’12 | Executive Web Editor

I have no magical words or some golden rule to get you through high school, find success in life, or cure cancer.

But I do know a few things that may help in life or school or whatever. First, find yourself in high school and be comfortable with that person. People will like your odd quirks, its different and people are always looking for different.

Next, failure in one way or another is inevitable. A man is not judged by how much he fails or succeeds, but how he handles that failure.

 I’ll admit, I failed a lot in high school. But at the end of the day, sitting around and crying about it gets nothing done. This is a lesson I learned the hard way  when after receiving a Letter of Assurance and being Congressionally nominated by Congressman Hansen Clarke for the United States Military Academy at West Point, I was medically disqualified. Two and half months later I still cannot really accept the fact that for the time being I will not be able to serve my country and stand for what I believe in.

 The point is that things don’t always go your way. We have to learn how to deal with that and find a way to move on as hard as that can seem at the time. After I was disqualified I didn’t want to do anything. I didn’t want to go to school, I didn’t want to do homework, I didn’t want to talk to anyone, but my family and friends helped me get through.

This leads to the part where I thank my family and friends for always being there for me and sometimes putting up with me. Yes, sometimes I can be an ass, jerk, or a nuisance. So before you leave Grosse Pointe and go off wherever, value your time with your family, but especially your friends.  Because once everyone goes off and then comes back, things change.

And I’m scared of this change. You see, for the past thirteen years I have always had Matt Reno ‘12 at my side. Everyone knows it: we’re inseparable. I don’t even consider him a friend; he’s more of a brother. And quite frankly I don’t have the slightest idea as to what I’m going to do without him next year. Matt has been the most loyal friend a kid could ever ask for. For that I thank him.

I can’t forget about Brian Hall ’12. Brian is one of the most outgoing kids ever and I love the fact that he does whatever he wants and doesn’t give a damn about what you think about him. Sometimes it lands him into sticky situations, but I respect him and love him for it.

I’m definitely going to miss these two fine gentlemen next year as we go our separate ways. I simply want to say I would do anything for either one of them on any day.

Grosse Pointe really is an amazing place. I’m not the most Grosse Pointey of people; I don’t wear boat shoes or Lacoste, but appreciate Grosse Pointe. It really is an incredible community. South is one of the most beautiful high schools there is; it’s academic standards are incredible, but it’s the people that make it great. The staff and the students  make it so great.

So there it is. Be you and don’t care what others think of you, just have fun. And seriously follow that “treat others as you want to be treated” thing. It’s actually a great philosophy to live by. Things will get rough, but lean on your family and friends, they’ll get you through the tough times. Keep your head up and do what makes you happy. Life is short, live it to the fullest.

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The sunsets over the field during the Varsity Soccer team's regional 1-0 win against Farmington Hills Mercy on Tuesday, June 5.
The sun sets over the field during the Varsity Soccer team's regional 1-0 win against Farmington Hills Mercy on Tuesday, June 5. With this win the girls are another step closer to a State Championship.

MIKEY SULLIVAN ’13 | Staff Writer

After forcing the game into penalty kicks, Dani Ventimiglia ’14 pushed the Lady Blue Devils Soccer team past Farmington Hills Mercy 1-0.

With the win, South’s record stands at 14-3-2 and advances to the Regional Final where they will play Troy High School Friday, June 8 at 6:30 p.m.

Although the game had little scoring, the game was anything but uneventful. Maddie Ethridge ’12 played strong defense for the Blue Devils, making some key defensive plays on the ball deep in South’s zone and in front of the net

Claire Deboer ’13 also played terrific defense keeping the ball out of the defensive zone. With the help of Deboer and Ethridge, the Devils controlled the ball for most of the first half.

“Both of us defensively played really tight,” said Head Coach Gene Harkin. “We tried to do the best we could but they had a great back line.”

This effort continued into the beginning of the second half and there were few shots but again South’s back defensive line kept making big plays keeping them in the game.

Nearing the middle of the second, the offense started to pick it up and forward Chelsea Marsh ’13 helped by pushing the ball up the field and getting the ball in front of the net.

“One thing we talked about at halftime was getting the ball wider,” said Harkin. “The wide side of the field was open so we wanted to play the ball wider and try to swing it back.”

South seemed more conditioned then the Marlins and this would prove to be important later on when the game went into overtime. One of the key factors in this game was speed and quickness, which South seemed to have the advantage with players like Marsh.

The closest goal in regulation came after a questionable foul that wasn’t called on Marsh. After a free kick by Deboer, Ventimiglia got a foot on the ball and it ricocheted of the post and into the goalie’s arms. 

“I thought we had a goal for sure,” said Harkin. “To be honest I thought we carried a lot of that play but when we got it down there in the end we couldn’t get it done.”

Goalie Anastasia Diamond’s ’13 had an immense impact on the game. On countless opportunities, she came up big stopping all of the shots in regulation and overtime periods.

“She really came out and gave us her all when we really needed her,” said Lindsey Makos. “She is an amazing goalie and we couldn’t have done any of this without her.”

Diamond stopped three of the six shots she faced during the penalty kicks and South’s scorers were Elizabeth Clevenger ’13, Kathy Collins ’14, Deboer and Ventimiglia.

“My defense really helped me out and unfortunately it came down to PK’s(penalty kicks) but the good thing is we ended up pulling through,” Diamond said.

Harkin said that he believes Troy is a fine team and that the game should be a close one. Another key point of the game was Christy Flom ’13, who left with 15:30 left in the game with an apparent her right ankle. It is unsure about the details of the injury but it is likely she will not return for the rest of playoffs.

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Photo by MIKEY SULLIVAN '13 | Staff Writer. South played against North earlier this year.
Photo by MIKEY SULLIVAN '13 | Staff Writer. South played against North earlier this year.

RYAN NEWA ’12 | Online Sports Editor

Photo by MIKEY SULLIVAN '13 | Staff Writer. South played against North earlier this year.
Photo by MIKEY SULLIVAN ’13 | Staff Writer. South played against North earlier this year and lost after the game was called early because of rain. However, they were triumphant on Saturday, June 2 when they defeated them in the District Championship competition.

Thanks to a seven run fifth inning, the varsity baseball team defeated Grosse Pointe North 9-3 Saturday to win its district and advance to regionals.

Because Detroit Southeastern dropped out of its scheduled Saturday morning matchup with South, the Blue Devils were left having to win just one game to win the district.

Jon Parker, Matt Reno and Robby Kish, all ’12, along with George Fishback and Jack Doyle, both ’13, all made key contributions to ensure South took full advantage.

Though the final score appears lopsided, the game was in fact close for a long time. South struck first in the bottom of the second, while the Norseman responded with one of its own in the top half of the third.

“It took us a little while to get adjusted to Chip (North’s starting pitcher),” said catcher Timmy Kramer ’12.

That was where things changed, as the Blue Devils took control in the fifth, pushing seven runs across the plate to blow the game open.

“After you get the first few baserunners on, the rest seems to come a little bit easier,” said Kramer. “We had some timely hitting, and once we got the first couple runs up on the board, the hits just kept coming.”

The fourth inning assault started when the Blue Devils loaded the bases with just one out, thanks in part to third baseman Matt Reno’s ‘12 bunt down the third baseline that yielded no throw.

With the bases then loaded, Parker slapped a single up the middle, plating two runs and breaking the tie.

A couple batters later, centerfielder Cam Gibson ‘12, who will play baseball at Michigan State next year, came to the plate with the bases loaded again. He hit a ground ball to first base, which was fielded cleanly, but the first baseman attempted unsuccessfully to cut down the run at the plate. Reno beat the throw, and South continued to pour it on.

An RBI single from Andrew Addy ’12, a sacrifice fly, and a mammoth double from Robby Kish ’12 continued the Blue Devil onslaught. When the inning finally came to an end, South had stretched its lead to 8-1, and its chances of advancing to regionals were seemingly inevitable.

“We had a couple of really good innings,” said Kramer. “We did a pretty good job both from the mound and in the field. So it was definitely a good step forward.”

On the mound for the Blue Devils was Doyle, who lasted six full innings, giving up just three runs (two earned) and recording five strikeouts.

“He’s done very well for us this year,” Kramer said. “(This game) wasn’t any exception. He was phenomenal. He just did a great job.”

With the win, South begins regional play on Saturday. The team will take on University of Detroit Jesuit at 10 a.m. at North High School.

“Like any game, especially in playoff time, chances of winning are 50-50,” said Kramer. “It can go either way. It’s just a completely different atmosphere and completely different ballgame.”

Reno, on the other hand, is optimistic about the Blue Devils’ chances on Saturday.

“They have a few good relief pitchers, the can hit the ball, but they have some holes,” said Reno. “I think we match up well with them. I personally think we can beat them, but we’ll have to play our game. It’ll be a good one.”

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Photo courtesy Mary Weber
Photo courtesy Mary Weber

Kelsey Newa ’13| Staff Writer 

Photo courtesy Mary Weber
Photo courtesy of Mary Weber | The girls varsity soccer team poses with its Disctrict Champion trophy after defeating North in the title game.

After a successful season, girls varsity soccer is kicking it into high gear for some postseason madness.

The girls wrapped up a solid season, finishing off with only three losses total. But the team still had more in store as they entered district tournament last week.

The lady blue devils defeated Frasier in an away game on May 30. The score was 2-1 in South’s favor.

“We’ve been lucky so far, we’ve had a pretty good history of success,” said coach Gene Harkins.

The team took on Roseville the following night (May 31) and won again, keeping things consistent.

On Friday, June 1, the girls took on Grosse Pointe North for the third time this season. The previous two games resulted in a tie, and the Blue Devils sought revenge and beat North to earn the title of  District Champions.

“Everyone was so happy and excited to have defeated North after trying twice,” said Olivia Withers ’14.

While celebrating their accomplishment, the team must maintain focus as they enter into the regional tournament.

“Going into the region, we’ll play teams out of Farmington, and probably Troy if we make it (that far),” said Harkins.

With six game winners, Dani Ventimiglia ’14 has been a significant contribution to the team’s success this season, Harkins said.

“We have a lot of overall talent,” said Harkins. “We play really well together as a team.”

Team captain Charlotte Burns ‘12 attributes much of the team’s success to their closeness on and off of the field.

“We all get along really well,” said Burns. “A lot of us played together last year, so we know how each other play. We’re not just friends when we’re playing, but we have all gotten to know each other so well outside of soccer, and I think that has made us more successful on the field.”

Harkins hopes that going into regionals, the team will be able to improve defensively and give up zero goals. Offensively, he said he would like to see the team gauge their wins a little farther apart than one goal.

The bar is set high for the girls, considering last year’s team made it to the state semi-finals, said Harkins.

“We have a chance (at making it as far as last year),” said Harkins. “We could beat anybody, but you always have to be a little bit lucky too.”

After losing a significant number of players due to injury, some have returned to help the team advance in the regional tournament.

“South represented itself really well,” said Harkins. “I think if we work hard as a team, hopefully we’ll go all the way, that’s what we’re trying to do.”