RHS Fans Unite at Homecoming Game
By Nate Pangaro
Despite the downpour, fans, parents, teachers, and others filled the stands to support the RAMS during the annual Homecoming football game.
Randolph went head-to-head against Sparta in a battle that resulted in a 52-7 loss for the Rams, but even that couldn’t dampen the spirit in the stands.
Holding umbrellas overhead, fans on both sides stood and cheered on their teams and all the players on the field. Since Homecoming was declared “jersey-theme” night, the student sections of the stands were awash in vibrant colors, with students wearing jerseys from their favorite sports teams.
One highlight at halftime was the announcementl of the 2017 Homecoming court. Seniors Nate Pangaro and Makayla Taylor were crowned king and queen. Juniors Anthony Sofiawere and Nicole Nodine were named prince and princess for their class. For the sophomore class, Ethan Powell and Cali Louro won the titles. And for the freshmen, David Joubron was named prince; and, in an unexpected tie, Chloe Whiting and Ilsy Benitez, both won the title of princess. The crowd roared with excitement as the winners shared congratulatory hugs on the field on September 8.
Senior fans were enthusiastic, but some were also wistful. “I had a lot of fun spending time with friends, and am a little taken back at how we're actually seniors and this is our last Homecoming game as RHS students, ” said senior Laura Nolan.
Amanda Crocco, another RHS senior, shared the sentiment. “I had so much fun,” she said, “and I'm sad that it was our last Homecoming game.”
Even though the Rams lost their fierce battle to Sparta, the fans continued to show their enthusiasm, spirit, and support for the team, with packed stands and loud cheering throughout the game.
At one point during the evening a double rainbow appeared, casting a colorful light over both the players on the field and the fans, and sending up yet another rousing cheer from the stands.
RHS Students Learn of the "Power of Positivity"
By Keyonna Murray
Randolph High School students were inspired by the "Power of Positivity" and learned that they should stay motivated and persevere and work to overcome the obstacles they face in life.
Professional speaker, coach, author, and former athlete Cornell Thomas gave the keynote speech at the opening day assembly at Randolph High School on Thursday, September 7. “I never let my doubt stop my do,” Thomas advised RHS students in the packed gymnasium.
Thomas revealed that his single mother raised him and his four siblings, following his father’s death from cancer. He grew up with dreams of becoming a professional basketball player. However, those dreams were dashed when he suffered a career-ending injury only two weeks before he was scheduled to being playing professionally in Portugal.
Ironically, when this setback occurred, Thomas found his true passion: sharing his life story to help and inspire others. Author of the books The Power of Me: Army of One and The Power of Positivity: Controlling Where the Ball Bounces as well as a blog. Thomas now travels the world, aiming to motivate others by expressing the importance of positive thinking, and never giving up no matter what, even when the odds of achievement appear lower than desired.
Backtracking to relay the events of his childhood that brought him to this point, Thomas explained that his “first big problem” occurred when he turned sixteen and developed an interest in playing basketball. “A 6’4” black guy who can’t play basketball in White Meadow Lake doesn’t make sense,” quipped Thomas, who was raised in Virginia. “A 5’8” Korean guy walks onto the court, says, ‘You want me to show you how to shoot that basketball?’ He showed me how to shoot. I still sucked.”
Thomas eventually mastered the skills to land a spot on his school’s junior varsity basketball team, but he spent the majority of his time sitting on the bench, while his teammates played on the court.
Despite his frustration—at both his lack of playing opportunities as well as not having the funds for college—Thomas persevered, with dreams of playing for the NBA one day. “If anyone believes in your dream more than yourself, it’s not going to happen,” he said.
His perseverance eventually paid off when he was offered an opportunity to play professionally in Portugal. Soon after, however, Thomas sustained his career-ending injury. Thomas revealed that he most regretted disappointing his mother, whom he had told would “never have to work another day in her life” should he “make it big” as a professional player.