Monthly Archives: April 2017

RHS Travel Club Visits England, Ireland and Scotland

photos courtesy of Kristen Walsh

Jasmin Morse, Veritas Web Editor

4-26-17

Over this April Vacation, alongside the Guatemala Trip, other RHS students and staff traveled to England, Ireland and Scotland.

The trip consisted of 46 students chaperoned by six RHS faculty members. According to the leader of the RHS Travel Club, Kristen Walsh, everything went well. She said, “[The kids] had good attitudes, were open minded.” She also reflected upon the awesome tour guides they had that were funny, yet extremely informative about places and history that might be unfamiliar to most students.

Ms. Walsh said the crowd favorite was probably Edinburgh in Scotland. She explained that the city was very different from the ones we are used to here. In Scotland, they visited Edinburgh Castle.

Another beloved spot was London, England where they spent three days. One of the favorite spots on the trip was the London Eye, a giant Ferris wheel on the South Bank of the River Thames in London, that they visited at night.  She said it gave them  a “cool view.”

They also spent four days in Ireland: two days in Northern Ireland, as well as two in Dublin. In Northern Ireland they spent some time at Giant’s Causeway, a formation of rocks the students had the opportunity to climb.Ms. Walsh explained she thoroughly enjoyed the tour guides who discussed subjects like the problems and conflicts that have taken place in the country, and made them funny and enjoyable to learn about.

It was an enjoyable trip that also gave cultural and historical lessons to the Rockland High School students.

Track teams ready to compete

Track coaches: from left: Patrick Finn, Randal Grimmett, Robert Murphy and Mark Killinger. photo by Erin Kearns

Erin Kearns, Veritas Staff

The track teams this year are hoping to have a successful season, especially with the large turn-out they had.

Last year both the boys and girls teams finished the season with three wins and five losses.

The coaches this year are Robert Murphy, Randal Grimmett, Mark Killinger, and Patrick Finn.

“I’m really excited about this year’s team. We have almost fifty girls signed up so far, which is a lot more than we’ve ever had before. We also have a good number of returning athletes, so I expect that we will be very competitive in the South Shore League,” says Mr. Grimmett.

Mr. Murphy has similar expectations for this year. “I always have high expectations for our Rockland teams. This year especially, we had over forty students sign up for boys’ track, with a large number being freshmen, and many upperclassmen returning from last year’s team. This is very encouraging.”

Erika Ochenduszko, a returning track runner and one of the team’s top scorers explained, “I think it’s great that there were ninety people that showed up to the track meeting. It’s better to have more numbers because it gives us a better chance of winning the meets.”

She continued, “What I’m worried about is how long the meets are going to have to be because of how many people are doing it.”

With the large turn-out, the coaches’ task in finding the right events for everyone could be a little more difficult.

Mr. Grimmett explained that when judging potential the most important thing he looks for is a good work ethic, explaining, “I’d have to say that the most important characteristic we look for is a willingness to work hard and continually strive to get better.”

He continued, “We all have our individual aptitudes, but what we do with the natural talent we possess depends upon our willingness to work hard. For the athletes who are new to track, I try not to judge their potential and just wait and see how they progress as athletes. One of the best things about coaching track is seeing the athletes get better.”

Mr. Murphy has similar thoughts about an athlete’s potential saying, “Potential to me is based on dedication, desire and hard work.” he explained, “The more effort an athlete exhibits, the greater the potential he or she has to succeed.”

Lily Matson, one of the team’s top scorers and a returning runner says, “Track is a mental sport. You’re constantly fighting the part of yourself that wants to stop, and the biggest challenge is pushing through that, even though it hurts. It takes a lot of mental toughness and discipline, and it’s awesome to see the team push through the tough days together.”

To anyone unsure about coming out for track Mr. Murphy would encourage them to join.  Mr. Grimmett adds, “Track is a lot of fun, and there are so many events that almost anyone can find an event that they like.”

RHS Goes to Guatemala

photos courtesy of Amanda Lanigan, Melissa Shaughnessy and Gregory Connors. Click on one to see the gallery.

Jasmin Morse, Veritas Web Editor

4- 24-17

Over April Vacation, a group of fifteen RHS students and faculty went on a service trip to Panajachel, Guatemala. 12 students along with their three chaperones: Melissa Shaughnessy, Amanda Lanigan, and Gregory Connors embarked on the trip Saturday, April 15 and returned Saturday, April 22.

On this trip, the students and staff worked along side a program called “Worthy Village” to teach impoverished families how to filter water. The program was started by 2011 RHS alumni, Julia Rayberg. Their mission is to help the people of Panajachel who rely on one lake where they wash their dishes, clothes, and even bathe making it contaminated and unsafe to drink.

In Guatemala, the students gave villagers advice and methods on good hygiene as well as supplies. They also showed the villagers how to use the water filters, provided by Worthy Village.

Rayberg wrote to the Rockland group on Facebook: “I can not express how grateful the Worthy Village team is for all your hard work here in Guatemala. I am so honored, so proud and so grateful to know you’re Rockland kids. There’s just something about Rockland.”

Girls Lacrosse Team Focuses on Improving Every Day

Kaylee Patten (left) and Emily Beatrice are co-captains of the lacrosse team. courtesy photo/yearbook

Julian Tarpey, Veritas Staff

Lauren Rizzotti is in her fourth year as the coach of the girls’ lacrosse team at Rockland High School. That is exactly how long there has been a girls’ lacrosse team at RHS.

`In four years they have come a long way. The first year they were a club team, and the squad has only been a varsity team for two years.

Ms. Rizzotti, who also teaches math at RHS, says, “It has been amazing seeing these girls grow over the years. I just find it really cool to see the girls improve over the years and really compete.”

Two of those girls are senior captains, Emily Beatrice and Kaylee Patten. Ms. Rizzotti says she is happy to have them leading the team. “They are two of the strongest players on the team, but also the most dedicated.”

In addition to the two senior captains, Ms. Rizzotti says, “There are several returning players from last year that I am counting on to hold this team together because we have several fairly new players.”

Despite their youth and lack of experience, the coach enjoys her team and says that they enjoy playing.

From left: Emily Beatrice, Jenna Burns and Natalie Draicchio take a break from indoor practice. Veritas photo

“The strength of the team is how much they all truly enjoy playing. They aren’t playing because they have to, or they are getting in shape for another sport, they are playing because they find it fun,” says Coach Rizzotti.

Their inexperience does show, however, and the hardest part is playing against teams that have established programs from the youth leagues up to the high school level.

“We are playing against teams who have been playing for years, and they play during their off-seasons. My players are brand new a few years ago, and any new players coming in are learning from scratch as well. It makes it very hard to keep up with the other teams,” says Ms. Rizzotti.

The girls lacrosse team work on fundamentals in the gym in early season practices. Veritas photo

But the girls have goals and one of them is to improve every day.

“Every practice we focus on improving one more thing and to continue to work on the basics such as catching and passing in order to really compete,” explained the coach.

And with that goal comes the most important one for the team.

“The number one goal this season is to leave everything on the field each game,” says the coach, who explained how they lost several games last year by only a few points.

“Those are the hardest to walk away from, so this year we are looking to get those games back.”

The girls opened the season on Monday, April 3 at Southeastern Regional High School and came away with a 17-4 victory.

Their next game will be on Monday, April 24 against Silver Lake at home.  They will then be at Abington in the first game of a doubleheader with the boys’ team.  The girls will be going on at 5:00 and the boys will follow at 6:30.

Arts Festival April 12, 2017

The Rockland Public Schools held its annual Arts Festival. Among the highlights and exhibits was the release of the latest issue of Images, Rockland High School’s Art and Literary Magazine.   Photos by Veritas photographer Maddie Gear

Click on one photo to see the gallery.

Artwork from all the grades in the Rockland Public Schools was featured.

The RHS art students’ work was varied and interesting.

The RHS Band and Chorus also performed.

Click on any photo to see the slideshow.

Language Students Visit Quebec

Standing in front of a mural in Quebec City is the group from Rockland. Left to right: Mr. Finn, Elizabeth Kelley, Tatianna Hill, Emily Bugbee, Rachel Leleme, Jessica Dunphy, Nick Labolitta, Sarah Milks, Katie Houde, Leo Field and Ms. Lanigan. Back l to r: Kerin Dalton, Lara Glennon, Olivia Milso, Sammi Nachtman, Catherine Doyle, Hannah Wyllie, Jacob Nunn, Jacob Johnson, Kyle Lenihan, and Matt Griffin. photo courtesy Mr. Finn

Sammi Nachtman, Veritas Staff

A group of 20 students and two teachers left on a three day trip to Quebec, Canada on March 31. Mr. Finn, a French and Spanish teacher, organized the trip to introduce his French students to the French-Canadian culture.  He even had some of his Spanish students join the trip.  Ms. Lanigan, a history teacher, chaperoned as well. The group arrived home on April 2 at around 9:30 p.m.

When they arrived in the city, the group was brought on a two hour tour of the city and introduced to many of Quebec’s beautiful buildings: the Grande Alee, the Latin Quarter, le petit Seminaire de Quebec, Norte Dame de Quebec Cathedral, and the Terrasse Defferin. At the end of the tour they had a Parisian- style dinner where they had two options for food to choose from, and chocolate cake for a dessert. Later on that night they took a group picture in front of the Terrasse Defferin and headed home to sleep and get ready for the next day.

On day two the kids were taken to breakfast in the Quartier Petit Champlain. They had fruit, a freshly made croissant, a chocolate pastry, and a bowl of hot chocolate. They were then taken to a nineteenth century fortification where they learned about how the soldiers lived in there and reanacted some things.

The group then went to a very large mall where they had an hour to get lunch, shop a little, and use the indoor amusement park. For dinner that night they went to a place called the Sugar Shack. Outdoors there were piles of snow, snow tubes, sleds, and snow shoes for everyone to use and have fun with. On the inside there were rows of tables and many people excited to eat. Two men played music and everyone sang along and danced.

The trip was a success. The group learned  about the culture of a French- Canadian city  and met new people along the way.

Photos below courtesy of Mr. Finn.

Cheerleaders Honored at Fenway Park

The cheerleaders capped off a spectacular year on April 11 at Fenway Park.  photo courtesy of Jeanine Reardon

The 2016-2017 Rockland High School cheerleaders capped off a spectacular year with a special night at Fenway Park on April 11. As part of Champions Night, the girls were honored before the Red Sox game with Baltimore.

Peter Tolan is RHVC’s #1 fan & supporter. He wrote a letter to the Red Sox so that the team would be included among the other honorees at the Champions Night game on April 11. photo courtesy of Kim Reardon

Rockland High School custodian Peter Tolan, who is also an usher at Fenway, paved the way for the girls to be recognized.

The cheerleaders won the Division 4 State championship this past winter as well as the 2017 New England Championship. Along the way they also won the South Shore League title, the Southeast regionals and numerous invitational tournaments.

The girls got a special ride in a limo to Fenway and were also treated to dinner at the Bullpen Kitchen. Over 80 family and friends attended the game and sat in the bleachers. The Sox won the game 8-1, sending everyone home happy.

Head coach Jeanine Reardon expressed thank you’s to her thirteen cheerleaders and to all the team’s supporters, including asst. coaches Kim Reardon and Krystin Killion. Coach Reardon said, “I will never forget how fabulous this season was. I am the luckiest coach to have some of the best athletes ever.”

Reardon has coached the team for 10 years. In that time the cheerleaders have won seven state titles and nine league championships.

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