Trojaneer https://trojaneer.com The Student News Site of Center Grove High School Thu, 03 Dec 2020 13:29:56 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.5.3 When Will This Be Over? https://trojaneer.com/7914/news/when-will-this-be-over/ https://trojaneer.com/7914/news/when-will-this-be-over/#respond Thu, 03 Dec 2020 13:15:24 +0000 https://trojaneer.com/?p=7914 This year the school is slated to start and finish many construction projects on classrooms, hallways in different areas of the school.

“The new classrooms, They’re part of the design process to provide some flexible seating. It’s 2020, the current classroom design doesn’t necessarily allow us to be as flexible as we’d like. However, we’re hopeful in the future that that will allow flexible grouping of teachers to become more mobile students to be mobile in their desks,” Assistant Principal Jake Short said. “You can also see some updated finishes in the rooms. Those are the pretty things such as paint, carpet, lighting.There are some new interactive touchscreens which I know the teachers and students have been pleased with.”

“You know, it’s great. I really enjoy having the updates. It’s amazing what a fresh coat of paint and new carpet can do to the room just lighten it up. But we’re also very excited because of the good technology with the TV,” Teacher Troy Dice said. “The students in the back of the room can see the board better. The desks are nice, they’re pretty big for the students. They do take up some space in the room, but we’re managing and it’s good. And it’s just nice to have new stuff for the school’s renovations that are planned to be completed within the next one to two years.”

This project here is slated to be done just after two years. Right now we have started on the third floor.

“That’s actually about finished and we have the math hallway to wrap up,” Short said. “Then we’ll start down in some classrooms in the social studies hallway, and we’ll close that down until those are wrapped up. It’s really been awesome. Our students and teachers have both been super resilient.”

For more information on the renovations, you can visit the school’s website:
https://www.centergrove.k12.in.us/site/Default.aspx?PageID=8523

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CG Takes Home 3rd Football State Championship Title https://trojaneer.com/7885/sports/football-takes-home-3rd-state-championship-title/ https://trojaneer.com/7885/sports/football-takes-home-3rd-state-championship-title/#respond Sat, 28 Nov 2020 05:30:23 +0000 https://trojaneer.com/?p=7885 Updated at 11:05 November 29

The Trojans led 21-0, but they hadn’t secured control just yet. The ball was in the hands of Westfield’s quarterback Maximus Webster, whose next move could make or break his team’s chances at competing with the undefeated Trojans. He looked to throw.

And, like it had all season, Center Grove’s defense responded with a big play.

“The most crucial moment in the game was when the Westfield QB threw a slant route to their No. 2 receiver and it was deflected by Jackson Griffin,” senior defensive back Dane Young said. “Matt Soderdahl came across the middle and intercepted the pass for a 15-yard return. This play changed the atmosphere in the game, and it gave our whole team an edge for the rest of the game.”

The first half looked to be rocky early on. Junior quarterback Tayven Jackson threw an interception on the first drive. However, success on the defensive side of the ball allowed for the Trojans to score 28 unanswered points, including a 73-yard touchdown reception by senior receiver Trent Veith.

“They had a little slip up on communication and we were able to take advantage of it,” Veith said. “Winning that game was the best feeling ever. You go down in history and never will forget it. We played as a team, we trusted each other and we did our jobs better than they did theirs. The defense really helped us win.”

While the Shamrocks were able to score in the first half, it was clear that the Trojans controlled the game after a second Carson Steele touchdown and an Austin Watson field goal put the team up 38-7 at the end of the half.

“Kicking field goals is my job, and so I am glad I could get some points on the board for my team,” Watson said. “It’s a blessing to be able to contribute in any game.”

The Trojan defense dominated throughout the game, allowing only two Westfield touchdowns despite standout performances from their receivers. Senior running back Carson Steele, despite being shaken early on, pushed through defenders to rush for 138 yards and two touchdowns in his final game as a Trojan.

“There were some big hits, but I knew I had to finish strong for my team,” Steele said. “The most important thing for me was just to keep moving the ball down the field and trying to score any way possible. It was an honor to wear the Trojan uniform, and I hope people don’t take it for granted when they play in it. And to score, knowing it was your last touchdown, was very upsetting, but I knew that we finished with a purpose and after we won I knew it was great to come through this program.”

A second interception late in the game by Young allowed the Trojans the chance to run off the clock and secure their third state title.

“It was one of the most amazing moments in my career as a Trojan,” Young said. “That one interception really sealed my name as a Trojan football player, and I will remember it and cherish it forever. A lot of hard work went into making that play. I cannot thank the community enough for their tremendous support on and off the field. It was amazing as a player to look up in the stands and see everyone cheering me and the team on after that play.”

For the upperclassmen on the team, playing for the title in Lucas Oil was familiar. In 2019, the Trojans lost to the Carmel Greyhounds in the state championship game, 20-17.

“Last year’s loss was definitely in the back of our minds,” Soderdahl said. “Coach Moore likes to say we started our journey to be the team we are today in the second half of last year’s game. We worked very hard this off-season to gain speed and strength that translated to a win this time around.”

“It felt amazing to be on the winning side after the game and receiving the medals last,” Young said. “Being the last people on the field really showed that we were meant to be on that field from ‘Start 2 Finish’. The locker room was hyped as ever and everyone was so supportive of everyone. We have a tremendous family that we have built and we couldn’t have ended any better way. Last year was a true bummer, but we knew that we were on a mission from start to finish. I love this team so much and I love the community even more.”

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Boys Basketball Prepares for Upcoming Season https://trojaneer.com/7882/sports/boys-basketball-prepares-for-upcoming-season/ https://trojaneer.com/7882/sports/boys-basketball-prepares-for-upcoming-season/#respond Fri, 27 Nov 2020 00:37:26 +0000 https://trojaneer.com/?p=7882 When Center Grove steps on the court Saturday afternoon at Franklin Central, the Trojans will be looking to rebound from last season’s disappointing 9-15 finish. 

“Each year creates new challenges. As a coach, you have to adjust to the ability level your players have, put them in position to succeed with their talents,” coach Zachary Hahn said. “This is the most skilled group I have coached.”

Last season, Center Grove finished 0-7 in the MIC. According to Hahn, they will play smaller, have more ball handlers and look to control the tempo of the game.

“After only graduating one senior last year, we definitely have a lot more varsity experience on the roster this year,” senior center Ethan Jones said. “I feel that that will allow us to play more together and be more consistent overall as a team.” 

Last year, Center Grove graduated Ben Cooney, a power forward who started every game last season. 

“Although we only graduated one, we will have four new players in the top nine for the varsity. Their commitment to each other has been fun to coach so far this season,” Hahn said. “This team has many strengths but the two most important are that they believe in one another and that they are very skilled.”

As opposed to being a very physical and athletic team in the previous years, this year’s team is very skilled as a whole. 

“A strength that we will have this year will be our togetherness,” junior guard Tyler Cerny said.  “We’ve all been playing together for a couple years now so we all know what each person has to bring in order for us to win games.” 

This season the team will have a good core of leadership from it’s seniors. They return seniors Ethan Jones, Landin Hacker, Charlie Bemis and Mason Long.

Cerny says that the most important thing that the team needs to focus on is to win and compete in MIC games and to limit turnovers. Avoiding turnovers would give the team more opportunities to score.

“If we want to be able to compete in the MIC this year we’re definitely gonna have to be consistent [with] shooting,” Jones said. “And avoid turnovers while being strong on defense.” 

A possible weakness Center Grove has is the lack of depth in the size category. Last year, Center Grove had four players standing 6’5” or taller. This year, the team is bringing in two players above 6’5”.

“We don’t have as much height as we have had in recent years,” senior center Charlie Bemis said. “But with the way we are going to play this year, it shouldn’t be too much of an issue.”

With a much smaller lineup this year, rebounding will be a priority that the team will need to focus on, including giving their bigger guards the opportunity to get some offensive rebounds without giving up easy transition baskets.

“Everyone has improved their game tremendously and has gotten a lot stronger from last year so that will put us in a much better position to win games,” Cerny said.

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The Right to Lights https://trojaneer.com/7879/opinion/the-right-to-lights/ https://trojaneer.com/7879/opinion/the-right-to-lights/#respond Mon, 23 Nov 2020 17:25:35 +0000 https://trojaneer.com/?p=7879 The rough and cold, 20-degree wind whistles outside of your cozy home. Meanwhile, as you hold your hot chocolate in your left hand and a sugar cookie in your right, you watch your favorite Hallmark movie–the one with all the sappy romance and corny comedy, highlighting the magical presence of the Christmas spirit. 

What you most love about this season is decorating the entire house with twinkling lights, glowing trees, stockings, candles and almost anything else that emanates “Christmas.” You decide to draw as much attention to your decorations as possible and order a group of light-up palm trees to place in your front yard. Glowing polar bears are placed on the ground, and you decide to bring all the decor together as you place a 20-ft inflatable Santa Claus on your balcony. To you, this is what Christmas is all about. 

Only one thing. It’s still October. Christmas is really over ten weeks away. Even so, you’re the only one on your street that has decorated their entire house. As you watch people walk by each day outside of your window, there is not a single person who doesn’t gawk or stop in their tracks to stare at the display of your decorations.

This is exactly what my family has experienced each year living in Greenwood, Indiana. Initially, we believed Christmas lights are the best to put up after Thanksgiving, but as time went on, our priorities changed. 

Realistically, the best time to put Christmas lights up is the beginning to mid-November when Thanksgiving is still approaching. If Christmas lights are put up within this period, it allows for a smooth and effortless transition into the Christmas season. The weather is warmer, and because of “fall back,” the early hours of darkness are eased by the glow of lights. Furthermore, Thanksgiving dinner will be enhanced by the subtle presence of Christmas which enables families to count their blessings even more. And who actually decorates solely for Thanksgiving?

In the future, you might also consider putting your lights up even earlier than November, specifically the days preceding Halloween, just as my family has recently done. Yes, this is extreme, but decorating before Halloween will allow as many trick-or-treaters as possible to witness the glory of your Christmas lights. Not only this, but if you’re not a fan of Halloween, putting your lights up earlier can advance the holidays you actually care about much more quickly.

Still, you should ask yourself, what do Christmas lights mean to you? Is it a way for you to express your creativity to the world? Do you find peace and joy witnessing each light glow when you turn it on? If so, put those lights up before Thanksgiving and give yourself more time to admire the aura that accompanies Christmas lights. 

In the end, don’t allow your neighbors or peers to judge you for how early or late you decide to display your Christmas decor, no matter how absurd they might appear. I take pride in the lights displayed throughout my home, even when it can feel embarrassing at times. What matters to me as these lights go up at the dawn of November is the warmth and gratification I feel from having the freedom to choose how and when my lights are seen by the world.

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Football Seeks 2nd Consecutive Semistate Win at Ben Davis https://trojaneer.com/7875/sports/football-seeks-2nd-consecutive-semistate-win/ https://trojaneer.com/7875/sports/football-seeks-2nd-consecutive-semistate-win/#respond Fri, 20 Nov 2020 15:09:17 +0000 https://trojaneer.com/?p=7875 When 6A No. 1 Center Grove takes the field tonight at Ben Davis, a berth in next weekend’s state championship game will be on the line. After running the table during the regular season, finishing a perfect 9-0, Center Grove has won its three tournament games by a combined score of 135-14. Tonight, they face a Ben Davis squad they beat 35-12 earlier in the season.

Ben Davis (7-5) is led by junior quarterback J’uan Swanson. Swanson has 1,706 passing yards with 18 touchdowns and 9 interceptions, on top of 451 rushing yards and six rushing touchdowns. The Giants’ starting running back is hurt, but backup running back Devon Wiley stepped up last week against Carmel, running for 103 yards on 12 carries. On the season he averages 6.8 yards a carry and has five touchdowns despite getting limited touches as a backup.

“They have a great passing game and their quarterback has improved throughout the year. He is capable of throwing the long ball and scrambling out of pocket,” senior cornerback Dane Young said. “Our approach has only changed a little bit. We have seen on film that the quarterback and defensive back core has been becoming comfortable with their roles on their team, so we are understanding their tendencies even better than we did the first time we played them.”

The Giants’ starting running back is hurt, but backup running back Devon Wiley stepped up last week against Carmel, running for 103 yards on 12 carries. On the season he averages 6.8 yards a carry and has five touchdowns despite getting limited touches as a backup.

“They remind me a lot of us last year,” senior safety Brayton Spetter said. “We were 4-5 going into the playoffs and we turned it up and [went] on a winning streak.”

Much like last year’s Center Grove team that finished the regular season 4-5 before making a run to the state title game, Ben Davis started 1-3. However, the Giants have won their last five games with an average point differential of 29.0. Center Grove will look to its defense to slow down a Giants offense that has put up over 40 points in four of its last five games.

“I just think that we need to take advantage of what their [offensive line] gives us,” junior defensive tackle Caden Curry said. “I [have to] make sure that I take advantage of all of their mess ups.”

On offense, Center Grove will look to continue a balanced attack, led by quarterback Tayven Jackson, who has a total of 1,605 passing yards with 14 touchdowns and only 3 interceptions. He also has 184 rushing yards and six rushing touchdowns. The Trojans’ senior running back Carson Steele has 1408 rushing yards and 26 touchdowns on the season.

“Ben Davis has a lot of athletes all over the field with a lot of speed. They are very physical so we need to be prepared for that. We need to control the ball and make smart decisions,” senior split end Trent Veith said. “We have to be physical on the line and while blocking. We have to hit them harder than they are going to hit us.”

A victory tonight would send Center Grove into the state championship game next weekend at Lucas Oil for the second straight season, matching up with the winner of tonight’s Merrillville-Westfield semi state game.

“I will always preach to believe in ourselves,” cornerbacks’ coach Brian Harbin said. “I believe that as long as we play hard and do what we know how to do then there’s no way that we can lose this game.”

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Becoming a Ninja Warrior https://trojaneer.com/7866/features/becoming-a-ninja-warrior/ https://trojaneer.com/7866/features/becoming-a-ninja-warrior/#respond Tue, 17 Nov 2020 12:35:50 +0000 https://trojaneer.com/?p=7866 The lights dimmed, the crowd sat silently on the edge of their seats, and freshman Jessica Wombles stood alone on the course. The only thing that stood between Wombles and the final buzzer was a towering, monstrous warped wall. As she peered up at the wall from below, it looked as if it could swallow her whole at any moment. Wombles squinted her eyes, focused her mind and prepared to attack.

“I feel my heart pumping through my body, the adrenaline coursing through my veins to the point where I’m practically shaking. I take a few deep breaths while the room is quiet yet bursting with noise. All I have to do is run up that 14 feet wall and reach my victory. I force myself to focus, then take that running start leading up to my awaiting victory at the top,” Wombles said.

Wombles is a ninja warrior. She started training about a year and a half ago at a gym called “Train Yard 317.” She was inspired by the show “American Ninja Warrior” and decided that she was interested in learning how to defeat the obstacles and eventually try out for the show.

“I want to be on the show because I feel like it gives me a sense of accomplishment because I grew up watching it every day. I would come home from school just to see what happened in each course,” Wombles said.

With her goals in mind, Wombles has high ambitions for her training. Having qualified for finals in Las Vegas, Wombles needs to train as hard as she can. 

“My main goal in ninja training is to push myself to the best I can be. I train as hard as I can every time I go to my ninja gym (3 days a week). The Las Vegas finals, which I qualified for, are coming up soon and I really want to get to the final stage,” Wombles said.

Wombles trains and competes on numerous different obstacles, all of which test endurance, strength and balance.

“My favorite obstacle is a trapeze catch,” Wombles said. “That’s when you swing on a trapeze bar really high and then let go and catch another trapeze bar. I love it so much because it gives me the feeling of flying. I love all the strength it takes to do ninja. There are a lot of obstacles that are very fun for me.”

Apart from the physical strength that Wombles needs to conquer the obstacles, ninja training also requires a great deal of mental strength. 

“The most challenging part would have to be the mental part of it. Yes, ninja requires a lot of core and upper body strength and balance, but when you really think about it, winning can only happen if you’re in the right mindset. If you think you’re going to mess up on an obstacle, then you will. But you have to train your brain not to give up,” Wombles said.

Wombles explained that she used to suffer from mental blocks; however, she has learned to overcome them.

“I used to have mental blocks until during the course,” Wombles said. “One time I realized that I only had one minute left on the clock before my time ran out. I realized there wasn’t enough time for mental blocks so I jumped hoping I could catch the obstacle and I did.”

Even with the challenges that ninja presents, Wombles is able to balance her struggles in a healthy way. She even manages to have time for other activities. Wombles is also active in other sports, such as cheerleading; however, to Wombles, ninja stands out from all the rest.

“Ninja is an individual sport that is very intense. Don’t get me wrong, I love cheer. But ninja beats any sport. It requires focus, talent, and brute strength. I definitely love competition. The competition between courses and competitors really hypes me up,” Wombles said.

Despite the physical and mental obstacles that ninja creates, Wombles plans to continue training to be the best that she can possibly be. After all her training experience, Wombles has lots of advice to offer to other students.

“I never realized how far I could get with ninja and I never really believed that I could get to the Las Vegas World Finals. Everyone can do absolutely anything with the right mindset. I’m only 5’1 and can never reach any of the obstacles, but I learned to jump higher to reach or run faster up the wall to reach the top. If anyone tells you that you can’t do it, prove them wrong,” Wombles said.

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TikToxic: The Problem with TikTok https://trojaneer.com/7863/opinion/tiktoxic-the-problem-with-tiktok/ https://trojaneer.com/7863/opinion/tiktoxic-the-problem-with-tiktok/#respond Mon, 16 Nov 2020 13:03:59 +0000 https://trojaneer.com/?p=7863 TikTok–a social media platform that is known for its intriguing, short videos–has grown exponentially popular over the past few years. Whether you like it or not, it is admirably phenomenal. As the app has become more accepted in our society and is known for its creative and entertaining content, it encourages a dark theme of creativity.

Every platform on social media has toxic characteristics, but TikTok is a unique case. Is TikTok an app that upholds positive morals, inspires its users to make connections with others, and encourages personal growth? Or does it rather normalize a culture that evokes deep hatred, disunity and insecurity in today’s youngest generation?

Like most forms of social media, TikTok is notably an app where content is algorithm-driven and varies from person to person. As almost half of the app’s 800 million monthly users are between 16 and 24, it is evident that Gen-Z is not as “woke” and open-minded as we may have previously conceived. Trends that promote eating disorders, bullying, fat-shaming and unsurprisingly, racism, persistently attract the attention of young users. TikTok is evidently more than just a source of entertainment. It is a medium through which millions of people find opportunities to hurt others and cause discouragement and negative self-esteem across communities.

Students had strong opinions about whether TikTok advocated for youth mental health.

”I think TikTok has both negative and positive effects on self-esteem. It’s a little bit of both because there are videos that can promote positivity to help people in general but there are also videos that can influence someone completely in the wrong way,” senior Liana Mendler says.

Similarly, some students believe TikTok encourages mostly negative self-esteem within young people, especially through fat-shaming.

“I think TikTok has more of a bad influence because people see these videos of other people, and they end up seeing the toxic comments that either make fun of their body type or say toxic things like “Okay I’m not eating anymore,” says senior Marie Encarnado.

Despite TikTok’s persistent updates of its community guidelines, it has yet to be successful in censoring fat-shaming and self-destructive disorders. The lack of action is one of the most notable characteristics of TikTok. The app seems to romanticize eating disorders and hateful comments toward other body types. It largely revolves around a stereotypical body image, which is a dangerous way for young users to damage their self-confidence and health at such a young age. The app unveils the culture of how we tend to glorify particular aesthetics.

Past trends on the app have created a major issue in which users indulge stereotypes and discrimination. The “How’s My Form” trend led to making fun of people of color, which are wrongly described as “harmless jokes.” The horrendous George Floyd Challenge involved reenactments of Floyd’s final moments. Trends in other nations have also promoted colorism and blackface for entertainment. Even newer trends where teens dress up and have photoshoots in bedsheet ghost costumes are a reminder of the white supremacist group the Klu Klux Klan. Users claim the costumes may represent Confederate ghosts, making the entire trend alarmingly controversial. It seems as though when one trend ends an even worse one becomes popular, and the pattern constantly repeats.

Point-of-view (POV) videos are also popular threads, where users act and explain what they are doing through labels. Although many are harmless, numerous videos revolve around traumatizing situations such as rape, kidnapping or bullying. Once again, these cruel actions are normalized, encouraged and even romanticized. Most notably, the POV videos fail to propose a meaningful message at the end.

Those who came to the app for its positive and funny content are left outraged at the lack of sensitivity, blatant ignorance and hateful intentions toward different groups of people on TikTok. Many of these creators who are guilty of negative content apologize and defend their actions as mere jokes, and they are quick to move on. This cycle of fake apologies and hatred will only continue if TikTok does not take more responsibility to create a more pure platform.

There should be repercussions for the users’ actions, such as revoking the rights for a user to access their account for some time. TikTok should hold the youth accountable for their mistakes and teach them about their immoral actions. Not only does the app itself need improvement, but its users need to be more vigilant and decisive about the content they post.

TikTok may perhaps be an app where people are empowered to express themselves and uplift others, but its users have transformed it into a toxic platform. Only by using the app to shed positivity can we truly begin to fix the issue. So make the effort to leave nice comments on the videos you see instead of criticizing and belittling others. If you feel as though you cannot say anything kind, put your phone down, question your integrity, and evaluate yourself as a person in general. Perhaps the issue was never the app, but rather its hateful users who feel the need to promote negativity across the platform.

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Looking For Regional Championship, Football Takes on Warren Central https://trojaneer.com/7857/sports/looking-for-regional-championship-football-takes-on-warren-central/ https://trojaneer.com/7857/sports/looking-for-regional-championship-football-takes-on-warren-central/#respond Fri, 13 Nov 2020 19:30:18 +0000 https://trojaneer.com/?p=7857 When the Trojans run out of the helmet for the twelfth time this season, they’ll be looking for their third consecutive regional championship. No. 1 and undefeated Center Grove hosts MIC rival Warren Central tonight with a berth in the Final Four on the line.

“[We] can’t underestimate the opponent,” junior safety Mitchell Evans said. “Just because we beat them earlier in the season doesn’t mean anything. We need to focus on this week like it’s a new [opponent] because [we] know they’ve gotten better in the past few weeks.”

Warren Central enters tonight’s game with a 4-5 record, including a 2-5 record in the MIC. Warren Central avenged early season losses to North Central and Lawrence North in their first two sectional games, and now turn their eyes to Center Grove, who won the initial match up 20-0 in the second week of the season. This shows that they have the resilience to show up in the playoffs and perform under pressure. Warren Central’s junior quarterback Prince Powell has thrown for 1099 yards and four touchdowns, adding another eight touchdowns on the ground. 

In the first two state tournament games, Center Grove has used a balanced attack on offense. Against Columbus North in the opening-round game, junior quarterback Tayven Jackson threw for 264 yards and a touchdown, while CG picked up 161 yards and five touchdowns on the ground, including 56 yards by Jackson. The next week, Center Grove relied on its ground game, rushing for 261 yards, with six different players rushing for 25 yards or more, and four different players finding the end zone. Tonight, Center Grove will look to keep its balanced attack rolling.

“Warren Central will challenge us and try to stop the run game as well as the passing game,” senior running back Carson Steele said. “They have gotten a lot better throughout the season as they have played and are a lot better team [than the first time we played them].”

Jackson knows tonight’s game will not be easy, despite Center Grove’s early season 20-0 victory over Warren Central.

“The challenges are to block their guys because they are very physical,” Jackson said. “They’ve gotten more physical and smarter.”

Center Grove has proven this season that they are more than capable of ending a hot streak. When they played 4-0 North Central, they ended their four-game winning streak with a 47-0 victory. When they played 8-2 Columbus East, they ended their seven-game winning streak with a 55-7 win. When they played 8-0 Cathedral, they ended their eight-game winning streak with a 17-14 win. Warren Central is only on a two-game winning streak, but as far as the Trojans are concerned, that’s enough to end it. 

“The most important part is to remember who we are,” senior corner Matt Soederdahl said. “We know that they have improved from the last time we played them, but so have we. We just [have to] remember what to watch for and what we have learned on film. As long as we do our jobs we’ll win.”

Tonight’s game is also important because it would move Center Grove one game closer to Lucas Oil and the state championship game.

“As it often works in life, we need to do what we can to contribute to a greater cause,” safeties’ coach Tom Blanck said. “The football team is a ‘greater cause.’ We need to be a group of young men who work together for the greater purpose of winning [the state championship].”

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Senior Turns Passion for Photography into Business https://trojaneer.com/7854/features/senior-turns-passion-for-photography-into-business/ https://trojaneer.com/7854/features/senior-turns-passion-for-photography-into-business/#respond Fri, 13 Nov 2020 18:31:37 +0000 https://trojaneer.com/?p=7854 After learning the basics of photography, from the rule of thirds to finding inspiration, Senior Molly Stiles now operates her own business.

“I took Mrs Fowler’s photography class sophomore year, and then her advanced photography course she offers junior year,” Stiles said. “I decided to take these courses because I wanted to learn how to improve my skills. During her class, my love for photography grew a lot. I learned how to shoot with better angles, and what types of techniques are best depending on the type of shot you are trying to get.”

While Stiles learned more about the technical aspects of photography in the class, she also left with a greater understanding of what it meant to be a photographer.

“Mrs Fowler’s class was a great way to inspire me and help me learn everything there is to know about photography,” Stiles said. “I was challenged throughout my two years in the class to push myself out of my comfort zone, as I did numerous different photo shoots from taking pictures of Christmas lights to portraits of people in class with background lights. I think this has made me into the photographer I am today.”

After learning the skills behind taking photos, Stiles has started operating a small business of her own, shooting with her Canon camera and editing photos on her computer.

“I started out just finding inspiration for my beginning shoots on apps like Pinterest, where I grew to love some of the different photography that people were publishing,” Stiles said. “I started out just taking photo shoots of my friends, family and dog. However I slowly started taking pictures of more and more people, and started doing multiple types of shoots. I have taken senior pictures for numerous people this year, as well as family photos and my personal favorite: portraits.”

Stiles’ business currently is based off of social media, where her Instagram page @mollystilesphotography has over 200 followers, but she hopes to expand to other platforms in the future.

“People have discovered my business by my social media page and people talking about it. I’m currently growing my business to eventually have an actual website, which will contain my photos and contact information. So far I’ve been getting reached out to by more people, and I wanted to create an organized site for them to go to,” Stiles said.

Stiles hopes to not only continue to grow her love for photography, but also to grow her business so it can function throughout college and even after that.

“I hope that I can continue to grow my business and take pictures of more people,” Stiles said. “My favorite part of taking all of these different photos for people is that I can capture people’s different personalities and emotions. I hope that my future with this skill is bright.”

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The Inside Scoop on Local Ice Cream https://trojaneer.com/7847/op-eds/review/the-inside-scoop-on-local-ice-cream/ https://trojaneer.com/7847/op-eds/review/the-inside-scoop-on-local-ice-cream/#respond Thu, 12 Nov 2020 14:08:01 +0000 https://trojaneer.com/?p=7847 Note: There is a poll embedded within this post, please visit the site to participate in this post's poll.Given everything that has happened in our community and around the world recently, it is nice to have lighthearted things like this to help. Although we should not ignore our problems and our grief, it is fine to immerse ourselves in distractions every once in a while. Hopefully these distractions can provide some joy or relief to someone who is hurting and needs to be uplifted.

Handel’s Homemade Ice Cream & Yogurt

Handel’s is one of the newest ice cream spots in the area. This location combines quality ingredients with a wide variety of flavors that I found both exciting and delicious. The best overall flavors and the ones I recommend most strongly are Oreo dough and black cherry. Mint chocolate chip and Oreo dough are great options for kids, while adults should explore flavors like black cherry and coffee chocolate chip. When I placed a pickup order, the process was extremely easy due to their great customer service. They also have created a very COVID-friendly environment given that you eat your ice cream outside. Overall the most appealing detail about this shop is all the ice cream is homemade, and it really shows in overall taste and consistency when compared to other places.

Overall Rating: 9.5

Ritter’s Frozen Custard

Ritter’s has several locations in the area. One thing you get with Ritter’s is variety. It offers specialty sundaes, such as Twix-in-between that you won’t be able to find anywhere else. The overall quality and consistency of the ice cream is good but not quite on the level of a homemade ice cream place such as Handel’s. I found that the most appealing aspect of this shop is the Italian ice. The Italian ice creates even more variety and is a great alternative to having ice cream every time you go. The flavors I highly recommend are Blue Razz Italian ice and their Twix-In-Between sundae. Ritter’s is an amazing place to go if you are looking for a unique experience with unique flavors.

Overall rating: 9

Ella’s Frozen Yogurt

Ella’s is a staple in the community. The problem is that customers make snap decisions after trying a flavor for the first time. That’s because customers are encouraged to try their flavors before they fill a cup. If they love it, it’s all they get, but if they don’t love it, they never try it again. Ella’s purpose has more to do with catering to the preferences of young kids. They provide a great customization experience in terms of being able to choose your own toppings, put them on yourself, and create your own unique dish. I personally recommend cake batter as the flavor is one of their better ones and goes well with many of their toppings. Overall Ella’s is a great place to take kids and provides a customization option not found anywhere else in the area.

Overall rating: 7.5

Mrs. Curl Ice Cream Shop and Outdoor Cafe

Mrs Curl Ice Cream has been in the community since 1962. Once again variety is something that this place has on its side. It serves sundaes, shakes, razzles and even flavor blasts. The most impressive thing about this ice cream shop is how they are able to have such a wide variety and are still able to maintain a very high level of quality in their ice cream. A flavor I strongly recommend is the classic Chocolate and Vanilla Twist. This flavor highlights Mrs Curl biggest strengths as an ice cream shop, their versatility and overall quality.

Overall rating:9

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