The Student News Site of McCallum High School

The Shield Online

The Student News Site of McCallum High School

The Shield Online

The Student News Site of McCallum High School

The Shield Online

Photos of the week

Featured snapshots archive

Week of April. 7, 2024 – April. 13, 2024

A WORTHY DISRUPTION: Math teacher Richard Cowles stares up at the eclipse pre-totality with fellow McCallum staff members. For Cowles, yesterday was his first sighting of a total solar eclipse.
“I really enjoyed my viewing of the eclipse,” he said. “It was kind of a bummer that we couldn’t see it as well as we may have wanted, due to the clouds, but it was still good.”
Cowles believes that the group that gathered outside for the viewing third period felt as a community.
“It was fun to have everyone out there,” he said. “There was some eclipse music going on in the background and everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves.”
As a teacher himself, Cowles had his classroom schedule disrupted, but he found it to have been worth it.
“I think it [the eclipse] was worthy of our time,” Cowles said. “It was a very unique event, and it’s rare that we have opportunities like this where we can go out and teachers don’t have to be as much of an administrative force.”
Caption by JoJo Barnard. Photo by Sophia Manos

Week of March. 31, 2024 – April. 6, 2024

A SHINING MOMENT FOR THE KNIGHTS: After the McCallum Varsity Girls Soccer Knights defeated the Cedar Creek Pirates in a sweeping 7-5 win, they secured their ticket to continue on in playoffs. The Knights were met with their next opponents, the Magnolia Bulldogs, at the UIL 5A Region 3 Girls Soccer Area Playoffs. The Knights played the Bulldogs and finished the game off with a narrow 1-0 win.
According to senior Madi Briggs, winning the game not only felt accomplished, but gave the team confidence going forward in playoffs.
“Our district is very competitive, so beating bigger teams boosted our confidence,” Briggs said. “From the win we gained a lot of confidence because we now knew we could beat teams that think they’re ahead of us.”
By the end of the game, the Knights secured defeat against the Bulldogs calling for celebration according to Briggs.
“As a captain it felt great grabbing the trophy,” Briggs said. “It made me realize being captain helped me lead the team to where we are today.”
Briggs reflects upon her senior season commemorating the team’s Area win, and appreciating the games it’s taken the team to get to that point in the season.
“Our season was very memorable because of the connection our team had,” Briggs said. “We bonded very well and that bond showed on the field.”
Knowing each game could be her last, the game against the Bulldogs was especially memorable for Briggs, giving her more time to pursue soccer her senior year.
“I have definitely made the most memories this year out of my four years playing soccer for McCallum,” Briggs said. “This win was a big deal for the team because we knew the power our team had. People doubted us and didn’t think we had the chance to pass onto round two, and I like to think that motivated us more.”
With the win against the Bulldogs, the Knights would move up to play the Georgetown Eagles. The progress in playoffs according to Briggs allowed the team to feel everything they put into the season paid off and got them to this point.
“I hope the team carries on their connection that we learned to gain this year,” Briggs said. “Soccer isn’t an individual sport, so you have to have a good build up with your team.”
Caption by Chloe Lewcock. Photo by Emerson Merrit.

Week of March. 24, 2024 – March. 30, 2024

As part of AISD’s week-long celebration of PRIDE, students of the McCallum Spectrum Club worked to create a week full of activities, prizes and helping hands to support the school’s LGBTQ+ community. The club is widely available for anyone to join, and specializes in creating a safe space for students to share and give advice. While Pride month itself isn’t until June, AISD designates one week in March to celebrate and commemorate the importance of this part of the student body.
As part of the week of festivities, the club held a booth in the front hall handing out pride stickers, pins and merch to passers by. For junior Zane Joly, the booth idea was brought up as a way for students to engage with one another, and connect with the community.
“I call out to people in the halls, ‘hey, do you want stickers?’” Joly said. “We just give out free pride stickers and sometimes other free pride merch to the students of Macallum because everybody likes pride stickers.”
While the week itself is packed with a variety of different activities, the overall goal is to bring students closer together and create a safer environment for self expression at McCallum.
“The idea for the student panel largely came from the black [history] student panel that is done during Black History Month,” Joly said. “And the idea for giving out free stuff was developed at Spectrum last year.”
Joly is not only a member of the Spectrum club, but also holds a leadership position giving them a more hands-on role with the projects and Pride Week activities.
“McCallum has a very high queer population,” Joly said. “I think It’s nice that we get a chance to celebrate Pride because Pride Month is during the summer, and I think it’s just a nice thing for the community and getting to just celebrate it.”
While the merch table at lunch was only a small part of the numerous parts of McCallum’s Pride week, for Joly this small impact made all the difference.
“The purpose of Pride is to make people not feel alone and to make them feel safe,” Joly said. “The goal is [to make people] happy about a part of themselves that they’re often conditioned to not feel good about.”
Caption by Chloe Lewcock. Photo by Shila Gill.

Week of March. 17, 2024 – March. 23, 2024

DIRECTOR ON THE SET: Theatre teacher Bonnie Brookby inspects the set during an early rehearsal for She Stoops to Conquer on Feb. 17. Brookby thinks the opportunity to perform the show in front of a live community audience was very helpful for the cast and crew. “It’s as much about sharing kind of our process and the just the uniqueness of this production, as it is the production itself, which is still a lot of fun,” Brookby said. “Plus I’m really grateful for the chance to have some rehearsals in front of an audience because it’s a comedy. Until you really hear the audience laughing and get that energy, it’s not the same.” She Stoops to Conquer took the stage for round two of the One Act Play on Tuesday March 19 at the AISD Preforming Arts Center in Mueller and advanced to round 3: the bi-district competition. The cast won four awards at tonight’s performance. Will Bowman and Joseph Blackwood were named to the all-star cast, and Lucy Sternberg earned honorable mention all-cast. Carson Bragg was named to the honor crew. Caption by Maya Tackett. Photo by Beatrix Lozach.

Week of March. 10, 2024 – March. 16, 2024

SENIORS AND SAMBA: On March 6 the boys varsity soccer team beat the Travis Rebels 4-0 at House Park.
The game was also the team’s senior night, and fittingly senior Luka Alvarez was the first to score for the Knights with a free kick that found the back of the net. The other three goals of the game were scored by juniors Austin Gourrier, Speight Twohey, and Henry Plum.
All of the players from the class of 2024 were able to get playing time, as noted by head coach Nick Martin.
“I’m happy all the seniors got to have a lot of good minutes out on the field tonight,” Martin said. “They’re good guys who have worked hard and served the program for years.”
Alvarez said that the game went great, specifically a great senior night.
“Scoring on senior night was definitely something special,” Alvarez said. “It also felt like that goal set the mood of the match.”
He said that the team dominated the first half, though it wasn’t reflected in the halftime score.
“In the second half, we converted on more chances,” Alvarez said. “But most importantly, the whole team had fun on senior night.”
In addition to the occasion of senior night, this game also featured a special appearance from the Samba Knights. The percussion group, directed by band teacher Ryan Pride, performed at the game’s halftime.
The Knights defeated Eastside 6-1 in the team’s final game of the regular season this past Saturday at Nelson Field. The team will play East View at their stadium on March 26 at 7:15 p.m. to mark the first game of the postseason.
Caption by Camilla Vandegrift. Photo by Ruby Laware.

Week of March. 3, 2024 – March. 9, 2024

Freshman Paityn Jones speaking during sixth period. Jones spoke from the heart during all three sessions, speaking about code-switching, the difficulty of being the only Black student in some of her classes and on the comforting influence of having Black teachers. “It’s really good to be able to share my truth and hear other students’ truths,” Jones said. Photo by Chloe Lewcock.

Week of Feb. 25, 2024 – March. 2, 2024

A LEAP OF FAITH: Catherine Haikola, junior lieutenant on Blue Brigade, performs with Gaby Alvarado in the officer’s contemporary routine this past weekend at their contest. The team spent most of their competition day changing in and out of costumes, drilling their dances and then, performing.
“While I’m dancing, I’m trying to remember all of the things we talked about [during practice] in order to perfect all of our routines,” Haikola said.
She, as well as the rest of Blue Brigade, loves the team bonding, awards ceremony and dancing with her teammates throughout the day. However, Haikola also described feeling inspired by the impressive talent the other schools showcased during the contest.
“My favorite part of the day was getting to watch other teams dance and seeing their cool pieces,” she said,”I hope next year we do as amazing as we did this year.”
The officer contemporary routine received first runner up in their division, a fulfilling way to finish their contest season.
Caption by Harper Maxwell. Photo by Harper Maxwell

Week of Feb. 18, 2024 – Feb. 24, 2024

ICE CREAM QUEEN: Sophomore Cozbi Sims strikes a pose at the top of the runway as she models junior Reyn Linder’s outfit at the annual McCallum fashion show on Saturday.
Sims was introduced to the fashion show by her friend, but didn’t know who she was going to model for. However, after meeting Linder and seeing her designs, Sims was excited to start the process.
“For me, it was a little nerve-wracking at first, but then it was actually easy and chill most of the time,” Sims said. “It wasn’t overly stressful until we started to get closer to the show.”
For Sims, the best part of the show was being able to perform in front of many people and all the behind-the-scenes work that went on.
“The best part was when I went up there and was like ‘oh this wasn’t as bad as I thought,’” Sims said. “When I was walking down that aisle and everyone was cheering for me, it was pretty nice. I was scared, especially with all the anticipation, but that all went away when I got onto the stage. Performing and getting ready was also such a fun part.”
The outfit reminded Sims of the Candyland ice cream section of the board, so she made sure to incorporate that into her walk.
“When I was wearing [the dress], I was thinking about how I’m kinda a fancy, ice cream queen, which influenced me to keep my head up high,” Sims said.
While this was her first interaction with the fashion show, because of how much she loved to be a part of it, Sims looks forward to being in it for the next two years.
Caption by Maya Tackett. Photo by Chloe Lewcock

Week of Feb. 11, 2024 – Feb. 17, 2024

KING OF THE COFFEEHOUSE: Senior King Perez Cude strums his guitar while performing alongside his band, OOGWEI. Inspired by Grand Master Oogway of DreamWorks’ “Kung Fu Panda,” their setlist was just as eclectic as their name.
“We couldn’t decide on one song,” Perez Cude said. “We pulled [ideas] from just jamming beforehand and finding new combos of songs. We played the intro to a song called ‘Temple Of Light’ into ‘Strut,’ into ‘Extremely Wicked,’ into the end of a song called ‘I Will Neutralize.’”
Although OOGWEI only formed in Nov., its musicians are no strangers to the stage. Perez Cude and both of his bandmates, bassist Oscar Morales and drummer Jack Strüb, are all multi-band musicians. For Perez Cude, being in both bands Facade and OOGWEI hasn’t tired his love of making and performing music.
“We’ve been writing and recording a ton. We are going to be booking more once we get these demos out,” Perez Cude said. “We just love playing at any opportunity.”
Caption by Caroline Owen. Photo by Morgan Eye

Week of Feb. 4, 2024 – Feb. 10, 2024

SHOUTING FOR A SALVĒ. During last Friday’s elective fair, junior Elyza Bradsby welcomed students to the Latin booth with a grin. As a Latin three student, Bradsby wanted to share her love for the language in class and show how much she cares for it.
“I definitely got way more into it than I thought I was going to,” Bradsby said. “At one point I was screaming my head off, it was really fun.”
Bradsby enjoyed being able to talk to people about the class and give more information on the details of the course.
“I think I’ve convinced a couple of people,” Bradsby said. “[My favorite thing is] how unserious it is. It’s so fun, the community is so great and in my opinion it’s the easiest of the language classes.”
With people circulating the table throughout the entire fair, Bradsby hopes to grow the enrollment in Latin for next year because of her enjoyment of the material, community and environment.
Caption by Callen Romell. Photo by Dave Winter

Week of Jan. 28, 2024 – Feb. 3, 2024

AN EVEN MATCH: Senior Caroline passes the ball down the field during the game against LASA last Wednesday. Earlier in the game, Owen scored McCallum’s sole goal by heading in a corner kick taken by senior Kat Klein. The game concluded with a 1-1 tie.
Owen knew that her competition would be fierce before the game even started.
“LASA is at a higher level than most of the teams we play,” Owen said. “This game was harder mentally because we’re not used to playing such close games.”
Even though her team didn’t necessarily win, Owen is glad to not have had to walk home with a loss. 
“I’m glad we got the first round against them out of the way without a loss because next time we’ll know what to expect,” she said. 
Caption by JoJo Barnard. Photo by Julia Copas

Week of Jan. 21, 2024 – Jan.27, 2024

TO THE BEAT OF THEIR OWN DRUM: Senior King Perez plays the drums with his band, Red River Trucking Co. at Thursday’s Battle of the Bands.
The band had plans to play “Red River Line” as well as a new song they had been working on, “Road Dog Fever,” but later decided to add “12 Gauge Shotgun” and “Lawbreakin’ Man.”
“We chose the first two because they’re newer and we feel like they’ve come together and are a good representation of us now,” Perez said.
Perez shared that the band performed well overall and that the audience’s reaction was the best pay off.
“My most memorable moment from that night was seeing everyone jumping off the stage and moshing,” he said. “It is always awesome seeing people enjoy our music in that way.”
Caption by Gaby Esquivel. Photo by Julia Copas

Week of Jan. 14, 2024 – Jan. 20, 2024

KNIGHTS’ TRIUMPH: Seniors Henry Mayes and Ben Zacharias celebrate after the Knights beat LBJ, 56-28, to start off district play with a big rivalry win. Mayes had a big game as he scored 13 points during the game. “The LBJ games are always really intense,” Mayes said. “There are a lot of emotions from both the coaches and the players,” Mayes said. The Knights haven’t beaten LBJ at their home since February 2008, a span of almost 16 years. “Everyone wants to beat LBJ, so we felt a lot more confident about our future district play after beating them,” Mayes said. Photo by David Herring.

Week of Jan. 7, 2024 – Jan. 13, 2024

JV KNIGHTS 28, RAPTORS 20 – The junior varsity girls basketball team took on the LASA Raptors on Tuesday, Dec. 12, winning 28-20. Coming off a previous district win against the Navarro Vikings, sophomore Riley Norris thought the tempo of the game was slow, causing the game to be low-scoring. “I think the game went alright, definitely could’ve been better though,” Norris said. According to Norris, part of this was due to the Raptors’ lateness in arriving to the game, which led to a game being played with a running clock. She added that pressing more on defense and plaving at a faster pace could have also led to a bigger margin of victory. “We could’ve had better defense and applied more pressure on offense and defense,” Norris said. In the big picture, however, she said the game as a whole wasn’t bad. “We were getting past their full-court press pretty easily and communicated a lot,” Norris said Norris and the team hopes to take these positive attributes into the rest of district play and into their next district game tonight on the road against LBJ next Tuesday (weather permitting). The team is off tonight, but the varsity plays Northeast on Teacher Appreciation Knight. Tipoff is at 6 p.m. and honored teachers will be recognized before the game. Reporting by Maya Tackett. Photo by Lillian Gray.

Week of Dec. 31, 2023 – Jan. 6, 2024

A DUEL AT DUSK: After receiving a pass from a teammate, freshman defender Maya Garwood tries to bring the ball under control about 30 yards from the Nederland goal. Garwood told MacJ afterward that she felt she was fouled on the play. The Knights defeated the Bulldogs, 4-1, on Jan. 5, thanks to four goals scored by Garwood’s teammate, senior Sarah Hauck. “The team we played was aggressive, so it was a good win,” Garwood said. “We worked well to get the ball forward and communicated.” The win was part of the Knights’ participation in the Blue Bell tournament in Brenham. The Knights lost their other two games in the tournament, which was more about preparation for the district season than worrying about the scoreboard. “It was an adjustment,” Garwood said of the tournament. “We hadn’t practiced a lot before [the tournament] and didn’t know everyone well, but it definitely made us better.” Photo by Julia Copas.
ROLES REVERSED: Late in the second half of a 61-34 home win over Crockett on Jan. 2, the Knight bench and coaching staff cheers with abandon because reserve player Carter Chick converted an offensive rebound into a layup for his first points of the season. For starter Henry Mayes, No.10, cheering for Chick was a reversal of roles that he relished. “Carter is, in the best way, the loudest player on the bench and starts team chants every single time,” Mayes said. “He is without a doubt the best team player and genuinely always happy to be with the rest of the guys. His energy is very contagious on the court. I always feel a lot more confident when I can hear my teammates cheering for me, but Carter’s is definitely the voice you’ll hear screaming from the bench.” Mayes was quick to credit the coaching staff for creating a culture where the team plays with high energy and consistent effort. “The Knights have a great mentality to play until the final buzzer no matter what the scoreboard reads,” Mayes said. The scoreboard has been a pretty good read for McCallum this season. The Knights remain undefeated in district play at 13-0 and need only to secure a win against 3-8 Northeast next Tuesday to complete a perfect district season and claim their first district title in 13 years. Photo by Julia Copas.
With a solid roster of returning team members, experienced coaches and an addition of many new teammates, the wrestling team finds itself in a strong position for district competition. With 10 meets behind them, the team is building the experience they need for more difficult competitions after winter break. Head wrestling coach Richard Salazar feels the team is set up for a promising season. “I’m happy with our season thus far,” he said. “We are pretty much halfway through the season and continue to make progress with every practice and match. Like most athletic/ competitive endeavors, our goal is to win every match and bring a district championship back to McCallum and to advance and place at the state wrestling tournament on Feb. 16 and 17. An introduction of new wrestlers to the team may be just the thing the team needs to achieve this goal. “This year we have had several of the younger football players join us after the football season, and it has really helped or team grow,” he said. “They have brought with them a greater sense of competitiveness and a greater intensity to our team To read Lillian Gray’s complete story about the wrestling team’s outlook as it approaches its district meet, please click the link in our bio or visit ABOUT THE PHOTO: Sophomore London Taylor wrestles at the Anderson duel meet on Nov. 8. Photo by Ez Zachery.

Week of Dec. 23, 2023 – Dec. 30, 2023

KNOLL WAY OUT: Senior Ellie Knoll tries to create space for a cross during the Knights’ 8-0 victory over Manor in a preseason scrimmage on Tuesday Dec. 12 at Manor. Junior Ashley Mankinen said that while she was pleased with the road team’s performance and energy, the Knights also discovered areas where they could improve. “I think that the team played pretty well,” Mankinen said. “Overall, I thought we did a good job of matching the aggressiveness of Manor, but there were times when I think we could’ve moved the ball around a little quicker.” Maintaining high energy and focus is the goal, Mankinen said, no matter what the scoreboard says or what energy level the opposing team is putting out. Photo by Julia Copas.

Week of Dec. 17, 2023 – Dec. 23, 2023

For the first time in … well we honestly don’t know how long … the boys varsity basketball team beat the LBJ Jaguars at LBJ on Dec. 5.
The decisiveness of the 56-28 final score made the long-awaited road victory more emphatic and satisfying.
While senior Henry Mayes knew the game against LBJ would be challenging, doubling up the Jags wasn’t expected.
“We started off with nerves,” Mayes said. “We put up some strange shots to start the game, but once we got into the flow and played what we practiced it all worked out.”
The teams were tied at 10 at the end of the first quarter, but in the second and third quarters, the Knights blew the game open, outscoring their hosts, 33-12 over that span to take a 21-point lead into the fourth quarter.
Blowing out LBJ is a marked departure from the series history between the two teams. According to Mayes, past matchups between the Jags and Knights have been tense. Last year, the Knights ended an 11-year drought with a win over the Jags at home.
“LBJ has always been a big rival for us,” Mayes said. “When we can’t root against Anderson we root against LBJ.”
Mayes says that team consistency was a major contributor to the game’s outcome.
“We’ve been working hard all off-season,” Mayes said. “And we certainly came in with energy and lots of pressure on defense and that got us the win.”
The game, while a victory for the whole team, was also a personal success for Maves who scored 13 points to lead the team.
Mayes said his success on the court comes from building chemistry off of it.
“Making a better connection with the coach and with my teammates, building that trust, helps with opportunities to score more,” Mayes said.
After the game, senior point guard Finn Corrigan took to the Internet to find out the last time the Knights had won a boys varsity basketball game at LBJ. Whenever it was, it was before MaxPreps started archiving scores.
If anybody has a clue of the answer or how to find it, please let us know.
The Knights defeated Eastside on Friday to run their district record to a perfect 4-0. After they take their last final exams in the morning, they travel to Travis on Wednesday to battle the Rebels. Photo by David Herring. Caption by Naomi Di-Capua.


Week of Dec. 10, 2023 – Dec. 16, 2023

ETHERIAL CONNECTIONS: While performing for middle school dancers last week, the McCallum youth Dance Company connected with younger dancers.
Mac dancers opened the showcase with a piece called “Etherial” which was choreographed by Terrance Carson.
Dancers leaped at the chance to form bonds with the Lamar dancers, the ones they may share a locker room with in a few years.
Sophomore Corinne Hampton believes that talented dancers such as the Lamar Youth Dance Company dancers should have a group like the Mac dancers to look up to.
“I think it’s really great that middle schoolers get excited about the communities they might be a part of.”
The opportunity to be a part of the Youth dance company at Mac is something students from Lamar and beyond look forward to throughout middle school.
Caption by Maggie Mass. (Dave Winter)

Week of Dec. 3, 2023 – Dec. 9, 2023

SENIOR SOLO: Senior Naomi Di-Capua sings “Losing my Mind” from the musical “Follies” during a solo performance. Because she is not planning to pursue music in college, Di-Capua felt the need to go all out and audition for a solo. Out of over 60 auditions for solos, duets and small groups, only 17 made it into the show, one of which was Di-Capua.
“It was really rewarding to know that I made it past auditions,” Di-Capua said.
Auditioning was just the first step for Di-capua, though. She still had to perform in front of a large audience–for multiple nights–which came with its own difficulties.
“Just getting up on stage and performing was a huge accomplishment for me because I have struggled with performance anxiety for a while,” she said. “So walking away from it I’m just really proud I was able to overcome something that I had previously struggled with.”
Di-Capua’s struggle with stage fright wasn’t the only problem she came across; she also had to alter her song of choice to fit her vocal range. The song, typically sung by altos, was not going to work for her; a soprano one. To combat this issue, she had to sing the song in a completely different key.
“The song is typically sung by older, alto-y, musical-theater singers, which is definitely not me,” Di-Capua said. “So honestly the hardest part of the whole process was transposing it into a higher key while managing the warmth of the piece.”
Caption by JoJo Barnard. Photo by Francesca Dietz.

Week of Nov. 26, 2023 – Dec. 2, 2023

SENIOR SOLO: Senior Aubrey Mitchell plays a solo on the Alto sax during the song “Off the Hook.” Unlike a typical solo, Mitchell’s was improvised.
“I love the opportunity to solo on a song,” Mitchell said. “It makes me feel really alive and excited. I just love to perform.”
For Mitchell, the performance was her favorite part of the night.
“We [the jazz band] just flow so well together, and feed off each other’s energy,” she said. “Also, Ms. Nelson is an exceptional director and she makes you feel welcome to be on the stage.”
Mitchell enjoys performing not only for the thrill, but also the opportunity to express herself.
“The fine arts program gave me the opportunity to shine and discover myself through music,” Mitchell said. “I express myself through and learn about music any chance I get.”
Caption by JoJo Barnard. Photo by Sophie Leung-Lieu

Week of Nov. 19, 2023 – Nov. 25, 2023

KNIGHTS 47, MUSTANGS 46: Less than two minutes remained in a very physical girls varsity basketball game in the Mac gym on Nov. 7. Visiting Marble Falls held a six-point lead and high hopes of spoiling the host Knights’ home opener. That’s when head coach Carly Kehn dialed up some full-court pressure, the Knights made it pay off. DiGiovanni stole the ball once and converted a layup to cut the Mustang lead to four. With 1:17 remaining, she stole the ball again, and secured two foul shots when she was hacked trying to make a second short shot. That possession cut the Mustang lead to two. “We pressed at the end, which led to defensive stops and quick shots,” she told Mac matter-of-factly. After the Mustangs made one foul shot to push their lead to three, DiGiovanni appeared to make a game-tying three-point shot, but the refs ruled that her foot was on the line, so the Mustangs clung to a one-point lead at 36-35. Junior point guard my Chen claimed that same narrow margin for the home team by getting to the freethrow line and calmly converting one free throw to tie the game and another to win it, 37-36. What started with DiGiovanni’s thievery and ended with Chen’s clutch foul shooting-an 8-1 run to end the game-gave the Knights’ an exhilarating victory to christen their home gym for the start of the 2023-2024 season. DiGiovanni attributes the close win to successful defensive stops. “We had really good defensive stops throughout the game, which led to our offense pushing in transition,” DiGiovanni said. “We stayed in control towards the end even as it became a very physical game.” The Knights overcame a subpar shooting night (33% field goal percentage) by creating 18 steals during the game. The extra possessions proved pivotal to the win.
Caption by Nate Williams. Photo by Veronica Jones.

Week of Nov. 12, 2023 – Nov. 18, 2023

A STATE FINALE: Senior David Herring competed at the UIL Cross-Country State Championship Nov. 3 at Old Settlers Park. Herring, in his final cross country meet as a Mac runner, placed 51st out of 150 runners in the 5A boys division, timing in at 16:28.40. “The race felt pretty good for me,” Herring said. “It was just very different because I was running on my own and without a team. It’s so different from other races we do throughout the season because everyone is just so close together throughout the entire race.” With many of Herring’s teammates showing up to support hir at his 5K race, Herring said he felt relaxed and was able to keep his nerves down. “Usually I can be tense on the starting line and anxious, but this time I was pretty relaxed and was just thinking about how it was my last race,” Herring said. While Herring was not able to complete his final goal of the season: to break the McCallum boys’ 5K record, he was able to get within seconds of that standard and plans to come back stronger during the track-and-field season. He said he was moved by the outpouring of support he received before and during the race. “Friends from my church youth group came and supported me during the race and lots of people from the [Mac] team came out,” Herring said. “I got a lot of texts and messages before my race wishing me good luck, so it was exciting to have everyone there during the race.” Caption by Nate Wiliams. Photo by Lillian Gray.

Week of Nov. 5, 2023 – Nov. 11, 2023

FLASH ON THE FIELD: Senior Henry Zabala takes a swing at being the flash for a very special halloween-themed baseball practice. The holiday not only took place in the halls of McCallum, but also in the dugout and field.
Zabala’s costume inspiration stems from an admiration for the Flash TV show, which has been on Henry’s mind since he started watching it.
“I got really into the show so I decided to dress up as him [Flash],” Zabala said.
The annual baseball tradition is a favorite of the team, but it also causes some technical difficulties with costumes.
“Some teammates’ costumes interfered with our throwing and hitting,” Zabala said. “But we still had a lot of fun.”
The scrimmage tested the players as well as taught them to appreciate each other’s company in a less pressured environment.
“We all pretty much just enjoyed each other’s company and had fun whether we won or lost,” Zabala said.
Caption by Maggie Mass. Photo by J. Frank Webster.

Week of Oct. 29, 2023 – Nov. 4, 2023

Junior Luke Dunham sprints down the field, ball in hand. Dunham’s huge rushing day won the Battle of the Bell for the Knights as he scored all five Knights touchdowns on quarterback runs, which more than made up for three turnovers on interceptions. Photo by Julia Copas.
A QUEEN AND HER COURT: After executing a textbook 10-foot line overpass kill to make the score 20-17 in the fourth and final set of the Knights’ 3-1 win over host Cedar Creek in the bi-district round of the 5A state playoffs, junior hitter Greta Carlson unleashes a scream as her teammates around her leap to the rafters in celebration. “I was feeling really happy and confident in that moment because I knew we were about to be bi-district champions,” Carlson said. Carlson played one of the best games of her Knight career in the Oct. 30 playoff match. Teammate Lexi Rosenblatt called her “unstoppable,” and she set a career-high for kills in a match with 25. If you are wondering what a 10-foot line overpass kills is, don’t feel too bad. We wondered too. An overpass is when a player spikes the ball on the first touch after the other team plays the ball over the net. A 10-foot line kill is when the kill lands inside her opponents’ 10-foot line. You have to sky pretty high to do it because you are basically hitting the ball directly down just beyond the net. It’s like the volleyball version of a slam dunk and Carlson and her teammates acted accordingly. Getting tantalizing close to the team’s second straight bi-district title might also have had something to do with the jubilant celebration. Photo by Julia Copas.
RED ZONE RUN AGAINST A RED FOE: After breaking a tackle to extend the run, Knight running back Jorge Aldape advances the ball 15 yards inside the Travis 20-yard line. The play put the Knights inside the red zone and prompted the Rebels to call a timeout to reset their defense. “I went to the sideline and hyped up the team,” Aldape said. “I felt that because of my run we ended up scoring on that drive.” Quarterback Luke Dunham finished the drive with a rushing touchdown for the first points of the 2023 Battle of the Bell, the rivalry game between McCallum and Travis that dates back 70 years to 1953. The Knights struggled to put Travis away in this edition of the rivalry game. The Knights trailed 14-10 late in the first half until Marc Sanchez forced a late second quarter fumble inside the Rebel 10-yard line, which led to another Dunham touchdown run that gave the Knights a lead they would not surrender the rest of the way. Travis kept it close, pulling to within four points heading into the fourth quarter before the Knights pulled away to win 35-24.“It’s always a physical game,” said Dunham, who made up for three interceptions with five rushing touchdowns. “There’s a lot of pride in keeping the bell.” The win was McCallum’s 13th straight win in the series. With realignment, the teams won’t play as district opponents in 2024, but Aldape says he hopes the series will continue. “I would like to play them for the Battle of the Bell to keep the tradition going,” he said. Photo by Julia Copas.
EYES ON THE PRIZE: Every Knight in this image, the ones on the court, the ones on the bench and even Coach Brodbeck in the far left corner all stare intently at the ball with laser focus as a Cedar Creek middle blocker turns and tips the ball just over the net to the Knights’ side of the court during the fourth and final set of the Knights’ 3-1 bi-district playoff win at Cedar Creek on Oct. 30. “It was a really close game, and we were kind of going point for point,” sophomore setter Lexi Rosenblatt said. “Cedar Creek’s blocking had been strong so we were all trying to cover really well.” Neither Rosenblatt or middle hitter Greta Carlson could remember for sure who won this point, but Rosenblatt said it probably was a point for the Knights: “I’d like to think we won on a kill to end a long rally.” We would like that too as it would make the photo even more epic, but what we can say for sure is that it was late in a match that the Knights would win to advance to the area playoffs. The Knights played poorly in dropping the first set but rallied from there. “We woke up,” Rosenblatt said. “It was such a fun competitive game. Everyone was going 100 percent the whole time, and I remember Greta being just unstoppable that match. It was such a great feeling to get that [bi-district] title for the second year in a row after working so hard the whole season.” It was doubly satisfying for Rosenblatt who missed the end of her freshman season due to injury and watched her team finish an undefeated district season and advance in the playoff from the bench. “It was an unfortunate end to my freshman season,” Rosenblatt said, “but I do think that made winning it again this year all the more special, especially getting to be a leader on this team this year.” Photo by Julia Copas.

Week of Oct. 22, 2023 – Oct. 28, 2023

FOOTLOOSE AT LAST: Senior Asher Kay rocks out on the dance floor at the homecoming dance, put on by Student Council. Since the tradition of a homecoming dance fell out of practice after 2019 due to low attendance rates, this was Kay’s first time attending one in all of his four years. Kay felt that the mystery surrounding what the dance would be like added to his experience.
“As a senior it was fun to have at least one homecoming,” Kay said. “Since we had never had one before, and since I haven’t really been to any school dances, I didn’t know what to expect, but when I got there it was cool to see everyone having fun. Hopefully it was a success so they keep doing it and start a new sort of tradition at McCallum.”
Though his first and last homecoming dance has passed, Kay hopes the future classes will continue to put on the dance.
“I think they should keep doing it because it’s a good opportunity for people who may not be super social to talk to new people and have a fun experience outside of school,” Kay said. “But also, it’s good to keep [doing] it because it seemed to be a fun time for everyone.”
Kay enjoyed the dance floor and seeing his peers dressed up in HOCO finery, but noted his favorite part was the photo booth. 
“It was fun with my friends to get photos since it was the only HOCO we’ve been to, so we might as well have something to remember it by,” Kay said.
Caption by Lanie Sepehri. Photo by Julia Copas.

Week of Oct. 15, 2023 – Oct. 21, 2023

SPREADING THE JOY: Sophomore Chim Becker poses with sophomores Cozbi Sims and Lou Davidson while manning a table at the Hispanic Heritage treat day during lunch  of Sept 28. Becker is a part of the students of color alliance, who put together the activity to raise money for their club.
“It [the stand] was really fun because McCallum has a lot of latino kids,” Becker said. “And I think it was nice that I could share the stuff that I usually just have at home with people who have never tried it before.”
Becker recognizes the importance of celebrating Hispanic heritage at Mac.
“I think it’s important to celebrate,” Becker said. “Because our culture is awesome and super cool, and everybody should be able to learn about other cultures of the world.”
Caption by JoJo Barnard. Photo by Beatrix Lozach.

Week of Oct. 8, 2023 – Oct. 14, 2023

WATER BALLOONS AND SMILES: Senior Peer Assistance and Leadership program member Jude Masoni holds up his fellow PAL, senior David Herring, as a human shield to protect himself from the path of an incoming water balloon. Students paid $1 to throw a balloon at the PALS on Tuesday as part of the shooting PAL-ery, one of the Pink Week fundraisers intended to raise money for the Breast Cancer Resource Center of Central Texas, an Austin-based non-profit that provides personalized support to those affected by breast cancer.  Year after year the PALS put on Pink Week in order to raise funds and awareness for the fight against breast cancer. The PALS put on a variety of different events the whole week at lunch in hopes of both bringing in profits and bringing an exciting week of fun to the McCallum community.   
Herring was made a target of the water balloon by his cross country teammates.
“I enjoyed seeing my teammates coming out to donate as I was telling them about it the week prior,” Herring said. “I was also just having fun on that nice day with my fellow PALS. Some of them that did the pallery that day, like Jude, I’ve known since elementary school.”
Caption by Chloe Lewcock with reporting by JoJo Barnard. Photo by Beatrix Lozach.

Week of Oct. 1, 2023 – Oct. 7, 2023

DRESS AND SUCCESS: Sophomore Lilianne Kirby performs ‘I love to cry at weddings’ during Thursday’s Sweet Charity dress rehearsal. According to Kirby, the show took much time to be put together, but the payoff has been worth it. 
“There are rehearsals almost every day which takes up a lot of our free time, but you can tell the people in this production are committed to it,” Kirby said. “In the beginning it seemed a lot messier, but watching the show come together was really cool, and it’s something everyone in sweet charity should feel proud of.”
The production is ensemble driven with full cast numbers like Big Spender and Rich Man’s Frug, which Kirby said is what completes the show.
“Everyone puts in their best effort, and it makes the show amazing,” Kirby said.
Caption by Alice Scott. Photo by Alice Scott.

Week of Sept. 24, 2023 – Sept. 30, 2023

CARLSON CROSSES: Junior Co-captain Greta Carlson hits a cross during last Friday’s game against Ann Richards. At the game, the Knights won the first set 25-15, but the Stars took the second and third set 25-16, and 25-23. After that, the Stars won the fourth and final set, ultimately winning the game for them.
Carlson was disappointed, and felt the team didn’t play to their best ability.
“I knew we could play at a higher level and I felt like we didn’t do that in the game,” Carlson said.
Although the loss was a bit of a setback for the team, it also served as a factor to push them to do better.
”It kind of lights a fire in your blood when you lose to a team you know you could have beat,” Carlson said. “It makes me want to work on what we need to improve on against Ann Richards, so that when we play them again we’ll win.”
Caption by JoJo Barnard. Photo by Dave Winter.

Week of Sept. 17, 2023 – Sept. 23, 2023

STAR(S)STRUCK: In one of the volleyball program’s biggest district matches, the freshmen team beat the Ann Richards Stars 2-1.
The first set was neck and neck for the majority, but the Stars took over towards the end and took the set, 25-17.
The second set was even tougher for the Knights, with more back and forth to keep the score tied for the majority of the set. Late into the set, however, the Knights rallied and won the match by two points, 25-23, and tying the score 1-1.
In the third tiebreaker set, both teams put in all of their effort to score enough points to take the win. Soon though, it looked like the Knights weren’t going to leave the gym victorious.
Putting in all the effort they had left, the Knights managed to get ahead two points and take the final win, 15-13.
The JV Knights are now trying their luck against the Stars, and varsity will play at 8 p.m.
The freshman team gets on the road next Tuesday to play the Anderson Trojans in the annual rivalry game at Anderson.
Tipoff is 5:30.
Caption by Julia Copas. Photo by Julia Copas.

Week of Sept. 10, 2023 – Sept. 16, 2023

RAINY START: After an hour-long delay, the game between the McCallum Knights and Crockett Cougars kicked off, with rain still pouring for half the quarter, ending down 10-7. The Knights unfortunately fumbled on the first play of their drive and the Cougars went on to score a field goal. The Knights were sacked on their following possession and tried for a field goal but it was no good. Crockett wasn’t successful on their next drive and punted to the Knights. Mitchell Butler then had a 44 yard catch to bring the Knights downfield, with a good extra point by Dash Levy. The Cougars answered the Knights’ points with a touchdown of their own. To end the quarter I both teams punted on their next possessions, with Crockett starting with the ball in the second quarter.
Caption by Callen Romell. Photo by Chloe Lewcock

Week of Sept. 3, 2023 – Sept. 9, 2023

Satya Russ digs the ball during the Knights straight-set sweep of host Navarro on Sept. 5. Playing only two sets, junior Greta Carlson recorded 10 of her team’s 25 kills to pace the Knight attack. Junior Jordyn Berger served up 13 aces and recorded eight digs to lead the visiting Knights in those two stat categories. Sophomore Lexi Rosenblatt dished out 17 assists. The Knights earned another road sweep tonight at Eastside following the previous Friday’s epic five-set home win over LASA. The Knights (5-0) are the only team in District 24-5A that remains undefeated in district play. Photo by Julia Copas.


Week of Aug. 27, 2023 – Sept. 2, 2023

RUNNING BACK TO MAC: Senior running back Drew Andrews pushes through Anderson’s defense at the Taco Shack Bowl. Hearing the chants of the McCallum student section from the field, Andrews was motivated to play his best.
“It makes you want to win more just because you want to do it for the entire school,” Andrews said.
As Anderson continued to score, Andrews focused on playing like it was 0-0.
“I was trying to forget about the score and keep trying throughout the entire game, not letting the score bring us down,” Andrews said.
Although Andrews’ high hopes for his senior year Taco Shack were not met, he said he left the field feeling confident about the upcoming season. According to him, the Knights need to focus on teamwork and refining “the little things.”
“I feel a lot more confident now knowing what we need to work on,” Andrews said. “I think we’re gonna build as a team.”
Caption by Ingrid Smith. Photo by Naomi Di Capua.

SPIRIT SHOWDOWN: At KXAN reporter Sean Kelly’s urging the Blue Brigade, cheer and percussion section students assembled outside Taco Shack cheer with enthusiasm to encourage KXAN viewers to vote for McCallum in the online spirit contest vote that at the time was a virtual tie. After a four-year winning streak, however, McCallum lost the vote against Anderson in the KXAN Taco Shack Bowl Spirit Contest by 314 votes out of 28,640 votes cast. During the live broadcast, KXAN announced that McCallum led by 200 votes, but Anderson rallied in the last hour to reverse the vote in its favor. With 50.5 percent of the vote, Anderson won 14,477-14,163. Despite the loss, Blue Brigade senior co-captain Kylie Reeves remains positive about their school spirit this morning. “I thought it was super fun,” Reeves said. “The spirit was there, so it’s kind of sad that we did lose, but everyone tried their best and was spirited throughout the entire morning.” (Julia Copas)

Week of Aug. 20, 2023 – Aug. 26, 2023

Freshmen Reed Alexander, Thomas Witzel, Zach Palafox and senior Zak Burns play their euphoniums together at the annual band showcase, Bandapalooza. Burns noted that in addition to being unusually hot compared to previous years, the unprecedented amount of Mac students who showed up to watch the band also made this year’s performance unique. “Anybody can go, but usually it’s not a lot of school kids,” Burns said. “But for some reason, this year, there were a bunch of people in my grade there.” Burns said that it was interesting to play for an increased number of his peers when the show was still in its early stages. “It was kind of embarrassing,” Burns said. “Because the show, right now, is not good. We were all sweating profusely and it just wasn’t the best. We just learned it, so it’s not clean and it doesn’t sound good. There’s still more to add to what we’ve learned. So we just need more time with it.” Burns has four years of band (and Bandapaloozas) under his belt. He feels his fellow euphoniums, who are mostly freshmen, will develop alongside the show as the year progresses. “They’re still learning,” Burns said. “It’s fun to be [one of the oldest], but it gets kind of annoying because all the volume in my section, sound-wise, comes from me. The rest of them can’t play loud and that gets tiring because you almost pass out. But they have potential. I’m looking forward to them being good.” Caption by Lanie Sepehri. Photo by Julia Copas.

Week of Aug. 13, 2023 – Aug. 19, 2023

Sophomores Luciana Ramirez and Sofia Saucedo walk through the busy halls before the start of classes. For Saucedo the start of sophomore year was easy and straightforward.
“I was expecting almost the same thing as last year,” Saucedo said. “I am expecting more challenging classes than last year and new people.” According to Saucedo the first day provided many highlights. “Seeing all my friends and seeing what classes I have was fun,” Saucedo said. “And also what the year is going to look like” Saucedo has two main things she is looking forward to.
“I am looking forward to soccer and my classes,” Saucedo said. Caption by Naomi Di-Capua. Photo by Dave Winter. 

Week of May 14, 2023 – May 20, 2023

NO VOICE IS TOO SMALL: Junior Teddy Ibsen, the McCallum-specific walkout organizer poses with one of their signs reading “am I next?” 
“Organizing the walkout, it was kind of last-minute,” Ibsen said. “I had only decided to do this yesterday, and this morning I put up flyers.”
Ibsen said the purpose of the walkout was to demand action and show solidarity. 
“We’re in the state capital,” Ibsen said. “We can’t just let this opportunity to help and demand action slip away. It was to show solidarity in the fight for gun control and regulation. It was important because we need to demand action from our state representative, especially because of the House Bill 2744 which raised the age of buying a semiautomatic weapon.”
Due to rumors about AP test scores being canceled if the walkout was too loud, students protested quietly
“I felt empowered, like we as youth can make actual change in our community,” Ibsen said. “That our voices matter, even with the semi-quiet protesting we did.”
To continue their activism, Ibsen wants to start a club that focuses on current issues and civil disobedience. They saw the walkout as a call to action for many. 
“Youth voices can be heard,” Ibsen said. “You can look up what state district you’re in, and email or call your official and urge them to vote the way you want. You can also join protests at the capital, demanding action. No voice is too small to be heard.”
Reporting by Kate Boyle. Photo by Gergő Major.

Week of May 7, 2023 – May 13, 2023

Freshman audience member Sam Morse and senior Ballet Folkorico troupe member Abraham Torres participate in the “fun group dance” that brought a close to the Cinco de Mayo show in the MAC on Friday. Each Ballet Folklórico member went out into the crowd and found a volunteer to join them on stage for the closing number of the show. “The crowd seemed to really enjoy the audience participation dance that we closed with,” said Juana Gun, the event organizer and the sponsor of Ballet Folklórico. Caption by Dave Winter. Photo by Dave Winter.

Week of April 30, 2023 – May 6, 2023

Junior Ellie Loudermilk poses with her “herd.” In the musical, the trio went through many hardships together, all for the sake of saving their fellow farm friend: Betsy-May.
“Being in the trio was so much fun,” Loudermilk said. “In some parts, he [Anderson Zoll] would give us a random beat, and we would riff off of each other. We’d even make up our own little harmonies.”
Even though the production was a big commitment, Loudermilk claims the hard work was well worth it.
“I’d say the musical was very successful,” Loudermilk said. “It was really cool to watch it all come together.”
Because Cows: the Moosical was the first student-led play Loudermilk has been a part of, she said the show was special.
“The best part was that we were all kids who were super excited about what we were doing,” Loudermilk said, “and we put the show all together with no supervision, which I thought was pretty impressive.”
Caption by JoJo Barnard. Photo by Lanie Sepheri.

Week of April 23, 2023 – April 29, 2023

Seniors Khi Washington and Zada Cook share a laugh in their similarly colored outfits beside the “2023” sign at their senior prom. Despite the similarity in their attire, the reflection was sheer coincidence, and the two had not attended prom as each other’s dates.
“We had pulled up to our friend Scarlett’s house to take pictures and had not planned what we were wearing,” Washington said. “The fact that we looked like we were going as a pair just goes to show how similar we are in our taste in things.”
Furthering the coincidence, Washington had customized his prom outfit himself.
“I had bought the piece as a white skirt with gold accents and I changed it to be the complete opposite,” Washington said. “I had dyed it, replaced the buttons and brought it in more [at the waist]. I added my own components like the socks with the bows, and the shoes were my favorite thing about it.”
Washington and Cook attended prom with a larger group, but they shared a deeper connection. Originally meeting briefly in middle school, the two rekindled their friendship in their freshman year math class. Now, over three years later, they are twinning at prom.
“We have always had this almost brother and sister relationship, very ‘Cloak and Dagger,’” Washington said.
Washington attended last year’s prom with a senior date but felt that attending prom as a senior was much more significant.
“Prom this year felt totally different, and I felt more involved than I did as a junior going to prom,” Washington said. “Everything was much more meaningful, and I felt that the group I went with was very inviting.”
Nearing the end of their high school career, Washington dubbed prom as the “party before the goodbye.”
“I feel like there are so many events [before graduation] where I will see these people again like Powderpuff and all of those other out-of-school events,” Washington said. “I feel like graduation is going to be the big goodbye. Prom was basically the preview of the goodbye. Graduation is going to be a party in itself.”
For Washington, the illuminated “2023” sign displayed at prom signified the shared experiences of his class.
“I felt like [Prom 2023] represents everything we have been through as a class and how we have gotten to this point in our high school careers. This represents our moment, something that is so meaningful to us at this point in our lives that we will look back on when we are older and say ‘that was our prom.”
Caption by Morgan Eye. Photo by J. Frank Webster

Week of April 16, 2023 – April 22, 2023

Senior Maddie Hello danced her self-choreographed senior solo to Real Love by Big Thief.
“I was definitely feeling very nervous because I really wanted it to be a good performance but I was also feeling very relieved that all the work I had put into it was paying off,” Hello said.
Hello didn’t attach specific meaning to the solo as a whole, but had an overarching sentiment that she wanted people to see.
“I really just wanted it to feel very me if that makes sense,” Hello said. “Just kinda like a dance people could look at and tell that it was mine.”
It took time to create a dance that was uniquely “her” though.
“It took about a month to choreograph but I ended up almost completely redoing it the week of the show because I’d gotten tired of what I came up with,” Hello said. “The process wasn’t super difficult besides that because I was able to pull movements I liked from previous dances I’d done with Blue Brigade, and because I started with a song I knew I loved it was easy to come up with movements that matched the music.”
Overall, Hello saw the show as a way to say goodbye to dance and her teammates in Blue Brigade.
“It was a really really weird feeling knowing that I might never see a lot of the people who I’ve seen every day for years very soon,” Hello said. “It was also really weird cause dancing has been my main hobby since I was really young and since I’m not pursuing it in college, I sort of risk losing the opportunity to dance as often.”
Through a speech and dance Hello was able to express how much the team meant to her.
“The show was a really nice way to end my time on the team,” Hello said. “I was able to tell everyone how thankful I am to have gotten to know them through my speech and then end it all off with dancing all together one last time. I’m just really thankful for the opportunity to dance with people I love. It really makes the hard work worth it.” Caption by Kate Boyle. Photo by Francie Wilhelm.

Week of April 9, 2023 – April 15, 2023

As she dances in her beautiful dress, sophomore Amy Love reflects on the joy it brings to see her father so happy during the McCallum Quinceañera. “I think that this event was really beautiful and fun to experience especially for my dad, seeing him so happy and having my family experience this,” Love said. “My family isn’t big on doing huge celebrations so me and my sister weren’t able to have a quinceañera, but we loved being able to share this day with all the other quinceañeras and their families.” Despite the stress of daily meetings and practices leading up to the event, Love found it all worth it for the fun and memories made on the quinceañera day. “It was really stressful doing the whole entire meetings and practice because it was every single day, but whenever it was the actual day of it, it was actually really fun,” Love said. Overall, Love found the quinceañera event to be a very meaningful experience, which could not have happened without the hard work of Spanish teacher Juana Gun. “I want to give a huge thank you to Ms. Gun for making it all possible and being such a sweet person to all of us,” Love said. Caption by Gergő Major. Photo by Gergő Major.

Week of April 2, 2023 – April 8, 2023

Freshman Luke Bell, who raced in the varsity 100- and 200-meter dashes, the 800-meter relay and the long jump, pointed out that the competition in Elgin was challenging but not a reflection of the competition the Knights will face at the district meet.
“A lot of the schools we were going against were very challenging and not in our district, and running against juniors and seniors as a freshman on varsity is very challenging but motivating,” Bell said. “At district, I’m hoping to get points to help our team win.”
Sophomore Ka’Aron Lewis placed second out of 32 in the varsity 100-meter dash with a time of 12.32. Lewis also took home first place in the long jump, flying 19-05.50. Freshman Max Fullerton clocked in at 54.77 in the 400-meter dash to take eighth place. Junior David Herring placed fifth in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:08.79 and fourth place in the 1,600-meter, finishing in 4:40.86.
Herring said that the meet offered a learning curve due to the unusual weather conditions and the need to prepare for districts.
“My races overall went pretty well as I matched both of my PRs for the 1.600 and the 800. The meet had some of the worst wind I’ve ever raced in.”
Herring is looking forward to the district meet and qualifying for area and region.
“I’m hoping to get first in the 3,200 and 1,600 as well as a PR in the 1,600,” Herring said.
For the junior varsity division, In the 200-meter dash, freshman Jax Hicks ran a 24.82 to place third out of 25. Freshman Evans Thayer came in ninth place in the 300-meter hurdles with a time of 51.07.
While the boys team found much of its success in the shorter-distance races, the girls track team had multiple podium appearances at the longer distances.
Sophomore Lillian Gray kicked off the morning with a second-place varsity finish in the two-mile run, finishing with a time of
12:34. After Gray’s performance, two juniors finished in the top three as well.Junior Esme Barraz ran a 1:04.29 in the varsity
400-meter race, putting her in third place. Later in the evening, junior Josie Blackwell finished second in the 800-meter varsity race with a time of 2:36.64. Blackwell then finished the night for the varsity girls with an impressive kick in the 1,600.
“I was feeling really good in the mile, and I knew that if I wanted to run the times I am capable of, I needed to push the last 400,” Blackwell said. “As I came around to the last 200, I realized that I had moved up to fourth and was not far from third, so I put in everything I had left and was able to finish third.”
Blackwell crossed the line in 5:36.97 just milliseconds away from the school record.
“I think my performance went really well and has helped me build my confidence for district.” she said. “My goal is to qualify for area and place in the top three for my races.”
The boys and girls track team will compete next at their UIL District Meet this Tuesday and Wednesday at Burger Stadium.
Photo by Lillian Gray. Caption by Lillian Gray and Nate Williams.

Week of March 26, 2023 – April 1, 2023

Principal Nicole Griffith, journalism teacher Dave Winter and science teacher Elaine Bohls-Graham pose with pride flags on the first day of AISD PRIDE Week. At his previous school in Midtown, Atlanta, Winter witnessed a similarly accepting and robust observance of PRIDE week. However, he feels that McCallum’s history and culture, particularly with Spectrum, make Mac’s PRIDE celebrations unique. 
“For as long as I have been at Mac and before that, [Spectrum] has been vital in providing a safe space for LGBTQ students to be themselves,” Winter said. “The group has had a lot of turnover with faculty sponsorship in recent years, but its essential role has stayed constant through all of that. I think that the main thing is that Spectrum and PRIDE Week helps to give students a voice on campus.” 
PRIDE Week closely followed Black History Month, where students and faculty organized similar events, like student panels. In both instances, Winter saw how crucial and courageous it is for students to lead the conversations on issues like identity. 
“I was impressed [by] the fearlessness and leadership of the panelists and the willingness of students and teachers to listen and work to understand better the experience of others,” Winter said. 
Caption by Francie Wilhelm. Photo by Lillian Gray.

Week of March 19, 2023 – March 25, 2023

Black Girl Magic contest winner senior Sahara Cumberbatch stands in front of the “Black Girl Magic” billboard in the central hallway. She received her award from Tonya Moore
on March 6 for the submission of her piece, “Women of Light and Color.”
The contest was organized as part of the Black History Month event series at McCallum with the intention of highlighting Black female artists. Cumberbatch, won a coffee mug along with a $25 gift card. Cumberbatch’s winning submission was an art piece depicting a young Black woman empowered by her individuality.
“I entered this piece because the inspiration was my identity as a Black girl, and because of that, the parts of me that make me stand out physically for most of my classmates,” she said.
Cumberbatch hopes her piece will inspire confidence in embracing differences and emphasize the message that you don’t have to change the things that make you unique.
“This year as a senior art major all my artworks have to connect in some way,” she said. “I’ve been exploring the struggles I faced with myself at times that up until now I usually try to ignore
Cumberbatch viewed the contest as an opportunity to embrace her identity and show appreciation for Black History Month.
She is especially thankful to contest organizer Tonya Moore, Students of Color Alliance sponsor, for encouraging her to submit her artwork to the contest.
“Ms. Moore said that I should enter one of my art pieces.
Because I’m a major, she thought It would be good to have one of my works,” she said. “I appreciate the chance for Black people and Black culture to be celebrated. Seeing the different submissions makes me smile whenever I walk in the hallways.”
Reporting by Amaya Collier. Photo by Gergó Major.

Week of March 12, 2023 – March 18, 2023

Lupe Ruedas went the distance Friday night, striking out seven over seven innings to earn the win as the Knights edged Temple 5-4 in a Leander ISD Tournament game played at Vandegrift High School.
With the bases loaded at the score knotted at 4, Lyrr Friesem delivered the walk-off hit to drive home his brother Theo who had started the last at-bat rally with a one-out single that was followed by back-to-back walks to set up the game winner.
Ruedas needed only 98 pitches to make it through all seven innings because he allowed only five hits and walked three.
The win was the Knights’ lone victory in the tournament against four defeats, but the tournament no doubt has helped the Knights (6-7-1) prepare for the District 24-5A season, which begins tonight with Game 1 of the Knights’ district-opening two-game series against Crockett.
Photo by Stella Shepard.

Week of March 5, 2023 – March 11, 2023

Black Girl Magic contest winner senior Sahara Cumberbatch stands in front of the “Black Girl Magic” billboard in the central hallway. She received her award from Tonya Moore
on March 6 for the submission of her piece, “Women of Light and Color.”
The contest was organized as part of the Black History Month event series at McCallum with the intention of highlighting Black female artists. Cumberbatch, won a coffee mug along with a $25 gift card. Cumberbatch’s winning submission was an art piece depicting a young Black woman empowered by her individuality.
“I entered this piece because the inspiration was my identity as a Black girl, and because of that, the parts of me that make me stand out physically for most of my classmates,” she said.
Cumberbatch hopes her piece will inspire confidence in embracing differences and emphasize the message that you don’t have to change the things that make you unique.
“This year as a senior art major all my artworks have to connect in some way,” she said. “I’ve been exploring the struggles I faced with myself at times that up until now I usually try to ignore
Cumberbatch viewed the contest as an opportunity to embrace her identity and show appreciation for Black History Month.
She is especially thankful to contest organizer Tonya Moore, Students of Color Alliance sponsor, for encouraging her to submit her artwork to the contest.
“Ms. Moore said that I should enter one of my art pieces.
Because I’m a major, she thought It would be good to have one of my works,” she said. “I appreciate the chance for Black people and Black culture to be celebrated. Seeing the different submissions makes me smile whenever I walk in the hallways.”
Reporting by Amaya Collier. Photo by Gergó Major.

Week of Feb. 26, 2023 – March 4, 2023

In its third match against LASA this season, the varsity girls’ soccer team lost Saturday morning at House Park.
Twenty minutes in to the first half, the Raptors scored what would turn out to be the game’s only goal.
The Knights kept the pressure up throughout the first half, however, with multiple shots on goal from junior Sarah Hauck.
“I was a lot more aggressive this game, and was putting a lot more out on the line,” Hauck said.
Despite the loss, Hauck says she’s not disappointed in her team’s effort.
“The past games I feel like our intensity wasn’t there” Hauck said. “Even though we lost, our intensity was there, and we never gave up.”
Hauck also attributes the intensity in this game to the team’s district loss against Ann Richards on Feb. 7 at Ann Richards.
“We are not the team we were last year,” Hauck said. “Our game against Ann Richards has pushed us to be more aggressive. We all have to learn to put in 100%.
Hauck said the team did exactly that on Saturday even though they didn’t get results from their improved effort.
“We had more shots than our last game against LASA,” Hauck said, “but if we just followed up and finished off our chances to score we could’ve brought the score to 2-1.”
The Knights defeated the Raptors 3-2 at the 2023 Longhorn Challenge High School Soccer Preseason Showcase at UT’s
Berry M. Whitaker Sports Complex on Jan. 5, and the two teams played to a scoreless draw in their first district matchup on Jan. 23 at Nelson Field. Unlikely to meet again in 2023, the season series between the Knights and Raptors almost certainly ends with each team earning a win, a loss and a draw.
Caption by Naomi Di-Capua. Photo by Dave Winter.


GOOD START, UNFORTUNATE FINISH: Senior Liam Plum brings the ball under control during the boys varsity team’s 4-3 loss against Navarro on Friday March 3. The Knights started the game on a positive note, scoring just seconds into the game. Plum, who scored the goal, said the moment was a career highlight. “Scoring in the first 25 seconds of the game is one of my favorite memories of the team,” Plum said. “Although we lost, it was a competitive game and ending with a full senior squad was special.” Senior Eli Benitez said the opening goal put the Knights a step ahead; however, it also caused a confidence boost that may have caused them to let up later in the game. “We started the game great.” Benitez said. “It was nice to be up 1-0 in less than 30 seconds, but it made us believe that the rest of the game was going to be easy.”The Knights scored two more goals in the game, but the Vikings scored four times to earn a comeback win. “Our team needs to improve on playing at the same high intensity the whole match,” Benitez said. “Midfield slacked off a lot during the game, and it cost us; however, the forwards were able to connect a lot more passes, which is something we have been working on.” (Camilla Vandegrift)

Week of Feb. 19, 2023 – Feb. 25, 2023

For her second McCallum Fashion show, sophomore Sadie Swinney interpreted the Reflections and Shadows theme as a way to show the beauty of Light vs. Dark, two polar opposites. 
Swinney’s design for Sophomore Lucy Gennrich, pictured above, showcased the light side of her collection 
“Lucy’s look is supposed to be flowy and loose as well as white in order to convey that idea of the light side of light and dark.” Swinney said. 
For Swinney, the fashion show is not only an opportunity to get to create new designs, but also a chance to see her ideas come to life on the runway.
“The process can sometimes be long and hard, but I love seeing everything come together in the end..” Swinney said. “The models are everything and if you’re able to connect to the people you’re working with, it makes the process so fun.” 
Swinney plans to continue spreading her ideas and visions, and pursue more opportunities like the fashion show in the future
“I loved all my models this year and I’m so happy I got to work with them.” Swinney said. “I’ve been showing my work in various fashion shows since I was 8 years old, and I love watching my models walk the runway in my designs.”
Caption by Chloe Lewcock. Photo by Maggie Mass.


Week of Feb. 12 – Feb. 18, 2023

On the Valentine’s Day edition of Coffeehouse this year, seniors Josie Bradsby and Scarlett Stevens performed their original song for their set. The show took place in the library and featured two separate acts, one during school hours and one after. The show, designed for McCallum’s very own singers, songwriters and poets to showcase their work and talent, took place this afternoon. Sparkleboots, Bradsby’s and Steven’s duo, was one of the performances showcased today.
“We were kind of just playing around and thinking of different themes,” Stevens said. “I guess we were inspired by our real-life experiences and wrote from that.” 
While the Coffeehouse experience comes in lots of different shapes in sizes, with different songs, performers and genres conjoining to form this event, Stevens described that despite the anxiety that came with performing, it was worth it. 
“I learned that it’s very nerve-racking,” Stevens said, “but at the same time, it’s fun to play in front of people.”
Caption by Chloe Lewcock.  Photo by Julia Copas.

Week of Feb. 5, 2023 – Feb. 11, 2023

The girls JV basketball season came to an end Tuesday night after the Knights’ 30-23 win over the Ann Richards Stars. Sophomore Layla Al Hallaq was pleased with how the season played out.
“The season went by so fast and was super fun and a huge success,” Al Hallaq said. “I’m sad it’s come to an end.”
Like their varsity counterparts, the JV Knights enjoyed much success in district play, only losing one game and ending the season with a 9-1 record. Their only district loss was to Crockett. They were scheduled to have a rematch last week, but the game was canceled due to the ice storm.
“It’s super upsetting that we didn’t get to play the team we lost to a second time because I feel like we definitely could’ve beaten them this time around,” she said
Sophomore Savannah Doer noticed the team’s improvement throughout the season.
“We improved on working together as a team and getting clearer on our plays and our overall attitudes,” Doerr said. “We really formed a family and helped each other improve and lift each other up.”
Although the JV and freshman teams’ seasons are over, the varsity starts its playoff season next Tuesday in the Mac gym at 7 p.m. against Georgetown East View.
Caption and photo by Lillian Gray.

Week of Jan. 29, 2023 – Feb. 4, 2023

Senior Lauren Ryan-Holt (Leading Player) welcomes the audience in the show’s opening number, ‘Magic to Do.’  As a play within a play, Pippin has many layers to it, including the opening number which is performed as if the cast members were arriving at rehearsal and setting up for the top of the show
“It’s the cast’s musical bait to the audience,” Ryan-Holt said. “We’re luring them into the production we’re about to put on. We describe the journey and all the magical, fantastic things that will take place along the way. We literally set the stage for both the show and the audience’s expectations.”
Ryan-Holt opens the number and leads the other ensemble members until the song turns into a fully choreographed number. However, for Ryan-Holt, the opening seductive chords are her favorite part.
“There’s just something so mystical and enticing about how it sounds,” Ryan-Holt said. “It’s the one part where you can feel the full focus of the audience.”
Reporting by Alice Scott. Photo by Gergo Major.

Week of Jan. 22 – Jan. 28, 2023

Junior Esme Barraz reaches for the ball in last Tuesday’s game against LBJ, one of McCallum’s most formidable district competitors.
“They are second in the district, and last time we played them, we won in overtime,” Barraz said. “This being said, we really brought our energy and were able to execute enough to win.”
The Knights worked hard to support each other and executed successful plays to bring home the win and maintain the first place title.
Caption by Isley Cameron. Photo by Amira Habib Weymouth.

Week of Jan. 15 – Jan. 21, 2023

The varsity girls soccer team defeated Northeast, 5-1, to claim a victory in their district opener at House Park on Friday night.
Senior captain Chloe Anderson says the team began the game with the Raiders feeling they had something to prove.
“We lost so many seniors last year that made up the majority of our team,” Anderson said. “Coming into this year, we knew it was going to be a lot different than previous years.
While the four-goal margin was clearly a comfortable victory, Anderson said the team played better than the score indicates.
” don’t think [it] reflects how well we played as a unit,” Anderson said. “The combinations and communication has been the best we have had so far.”
While the overall play was encouraging, Anderson said the team has much to work on.
The Raider goal came on a penalty kick that was earned after a Raider player had beaten several of Knight defenders to draw a foul in the box.
In addition to avoiding defensive lapses like that in the future, Anderson said the Knights also need to play a bit freer on offense.
“We always try to be perfect, especially in front of a goal,” Anderson said. “We always want to take the perfect shot or set ourselves up perfectly rather than just shooting, which is how we end up missing opportunities to score”
The Knights hope to continue communicating well and to make the necessary adjustments when they face their two district opponents this week. The Knights play LBJ at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Nelson and Navarro at 7:30 p.m. Friday at House Park.
Reporting by Gaby Esquivel. Photos by Maggie Mass and Frank Webster.

Week of Jan. 8 – Jan. 14, 2023

Luis Auyero leaps in the air to celebrate his last-second goal with teammate and fellow Class of 2021 alum Ian Juul-Hansen. The goal broke a tie and allowed the 2021 squad to edge past the Class of 2019-2020 team. The six-man 2021 team, which included Auyero, Juul-Hansen, Aidan Golliher (right), Juul-Hansen, Reed Johnson, Blake Steckel and Moss Gillespie, won all but one game. Johnson, who now plays soccer at Hendrix College, attributed the 2021 team’s success to better defense and maturity.
“We did kinda kick butt,” Johnson said.
Johnson believes that Mac soccer alumni return year after year purely to see old teammates and play the ‘beautiful game.’ 
“Soccer is generally my motivation at a basic level,” Johnson said.
Caption by Ingrid Smith. Photo by Morgan Eye.


Week of Jan. 1 – Jan. 7, 2023

Freshman Ethan Plummer’s 12 third -quarter points and junior Roland Travis’ eight fourth -quarter points powered the varsity boys basketball team to a district win against the Crockett Cougars Tuesday night at Crockett.
After winning two of their four games at their past tournament, the Knights wanted to continue to play their best.
“We wanted to minimize the mistakes as much as we could and do what we needed to do to win,” junior Finn Coriggan said.
Even though his team led at halftime 21-16, Coach Fuentes noted a lack of energy and pleaded with his team to exert more effort in the second half.
“During halftime our coach talked a lot about energy and talked to us about the defense,” Corrigan said.
The Knights picked up the energy and pulled away from Crockett, ultimately winning 63-44.
In their next game against Hyde Park at DCG tomorrow, the Knights hope to play their best for all four quarters.
The opening tip for the varsity game is scheduled for 8 p.m.
Caption by Leah Gordon. Photos by Leah Gordon and Ben Zacharias.

Week of Dec. 25 – Dec. 31, 2022

The freshman boys basketball team beat the Travis Rebels 48-28 Wednesday night at the Don Caldwell Gymnasium.
Freshman Alex Hopper said that the Knights knew going into the game that they had to believe in themselves.
“Going into it we were confident, but we wanted to be able to hold that confidence the entire game,” Hopper said.
The Knights stuck to their script early building a 14-8 lead after one quarter.
The Knights doubled their score with 14 second quarter points while holding the Rebels to only three. The score at halftime was 28-11.
“We did a really great job of pressing and making good passes,” Hopper said.
The freshman put it on cruise control in the second half, winning by a comfortable final score of 48-28.
As the Knights head into the break, they will take some time off, but that won’t change their expectations.
“Even though we only have one practice during the break, I think we know what we need to do for the next game,” Hopper said.
The Knights will play the Crockett Cougars at Crockett on Jan.
Photos and caption by Leah Gordon.

Week of Dec. 18 – Dec. 24, 2022

The goal of the robotics team changes every year, with different courses that challenge the engineers. This year was a basketball-style course that forced the engineers to create a shooting mechanism for their robots. According to Sophomore Zane Wiggins, his team, the S team, was able to maneuver around the course and get up some good throws.
“The whole point of it is to shoot disks into the goals elevated above the course. You had to shoot them there using your robot,” Wiggins said. “Our ability to actually score goals was actually really good.”
With little experience so far this season, Wiggins feels that the team is in a good place, especially since this tournament will help them make more helpful adjustments to their robot.
“This is our second tournament of the season, and now we know many things of our robot that we can change,” Wiggins said.
Photo and caption by Lillian Gray.  (Lillian Gray)

Week of Dec. 11 – Dec. 17, 2022

LOOSE THREADS COME TOGETHER: Loose Knit, a band composed of McCallum students, performs their set at Friday’s Winter Fairytale Dance. Band member Nathan Howard said the local group jumped at the opportunity to broaden their audience, and even ended up playing more songs than they had expected to, which also proved to be a bit of a challenge to the band. “
Everyone adapted really well in the moment, which is something that as a musician you have to be able to do,” Howard said. “It was really nice to see everything come together in that one moment after we’d practiced so much.”
Caption by Camilla Vandegrift. Photo by Morgan Eye. (Morgan Eye)

Week of Dec. 4 – Dec. 10, 2022

FLYING SOLO: Junior Marshall Clifton performs “Fly Me to the Moon” during his second choir cabaret. Clifton was assigned the solo in October and has been working on it with the choir directors to get it ready for the concert.
“Mr. Nelson and Dr. Nelson made the song into real music,” Clifton said. “They told me the best way to sing it for my voice, told me what to wear, and all of the things that turn a song into a performance.”
For Clifton, the number was nerve-wracking, but also a great opportunity to expand his skills in singing and performance.
“At the end of the day, I was able to make the song my own,” Clifton said. “Having a live pianist gave me so much freedom to do what I wanted or needed to do in order to give my best performance, and that freedom was really invigorating.”
Reporting by Alice Scott. Photo by Francesca Dietz


Week of Nov. 27 – Dec. 3, 2022

The JV boys basketball team finished with a neck and neck loss against the Lockhart Lions this past
According to Junior Josh Cortez, the Knights went in with high morale.
“We were confident in our abilities going in, but quickly saw different,” sophomore Josh Cortez said.
The low-scoring first quarter saw the Knights down by one point, 11-10
The margin grew in the second quarter, and the Knights were down 22-13 by halftime.
“We had a lot of turnovers and bad passes that we need to work on overall,” Correz said.
In the last quarter, however, the Knights came close to a comeback and found themselves neck-and-neck with the Lions, but ultimately lost 27-26 when the final buzzer went off.
“In the future we really need to work on our defense and make better passes.” Cortez said.
Photos and caption by Leah Gordon.

Week of Nov. 20 – Nov. 26, 2022

BOB TO HIT THE BIG SCREEN: Director Carrie Stet and her production team visited the McCallum campus on Thursday to film a commercial for The Hershey Company, featuring officer Bob Bedard. The commercial is one of a series of films, all centering around genuine stories about positivity that are just as sweet as a Hershey’s chocolate bar.
Last year, current Shield editors Sophie Leung-Lieu and Naomi Di-Capua published a story centered around Bedard, discussing his impact on the McCallum community and his small acts of kindness: passing out a signature Hershey’s chocolate kiss to students during passing periods.
Not long after the publication of the article to The Shield Online, Hershey contacted Bedard.
Hershey Company head of earned media and storytelling Anna Lingers was one of the Hershey employees that first laid eyes on the article. Lingers works with journalists and the press, also bringing real happenings to life in advertisements.
“Part of what we’re doing is canvassing America to find stories about real people that use are Hershey’s bar as a connection,” Lingeris said. “We saw Bob’s story and we immediately knew we had to come to Texas, to McCallum to meet him and the students.”
Lingers and Stett have traveled to Missouri, Indiana and other states filming commercials about similar acts of kindness.
“Any time there is something positive going on, I like to tell the story,” Stett said. “I take the idea, see what the film is, and think about how I can turn that into an interesting video.”
On the filming day, Bedard brought smiles to many Knights, as many classes were paused to play extras in the commercial.
Alongside Leung-Lieu and Di-Capua, Bedard also selected students that he has created special relationships with to be interviewed for the film.
As director Stett called it a wrap, Hersheys ended the filming day with celebration of Bedard’s success.
“Bob’s a star,” Lingers said
Many students involved with the film had to undergo the process of a permission form, cooperating with the producers and representing the school with respect. “It’s been a wonderful experience here at McCallum,” Lingers said. “The students, the faculty, everyone on campus has been willing to help. I can really see the warmth from everybody.”
Having finished shooting at McCallum, the Hershey Company now will take on the next step of editing the commercial. We will know more about the final commercial timeline sometime in 2023.
Reporting by Sophie Leung-Lieu. Photos by Tuana Allen, Sophie Leung-Lieu, Caroline Owen and Dave Winter.

Week of Nov. 13 – Nov. 19, 2022

The varsity boys’ basketball team went into overtime but eventually lost to the Hays Hawks this past Tuesday. Transitioning from their last 50- 34 win against the Elgin Wildcats, the Knights wanted to start off the game with energy. “We wanted to start off fast and with energy to get ahead first,” junior Ondrej Michael said. The first quarter score ended with 17-11, with the Knights losing. This only made the players more motivated for the rest of the game. Going into the second quarter, the Knights started off by scoring 3 points from free throws in the first 2 minutes. Keeping that motivation, the team ended up putting 11 total points more on the board, 6 of which were made by junior Ondrej Michael. This put the score neck and neck at 22-23, with the Hawks ahead. Finally, in the last quarter, the Knights were able to keep the score neck and neck, eventually ending in a tie of 45-45, which would lead to overtime. Going into overtime the Knights wanted to continue their positive streak “We definitely wanted to keep up the high intensity,” Michael said. Sadly, the Knights were unable to uphold that hope and ended in a loss of 60-52. The Knights will play the Manor Mustangs at Manor High School tonight at 7pm.

Photos by Leah Gordon and Julia Copas. Caption by Leah Gordon.

Week of Nov. 6 – Nov. 12, 2022

SWEET REVENGE: The JV Knights earned a signature victory for their season against the Anderson Trojans on Sept. 27. The JV Knights swept their arch-rivals in two sets of 25-23, after a previous loss to them earlier in the season.
For JV coach Sydney Schriever tonight’s match was the most together the girls have played.
“We knew Anderson was going to be together and on it, but today was the most cohesive we have been all season,” Schriever said.
Having already played the Trojans, the JV team walked onto the court knowing what to expect.
“We really worked on letting everything roll off the back,” Schriever said, “If we made a mistake we kept going.”
JV player Bella Gonzales said that the big win was just one of the many wins the team enjoyed over a successful season. 
“I think everyone on the team was able to grow in their own skills,” Gonzales said. “Overall, it was so fun getting to play another year with all my friends, and I’m extremely proud of our hard work.”
Reporting by Naomi Di-Capua. Photo by JoJo Barnard.

Week of Oct. 30 – Nov. 5, 2022

A SWEET SURPRISE: Senior art society officers Amaya Collier and Claire De Silva-Yost smear cake on their advisor, Sara Massey. The students thought it’d be funny to cover Massey, who was dressed as the Mona Lisa, with cake, because the famous work was recently vandalized with the dessert.

“I liked seeing all our efforts being enjoyed by everyone in school,” De Silva-Yost said. “I saw so many smiles.”

De Silva-Yost found the stunt to be extra exciting considering that the acts of vandalism are still currently happening, with the most recent occurrence being last Thursday, targeting the painting “Girl With a Pearl Earring” by Johannes Vermeer. Although it isn’t certain that the defacing of the Mona Lisa corresponds with the more recent outbreaks, De Silva-Yost wouldn’t be surprised if the two were linked.

“I support the protests’ message to stop using oil,” De Silva-Yost said, “but I think they executed it in a way that lacks a clear message to the public.”

Caption and photo by JoJo Barnard.

Week of Oct. 23 – Oct. 29, 2022

The McCallum Youth Dance Company performed its final show of “Building in Progress/Life Happening,” on Saturday night at the Austin ISD Performing Arts Center. The concert featured a range of dance styles drawn from a variety of cultures and time periods. Sophomores Zalie Mann, Zoe Maxwell and Analise Bady performed a trio consisting of a fusion of West African, American Modern and Afro Caribbean dance. “It’s super high energy and such a fun dance to perform,” Mann said. In May, as part of a dance class assignment, dance majors analyzed and choreographed dance pieces, inspired by specific styles in dance history. Sophomore Kiki Baker, Maxwell and Bady originally choreographed and performed the piece as freshmen “It was our second semester project for dance last year and the pieces that were chosen for the performance were the highest scoring in our adjudication,” Mann said. In addition to Mann, Maxwell and Bady’s trio, selective dance majors performed their pieces from May. Other featured pieces included choreography from professional choreographers and students. Reporting by Sophie Leung-Lieu. Photos by Paxton King-Hovis and Sophie Leung-Lieu.

Week of Oct. 16 – Oct. 22, 2022

Maintaining their defense, the Knights led the Vikings into an uneventful third quarter with defense stopping the Vikings continuously. Halfway through the quarter, David Houston scored a rushing touchdown to bring the score to 28-10. Caption by Naomi Di-Capua. Photos by Charlie Partheymuller and Naomi Di-Capua.

Week of Oct. 9 – Oct. 15, 2002

Saxophonists Eadan Reeves, Jasper Kurtz and Eliot __ performing the marching band’s 2022 season piece “Seeing Stars” before the homecoming football game against Northeast. Reeves enjoyed performing at the game, as well as spirit week as a whole. “[My favorite part] was white out day, seeing a lot of people at McCallum in white and showing school spirit,” he said.

Caption by Francie Wilhelm. Photo by Naomi Di-Capua.

Week of Oct. 2 – Oct. 8, 2022

BUCKETS OF FUN: During lunch on Tuesday and Thursday, students in the PALS program volunteered to be drenched in water to raise money for the local charity Breast Cancer Resource Center (BCRC). Students had the opportunity to purchase a bucket of water for $10 and dump it on a PAL of their choosing. “The water buckets were definitely one of the reasons we were able to raise so much and beat our record,” senior Josie Bradsby said. “Pink week came a little early this year and I was pleasantly surprised that we were able to do so many activities successfully. It’s a great way to give back to my community and spread awareness and a sense of togetherness around McCallum.”
Caption by Jojo Barnard (JoJo Barnard)

Week of Sept. 25 – Oct. 1, 2022


KEEP YOUR GUARD UP: Color guard captain Ximena De La Garza flies double-swing flags during the finals performance at the Cap City Marching Competition.

The final performance came just after the guard was awarded best in its category in prelims for the first time in 40 years. According to De La Garza, the band performed “an amazing show.”

“After you get on the field there’s just a sense of ‘I know what I’m doing, and I’m just going to have fun with it,’” De La Garza said. “It felt exhilarating walking on the field and seeing how spirited everyone was.”

Caption by JoJo Barnard. Photo by Morgan Eye.

Week of Sept. 18 – Sept. 24, 2022

WHAT A BREEZE: Under dark skies and cooler breeze, the @macbandofficial competes in finals in the Cap City Marching Competition. With the onset of cooler weather and darker skies, band and color guard members said they were much more confident in their run. “The finals round felt so much better in comparison to prelims, senior color guard captain Ella Jones said “The fact that it was dark and I didn’t have to stare into the sun when I was doing my tosses and my feet weren’t falling off just made it so much better. We were all high energy and much more excited for the run.” Jones predicts a favorable result from the judges. “The judges really liked our show to begin with, and they specifically told the color guard that we were one of the best parts of the performance in prelims,” Jones said. “Our performance was a way sassier, poppy type of deal, so I think they will react really well to what we put on the field” The drum majors will take to the field to receive the results of their run at 10:30 p.m. tonight.
Photos and caption by Morgan Eye.

Week of Sept. 11 – Sept. 17, 2022

EVIL IN THE AIR: Senior Charlotte Blackmon (Maleficent), has stolen Fairy Godmother’s magic wand in hopes of taking over Auradon to further her own evil agenda. “She’s celebrating that victory and using this new added power to terrify everyone at the coronation,” Blackmon said. “I haven’t played the villain in a long time, and I love the campiness of Maleficent. Everything about her is iconic, so it’s definitely some big shoes to fill, but I have such a good time with her.” Blackmon believes the show wouldn’t have been possible without the support of student technicians who helped to create sets, costumes and props. “I really admire the technicians for this show,” Blackmon said. “Descendants is a very tech heavy production and they’ve really pulled through to make everything look and sound amazing.” Reporting by Alice Scott. Photo by Sophie Kessler.

Week of Sept. 4 – Sept. 10, 2022

COMEBACK COMPLETE – Picking up right where they left off within the third quarter, Mitchell Butler ran in his second touchdown of the night for an eight-point lead. That lead would stick for half the quarter until the Cougars scored on their own rushing touchdown and completed the tie with a two-point conversion. All was not over for the Knights though, as after both teams turned the ball over on downs. Two clutch pass completions and a few more runs by Butler got the Knights into range for a 43-yard game-winning field goal kick by Dash Levy. With this victory, the Knights now move to 1-2 entering district play next week against Crockett at House Park on 9/15. Caption by Charlie Partheymuller. Photo by Dave Winter.

Week of Aug. 28 – Sept. 3, 2022

The varsity volleyball team swept the Northeast Raiders on Tuesday in its first district match of the season. The Knights cruised in the first set, 25-11. Freshman Lexi Rosenblatt said Tuesday’s game allowed the team to work on specific issues within a game setting. “It was a good chance to run plays,” Rosenblatt said. “We needed to work on communicating more and talking on the court.” The varsity put together its most dominant set in the second, winning by 16 points, 25-9. The Knights lost their early momentum in the final set, still winning, but the Raiders competed much more evenly before the Knights ultimately prevailed, 25-18, to complete the sweep. “We just fell out of it during that last set,” Rosenblatt said. “We got lazy because we knew we would win even if we didn’t try that hard. We stopped communicating.” The varsity plays LBJ this Friday at LBJ at 7:30 p.m. It’s the first varsity game between the two traditional rivals since BJ rejoined the UIL district for 5A @austinisd schools this school year. Caption by Naomi Di-Capua. Photos by Jolie Gabriel


Week of Aug. 21 – Aug. 27, 2022

MILES AND MILES: Senior Miles McCollum leads the Knights onto the same field where he suffered a season-ending injury a year ago. Although he and his teammates were unable to turn the final score the Knights’ way, McCollum made an impact in the game, often drawing Anderson multiple blockers when he lined up on defense. The Knights may have lost, but at least McCollum made it through the game with his health intact. That’s one improvement from a year ago. Caption by Dave Winter. Photo by Charlie Partheymuller

Week of Aug. 14 – Aug. 20, 2022

REUNITED AND IT FEELS SO GOOD: Juniors Alice Scott, Sophie Leung-Lieu and Naomi Di-Capua greet each other in the hallway before first period on the first day of school. Scott, Leung-Lieu and Di-Capua all started out their junior year as returning members of the Shield staff. For design and visuals editor Leung-Lieu, the new year brought about new opportunities to help improve the paper, despite the difficulties of only being present for one of two newspaper periods. “Design is such an overarching part of newspaper but I am hoping I will be able to help virtually,” Leung-Lieu said. “I love design because it can make or break your story and you can do so many different things with it.” Leung-Lieu hopes to find inspiration in new perspectives. “I am looking forward to hearing new staffers’ ideas and bringing new creativity to the Shield,” Leung-Lieu said. Reporting by Lanie Sepehri. Photo by Dave Winter.

Week of Jan. 9 – Jan. 15, 2022

HOME COURT VICTORY (Jan. 11): The boys varsity basketball team won against the Travis Rebels last night at home court. The boys started out strong in the first quarter on both sides of the court, scoring 18 points on the offensive and allowing zero shots in from Travis on the defensive. The rest of the game went much like the first quarter, and Mac won the game with a final score of 66-21. As part of their impressive offense, two players, junior guard David Houston and senior forward Nate Davidson, dunked during the game. “That was the first time I’ve ever dunked in an actual game,” Davidson said. “It was great and energizing feeling, and it was a great win. We played as a team well and we’re excited to go into our next game.” Photos by Kennedy Weatherby.

Week of Jan. 2 – Jan. 8, 2022

FLOURISHING FLAMENCO (Jan. 7): For freshman Analise Bady, the Toma Que Toma dance was an opportunity to explore a new type of dance: Flamenco. “The dance is Flamenco,” Bady said. “It was most of ours first time doing this dance, I’d heard about it before and always wanted to try it.” Despite the dance’s beauty and the dancers’ excitement, it requires meticulous coordination in order to ensure all the claps and stomps included happen simultaneously. “We had to learn the basic moves first and separately because it’s very particular,” Bady said. “We were taught the moves and later added in the choreography. With a lot of dance styles they reflect on you,” Bady said. “This style is something I really want to do again.” Caption by Naomi Di-Capua. (Dave Winter)

Week of Dec. 12 – Dec. 18, 2021

Following students’ first round of finals on Tuesday, Dec. 14, the JV-A and varsity boys soccer teams met on their practice field for their annual scrimmage against each other. The scrimmage is the precursor to the teams real scrimmage next Monday against Eastside Memorial. For varsity coach Nick Martin and JV-A coach Brad Bernard, the scrimmage is the best way to see how they want to design their teams as the season approaches. “The point of preseason is to find out what works and what doesn’t,” Martin said. “It helps us understand who belongs where and what changes need to be made.” Coach Bernard agrees. “Scrimmaging just helps us find out where people fit, and how much they can play for us.” Tuesday’s friendly competition against the two teams ended in a 4-0 win for the varsity, which left Martin pleased and Bernard less so. “We got a lot of work to do” Bernard said before adding “the only reason Martin’s team is so good is because I trained them all on JV last year.” Photos and reporting by Naomi Di-Capua.
THEY FELT THE KNEAD, THE KNEAD FOR FEED (Dec. 14): What do you do when two thirds of your Latin class exempts your final, and you don’t want them loafing around all finals period? Why, you convert your final into Bread Day of course. Nick Martin’s Latin class celebrated the end of their experience reading Pliny the Elder’s writing on bread and leavening (in Latin of course) by making and breaking bread together. “We felt it was a great way to cap off the reading,” Martin said of his class of linguists turned classical bakers. This reporter began his investigation into Bread Day with junior Rowan Sammon’s spot-on attempt to recreate a Pompeian loaf that was found in ruins of that Roman city. Sammon said it was a tough task. “Pretty much all we know is what it looks like,” said Sammon, who opted for a half spelt/half whole wheat mixture. The appearance of the loaf was picture perfect. Classmate Grace Hickey cut the chit chat about bread making short because she caught a glimpse of senior Sorcha Wilson’s salty rosemary focaccia. “We have to start moving through this more swiftly,” she told the class. “I am dying to get to that focaccia.” Wilson’s bread delivered on its promise of delectability, a fact that she attributed to ignoring the recipe almost entirely. Instead, Wilson said, she fed the yeast sugar for about 10 minutes then kneaded in flour and olive oil for about an hour. After punching it down with a second round of kneading, she left it in the fridge for seven hours, about six hours and 15 minutes more than the recipe called for. Senior Max Yehaskal admitted that bringing a loaf to Bread Day is a daunting assignment. As if to prove that point, Miles Butler apologized to the class before serving the whole grain bread he made for fear he had slightly overcooked it. He was relieved when the verdict came in that the tasty loaf had exceeded expectations. The final dessert round of tasting included Camilla Vandegrift’s zucchini bread, which she admitted had nothing to do with ancient Rome, but did honor the more modern expectation that you bake zucchini bread around Christmastime. The final loaf to be shared was Hickey’s sweet, tasty cardamom bread. Photo by Dave Winter.

Week of Dec. 5 – Dec. 11, 2021

The girls varsity basketball team lost to Anderson on Dec. 10. The team played strong in the first quarter, but by the second, the Trojans had caught up to them. “The first quarter was defiantly our best quarter,” senior Chris Schumann said. “In the second quarter we really lost a lot of our energy and let them get a big lead on us.” Sophomore Esme Barraz attributes this to feeling “frazzled” by Anderson. “We were frustrated and let Anderson get in our heads,” Barraz said. “We felt we could have done better. I think we can beat them next time.” Caption by Evie Barnard. Photos by Lucy Marco.

Week of Nov. 28 – Dec. 4, 2021

SOUND THE ALARM: Today during eighth period, there was a trashcan fire in the girls bathroom in the University Boulevard hallway. Teacher Michael McClaughlin heard about the fire from a student and ran to the bathroom to check the situation. “Sure enough there were some flames in the trash can,” he said, “so we doused it and then I ran and got the safety officer.” As the smoke circulated through the hallway, the fire alarm went off and students began to exit. The Austin Fire Department tweeted at 3:18 p.m. reports of the trash fire at 5600 Sunshine Drive. The evacuation from the school building went smoothly, and there were no injuries due to the fire. The Austin Fire Department quickly arrived on campus and assessed the damage before students and teachers were allowed back into the building approximately 25 minutes after the evacuation took place. Besides the lingering scent of smoke in the hallway, the damage was minimal and contained to the bathroom. Photo by Lanie Sepheri.
JAGS 81, KNIGHTS 47 (Nov. 30): Senior guard Noah Whiteley tries for a layup in the varsity boys basketball team’s Tuesday night game against the Johnson Jaguars. The Knights got off to a rocky start with Mac only scoring 12 points compared to Johnson’s 29 in the first quarter. Unfortunately for the Knights, they were unable to comeback from this initial setback and lost the game, 81-47. Photo by Kennedy Weatherby.

Week of Nov. 21 – Nov. 27, 2021

Week of Nov. 14 – Nov. 20, 2021

BATTLE OF THE BANDS: Drummer King Perez-Cude of the band Red River Trucking Company performs at the 2021 edition of Battle of the Bands on Nov. 16 in the Fine Arts Building Theatre. Six bands competed for two performance slots at the local, live music venue Hole in the Wall.
The event has typically been larger, but as guitar teacher Andrew Clark described, “We had two bands drop out, which is kind of funny. We’ve never had bands drop out before at the last minute.” The bands that did perform boasted diverse set lists ranging from originals to covers.
“I liked our punk song ‘Save you’ by the Riverboat Gamblers,” recalled junior Nathan Dart, a member of Sweet Encounters. “It just has a good energy to it. It’s very upbeat—or not upbeat—but it’s fun and loud.” Sweet Encounters was one of the winning bands, alongside Daydreamer. These winners were decided by an audience vote. “I was really happy,” said Charlie McBride, Daydreamer’s guitarist. “This was probably the biggest thing we have done as a band so far. There were some complications, but we got it worked out in our first big performance.” You can see the winning bands perform at Hole in the Wall in the spring alongside the McCallum guitar ensemble. Photo by Meredith Grotevant.
A crowd of over 250 students marches around the campus’s perimeter during the Nov. 15 walkout against sexual assault. According to assistant principal Andy Baxa, students who walked out had to remain outside the building so as to not disrupt education for students who chose to remain in class. “We’re never going to tell students they cannot protest,” Baxa said. “But… if you interfere with other people’s right to an education, that’s kind of where we can draw the line.” Baxa explains that the administration wanted to accommodate the choices made by different students. “Our main focus … was just to make sure we preserve the sanctity of the educational environment and still allow people to have a place to do what they felt like they needed to do,” Baxa said. Caption by Lanie Sepehri. (Nate Williams)

Week of Nov. 7 – Nov. 13, 2021

THEY ARE THE CHAMPIONS (Nov. 12): With this bi-district win (and group photo with trophy) the Knights move on to play Alamo Heights for the area title. “Win next week, that’s our goal,” Rosales said. (Charlie Partheymuller).

Week of Oct. 31 – Nov. 6, 2021

STATE OF MIND (Nov. 1): Seniors Natalie Nagy, John Hamlet, Scarlet Frese, sophomore Stella Hufford, junior Stephanie Gallegos, freshman Sadie Swinney and junior Claire De Silva-Yost smile post-show for a group photo at the Alamodome in San Antonio. Photo by Sophie Kessler.
SEVEN MORE MINUTES (Nov. 1): After placing sixth in the prelims, the marching band has advanced to the 5A UIL State finals for the first time in 41 years. The anticipation of the results for the UIL Area prelims competition was tense and prolonged, as the Mac Band was called at the very last second. This time, however, the band did not have to wait for the good news. After the UIL State preliminary round, the band was the very first name listed of the 12 schools that made tomorrow’s finals performance list. As the band was leaving the stadium, a celebratory chant from the MAC band rang through the main hall. “Seven more minutes! Seven more minutes!” The band claimed their “seven minutes” the next day in the final round of UIL State at 2:15 p.m. in the afternoon. Photo by Morgan Eye.

Week of Oct. 24 – Oct. 30, 2021

JIVIN WITH JV: sophomore setter Ella Rankin celebrates during the JV volleyball team’s straight-set home victory over LASA on Tuesday, Oct. 26. The Lady Knights claimed the district title after dispatching the Raptors, 25-15, 25-16. “Our team had a really good season,” Rankin’s teammate, junior Catalina Flores, said. “I’m glad we finished off strong with our win against LASA. We finished first in district, and I think that’s what our team was really looking forward to when playing them. It kept us motivated to fight for that win. I think the whole game was really special for us; we have all bonded so much this year and grown so much.” Although the JV team’s season has come to a close, the varsity Knights, the No. 2 seed in District 17-5A face Weiss, the No. 3 seed in District 18-5A in the opening round of the 5A state playoffs at 6:30 p.m. next Tuesday at Weiss. Photo by Sophie Beardslee.

Week of Oct. 24 – Oct. 30, 2021

Week of Oct. 17 – Oct. 23, 2021

ROYAL KNIGHTS (Oct. 21): Juniors Dylan Neal and Mason Michulka walk across the House Park field during halftime after being crowned Class of 2023 homecoming royalty. (Charlie Partheymuller)

Week of Oct. 10 – Oct. 16, 2021

Week of Oct. 3 – Oct. 9, 2021

Week of Sept. 26 – Oct. 2, 2021

Week of Sept. 19 – Sept. 25, 2021

LEVEL UP: Competing this afternoon in the preliminary round of the Capital City Marching Festival, the marching band and color guard won four awards for the performance of show entitled “Mirage.” The band won overall first place for general effect and first place general music performance. The also won first place in the 4A band category and earned the best score out of all schools in the competition with a score of 935/1000. The percussion section also was named the best percussion section among 4A bands at the competition. By virtue of their score, the band will also advance to the finals tonight to compete against the other bands that made the finals. “Winning the four awards solidifies us as good enemies in a sense,” saxophone soloist Will Sharp said. “Not only did we win everything marching wise, but also music wise. It just means so much to me to have made it this far since I have been doing this for so long.” Photo by Morgan Eye.

Clicks and taps resonated throughout the cafeteria on Monday afternoon as freshman America Franken put on her Ballet Folklorico shoes. Unlike many other dance forms, Ballet Folklorico contains a verbal element alongside the visual: the purposeful tapping of the shoes. According to Franken, the verbal element of Ballet Folklorico that comes from the shoes is integral to the art form. “The shoes are similar to tap shoes,” Franken explained. “The noise [the shoes make] is the beat.” Franaken is no stranger to the art form. Franken comes from a family with a long history of dancing Ballet Folklorico, so joining the club was almost a right of passage for her. “I’m Mexican, so we’re big time,” Franken said. “My mom did it in high school, so it was time for her daughter to do it too.” Ballet Folklorico practices after school on Mondays from 4:35 to 6 p.m. If any students would like to join the troupe, they can visit Room 164. Costumes are provided. “They just need to bring their energy, positive attitudes and beautiful smiles,” said Juana Gun, Ballet Folklorico sponsor. Photo by Alysa Spiro.

Week of Sept. 12 – Sept. 18, 2021

KNIGHT MOVES: The McCallum Chess Club is in session. The club met after school Tuesday in Room 118, where Liam Glancy demonstrated the Queen’s Gambit to the other club members. Glancy started the club due to an intense passion for chess. Members face off in dramatic duels and learn to study and apply basic chess tactics and strategy. lf you’re interested in joining, go to Mr. Mills’ Room 118 on Tuesday afternoons from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Photo by Faith Bertheaud. Caption by Alex Kim.

Week of Sept. 5 – Sept. 11, 2021

KNIGHTS 3, REBELS 0 — The varsity cruised past Travis on Friday night with a straight-set road victory, 25-7, 25-10, 25-9. Because the team won 75 of the 101 points played, the quick match kept the individual stats fairly modest. Senior libero Katie Peterson led the Knights with four aces and seven digs while senior outside hitter Grace Werkenthin and junior outside hitter Kate Shackelford tied for the team lead in kills with three apiece. Junior setter Teasia Cooks doled out a team-high 13 assists; junior setter Saraih Taylor chipped in five. Junior middle hitter Vaughn Vandegrift had the team’s lone solo block. Photo by Meredith Grotevant.

AT A LOSS FOR WORDS: Senior utility player Brock Fanning protests a call that negated a big gain during the 24-17 loss to the Connally Cougars at House Park on Sept. 10. “Our defense would make a great stop, and the offense would not capitalize.,” Fanning said. “Defensively we knew they would make some plays, and we just had to be sound but we gave up many big plays.” Photo by Evie Barnard.

PLAYING THE VILLAIN: With the power of rap and hip hop on his side, senior Tristen Gilley as Plankton announces his master plan to hypnotize the Bikini Bottom residents into loving his chum burgers. In this number, Plankton enjoys a brief moment of power before his inevitable doom. “Plankton really believes he finally formed a scheme that’ll work,” Gilley explained. Being the antagonist can be difficult, but Gilley enjoys the artistic challenge.“Playing antagonists/villains/evil geniuses is the best,” Gilley said. “I’ve been given so much room and freedom to make the character my own, which is pretty awesome.” Reporting by Alysa Spiro. Photo by Meredith Grotevant.

Week of Aug. 29 – Sept. 4, 2021

The Blue Brigade performed a pom routine set to “Old Town Road” at halftime of the varsity football game against Lehman on Friday Sept. 3 at Bob Shelton Stadium in Buda. Photo by Morgan Eye.

Week of Aug. 22 – Aug. 28, 2021

SECOND HALF RALLY. The Knights pulled off their first win in the Taco Shack bowl in three years with a 14-13 victory over the Anderson Trojans. The defense made some significant stops in the first quarter with senior Brock Fanning, coming up with a big interception near the goal line to keep the game scoreless. Anderson took the lead in the second quarter and carried that 7-0 lead into the half. In the second half the Knights offense looked dangerous featuring a three headed rushing attack of seniors, Jaxon Rosales, Colby Napier and Thomas Lonsdale. Rosales ran one in to tie the score midway through the third quarter. Anderson would go on to score on the final play of the third quarter but would miss a crucial extra point to lead 13-7 going into the final quarter. Tough defense and some more bruising runs by the Mac defined the fourth quarter. Rosales dumped off a short pass to Nate Davidson for the game winning score with 6:42 left on the clock, all the Knights needed was some good defense and some clock-killing running to seal the victory, and that’s exactly what they got. Caption by Charlie Partheymuller. Photo by Dave Winter.

Week of Aug. 15 – Aug. 21, 2021


CROWDSOURCING: Arwen Frederiksen (far left) walks down the hallway before school starts to re-familiarize themselves with the campus. “[The hallways] were definitely busier than I expected,” Frederiksen said. After almost a year and a half of virtual learning, Frederiksen expresses how they are simply happy to be around other people once again. “I haven’t seen a bunch of my just school friends in forever,” Frederiksen said. “It was great.” Reporting by Alysa Spiro. Photo by Dave Winter.

Week of Feb. 21 – Feb. 28, 2021

FINAL LEAP FOR VARGAS (Feb. 27): Performing his senior solo at the Central Texas Dance Festival on Feb. 27, Senior Blue Brigade Co-Captain Matthew Vargas danced to “A Moment Like This” by Kelly Clarkson. Vargas said he chose the song because he’d been waiting for his final senior performance. “After doing my solo at the competition, I felt so happy and I felt like I had never danced so good in my life” Vargas said. This performance was a lyrical solo, which was his favorite type of solo. Vargas’ final costume was custom made, so nobody would have one like it. Though this year wasn’t how Vargas pictured senior year, he took in the moment and danced to the best of his abilities. Photo by Dave Winter, reporting by Mia Gomez.

Week of Feb. 15 – Feb. 21, 2021

CONGRESS AVENUE SNOW BLANKET (Feb. 15): Junior Carly Johnson captured this awesome image of downtown Austin on Monday, and we are glad to have it to include in the 2021 yearbook. Help us preserve this historic week and your place in it by sending us a photo of this week as you experienced it, whether that be playing in the snow, overcoming days on end without power or something else entirely. To submit your photos to us, use the Google Form linked to our bio or just DM it to us if that’s easler. Thanks for helping us make a better yearbook for you and stay safe and warm in this crazy, crazy week in Texas history.

Week of Feb. 7 – Feb. 13, 2021

SETTING THE STAGE (Feb. 7): The community construction crew the raised a stage this past weekend included faculty members like math teacher Matt Whipple left and interim principal Nicole Griffith (standing at right). “It was a lot of fun and we got a lot done,” Whipple said. Photo by Nicole Wayman.

Week of Jan. 31 – Feb. 6, 2021

THE WORLD IS YOUR STAGE (Feb. 6): While the stage they will perform the show was being built around the corner, the cast of Urinetown rehearses in the fine arts courtyard just outside the gym entrance. “It’s been tricky to keep everyone on task and distanced during rehearsals,” said sophomore Kathryn Dooley, who plays Soupy Sue in the show, “but the show is really coming together and we are just so excited that we get to put on a show at all!”  Reporting by Josie Bradsby. Photo by Dave Winter.

Week of Dec. 20 – Dec. 26, 2020

MURMURED CONVERSATIONS (Dec 22): This picture is of a young couple quietly whispering to each other at the Blanton’s European art gallery early on a Saturday morning. Because of the reduced visitor in the museum, the typical quiet hum of conversation has dissipated. This turns every conversation or exchange of words instinctively into a whisper. Photo by Lissa Castro.

Week of Nov. 8 – Nov. 14, 2020

ALL SMILES (Nov. 13): The freshman team cheer on the varsity players with posters, balloons and smiles. It was senior night last Tuesday, the last home game for the seniors. The freshman and JV get big sisters or “bigs” each year. These are varsity volleyball players who act like a big sister, someone the girls can look up to and cheer on. The freshman made signs to celebrate the varsity girls. “It was senior night and all of us had senior bigs,” freshman Ella Rankin said. “We made them because we care about them and will miss them. I don’t think we have ever cheered louder cause I woke up the next day and could barely talk.” Photo by Jolie Gabriel.

Week of Nov. 1 – Nov. 7, 2020

LEAPS AND DOWNS (Nov. 5): Coach Chris Russell and junior safety Jake Hissey celebrate after Hissey’s tackle forced a turnover on downs in the second half of the Knights’ 14-0 victory over district opponent Marble Falls at House Park on Nov. 5. The Knight defense stifled the Mustang offense throughout the game and created three turnovers on downs in the second half alone. Photo by Caleb Melville.

Week of May 31 – June 6, 2020

WE ARE TIRED (May 31): On a day when hundreds of protesters gathered in downtown Austin during the second day of demonstrations against police brutality in the aftermath of the deaths of George Floyd and Mike Ramos, a solitary protester holds a sign with a simple message seemingly directed at the Texas Capitol and the government that convenes there. Photo by Bella Russo.

Week of April 6 – April 12, 2020

A PARADIGM SWITCH (April 9): During the first day of online classes, physics teacher Robert Ely shows the class his SNES-style Nintendo Switch remote, which he had found after “rediscovering” the NES style games on the Nintendo online platform. After the Nintendo discussion, the class Zoom was spent going over the plan for the class and discussing assignments, as well as exploring the COVID-19 situation and its impact on students’ lives and classes. “It was very much a check-in for both my students and for me. We are all in such a new situation. The need for connection was palatable,” Ely said. Caption by Zazie Bryant. Photo by Risa Darlington-Horta. (Risa Darlington-Horta)


A PAWS TO CELEBRATE BEFORE THE MEETING STARTS: At the Zoom faculty meeting on April 7, teachers discovered a little used feature on Zoom. If you have an adorable puppy on your screen, your image immediately goes to the center of the first screen and your feed is outlined in yellow so everyone knows to look at the puppy. It worked for Coach Grant too just before this image of Ms. Wiley was captured. Screenshot by Dave Winter.


ZOOM TIME! For a kindergartner, it’s very difficult to find ways to learn while practicing social distancing and having two working parents. The solution to this? Well, obviously a Zoom class. Here my little brother joined his first Zoom on a Tuesday morning (April 7). He waves to his fellow classmates through the screen after not seeing them for weeks. Photo by Anna Garcia.


PUG IN YOUR COMPUTERS: As Mac students entered a new era of online learning on Monday April 6, pulling out Chromebooks, phones and planners, English teacher James Hutcheson began the day with a paw-sitively precious showcase for his fourth-period English II class. Olive, one of Hutcheson’s two pugs, gave birth to a litter of five on the first Saturday of spring break, and the playful pooches have since been feeding, first opening their eyes and beginning to walk. “Olive is a very good mom, so it’s not too difficult to care for them,” Hutcheson said. Hutcheson said he will not be keeping the puppies. “Seven pugs in a 450-square foot apartment would be entirely too much,” he said. “They are, however, a welcome diversion in the meantime.” In addition to witnessing the cutie canines, Hutcheson’s classes have also been given a heartwarming opportunity.  His students have been encouraged to write original poetry and letters to submit to various assisted-living facilities in the Austin area, as his spouse works with the elderly in Round Rock. “Because of the issues surrounding COVID-19, [the patients] are unable to see their families,” he stated in the Blend announcement to his students. “As you can imagine this is an incredibly lonely and stressful time for these elders.” Hutcheson stated that the submissions thus far have been exactly what was needed. “We’ve had a lot of students write some very heartwarming words to brighten the day of some of our elderly,” he said. “It’s OK if you don’t know their name. I don’t know their names,” his announcement reads. “Your words will still respond.” To submit any writing to brighten these patients’ days, email your submissions to [email protected]. Photo by Anna Bausman. Reporting by Madelynn Niles. (Anna Bausman)
BACK TO BASICS: On the first day of online classes on April 6, senior Daniela Bodoh works on pre-calculus notes on sequences and factorials. “It was my first time in a while holding a pencil, and I felt like I almost had to ‘teach’ myself how to write again because it’s been so long.” Bodoh said she missed school during the extended spring break, something she never thought she’d ever be able to say, and that she found some distinct advantages in the current approach. “School from home is nice because we get to learn at our own pace, and we don’t have to spend 7.5 hours sitting in classrooms,” she said. “While normally it takes an hour and a half to complete notes in math class, doing them at home on my own meant that I could not only take as much time as I needed to copy them down without having to worry about the teacher going too fast.” She also was free to move on to something else if she finished earlier than anticipated, which was the case with today’s notes. Photo courtesy of Daniela Bodoh. (Daniela Bodoh)


THREE-ROOM SCHOOLHOUSE (April 6): In a scene that was played out all over Mac Nation this morning, senior Henry, sophomore Annabel, teacher Dave and alpha dog Marty Winter posed for a first day of online school photo then reported to first period in their own residence. Do you have a first day of online school photo to share? Please send it to us for a possible post or appearance in the 2020 yearbook. Photo and video by Jennifer Winter.

Week of March 30 – April 5, 2020

KENYON BOUND (April 3): Talking with Catie Mendivil about Kenyon College, the storied liberal arts college in Gambier, Ohio, it’s hard not to soak up her enthusiasm. She committed yesterday, after visiting the campus in January. “I loved the community,” Mendivil said. “Everyone I met–the professors, students and staff–were all so kind and had so much passion for what they did.” It didn’t hurt, she added, that the campus was beautiful. She’s majoring in anthropology and sociology, but you get the idea she’s going to give it her all in every class she takes there. “I’m excited to take any and all classes.” We wish Mendivil the best next fall and in everything else that lies ahead in her future. And even though that future is considerably bright, Mendivil still is grounded in the present as well. “I just want to send a lot of love to the Class of 2020,” she told us tonight. “I’m so sad we won’t get to celebrate this exciting time in person, but I’m glad MacJ is finding ways to keep us connected and supported.” Photo courtesy of Mendivil. Note: This was the first post in the virtual #MacSeniorWall2020 on our @MacJournalism Instagram account. Over the course of the spring and summer we featured 80 Class of 2020 graduates on the wall.

WE SHALL OVERCOME (April 2): Images of community solidarity and virus resistance captured by 2019 Knight student life editor Ella Jane Larrimer.

MAKING A BUCKET NOW OFF THE BUCKET LIST (April 2): Junior Megan Shieh checked in with us yesterday to share that she crossed making a bucket off her extended spring break bucket list. Why a bucket, you ask? “I made a bucket to sit on over the extended spring break … because I missed sitting on buckets like we do in softball. The end to the season was hard. Especially since it ended with a close loss to LBJ.” Shieh decorated her bucket to show off her admiration for @justinbieber, her favorite musical artist. While she is missing softball and eager to return to the diamond, Shieh is not discouraged nor is she sitting around and sulking about her shortened season. “At least we can say we fought hard. My friend and I came up with a workout schedule to do together. We focused on strengthening our cores and running. That will help me stay in shape when we can get back in the weight room and on the field.” Photo courtesy of Shieh.


PAW-SITIVE ENERGY (April 1): Sophomore Zara Terrazas-Graham and her 4-year old golden doodle Rain. “Rain loves agility competitions and running through her tunnel,” Graham said. Photo courtesy of Graham.


HOME IMPROVEMENT (March 31): Junior Diego Orrick and senior Mia Orrick have been busy over their extended spring break. The siblings took to power tools because Diego had been wanting to plant a garden for about two years, and the break provided a perfect time to tackle the project. “I thought three planters would be perfect for our space,” said Diego, who then began to measure the space and sketch a design. The siblings then made a list of materials and began their three-day build. Then, Mia said, each family member had input about what would go into the planters. “We took a family poll to see what each one of us wanted to plant. Our moms pretty much left it up to us. We have tomatoes, zucchini, cucumber, and some herbs. My younger sister Desi wanted strawberries, so we got a few young strawberry plants as well.” The shelter in place has given the family an opportunity to enjoy their patio and take on some new responsibility for making it prettier and more functional. Photos by Evelyn Escamilla.

Week of March 23 – March 29, 2020

At the suggestion of his AP calculus teacher Angie Seckar-Martinez, senior Henry Winter takes a March 29 online College Board class entitled, “Calculus AB: 7.1 Modeling Situations with Differential Equations,” taught by Virge Cornelius, an AP Calculus teacher at Lafayette High School in Oxford, Miss. The course available on the Advance Placement YouTube channel. Students can view the class via livestream or watch them after they are recorded and archived on the YouTube channel. (Dave Winter)


BOUND BY LOCKS (March 28): Freshman Josie Bradsby and her younger sister Elyza opted for new hair colors during their extended break with Josie going to the dark side and Elysa opting to become a pink lady. Josie shared with us that Elyza wanted to dye her hair to change things up and went lighter because she used to be blonde. “We both dyed our hair because we wanted something to do while trapped inside,” Josie said. “We also wanted to spend time together.” She said she went dark because it did not require bleaching her hair and because it was more subtle. Photo by Josie Bradbsy.


THE DRIVE TO SUCCEED (March 26): Sophomore Zoe Rabinowitz reports that during her extended spring break she is learning to drive a manual transmission car in preparation to get her driver’s license. “It’s a perfectly safe idea for social distancing,” she tells us. Thanks, Zoe, for letting know what you are up to with your bonus free time. Photo courtesy of Rabinowitz.


A WOMAN OF LETTERS (March 25): Freshman Anna Fox’s writing has earned her an honorable mention in the freshman and sophomore section of the Fitzgerald Museum’s annual literary contest. As of March 15, her winning poem has also been published on the Fitzgerald Museum’s website. In honor of F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald’s 100th anniversary, this year’s theme was love and marriage. Because of her observations about high school romance, Fox decided to make the theme her own. “ I tried to take the concept of the cliche teenage romance and not really turn it on its head but subvert it, kind of,” Fox said. “I took all the pieces of it and wove my way through them.” She said that winning the award gives her a new confidence in her abilities. “[This experience] taught me that sometimes I do better at things than I think I will… and to take opportunities because you’ll never know if you don’t try.” (Ellen Fox)
ZOOM-A-FACULTY (March 25): The Maculty convened for virtual faculty meetings today first as a whole group and later in departments. The theme of the math department Zoom session, as reported by Angie Seckar-Martinez, was echoed in every faculty session today: “We miss you, Mac students!!!!!” Image courtesy of Seckar-Martinez.


Head custodian Daniel Sena thanks his fellow custodians for their hard work on March 24 and wishes them well until they are able to return to campus. Because of the mayor’s order to stay at home, the custodians will not report to work until April 13 at the earliest. The Austin ISD board of Trustees past a resolution on March 16 that authorized the the full and part time employees be paid on cancelled school and work days. (Dave Winter)


Forensics teacher Elise Baughman heads to the front exit of the main building late morning on March 24 after retrieving the resources to film a lab demonstration about how to remove ink from checks and other documents. Baughman said she would have preferred to have her students do the lab themselves but that a film demonstration would be better than just having them read about it. Later in the day, she posted a note to her Twitter account saying how much she has missed her students during the extended spring break. It was a good thing she made the trip to get her materials today. Just after she left, school officials received word the the city had announced a stay at home order that will go into effect at midnight. The order will prevent people from leaving their residences except for essential work. Prior to the order, teachers were able to come to campus today, five at a time if they had signed up for a 30-minute time slot the day before. Photo by Dave Winter.


HE’S GOT A FRIEND IN ME (March 24): Custodian Kenneth Sterling acquiesces to a photographer’s request that he pose for a portrait. The photographer tells him that he believes that seeing a picture of Sterling on the MacJournalism Instagram account will ease students’ minds about the uncertainty of the school year and disruption caused by COVID-19. The next statement Sterling made confirmed why the photographer feels this way. “It’s easy for me to smile for you because you are my friend,” he said. Photo by Dave Winter.


RAISE THE WOOF (March 24): Meet Alphie, the 9-year-old standard poodle who belongs to sophomore Veronica Britton. “Alphie likes contact,” Britton said. “If he thinks you’re going to pet him he will put his head right under your hand as a very aggressive hint. Alphie loves quarantine. He goes on lots more walks and likes having everyone at home all the time.” In the midst of the COVID-19 and quarantine chaos, there is one creature who is the clear winner: the dog. With an endless stream of attention, walks and cuddles, our canine friends are probably woofin’ with joy. Caption by Alysa Spiro. Photo courtesy of Britton.

Week of March 16 – March 22, 2020

Dave Winter
This image of the sidewalk along the Drag just west of the UT campus reveals the complete shutdown of the 40 Acres as UT prepares to begin online classes on March 30. The Shield talked with 10 Mac alums to find out how their college experience has been disrupted by COVID-19. Their stories are contained in the latest post to the Shield website. To read the entire exclusive story, please click the link in our bio. Story by Elisha Scott. Reporting by Ellen Fox and Janssen Transfer. Photo by Dave Winter.
Dave Winter
GUARDIANS OF OUR GALAXY: The custodial staff begins a deep clean of the Mac campus this morning by wiping down the tables in the cafeteria. Originally the deep clean was to take place during spring break, but because of today’s districtwide cancellation, administrators decided to start it today instead. Assistant principal Gabe Reyes urged all teachers to make their classrooms ready for the deep clean by 10 a.m. today. Photo by Dave Winter.

Week of March 9 – March 15, 2020

Grace Nugent
LAST WEEKEND TONIGHT: At the AISD tournament last weekend, the varsity baseball team won twice, lost twice and earned a tie. They opened on Thursday with a 6-5 victory over Del Valle. The offense was powered by doubles from Connor Boggs, Andy Honea and Booga De La Garza. Boggs and Honea also drove in two runs apiece. Easton Salinas was 2-3 with an RBI. Fabian Castillo earned the save in relief of starter Jacob Masters. The Knights lost on Friday against Weiss, 11-5. Cole Davis and Masters were both 2-3 in the game. Masters had a pair of RBI’s, and Davis drove in a run and scored one himself. Jacob Castillo doubled, scored and drove in a run. The Knights then lost their second Friday game, 3-1, to Anderson, in a pitcher’s duel. Yzmael Izquierdo earned the tough complete-game loss with five strikeouts and three earned runs allowed over six innings. Davis drove in the lone Knight run with a single. Marc Juarez also singled in the game for the Knights. The Knights got back in the win column on Saturday against Akins in their next tournament game. Masters went 2-3 with two runs scored, and Davis drove in three runs with one hit in two at-bats. Davis also started the game and struck out seven before yielding the mound to Fabian Castillo who pitched three innings allowing only a single run. The final game of the tournament for Mac was a 3-3 tie against Cedar Creek. Starter Ethan Vandament struck out seven, and De La Garza threw 1.1 scoreless innings in relief. Diego Barraz was 1-2 with 2 RBI’s and a run scored. The Knights were back in action today in the first day of the Leander ISD tournament with a 1 p.m. game against host Eastview and a 4 p.m. game against College Station. Photo by Grace Nugent.
Gabby Sherwood
AUSTIN RELAYS RECAP: Freshman Jolie Gabriel and sophomore Charlotte Stevens each captured first place in their respective events to lead a large contingent of Mac track and field athletes competing in the Austin Relays last Thursday at Burger Center. Gabriel earned first place in women’s junior varsity high jump by clearing 4 feet, 8 inches, a personal best. Stevens meanwhile cleared 9 feet even in women’s junior varsity pole vault to capture first place in that event. Senior Bryn Lewis was the lone second place finisher after taking second place in men’s junior varsity triple jump with a personal-best jump of 39 feet even. Sophomore Chris Riley had the best day among varsity runners winning third place in two men’s events: the 1600 meters (4:42.03) and the 3200 meters (9:57.00). In men’s varsity high jump, two Knights placed in the top six with jumps of five feet, six inches. O’mari Hil took third and Edward Johnson, sixth. Senior Lily Parker was the top finisher on the women’s varsity side. She earned a third-place finish in the 100 meters at 13:51. Parker was also fifth in the women’s varsity 200 meters at a personal-best 27.75. Like Parker, Johnathan Porter placed in the top six by earning personal-best times in two speed events. He was fourth in the men’s varsity 200 meters at 23.72 and sixth in the 100 meters at 11.66. Sophomore Selena De Jesus-Leyva also placed in the top five in two events. She was fourth in the women’s JV shot put with a personal-best 30 feet, 2.5 inches, and she was fifth in the women’s JV discus at a personal best 88 feet, 1 inch. Her teammate, freshman Aasja Wren was fourth in women’s JV discus at a personal best 88 feet, 8 inches. Junior Luke Allen placed fourth in the men’s junior varsity 800 meters with a personal record time of 2:13.54. Freshman Helena Finos was fourth in the women’s JV high jump at a personal-best 4 feet, 6 inches. Junior Brittney Williams finished sixth in the women’s varsity 400 meters with a season-record 1:08.49. Photo by Gabby Sherwood.

Week of March 2 – March 8, 2020

Madelynn Niles
ALL THAT JAZZ: Beneath the lavish, lilac lights of downtown Parker Jazz Club, seniors Joe Roddy play trumpet at the McCallum Jazz Ensemble’s gig last Sunday evening. The showcase featured a variety of music — from New Orleans style jazz tunes to originals performed by The Point — as well as raising funds for the program, each moment glittering under the brightly colored fluorescent lights of the club. “It was a really cool experience getting to play at such a unique venue,” senior saxophone player Richard Giro stated. “It’s a totally different experience performing at a jazz club like that.” Junior trombone player Jacob Martinez agreed, stating that because the gig took place at a jazz club, it was “a relaxing environment where you could just let go”. Photo by Madelynn Niles.

Week of Feb.24 – March 1, 2020

THEY’RE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER: What started out as a perfectly normal girls soccer Senior Night ceremony on Monday night evolved into something special thanks the convergence of two sentimental ingredients: a hug between a head coach and her injured senior midfielder and the very appropriately titled “High School Musical” song, “We’re All in This Together.” The simultaneous impact of these two heart tugs led to a tearful varsity meeting at midfield that was part embrace, part mosh pit. The tableau was replicated by a JV team meeting closer to the visitors’ stands at House Park. “It was a very special and emotional night,” senior Karen Esparza told MacJournalism. “I loved it. Of course it would have been better if I played, but it was still cool to finally experience [Senior Night].” Esparza is out for the season after knee surgery, but she embraced Coach Stephanie Watson and thanked her for all her support throughout her injury and now rehabilitation. “As soon as I turned around, I saw everyone crying and running towards me to hug me. I think everyone was emotional for the seniors, but a little more towards me because they know how hard it was for me to not be able to play. Also, they’re gonna miss me, and I’m going to miss them … a lot.” The poor Crockett Cougars had to step on to the pitch and challenge this powerfully motivated and emotionally charged Knight squad. The result was a decisive 4-0 Knight victory that was never in doubt. We’ll post about that tomorrow. Photo by Dave Winter
Dave Winter
BLUE AND GOLD: The awards ceremony of the Austin Dance Classic at Vandergrift High School started as well as it possibly could have for the @mhs_bluebrigade. After being called up as a solo finalist in the large public school category, junior Matthew Vargas stood before the dancers crowded at the other end of the gym and waited as competition officials announced the winners in reverse order from 10th place to first place. After eight dancers had been announced only Vargas and Vandergrift’s Laura Parrish remained to be announced. When Parrish was announced as the first runner-up, the dancers in the @macbluebrigade section erupted in applause because they knew that Vargas had won first place. Then as icing on an already tasty cake, Vargas was selected to be the last of three call-backs to perform their solo routines during the awards ceremony, and his performance of his new-and-improved solo routined set to Queen’s “We are the Champions,” (a perfect song considering why he was dancing an encore) elicited thunderous applause from a supportive crowd. Moments later, Vargas was back at the podium after winning first place with partner Addie Seckar-Martinez in the duet category. At that moment, director Nancy Honeycutt Searle told this reporter that no matter what else happened at the ceremony, it was already a great day for the Blue Brigade. But then it got even better. So much better that it was kind of hard for a regular person to keep track of it all. Luckily, in addition to being an accomplished dance team director, Searle is also really good at taking notes. The officers won Best in Class among large high schools, a category that included two fantastic dance teams in Bowie and Cedar Ridge. The officers also received a Gold Award, a Sweepstakes Award and a Gussie Nell Davis Award for earning at least 90 out of a possible 100 points on at least three routines. The officers also earned Judge’s Awards for their contemporary and lyrical routines. Photo by Dave Winter


Week of Feb. 17- Feb. 23, 2020

Anna Bausman
SATURDAY SETBACK: The boys’ varsity lost 4-1 to Navarro at Noack on Saturday. The teams were evenly matched early, and thanks to some stellar saves from Knight goalkeeper Bryn Lewis, the game stayed even. After drawing a foul in the box, the Vikings converted a penalty kick for an early lead. Thanks to some effective passing, Jake Anderson advanced the ball in close and converted his chance to tie the score at 1 before halftime. Things went south for the Knights in the second half. The Vikings were able to possess the ball, break down the defense and scored to make it 2-1. Two penalty kick goals and a red card later, the Vikings absconded with a 4-1 win that left the Knights still searching for a breakthrough win to turn their season around. In recent seasons, the Knights have played much better in the second half of the district season. Hopefully, that history can inspire a Tuesday turnaround against LBJ as the second half of the district season commences at Nelson Field. Games times: JV-B at 4:45 p.m., JV-A at 6 p.m. and varsity at 7:30 p.m. Photo by Anna Bausman

Week of Feb. 10- Feb. 16, 2020

Bella Russo
FASHION FORWARD: The “Scrapbook” themed fashion show featured 25 original clothing lines each designed and modeled. The show was also directed and ran by students with the help of sponsor Kenneth Rodgers. At the end of the night, three designers were named winners of the fashion show: sophomore Ryan Honza won third place, senior Shaine Rozman won second place, and Julia Kay Smith was named the first-place winner and awarded a 500 dollar scholarship from the McCallum cinematic arts program. “When I heard my name called I was so surprised because I had really just gone into the show to have fun and not worry about any of the competition,” Smith said. “The best part of tonight was getting to watch all my models walk with the music and get to walk down the runway with them and see all my friends. I just always feel my happiest and most exciting walking down the runway.”Photo by Bella Russo

Week of Feb. 3- Feb. 9, 2020

Dave Winter
SUPER BALL HALFTIME SHOW: In addition to tonight’s marquee matchup in District 25-5A boys basketball, @macbluebrigade will be performing at halftime.
Ian Clennan
BREWING UP A BATTLE OF THE BANDS: A collection of student musicians from McCallum and LASA staged a battle of the bands concert on Feb. 1 at Lazarus Brewing Company on East Sixth Street. After four acts from LASA opened the concert, four different bands from McCallum took the stage, among them Kaya Maisey, Jay’s Girlfriend, Merlin and The Point. “There were roughly 50-60 people actively dancing in the crowd and then maybe like another 75 people there as well,” senior Joe Roddy said. Roddy is a part of The Point, a fusion band, along with senior Jack Montesinos. “I like having fun on stage,” Roddy said. “We just get up there and have a good time. It’s my favorite thing about performing. I also love the involvement from the crowd. Our manager Dalton James would get the crowd real hyped up and literally two or three seconds after starting a song the entire crowd would start moshing.” Technically, the Micro-Moon production did not indicate a clear winner of the battle; however based on the volume of the audience during the entirety of the show, the concert was deemed a success for both schools. Photo by Ian Clennan.

Week of Jan. 27- Feb. 2, 2020

Anna Bausman
SHARING THE ROCK: The Knights entered the Crockett gym on Tuesday night at far less than full strength missing three starters and desperate for a win after consecutive losses in district play. They left the Crockett gym with a much needed 55-48 win that evened their District 25-5A record at 4-4. Rob Wade led all scorers with 17 points, but he had critical help in the scoring department from a balanced team effort that included John Wade’s 11 points, Sam Werkenthin’s 10 and Jakob Broaders’ eight points. Northeast defeated Lockhart at Lockhart, 62-55, on Tuesday, preventing a four-way tie between the Raiders, Lions, Knights and Rebels. Host LBJ knocked off Travis, 73-56. Northeast is in third place at 5-3, the Knights and Rebels are tied at 4-4, and the Lions have dropped to 3-5. There is still a lot of basketball for the Knights to play, but Friday’s game at Northeast and Tuesday’s game at home against Travis will go a long way toward figuring out who advances to the state playoffs in District 25-5A. Photo by Anna Bausman

Week of Jan. 20- Jan. 26, 2020

Annabel Winter
CLOSE CALL: The host Navarro Vikings only had enough players for one subvarsity game, so they elected to send their freshmen out the challenge the freshman Knights, and the decision produced a very competitive came. Tied at 13, the Vikings built a led that the rest of the way, but the game Knights did not go down with a fight. Coach Joshua Amy said the comeback was a team effort. “Breon Green and Jaden Stewart really played like team captains and communicated well,” Amy said. “They rarely get off the court. Breon has done a great job stepping into a role he hasn’t played yet: being our point guard. With two of our starters out, it took him a little bit to get acclimated to the role, but he showed tons of potential. When his shot is on, he is fun to watch.” He also had high praise for Stewart. “Jaden is our big body post player who has the ability to go coast to coast at any moment. He commands the paint and is the backbone of the team right now.” Amy also singled out the defensive effort of Shamar Hose and Deion McClain Martinez. Green led the charge as the Knights widdled away at the Viking lead until they had time for one last possession trailing by three points. The Knights had several good looks at a game-tying 3-pointer, but the basketball gods frowned on overtime as the game ended in favor of the home team, 35-32. Photo by Annabel Winter.


Madelynn Niles
BEADS AND BANDS: Sophomore Cora Green focuses in on a warm up moments before her performance as a part of the McCallum Symphonic Band — one of the four groups showcased on Jan. 25 at the program’s annual fundraising show, Mardi Grazie. Photo by Madelynn Niles.

Week of Jan. 13- Jan. 19, 2020

Caleb Melville
SOARING PAST THE EAGLES: The McCallum Lady Knights breezed to a sweeping 5-0 win over the Cedar Creek Eagles Friday. Junior Avery Miller opened up scoring for the Knights, followed by sophomore Kyla Murphy off of an assist from sophomore Mia Gomez, and an Eagles’ own goal off of a corner kick and then Gomez added a goal of her own with an assist from senior Karen Esparza to extend the lead to 4-0 at the half. The second half was slower offensively but junior Hannah Zuniga added a fifth goal from a penalty kick after Murphy was fouled in the box. The Knights defense and junior goalkeeper Lindsey Plotkin held strong to keep the shutout. “We felt good going into it,” Gomez said. “We played them in a scrimmage last season and beat them 2-0, but we still had to get the confidence going in.” The Knights’ next game will be their first home game of the season Tuesday against Elgin at Nelson Field. Photo and reporting by Caleb Melville.

Week of Jan. 6 – Jan. 12, 2020

Esme Moreno Bernacki
AN UNSETTLED SCORE: The JV girls soccer teams from Anderson and McCallum have now played twice, a scrimmage in December and a tournament game on Saturday morning and they still haven’t settled the score between friendly neighborhood rivals. In fact, neither team has scored … period. For the second time, the two teams left the pitch scoreless when the teams shut each other out on a chilly day at Noack Field 1. Sydney Wallace appeared to break the deadlock with a goal midway through the second half, but the goal was disallowed because of an offsides call. Freshman midfielder Tallulah Wilson said that the game was evenly matched but that the Knights pressed the attack in the second half. Sophomore forward Anna Bausman said, “We had a lot of opportunities but couldn’t finish them.” The draw was the team’s second of the JV tournament at Noack. The Knights won their third game, 5-0, over Travis, played Saturday afternoon at McCallum. Photo by Esme Moreno Bernacki

Week of Dec. 30, 2019 – Jan. 5, 2020

Evelyn Griffin
A “GRAND” ENTRANCE: The hallways were dark on Monday morning, Dec. 30. The classrooms were silent. For the cast and crew of Grand Hotel assembled in the McCallum Arts Center, however, it was business as usual as they prepared for opening night at the end of January. MacTheatre did take off New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, but on Jan. 3, the tech crew was back at work building the set and today after more than three weeks of rehearsal, the cast of MacTheatre’s spring musical, Grand Hotel began its first run-through. “This run-through is going to be pretty rough,” sophomore dance ensemble member Lucy Nichols said before it got underway this afternoon, “but I know we’ll get it together. We’re moving at a good pace.” Sophomore Mollie King agreed.”At first, I was a little worried that we were going to be too slow, but we actually seem to know what’s going on.” King plays a telephone operator in the show. “I get to have a lot of fun with my part and make it my own,” she said. “The set is minimal, so the ensemble brings the hotel to life.” Director Joshua Denning said he looks forward to the next stages MacTheatre will take to bring the production to life and before a live audience. “We worked a lot of things out. I know that it can get better than it was today and that it will,” he said. Performances begin on Jan. 30 and end on Feb. 9. These pictures are from rehearsal on Dec. 30. (1) The Grand Hotel staff blocks a scene. (2) Telephone operators sophomore Sydney Lowe, junior Amelie Chaouat, sophomore Mollie King and sophomore Lila Plummer. (3) Denning gives notes to freshman Rhett Shields. (4) The full cast receives notes. Photos and caption by Evelyn Griffin

Week of Dec. 23- 29, 2019

Kennedy Weatherby
KNIGHTS WIN FINAL GAME AGAINST PFLUGERVILLE: On Saturday, December 28th, the boy’s varsity basketball team played the Pflugerville Panthers in their final game at the Hays Rebel Classic tournament. After a rough start to the game, the Knights fought hard to bring it back and won with a final score of 63-54. Leading the scoreboard were juniors Rob Wade with 19 points and Albert Garza with 18. “It was a great game tonight,” Garza said, “we were all clicking well and were just all on the same page.” Photo by Kennedy Weatherby.

Week of Dec. 16- 22, 2019

Annabel Winter
How high the boys varsity team soars this season depends on how well junior Rob Wade and his teammates step into some big shoes to fill. In Friday’s 54-51 overtime non-district loss to Weiss at the Delco Center, Wade demonstrated the dunking ability that has become something of a trademark so far this season. “We executed our game plan well but missed easy shots and free throws,” Wade said of the loss. “One positive we can take from this game is that our team never quits.” After a 51-39 loss to Round Rock on Thursday night, the Knights are 6-7 in non-district play. Photo by Annabel Winter.

Week of Dec. 9- 15, 2019

Risa Darlington-Horta
FOSSE FOREVER: Though American dancer and choreographer Bob Fosse, whose ideas and creativity shook the dance world, passed away Dec. 10, 1987, the McCallum Dance Company felt his presence through Valerie Pettiford, a guest artist who was a colleague and alumni of Fosse, and her assistant, Gabriela Garcia. Pettiford and Garcia lead MAC dancers through a series of warm-ups and exercises that practiced Fosse technique. Following these exercises, Pettiford and Garcia taught each class a different combination of choreography from a Bob Fosse show. Despite the amount of material learned throughout the class, the class energy was supportive and uplifting. “Ms. Pettiford’s teaching made it feel like we were actually in New York,” said Lilly Brown, a dance major and member of the Pre-Professional Company. “It was super fun and created an environment of motivation and inspiration.” McCallum dance instructors Natalie Uehara and Rachal Murray also participated in the masterclass. “I felt the spirit of Mr. Fosse in the black box today,” said Natalie Uehara. “It was so intense and inspirational at the same time.” Photo by Risa Darlington-Horta.
Bela Tapperson
JINGLE BELL JAZZ: As finals and winter break rapidly approach, band celebrated the festive season with their annual holiday concert on Monday, Dec. 9. Many band members even dressed up in red and green to add to the holiday spirit. The evening started off with a selection of songs from jazz band featuring their vocalist Maryanna Tollemache. After that, the percussion section performed a few pieces they’ve been working on, preparing for their upcoming performance at the Midwest Clinic in Chicago. “It was crazy to see how much they have on their plate,” clarinetist Isobel Buffum-Robbins said, “And [they] still put out such a good product.” Finally, the full McCallum Band went on stage with five pieces: Sleigh Ride, Polar Express, Still Still Still, Three Moods of Hanukkah, and Christmas Festival. “I’ve always had fun during winter concerts but this year was different,” said junior Kyle Davis. “The audience was massive compared to years previous and that helped build a lot of people’s confidence. To know that every person out there is excited to hear you play just makes you feel so happy and more in spirit.” Photo by Bela Tapperson.

Week of Dec 2- 8, 2019

Steven Anzures
ACE OF DOUBLE BASS: The McCallum orchestra had a rare opportunity on Monday when UT Butlersom double bass professor Joel Braun dropped in for a master class. “He’s a new professor at UT, so it was cool,” senior Jack Montesinos, who had the opportunity to perform for Braun during the session, said. “It was everyone’s first time meeting him.” While it was Braun’s first master class at McCallum, it added to a long list of places where he has taught them. According to UT’s Butler School of Music website, Braun has presented master classes at the Universidad Nacional de Música in Lima, Perú, the University of Iowa, the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, Michigan State University, the Cleveland Institute of Music, the University of Oregon, and the Interlochen Center for the Arts. Montesinos told MacJournalism he was under the gun a bit because he did not know beforehand that Braun was coming to Mac so he had to scramble to figure out what to play. Despite this challenge, Montesinos said he learned a lot from Braun. “He taught me a lot about my bow control and my posture when I play. He [also] had a lot of funny analogies.” Photo by Steven Anzures.

Week of Nov. 25- Dec 1, 2019

HIGHLANDERS TOPPLED: The freshman basketball team won its first game of the season today, defeating the St. Andrews Highlanders. The game was back and forth with lead changes and foul calls. The Knights built an early 11-point lead but the Highlanders trimmed it to three by halftime at 20-17. The fourth quarter was climactic. With three minutes left, the Knights were up by three when St. Andrews sank a game-tying 3-pointer. Charlie Weatherby made the game-winning shot in the final minute of the game when he converted a free throw. “When I was on that line, it was so nerve-wracking,” Weatherby said, “[It was] one of the most pressured moments I can remember.” Weatherby said that after two tough losses to start the season the win shows the boys that hope is not lost and that they have the drive and the ability to win more games this season. Photo by Annabel Winter.

Week of Nov. 18- 24, 2019

Madelynn Niles
STEELING THE KNIGHT: Senior Lily Parker, along with the rest of the two McCallum steel drums classes focus in as they perform in the cafeteria for faculty, family members, and students at their annual showcase. The performance, which took place Tuesday night, featured a variety of songs by both groups, including “Three Little Birds” by Bob Marley and “People Get Ready” by The Impressions. Senior Sarah Derion feels that the environment in Knights of Steel is unlike that of a typical band class. “It’s very different than marching band,” she stated. “It’s laid back and also has really fun music… it’s cool at these concerts to see the other class period and look at what we’re doing from a different perspective.” Photo by Madelynn Niles.

Week of Nov. 11- 17, 2019

Dave Winter
VARSITY REACHES END OF THE ROAD FOR 2019: The Knights threw everything they had at the District 11-5A D1 champion Cedar Park Timberwolves–a halfback pass on the game’s opening play, an onside kick to open the second half, a fake punt–and all of them worked. When Caleb Brown dashed 29 yards to tie the score at 7 at the end of the first quarter, it seemed like the Knights were primed to pull an upset. Even after that, in the second quarter, the Knights forced a fumble on one drive and the defense forced the T-Wolves into a fourth and 13 on another. But neither moment thwarted the potent Cedar Park offense, which did not lose possession after the fumble and converted the first down to set up the third touchdown of the second quarter, a scoring stretch that gave the T-Wolves a comfortable lead they would not relinquish. After the game, a proud Coach Gammerdinger congratulated his players for their effort and for how well they played. He thanked the seniors for carrying the torch of the Mac football tradition and challenged the returning players, particularly the large group of sophomores who earned valuable experience throughout the 2019 season, to pick that torch up and carry it in 2020 and beyond. Photo by Dave Winter.

Week of Nov. 4- 10, 2019

Risa Darlington-Horta
MASSIVE MICRO-MOON MOSH: Micro-moon, a student run production company, put on its first music festival on Friday to raise funds for McCallum’s AV program. The festival included musical performances from junior Merlin, juniors Jay Mathias and William Dooley, as well as seniors Joe Roddy and Jack Montesinos with special guest drummer Paulo Zambarano. The concert was held at the Austin Film School in East Austin, which donated the space for the event. Micro-moon was founded by junior Alex Martinez as a place for student artists to make their art happen. “The whole idea behind Micro-moon is that art can be in its most raw form,” said senior Stella Shenkman, the show’s sound engineer senior. “You don’t have to learn fancy CGI and effects in order to create something beautiful.” Martinez had the idea for the event after he saw The Point, Joe Roddy and Jack Montesinos’ band, perform. “It made me realize that Micro-moon could expand outside of just filmmakers and could help out McCallum’s music scene,” Martinez said. Shenkman has been involved with Micro-moon in the past as a member McCallum’s AV program. “Alex and I work so well together because our work ethics are very similar. He’s a really amazing kid with all of his big ideas, so it was so cool to make this event happen.” The musical artists for the show were all McCallum students who pursue music and songwriting in their free time. “It’s a dream of mine to perform in front of people and make them dance and the feeling of this dream being realized for the first time sent me through the roof,” junior Jay Mathias said. The event raised roughly $700 for the AV program. Caption by Julia Kay Smith. Photo by Risa Darlington-Horta.

Week of Oct. 28- Nov. 03 , 2019

CAN YOU DIG IT? On Disco Night, junior defensive specialist Bridget Russo answers with an emphatic, “Yes!” And she wasn’t alone. The Knights may have come up short on the scoreboard Friday night in their home finale against Dripping Springs, but it wasn’t for a lack of trying. Photo by Olive Embry.

Week of Oct. 21 – 27 , 2019

Ella Irwin
LIVE STREAMING: The penultimate day of Pink Week was filled with fun and fundraising in the courtyard as the PALS were pelted with water in increasingly creative ways as lunchtime progressed. Snowcone sales were brisk as the line was often four of five customers deep. All funds raised support the @bcrcoftx. Photo by Ella Irwin.

Week of Oct. 14- 20, 2019

ELEMENTAL: The @macyouthdanceco began the two-show run of the fall dance concert, “Elemental,” Saturday night in the MAC. If you missed Saturday night’s show or even if you didn’t, there is a second performance Sunday at 3 p.m. in the MAC. Photo by Risa Darlington Horta.

Week of Oct. 07- 13, 2019

FASHION INFLUENCE: Held at the Pershing event center last night was “Influenced”, a benefit fashion show produced by McCallum senior Julia Kay Smith. The show included fashion lines walked and created entirely by students. Designing these lines were McCallum seniors Sydney Buford, Julia Kay Smith, and Shaine Rozman, we well as a line by St. Stephens senior Anna Nasi. “Influenced’ has been a dream of mine ever since I first took an interest in the world of fashion.” Smith said. “Whether it was reading Vogue or watching the haute couture shows or New York Fashion Week.” Fashion was not the only thing showcased tonight, the event also included a gallery of student artwork featuring McCallum seniors Louisa Najar, Grace Milligan, Ruby Henson, and Sara Miliken. The title of the event, “Influenced” describes the artists intent with their work showcased. Each of the artists involved pulled inspiration from iconic artists throughout history such as Mark Rothko, Andy Warhol, Frida Khalo, and more. Photo by Stella Shenkman.

Week of Sept. 30- Oct. 6, 2019

A PANORAMIC PICTURE LOG: The senior class gathered on the practice field to take the annual panoramic picture this morning. Under an uneven sky with patches of clouds and shards of sunshine, seniors posed in a ’20 formation, then took the traditional panoramic and a second one with a silly pose. Photo by Dave Winter.

Week of Sept. 23- 29, 2019

STUDENTS JOIN CLIMATE COALITION: Students of all ages skipped school on March 15, clawing the chance to teach others about climate change was a more pressing educational issue than attending their classes. Photo by Stella Shenkman.

Week of May 13- 19, 2019

Stella Shenkman
OUR TOWN IS OPEN: Thursday night, MacTheatre’s spring straight play, Our Town, debuted in the FAB Theatre. “The script is timeless,” lighting designer and junior Zoe Griffith said. “It covers the experiences of families that have been occurring since the beginning of time. It includes birth, marriage and death.” Photo by Stella Shenkman.

Week of May 6- 12, 2019

Scarlett Houser
SPRING FLING: On Wednesday night in the MAC, four of the McCallum bands, the wind ensemble, the symphonic band, the concert band and the jazz band performed in the spring concert. The spring concert was also the last concert for the senior band members, and awards were given out to outstanding band students. The Louis Armstrong Award (given for outstanding jazz performance) was awarded to senior Dan Thomas. Senior Henry Stanford won the John Phillip Sousa Award, and the Outstanding Musician Award was given to senior Jon Forbes. Honors were also given to UIL State Band members senior Chance Green, junior Clifton Pike and sophomore Jacob Martinez. Photo by Scarlett Houser.

Week of April 29- May 5, 2019

Bella Russo
Seniors Melissa Marquez and Alex Lopez dance with the rest of the quinceaneras after being introduced. This was Marquez’s second year taking part in the Quinceanera and her first year organizing the event and choreographing the group dance with the help of Malhali Domingo. “My favorite moment was the dance,” Marquez said. ” Everyone did an amazing job and at the end, it looked perfect. Some of them may have messed up but they kept going and they never seemed to hesitate.” Photo by Bella Russo.

Week of April 22- 28, 2019

Risa Darlington-Horta
LIGHTEN UP: Seniors Elesia Zarzoza, Crystal Suarez-Vasquez and Melany Reese dance together to the “Wobble” as it got closer to prom king and queen being announced. “I really liked how everyone was so glammed out and open to having fun,” Reese said. “It was a good mood and feeling to be around.” Reporting by Celeste Montes de Oca. Photo by Risa Darlington-Horta.
Selena De Jesus
CELEBRATING AVID SUCCESS: Twenty-seven AVID seniors from McCallum joined AVID seniors from other AISD high schools at the AVID Cording Ceremony on April 22 at the AISD Performing Arts Center. AVID senior Elesia Zarzoza was the featured speaker at the ceremony. “[I was] literally terrified,” Zarzoza told MacJournalism. ” I thought I was gonna pass out (on stage). I am the first to go to college. I have gotten three scholarships so far, one from Kingsville, one from Breakthrough and the Virgil C. Scott Black Layers Association Scholarship. AVID has been my safe place. It has taught me how to be unapologetically me and that what I have to say is important because it will change the world. I’m kind of scared to be the first one, but I’m glad that I will get to experience the failures and help my little cousins and younger generations when it’s there turn.” The following is an excerpt from the speech she delivered today: “We are not bound to the labels that the world has worked so hard to make us remember. We are not just males, females, minorities, black, white, Latino. We are who we decide to be.” Photos and reporting by Selena De Jesus.

Week of April 15- 21, 2019

Elly Schottman
BOYS LACROSSE ENDS SEASON WITH CLOSE LOSS TO BOWIE: The Knights lacrosse team lost 9-6 against the visiting Bowie Bulldogs at Lamar Middle School on Saturday. The game was the team’s senior appreciation day and fittingly two seniors scored goals. Gregory James opened up the scoring for the Knights after the bulldogs rolled off six unanswered. The Knights scored again when Griffin sophomore Tobe Chanow scored on a rebound shot. This made the score 6-2 going into halftime. After the half the Knights let in two more goals before Chanow scored again off an assist by James and LASA senior Jonathan Yu started the fourth quarter with a goal on a fast break. Chanow and Yu both scored again with senior Ivan Del Rio assisting Chanow’s goal. The Knights finish the season 1-13 and see six seniors graduating, who they honored at the end of the game. Congrats to seniors: Gabe Dancy, Luke Thiessen, Ivan Del Rio, Gregory James, Jonathan Yu, and Bryan Crowley.

Week of April 8- 14, 2019

Dave Winter
A KNIGHT AT THE MAC: The Blue Brigade leaped into its two-show spring dance show run Friday night in the MAC with a show that featured some encore presentations from pep rallies, halftime shows and competition routines. There were special guest performers of all ages and two prominent hosts from Friday night lights and also the Mr. McCallum pageant.

Week of April 1- 7, 2019

Gabby Sherwood
MONDAY MUSIC AND MASTERPIECES: Junior Cassie Hartle demonstrates her artistic ability on Monday by live-painting in the MAC lobby. Day 1 of Academy Week also featured classical guitar, piano players and an outdoor concert with sax appeal.

Week of March 25- 31, 2019

Grace Nugent
HITTING ROCKETS AT CROCKETT: The varsity baseball team pounded out 15 hits in a 10-2 victory over the Crockett Cougars Tuesday night at Northwest Park. The run support was more than enough for starting pitcher Ace Dietz (5-1) who struck out a season-high eight batters over six innings, allowing only one earned run, four hits and four walks. The win pushes the Knights district record to 5-0 and extended their win streak to eight games. The team has also won nine of its last 10 games. Cole Davis got the offense started with a one-out single in the bottom of the second. Davis then stole second and scored on Owen’s RBI single. In the top of the fourth, the Knight defense helped extinguish a Crockett threat by turning a 6-4-3 double play (SS De La Garza to 2B Ethan Vandament to 1B Easton Salinas) to end the half inning. In the bottom of the fourth the Knights scored five runs on five hits, the big knocks coming on Alec Worden’s one-out RBI double and De La Garza’s two-out, two-run single. Worden scored on a nifty double steal. Noah Cooley stole second, allowing Worden to steal home. In the bottom of the sixth, Jacob Castillo singled home Cooley, who was running for Owen after his third single of the game. After a Vandament bunt single, De La Garza blasted a three-run homer over the left-field wall, one game after he hit a grand slam to nearly the same spot against Lockhart. Diego Barraz closed out the game with a perfect seventh, including two strikeouts.

Week of March 11- 17, 2019

Stella Shenkman
PROTESTING FOR THE PLANET: Students, parents, and activists from all over Austin gathered on the State Capital lawn Friday morning to raise awareness for global warming and protest the government outlook on climate change. The event was student organized and featured speakers such as Dr. Pritesh Gandhi, a candidate for the District 10 seat in the House of Representatives, who started off the event. “For a long time, young people like you have all relied on adults like us to take action,” Gandhi told the crowd. “To safeguard our air, to safeguard our water, to safeguard our soil… But in many respects, we have failed you.” Many adults at the event held signs with words of support for the activism of the students and children attending. “You all know that we have to move forward now,” Gandhi said. “We can’t wait for action and that’s why we are here today.”
Isabella Dietz
WHEN IT RAINS ON THE THE RAIDERS, IT POURS: Daisy Elizondo and Melany Reese were both a perfect 3-for-3 at the plate, and Ciara Medrano, Julia Crofut, Apolonia Briceno and Megan Shieh were a perfect 2-for-2 as just about everything went right for McCallum softball Tuesday night in a 19-1 drubbing of Reagan at Noack. The Knights scored 10 runs in the bottom of the first and nine more in the bottom of the second to knock out the Raiders after two and a half innings of play. Diamante Diaz drove in four runs, and Reese pitched three innings with five strikeouts for the run-rule shortened complete-game victory.

Week of March 4- 10, 2019

David Winter
PAINT IT PURPLE (FOR ONCE): PALS sponsor Mr. Cowles smiles as he gets his face painted purple for International Women’s Day on Friday. The McCallum PALS members offered free purple face painting to any students and teachers who wanted to celebrate the day.
Anna Bausman
Junior Gage Bausman plays alongside sophomore Will Tanner and junior Sam Buford during the Chamber performance. The performance is a continuation of the Battle of the Bands fundraiser that helps the guitar program fund scholarships for students in the program that can’t afford to attend the trips with the ensemble. As a prize for winning the Battle of the Bands in November, Deva members Tomas Marrero, Memphis Lamont, Janssen Transsier and Asher Loewenstern performed at Stubbs tonight along with the Austin Cobb Trio.

Week of Feb. 25- March 3, 2019

Madelynn Niles
DRUMROLL PLEASE: In the MAC Friday night, the McCallum percussionists put on their annual “Knights of Percussion” showcase before a packed crowd. The Knights’ festivities featured a number of performances ranging from student solos to large ensemble songs to guest appearances from Lamar Middle School percussion students. “I really enjoyed the variety of music that the different ensembles performed, some of which I heard for the very first time,” said percussionist Julian Smith, a sophomore.

Week of Feb. 18- 24, 2019

Gabby Sherwood
KEEPING TRACK ON MAC: Senior varsity high jumper Ian Shaw reaches a school record in the high jump, clearing a height of 6 feet, which landed him in fifth place. The track team traveled to Dripping Springs High School on Saturday to compete in the Tiger Relays. In a very competitive field, the Knights fared well in several events. Senior Deron Gage came in ninth place in the varsity 100-meter sprint, and senior Kennedy Austin claimed a personal record and 15th place in the same event. Junior varsity sprinter Caleb Brown finished in seventh place in the 100 meters with a personal record. In the 200 meters, varsity runners Deron Gage and Cruz Escobar finished back to back in eighth and ninth place. The Knights also enjoyed success in their various field events. In shot put, varsity junior Kyla Gibson and JV freshman Selena De Jesus Levya came home with personal records and top 20 placements.
Annabel Winter
NO ILL WILL: In Derek Gower and Mike McLean’s Lighting on Location session at the Association for Texas Photography Instructors Winter Conference, Macjournalism photographers Annabel Winter and Grace Nugent were able to take photos of up-and-coming rap artist iLLaKriss. They learned about studio lighting, flash photography and the importance of ambient light then got a chance to practice those skills by taking portraits for iLLaKriss, a Dallas native, who performed on the Fox TV show “The Four.” Aside from producing and writing his own music, iLLaKriss also designs his own clothes called iLLaWear. “My music is more positive and unique then what is on the radio,” he said. “My thing is don’t be afraid to be unique.”

Week of Feb. 11- 17, 2019

Gabby Sherwood
MR. MAC: The 2019 Mr. McCallum, Gabe Williams, waves to the crowd after his victory was announced. After three rounds of fierce competition, Williams was awarded both Mr. McSweetheart and the Mr. McCallum pageant crown Saturday evening in the MAC theatre. Eleven other senior boys competed in the interview, talent and swimwear rounds, hoping to win the audience’s votes with their ability and charm. Robert Gossard was the runner-up and Luke Thiessen was awarded Mr. Congeniality.
Kristen Tibbetts
K_9 PLAY TIME: Senior Sutton Ballard and Luca, an AISD drug dog, play a quick game of fetch in the main hallway. Luca, AISD’s sole drug dog, arrived at McCallum today along with her partner Officer Seagrave. Luca, whose training cost AISD $10,000, was excited to show off her obedience and tennis ball-catching skills for a crowd of students during sixth period before leaving to investigate the campus.

Week of Feb. 4- 10, 2019

Anna McClellan
DRAWING LESSONS: Senior Adrian Martinez dribbles past an opposing Travis player. The boys varsity soccer team played Travis to a 2-2 draw Saturday at House Park. Lucas Ramos De Barros scored (assisted by Marcel Lopez-Reed) as did Anthony Bataille (assisted by Luis Auyero). “The team played well,” fellow varsity player Jimmy Walker said, “but we need to work on maintaining and finishing the game.” The team has earned three draws and lost once in its last four.
David Winter
Although it could not technically be considered snow, on Friday, students and faculty were greeted with a small blast of hail heavy enough to divert a few Knights from their end of the six weeks studies. Starting during second period and continuing on-and-off throughout the day, many Knights were able to take advantage of the cold weather with a few minutes of fun.

Week of Jan. 28- Feb. 3, 2019

Annabel WInter
STAGE LEFT: The ensemble gestures alongside lead juniors Helena Laing and Tosh Arora at the end of the finale number.
Kristen Tibbetts
OVERCOMING ADVERSITY: Junior Jack Montisinos plats alongslide members of the Austin Symphony Orchestra. The symphony orchestra came to McCallum today to play for the students and with some distinguished members of the McCallum orchestra. This year’s theme is “overcoming adversity,” and all of the pieces played were by composers that were, at the time of the piece, had to overcome intense adversity. The orchestra played pieces by Beethoven, Lili Boulanger, Shostakovich, William Grant Still, Korngold, and then McCallum orchestra students joined in for a piece by Tchaikovsky.

Week of Jan. 21- 27, 2019

Kristen Tibbetts
MOVING ON UP: Senior Marianna Vanden Boutpractices her solo, Prelude One by Hietor Villa Lobos, before her turn to play for a judge at UIL Solo and Ensamble on Saturday. Vanden Bout, along with 15 other McCallum guitarists qualified to move on to state.
Lucy Marco
RAIDERS EDGE GIRLS VARSITY BY ONE POINT: The girls varsity basketball team lost a nailbiter on the road at Reagan Friday night by a final score of 30-29. The Knights hope to reverse their fortunes on Tuesday when they host last-place Travis in a district game. After a Friday trip to play first-place Dripping Springs, the girls will close the district season on Tuesday Feb. 5 with a home game against Lanier.
Bridget Cole
Students in Mr. Whiz’s AP Anotomy classes disected rats to study muscles. Senior Chloe Shields told us, “I was cutting around and I was nervous that I snipped a bit too deep, but all was good in the end. Honestly, I can’t say that I like dissecting. I feel like the bad guy from Texas Chain Saw Massacre.”

Week of Jan. 14- 20, 2019

Anna Bausman
VARSITY GIRLS 2, CEDAR CREEK: Center back Ellie Stites protects the goal by kicking the ball far out of range. The varsity girls soccer team completed a Noack sweep of Cedar Creek on Friday night thanks to the goal scoring of two varsity freshman: Carly Johnson and Mia Gomez. Sophomore Lindsey Plotkin earned the clean sheet in goal. The team has one more friendly (non-district game) before the district campaign begins on Friday.
Courtesy of Nancy Nitardy
FORE SURE: Emmett Sweeney shot a team-low 82 with teammate Zach Masterson right behind him at 83 as the Mac golf team enjoyed a strong showing Monday in a tournament hosted by Westlake at played at the Lost Creek Country Club. “The course was very narrow with lots of water,” Sweeney said. “None of us had played it before so overall [we posted] good scores.” Andrew Clay and Henry Sandlin had their personal best scores, and Paul Raper played his first tournament ever. The team’s next tournament is at Delware Springs.

Week of Jan. 7- 13, 2019

Bella Russo
AMAZING GRACIE: On Saturday night, the winner was announced for the 2019 benefit fashion show, senior Skel Gracie. Gracie was awarded a prize of $500 and the opportunity for her line to be featured and walked in a professional fashion show. “My archetype was ‘creature of nightmares’” Gracie told The Shield. “I drew inspiration from my own, personal nightmares, as well as the common themes of pop-horror like American horror story.” This is Gracie’s 2nd year designing in the fashion show, “My favorite part about making the line was the creativity I was able to have.” Gracie said. “Such as the problem solving aspect of a lot of the garments. I find the process of being able to take something from vague sketches to tangible, complete outfits really rewarding, and it’s always amazing to look back and realize like, ‘oh hey, I did that!” Photo by Bella Russo.
Risa Darlington-Horta
OFF TO AREA: Alto saxophone player Gavin Owens performs his TMEA audition for parents, friends and band directors alike to prepare for All_Area auditions just five days away. He and 15 other students played their selections and received feedback from the directors. “It really showed me what I need to work on in front of a big crowd,” clarinet player Ardis Warrenfells said. “It’s also helpful because the band directors are giving us feedback, which is important.”

Week of Dec. 31- Jan. 6, 2018-2019

David Winter
WHEEL POWER: Chemistry teacher Robert Lehman is the portrait of concentration during Carey West’s second pottery-wheel throwing session during the Maculty’s Teach Your Passion in-service in the Art 3 classroom in the MAC. All day, Maculty members engaged in a pair of 45-minute morning sessions in which teachers shared their disciplines and other fields of expertise with their colleagues before students arrived back at school.

Week of Dec. 24- 30, 2018

Lily Dashner
ALUMS 5, VARSITY 4: The boys varsity soccer team kicked off its 2019 campaign before the New Year on December 29th with a scrimmage game against the alumni. The alums, who outnumbered the varsity by about 10 players, prevailed in the game, 5-4, overcoming a stretch of game action where all 22 varsity players stormed the field at once. Coach Martin called the contest “a fun, chaotic game” in which no individual stats were kept.

Week of Dec. 18- 23, 2018

Courtesy of Galindo
WALL IN THE FAMILY: Ms. Galindo took her AVID seniors to Austin Bouldering Project for their holiday celebration today. “It was such an amazing way to wrap up the semester,” she said. “This was a new activity for most and was very much conquered by resilience and encouragement. We laughed, we climbed, and at the end, exchanged presents with our Secret Santa.”

Week of Dec. 10- 16, 2018

Lucy Marco
SEASONAL STRINGS: Tuesday night, the McCallum Sub-Non Varsity, Non-Varsity, Chamber Orchestra and Quartet performed their holiday selection of pieces wearing festive sweaters. “We’re all wearing Christmas sweaters and jeans, so it’s a lot more casual compared to other concerts,” said Chamber Orchestra cellist Max Darlington. “I’m really proud of my two friends, Ian Stripling and Anishka Wilner; they really killed it. We rehearsed for a long time, and I’m really proud of them for working so hard.”
Tobin Wine
BACKFIRE SPARKS CAR FIRE: Just after 1 p.m. December 10th, neighborhood resident Adam Rice was working on his car in the Dart Bowl parking lot. The car had backfired before, but when the hood started smoking, he knew he had to get out of the vehicle. When he opened the hood to examine the cause of the smoke, flames erupted from underneath. Rice tried to extinguish them with a towel, but the fire continued to reignite. His fuel line melted and caught fire, spraying gas everywhere. He immediately closed the hood and called the fire department. A bystander helped him put out most of the fire with an extinguisher, but unfortunately, it spread to the interior. Soon afterward, the whole car went up in flames. “It sucked.” was all Rice had to say about the event. Eventually, the fire department arrived to put out the fire, but Rice, who was trying to fix his car for a long time, thinks that he will have to start back at square one.

Week of Dec. 3- 9, 2018

Risa Darlington_Horta
BE OUR GUEST: Zara Terrazas Graham, along with the rest of McCallum’s Concert choir, sings “Be Our Guest” from “Beauty and the Beast” on Friday night’s Cabaret performance. The choir rehearsed this song for weeks prior to the show’s opening. Graham said, “It was pretty stressful with all the rehearsals, but we improved each time”.
Risa Darlington-Horta
HINY DANCERS: The McCallum Blue Brigade was among the 600 dancers from 24 Austin ISD schools that drew a crowded house at the AISD Performing Arts Center for the December 4th AISD Dance Spectacular.

Week of Nov. 26- Dec. 2, 2018

Olivia Capochiano
With infectious energy and catchy riffs, Deva (Janssen Transier, Tomas Marrero, and Asher Lowenstern as well as guitarist Memphis Lamont) perform an original song at McCallum Guitar’s annual Battle of the Bands. At the end of the night, Deva won the popular vote for best band, earning a gig playing at Stubb’s BBQ in March. “I’m really proud of the guys, they killed it,” Marrero said. “[This has] always been something I love and I hope to continue to do.”

Week of Nov. 19- 25, 2018

SEIZING THE HIGH GROUND: Junior Sam Werkinthin attempts to dribble past a St. Andrew’s defender. The boys varsity basketball team earned its first win of the young season this afternoon by defeating St. Andrew’s, 40-28, at Don Caldwell Gymnasium. Norman Boyd led all scorers with 21 points. Albert Garza chipped in 11. Kobe Dunbar paced the visiting Highlanders with nine points. Freshman Aiden Wright hit a pair of three throws in his varsity debut. The Knights hope to make it two pre-turkey victories in a row when they face the Bastrop Bears in their gym at 3 p.m. tomorrow. The freshman and JV games kickoff the tripleheader at 1 p.m.

Week of Nov. 12- 18, 2018

Kristen Tibbetts
CAFÉ PLAY: Two McCallum classical guitar quartets and six soloists performed at the HEB Mueller Café Sunday afternoon to promote and raise money for the guitar program. “It wasn’t easy since the guitar is a quiet instrument,” quartet member and soloist Richard Hernandez said when asked about the performance environment. “[It really] requires listening to each other in order to stay synchronized.”

Week of Nov. 5- 11, 2018

Risa Darlington-Horta
Pease Blossom (junior Julia Blackmon) stands onstage arguing with the mischievous Puck during Mactheatre’s final rehearsal of  “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” before opening night.  Director Adam Miller-Batteau surprised the cast at Wednesday’s dress rehearsal by telling them they would be doing their final rehearsal in an “Italian run.” An Italian run is when you run the whole show faster with more energy and exaggerated hand gestures.
Bella Russo
Wednesday at McCallum, parents, students and staff members filled the cafeteria for an AISD Budget Stabilization Task Force meeting to discuss potential options regarding the 2019 budget and solutions to the district’s $30 million dollar deficit. The meeting’s main focus was to get community feedback surrounding McCallum’s possible budget cuts, including debated cuts of fine arts funding and the introduction of a seven-block schedule. Seven community speakers voiced opinions at the meeting, including four Mac students and three AISD parents. Later on in the evening, a parent-led meeting met in the MAC to plan activism against school- and district-wide budget cuts. “The arts are very important to me,” said sophomore Denali Jah, one of the meeting’s student speakers and a member of the orchestra strand. “They’ve been a connector between me and my peers and the people I care about. Reducing funding inside any of these programs would be detrimental to them.”

Week of Oct. 29- Nov. 4, 2018

Gregory James
HOMECOMING KING AND QUEEN: At halftime of McCallum’s victory over Crockett at House Park on Nov. 1, seniors Dillon Guerrero and Ardis Warrenfells were crowned the homecoming king and queen. The rest of the homecoming court included junior prince and princess Cole Davis and Amelia Paul, duke and duchess Aydan Howison and Zoe Hutchens, and freshmen baron and baroness, Bobby Currie and Tracy Atoo.
Grace Nugent
DO YOUR JOB: Coach Thomas Gammerdinger talks with the defense after coming off the field during the Knights’ 42-3 win over Crockett. The Knights defense was able to hold Crockett to only three points in their Homecoming game.

Week of Oct. 22- 28, 2018

Olivia Watts
PRINCESS AND THE TEA: Sophomore Marlee Foster (Tiana) sings the last song of Saturday afternoon’s fourth annual Princess Tea Party fundraiser for Mactheatre. With a packed auditorium, children from all over Austin got to see their favorite princes and princesses.
Gregory James
ELECTION TIME IN TEXAS: Texas U.S. Senatorial candidate Beto O’ Rourke visited the campus of ACC Highland on the morning of Oct. 24 to get people to vote in the #midtermelections2018. O’Rourke spoke at polling places throughout Austin on Oct. 24, encouraging people to vote. He also visited Kealing Middle School.
Kelsey Tasch
Sophomore Bela Tapperson inspects the charred curtain Tuesday morning after the second fire in the MAC. Tapperson was shocked when she saw the Austin Fire Department’s post about the second fire on twitter. “I thought it was a mistake at first,” Tapperson said. “There were like 6 fire trucks here [yesterday] and we thought they put it all out.” Photo by Kelsey Tasch.

Week of Oct. 15- 21, 2018

A GOOD DAY TO PIE HARD: Science teacher Richard Whisennand stares down PAL Owen Scales. The MACulty were served a large helping of pie (shaving cream) in the pink week pep rally. Some of the other teachers pied were David Winter, Ann Marquez, coach Daniel Fuentes, and of course principal Mike Garrison.

Week of Oct. 8- 14, 2018

Annabel Winter
TRUE COLORS: Junior Eliza Dean-Polecheck and other Spectrum members set up a table with face paint and rainbow stickers during lunch. “So it is AISD PRIDE week so McCallum’s QSA which is our Queer-Straight Alliance, it’s called Spectrum, decided to come out here and do some face painting for pride and visibility and just to have fun…make the school a little brighter,” said Dean-Polacheck, also stating that she hopes the face-painting will spread awareness and tolerance. “It’s nice to get out of our little room for meetings and show pride and be vocal about it and then to celebrate and have fun with it. And were also showing our neverending support for people who are looking for it.”

Week of Oct. 1- 7, 2018

Elisha Scott
SERVING A WIN: Junior co-captain Richard Hernandez serves the ball during a singles match against Lanier. The tennis team beat Lanier with a score of 10-1 matches but lost to LBJ, 0-10 matches at the District Tournament. Coach Oakley Barber encouraged the team to play and have fun but not to worry about winning. They return to the courts to play Lockhart after school Wednesday in their final matches of the fall season.

Week of Sept. 24- 30, 2018

Ez Guenther
HE REALLY IS A MAC DADDY: Camila Gammerdinger made a brief appearance at Mac on Sept. 26 in order to inspect the Taco Shack trophy in the main office. After verifying that it was in its proper place, she headed for the hallway for a brief campus tour. When reporters encountered her there, they asked her for a statement about LBJ, and she declined comment.

Week of Sept. 17- 23, 2018

Gregory James
SHOOTING FOR THE STARMITES: The MacTheatre fall musical “Starmites” opened Thursday in the MAC at 7 p.m. The show centers around Eleanor (Maryanna Tollemache), a shy teenager who loves comic books, but whose mother (Lilah Guaragna) wants her to stop believing in the fantasy world in the books that have led Eleanor to the point of outbursts of terror in school. Eleanor is then summoned to Innerspace by the Starmites, a rag tag group of guardians named S’up S’up Sensaboi (Sam Richter), Ack Ack Hackerax (Javier Garcia), Diggity Razzle Dazzle (Duvall Bingham), and their leader SpacePunk (Tosh Arora) who wish to defeat the evil cruelty of Shak Graa (Matthew Hernandez).

Week of Sept. 10- 16, 2018

Noah Cirkiel
JUST KEEP SWIMMING: Practicing for their first meet, the members of the Mac swim team raced against each other tonight. Sophomore Marco Emami swims his 50 butterfly. “My favorite part of swimming is the overnight meets, hanging out with my friends, and getting food with the team after practice. My favorite stroke is butterfly. Although it’s a hard stroke, it’s really fun. I started swimming because I like being in the water and I thought it would be really fun.”

Week of Sept. 3- 9, 2018

Anna McClellan
NEITHER PAIN NOR HEAT: Junior Kristen Tibbetts pushes past her competition on the last stretch of the Saint Andrews Invitational varsity girls 5k. The varsity Boys finished in 13th overall while the JV boys were, 10th; the varsity girls, 14th; and the JV girls, 12th.
Bella Russo
A GOOD DAY TO BEAT LBJ: In an instant-classic five-set game against LBJ, the varsity volleyball team survived to complete a four-match home sweep of the Jags. The first set established the tone for the night as both teams battled it out in a long, frantic back-and-forth game. LBJ won the first set, 30-28, but the Knights pulled ahead to win the next two sets 25-18 and 25-16. Despite coming back from a 11-point deficit early on, MAC lost the fourth set 25-20, sending the team into a tiebreaking fifth set, where the Knights prevailed, 15-6. “I think we played really well, and we were able to learn from our mistakes,” junior hitter Carter Cordes said as the rest of her team celebrated their hard-fought victory. “Everything that could have gone right went right in the fifth set,” senior Libero Lindsey Wiley added. “We had been up and down, not only in the set but in the whole game, but we were able to come back and make a lot of really good hits and digs. It feels amazing.”

Week of Aug. 27- Sept. 2, 2018

Gregory James
CARRY THE TORCH: The varsity football team beat the Anderson Trojans 21-20 in the annual Taco Shack Bowl to break the tie between the two teams for the number of total wins in the series. Keeping with tradition, Taco Shack owner Orlando Arriaga was there to give the winning team the trophy, which has been McCallum for the past three years. The series now stands at 9-8. It was the first career win for Thomas Gammerdinger (Coach G) as head coach.

Week of Aug. 20- 26, 2018

Anna McClellan
3K ALL THE WAY: Freshman Chris Riley sprints through the course to keep ahead of the crowd at Saturday’s Lockart Cross Country Invitational, the first race of the 2018 season. Riley placed third in the JV boy’s division, finishing at 10:44. Even though he placed well, Riley said afterward that the race was more difficult than he anticipated. “I didn’t like this course because of the tight turns,” Riley said, “and the heat really made a difference.”

Week of Aug. 13- 19, 2018

Kristen Tibbetts
THE WRITE STUFF: Writing Center tutors — senior Meghana Goli, junior Sophie Knifton, senior Piper Wiest, senior Marianna Vanden Bout (pictured), junior Sam Buford and junior Kristen Tibbetts (not pictured) — decorated a sign-up board in the English hallway to encourage students to come in for free writing tutoring throughout upcoming the school year.

Week of Aug. 6- 12, 2018

Kristen Tibbetts
HIGH FIVE (IN A ROW): Members of the varsity volleyball team, both on the court and on the bench, celebrate winning a tough point in the third day of the 2018 AISD Jason Landers Memorial Tournament. The team powered through two tough three-set matches, the first against rival LBJ, to end the tournament on a five-match winning streak. “We just showed a lot of persistence and heart and didn’t give up,” senior co-captain Lindsey Wiley said of the hard-fought victories. “We came back from our errors and pushed through.”

Week of May 28- June 3, 2018

Gregory James
POMP AND CIRCUMSTANCE: Principal Mike Garrison gives a heart symbol to the graduates after they have received their diplomas and been certified as graduates. The commencement ceremony for the Class of 2018 was held May 31st in the Frank Erwin Center on the UT campus. Mr. Garrison opened the festivities with a speech about how the graduates’ experiences at McCallum have laid the foundation for a successful future. The graduation closed with the school song.
Kristen Tibbetts
FOUL PLAY: Sophomore Olivia Flowers helps Mr. Barber and Ms. Smith corral the roosters that arrived in the main hallway just as the fourth-period final ended May 30th. Rumor has it the apparent senior prank is likely to become a faculty gift to teachers with the capacity to adopt feathered friends.

Week of May 21-27, 2018

Bella Russo
ALL IN THE FAMILY: Today during fourth period, students and staff members packed into the library to commemorate volleyball player Charliee Arnold signing to attend and play volleyball at Wiley College in Marshall, Texas. Surrounded by her teammates, coaches and friends, Arnold explained that her main reason for choosing Wiley was its strong, supportive and welcoming community. “They were one of the main schools that believed in me and really wanted me to go to their school,” Arnold said. “It was really nice knowing that you have support coming from people who look just like you but people who don’t know you.”

 Week of May 14-20, 2018

Gregory James
A PRESIDENTIAL PRODUCTION: .”44 Plays for 44 Presidents” enjoyed the opened night of its Oval Office odyssey from Washington to Obama tonight in the Fine Arts Building Theater, starting with Freshman Griffin Butler as George Washington.

 Week of May 7-13, 2018

Kristen Tibbetts
POST-TEST DE-STRESS: Sophomore Cameryn Borman and her AP Spanish 4 classmates “de-stress” by emulating Mola art from the Kuna Indians of Panama. “Imitation is the best form of flattery,” said instructor Juana Gun, who added that she was going to decorate her room next year with the artwork her students created today. The AP Spanish Language and Culture test was on Tuesday. For some students in the class, the test lasted eight hours.

 Week of April 30- May 6, 2018

Joseph Cardenas
RAIN-VASION: This morning’s torrential rain caused a window to pop out in Ms. Shin’s classroom, a prolific leak at the entrance to the science hallway and multiple leaks in the journalism classroom that prompted newspaper students to shut down the file server and a whole row of computers and cover them with trash bags. The administration even temporarily lifted the recently instated lock policy so that students in portable classrooms could enter the building quickly to get out of the rain.

 Week of April 23-29, 2018

Celeste Montes De Oca
KNIGHT TO REMEMBER: Congrats to the 2018 Prom Queen and King: Sarah Kay Stephens and William Magnuson. After much preparation, hard work and anticipation, the “Knight to Remember” finally arrived on Saturday night, April 28. “The highlight [of prom] was being with my closest friends and enjoying our last school dance,” senior Georgia Whitworth said. Senior class co-sponsor Sarah Hathaway added, “I thought it went great. We had many helpers, and it made the setup and takedown pretty easy. I loved the theme and thought that we represented it well. Also, there was no drama, and everyone looked amazing.” Photo by Celeste Montes de Oca.

 Week of April 16-22, 2018

Joining the brigade of other students outside the front of McCallum, Molly Gardner silently falls into the crowd during the moment of silence as students march to the band hall parking lot. Photo by Madison Olsen.

 Week of April 9-15, 2018

A HAND MADE TALE (April 11): As part of its class project exploring children’s theatre, the Theatre 4 class worked outside today during third period, learning how to operate puppets in order to tell fairytales. “We got to unleash our inner child,” senior Evalyn McCusker said, “and it was a blast and a half.” Photo by Tomas Marrero.
16 GOING ON 15 (April 8): Sophomores Lucy Smith and Richard Hernandez dance at the McCallum High School Ballet Folklórico Quinceañera tonight. Of the 16 McCallum girls who participated in the event, some had never had a quinceañera, some were celebrating their quinceañera for a second time, and four were celebrating their real quinceañeras. The quinceañera started with a dance routine that the 16 girls and their partners practiced everyday at lunch for two weeks and was followed by lots of food, music and more dancing. McCallum Spanish teacher, Juana Gun, coordinated the event for the third straight year in order to give McCallum girls a chance to participate in the Latino cultural celebration. “This started when one of my Ballet Folklorico girls said, ‘Mrs. Gun, did you have a quinceañera?’ and I said, ‘No, my family couldn’t afford it,'” Gun said. “So, we brainstormed how we could have a McCallum High School quinceañera for people that wanted to be in it.” Photo and reporting by Steven Tibbetts.

Week of April 1-8, 2018

MAC JUST WANTS TO HAVE FUN (April 6): The final day of #academyweek was an eventful one, featuring Mr. Garrison, Abi Richter and Tryston Davis singing “Girls Just Want to have Fun” at the karaoke station in the fine arts courtyard. In addition to performances from Garrison and other students, the Fine Arts Academy week also showcased stage fighting lessons in the theater with Mr. Denning. In the main hallway, there was Virtual Reality Club demonstration. “[Planning this week] involved a lot of communication with the heads of the fine arts departments,” Dietz said. “[But most of the] events were successful.” Photo by Madison Olsen.
Wednesday (April 4) was another eventful day in the inaugural #AcademyWeek. The day’s offerings included musical theatre, dance, piano and knot tying. Thursday’s lunchtime offerings include First Edition in the ampitheater, a guitar trio in the solar classroom, a film demo in the English portable courtyard and tap dance in the Fine Arts Building Theater. Photos by Harper Cummings.


Week of March 25-31, 2018

FEVER PITCH (March 30): The varsity boys soccer team hit the playoff pitch at full speed Thursday night, building a 2-1 halftime lead, thanks to goals by Gerohan Irias and Ezekiel Sengiyunva. Unfortunately, the momentum shifted in the second half as Dripping Springs came back to win, 5-2. “The boys gave it all but it just wasn’t enough,” Coach Nick Martin said in a postgame Tweet. “I’m so proud of these boys and all they gave this year.” Congrats to the coach and his players on an outstanding season. Photo by Isaias Cruz.
A WET WIN (March 27): Thanks in large part to a 12-run second inning, the varsity softball team routed LBJ tonight 23-8 at Noack. Alicia Rivera hit an inside-the-park home run while going 2-for-3 with five runs batted in. Addie Race, shown here, was 3-for-3 with two RBI’s and two runs scored. The JV game was cancelled, but that did not stop them from supporting the varsity from the stands. Zoe Hocker pitched a complete game striking out seven Jags. Photo by Gracie Ross.
A SPINTERESTING PRACTICE (March 27): Cynthia Castro and Janet Perez were among the Ballet Folklorico members who gathered together on Tuesday in order to get down their newest songs. During these practices members prepare for multiple upcoming events of this year, including their Quincenera dance performance. “Cinco de Mayo is coming up so we have to learn a bunch of dances for different schools,” Perez said. “At first we learned Veracruz, then we learned Chiapas and now we’re learning the Bird Dance.” Photo by Finn Shehan.

Week of March 18-24, 2018

NEVER AGAIN (March 24): Marjory Stoneman Douglas High senior Jack Haimowitz shares an embrace after his emotional speech at today’s #marchforourlives at the Texas Capitol in downtown Austin. Haimowitz spoke of the awful Feb. 14 shooting on his campus. “What took place on Valentine’s Day not only stripped the students of Douglas of their innocence, but it brutally ripped 17 lives from their homes.” He also spoke of the resolve he and his classmates and have found since the shooting. “We are the change we never knew we needed, and we have found the strength that we never knew we were looking for. … Every day I see people not only wishing for change but refusing to accept anything else.” He also pleaded with the audience for unity. “If we ever wish to fully overcome the hatred and fear of a scale such as this, we must unite as Americans regardless of the societal, racial and physical constructs put in place to hinder our unification.” Photo by Madison Olsen.
IRRESISTABLE FORCE (March 22): Senior Ruby Dietz along with the rest of the pre-professional dance company performs “Force,” choreographed by guest artist Lisa Kobdish during tonight’s dress rehearsal. The McCallum Youth Dance Company will presenting its show, “The Butterfly Effect” Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. Tickets are $12 for adults and $7 for students. Photo by Annabel Winter.
UPWARD MOBILITY (March 22): Climbing Club sponsor Eric Wydeven powers through the middle section of an upside-down portion of the wall at the club’s weekly climbing meeting Thursday night at Austin Rock Gym. Photo by Ian Clennan
MONARCHS INDEED (March 19): Fresh off a first-place finish in the Texas Color Guard Circuit in the Scholastic Regional A class on Saturday March 10 at Cedar Park High School, the winter guard practices during fourth period today in the cafeteria. The guard will compete this Saturday at Hendrickson in the TCGC Area (West) Contest. If they place in the top three, the guard will advance to the state competition. Photo by Trent Huffaker.

Week of March 11-17, 2018

LIVE FROM NEW YORK (March 14): It was a full day in Upper Manhattan for the MacJournalism crew attending the Columbia Scholastic Press Association Spring Journalism Convention. The day ended at the Apollo Theater where the group took in the Amateur Night experience. In the morning, two Mac students attended sessions that observed today’s national youth walkout for gun control. After a day filled with educational sessions, including photography sessions by the distinguished Mark Murray, and a delicious lunch at Mill Korean, the group received a critique of the 2017 yearbook. Photo by Mira MacLaurin.
BATS THE WAY YOU DO IT (March 12): Starter Mason Bryant struck out 11 Maroons and drove in three runs, and Cole Ross went 3-for-4 with an RBI as the varsity Knights produced 10 hits in routing Austin High, 8-2, tonight at Northwest Park. Koehler Vandament, shown here, and Alex Baylor each scored a pair of runs, and Trinidad Dela Garza drove in two runs with a double. Reace Lane tripled in the game. Eric Worden got the final seven outs in relief. The Knights play Austin High again tomorrow at Burger to end the two-game series. Photo by Gregory James.

Week of March 4-10, 2018

TIED FOR FIRST (March 9): Thanks to goals by Ezekiel Sengiyunva and Gerohan Irias and a clean sheet from goalkeeper Eric LaWare, shown here, and the Knight defense, the varsity blanked Reagan 2-0 to pull even with Austin High atop the district standings. The Maroons have a game with Travis tomorrow and need a win or draw to break the first-place tie. The Knights, who have won eight games during a nine-game unbreaten streak, have clinched second place and a state playoff berth. Photos by Isaias Cruz.
UNBEATEN SEASON: (March 9): Tommaso Gaddi scored once and Reed Johnson twice, as the JV Knights earned a 3-3 draw against Reagan tonight at Nelson Field to complete an undefeated season. Anthony Bataille, shown here, made a terrific pass to set up one of Johnson’s two scores. Photos by Isaias Cruz.
PAINT IT PURPLE (March 8): To mark the occasion of International Women’s Day today, Anna Marceau brought acrylic paint to school for some celebratory face painting. Atticus Tait was among the folks who accepted her invitation. Students got all kind of symbols painted on their faces: hearts, feminism symbols and flowers. Photo by Madison Olsen.
VARSITY 2, LANIER 2 (March 6): The Knights celebrate Marcel Lopez-Reed’s goal, which helped them earn a draw Tuesday night at House Park. The result extended the varsity’s undefeated streak to eight games. Photo by Isaias Cruz.

Week of Feb. 25-March 3, 2018

JUST EnCASED (March 3): The winter guard place fourth out of 19 team’s in the Scholastic Regional A Division at the Texas Color Guard Circuit competition at Leander High School on Saturday. (1) Freshman Moses Copeland lifts junior and guard co-captain Claire Rudy so that she can show off her wings that she uses to start off the color guard’s show, “EnCASED.” Photo by Sydney Gomez.
SHE’S ALL EARS (Feb. 25): Sophomore Abby Green shows off her ears while waiting in line for rides at Disneyland. On Sunday, the final full day in California, students were given the choice to either go to the main Disneyland park or to California Adventure Park and enjoy food, music, and fun. Photo by Kristen Tibbetts

 Week of Feb. 18-Feb. 24, 2018

TURN IT INSIDE OUT (Feb. 22): The Knights of Steel, the Bowie Steel Band and the Austin Community Steel Band, played their annual Inside Out Steel Drums Concert Thursday night in the cafeteria. The Samba Knights, joined by the Austin Samba group, performed a halftime show of sorts and revved up the crowd. “It gave off a very different vibe than the rest of the concerts,” said sophomore Mira Maclaurin said, who appears in the fourth photo in this gallery. “It was a lot more focused on dancing and singing and celebration.” Photo by Lily McCormick.
KNIGHTS WIN PK THRILLER (Feb. 21): After a scoreless tie in regulation, tonight’s girls varsity game between Mac and LBJ came down to PK’s. Thanks to Molly Blankenship, Izzy Gillespie, Delaney Carter and Lily Morales, the Knights converted all four of their attempted penalty shots, and Lindsey Plotkin made two clutch saves including the gamewinning save on LBJ’s final PK attempt. Henna McRae was up next for the Knights but didn’t have to shoot because LBJ had no attempts left and Mac led, 4-3. Photos by Bella Russo.
FIVE IN A ROW (Feb. 20): Gerohan Irias joins Marcel Lopez-Reed, Jerry Howard and Adrian Martinez in celebrating one of his three goals as McCallum beat Austin High in the rematch between the two district foes. The win was the team’s fifth in a string of seven straight wins. Photo by Isaias Cruz.

 Week of Feb. 11-Feb. 17, 2018

BACK TO THE GRIND (Feb. 16): Performers at today’s Valentine’s Day-themed coffeehouse played songs and read poetry pertaining to matters of the heart and matters of the world. Sophomore Jalyn Wilbourn read a poem of hers about the recent school shooting in Florida. “I’d originally written a Valentine-y poem, and then we got the news of what happened on Valentine’s Day, and I got inspired to write it because this is the 18th one of 2018; it’s insane.” Reporting by Lily McCormick. Photo by Molly Gardner.
MOORE TO THINK ABOUT (Feb. 15): Juniors Ray-Mya Hardeman and Gavin Hurtado and sophomore Sam Werkenthin were among the students who found out today that a presentation from University of Texas history professor Dr. Leonard Moore is an interactive experience. With a presentation that often included direct conversation with members of the audience, Moore, the interim vice president for diversity and community engagement at UT, visited McCallum today as part of the school’s observance of Black History Month. Among the points that Dr. Moore drove home during fifth period today is the idea that perspectives toward and opportunities in higher education are shaped by a person’s background. The parents of minority students, he said, are much more likely than parents of white students to put economic concerns about higher education first when determining where to send their kids to school. He also made the point that the opportunity for higher education for black students is disproportionately tied to participation in sports: 4 percent of the general UT student population is black, he said, while the vast majority of football, men’s basketball and women’s basketball players are black. He also urged students who are considering serving in the military to attend college first and then enlist in the armed forces rather than enlisting first and then pursuing higher education. Photo by Karel Tinkler.
CENTER STAGE (Feb. 14): The McCallum chamber guitar ensemble and the two bands that won last semester’s Battle of the Bands performed at Stubbs BBQ Tuesday night. The ensemble played three lively pieces to raise money for the program’s field trip to California next Thursday. With extra time between performances, sophomore Riley Edwards played a solo piece to keep the crowd entertained before Status Loco and Frysk performed their sets. nough money to account for unexpected expenses during their trip. All guitar classes were invited to tour the campus and participate in a day-long festival at Vanguard University in Costa Mesa, Calif. “[I] really enjoy [these] guitar festivals and seeing people play,” senior Aaron Baldauf said. “[But] I’m [especially] looking forward to getting to bond with my friends.” Reporting by Kristen Tibbetts and Jasmine Barrera. Photo by Madison Olsen.

Week of Feb. 4-Feb. 10, 2018

YOU WIN SOME (Feb. 9): The subvarsity boys basketball teams earned a home split against visiting LBJ Friday night in both teams’ final home game of the year. The freshman team beat LBJ, 67-54, while the Jags prevailed over the JV Knights, 68-52, despite this smooth-as-silk floater by sophomore Jacob Broaders. The subvarsity teams close out their season Tuesday night with a visit to Austin High. Photo by Ian Clennan.
THREE OF A KIND (Feb. 7): Today, seniors Max Perez, Alexander Julian, and Judah Copeland signed their letters of intent to continue on playing football at the college level during lunch in the library. Perez signed to play at West Texas A&M, Julian signed to Navarro College, and Copeland signed to Harding University in Arkansas. McCallum head coach Charles Taylor bragged on the three college bound athletes, talking about how much work they had put in over the years and how much they had improved since their sophomore season. Copeland and Julian were named AP first team all state and Perez was named 25-5A offensive MVP. Photo by Janssen Transsier.
STILL IN THE HUNT (Feb. 6): Senior Marc Lopez drives between two Reagan defenders and scores an easy two points. The varsity Knights lost at home tonight to the Reagan Raiders, 73-65. The Knights entered the night tied with Austin High for the fourth and final playoff spot in District 25-5A. The Maroons lost at last-place Travis, 60-58. The Knights face LBJ at home Friday then finish district play with what promises to be a do-or-die showdown at Austin High Tuesday. Photo by Joseph Cardenas.

 Week of Jan. 28-Feb. 3, 2018

HEADED TO VICTORY (Feb. 3): After assisting Ezekiel Sengiyunva’s goal earlier in the game, Adrian Martinez scores the game winner as the boys varsity soccer team defeated Crockett this morning, 2-1. The team will try to win back-to-back games when it faces Lanier 10:45 a.m. next Saturday at Noack. Photo by Isaias Cruz.
HOLD ON TO YOUR SEATS OR YOUR DANCE PARTNER (Feb. 2): Sophomores Owen Scales and Mia Terminella take center stage during their ballet duet in “Somewhere” during the opening night of West Side Story on Thursday night. Photo by Madison Olsen.
JETS FOR LIFTOFF (Jan. 30): During Tuesday’s Act I dress rehearsal, members of the Jets open the show with a daring jump from a wall of chainlink fence. “It was scary at first,” Vandenberg said, “But it’s become routine.” Photo by Harper Cummings.
ON TARGET (Jan. 29): What Green Arrow is to the Justice League and Hawkeye is to the Avengers, freshman archer Mariana Torres DeLine is to McCallum High School. The freshman archer achieved a personal-best score of 266 points out of a possible 300 at Sunday’s National Archery in the Schools Program tournament at Lamar Middle School. As McCallum’s only archer at the competition, Torres DeLine went to the tournament hoping to score high enough to qualify for the state NASP tournament. She will find out in about a week if her score was high enough for her to qualify. She began archery while a fourth-grader at Highland Park Elementary, where her dad teaches physical education and coaches the elementary school’s archery team. Her dad was at the tournament yesterday coaching the Highland Park team and saw her best day ever as an archer. Photo by Kristen Tibbetts.

Week of Jan. 21-27, 2018

PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT (Jan. 27): Junior Erin Caylor intensely practices in the warm-up room before heading to the judging room at the annual UIL Solo and Ensemble contest on Saturday. Photo by Sophia Shampton.
MARCHERS RALLY FOR PRO-LIFE MOVEMENT: Handmaids stand in silent protest at the pro-life rally on Jan. 27. Stephanie Martin, the organizer for the Texas Handmaids, coordinated the protest. “When we protest, we do so silently to reflect the fact that our voices aren’t heard or valued in the seats of power,” she said. “We prefer to show them the reality of what they are aiming for and silently haunt them. The robes and our stoic faces are louder than a scream.” Photo by Emma Baumgardner.
Junior Camilo Auyero sits on the bench during halftime of McCallum’s 3-1 loss against Austin High on Jan 27 at House Park. The game against Austin High marked the Knight’s lowest point in the season as it put them at 0-5-2 for the year. Photo by Joseph Cardenas.

Week of Jan. 13-20, 2018

ONE YEAR AFTER protestors descended on Austin to reject their inaugurated president, they returned downtown on Jan. 20 to announce that they still found him unfit for office. “This is a country of immigrants,” marcher Todd Cary said. “The way [Trump] discriminates against immigrants and minorities is wrong, and I’m very much against it. We’re going to start 2018 by voting out some of his senators and congressmen.” While calling for Trump’s impeachment and campaigning for Democratic replacements of Trump allies, those who marched from City Hall to the Capitol today also observed a second Women’s March. “We wanted to honor the memory of the march last year, which was one of the most moving experiences of our lives,” said marchers Sarah and Tula Richardson. Finally, the march commemorated the anniversary of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision that established a federal right to abortion. Former Texas senator and Democratic gubernatoral candidate in 2014 Wendy Davis was among the featured speakers at the Capitol. In an exclusive interview with Macjournalism, Davis said, “No matter the resistance we meet in fighting for our reproductive rights and so many of the other things we care about, if we can just own the power of our own voice, we will be a part of a movement that is ultimately going to overwhelm that opposition and is going to realize change.” We will have more of our interview with Davis plus a second exclusive interview with state representative Donna Howard, D-Austin, the keynote speaker at the afternoon rally. Photo by Madison Olsen.
THE LOR OF THE RUNWAY (Jan. 13): At McCallum’s annual benefit fashion show on Saturday night, 12 student lines were showcased by 49 student models. The collections followed the theme of Icons Only: each designer chose an icon that inspired their work. In this image, model sophomore Louis Lor models junior Nola Hammer’s line, which was inspired by Bubbles, the Power Puff Girl. Third place went to senior Genevieve Temple, whose icon was actress and model Jane Burkin. Second went to senior Bethany Raup, who was inspired by rapper Kwon Jiyong. Freshman Veronica Crist took first place and chose actress Zendaya as her icon. Proceeds from the show benefitted the McCallum visual arts department and Out Youth, a local support organization for LGBTQIA+ youth. Photo by Bella Russo.

 Week of Jan. 7-12, 2018

REPELLING THE RAIDERS (Jan. 12): Thanks to suffocating defense, including this double team by seniors Cordeja Hopes and Keyrra Wright, the host girls varsity defeated the Reagan Raiders tonight in 25-5A district play. Photo by Ian Clennan.

Week of Jan. 2-5, 2018

VARSITY SOCCER FALLS IN OPENER (Jan. 5): Repossessing the ball, junior Camilo Auyero slips in front an Eastside opponent after a throw in by Eastside. The Panthers defeated the Knights in their season opener tonight at House Park. Photo by Ian Clennan.
TROY STORY (Jan. 5): The boys basketball teams were swept at Anderson tonight in non-district games. In the JV’s 48-28 loss, Alvino Carbajal led all Mac scorers with seven points. Photo by Madison Olsen.

Week of Nov. 26-Dec. 2, 2017

HAIL YES! In the 5A D2 Region IV semifinal in San Antonio’s Alamodome on Dec. 2, McCallum took a 14-8 lead it never surrendered after Mason Bryant pulled in this 47-yard, half-ending Hail Mary pass from Max Perez despite triple coverage. Earlier in the quarter, Bryant, also the team’s punter, fielded a bad snap and dashed for a first down to extend the drive that led to this play and proved to be the decisive momentum changer for the game. After halftime, the 2017 Knights cruised to a 33-8 win to improve to 13-0 for the season while also avenging a 51-year-old playoff loss to the same school that ended the 1966 Knights perfect season at 11-1. Many of those Knights were in attendance to see their old score settled. Photo by Ian Clennan.

October 2015

Senior David Ruwwe takes a water balloon to the back during the PALS annual Pink Week fundraiser "Peg-a-PAL." The PALS raised over $1,200 for Breast Cancer research. Photo by Rylie Jones.
Senior David Ruwwe takes a water balloon to the back during the PALS annual Pink Week fundraiser “Peg-a-PAL.” The PALS raised over $1,200 for Breast Cancer research. Photo by Rylie Jones.

April 2015

Junior Elizabetta Diorio shoots a short film for her Audio Video Production class. Dioro recently advanced to state UIL for her films "Lucy and Grasshopper" and "Plastic Bag." Photo by Mary Stites.
Junior Elizabetta Diorio shoots a short film for her Audio Video Production class. Dioro recently advanced to state UIL for her films “Lucy and Grasshopper” and “Plastic Bag.” Photo by Mary Stites.

April 24

April 19th
Ultimate frisbee players jump to make a catch April 19th. Photo by Mary Stites.

April 19

Dancers align in the spring show April 11. Photo by Aiden Foster.

April 11


Listeners gather in the courtyard where student bands are playing at the Spring into Music band fundraiser. Photo by Aiden Foster.
Listeners gather in the courtyard where student bands are playing at the Spring into Music band fundraiser. Photo by Aiden Foster.

April 3

March 2015

Junior Max Corney and senior Peter Richard act as technicians in a play within a play. The show, "Cut," was part of the student-directed shows March 27. Photo by Maya Coplin.
Junior Max Corney and senior Peter Richard act as technicians in a play within a play. The show, “Cut,” was part of the student-directed shows March 27. Photo by Maya Coplin.

March 27

Sophomore Emerald Ferrel recites her poem "varos" at Excalibur's Coffeehouse Thursday. Photo by Aiden Foster.
Sophomore Emerald Ferrel recites her poem “varos” at Excalibur’s Coffeehouse March 26. Photo by Aiden Foster.

March 26

Sophomore Ellie Zambarano sings in the rain as Molly Jensen in the musical "Ghost." The show ran the last two weekends on the MAC stage. Photo by Aiden Foster.
Sophomore Ellie Zambarano sings in the rain as Molly Jensen in the musical “Ghost.” The show ran the last two weekends on the MAC stage. Photo by Aiden Foster.

March 6

Campus police officer Anthony Andrews walks Rocco the drug dog down the hallway to search the lockers. Read more about Rocco in the upcoming issue of The Shield March 13.
Campus police officer Anthony Andrews walks Rocco the drug dog down the hallway to search the lockers. Read more about Rocco in the upcoming issue of The Shield March 13.

March 3



PALs distribute valentines at their Valentine’s Day party in the cafeteria last Friday. Photo by Natalie Murphy.

Feb. 23

Freshmen Molly Blakenship and Isabelle Gillespie scuffle with two LBJ players in the recent girls soccer game. The Knights won 3-1 in this district rivalry game. Photo by Nick Robertson.

Feb. 16

POW teens for jeans
Senior Janie Contreras shows some of the jeans that have been donated as part of Interact Club’s Teens for Jeans clothing drive. The club is collecting jeans through the end of the week and then bringing them to the local Aeropostle to donate to teenagers in need in the area. The goal of the club is to promote community service and build leaders, Contreras said. Photo by Aiden Foster.

Feb. 9

Seniors Colin Youngblood (center), Jake Janssen (left) and Miguel Minick (right) sing together during the talent portion of the Mr. McCallum show last Friday. Youngblood was named "Mr. McSassy." Photo by Aiden Foster.
Seniors Colin Youngblood (center), Jake Janssen (left) and Miguel Minick (right) sing together during the talent portion of the Mr. McCallum show last Friday. Youngblood was named “Mr. McSassy.” Photo by Aiden Foster.

Feb. 1



Junior Lily Dickinson runs to block a pass at Burger Stadium. The varsity girls soccer team lost against Anderson 3-1 Tuesday. Photo by Aiden Foster.

Jan. 21

Senior Thomas Magnuson plays guitar with his band, The Mr. Clark Experience, at Stubb's music venue and BBQ Wednesday.
Senior Thomas Magnuson plays guitar with his band, The Mr. Clark Experience, at Stubb’s music venue and BBQ Wednesday. Photo by Aiden Foster.

Jan. 14

Senior Daniel Reyes constructs a balsa wood tower to test on a shaker table that simulates an earthquake. The project is part of a 6-week-long “Designing with Data” challenge in Engineering class. Photo by Mary Stites.

Jan. 8



Senior Justice Phillips crams for his last final of the semester while wearing a Santa Claus sweater, which he said helps him keep at it and remember that Christmas break is right around the corner.

Dec. 30

Junior Lily Dickinson and senior Carlos Arguello help feed chickens at Community First!, an affordable housing project by Mobile Loaves and Fishes. Dickinson and Arguello were volunteering Saturday with Key Club, which explores community service opportunities for students around Austin. Photo by Maggie Mueller.

Dec. 22

Security Officer Georgia Peña shows off her sweater for the annual tacky holiday sweater contest. She won second place. Photo by Haley Hegefeld.
Security Officer Georgia Peña shows off her sweater for the annual tacky holiday sweater contest. She won second place. Photo by Haley Hegefeld.

Dec. 15

The basketball team huddles at its game against Eastside Memorial Tuesday night. The team won 97-46. Photo by Nick Robertson.
The basketball team huddles at its game against Eastside Memorial Tuesday night. The team won 97-46. Photo by Nick Robertson.

Dec. 12

Senior Bomani Barton sings at the Battle of the Bands. The show was a competition between student bands as a fundraiser for the classical guitar program. Photo by Aiden Foster.
Senior Bomani Barton sings at the Battle of the Bands. The show was a competition between student bands as a fundraiser for the classical guitar program. Photo by Aiden Foster.

Dec. 5


steel dessert concert
Sophomore Adina Morquecho and seniors Joe Cruz and Miguel Minick perform at the annual Knights of Steel dessert concert in the cafeteria Monday night. They are playing tenor pans in the advanced steel band. Photo by Aiden Foster.

Nov. 25

An Eastern Screech Owl hides from an aggressive mockingbird in a Pokeweed bush. The owl was spotted in the courtyard during Garden Club Wednesday morning. Photo by Seren Villwock.
An Eastern Screech Owl hides from an aggressive mockingbird in a Pokeweed bush. The owl was spotted in the courtyard during Garden Club Wednesday morning. Photo by Seren Villwock.

Nov. 19

Senior Meghan Mitchell signs her National Letter of Intent to Gannon University in Erie, Pennsylvania. She was the recipient of a scholarship for acrobatics and tumbling. Senior Jessie Woolley-Macmath also signed Wednesday to Texas Christian University in Fort Worth for distance swimming. Photo by Mary Stites.

Nov. 13

Teacher Thomas Watterson shares CDs with students in his English IV class, including seniors Zoe Watts, Abbey Perez and Alix McCanlies. Math teacher Richard Cowles found the stack of mixed CDs at a garage sale for $5 and gave them to Watterson. Photo by Seren Villwock.

Nov. 6


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