March 2011

Girls Soccer Closes Out Season Today

By Alexandra Gutierrez |

The girls’ varsity soccer team kicked off their pre-season with a 3-0 winning streak, but now that district is almost over, the team isn’t looking at a winning season.

Since Feb. 8, when district started, the girls have lost all their games except two; a (0-0) tie against Johnson and a close (1-0) win in their second game against Lee. The team’s statistics show slight improvement in the last five games against Johnson, Roosevelt, Churchill, Reagan and their recent win against Lee.

“We’ve been working hard and giving it our all in every game,” sophomore Jacqueline Esquivel said.

This year, the team has many returning lettermen, and that adds to the team’s unity on the field and brought new friendships. The graduating girls on the team feel that playing soccer during their high school career was a good experience and hope to continue being associated with the sport throughout out the next few years of their life.

“I’ve learned a lot,” senior Kathryn Vasquez said. “I’m not going to play legitimately on a team but I will be playing soccer, it’s been a big part of my life.”

The team will be closing their season today, March 22 against MacArthur at 5 p.m. at the BAC-W Soccer Field.

“The kids have been working hard in every game and every minute,” coach Audrey Ambrose said. “We look forward to the coming season next year with the returning players and the new freshmen.”

Softball’s Ready For a Playoff Run

Photo courtesy James Madison Sports | Story By Richard Hernandez |

With a pre-district record of 13-6 the softball team is going into their first district games.

“We should be pretty competitive [in district],” coach Laurie Friesenhahn said, “and we are projecting ourselves to be in the playoffs.”

The team’s start to their district schedule hasn’t been what they had hoped for, with a 14-3 loss against Johnson, a 1-4 lost against Roosevelt, and a close loss against Churchill 5-6 . But like any other team their goal is to make it to playoffs, and the team believes that keeping your head high after a loss brings the right mentality.

“My hopes, as a senior, is to make playoffs for the first time. By basically just playing as a team, hit really good, and to stay positive,” senior Stefanie Fuentes said.

With the team lacking the playoff experience, the returning varsity players are making the best of their chances at playoffs.

“I feel that our team is better and stronger this year. So we can make playoffs by just playing hard like we have been,” Fuentes added.

Softball’s next game is tuesday Mar.22 against Roosevelt, and the team is planning for a better outcome to that game.

“We’re a very competitive team and the girls are very fun to watch play, but we are hard on ourselves when we make a mistake we take it pretty hard,” Coach Friesenhahn said.” We are Perfectionist.”

Newly Designed Landscaping and Amphitheater Provides Hidden Meaning

By Makala Finley

With new state-of-the-art infrastructure, the campus is slowly evolving into what looks like a college campus. Aside from the new buildings, newly-thought-out landscaped areas are beginning to make an appearance. While driving through the front “circle,” students and parents may notice a newly-designed area known as “The Victory Garden.” The new area features two plaques, landscaped flowers, and a sidewalk to enhance the side of the library. To add to the college vibe, a JM symbol is under the works to light up whenever a sports team brings home a victory. Though covered in pea gravel at this time, eventually paver will be added to the victory garden, and students and alumni will be able to purchase a piece of pavement with their names and graduations year. The Victory Garden was made possible by Joeris, the company who also built the new fine arts facility, athletic complex and the the AG area. They provided Madison with this new garden at no cost.

“It was nice of Joeris to do this for us, however it’s kind of the right thing to do since construction was kinda held back,” senior Dallas Campbell said. “It definitely makes the campus more unique compared to other schools.”

Featured in the Victory Garden are two plaques. One plaque is dedicated dedicated to a 1999 Madison graduate, Lance Graham, who was killed in the line of duty at Desert Storm. The other is dedicated to the Class of 1989 and the late Principal Youngham who worked at Madison and then Central Office. He was killed in a boating accident.

The Victory Garden doesn’t just add beautification to the Maverick campus, it also provides students with insight to where Madison has come from.

“I just feel it [the Victory Garden] represents tradition and history. We’re coming up on 40 years of history and students should know historical significance,” principal Chris Thompson said. “Plus, it’s prettier.”

In addition to the Victory Garden is also the new amphitheater known as The Gilmore. This newly-built theater building represents a story of unity. “The Gilmore” got its name from the story of George and Polly Gilmore, once enslaved African Americans who were given the opportunity of a lifetime courtesy of James and Dolly Madison. After emancipation, George Gilmore got the opportunity to lease land from Dr. James Madison in the late 1860s. By 1870, the Gilmores had built a cabin and then in the early 1900s they had finally purchased 16 acres of land from Madison. Eventually, a plaque will be added to the amphitheater and it will explain the significance of the name in concurrence with what Madison stands for.

” It’s a place where we all come together. That is what this family did; they established unity. Unity, equity, whatever you may call it, it’s what we are,” Thompson said.

Adminstrators have high hopes for the message that is portrayed through The Gilmore.

“It will signify the inclusive nature of the James Madison High School and what we stand for, and what our founding fathers stood for,” Assistant Principal Joseph Williams said.

Words With Friends: Epidemic

Photo Courtesy incase/Flickr (Creative Commons license) | Story by Lorenzo Cisneros Recently there has been much talk filling the hallways about a new trend on the up-rising but this time, it has nothing to do with clothes, shoes, or styles, but a game: Words With Friends to be exact. The game that is just like scrabble but allows the user to play against their friends from where ever they are as long as they have an internet connection on their phone or ipod.

“Everybody in the world is playing! I am addicted to it,” junior Josh Hanson said.

The game was first released for the Iphone/Ipod on July 6, 2009 and then later released for Android in February. In a recent survey of 100 students, 62 of them say they have allowed the app to occupy a spot on their phone. Although this is just a small portion of the school, it is imaginable how many students and teachers play this app school wide. Although a large majority plays, it is not for everybody.

“It’s a waste of time. I can’t just sit there and play scrabble. I have better things to do,” senior Cierra Harper said.

This is one game that teachers don’t seem to mind as much, possibly because it helps with spelling and language knowledge.

“Oh my gosh! That’s the number one game out there right now. I see students playing it in my class all the time,” Diane Bode said. “At least they’re doing something educational.”

Take our poll. Do you play words with friends? Why is it so addicting? Comment us now.

Art makes unique project

By Kristian Bush| Photo By Courtney Bowles

Art I recently finished their latest studio project on a very unusual canvas, an umbrella. Mrs.Freeman’s four Art I classes all contributed their own unique artwork onto this one umbrella.

“I thought it was interesting, that’s why I chose this studio,” Freeman said.

This type of artwork is called mixed media, which in this case uses print making. In this project students used stamps on the umbrella to represent each individual student and their culture.

“We use stamps for our own painting and we wanted to create something where we put all of our stamps together,” sophomore Mitchell Brown said.

The umbrella will be put on display with other artwork hanging off it on Apr.12 and 13 at Night Gallery.

Oscars Prove Nothing Spectacular

Photo credit: Scott Beale/laughing squid | Story By Brittany Weaver |

On Feb. 27, the Oscars announced winners for excellence in film in 2010. Oscar hosts Ann Hathaway and James Franco are said to be the two youngest ever. But even in their youth the excitement was dull. With few puns and no concerts the new generation of audiences nodded their way to sleep. Unlike other award shows, the Oscars seem to frown upon any form of entertainment in their show.

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