Due to the loss of a talented senior class and a schedule packed with formidable opponents, the Elizabethtown girls’ soccer team was in a tough position to start the 2021 fall season. With an overall record of seven wins, zero ties, and ten losses (four of which were devastating overtime losses), the season was not a success by the numbers. However, the girls persevered and finished the season on a winning streak of four games, including two wins over Manheim Central, reinforcing the team’s growth over the season. Captain Lily Heistand (grade 11) said, “Our season didn’t go exactly as we had hoped, but together we were able to finish strong. I think we are all looking forward to next year, and are excited for the great things that we have the potential and talent to accomplish.” Led by captains Kendall Davies (grade 12), Jena Witters (grade 11), and Lily Heistand, the girls’ soccer team finished third in section two, and missed district playoffs by one spot. Junior Taryn Hummer was named a section two first team all-star alongside sophomore Josie Spayd, and junior Jena Witters was named a second-team all-star as well.
Compared to their opponents, the Elizabethtown boys’ soccer team was fairly young, starting many underclassmen alongside veteran upperclassmen. However, this fall 2021 season the boys proved they can hold their own against more experienced teams. With an overall record of six wins, seven losses, and three ties, the boys were on the cusp of a winning season. Captains Mitchell Garber (grade 12), Chaz Mowrer (grade 12), and Dax Kelly (grade 11) led their team to a hard-fought win against Manheim Central, exemplifying the team’s discipline and drive. The boys’ soccer team finished fourth in section two and advanced to post-season play, facing off against Central Dauphin in the first round of district playoffs. Central Dauphin, currently ranked first in the state and thirteenth in the nation, beat Elizabethtown four to zero. Junior Dax Kelly was named a section two first team all-star, and sophomores Hayden Flory and Jason Stark were named second team all-stars.
By: Andrea Rodriguez
The 2021 Elizabethtown Bears Varsity Football season was one of significant ups and downs. The season started with a win over the rival Donegal Indians and a winning record in the first half of the season. There were great performances from many players including junior quarterback Josh Rudy, senior Patrick Gilhool, and junior Braden Cummings. Unfortunately, the Bears struggled when conference play started and they were winless in the second half of the year. Still, there are reasons to believe that the future is bright for this group with several key players returning and valuable lessons learned in 2021.
In their first game, the Bears had to deal with bad weather as well as a muddy field. They overcame these troubles and other costly errors to outlast their school’s rivals. In the two weeks that followed, the Bears dealt with offensive struggles and consecutive losses that put the success of the team in serious doubt.
Over the next two weeks, the Bears faced challenges on and off the field. The offense struggled to put points on the board leading to losses against Mechanicsburg and Lower Dauphin. Despite all of this, the Bears maintained focus and strove for improvement. This hard work paid off in their week four home win over McCaskey. Gilhool’s quick return from injury personified E-town’s perseverance and resilience. Rudy’s three touchdown passes to Cummings helped to provide a blueprint for continued success through the air in the coming weeks.
A week five defensive struggle at Cedar Crest allowed the Etown defense to show that they could seal a game for the team when necessary. They held Cedar Crest to just two scores, giving the offense the ball with less than four minutes left and a chance to win. The offense capitalized when Gilhool hit Cummings on a 55 yard completion to set up Hayden Haver’s second rushing touchdown of the night. The defense came through again on Cedar Crest’s last drive, forcing and recovering a fumble. The Bears ran down the clock and special teams sealed the win when punter Chaz Mower fielded a faulty snap and got the punt off under duress.
There was to be no comeback in week six versus Conestoga Valley. However, it wasn’t for lack of effort. The Bears found themselves down by three touchdowns early and were never quite able to catch up. Still, because of their unwillingness to surrender and their continued fight, they pulled within a score late in the fourth quarter. They were able to carry this momentum into Warwick for a week eight matchup with the Warriors. Rudy threw three touchdowns and ran for another as the Bears put up the most points they scored all year. Unfortunately, a series of mishaps on special teams allowed Warwick to maintain their lead for most of the game. Despite this, Etown scored a dramatic last-minute touchdown to put them within two points. The call on the conversion was controversial, as the officials determined that while the Bears made a successful reception, they did not cross the goal line, leading to a heartbreaking loss.
The losses continued over the next two weeks as the defense struggled to get other teams off the field. The offense kept it close against Cocalico, but could not do the same against Manheim Central, leading to the Bears’ worst loss of the season.
Prior to the final game of the season against Solanco, the loss of a classmate under tragic circumstances puts into perspective the importance of a game. The Bears, however, knew that this game presented them with the opportunity to not only pay tribute to Colby Hall, but to honor his family and friends by putting their best effort forward in front of them in the last game of the season. With the rain coming down increasingly hard as the game progressed, the Bears came out fast and never slowed down, beating Solanco 32-14.
This final win was a shining example of what the 2021 Bears football team was. They were a family who never stopped fighting for each other, no matter how challenging it could be at times.
By: Meadow Winters
As the fall season rolls around, many people look forward to the festive holiday of Halloween. To prepare for the spooky season, people often find themselves pumpkin picking, walking through corn mazes, and going to haunted houses. Over this previous long weekend, these intrepid reporters decided to explore the infamous Jason’s Woods, a well-known horror attraction in Pennsylvania. After a 40-minute drive along windy and ominous backroads, we approached the desolate field known as Jason’s Woods. Upon entering, we were directed towards the ticket booth, at which we were presented with two purchase options: three attractions for the price of $25, or all five attractions for $40. We opted for the lesser of the two, which included the Horrifying Hayride, Chamber of Horrors, and Zombie Apocalypse. Throughout our experience, actors in scary costumes wielding realistic-looking props approached us as we made our way through the attractions. One of us, who has previously experienced Field of Screams, found that many of the attractions were similar, taking away that level of fear a beginner might have. However, the actors still made a good effort to scare us as we progressed through the attractions, and a few of them were able to succeed.
Jason’s Woods provides customers with a decision in how they wish to go through, leaving it very open to flexibility. Visitors at the Woods aren’t expected to experience all attractions in the same night. Staff at the haunted house are aware of the attractions customers haven’t seen thanks to their tickets, which are punched at each attraction.
To experience all five attractions in a stress-free manner, we recommend that you arrive at Jason’s Woods near their opening hour at 7pm. The horror attractions’ hours range, but are typically from 7pm-10pm. It’s worth noting that Jason’s Woods accepts payment in cash only, for both ticket sales and food, but there is an ATM on site. For more information about Jason’s Woods, visit https://jasonswoods.com/.
By Zafrin Zalal and Rose Manton
Photo Credit- Zafrin Zalal and Rose Manton
BY STAFF WRITER EMMA CREASON
When I first heard about Soul, I’ll admit my first thought was that it would be another Inside Out. However, after just a few minutes of watching the newly-released movie, streaming exclusively on Disney+, it was clear that the heart of Soul is all its own. While it does have a similar look and feel, the entire movie is meticulously planned out, and the result is absolutely stunning from the opening credits to the very end. It’s clear that the animation was a labor of love mixing lifelike characters with ethereal “souls” seamlessly. The integration of music into the film was nearly perfect with stellar musical artistry and realistic portrayal of “the zone” one enters when performing. The animation is subtle yet breathtaking, a wonderful presentation of Pixar’s best work.
The storyline follows Joe Gardner, a New York City based jazz pianist and middle school band director. Black American culture, specifically in relation to the Black community’s historical connection with jazz, is prominent, something not often seen in mainstream media productions. It’s refreshing to see diversity come through so strongly without feeling forced. The character development of the movie extends beyond our piano-playing protagonist, showing the power of one person with a zest for life to invigorate a community. With expectation subversion, comedic timing, and powerful messages, Soul hits home with everyone as it poses thoughtful questions about the meaning of life and inspires audiences of all backgrounds and walks of life.
Soul premiered on December 25, 2020, and is available for streaming on Disney+.