Eye of the Tiger

OJH School Newspaper October 2019 Issue

OJH Newspaper

The OJH newspaper, Eye of the Tiger, is created by the newspaper staff. It is published at least four times a year. The paper's demographic is both students and parents. Articles are written and edited by the staff of 8th and 9th grade students with a faculty adviser.
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Carli Colvin (9), Eli Acker (9) and Shelby Bivens (8) proudly display their Tik Tok profiles while smiling. These students will continue to post Tik Toks, even after they’ve gotten famous. “I just did it for fun, I didn’t expect for it to get a lot of likes on my video,” said Acker.

Tik Tok: A Way for Students to Express Themselves

By: Kenzie Denney

In today’s society, it is sometimes difficult to voice an opinion or show a unique style because most students fear being judged. This pushes students to seek out new ways to express themselves freely. Three students have found a way to do that through social media.

Tik Tok is a social media platform where anyone can make original, comedy or lip-sync videos. This app is different from Youtube in that the videos range from 15-60 seconds long. This app allows even the most introverted people to express themselves through different types of videos. Which is what one freshman student Carli Colvin did.

“I saw a bunch of other hairstyle videos that had got a lot of likes and thought, ‘I kind of want to try this’. So I made the video, and the next thing I knew I was famous,” stated Carli.

Carli’s original posted video was of her styling her hair in several different ways. The 15 second video got 1.5 million views and 228.9 thousand likes, which is what kick started her Tik Tok career.

“I was shocked when I started getting more and more likes on my video,” said Carli. “I was really excited because I didn’t expect for my video to actually blow up; it just kind of happened. I was super happy to know that doing something I considered fun was a way for me to show who I was. ”

Although Tik Tok provides a way for introverted people like Carli to express themselves, it also allows extroverted people like freshman Eli Acker to find new ways to let their voices be heard.

“If I have an opinion or idea on something, Tik Tok is a place where I can do that. It also allows me to harness my creativity in the form of a video,” said Eli.

Like Carli, Eli was surprised when his video started to go viral. Eli reacted to a video of a girl with a funny laugh. Her laugh sounded like water squeaking, which is where he got the idea to pour water onto the floor and rub it with his shoe. Eli’s video got 35.9 thousand likes and a little over a third of a million views.

“I had just posted the video and then I went out to mow our lawn. While I was mowing, I felt my phone start to buzz continuously. I ignored it for a minute, but it got annoying pretty fast. I looked at my phone and saw the video I posted was at 100 likes. It just continued to gain more likes and views from there,” explained Eli.

When most people post a video to Tik Tok, they hope that their video will make it to the For You page. The For You page is a section on Tik Tok where people can discover new videos and trends that are similar to ones they have liked. Both Eli and Carli can credit their success to the For You page, along with eighth grader Shelby Bivens.

Shelby posted an original video of her making weird faces to the camera in rhythm to the audio she used. Her video has 1.5 million views, and 326.9 thousand likes.

“Tik Tok is a place where I can unleash my creativity. It seems like there are no limits to what I can do. I followed a trend going around where you make your own weird videos. I found an audio I liked and started making a video to it,” described Shelby.

Becoming Tik Tok famous is a big deal to some people. All three of these students didn’t expect their videos to get them famous, they did it because it was a way for them to express themselves.

“ Even though I’ve only had one video blow up, I will still continue to make more videos because it's a way to show my personality. If you want to get famous, don’t worry about what you post and don’t try super hard,” stated Shelby. “When I posted my video, I had originally thought that I was just going to delete it later but it ended up blowing up. The videos I take thirty minutes on usually don’t get many likes compared to the ones that I take five minutes to make.”

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Luke Neely (9) and William Scott (9) focus on their group project. They were working on their budgeting project for Career Opportunities.

The Struggle Is Real for Some in Ninth Grade

By: Hailey Beck

Students sit in their classrooms and hear an extensive lecture from their teachers about how “Next year you will have more expected out of you.” It is a saying students hear every year, yet often the work doesn’t seem to get much harder. That is what the class of 2023 at OJH was expecting to have happen again. However, many ninth graders are having quite a wake up call.

“In eighth grade you are a lot more excited because you know you’re about to start your freshman year, and then once it starts it’s really not what you were expecting,” said ninth grader Mason Hoffman. “Everything is a lot more intense this year especially knowing that this grade is going to follow us into college.”

Hoffman is just one of many students feeling the immense pressure of ninth grade. The homework loads are like nothing they have experienced before.

“I get homework daily,” Hoffman stated. “Back in eighth grade there was homework, but it really didn’t matter.”

Although students are not thrilled about homework, they can not deny the fact that they are learning a lot this school year.

“Our amount of homework has definitely increased, which is a good thing because we are learning more,” said freshman student Reagan Winegar.

Along with more homework students have also been given frequent quizzes.

“We have a lot more quizzes this year to see if we are understanding what we are doing,” Winegar mentioned. “It shows me what I need to study before the test.”

Even though students are receiving more homework and quizzes this year, it is unquestionably helping them to become more educated. Yet, some students still feel like the 9th grade teachers are pushing things onto them faster than they can handle.

“The curriculums are so different, I wish our former teachers would’ve helped build a better foundation for us, instead it feels like we are just having things thrown at us,” voiced Winegar. “English for example is a lot more strict on how you write, you have to know all of the traits of writing and how to use them perfectly it seems like.”

Mrs. Jones, eighth grade English teacher, explained that students who take Honors English over general English are definitely going to feel a more intense workload.

“In 8th grade, students don’t have the honors option. Our hope is to prepare all students for success. With constant changes in education, there are sure to be educational gaps for students. Last year, we worked closely with the 9th grade ELA Department to make sure our standards were aligned.” Mrs. Jones also explained that both eighth and ninth grade are currently working on incorporating a common writing rubric called the 6+1 Traits of Writing. The goal is for all students to know the same vocabulary when it comes to writing.

So listen up eighth graders, avoid the harsh reality of ninth grade homework and quizzes and do what is needed this year to prepare for it.

Ozark’s Hidden Soldier

People may think of soldiers as military men or famous superheroes. However, a soldier doesn’t have to wear a uniform or a cape.

By: Kately Sutherland

There are many things humans can’t live without. Though it may seem like a person couldn’t survive without objects such as cell phones or TV’s, some people are struggling today to live without a body working properly. In fact, a teacher at Ozark Junior High is living in kidney failure and has high hopes for her upcoming kidney transplant.

Since last April, Christina Elsenraat has had her world turned upside down. Right before Easter of last school year, she was diagnosed with Polycystic Kidney Disease, which causes small pockets of tissue or cysts to appear on her kidneys and severely decreases the function of them. “I felt fine, and it came as a bit of a shock to me. That’s when I was basically told I needed emergency surgery.”

While already a full time wife, mother, and eighth grade ELA and math teacher, Mrs. Elsenraat is also going through dialysis-- a process to rid her body of toxins in substitute for a working kidney. She said she is on what’s called peritoneal dialysis. “This is where you have a catheter (a small tube) hooked to your stomach and use fluid to clear the toxins. I use what’s called a cycler which is a machine that does the dialysis for me at night. I hook it to my catheter in my stomach and it runs while I’m sleeping,” Elsenraat said. “Basically, the cycler is doing what my kidneys can’t do.”

“Dialysis is giving me stamina right now to get through those crazy long days,” Elsenraat said, although many people offer loads of support through this process. She also said that a lot of the junior high staff even volunteered to get tested to donate one of their kidneys, though all were denied due to the very strict criteria for a donor. “The students also have been wonderful, asking how I am and wanting to know more about what I’m going through,” She said, “Honestly, I couldn’t ask for anything better.”

Through all of her long days, Mrs. Elsenraat is especially influenced by positive and uplifting comments given to her by friends and family.

Her mother particularly stands out in her mind as a role model to look up to, as her mother also went through dialysis and a kidney transplant in 2005. “I’m especially influenced by anything my mom says to me,” she said. “Just watching her go through all of these same things has helped me so much. It makes me think, ‘Well my mom can do it, so I can too.’”

Anytime she has needed advice about any of this long journey she says that her Mom has been there to support her. “My mom always tells me that God knows who the right donor is for you. He’s just waiting for the right time to show them to you.”

So, while a teenager’s electronic device might seem like the most essential thing in life, there can always be something more important. Mrs. Elsenraat has found that things like family, friends, and support might seem of little value, but are really far more important than any earthly possessions. “I couldn’t do any of this without the love and support I get from my family and friends.” she says. “All that’s left to do is hurry up and wait.”

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Mrs. Elsenraat co-teaches a lesson to Mrs. Jones’ ELA class. “Mrs. Elsenraat is really kind and helpful in my classes,” said Lilli Honeycutt (8).

New Teachers in the Spotlight

By: Aubree Crawford

At Ozark Junior High School some new teacher faces are visible in the hallways. These new ELA teachers are Mrs. Floyd in the eighth grade English department and Mrs. Bland in ninth grade. Mrs. Floyd previously taught 7th grade at Ozark Middle School and Mrs. Bland came from Carver Middle School located in Springfield.

Mrs. Floyd said she loves getting to know students on a personal level through ELA and using ELA to make connections to their lives. She taught for four years at the middle school. “I actually have a lot of the same kids as I did last year, and one thing that I have noticed is the maturity of the kids and taking more ownership of their learning,” said Mrs. Floyd. Mrs. Floyd thinks that the elective classes and clubs that students are involved in are quite different from the middle school.

One thing that is unique about Mrs. Floyd coming to Ozark Junior High is she gets to work at the same school as her husband. “I greatly enjoy working in the same building as my husband. We enjoy collaborating about school and bouncing ideas off one another so it works out perfectly. This is the third school that we have worked in the same building as one another so it's definitely something that works well for us,” said Mrs. Floyd. Even though they work at the same school, Mrs. Floyd and her husband don’t get to see each other much. Another good thing about working at the same building is that Mrs.Floyd and her husband get to drive to work together and they both have a good understanding of how each other's day goes on a normal basis. Mrs. Floyd said, “I also really enjoy seeing the reaction of former students when they make the connection that they are husband and wife.”

A quarter of a mile down the hall is Mrs. Bland who taught 7th grade reading before Ozark. “The students here at Ozark are a lot more mature and it feels like more of them have their why: they know why they are coming to school, they understand the importance of it, and they want to try to do well,” says Mrs. Bland.

Mrs. Bland loves it when students come and “spill the tea” with her. Mrs. Bland taught at Carver Middle School for one year and before that she had a ten year break to raise her family.

Mrs. Bland has three kids Avery who is 10, Mayleah is 8, and Mariella who is 5. They all go to Ozark South Elementary. “Being a teacher most definitely helps me understand my kids better,” said Mrs. Bland.

Both teachers are enjoying their time at OJH so far and are happy with the move.

2019 School Year Unfolds for OJH Students and Staff

By: Aisling Wilson

August 16th, the first day of school. Nervous, scared, excited and oblivious faces lined the halls at Ozark Junior High. Their backpacks heavy with unopened school supplies ready to be used. Kids looked around for familiar faces and proceeded to make their way towards them. It was the start of a new year for everyone that stepped foot in the Ozark Junior High.

Today, OJH’s students walk around confident in where they’re going. Busy classrooms and crowded hallways are just the start of what happens every day at this school. With over 900 students it can seem difficult to manage and make sure everyone gets what they need individually.

Luckily that’s nothing the staff at Ozark Junior High can’t handle. “Everyone has been working together so well to make the start of school so good,” says Principal Jim Hubbard, “Kids have been making good connections with each other.”

Hundreds of kids in one place isn’t always as fun and interesting as it seems though. Busses and lunches are crazy along with trying to give every student their desired schedule can be extremely hectic. Nevertheless, each day is new and holds something fun for everyone. Speaking of fun activities, Mr. Hubbard also mentioned that the Back to School Bash that was hosted for teachers was a great success.

Lots of staff working together to prepare for this year is always good, “This school year has started off very well. The back to school bash was really good and the overall turnout was amazing,” Mr. Hubbard said.

It’s obvious that Mr. Hubbard is proud of his staff. In a faculty meeting he thanked his staff. “We have 950 plus kids in our building, and I don’t remember a smoother start to a school year.”

At OJH the students are a part of the junior high community. Eighth grader Owen Harris said he prefers the junior high over the middle school (OMS) because he enjoys the new privileges and abilities he gets as an eighth grader. “I like how we only have five block hours. At the middle school we had eight and it was a lot.” He also said that the lunch at OJH is a lot different and there are more options than there were at OMS. “We get more freedom here at the junior high than we did at the middle school.”

For new freshmen, the tables are slightly turned. This is the first year that their grades and records really count and although it can be scary, it motivates them to do well and set a good foundation for a successful future. “I like how we’re all really compacted, it makes it easier to get classes with people you want and it’s easier to get around since we’re in a smaller building,” said freshman student Lilly Corum. She looks forward to not failing her classes this year and enjoying Grace Notes (honors choir).

From homework to wrestling, honors choir, band and soccer, numerous students have their hands full. Many more things are ahead for the year but according to Principal Hubbard and a few students, it’s off to a great start so far.

The Sound of Music in OJH Hallways

By: Ella Counts

Concealed behind two large and vast gray doors is a place where students at OJH can take a break from sitting at their desks and relax by embracing their musical abilities. It’s a place where students can collaborate to create something that is not only pleasing to their ears but also gives them an outlet to express themselves.

This place is the OJH Music Department and as the school year begins, the students are already busy preparing for upcoming concerts and competitions.

For the 160 students in choir this year, the Fall Concert is just around the corner and soon after is Dessert Theatre. With the hustle to learn new music Alicia Campbell, OJH choir teacher, advises her students. “Try to keep up and stay organized.” After all, her goal this year is “To have a basic, non-stressful year” and to “Put on some good, solid concerts.”

The choir will be performing many concerts this year. “It will give all the students performance experience and also audience experience, how to behave and appreciate when you are an audience member.”

Campbell hopes it will give students more self-confidence and alleviate any stage fright issues they might have. “The more you do it, the easier it is to do.”

“I think choir will go well this year; we have a really great group, said Riley Stowers, one of the three elected eighth-grade choir representatives. Choir representatives are students that were elected by the choir kids to represent their class at meetings once a quarter.

However, the choir is only half of the music department. The other side is for students who would rather play an instrument instead of using their vocal cords.

On September 28, the freshman band had the chance to perform in the Sixth Annual Pride of the Ozarks Marching Invitational. “This invitational is a large marching band festival that we host. Although we perform at it, we are not in the competition because we host it,” explained Tom Meyer, 9th-grade band teacher at OJH.

“The festival is great because it raises revenue for the band department and provides a well-run festival for area bands to attend,” Meyer said.

This year 17 bands came in from all over Missouri and Arkansas, and there were between 3000-4000 people in attendance.

“I think the festival went really well, it was super fun and it was the first time I felt like I was a part of the community within the Ozark marching band,” said Aisling Wilson, a member of the freshman band. “I enjoyed working with and meeting all the other bands and just being part of the festival in general.”

“My favorite part was definitely the performance. Although it wasn’t perfect it, we worked hard to put it together and I’m proud of that. There’s always something to make better, but overall I really enjoyed it and I look forward to it next year,” said Wilson.

The 8th-grade band is preparing for their upcoming fall concert.

Whether it’s opening their voice or pulling out their tuba, students at OJH are encouraged to express themselves musically.

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All Hallows Eve

By Eleanor Mathewson

Black cats, jack-o-lanterns, ghouls, and creepy crawlies. All Hallows Eve, or as it is more commonly known, Halloween originated among Samhain nearly 2,000 years ago with the Celts. They lived in what is now Ireland. Samhain is a Celtic festival during which people would wear costumes and light bonfires to ward off ghosts.

While Americans and other countries celebrate Halloween with dressing up in costumes and going door-to-door trick-or-treating, Spain’s variation of Halloween actually lasts three days. The first day is October 31st and known as Dia de las Brujas or Day of the Witches. November 1st is Dia de Todos los Santos or All Saints Day. The last day on November 2nd is Dia de los Muertos meaning Day of the Dead or All Souls Day. Day of the Witches is to honor the 23 women that were sentenced to death during the witchcraft trials. Halloween in Spain is to honor the dead and celebrate the continuity of life.

“I think the concept is really neat how they come together as a family on November 2nd for the remembering of their loved one.” said Sarah Gill, Ozark’s Counseling Secretary, who spent time in Spain. Mrs. Gill also said that in Spain the people there talk about Dia de los Muertos pretty openly.

Mrs. Smith, who teaches Advanced Studies for KITES, has her own creepy chronicles from college. When she was a freshman in college, she was a literacy tutor at a local elementary school and she was driving there for their Halloween party. As she was driving, there were a bunch of kids that had piled into one of the kid’s cars that weren’t paying attention.

Mrs. Smith was driving down the road and the other kids had a stop sign. “They stopped at it so I didn’t think anything about it and I just kept going because they were doing what they were supposed to be doing. Then they decided to go anyway and they crashed into the passenger side door of my boyfriend’s car,” she said.

A year later her Halloween resulted in a fender bender, so for the next five years she would have someone else drive her on Halloween.

Students in Ozark celebrate Halloween in a variety of ways. Some will choose to dress up as their favorite video game characters and go trick-or-treating.

While it may no longer be used to ward off ghosts in ancient Celtic festivals, Halloween is now a time for people to hang decorations, buy lots of candy, and carve pumpkins.

OJH Volleyball Team Serves Up Success

By: Kately Sutherland

The junior high volleyball season is at it’s halfway point, with eighth grade A Team and freshman currently undefeated, and 8th Grade B Team at four wins and one loss.

Although the girls have a winning record, volleyball coach Kyle Laws said that there is still room for improvement. “I don’t believe that we’ve quite played to our potential yet and that we still have a lot of growing to do as well as some things to fix,” Laws said. “That’s kind of how junior high volleyball is. We want to be playing our best at the end of the season when it matters. Eighth grade A Team won the championships last year as seventh graders, so we’re defending champs. That means everyone’s going to be trying to beat us; that’s what everybody wants to do.”

Though someone might say it’s important for a team to win their game, eighth grade player Blair Pace said that she enjoys the social aspect of the sport the most. “The best part of being on the volleyball team is playing the sport I love and hanging out with my friends. It makes the game a lot more fun to play.”

Freshman player Jessie Casteel said she loves making new friends through the sport as well. “I love that the game has gotten a lot more competitive this year, but the best part is definitely bonding with teammates,''Casteel said. “It’s just a fun time to make new friends and enjoy the sport I’m good at.”

Coach Laws also said that Ozark is determined this year to play the best they can play. “Our goals are to continue to improve on our skills and our abilities and hopefully get the opportunity at the end of the season to defend our championship title.”

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Good game! The eighth grade volleyball players show sportsmanship to the opposing team by giving high fives. This was the A Team’s sixth win of the season, bringing their undefeated stats to 6-0.

The OJH Football Teams Are Enjoying a Successful Season

By: Hailey Beck

The eighth grade and ninth grade football teams at OJH are off to a good start. The freshmen have won three of their games: Branson, Willard, and Neosho. However, they lost one game to Nixa.

The eighth grade A-team has a record of 2-1, winning against Willard and Nixa, and losing to Joplin. However, the B-team has won all three games.

“We have a lot of motivation on the team,” said Dawson Gilstrap an eighth grader on A-team. “The coaches have done an amazing job of keeping us going and helping to motivate us.”

The eighth grade coach is pleased with how the season has turned out. “There is a distinct mixture of size and speed which makes our offensive and defensive teams very strong,” said Coach Bodoin.

The ninth graders are also happy with how the season is going. “We have had our ups and downs, but I think we have progressed a lot as a football team,” said Sage Patrick a freshman player.

Freshman Girls Tennis Teams Wrap Up a Winning Season

By: Kenzie Denney

On October 1st, the girls tennis team competed in their last game. Throughout the season, the girls have done well, their overall score coming to 12 wins and two losses.

The girls competed in matches all over the area, playing a total of 14 games. They versed Branson (10-2), Kickapoo (11-3), Webb City (13-3), Nixa (18-12), Springfield (10-5), Neosho (7-1), Rogersville (22-9), Joplin (8-3), Carl Junction (18-3), Springfield Catholic (13-17), Willard (8-2), Glendale (22-10), Carthage (9-1) and Republic (13-14).

The tennis team had been preparing all summer for their matches. They first officially started practice about a week before school started, but had many other practices and camps during the summer.

“We had two weeks before the season started when we had started practicing. We practiced a lot on the types of hits, on serving and just learned how to play the game,” said freshman player Calista Garrison.

Since the team had been working together during the summer and the start of school, all of the players became friends with each other.

“I just like tennis because a lot of my friends do it, and it's a great way to make more friends. It’s also an easy way to hang out with my friends. Tennis is just an enjoyable sport all together,” stated freshman player Leah Morris.

The girls will continue to wrap up the season with an end of season party on October 7th.

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Tristin Cathcart (9) and Leah Morris (9) smile after the ball makes it over the net during a warm up. Cathcart and Morris are doubles partners, which means they play doubles matches together.

An Eventful Swim Season at OJH

By: Aisling Wilson

The Ozark High School boys swim and dive team started strong this fall with several practices and four successful meets.

“Each swim meet I’ve gone to, my time has improved. Our coach says improvement is how you win,” said freshman swimmer Isaac Jenkins. “At our Kansas City meet I made it to finals for a 200 meter free relay.”

The Ozark High School swim and dive team also participates in multiple swim meets across Southwest Missouri which is a good experience for the team. “I look forward to all the out of town meets we have where we stay overnight. We had one in Kansas City that was really fun and several coming up,” said Isaac Jenkins

At the Kansas City meet most members of the team were able to beat their own times but they still have goals to be better. “I’d really like to break a minute on my 100 fly,” said other freshman swim and dive member Graham Eisenman, “I feel really good this year but I think I can do a lot better.”

Two swimmers from OJH and 12 from OHS make up one swim and dive team, the team will have many more practices and meets before the season is over.

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Ozark boys swim and dive team members prepare to dive into the water on September 29th. The meet was successful resulting in better times for multiple members.

JV Boys Soccer Team: On the Road to a Successful Season

By: Ella Counts

So far, JV boys soccer has a season record of four wins, one loss, and two ties. “I think we have had a good start to the season. There are a few games I would like to be able to play again so we could get a different outcome, but overall a good start,” said Zack Owens, JV assistant soccer coach.

“The rest of the season will go by quickly due to the number of games we have coming up and our two tournaments, but I think we will see some success and get some good, quality wins,” Owens said. His team’s first tournament is October 12th and their season ends on October 31.

Nathaniel Bottarel, one of the five freshman soccer players, has nothing but excitement for the upcoming tournaments. “I’m predicting we’re gonna do pretty well because of our team’s chemistry and us working well together. And our coaches really work us hard.”

“My favorite part of being on the team is the community that’s built with everyone. Even though there are a junior varsity and varsity, everyone really gets along together,” Bottarel explains.

With the season’s half-way mark approaching, the team's goal is to “Win as many games as possible, win both tournaments, and get the student-athletes prepared for varsity level soccer in the future.”

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The soccer team huddles together before starting their game. They discuss tactics and pump each other up.

Cross Country is Racing Through the Season

By Eleanor Mathewson

On September 12, 2019, 33 7th and 8th grade boys and 28 girls raced in red at their first meet of the cross country season at Willow Springs. Both girls and boys placed first.

Practices started August 19 with their first meet just three weeks later. The cross country’s team next meet was Lebanon was September 16. Three days later they had another meet at Willard. Eighth grader Maggie Kropf said her favorite part of cross country was “Definitely getting to build relationships with some people and getting to meet new people and of course the running, the running is always really fun.” Head Coach Matthew Lee said, “My favorite part of coaching cross country is the positive atmosphere that everybody exhibits at both meets and at practices.”

So far the junior high season has been successful with the girls placing 1st, 3rd and 4th and the boys placing 1st, 4th and 4th in their first three meets. At their Nixa meet 7th grade girls placed second, 8th grade girls placed fifth, 7th grade boys placed fifth, and 8th grade boys also placed fifth.

Ninth grader, Kopelyn Delong, the only junior high student on the varsity cross country team said “It can be challenging at times since we are doing more miles than last year, but it is a lot of fun and it is a different experience.”

Ninth grader, Jonah Hartgraves is on the JV team.“Being a freshman is pretty difficult because you’ve got the sophomores, juniors, and seniors so you’re really pressured to do really good.”

Boys varsity placed 13th at their SWCCCA meet and 3rd at their Willow Springs meet. They placed 2nd at Lebanon and 5th at Nixa. At Rim Rock they placed 27th. Boys junior varsity placed 11th at SWACCCA and 3rd at Willow Springs. They placed 2nd at Lebanon and 2nd at Nixa. Girls junior varsity does not have any overall placements due to being one girl short. Girls varsity placed 12th at SWACCCA and 2nd at Willow Springs. They placed 3rd at Nixa and 24th at Rim Rock.

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Ozark 7th and 8th grade girls race during the Willard meet. The 8th grade took fourth overall in this meet.

OJH Softball Team Swinging for a Victory

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First baseman, Jobyca Albright stands ready to beat the Rockbridge Wildcats on September 8. Unfortunately, Tigers lost 5-6.

By Aubree Crawford

The OJH girls softball season started on August 30. The season is at a good start for both teams with varsity at 7-8 and junior varsity at 8-3.

The season has been really good even with a new looking roster after six seniors from the team graduated last year. “ We have competed in most every game but we still have room for improvement,” said Coach Nimmo. Coach Nimmo’s goal for the season is to have the team get better on a day to day, game to game basis.

Coach Nimmo said the most rewarding part of being a coach is building relationships with the players and making the team feel like they’re a family. Coach Nimmo hopes that he can continue to build the softball program in Ozark. The softball team is hoping for a 20+ win season.

“The season has been pretty good so far. We have won more than we have lost so that is good,” said Gabby Paladino 9th grade JV player.

The softball season will end October 12.