Feather annual recap displays FC accomplishments
Over the course of the school year, The Feather covers nearly everything that occurs on campus and many events in the community. With the help of the photojournalism and video staff, the Fresno Christian online newspaper was able to publish videos, photos, slideshows, podcasts, comics and articles. The Feather would like to take a moment and reminisce on all the amazing things around the FC campus and community in the 2016-17 year.
Brother to Brother returned once again under the leadership of long time teacher and advisor, Terry Richards. The program, which allows high school boys to mentor junior high boys, continued their off campus lunches and Bible devotions on a regular basis.
The California Scholarship Federation (CSF) club offered tours of college campuses throughout the school year while also encouraging students to put in more service hours. The club, led by English teacher Andrea Donaghe, embarked on a college trip in the fall that took them on tours of UCLA, USC and other universities.
International Club was offered again to international students on campus. Advisor Tamera Hill aimed to build a strong community among the students. President Dana Kwon and co-president Clark Zhu led the International Club through the year.
This year Debate Club was introduced. The club, advised by Bible teacher Donn Rojeski and led by students Natalya Hill, ‘18, and Celeste Counts, ‘18, covered difficult topics and helped students form arguments around their opinions or beliefs.
Hannah Nale, ‘17, and Jennifer King, ‘17, led their club T.E.A. Talks (Teaching, Encouraging, Accepting) for a second consecutive year. The club, open for all high school girls, strove to bring girls together and build their spiritual relationship with God. T.E.A. Talks met on campus as well as occasional gatherings at one of the girls’ houses.
Led by Susan Ainley, ensemble, high school and junior high choir took several trips to various festivals, most notably the Worldstrides Heritage Festival. Junior high, high school and ensemble all earned the top rating, a Gold Award. Women’s ensemble, Bellezza, was awarded the Outstanding Choir award, the top heritage honor, with a score of 98 out of 100.
The Bellezza Ensemble also sang the national anthem before a San Francisco Giants game. The girls were given the opportunity after sending a recording of their performance of the national anthem to the Giants’ organization.
Drama teacher Kyle Dodson led his class in the musical, ‘You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.” The students performed the play three times over the course of a weekend and starred seniors Jeremiah Sieperda and Kathryn Blankenship as Charlie Brown and Lucy, respectively.
Incoming freshmen players allowed the volleyball team to begin a junior varsity team and time for new players to practice and learn the sport. Girls volleyball went 3-6 in league play and 13-13-1.
Under new head coach Russ Counts, the football team returned with the same success as the previous season. In a blowout victory against the Alpaugh Buffaloes, the Eagles won the Valley championship, 66-12. The football team struggled in 11-man games, but the Eagles went 10-1 overall and 3-0 in league play.
With five players, the girl’s tennis team lacked the manpower needed to win matches. The Lady Eagles went 0-11 in league play.
With an overall record of 17-16, the varsity boys basketball team benefited from the experience and cohesion the returning seniors brought to the team. However, illness and injuries riddled the team during the season with point guard Joel Martinez, ‘17, contracting scarlet fever and guard Damien Boyce, ‘17, injured with a dislocated shoulder. After overcoming setbacks, the team managed to go 8-2 in league play. The Caruthers Blue Raiders defeated the Eagles 55-51 in the third round of playoffs.
The girls basketball team improved from last season with many of the team’s underclassmen returning to play again. The girls went 7-20 overall and 4-6 in league play.
Heavy rains cut the soccer season short for campus soccer teams. The varsity boy’s soccer team struggled with limited practice time and the weather. The Eagles went 1-7 in league play and 3-10-1 overall.
Under new coach, Marguerite Belanger, the varsity girl’s soccer team improved their record and bonded as a team. The girls went 3-6 in league play and 5-8-1 overall.
The Eagles baseball team endured an eight-game losing streak which ended with a playoff victory over the Orosi Cardinals. The Eagles continued their win streak to the championship game, facing the Sierra Chieftains. The Eagles triumphed over the Chieftains, winning, 5-3, claiming the Valley championship. Despite their season ending success, the Eagles went 12-17 overall and 2-7 in league play. The championship victory is the first baseball Valley championship in Fresno Christian history.
Varsity softball struggled to win games, but nonetheless grew in their abilities. Their overall record was 1-21 and 0-10 in league.
In the third year of competition, the competitive and game cheer team placed 1st in the Clovis Pep Classic, 3rd in the CIF competition, and 1st in the Clovis West Showcase.
The golf team struggled to compete against larger schools and training new, inexperienced players joining with team. Through hard work and perseverance, many of the golfers were successful, with senior Michael Cliff, winning his fourth consecutive individual championship. Golf coach Jeff Hopper announced his coaching retirement and would not return after the season.
Undefeated in league, the boy’s tennis team went 12-0 in league, winning the championship, and 15-2 in their overall season. The team struggled with non-league opponents.
Homecoming took place on Oct. 7, 2016, with the theme “FC Turns Back Time.” Leadership had students participate in games throughout the week to earn points for their class. In the end, the juniors 50s themed float helped them win the competition. Phillip Christopher, ‘17, and Hannah Nale, ‘17, won homecoming king and queen, respectively.
Leadership decided to make Sadies unique by going to four different places rather than one. Students who attended the event in February spent the morning at the Fresno Chaffee Zoo before heading to 2xtreme Jump Arena. The night ended with ice skating after the group had dinner at Yoshino’s Japanese Restaurant.
Class movies returned to the annual Night of the Stars (NOTS) event in April. NOTS was held at the Manor Estate in Madera with a theme of “Down in New Orleans”. The senior class’ movie (a parody of The Hunger Games) took home best picture, however the freshmen surprised many and took home several awards for themselves.
The Bible department was headed Don Rojeski who taught Christian Living Two and New Testament survey. English was taught by Andrea Donaghe and Kyle Dodson. Donaghe taught English 10 and 12 as well as AP language and composition. Dodson taught English 9 and 11.
The math department was split among several teachers Katie Reneau who taught Junior high. Kristina Breshears who taught Junior high as well as high school Algebra 2. Angie Counts who taught Math 2 and 3. Last but not least of the math teacher’s, AP calculus was taught by Scott Bucher.
New teacher, Kimberly Bell took over home economics, from long time teacher Sharon Scharf. The music department got a new assistant director of music, Dakota Simpson. The science department was taught by Dr. Karen Walters, who taught life based sciences and Bucher who taught physical sciences.
The Feather began the year with several new staff members, many of whom were photojournalist, after losing many seniors the previous year. Advisers Greg Stobbe and Kori Friesen spent the first several weeks of school training the new staffers.
Editor-in-Chiefs Jennifer King and Phillip Christopher, along with the rest of The Feather staff, were honored with a Gold Digital News Crown from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association during the 93rd CSPA Spring Convention at Columbia University, March 17.
Several staff members, along with Stobbe and Friesen, traveled to New York City to receive the award. Feather staff members also had the opportunity to teach several classes while at Columbia University, each intended to help other student newspapers.
For another recap article, read about the 2015-16 FC school year.Follow The Feather via Twitter @thefeather, Instagram @thefeatheronline and Facebook @thefeatheronline.