Senior of the Month: Faythe Harris

By Courtney Jenson

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Senior of the Month Faythe Harris serves during the Tigers’ district volleyball game. Faythe led the league with her hitting percentage.

Faythe Harris made top five in her volleyball league in hitting percentage, kills, and total blocks, leading the Lady Tigers to take third in their league. “I felt good and happy to have a big accomplishment for my volleyball season,” said Faythe.

In the league Faythe is first in hitting percentage with a .449, second in kills with 278, and fourth in blocks with 52.  “ It was my best season not only because of the stats but because I was able to lead my team and because we had the most successful season,” said Faythe.

Many parents and teammates said that Faythe is a team player who showed lots of support and had a lot of enthusiasm as she played.  “Faythe was a leader on and off the court, and she made huge improvements as far as consistency. She was a leader statistically for us and the league,” said Coach Erin Kerr. “She grew as a player mentally, and therefore her physical game benefited from her maturity.”

According to freshman setter Chloe Baker, Faythe was a good team leader because no matter what, she would always try to get people up. Baker admired her because even when she got it wrong, she would say, “I got the next one.”

Faythe lettered all four years of high school in volleyball and her senior year she made All-Conference. Faythe also played in club volleyball team last year and plans on playing in it this year.

After volleyball season was over, Faythe lettered all three years in track as well, and qualified for state in all three years. She made All-State in 2014 and 2015. Last year Faythe got second in the 400 and got State Champion in the Sprint Medley . Faythe plans on going to State again this year in track.

Over the years Faythe has acquired a lot of wisdom. Faythe’s advice to incoming freshmen is: “Focus on time management, and make sure you stay dedicated to your sport but still have time for school and family and friends, because the time will go by.”

As Faythe heads out of high school and into college, she plans to get a degree in physical therapy. One of her choices is to go to Olympic College in Bremerton, Washington, where they have a great Physical Therapy Assistant hands-on course.

“I am going to miss the sense of security. Having my schedule already to go and that my momma is their to take care of me. My friends and doing multiple sports at the same time,” said Faythe Harris.

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Outbound Lady Tigers Leave Team with Words of Encouragement

By Makayla Harris
Four Lady Tigers walked onto their home court for their last time on Tuesday, October 20. Jessica Veeman, Laura Walker, Faythe Harris, and Brienna Baer have been a part of the Wiggins volleyball program for four years.

Veeman has had a varsity jersey ever since her freshman year. As she walked onto her home court for one last time, she said, “Honestly, the first thing I thought about was how I have taken advantage of all the times that I have gotten to walk onto this court, how now I will never be able to get that back or ever be able to experience this again.”

Veeman helped the team with her high serving percentage and consistency in both the back row and the front. According to Veeman, winning her last home game meant a lot not just to her, but to the team. “Four years ago I walked onto that court not thinking that I could accomplish all that I have and my team has,” she said. “Winning the last home game made me realize that I can accomplish anything I set my mind to, and it also proved that we as a team can accomplish anything.”

Being a part of a team these last four years has helped impact Veeman’s future. She said  it has helped her become more confident in herself and has shown her that having the support of others helps you reach goals that you didn’t even know you had set.

One piece of advice that Veeman has for all the underclassmen is to take every opportunity they get, to appreciate all of the little things on their journey through high school, and to make every situation as good as you can. The volleyball program is going to miss Jessica and her positive attitude toward the game next year, according to sophomore Tori Jordan.

According to her stats, Baer has been one of the best defensive players  on the Tiger court for last four years and has helped the team make a comeback. According to Baer, being a part of a team for the last four years has helped her learn valuable social skills, leadership qualities, and competitiveness.

Walking onto her home court for the last time, Baer said, “It was kind of emotional just knowing that I will never play volleyball in this gym again. It’s weird. You don’t think you will miss it, then you’re just like ‘crap, I am going to miss this.’” Winning was the perfect way to say goodbye to the place that has been like a home for the last four years, said Baer.

As Baer gets ready to say goodbye, the last bit of advice she has for the underclassmen is to take it all in and really appreciate all the time they will have, not just to play sports but just to be in high school.

Walker has also been a major part of the Tigers’ success through the years by being one of the best defensively in the league. Walker walked out onto her home court for one last time feeling that, “It was a bittersweet moment. I mean, it was nice to play, but I didn’t know how to feel, knowing that I would never play on this court again.”

Winning her last home game was a dream come true, according to Walker, leaving a legacy that most Wiggins teams have not. Being a part of a successful team impacted her future  because it has given her “a new look on life by how I treat and speak with others that I have to work with.”

As Walker walks off the court for one last time, the piece of advice that she has for the underclassmen is, “Don’t take for granted every game you play in. It may not be in your favor, but you are going to want to do your best no matter what.”

Harris has been the captain of the volleyball team for two years and has been in the top ranks of the league for kills and blocks for the last three years. Harris is a major part of the Lady Tigers’ success, according to Jordan. Harris she said as she walked onto her home court for her last time, she was mainly focused on the challenge of what was set in front of her.

“Being a part of this team has impacted me in a way that is has shown me great leadership skills and has given me memories that I will never forget,” said Harris. Winning the last game that she will play in on her own her was a good feeling, she said: “Any win feels good.”

According to Coach Michelle Baker, Harris has been able to inspire not just a team but a family out of the Tiger volleyball program, and she has been able to bring a good attitude that the team has learned to fall back on during rough times. Harris will be a greatly missed asset to the Wiggins volleyball program, said Baker.

As Harris signs out, her last piece of advice for the underclassmen is, “There comes a point when you have to focus on yourself. Being on a team is great, but sometimes you have to know what is going to be best for you. There are going to be people that love or hate you either way.”

Coaches Baker and Kerr wanted to let these four seniors know that they have been a great asset to have on their court and are going to be missed greatly next year. With these four leaving, they are going to have some big spots to fill.

Senior of the Month: Bernie Kopetzky

By Faythe Harris

Senior Bernie Kopetzky shows off her gymnastic abilities in the high school hallways. Gymnastics is one of the many activities in which Bernie has excelled throughout her high school career.

Senior Bernie Kopetzky shows off her gymnastic abilities in the high school hallways. Gymnastics is one of the many activities in which Bernie has excelled throughout her high school career.

Many seniors strive all four years of high school to achieve goals and make an image for themselves. Bernie Kopetzky has definitely made a name for herself throughout high school; her list of many accomplishments proves this.

Bernie has been involved in a lot throughout high school. She has been involved in volleyball, gymnastics, track, FBLA, choir, and drama. Because Wiggins doesn’t have a gymnastics team, Bernie participates on the Fort Morgan Mustangs team. Bernie has made it to state all four years of high school with her gymnastics team. In fact in 2013 their team was sixth overall. Bernie played volleyball only her freshman year because it interfered too much with gymnastics.

She also made it to state every year in FBLA; however, last year was her shining year when she received the award of regional champion in the introduction to business category. Bernie has also made to it state track all four years of high school, whether she was competing or going as an alternate. Last year Bernie was also league champion in long jump, and she was league champion in the high jump this year.

Honor choir was another activity that Bernie excelled in. She received the distinction of going to honor choir every year of high school. “Bernie has been one of the top vocalist in her class, and it has been an honor having her in class,” said choir director Jeff Everett.

Even when looking back on all these accomplishments, Bernie still has some regrets about high school. “I would try harder my first two years of high school. I had a lot of C’s then that lowered my GPA,” said Bernie.

Bernie plans to attend Aims Community College in Greeley for the next two years of her life, where she will be studying to be an ultrasound technician. After that she plans to finish her degree at UNC.

Senior of the Month: Bernadette Kopetzky

By Trevor Dye

Senior Bernie Kopetzky serenades Tanna Hansen as part of the Voices group's annual singing Valentines. Bernie has been a member of WHS choir all four years of high school.

Senior Bernie Kopetzky serenades Tanna Hansen as part of the Voices group’s annual singing Valentines. Bernie has been a member of WHS choir all four years of high school.

Bernie Kopetzky is one of the two senior girls participating in track, and has very high hopes for her upcoming season in track. Kopetzky has been participating in track since her freshman year, and after last year’s season, she is now more ready than ever for track.

Throughout Kopetzky’s track career, she has made it to State once, and has taken 19th and 20th in regionals. Kopetzky plans to participate in the long jump, high jump, and the triple jump, and has very high expectations for her season this year. “I hope that I can make it in all three of the jumping events, and after the results from last year, I should be able to place at State this year,” said Kopetzky.

Coach Garcia is very proud of what Kopetzky has done in the past years, but is even more excited to see what she can accomplish this year. “She can jump, she is an excellent athlete, and I expect her to at least make it the the state finals, and hopefully place top 5,” said Garcia.

Kopetzky not only participates in track, but is also an active member in the Tiger Den Theatre.Throughout high school, she has been in a total of five plays, and she is now participating on her sixth and final play. “I have a pretty big part in the play, and I am really excited for the play, but I am sad that this will be my last chance to do a play,” said Kopetzky. Director Linda Epple is also sad that this is Kopetzky’s last year. “She has been in great addition to the Tiger Den Theatre, and she always brings energy to practice,” said Epple.

After high school, Kopetzky plans to attend Aims Community College in Greeley, Colorado. She wants to pursue a degree sonographics to become a ultrasound technician. “I am really excited for the new experience that college will bring, and I am very excited to see what my future holds,” said Kopetzky.

Senior of the Month: Matt Ewertz

By Faythe Harris

Matt Ewertz attempts to take down his Akron opponent during the Wiggins Tri last Thursday.  Ewertz is one of three seniors on this year's team.

Matt Ewertz attempts to take down his Akron opponent during the Wiggins Tri last Thursday. Ewertz is one of three seniors on this year’s team.

Matt Ewertz is one of the three seniors on the wrestling team this year and is an overall active student at Wiggins High School. Ewertz has wrestled every year in high school and is hoping for his best  season yet. “I hope I can place at state; that’s pretty much what I have been working for all of high school,” said Ewertz.

Throughout his years wrestling, Matt has had three different head coaches to adapt to. His freshman and sophomore year, his coach was Vince Holten; junior year it was Chris Panabaker; and this year his coach is Dave Croissant. “Matt is a great wrestler. He always works hard and is being a great leader to the underclassmen,” said Croissant.

Matt has also been involved in FBLA, History Club, FFA, Cross Country, National Honor Society, Track, STUCO, and International Club. This year Matt and juniors Austin Dinis and Kaeson Risner completed an FBLA project that could be the first project to make it to Nationals from Wiggins in four years. The group put together a town color run for a group partnership. Matt and seniors Taylor Rider and Jake Donaghy also completed a successful History Day project that made it to the Regional level.

“This year has been going by so much faster than I thought it would,” said Ewertz. Being a senior, Matt has been thinking a lot about what he will miss, and he said the town of Wiggins, the only place he’s ever known, will be what he misses the most. However if Matt’s plan goes as hoped he will not be that far from home, as he hopes to go to Colorado State University to pursue a degree in Civil Engineering in the fall.

Senior of the Month: Taylor Rider

By Faythe Harris

Senior of the Month Taylor Rider hustles down the court during the Tigers' game against Weldona. Rider helped the Tigers to a substantial win in this game.

Senior of the Month Taylor Rider hustles down the court during the Tigers’ game against Weldona. Rider helped the Tigers to a substantial win in this game.

The Wiggins boys’ basketball team has just kicked off their season, and for Taylor Rider it will be his last season. Taylor is one of two seniors on the basketball team this year. He was also one of three seniors on the football team. Taylor has always been very involved in high school, participating in football and basketball for all four years, FBLA for four years, History Club for four years, and FFA for one year. Taylor was also one of the nominees for Homecoming King this year.

Taylor played wide receiver this year on the football team. “I like Taylor; he was a great teammate to have, and he will be missed next year,” said quarterback Kaeson Risner. Taylor is playing guard for the basketball team this year and said he hopes this season will go better than last year’s.

Taylor participated in the district History Day contest just last week. He is doing a group exhibit with fellow seniors Matt Ewertz and Jake Donaghy. Their project this year is on Theodore Roosevelt and his contribution to the conservation of national parks. Last year, Taylor’s group made it the state level with their exhibit on the annexation of Hawaii.

“I am going to miss my friends and football most,” said Taylor about what he will miss about high school. After high school Taylor plans on attending college to be an architect. He has yet to pick which college he wants to attend; however, Oregon is the front-runner for a school at this time.

New Teacher Feature: Justin Adams

By Tailor McClain

Justin Adams is Wiggins Middle/High School's new social studies teacher and basketball coach.

Justin Adams is Wiggins Middle/High School’s new social studies teacher and basketball coach.

Justin Adams is the new middle school social studies teacher and assistant basketball coach in Wiggins. Adams hopes to teach for a long time in Wiggins and plans to raise his children in the area.

Adams is a Longmont High School 2004 graduate. Adams went to four different colleges, one of which was University of Phoenix. Adams later graduated from the University of Phoenix with Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in teaching social studies.

Adams has not always been a teacher. When he graduated from college he took on a different job. “I sold paint, but then I decided I would rather work with children rather than painters,” said Adams.

“I enjoy all the help the Wiggins staff members have given me in settling into my first job as a teacher,” said Adams. “They have made it an easy transition. I love the community here, along with the students that I get to teach.”

Adams plans to stay in Wiggins. He has two children, Jackson and Peyton, whom he plans to raise here. He said he likes that Wiggins is a small town but it also seems like a good place to raise his children. Adams’ wife is a paraprofessional at Wiggins High School.

The students at Wiggins enjoy Adams as a teacher. Many ninth-graders think that Adams is a good teacher, and they find him funny. “I love that we get to work in partners a lot of the time, and also we get to watch interesting videos,” said freshman Makayla Harris.

“Mr. Adams is my favorite teacher,” said eighth-grader Tarrin McClain. She said that he is a fun teacher, and does a good job at helping them learn certain things.

Adams will also be an assistant high school boys’ basketball coach this year. “I think I’m most excited about the improvements that we are going to make on defense this year,” said Adams. The boys are not far away from being great, and he looks forward to working with all of the boys.