Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Fall line-up of shows that will entertain

   Many very entertaining shows are coming to television this fall.  Some are spin-offs from popular shows while others show relatable family dynamics or have movie-star casts.  “Pretty Little Liars” is a very well-known suspenseful series. If you love this mystery drama, you will also love its spin-off, “Ravenswood.”  This new show is about five strangers whose lives are changed because of a deadly curse that has plagued their town for generations.  Tyler Blackburn, who plays Caleb in “Pretty Little Liars” is one of the main actors in “Ravenswood.”  The show introduces new characters such as Miranda, played by Nicole Anderson, and Luke, played by Brett Dier.  This is classified as a teen drama, mystery, and thriller.  “Ravenswood,” premieres October 22 at 9:00 pm on ABC Family.

   If you enjoy relatable comedies, then you will love the new show “The Goldbergs” on ABC.  This series is about a typical family in the 80’s, just with a lot more screaming.  The hot-tempered dad, Murray, is played by Jeff Garlin from “Curb your Enthusiasm.”  The mom, Beverly, smothers the geeky 11-year old son and the typical, emotional, 17-year old daughter, Erica.  The show introduces previously little-known actors.  It is directed by Seth Gordon, who also directed “Identity Thief” and “Horrible Bosses.”  “The Goldbergs” premieres September 24 at 9:00 pm.
   On CBS, a brand new comedy series called “The Crazy Ones” will make you laugh.  Simon is the head of a powerful agency with the biggest clients and brands in the world, but more important to him is that his daughter is by his side.  Robin Williams plays Simon, the dad and head of the agency.  Robin Williams is known for comedies such as “Jumanji” and “Mrs. Doubtfire.”  Sarah Michelle Gellar plays Simon’s daughter, Sydney.  Sarah Michelle Gellar was Buffy in “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”.  With many famous actors and a funny plotline, “The Crazy Ones” is expected to be a powerful new TV series.  It premieres September 26 at 9:00 pm.

   There are many new and entertaining shows premiering this fall.  Many that will make you laugh and put you on the edge of your seat.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Girls of fall cheering us on

By:  Baylee VanKirk, Audra Thomas, Kelsey Shamblin, and Tyler Barickman
   Fall Friday nights are filled with excitement in Jackson County.  The Ripley Memorial Stadium fills up with fans anxious to watch football.  The players are important, but the crowd would not be as nearly excited without those cheerleaders yelling their hearts out to get the crowd amped up.
   Coach Kelli Fisher and her cheerleaders work hard all summer to perfect all of the cheers that you hear at the games.  With 18 girls coming out this year for the squad, the youth look for leadership. They are led by five seniors: Captain Kelsey Casto, Co-Captains Ali King, Regan Parsons, then Reese Gandee, and Daryn King.
  “The squad looks good this year.  We have new and old faces around to keep it balanced,” stated Casto.
   Having new girls this year means they will have harder stunting and more tumbling than last year. This adds excitement to what you will see on the sidelines.
   “I like it a lot.  We get more done than in middle school.  There are better cheers” says freshman Haley Carson.
   Cheering is not the only thing these girls do on Fridays.  Six members of the team are also in the band, and one runs cross country. It takes time and dedication to do both of these activities. Cheerleaders are looked up to by the little girls who attend the games, and our cheerleaders show great spirit and pride!

   Watch for these girls on Friday nights, either home or away, to keep the fans into the game.  Also they compete in November for conference and regionals. They will be with you all season to keep you entertained during the game.

Monday, October 7, 2013

New teacher Summers shines for social studies

   There is a new face among the social studies and world history teachers of Ripley High:  Sarah Summers, who is honored to start her first year of teaching at our school.

   “I’m excited to work here!” Summers said.

   Summers graduated first from Grafton High School, then West Virginia University.  She has always liked history, and decided to pursue a career that would let her show other students its values.

   She explained, “I like learning about places and people.”

   After graduating with a teaching degree, Summers came to Ripley, eager to teach what she had studied, and was given a warm welcome by the students and staff of the school.

  “I came to Ripley because it’s a town filled with nice people,” Summers says.  “It has a friendly, welcoming, small-town feel.”

   She is now enjoying her new job.  She plans her lessons a week in advance and tries to make history fun for her students, rather than the usual bookwork.  In her free time, she enjoys activities such as travelling, biking, and scuba diving.

  Summers and her students are confident that this will be a great school year.

New teacher Moore brings experience to job

   Students in shop or drafting have been learning the name Dave Moore, the new instructor in those classes.  Others will already know him from his time in the Board Office.  Either way, Mr. Moore is certainly not unlearned in his field.

   “I have been teaching for 21 years, and I was in administration for six,” Moore says.

   Moore was an equally dedicated student, graduating first from North Marion High School, then Fairmont State University and Marshall University.  His favorite subject was always drafting.

   “I like to design and build homes, and I like architecture and hands-on work,” he explains.

   After graduating, Moore began his teaching career.  He was teaching in Virginia when he received a request to bring his expertise to Ripley High.

   He now spends the school days setting up lessons and demonstrations for his classes.  Out of school, he enjoys woodworking, fishing, and hunting.  He is married and has two kids.

   Fun fact:  one of his own children is Logan Moore, who graduated last year and was on the newspaper staff.

   Moore is looking forward to the rest of this year, in the school and community alike.

   “I like that it’s a small town where everyone seems to know each other,” he says.  “It’s just a great place to live.”

Friday, October 4, 2013

Effort to reduce concussions in football

By: Jacob Bailes

   Football officials at both the high school and professional levels are trying to reduce the possibility of injury or death from concussions by helmet-to-helmet contact. Reducing concussions in sports has become a top priority because people who receive a concussion are twice or three times as likely to suffer from another one.
   A 16-year-old died in New York over the weekend of September 13 due to a helmet-to-helmet collision during a high school football game. Damon Janes, a junior running and defensive back at Brocton-Westfield High School, was sent to the hospital after originally walking to the sidelines under his own power. He was in critical condition for three days before passing away from his injuries on September 16. According to the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury Research at the University of North Carolina, this is the second death like this in less than a month.
   Football is the most common sport to suffer a concussion, and it is estimated that 47% of athletes do not report feeling any symptoms after a concussion. Fewer than 10% result in blacking out which is why many concussions go unnoticed.
   In response to this, Impakt Protective has created a device called the Shockbox. It is a helmet g-force sensor that measures the level of intensity from a hit that an athlete has suffered and whether medical assessment is needed. If an athlete is hit too hard, an alert is sent to a mobile device via Bluetooth. It can support up to 128 Shockboxes with a single phone, allowing coaches to monitor the number of severe hits the team has suffered. While this technology can be really helpful in the effort to reduce injuries, many players won’t want to use it for the fear that coaches will take them out if they’ve been hit too hard.
   Physical trainer Steve Lough uses the ImPACT evaluation system which is a computer-based cognitive test that analyzes athletes in the pre-season and then again if they may have suffered a head injury to determining safe return-to-play decisions. It is suggested that athletes be tested once every two years but Lough does it once every year to be safe.
   “It’s important that you have someone who is able to interpret the tests so that you can understand them. The tests are worth it because you’re able to help and protect the athletes,” he says.
   It is estimated that high school athletes suffer anywhere from 136,000 and 300,000 concussions every year. It is important to spot a concussion quickly because these traumatic incidents can lead to cognitive impairments and many other long term consequences.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Thompson comes back to alma master as teacher

   Rikki Thompson is a new teacher at Ripley High School this year. She graduated here and recently came back as a long term substitute science teacher.
   Thompson has always appreciated teachers who are willing to help others. Here in a small town, that is possible she says.
   This year is her first experience of teaching. She is usually reading textbook and making power point slides for her class.
   Thompson’s favorite teacher was Barb Heckert, her biology & chemistry teacher.
   “She was good teacher and I liked her class” Thompson says.
   Thompson has a husband but no kids. Her hobbies are attending Marshall football games and basketball games.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Lady Vikings Soccer Focuses on Teamwork

   The Lady Vikings soccer team is filled with excitement both on and off the field. Though they lost their game August 23 against Woodrow Wilson, they were successful the following day with a win against Poca.
   Senior Tori Quick says the main goal is “To have a successful team, and have fun.”
   The senior players include Quick, Kaitlin Chinn, Molli Cunningham, Erica Gibson, and Elizabeth Knox. The star players perform under coaches Missy Ross and Delaire Carter. Gibson is confident that the girls will go on to win more games and have a better season that the previous years.
   “We practice a lot, come together as a team, and work hard. Before every game, the team forms a circle to say the Lord’s prayer," Gibson continued to say that their two wins against Poca have been due to team work and perseverance from every member on the team.
   The loss against Woodrow Wilson was a shock for the girls, but Gibson thinks they will be able to bounce back with the same vigor that they used to beat Poca.
   Quick is sure that the season will be one to remember. “So far we have been doing really well. Our team communicates and that helps us play better.”
   Junior Callan Banks says, “I’m looking forward to the progress we’re hoping to make this year and the memories we’ll make.”
   Banks along with many other players all agree that their most difficult game opponent this year has been George Washington High school. The girls next game of the season will be against Riverside high, at Riverside. With all of the positivity surrounding the lady Vikings, it is clear that this season will be special for the senior players and everyone else on the team.

Mike Reed inducted into football hall of fame

By: Lexi Martin and Samantha Miller
   Coach Mike Reed is being honored as a coach by being inducted in the Ripley High School Football Hall of Fame after doing the job for 24 years.
   “It’s a nice gesture and an honor that [proves] you put an impact on athletes’ lives… that they can honor you like that,” Reed reflected on his induction.
   Ripley has a hall of fame for baseball and football. The Football Hall of Fame began in 2003 with an average of five to six people inducted each year. The first inductees were James Abshire, Bill Casto, Howard Chancey, Paul Lanham, and Marcus McPhail. The latest inductees were in 2011: Brian Hussell, Dale Hartley, Ernie Moore, Red Hill, and Steve McMillion.
   Game announcer Mike Reuben serves on the athletic boosters committee that chooses who is inducted. There are usually five people inducted, one for each home game, but this year is different. Celebrating 100 years of Ripley High, the Hall of Fame committee decided to induct six former athletes.
   Reed also has a history of playing sports. He played baseball, football, and ran track for Dunbar High School. After high school, he then went to Glenville State College and played sports there as well.
   “Sports got me through college. My coaches cared enough to watch over me,” Reed commented.
   Reed was a junior high head coach for four years, then coached Ripley High School varsity football with Coach Frank Marino for 20 years. He has been teaching for 36 years and is retiring at the end of the school year.

   Reed was inducted Friday, September 20 during the Vikings’ game against Spring Valley. It is clearly a well-deserved honor.

Apple announces new iPhones and iOS 7

By: Jacob Bailes

   Apple announced two new versions of the iPhone set to be released in the U.S. September 20, including the 5s and the 5c. The new operating system, iOS 7, announced in June, is set to be released September 18.
   The new iPhone 5s will include a 64-bit A7 processor which is twice as fast as the previous iPhone 5. It will also include a fingerprint scanner that will tighten security while reducing frustration caused by traditional passcode entry. While the iPhone 5s will have the same screen size, resolution, and 8-megapixel camera as its predecessor, it will now include a larger sensor, improved flash, and a 1080p front-facing camera along with many other improvements such as better battery life. Apple also announced that the 5s will come in three luxurious colors: grey, gold, and silver. As always, it will come in 16, 32, and 64GB costing $199, $299, and $399, respectively.
   Apple’s new, cheaper version of the iPhone is made to target a more budget-friendly audience than the more expensive iPhones before it. The iPhone 5c will come in five pastel colors: white, green, blue, pink, and yellow. It is designed with a polycarbonate back with a steel frame underneath. Like the 5s, the 5c will also have an improved front-facing camera and longer battery life. The 5c will come in 16GB for $99 or 32GB for $199.
   The new operating software iOS 7 will completely change the look of Apple devices, a first since the phone was born in 2007. As far as the design goes, the icons and apps have a flat, pastel look and when you move the device, there’s a 3D effect that makes your wallpaper appear to be distanced behind the icons. A new control center will allow you to access your most used settings with ease from any screen, such as the Wi-Fi meter, brightness, airplane mode, and music controls.
   Another big change is the introduction of AirDrop, which allows you to share files with those around you who are also operating on iOS 7 or make you invisible to nearby iOS 7 users.
   A revamped camera and photo app also includes the ability to frame your shot, such as a panorama or square Instagram-like format. With iOS 7, Apple organizes photos as different times and sorts them by location as well.
   Lastly, one big change with iOS 7 is the introduction of iTunes Radio that works similar to that of Pandora or Spotify. It will be free to use and ad-free for iTunes Match users. Many other differences include changes to Siri, FaceTime audio, automatic updates, multitasking, and many others.

   Bob DeFrank’s fourth period served as a sample of the student body in admitting three-fourths own an iPhone already, however, only a fraction of those said they were upgrading to a new iPhone because they said the cost just wasn’t worth it.

"How I Met Your Mother" starts final season

   The audience of “How I Met Your Mother” should be ecstatic now that the final season has kicked off with a two episode premiere September 23 on CBS.

   In the previous season, Barney and Robin got engaged, Robin freaked out over her wedding, Lily and Marshall adjusted to having baby Marvin, Lily and Marshall also were confronted on the Rome vs. Judge Issue in the finale, but most importantly we got to see the Mother!  If you missed her, she is the bass player for Robin and Barney’s wedding (actress Cristin Milioti will be playing her).

   In the premier, we see how Lily met the mom on a train.  The mother offered her a cookie and they joke around a bit.  Marshall is stuck in the airport after taking the judgeship and is still trying to figure out how to tell Lily.  Ted is with Lily and they argue which causes Lily to leave and meet the Mother.  Barney and Robin are on their way to the wedding.  In the second episode, Marshall finds a way for Marvin and him to get to New York (they share a car with the lady that got kicked off the plane with them).  Barney’s brother gets a divorce, but Barney realizes that this won’t cause his and Robin’s marriage to fail.  We also see a flash forward of Ted and the Mother at the Farhampton Inn a year from now.

   Viewers will hopefully see in the final season the final slap bets, Barney and Robin’s wedding, and getting to know the Mother’s character.  It is confirmed that the Mother will be a regular on the show.  It is also confirmed that the whole final season will take place during the wedding preparations, and we will see how everyone gets to know the Mother before Ted.

   Though it is exciting to finally see the end of probably the longest romance story every created in a sitcom, it is bittersweet to see it go.  I can honestly say that “HIMYM” is my favorite show.  The show is witty, incorporates symbolism in a fascinating way (for example, in previous season the yellow umbrella showed that the Mother was there), and just the whole plot is genius.

   If you have never seen the show, it is good to know that “HIMYM” is a show where Ted Mosby is telling his children how he met their mother, hence the name.  Every episode is a mini story in his big story.  The show tells how Ted’s friends go through the journey with him.  Even though some stories are more about life, it all adds to the plot of how he met their mother.

   My favorite, and some of the best moments on the show were:  the gang performing the “Suit Song,” “the Rabbit vs. Duck debate,” “Slapsgiving,” and “The Pineapple Story.”  For non-viewers, the “Suit Song” is a dancing/singing part in an episode about Suits.  Barney Stintson, a character on the show, is Ted’s self-proclaimed best friend who is a womanizer that always wears suits.  “The Rabbit vs. Duck” debate was an argument where the gang was trying to decide if this visual allusion was a duck or a rabbit, which then turned into a debate whether a rabbit is better than a duck.  This argument influences Robin Scherbatsky’s, Ted’s friend/ex who is from Canada and a news reporter, view on a man she was dating.  “Slapsgiving” is the Thanksgiving special where Marshall Eriksen and Barney make a slap bet (where Marshall can slap Barney at any time without a heads-up).  Finally, “The Pineapple Story” is where Ted tells his kids of how he got drunk and woke up with a butterfly tramp stamp and a Pineapple on his bedside table.  In this episode Ted meets a woman who is not the mom, but they do get engaged, Stella.

   Even if you have never seen “HIMYM,” many channels play reruns.  FX, the CW, and CBS all show it.  Many if not all seasons are now on DVD as well.

   “HIMYM is on CBS and is on at 8:00 PM.  Be sure to watch the final chapters, on what we thought was a never ending love story, of how Lonely Ted finally meets his children’s mother.  I’m sure those poor kids are tired of sitting on that couch as well!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Sons of Anarchy rides on

By: Lexi Martin

   “Sons of Anarchy” returned to FX on September 10 and shocked viewers with a jolting opening episode. “Sons” is a show about a man in his early 30’s that is struggling with the rights and wrongs in the life of an outlaw and being in a motorcycle club. Jax Teller (Charlie Hunnam) is going through his life with a controlling mother, a new wife, an ex-wife who is also a recovering addict, and two young sons. Jax’s late father was president of the MC and the creator of SAMCRO. The position then was taken over by his step-father, whom later stepped down, leaving Jax to take over the degenerating Club. 
   The show started in 2008, and was highly praised from the beginning. Kurt Sutter, the show’s creator, has blown viewers minds with the violence and no-nonsense attitude the Club has. The first two seasons were a little more lighthearted (still violent and angry) then became more rough and dirty as the show progressed through seasons three, four, and five. The Club grew grittier when Clay (Ron Perlman) became corrupt. In season three, Jax’s son was kidnapped by the Irish and the entire season was the Club trying to get him back. Season four, Jax found out that Clay had killed his father then married his mother. Last season Sutter upset fans all over the world when he killed off the lovable character Opie (Ryan Hurst) who gave himself up for the Club and got his head bashed in while in prison.
   Season six premiered Tuesday, September 10 and shocked fans once again. The season started out with Jax’s wife Tara (Maggie Siff) in prison and she doesn’t want her husband to see her that way, miserable and lifeless. Meanwhile, Jax throws a temper tantrum and has random sex with some woman to take his mind off Tara. Meanwhile, a small boy goes to his school with a high powered machine gun and shoots up his school killing children and teachers. This involves the MC because the gun that was used in the school shooting was one of the guns that the Sons put on the street. This is a very controversial topic and Sutter blew the minds of all the people watching. Most of the characters are the same as last season, but a new difference is that Chibs (Tommy Flanagan) is Jax’s new vice president, replacing Bobby (Mark Boone Junior) who is rethinking his passion for the Club.

    “Sons of Anarchy” is one of the best shows on television and if you aren’t watching it then you are missing out. Each episode is an hour long and you are guaranteed to be on the edge of your seat the entire time. Not only is this show violent and crazy but there are some light parts as well. The writing and the cinematography is amazing and will draw you in. If you like suspenseful, violent shows, then tune in on Tuesday nights at 10 on FX to see how the rest of the season unfolds.

Ripley High auxiliary hopes to maintain their first place reputation this year.

In the summer, you can always catch the Ripley High auxiliary working hard,while during the winter, concert season, the girls play their instruments. During the whole summer they’re putting blood, sweat, and tears into getting their routines perfect. This year the 2013-14 auxiliary captains are Tori Quick, and Kelsey Frampton.

It all starts about two weeks after school let’s out when the band begins its summer practices. Marching season starts off learning the routine and music for the Fourth of July parade. When the whole July fourth celebration is said and done, the girls hop straight into Auxiliary camp.Auxiliary camp is three days long. The girls have practice from early in the morning to around two in the afternoon, and the girls learn the whole field show.  Mrs. Poole’s daughter Cayla comes in from New York for a few weeks over the summer to teach girls their choreography for the show. One of the newest members of the auxiliary, Samantha Border says,

“It was a long week, but it was totally worth it because I got to make lots of new friends.” 

As most people know, the field show this year is “Civil War Suite.”During the bands performance, the auxiliary never stay in one place. They’re constantly moving all over the field while the band is making their formations. The girls usually do two flag routines and use other props throughout the show. It is such a long process to learn these the moves and routines because they only have half of the summer and after school practices to get things polished up for performances. The props this year include cloth material where the girls do partner work in a dance. Junior Elizabeth King says,

“I like all the props this year, but the material is my favorite.” Elizabeth also has a flag solo where she dances with senior, James Lanham.

This year the band has three competitions, plus Vikingfest. The band doesn’t compete at Vikingfest in competition because they’re the hosts. The band will only perform as exhibition, as previously done.  Their first competition is Saturday, September 21 at Cabell Midland. Last year at the Cabell Midland festival, the auxiliary won first place in their class, so they’re hoping to keep up the good work this year.

The Ripley Viking band is in the biggest class which includes competitors such as GW, Cabell Midland, Winfield, Spring Valley, and Capitol.Other bands in our class like Cabell Midland and Winfield are doing shows that include topics on war as well. The bands biggest rival is Cabell Midland and has been for quite some time. The band’s competitions this year include in order, The Pumpkin festival at Cabell Midland, The Wayne High school festival, Black Walnut, and our very own Vikingfest. However, everyone’s favorite competition to come watch the band at is the Black Walnut festival in Roane county, where the Vikings have previously won Grand champion and hope to have that title again this year. Captain Tori Quick says,

“My favorite part of Black Walnut is hanging out with friends during our free time and definitely the food.”

Girl takes football field

By: Kelsey Shamblin
   Freshman Bronwynn Cox is the only female on the Viking Football Team.
   Cox has been playing football for 7 years.
   Cox began playing football as a second grader for something new to do, and to make her grandmother mad.
   “[Playing with the boys] is cool but, awkward. I just wish more girls would play,” says Cox.
   In the future, Cox would like to continue playing throughout high school and possibly even college if she is allowed. She is unsure if she could play being a female.
   Cox is the receiver for the freshman football team.
   Her friends are supportive of her being on the football team.
   “They think it’s awesome!” says Cox.
   Hitting is her favorite part of playing football.
   “That’s the only time you can hit and get away with it,” said Cox.
   Fans might wonder about complications for a co-ed team like the locker room.
   Cox says, “There’s not really any complications between the boys and I. We have the locker room situation all worked out, and they treat me like one of them.”
   According to the boys, some difficulties are: other teams not taking the fact that there is a girl on the team serious. “The teams always take it as a joke,” said a group of freshman players.
   “She plays very hard, and helps our team a lot,” said Hunter Stephens.
   As the only female football player on the Viking football team, Cox brings prize to the game.

WVU and Marshall start off well

   The West Virginia Mountaineers and Marshall Thundering Herd kicked of their seasons with wins.  Both teams are now 2-1 with both teams losing close games. West Virginia lost to Oklahoma 16-7, and Marshall lost to Ohio 34-31.
   The Mountaineers’ season opener was against The Tribe of William and Mary.  During this game Paul Millard threw for 237 yards.  The first score of the game was an 11 yard touchdown run by Charles Sims on a 67 yard drive.  But WVU struggled offensively in the first half and did not score again until the second half. 
    In the second half the Mountaineers came back strong after ending the first half losing 17-7. The first score of the second half was a 22-yard field goal on a 70-yard drive. Later in the third quarter Millard got the ball to Ronald Carswell for a 69-yard touchdown.  Ending the game was Wendell Smallwood with a 2-yard run. 
    West Virginia’s second game was a loss, 16-7, against Oklahoma.  Quarterback Paul Millard was 21 of 42 passing for 218 yards.  The only score of the game for WVU was a 75-yard run by Dreamius Smith in the first quarter.  During this game the Mountaineers had 387 total yards, 218 yards passing, and 169 yards rushing.
    The third game was a win of 41-7 against Georgia State at home.  Ford Childress, redshirted freshman had his college debut in this game and also set the freshman record of 359 yards, by throwing three touchdown passes.  WVU had 604 yards of total offense.  Charles Sims had 116 rushing yards, and 1 touchdown on 18 carries.  Freshman Dakiel Shorts led the Mountaineers with 5 receptions for 88-yards and 2 touchdowns.  On the defensive side of the team, they had two key starters out with injuries, Isiah Bruce, and Doug Rigg.  But they still held Georgia to only one 65 yard touchdown run in the second half. 
     Marshall won their opening game against the University of Miami (OH), 52-14.  Quarterback Rakeem Cato threw for 287 passing yards, 5 touchdown passes, and 1 interception thrown.  Overall offense had 591 yards total with 304 rushing yards. 
    The second game was another win of 55-0 against Gardner-Webb. The offense had 509 total yards including 224 rushing yards, and Rakeem Cato having 285 passing yards.  Steward Butler ran 151 yards on 9 carries and scored 3 touchdowns.  Offense had 482 yards total, 116 being rushing yards.  The only downside offense had was 4 turnovers, 3 fumbles, and 1 interception thrown. 
   It appears that both West Virginia and Marshall are going to have successful seasons. 

Monday, September 23, 2013

How can something so “Bad” be so good?

   “Breaking Bad” returned to television for the second half of its 5th and final season August 11. Season 5B has had a large focus on the deteriorating personality of Walter White (Bryan Cranston) as he continues to transform into his crime-lord alter-ego, Heisenberg. Walter, retired from the meth-empire business, is focusing on spending his remaining months with his family, now entirely content with the copious amounts of money he has made. However, new circumstances have arisen causing the imminent fall of White. Thankfully, we, the viewers, are able to watch the downward spiral of one of TV’s most brilliant characters in one of TV’s greatest shows.
   It’s difficult to go into details about the recent plot developments for “Breaking Bad” considering any future viewers won’t want to have the show spoiled for them. From the beginning, ”Breaking Bad” was and still is about a high school chemistry teach with terminal cancer cooking and selling meth in order to make money to leave to his family. Anyone new to the show should start from the beginning knowing only this small, yet intriguing, bit of information. Spoiling the show would be a huge disservice to any potential viewer.
   What can be said is that “Breaking Bad” is one for The Television Hall of Fame. The character archs, plot advances, acting, writing, and fantastic cinematography are unparalleled unless compared to the greatest of TV series such as “The Wire.” The seamless transitions between daytime and nighttime shots, Bryan Cranston’s maniacal laugh in season 4’s “Crawl Space,” and Mike’s (Jonathan Banks) lecture to Walter concerning half measures and full measures are notable staples to fans and critics when looking back on the previous episodes of the modern classic.
   In the current Golden Age of Television with shows such as “Mad Men,” “Homeland,” and “Game of Thrones” receiving nearly unanimous praise from critics and fans, “Breaking Bad” has managed to stick out and even tower above many of its competitors. The series has been nominated for 41 Primetime Emmys, winning a total of nine, three of which belong to Cranston, two to Aaron Paul for his portrayal of Jesse Pinkman, and one for Anna Gunn’s character, Skyler White. Though Cranston didn’t take home another Emmy this year, “Breaking Bad” won its first well-deserved Outstanding Drama Series award despite the fierce competition.

   The decision made in April of 2013 to split the final season of the series in half is one that has confused many fans. No one is entirely sure why the choice was made but, right now, nobody is complaining. The final episode airs September 29 and, though the fans are anxious to see the conclusion, nobody actually wants “Breaking Bad” to end. It’s a catch-22, but at least it involves the final episodes of what very well could be the greatest television series ever created.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Tolley talks football, senior year

            Senior Brandon Tolley is starting his final year of football on the Ripley Viking team.

            “I always look forward to it and hope it goes well,” Tolley says.

            Tolley has been playing for five years in the positions of slot receiver and strong safety.  He has acquired many great memories over the years, but says his favorite is definitely starting Varsity during his junior year.  He has also been fortunate enough to avoid major injuries, which is always a plus.

            As for the new staff overseeing the team, Tolley doesn’t mind the change.

            He says, “It’s a new experience, and I like the energy of the new staff.”

            When it comes to high school in general, Tolley is enjoying being part of the senior class.  When he isn’t training for a game, he enjoys just hanging out with friends.

            The question every senior has to answer is, “What do you plan to do after high school?”  Tolley’s answer:  “I plan on attending a four-year college, but I still haven’t decided where.”  As of yet, he has no plans for athletics in college.

            Whatever the future holds, Tolley is ready to make this football season a great one.

Inside Student Council

When students think of who works to keep this school and its activities organized, they may think of Principal Hosaflook or other faculty members.  Then, after a moment of consideration, they think of Student Council.

Student Council represents the voice of the average kid at Ripley High.  Many times they have spoken up to help give the student body a new activity, privilege, or event, even if the council members have to work tirelessly to make it happen.

This year, Student Council is under a new Student Body President, senior Kelsey Frampton.

“It’s been going really well, and I’m excited to be here for Ripley High School’s 100th birthday,” Frampton says.

Like every year, Student Council is busier than ever.  They have a few new responsibilities as well.

“We’re in charge of the Sweetheart Ball for the first time, and we’re having the dances after football games,” Frampton explains.

The after-game dances are a new feature – a way for students to gather after a football game that doesn’t involve terrorizing any public place in Ripley.  The dances are casual, and the Student Body President advises participants that “If you help pick up trash after the game, you’ll earn a discount on the admission.”

Other yearly events are just as important as new ones.  Student Council is now in charge of the 5-K Walk and Run, organized by the head of the council, student advisor Becky Neal.  They are working with multiple schools, and the event starts beside the track of our own Ripley High School.

Perhaps the most important duty of Student Council is to organize dances and pep rallies to allow students to show their school spirit.  Many surprises are in store this year, particularly from the seniors.

As a final note, Student Council would like to tell you to “participate in class competitions, come to pep rallies, and show your school spirit!  Have a great year, Ripley High!”

Monday, September 16, 2013

Martin ready to dominate field by third game

            By: Tyler Barickman

The question everyone is asking, “When is Preston Martin going to get to play football again?”  Well I have the million dollar answer for the town of Ripley.  First you should know some things about this star football player.  Martin is excited for playing football his senior year.  He’s been playing football since he was 6 years old. 

Through all his years of playing football, he has played running back, quarter back, safety and line-backer.  “I love the new coaches, they know a lot of football” Martin says.  Martin is well known for his domination on the football field, but also well known on the wrestling mat. 

            Even though Martin tore his ACL, MCL, meniscus, and PCL wrestling, he has been rehabbing non-stop to get back on the football field.  Luckily, Martin will be cleared to dominate the field once again in 3 games this season. 

            He didn’t get to do summer practices because he was cleared yet to play, but he made sure to come to every practice to support his teammates.

Martin can’t wait to get back on the football field to help lead the Ripley Vikings to victory!

100 years of excellence

By: Tyler Barickman

            In 1913, Ripley High School was legally created by Jackson County voters.  This was the first year that Ripley High School was officially a high school.  In 1918, the school was shut down due to the Spanish flu epidemic.  In 1920, the high school was re-opened in the grade school as a high school.

“Turn the page and soon you’ll see the brilliant class of 23.  Lads and lasses brave and true, each with fortune, fame to woo.”  According to the Ripley High School yearbook of 1923.

We had the opportunity to look through the Ripley High School yearbook of 1923.  In it we found electives that ranged from the Glee Club to the Hiking Club.  There were many academic electives as well such as the Lyceum Committee and Words Study.

 The president of the Board of Education was C.H. Mckown and the superintendent was J.L. Archer.  The first principal was Mr. York.

Before school started the staff celebrated the 100 year birthday.  Mike Ruben is writing a piece for the 100 year old celebration, which is yet to be revealed.

The first high school building was on Church Street across from today’s Pam Bailey’s School of Dance.  The school was moved to its current location now and built in 1940.  Our school has gotten bigger and more pieces of the school have been added, such as the freshman hallway which was added in 1968.

Ripley High School has been striving to be the best for 100 years and counting.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Sentimental Stutler on the upcoming season

   Senior Ryan Stutler, slot receiver of the Viking 2013-14 football team, is sad and nervous for his final season.  He wants to go out on a high note, which could understandably put on some pressure.  Even though he’s been playing since he was six, his favorite memory was when our team won against South Charleston last year.  If you were to ask him what his favorite high school memory is, Stutler would pause and think.  “I couldn’t even tell you.”  One of his favorites, though, was when he and coach Steve Sayre had to trade shoes.  Stutler forgot his cleats so he used Sayre’s, which led to Sayre having to wear Stutler’s high-top Adidas.

   The new coach is a change from the past three years at Ripley, but Stutler likes him and he thinks the new coach knows what he is doing.  Stutler has actually been coached by him before.

   “The summer training went great as well.  We wished more players came out, but the ones that were there worked hard and got stronger,” Stutler said.

   Stutler is still undecided on where he wants to go to college, but he is thinking about the University of Charleston to study sports management.  Of course, he’d like to play football there, too.

   Stutler wants the fans to know that he will continue to work hard, stay dedicated, and help the team have a successful season this year.

   When he is not playing football, he is preparing to run track.  His events are the 100 and 200 meter dash, and the 4x100 and 4x200 meter relays.

   Despite the nerves, the fans are sure that Stutler’s dedication will help the senior players have an amazing final season filled with triumphant memories.

Jennings ready to kick off a good season

   Caleb Jennings, Viking Football kicker, and soccer player, is ready to have a good final season.

   Out of his two years of playing, his favorite memory was his first kick last year.  “I was nervous, but it went well.”

   Jennings says that summer training was great, and he likes the new coach.  He thinks the new coach has high energy that works for the team.  Jennings said that summer training consisted of a lot of practice and a lot of weight training.

   Jennings does not have any athletic plans for college, but wants to study pre-med.  Right now he wants to go to the University of Charleston.

   He said that his favorite high school memory is not one thing in particular, but any of memory that involves Ms. Heckert’s class.

   Jennings wants the fans to know that, “I like to kick stuff.”  Clearly he has been assigned the right job.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Senior Harrison back for second season

By: Kelsey Shamblin

Senior Kade Harrison, 17, is the wide receiver and defensive end for the Viking Football Team.
“I’m excited and hoping for a good season,” said Harrison.
He has been playing football on and off since he was nine years old. Harrison started playing high school football his junior year, and decided that he would like to play this year as well. Harrison’s favorite football memory was beating South Charleston, was a great victory for the Vikings. The Vikings haven’t beaten South Charleston in over ten years, until last year.
“It has always been a tough game,” says Harrison.
He would like to continue playing football while attending college, although his school is undecided he is thinking about majoring in nutrition. As we all know, we have all new coaching staff.
“Playing with a new coach is definitely different, but it’s a good change,” said Harrison. “Coach Parsons does a great job with the wide receivers, helping us improve every day.”
Not only is Harrison a member of the Varsity Football team, but Harrison is also a member of the Ripley Varsity Basketball team, where he has been playing since he was five years old.
Harrison will surely have a great final football season, and will help the varsity football team to many victories.

McClanahan back once again

By: Kelsey Shamblin

    Senior Brandon McClanahan is the offensive and defensive tackle for the Vikings.
   He says, “I’m very excited and looking forward to my senior year of football.”
   He believes the Viking football team will have a successful season and many victories. Coach Tennant has prepared the team well, he believes.
   McClanahan has been playing football since being on C-Team as a child.
   McClanahan’s favorite memory from football, was beating South Charleston last year. It was a great victory for the Vikings because, we hadn’t beat the Eagles in over ten years.
   After high school, McClanahan plans to go to Hobart Institute of Welding Technology, where he plans to start his career.
   McClanahan is only a member of the Varsity Football Team. After, high school he does not plan on continuing to play sports.

Tennant brings new excitement to Ripley

By:  Baylee VanKirk
   New Ripley head football coach Dave Tennant is hoping to bring a new energy to the program, taking over for Jimmy Frashier who resigned earlier this year to become an administrator at Ravenswood High School. Tennant served as the head coach at Eastern High in Ohio for the past two seasons.
   “I think they’re ready for a change,” Tennant said. “I think they’re ready for the excitement that we are going to bring. They’re excited and I think it (practice) went really well.”  
Tennant has spent the past week or so transitioning into his new job, one he had hoped to eventually land after spending a brief tenure with the program in 2010.
   “When I got the call that I had the job, it was an amazing feeling, because three years ago I coached here and my heart never left,” he said.
   “When I first took over there (Eastern High), we had only two seniors and lost both of them to injuries,” Tennant said. “It was a complete rebuilding process and we weren’t expected to be competitive right away.”
   Following three hard-fought wins in year one, Tennant saw significant progress in 2012 as his club finished with a 6-4 record. But it was an overall mindset change from his team that came along with those wins – something he hopes to implement with the Vikings as well.
   “I hate to lose. I’ve been around successful programs from Wahama to programs in Cleveland. Every experience I’ve been through, every coaching stop I have had and the people I have surrounded myself with, I’ve learned a lot from them – it’s made me a better coach.” said coach Tennant
   “We turned the page this past year where they started believing in the program, to where teams that had beat us by 30 in year one, we beat in year two,” he said.
   It’s a somewhat similar rebuilding process that Tennant is now faced with at Ripley. The Vikings have just a handful of playoff wins all-time, one of which came back in 2009 under Frashier. And while the schedule will be rough in the loaded Mountain State Athletic Conference, Tennant is anxious to face those challenges.
   “I believe they’re going to build off of the excitement that I’m bringing,” Tennant said. “They’ve had some good years, but they’ve also had some struggles as well. I believe we can set the foundation for something that eventually could be great.”
   Ripley went 5-5 this past season, winning 36 games in all over the past decade under Frashier.
   Tennant played college football with Ohio University and plans to bring some concepts from his playing days and incorporate them into our playbook.
   “We’re going to change whole philosophy of the program,” Tennant said. “It’s full speed every single day. There are no plays off. I love how they do it in college – even if you’re in shells, you’re at full speed. We’ll get them ready in practice, so that they won’t be surprised when it’s game time.”
 “Every experience I’ve been through, every coaching stop I have had and the people I have surrounded myself with, I’ve learned a lot from them – it’s made me a better coach.”
And whether or not the wins come right away for the Vikings, it’s clear the program now has a fresh start, one Tennant is hoping to accelerate to the next level.

Hall back in action

By: Audra Thomas
   The crowd pleaser, linebacker Austin Hall, returns to the Viking football team for his senior year.  Hall has been playing for Ripley for six years now, and has been a presence well known throughout that time.
   Under the new coaching staff, with Head Coach Dave Tennant, everyone is expecting good things coming from Death Valley this season.
   “The new coaches bring in lots of energy, and also lots of knowledge about the game.” Hall says.
   He admits he is an emotional player as he talked about his favorite football memory.
   “At the end of the (Ravenswood) game I couldn’t help but cry a little bit because I had never actually won the Hatchet game, and it meant a lot to have been part of it,” says Hall.
   Other than just being on the field, Hall will return to the wrestling mat and is also looking forward to joining the track team this year, where he will be throwing shot and discus this year.  In the end, Hall would like to thank the community for all the support they have given to the team throughout the years.

New addition to the football game

By: Audra Thomas
   At Ripley High we have gotten a new blow up football helmet for our football team to run through at the beginning of every game. The blow up is a very exciting addition to football game festivities. We are not the first school in the state to have one; schools like Cabell Midland, Hurricane, and Martinsburg have had this for some time now. This is somewhat exciting knowing that they are some of the best schools in the state in athletics.
   Mayor, Carolyn Rader had the idea for us.  The blow up was donated to us by Harrison and Holmes PLLC who also donated a fog machine to use with the blow up.
   “I thought it would be a cool new idea and something nice for the boys to have,” said Mayor Rader.
   Having this run out is very exciting for our school and football program. We have never had anything like this and it is a new experience for everyone in the school who comes to the games. Watching the team run out and how excited they are sets the mood for the night.
   “It was pretty cool and exciting to see and was a lot better than what we had in the past years,” says fan Jamison Hunt.
   Also, we should thank Harrison and Holmes for donating this to us.  They did not have to do this for us, but they wanted to give back to our team. In addition to that, we need to thank Mayor Rader for everything she has done for Ripley High and without her we would not have any of these luxuries.

Harpold back in blue

It’s a bird. It’s a plane. No! It’s senior Drew Harpold streaming down the field as your 2013-14 receiver! Harpold says, “I didn’t play football for my Freshman, Sophomore, and Junior year because I just wanted to enjoy my summers.” He also says, “Not playing for those three years was regretful, and coming back this year made me realize how much I’ve missed it.”  Making his grand return to the football field since middle school, anticipation is to be expected in the stands and on the field.

Not only can you spot Harpold shredding on the football field, but he’ll be tearing it up on the basketball court this winter with the rest of the team.

This will be his last year of athletics until he decides whether or not to continue them in college. Thankfully while on the field and court, Drew has managed to stay in one piece with no major injuries. Harpold says “Summer practices for football weren’t bad at all, they were fun, yet, tough.” Something that not only Drew, but the rest of the seniors had to adapt to and work with is a new coaching staff in which Harpold says “The new staff is a good change, but definitely something to get used to.”

 So get ready Ripley High School students and fans, Drew and the crew are going to be returning to the field on August 30 on our own turf ready to take on Parkersburg South.

New assistant football coaches get good reception

   The football team has received a whole new assistant coaching staff this year led by head coach Dave Tenant.  We now have Shane Casto, Kemp Kelly, Arthur Reynolds, Jim Abshire, Luke Parsons, and Vincent Riffe coaching the football team in a hopeful season.

 “All the coaches get along great together and with the team. It’s pretty awesome.” Assistant coach, Luke Parsons, said about his time coaching so far.

   Parsons teaches business classes at the high school, and Casto teaches physical education at Ripley Middle School. The students all have their fingers crossed for a winning season, and with games starting, they’ll soon see if that’s a possibility. Senior football player, Cody Harris, speaks about his team and the new kinship they’ve formed with the coaches.

   “All of us are getting along pretty good with the new assistant coaches; they’re good guys and Coach Kelley’s pretty cool.”

   Many students are in the dark when it comes to hiring new coaches. Can anyone become one? What determines who is qualified enough for the job? If it’s between someone with a teaching certificate and someone that doesn’t have one, the person with the certificate will get the job because they’re already in the system.


Senior Nathan Tucker prepares for football season

Since he started playing football in middle school, Ripley Vikings’ senior linebacker, Nathan Tucker, has loved the “competitive atmosphere” surrounding the game. After suffering a torn ACL during his sophomore year, he played one game with it torn then required reconstructive surgery. He had to go through pre-surgery therapy to strengthen for surgery then afterwards he started walking again the next day. Before he could return to football, he first had to get the swelling down and flexibility back. He continued with strength exercises to do so. He started squatting weights and built up to running long distances. Finally he could start cutting and jumping again.
“The mental part is the hardest,” Tucker said. “You have to trust your new knee and act just like it’s the original. A lot of guys had the same or similar injury and the best thing about being injured was that you get to mentor these guys.”
He has visited each and plans on going to the U.S. Naval Academy, West Point, the U.S. Air Force Academy, or the U.S. Coast Guard Academy. Acceptance into these schools is only by appointment and must be nominated by Senators and the House of Representatives. If accepted, schooling is completely paid for. After four years of schooling, he must serve five years.
Tucker’s favorite memory in football was during his junior year when beating Ravenswood in overtime.

“Time flies,” he said. “It’s hard to believe that it’s already senior year.”

Homecoming will be MARVELous.

It’s September and the roar of the Ripley High student body tells you that our 2013 homecoming is near. Your adrenaline will be pumping on Friday September 27, and Saturday night as we take on the Huntington Highlanders as our homecoming opponent. Not only do we have the football game, but we crown our victors for Mr. and Miss Viking for each grade. This year your Senior class candidates for Mr. Viking are: Preston Martin, Austin Hall, and Parker Lively. For the girls: Danielle Vealey, Candace Mellen, and Molli Cunningham. This year our Homecoming theme is Superheroes. Be creative and original with your hallways and floats. The homecoming parade will be on Friday the 27 during school as usual. The parade route will be the same as before. The homecoming dance will be Saturday, September 28, DJ’d by Cole Waybright. Remember to submit pictures of your dress to assistant Principal Bev Shatto beforehand ladies, or else you will not be permitted to go to the dance. The Index card rule is being applied for the dance as well. Remember folks, if your grandparents wouldn’t approve, neither will your staff and principles. May the best class win each competition and remember to be creative with your floats and hallways.

Newly installed security system protects students from possible threats

            The new security system in the school was installed this past summer to protect students and staff from possible threats. With the new security system installed, visitors must come through the senior doors and are buzzed in by the main office.
“Every door locks and there are hardly any inconveniences with the system other than at times it gets hectic in the office,” said secretary Kristy Sayre.
According to principal Will Hosaflook, the number of buzzes per day averages at about 500, which is a combination of both students and visitors.
Student tardies are minimal, with most of them occurring in the morning during first period. When computer teacher Tonya Ball’s fourth period class was asked if the new security system has caused any inconveniences for students and staff, there were none except for the senior doors that have only small windows at the top of them and that occasionally causes people to get hit by the doors coming through on the other side. If a visitor is signing a student out, they must wait for them inside of the senior doors. If they need to go to the counselor’s office, someone will walk them there. If the visitor needs to talk to one of the teachers, they must sign in inside the office so that they know they’re on campus.
Finally, there is a red button that, if threatened, can be pressed to lock down the entire building. In this situation, no one’s cards work except for emergency personnel. If the red button is pressed, it will automatically call 911.