Category Archives: Team Features

Lady Mustangs Basketball

Profile on Girls’ Basketball Team

Chase Ellington ’16 | Staff Writer

Building family and showing respect are the two McNamara pillars that describe the 2014-2015 girls basketball team. The success of this season caused a huge uproar.

Compared to last year, this team formed an unbreakable bond — a sisterhood grown through working together. Although minor faults affected the season outcome, the outcome was stronger than expected.

“I think where it all goes downhill is when it comes to us finishing,” shooting guard Simone Smith said. “We started off better than ever but not everything ended the way we expected.”

A case of when the team worked together is the Riverdale Baptist game. The team was down by seventeen with four minutes remaining, and a technical foul was called on the opposing team due to their lack of knowledge of how many times out remained.

Senior Kholby Oliver ‘15 was called to the foul line, isolated and full of pressure, to pull off a remarkable victory. Missing one out of two of the game winning shots, she still lead the team to an extraordinary win.

The game showed that when working together, any obstacle formed against these strong young women could be conquered. After meeting with the team it was clear to see that there love and passion for the sport is overwhelming. The sisterhood formed slowly, because of the need to build trust and not let outside attributes get in the way of major success.

Their motivation, directed by Coach Frank Oliver, was well noticed. “He never gave up on us,” said Mangela Ngandjui ‘16, power forward and a leading scorer.

The outcome of the season was not in the favor of the crowd. A sad loss against Seton will go down in Mustang history, because of the closing remarks of the game itself. A crunch time situation game result of 41 to 40 left fans with dropped hearts and distraught faces.

The fight for victory was clearly stated, and the loss formed so much positivity amongst the team, because they are ready to come back better than ever and leave with the gold.

As we patiently wait for the 2015-2016 season, the current team expects to take it all next year and give our school another championship.

Look out for our Lady Mustangs as the uproar continues.

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The Greatest Game

Thomas Leonard ‘15 | Staff Writer |

 

The year was 1990. George H.W. Bush was the president, the Berlin Wall had just been torn down, Vanilla Ice was one of the most popular musical artists, and Bishop McNamara Football was on top of the world. Their dominant regular season run through the highly competitive Washington Metropolitan Athletic Conference (WMAC) gave the fans of the Mustangs one of the most exciting and rewarding seasons in the history of McNamara football.

    The season began with a convincing 33-14 win over Madison High School, which was followed by a difficult 13-31 defeat at the hands of Garfield High School in Woodbridge, Virginia. This would stand as the Mustangs’ only loss in this season, as the next three games got the season back on track as McNamara dominated Holy Cross, Robert E. Lee, and O’Connell high schools by an average margin of 24 points.

As the season continued, Bishop McNamara prepared for their impending matchup against their conference archrival, the Stags of Dematha High School. One of the most important moments of the season occurred before that game. This event is especially memorable to current Math Department Chair Mrs. Angelina Diehlmann LR ‘85 who was a teacher at the time.

She remembers that the entire school gathered together for a pep rally. At this rally, the students and teachers sat in silence as the captain of the football team intently told his players that they had more heart and wanted to win the game more than Dematha.

Mrs. Diehlmann said that as the entire school community sat, “So quietly you could hear a pin drop,” they understood just how tight-knit and passionate the football team was. According to her, it was at this moment that everyone knew that they would win the championship.

However, going into the final minute of that game, the Stags, leading 3-0, were poised to end McNamara’s championship hopes. Dematha had the Mustangs right where they wanted them with 20 yards to go on fourth down.

The ensuing play, which the 1990-91 yearbook referred to as,“The most dramatic play in McNamara football history,” was vividly described in the October 7, 1990 issue of the Washington Post. Quarterback Girardeau “Junior” Bynum ‘91 got the snap, and lateralled the ball to wide receiver Asim Penny ‘91. Penny then threw downfield to wide receiver Andre Martin ‘92 who never stopped running until he reached the endzone. This touchdown proved to be the final score in the Mustangs 7-3 upset of Dematha.

Current McNamara teacher Garry Imes ‘92 has fond memories of this signature win that occurred in his junior year. He remembers that after this victory, the school community knew that the Mustangs were championship bound.

Although this was not the final game of the Mustang’s year, in many ways, it represented the climax of the 1990 season. After the Dematha game, the Mustangs easily dispatched the rest of their opponents, ending with a 47-3 rout of the Good Counsel Falcons; a game that was emblematic of the season as a whole in terms of McNamara’s dominance.

Despite the manner in which McNamara easily beat their opposition that season, they were still considered to be underdogs. Mr. Imes remembers how other schools would come to McNamara with bigger players, larger coaching staffs, and more expensive budgets. Despite the advantages the other schools had, McNamara still showed that it was one of the best teams in the area.

However, 1990 marked the end of the WMAC, as the next season was the first season of the current WCAC. 1990 also marked the last time the Mustangs have won it all, but if that season proved anything, it proved that the success of a team is not based on the price of their uniforms, the accolades of their coaches, or even the size of the players. It’s based on their will to win. As for the success of the current football team, many believe history has a way of repeating itself.

WCAC Cuts Soccer Schedule in Half

McNamara Players and Coach Not Fans of New Schedule

Andrew Feather ‘13 | Sports Editor

Despite opposition from some coaches, this year the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference has adopted a new schedule for soccer teams. The new schedule has cut the number of conference games in half — nine for boys, eight for girls. In addition the amount of total games allowed has been slashed by five to twenty.

One of the coaches against the schedule change was Bishop McNamara Boys Soccer Coach Mr. Robert Nolte, who believes that the significant cut in conference games will create less parity in the WCAC.

“It’s taking away from the importance of our league championship,” Nolte said about the change. “I think when we create a schedule where teams are permitted to play more out-of-league games than in league games, it takes away from the specialness of winning the WCAC.” About schools who supported the change, Nolte stated, “I think that they’re looking more towards playing programs of equal skill level of themselves rather than kind of thinking more towards winning the WCAC.”

Although Mr. Nolte disagrees with the change, he does see some positives to it. “I think we were playing too many games in our season. When we are playing at least two, sometimes three games per week over the course of two or so months, it puts a lot of wear and tear on an athlete’s body,” Nolte said. This was one of the major factors cited in the case to change the schedule.

An email statement released by then WCAC Soccer Chairman William Simmons read, “Soccer is a sport that is firmly entrenched in the year-round club first mentality. High calibre players are routinely playing 3-5 competitive matches on the weekend for clubs and returning to school to play 2-3 games during the week. This routine, backed up by medical studies, show that soccer players have among the highest injury rates caused by ‘overuse’ of any athlete. They play year round. The elite teams in our league rarely practice on Monday because their players are exhausted from games, traveling nationally sometimes, and need time during the week to recover.”

Many of the players, both boys and girls, don’t like the new schedule. Boys Varsity goalkeeper Tarik Endale ‘12 said, “I liked the old schedule better. There are no second chances against teams now, and I like having more games to play.” Mike Andreozzi ‘12 and Stephen Czecha ‘12 both reiterated what Endale said, complaining about having less games when they really just want to play soccer.

On the women’s side of the ball Cathy Anderson ‘12 said “I haven’t liked it because it made the season feel really short,” and goalkeeper Sara Cavanaugh ‘13 said “It’s not as fun for players because we don’t play as many games and we only get one shot at each team.”

Disappointed with the new schedule or not, the players attitudes won’t change. “It doesn’t matter how many times we play a team,” said Cameron Turner ‘13. “We are going to go out there and play our best no matter who the opponent is.”

Softball Team Makes Miracle Run To Championship

In February, first year McNamara softball coach Angelina Diehlmann claimed that her team would be “on the map” by the end of the season.  Not too many believed her, but she stuck to her word and came one run away from perfecting her vision.

After a shaky 2-6 start to the season, a spark was lit in the team and a massive win streak ensued, beginning with a 7-1 victory over Good Counsel. The Lady Mustangs won the next nine games and rode their way into the championship on a ten-game win streak.

The WCAC Championship game took place at Robert E. Taylor Stadium at the University of Maryland on Saturday, May 14, and pitted the Lady Mustangs against the Knights of Bishop O’Connell.

The McNamara squad has been led primarily by the nine seniors on the team, especially catcher Rose Shaver, who went 4-for-4 including a huge double to set up a scoring run, and shortstop Stephanie Ayres, who had two incredible diving catches for outs early in the game. The effort of these two along with the rest of the team gave the Lady Mustangs a commanding 3-0 lead going into the bottom of the fifth. This is where the game turned against the Mustangs.

When O’Connell catcher Jillian Ferraro stepped up to bat, she was aiming for a routine base hit, but ending up getting a triple following a McNamara error, which also sent two runners home to make it 3-2. Following another base hit, Ferraro was able to score to tie it up. The Lady Mustangs were unable to score in the sixth, giving O’Connell the momentum for the last few moments of the game. Unfortunately, O’Connell utilized the momentum swing and dominated the bottom of the sixth, keeping runners on all bases throughout the inning. Luckily for the Mustangs, only one runner scored before they were able to get out of the situation, but it was imperative that they scored in the seventh and final inning to keep their hopes alive. Unfortunately, they were unable to do so and O’Connell won their eighth consecutive softball championship.

 

Buzzer not operated by either team, in controversial DeMatha game

A good game all the way through ended with a controversial call
(Alexis Jenkins ’11/THE STAMPEDE)

By Anthony Brown ‘12
Staff Writer

The championship-like rematch between the McNamara Mustangs and DeMatha Stags, held last Tuesday at the Showplace Arena, ended with a controversial call that left McNamara fans and players stunned, upset and wanting answers.

Teacher Mr. Jeffrey Southworth, the announcer for Bishop McNamara basketball, said that during the Seton game the person controlling the clock was having trouble handling the horn (or “buzzer” if you will) and officials had to be called  over countless times when the game clock and shot clock weren’t in sync with one another. To his knowledge, that individual wasn’t affiliated with either team  — Bishop McNamara’s shot clock and game clock handlers were denied access and told to sit in the fan section. Because of the those complications with the shot and game clock, they were seperated and worked on two seperate devices.

A quick recap of what happened:

Coach Martin Keithline stated that the game plan for DeMatha was to spread their team out and use the Mustangs  quickness off the dribble to get to the basket. Also, zone defense and high pressure were going to be key because of DeMatha’s size down low and the quickness  of their guards. The Mustangs certainly did that coming out strong on both sides of the ball, giving them a 3 point lead which increased to 7 by the end of the first quarter which led to a score of 16-9.

In the second quarter, the Mustangs kept their lead with strong play from Ibn Muhammed ‘11, Marcus Thornton ‘11, Callon Dailey ‘11 and Stephan Jiggetts ‘13. The Mustangs ended the first half with a 35-21 score.

The strong play of Dailey and Thornton helped the Mustangs hold on to a 9 point lead in the third quarter and the score at the end of the third was 49-40.

However, the fourth quarter was when problems arose. The Mustangs defense was overpowered by DeMatha’s size and the game got close a few minutes in. It was a back and forth battle down to the final seconds. With 1.9 seconds left to go after a missed shot by Ibn Muhammed ‘11, DeMatha called a timeout. During the Inbound play, the ball was thrown all the away across court and then Dematha got a shot off but it missed and the game was going in to overtime, so the fans, players and coaches thought.

Some how DeMatha called another timeout but what was strange about that was the referee next to DeMatha’s bench couldn’t hear the timeout being called but a referee all the way across the court heard it and 3 seconds were put back on the game clock. The game ended with Dematha getting a rebound tip-in which fell through and the game was over.

The Mustangs have only a few games left on the schedule, but nevertheless they hope to get a chance to build momentum going into the playoffs.

[box]See Matt Nunez’s photo and read more coverage of the game here.[/box]

Fresh paint, new turf, new track

Athletes could not walk on the track to get onto the field, even on game day. (Carmela Rourke '11/The Stampede). September 18. 2010.

Fresh paint, new turf, new track

Installation of new track is delayed and then finished

By Lezla Gooden ‘11
Staff Writer

On your mark, get set….

A delay in the construction of a new track has, until recently, caused our student athletes to practice a very important virtue: patience.

This past May the administration announced that a new track would be installed. The completion of the track was scheduled to be finished mid July, meaning that the track would only be a five-week project. Excited for the new track, various teams and clubs patiently waited for their new addition. When the school year began, the track was not yet complete, due to a set of unfortunate events. According to President Marco Clark, “The contractor had a delay on equipment because it was being used at another job.”

When the old track was installed in 1999, the administration was told that it would have a ten-year life span, and so it did. Going on its eleventh year, the track began to deteriorate.

“The asphalt in the track started to become visible,” Ms. Jessica Nash, athletic trainer, explained. “There have been some injuries caused by it as well, such as shin splits.” Students complained about the wear of the track, saying that it was painful to practice on.

The delay caused some games and practices to be rescheduled such as those of the Men’s Soccer team. “For the first game, we were hoping to play at home to have the fan support for the start of the season,” said Jorden Howard ‘11. The boys had to postpone the home game and travel away instead. “It was disorienting for us,” explains Josh King ‘12.

To make up for the delay, Doc Inc. (the contractor) will be giving McNamara complementary drainage around the field.

The new track was completed on Oct 12, 2010. It features vibrant colors of maroon and gold, whereas the old track was simply black asphalt with plain white lines.

Already the track team has held practice on the track and enjoyed it. “Compared to the old track, it is much lighter on my feet and not as hard,” said track member Shanelle Debraux ‘11.

Mustangs Go Pink

Darius Baxter '11, watches Varsity Football's Pink game against St. John's. (Carmela Rourke '11/ The Stampede)

Mustangs Go Pink

Bishop McNamara High School support Breast Cancer Awareness month for the second year in a row through the Mustangs Go Pink Campaign

By Alexandra Vinci ‘11
Editor in Chief

If real men wear pink then McNamara is full of real men.

The “Mustangs Go Pink” campaign is up for its second year in a row and the school is going full-fledged pink. The science department, National Science Honor Society, student council, and the athletic department teamed up to get the school behind Breast Cancer Awareness month.

The volleyball, soccer, and football teams were all “‘swaggin’ pink” as Nico Law ‘11 said on WMAC. They had pink tape, pink socks, and pink pre-wrap so when the players were competing, one could clearly tell they were representing the pink.

Thomas Ferrara ‘11 showed his excitement for his “pink” game, “It’s going to be fun. We get to wear pink socks. And maybe I’ll go out and buy some pink shoelaces, and maybe I’ll get a pink headband. Maybe.”

The rest of the school’s chance to get involved in the dress down day on Friday, October 8th. For two dollars, one could dress down in an outfit that was at least 50% pink, and many students went further than that. All of the proceeds are to be donated to the National Breast Cancer Foundation. According to Ms. Kazimer the school raised about $2000 in its efforts.

Last year was the first year for the campaign, an idea that was brought to Ms. Denise Kazimer, science department chair, by the volleyball team. They had taken part in the Dig Pink volleyball tournament that had supported breast cancer as well. Ms. Kazimer then took the idea saying that “In supporting this, we’re supporting all cancers.” Many members of the McNamara community have been either personally affected or known someone who is affected by cancers such as Breast Cancer.

To add to the events, Jennifer Retener ‘11 decided to contribute with her senior service project. She made pink hair bows and sold them at her church and at lunch for one dollar. All of the proceeds went to the National Breast Cancer Foundation as well. She got the idea because making these bows was already a hobby of hers. “She’s always made bows ever since she was little, so she thought she could use one of her skills for the betterment of something else,” said Jennifer’s close friend Kelsey Jones ‘11.

The fact that the whole school was getting behind to support meant a lot to some students. Brandon Whitelow ‘13 appreciated the support, being that he has an Aunt who has survived breast cancer. “It’s good to see kids who understand,” he said.