The Orange and Black

Martinsburg High School 2022 September Issue

Martinsburg High School Presents "A Night In Neverland" Homecoming

By: Savannah Malatt

Martinsburg High School 2022 Homecoming is around the corner. Lots of new changes and additions have been implemented into homecoming this year. Changes from venue, homecoming theme, price of tickets, spirit week themes, food options, Powderpuff football, and pep rally are all brand new! The Martinsburg High Student Council has been preparing for weeks for a dream-like homecoming… “A Night in Neverland”! MHS 2022 Homecoming will be full of unforgettable memories and fun activities!

MHS Homecoming will be held on September 24th from 7pm to 10pm. The event will be located at Airborne Church. The address is 172 Creative Place, Martinsburg, WV 25401. Airborne Church was the location for prom last year. Student Council will be decorating Airborne Church with the homecoming theme, “A Night in Neverland” in mind. Starting Friday 9/16 through Friday 9/23 all MHS students will be able to buy their tickets online on the Martinsburg High School homepage. Tickets will be sold for $20 each. A limited supply of physical souvenir tickets will available at the homecoming dance. Members of Student Council and other volunteers will help set up and tear down for Homecoming. Vice President of Student Council, Senior James Estranas stated, “Student Council breaks up into small groups, homecoming game committee, pep rally committee, decorating committee, spirit week committee. Through these committees, we are able to efficiently plan all the activities for homecoming and celebrations.” The FED UP food truck will be available from 6pm to 9pm. They will have Burgers-$5, Small Fries-$3,Street Corn Tacos-$3 each, Honey Chipotle Fried Brussel Sprouts-$5, and Drinks for $2 each. KONA ICE will also be serving. The first 400 students at the truck get a free kiddie cup of ice. They are also selling $3-$5 cups of ice depending on the sizes. MHS is holding a Powderpuff football event on 9/23, Friday morning before homecoming. See class officers for more info.

A popular tradition for homecoming at MHS is the festive spirit week. The spirit week consists of themes for each day, in which students dress up. The spirit week themes for this year are Monday 9/19- Dress as a teacher, Tuesday 9/20- Bbq dad v.s. Soccer mom, Wednesday 9/21- Biker v.s. Surfer, Thursday 9/22- 2000’s, Friday 9/23- Orange and Black. On the Friday before homecoming dance, there will be the Powderpuff championship game, the pep rally, and the homecoming football game. The Powderpuff championship game will be held the morning of Friday 9/23 and the pep rally will be held that afternoon. The pep rally consists of games the students participate in for each grade. The games are dizzy bat, tug of war, musical chairs, noodle tag, water balloon toss, and potato sack race. At the beginning of the pep rally, all varsity fall sports will be introduced and recognized. The homecoming game is home against Hedgesville, during half time they will be introducing the 2022 homecoming court. The senior court for the girls is Mariah Bispo, Honey Carter, Betsy Cushwa, Amy Flores, and Grace Gladwell. The boys for senior court are Ezra Bagent, Timothy Betts, Avion Blackwood, James Estranas, and Kamden Shallis. The Junior prince and princess are Murphy Clement and Jada Gilmore. The Sophomore prince and princess are Koi Fagan and Trinity Weatherholtz. Last but not least, Freshman prince and princess are Nicolas Barret and Cheyenne Miller.

Martinsburg High School 2022 Homecoming will be a night to remember! New changes and additions to homecoming will create new experiences for all grade levels. Lots of volunteers are working hard to make homecoming possible. All these fun activities will be open to anyone that wants to participate. Don’t miss out on your opportunity to make memories with your friends and peers! For more information on these fun events, contact your class officers or Mrs. Foreman.

Martinsburg High School Band Goes Full Circle

By: Ruth Amoreno

The Martinsburg High School band is entering its 43rd Band Spectacular. The Band Spectacular is a band competition in which local school bands compete in order to fundraise for MHS. There are 10 bands competing in this year’s Band Spectacular. The bands competing are as follows MHS, Hedgesville High School, Spring Mills High School, Warren County High School, Clark County High School, Garrett Liberty High School, Musselman High School, Washington High School, and Shepherd University.

The MHS band’s competition show collection of songs, is titled Full Circle: Keeping Tradition Alive. The songs in this collection are "Birdland,” “ Summertime,” “Hey Jude,” and “Simple Gifts.” These songs are a tribute to the former band director John Lynch. Mr. Lynch was Ms. Adams director and mentor here at MHS. So, “this show is the most important and biggest accomplishment of my career thus far," Mrs. Adams. You can see the band perform this arrangement at Martinsburg High’s Cobourn Field on Saturday, September 24th at 12pm.

All the songs in this collection represent a piece of John Lynch’s life. “Birdland” the MHS band’s opener is actually the opener John Lynch directed with the MHS band in 1981, his first year teaching here at MHS. “Summertime,” the solo Andrew Cottam is playing in the song was the solo that Lynch played in his final performance as band director in 2004. “Hey Jude” was one of Lynch’s favorite songs to play with the Jazz Band during the time he was band director, and the shows closer “Simple Gifts” shows his school spirit for West Virginia University. Abby Wajtowicz, a band member of the MHS band is excited for the band spectacular because, "It’s my senior year and I want to make the most out of it."

There is a ten dollar admission fee for adults, a five dollar admission fee for students and those 65 and older, and entrance is free for kids five years old and younger.“It is a great way to support the arts and is a large fundraiser for the band", according to Mrs. Adams. Also, prior to the Band Spectacular there will be a 5K run as a fundraiser for the MHS Band as well. Registration for the race ends at 8:45am that day. So, lets all go out and support the band and give them the recognition they deserve for all their hard work on this fantastic tribute.

New MHS Drum Majors Feature Double Trouble Plus One!

By: Mackenzie Carper

For the first time in over a decade, Martinsburg Bulldog Band introduces all female drum majors. Mrs. Adams appointed Betsy Cushwa, Millie Cushwa, and Kayla Benedit to take charge and lead this year's 2022-2023 band season. In order to be a drum major you need to be determined and ready for the obstacles thrown at you, all agreed on having the responsibility of being a leader as everyone looks up to you conducting during performances. Also agreeing on the need to have the communication skills to be able to direct the band in an orderly manner, but also to communicate with the other drum majors as well. You need to have the confidence, Mrs. Adams states, “It takes a lot of people skills. When I was a drum major in college you need to know what’s going on as everyone in that collegiate level know what they are doing, and you need to know what you’re doing.” When asked what they were most excited for with the upcoming season Betsy said, “most looking forward to the competition season.” Millie said that she is “Honestly looking forward to the football games, I just like them”. Kayla said “going on trips” including bus rides, and just being with the group. Mrs. Adams stated, “I am most looking forward to the theme, I’m really excited with where the theme is going." When asking the Cushwa sisters what it was like being a drum major with their twin sister, Betsy said, “Sometimes it’s annoying because Millie won't listen to me.” “I think it's nice working with Betsy. It’s also nice because we can be very honest and not have to worry about hurting the other's feelings and we can be brutally honest,” Millie says. MHS can all agree that we are excited for the upcoming season and for what the Martinsburg Bulldog band has in store.
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MHS 2022 Band Drum Majors and Band Director- Millie Cushwa, Mrs. Adams, Betsy Cushwa, and Kayla Benedit!

MHS Fall Sports' Teams Are Ready To Compete!

By: Valerie Clabaugh

Martinsburg High School holds a well-known reputation for all athletics. The MHS fall sports season has begun and they are ready to compete! Martinsburg High offers a variety of different fall sports, including football, volleyball, girls' soccer, boys' soccer, cross-country, golf, and cheer. Many of these athletes have been preparing since the summer and have many goals for their new season.

The Martinsburg High School's football team is known for their talent and winning streaks. They have been conditioning all summer in preparation for their 2022 season. MHS Senior and Linebacker, Kam Shallis, gave some insight into their plans and strengths for this season. He stated, “I am looking forward to our season. I feel as if we have a talented group of athletes; that are going to do great things.” The MHS football team has also been working all their preseason on their ability to work together and expand their skills. Shallis also stated, “Personally, I am working on playing a bigger role on our offense. I am also excited to go out and play with my friends each week.”

The Martinsburg High School volleyball team has also been successful, throughout the years. Varsity team captain and outside position player, Senior Emonie Fenell, has reached out to give more information on their season. She foreshadows another successful season for the Lady Bulldogs. Fenell stated, “I think we will play really well; our team’s chemistry is great. I would like to see how the season goes.” These athletes have been focusing on both their individual and team improvement. Fenell stated,” I am working on deducting my unforced errors and keeping my team motivated. As a team we are working to improve our energy and communication on the court." Most of the players agreed they are looking forward to sectionals, and to seeing their improvements pay off.

Martinsburg High offers both girls' and boys' soccer. Both teams have been improving since the summer and continue to work hard towards their goals. Varsity girl’s captain and Stopper, Senior Chloe Thomas, stated, “I am confident we can pick up from where we left off last year, with only room for improvement. A lot of new talent has come and changed our game play.” Boys Varsity captain and right wingback player, Senior Andrew Fisher, had similar aspirations and stated, “Our season is going well so far, we are executing our attack plans, and our defense is getting better every day.” Both teams are working on their improvement by moving the ball, as well as making shots. Thomas stated, “I am most excited for senior night or to win a state championship.” Fisher also stated, “I am excited to see our improvements up till playoffs, then to states.”

The Martinsburg High cross-country team is back in action for their 2022 season. These athletes are looking forward to their season, especially their big Pittsburg meet. Varsity captain and senior, Betsy Cushwa, has some high expectations for her team. She stated, “I think we have a really great season ahead, because we have a large group of strong runners.” She also stated some improvements, “Our team is trying to get better at racing in a pack to break up other teams.” The MHS cross-country team hopes to all qualify for states and win regionals. Cushwa personally stated, “I am working on improving my times and being consistent in races.”

Martinsburg High is also home to our MHS Golf team. Their season started during the summer and progresses till October. They have had a successful season so far and continue to use their skills and dedication. Varsity captain and senior, Nathan Dailey, stated,” We are on track to make it to states this year. We are doing extremely well as a team and have all improved.” As a team all the athletes are working on expanding their skills and play. Dailey stated, “Individually, I am trying to focus on consistency and score improvement.” The MHS Golf team is excited to make an appearance at states this year.

The Martinsburg High school cheer team has accomplished many things, as well as keeping a busy schedule. The cheer team cheers year around at different events, such as football and basketball games. They also compete at cheer competitions, against other cheer teams. They practice as a team 7 days a week, which adds up to 18 hours of challenging work. Varsity captain and main base, Senior KeNiya Basey, stated, “I think this season will go better than last years, I think we will make it to states!” As a team they are working on consistency, to the point of perfection. Basey also stated, “I personally am working hard on tumbling and skills for college. I am most excited to compete but also sad because it will be my last time!” The schedule for the 2022 cheer season: all football games.

Martinsburg High is home to many talented sports teams. All these athletes have been working extremely hard for good seasons. Their hard work and dedication to sports gives Martinsburg its pristine reputation. The fall seasons are still in action and will continue to compete until October. For more information on games, visit the Martinsburg High School website, or MHS athletics Facebook page.

Lunch Time Crunch!

By: Ruby Amores

As you might have noticed, this year we have a new lunch schedule and many students have been wondering why.

Last year students and teachers had a plentiful forty-five minutes for their lunch break, and this year they only have thirty. Though fifteen minutes seems like a short amount of time, it can make all the difference when it comes to those lunch lines. Senior Daija Wright comments “you’re waiting in the lunch line and you’ve already missed half your lunch.”

We interviewed the kitchen staff to get an inside point of view on the why the lunch schedule changed and what the future of the lunch schedule could look like. Ms Sarah Bass, the Head Cook shared with us that this was actually the original lunch schedule here at MHS. Staff member of over 22 years, Ms Holly Roberts, states “Last year was the longest lunch I’ve ever seen.” Overall, the kitchen staff prefers the shorter lunches because they are given an increased amount of time between to clean up and set up for the next lunch. With the time between breakfast, lunch and between lunches kitchen staff also have opportunities to take their, well deserved, breaks.

This year the faculty has placed an emphasis on getting “Back to the Basics” in an effort to bring school back to a simpler time, pre-pandemic. “We noticed that with the additional time, students were given more time to get themselves into bad situations and cause problems,”according to Mr Burkhart, US History teacher. Kitchen staff and other MHS faculty note that the extended lunches allowed for students an ample amount of time to eat their lunch and mess around. However, staff also recognize that some students get stressed with the shorter lunches. Ms Roberts notices that students get stressed with the shorter amount of time to eat. “If it runs smoothly y'all get to eat and get out in time, and I feel good because that’s what we are here for,” said Ms Roberts.

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) “students should have at least twenty minutes once they are seated to enjoy their meal and socialize.” They use the term “seat time” in reference to the amount of time students have to eat their meals, not including time spent waiting in line. The West Virginia Board of Education (WVBE) policy states that students should be given a minimum of ten minutes for breakfast and twenty minutes of seat time for lunch.

There have been several studies done regarding proper lunch schedules for public schools. “Starved by the Bell” an article written by Cindy Jung, in the Harvard Political Review, indicates that shorter meal times can force students to eat too quickly and overload the stomach. Eating too fast can prohibit one from feeling full, linking to obesity and malnutrition. “The toll is especially heavy for students from low-income communities who rely on school meals for 50% of their daily calorie intake.” Longer lunches can lead to an increase in consumption and nutrition, plus decreased waste.

Our kitchen staff is working hard to keep the students happy. This year they implemented a third lunch line known as the “My Way Cafe” where students can choose from a themed variety of foods, such as build your own pasta bar. Ms Alicia Dunham, kitchen staff, states that starting soon they’ll be putting stickers on the breakfast bags and lunch trays with questions on them about nutrition trivia. Students can participate by bringing them to the lunch staff and answering them for a prize!

Lunches may be shorter this year, but our faculty and staff are doing their best to keep students happy and fed. “We’ve had half an hour lunches before, we can do it again” said Mr Burkhart.

MHS Welcomes Over 20 New Teachers!

By: Phoebe Porter

Martinsburg High School is excited to welcome over 20 new teachers and faculty members to the building for the 2022-2023 school year! We asked some of our new staff members to help us get to know them by answering a few short questions.

Full Name: Jaclyn Myer

Subject: Family & Consumer Sciences: Baking and Pastries

College/University: Shepherd University(2006), Hood College(2018), WVU(2025)

Fun Fact: I’m as happy on my motorcycle as I am in my garden.

Something fun you did over the summer: Went with my family of 7 to the Outer Banks.

Something that you are looking forward to this school year: Being back in a FACS classroom. English just doesn’t hit the same for me as FACS does.

Full Name: Marian Correa

Subject: Spanish

College/University: Shepherd University

Fun Fact: I graduated from college the same year my youngest daughter graduated from high school.

Something fun you did over the summer: Went to the beach twice.

Something that you are looking forward to this school year: Getting to know the students, faculty, and staff at MHS.

Full Name: Erika Fleming

Subject: Baking & Pastries Foundations

College/University: Blue Ridge CTC, Shepherd University

Something fun you did over the summer: Took my son to college football camps.

Something that you are looking forward to this school year: I am looking forward to teaching something new and helping the bakery program at MHS continue to grow.

Full Name: Caitlyn Priddy

Subject: Math

College/University: Shepherd University

Fun Fact: I graduated from MHS!

Something fun you did over the summer: I bought a house and moved back to WV.

Something that you are looking forward to this school year: I am looking forward to watching students grow their knowledge of math as well as their knowledge of themselves and the world around them. It's my favorite part of every school year.

Full Name: Kaden Stenger

Subject: Math

College/University: University of Pennsylvania

Something fun you did over the summer: I spent 40 days traveling to 8 different locations!
Something that you are looking forward to this school year: Having an excuse to wear my graduation robe again.

Full Name: Joseph Famiglietti

Subject: History

College/University: WVU

Fun Fact: I have been to 39 states and 13 countries.

Something fun you did over the summer: Went to the beach.

Something that you are looking forward to this school year: Building relationships with my students at the beginning of the year rather than coming in during the middle of the year.

Full Name: Rachael Jenkins/Blackford

Subject: Computer Technology

College/University: Shepherd University

Fun Fact: I do not eat pork or beef and my husband is a chef.

Something fun you did over the summer: Traveled south to take my kids to Alligator Adventure and the beach.

Something you are looking forward to this school year: Teaching design and getting the printer working!

Full Name: Emily Robinson

Subject: English

College/University: Shepherd University

Fun Fact: I have a pig named Beatrice.

Something fun you did over the summer: I got engaged!

Something you are looking forward to this school year: Being with the same students all year- I’m used to being a sub.

Full Name: Vicky Bullett

Subject: Grad Point (Interventionist) CTE Dept.

College/University: University of Maryland College Park

Fun Fact: At 6’3 I’m the shortest of 6 brothers who all attended MHS.

Something fun you did over the summer: Working with the members at the Boys and Girls Club of the Eastern Panhandle.

Something you are looking forward to this school year: Attending the girls basketball games.

Full Name: Louise Federico

Subject: Co-teacher for English and Algebra I

College/University: Virginia Tech

Fun Fact: I bowl, and I am President of local bowling association.

Something fun you did over the summer: I got a Sheltie puppy.

Something you are looking forward to this school year: Getting to know and help all of my students.

Full Name: Micah Barton

Subject: Math

College/University: Concord University, Shepherd, Montana Wilderness School of the Bible

Fun Fact: I have a disability known as scorching foot syndrome which is why you only see me in flip flops.

Something fun you did over the summer: Got married to a beautiful woman, who doesn’t mind my scorching foot syndrome.

Something you are looking forward to this school year: Teaching Spanish.

Full Name: Roger Hamood

Subject: U.S. History Comp.

College/University: West Virginia University, Coastal Carolina University, Shepherd University

Fun Fact: I like to hunt, fish, camp- anything outdoors, shooting pool, and music.

Something fun you did over the summer: Didn’t get to do a lot- summer was too short!

Something you are looking forward to this school year: Getting to know all my students.

Full Name: Magdelyn Kelly

Subject: Theatre

College/University: Rowan University

Fun Fact: I threw up on Keith Urban’s shoes at the age of 18.

Something fun you did over the summer: I spent a TON of time working to make my very first classroom a comfy and safe learning environment for my students.

Something you are looking forward to this school year: I’m looking forward to our awesome show season! Come support the theatre department!

Full Name: Courtney Furgason

Subject: Health Education

College/University: Fairmont State University/Florida Atlantic University

Fun Fact: Inducted into Fairmont State’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 2005 for volleyball.

Something fun you did over the summer: Moved from Charleston, WV to Martinsburg.

Something you are looking forward to this school year: Supporting all of my students in their extracurricular activities. Let’s go bulldogs!!

Full Name: Ashley Witmer

Subject: Multi-Cat

College/University: American Public University, Southern New Hampshire University

Fun Fact: I’ve written and published 2 romance novels!

Something fun you did over the summer: Went to Tulepo, MS where Elvis Presley was born.

Something you are looking forward to this school year: Meeting all my new students!

Full Name: Larry Garman

Subject: Math

Full Name: Faith Kirschling

Subject: English

College/University: Shepherd University/Shenandoah Conservatory

Fun Fact: I’m a trumpet player.

Something fun you did over the summer: Performed with the Hagerstown Municipal Band.

Something you are looking forward to this school year: Reading The Great Gatsby.

Full Name: Hayley Cowan

Subject: Choir

Full Name: Micheal Riley

Subject: Multi-Cat


Full Name: Walter Hojka

Subject: Orchestra

College/University: Illinois Wesleyan University, West Virginia University, Illinois Institute of Technology

Fun Fact: Worked on a Mississippi River steamboat.

Something fun you did over the summer: Saw the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra in Berlin.
Something you are looking forward to this school year: Great musical experiences with students.

The Future Of MHS Fine Arts!

By: Bella Walsh

Martinsburg High School is excited to welcome two new fine arts teachers, Ms. Kelly, who is our new theatre teacher, and Ms. Cowan, who is our new choir/show choir director to our school! We were honored to talk and get to know both of them and see what their plans are for the upcoming year!

After talking with Ms. Kelly, we learned that she is a graduate from Rowan University in Glassboro, NJ. We were eager to know if she had previous experience! “While I've been lucky to lead many workshops with local high schools, this is my very first year as a teacher! I'm loving every minute of it!”, said Ms. Kelly. We then asked what Ms. Kelly's plans are for the upcoming year. Her response was “I am thrilled to be spending so much time in our theatre department this year! With so many shows and competitions coming up, I'll be working hard to ensure that my students have a fantastic season of art. In my classes, I'm excited to see the projects that come from my Stagecraft course and would love to help all my seniors continue to build their portfolios! Most of all, I plan to learn and grow as an educator!” Thank you Ms. Kelly! We hope you have a fantastic year!

Next, we talked with Ms. Cowan! We asked her a series of questions including what college she attended, if she has any previous experience, how she wants to make the program more her style, and what her biggest goal for the year is. Ms. Cowan informed us that she is a graduate of Ohio University in Athens, OH! “This program is already very close to what my style is like.” said Ms. Cowan. “These kids are self-motivated, hardworking, and ready to learn. I strive to bring up students that are self-sufficient, help one another, and try their hardest every day. I can only see this program going up! The students are here to play and to learn, which in turn makes me inspired to teach. My goal for the program is to build back the larger number of students in non-show choir classes. Show Choir seems to always have many interests. I do believe though, that show choir, and regular choir, fundamentals all begin in those chamber and concert choirs. I would love to see these numbers grow over the next few years.” “My show choir experience began when I was in high school. Being a part of a small competitive show choir, I had the chance to travel across Ohio to various competitions. A competition in Cleveland, OH at Walsh Jesuit High School is when I first saw Good Times. Even with GT being my group’s competition at the time, I was in awe of the talent and skill level that the group possessed. Since high school, I’ve worked with multiple show choirs- one being Sheridan Northern Stars. This is also a group that Good Times has competed against. Throughout college I worked with many different types of choirs and age groups. It’s an honor and privilege to now be the director of Good Times and Glitz after so many years of watching from the outside. This is going to be a great year!!” We were excited to hear Ms. Cowans goals for this year. “For the show choirs- The obvious answer would be to do very well during competition season. While that is an added bonus, my ultimate goal for this year is to share my passion of show choir with my students. There are few things in life that bring me greater joy than show choir. I love the environment, the people, the process, everything! I absolutely love it when I catch my students developing that same energy and passion. This group is very hard working, determined, and self-motivated. There is no doubt in my mind that they will achieve great things this year, all while spreading great music!”

“For the choirs- My biggest goal for Choraliers, Chamber Choir, and Concert Choir is to help my students reach their full musical potentials. There is a lot of talent and passion in the Choral Department. I aim to guide my students in the right direction of obtaining their goals and to assist them in seeing their growth. We recorded what each choir sounded like on the first day of class, and I am eager to hear their growth in May!” Thank you, Ms. Cowan, we hope you have a great year!

MHS Gets An Update!

By: Aden Reid

To start off this 2022-2023 school year all Martinsburg High School students received a 9th generation iPad. Our school was one of very few to get these iPads on a pilot program. This replaced their Chromebooks that they've been using for the past few years. Thanks to MHS’s tech specialist Ms.Kissner, the change has gone very smoothly.

The other schools that got iPads were South Middle School and Musselman Middle School. According to Ms.Kissner we were chosen because “in part our administration was willing.” She said that the benefit “Administration was most interested in was the ability of students to create with the iPads. Touch screens, a camera, and apps allow students to show learning in more creative ways.” Ms.Kissner thinks “iPads will allow teachers to share items with students and keep them together as a class.” After working with both the Google Chromebooks and the Apple iPads she said “IPads are easier and quicker to do most actions and have a quick start up time.”

MHS Junior Murphy Clement agrees, “I like the iPads more. If you accidentally press the lock key it only closes it instead of turning it completely off.” But there is also a downside “It does not look heavier but the chromebook was much easier to carry.” Although there’s a lot you can do with the iPads there are also a lot of rules that come with them. A mandate from the county told to me by Ms.Kissner states to “not place stickers or screen protectors on the iPads so not to cover up identifying stickers or leave adhesive behind on the screen.” They also require students to use the iPad case given to them and not their own. “It was bought specifically for how they protect them and for its keyboard.” But incase of any accidental damage they have Apple care to cover any breakages.

This 9th gen iPad was introduced in 2021 with a battery life of 10 hours, 64GB of storage, and a weight of 1.07 pounds, not including the case with the keyboard. With these new devices to advance students' learning, this school year might go more smoothly than year's past.

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Ms. Kissner with a brand new iPad!

Just Another Backyard Brawl

By: Jason Bednarski

Since 1895, The University of Pittsburgh, and West Virginia University have clashed in the Backyard Brawl. After that first game there have been another 104 games played and coached by 33 WVU and 34 Pitt coaches. Also the tensions between the teams started in that first game because when a Pitt Player John Rugh caught a punt behind the goal and WVU argued it was a touchdown, Pitt said it was a touchback, the referee’s ruled it a safety making the score 6-0 and then both teams eventually made the score 8-0. Now with the 105th meeting where Pitt won, the win-loss record improved to 62-40-3 with Pitt leading.

This rivalry is well-known because it was the first game to be broadcast on the radio in 1921, and, because of the chant the WVU fans say during the playing of Pitt’s theme song "Sweet Caroline". It is a rivalry that involves a lot of anger as well. According to the voice of the Mountaineers on the radio, Jack Fleming, as he recounts how he learned to hate Pitt, “my mom pointed down at the field and said, ‘That’s Pitt. You hate Pitt now. You hate Pitt tomorrow. You hate Pitt until you die. After that, you will hate Pitt for eternity.’” The 2007 Backyard Brawl is what inflamed anger between the teams, because coming into the game WVU fans believed that they could have contended for a National Championship against Missouri. But in the end Pitt won 13-9, because their defense was able to stop WVU’s offense led by Pat White and Lesean Mccoy. The game was won by Pitt’s kicker Conner Lee, who kicked two field goals to lead Pitt to victory. There have been plenty of good games for WVU as well. According to Mr. Burkhart, a Social Studies Teacher at Martinsburg High School and a WVU fan, “My favorite one, I was at had to be in 2009 when Pitt was 9th in the country and we took them down. It was an awesome game to be at.” The most recent game was Thursday September 1st which was the first game between both teams in 11 years since the game they played in 2011, which was the last game because the Big East broke up. The Backyard Brawl on Thursday was another historic game because WVU and Pitt fans totalled 70,622 fans in attendance at Acrisure Stadium which broke the attendance record held previously by Pitt and Penn State.

In this game WVU was the first team to score a touchdown, and then both teams were scoring until the fourth quarter when the game, was tied at 31-31 and when WVU was driving down the field to win the game the ball slipped through the hands of the receiver and Pitt got a Pick-Six to go up 38-31. So with a last ditch effort WVU tried to tie the game up to go into overtime. Then as WVU was driving down the field they had to convert a 4th down, but the catch was ruled incomplete and Pitt won the 105th Backyard Brawl. According to Mr. Burkhart, the game lived up to the games in the past, “ It sure did! Great rivalries never get old, the passion is always there, even if it’s been 11 years since the last time we played I still got the same emotions running through me like the last time we played them. The fact that the game broke attendance records on the same field the Steelers play on shows you how passionate this rivalry is.” The Backyard Brawl isn’t going away because WVU and Pitt have a 4 game contract that began with this game.

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2022-2023 MHS Newspaper Staff

Jason Bednarski, Aden Reid, Phoebe Porter, Advisor- Ms. Foreman, Editor- Valerie Clabaugh, Mackenzie Carper, Ruby Amores, Ruth Amoreno. Not pictured are Isabella Walsh and Savannah Malatt.