Monthly Archives: January 2023

Sports: The Servite Friars Feared the Spear at Bosco Wrestling’s Senior Night 

by Ed Crowe 

On Tuesday, the Bosco Braves took on the Servite Friars and defeated them in a 71-6 blowout, making them Trinity League Champions. The favored Braves delivered a strong performance, claiming yet another league title.

It was also Senior Night. The seniors that were recognized included Nicco Ruiz, Mark Ayala, Michael Morales, Michael Barba, Julian Barajas and Nathan Boyce. 

Nathan, who has only been wrestling for one year, had a great match and contributed a decisive win for the Braves. Though brief, Nate cherished his wrestling experience at Bosco. 

“Since my junior year, I have felt welcomed by the other wrestlers as well as coaches and staff. It is a sport I highly recommend for students who want to experience the Bosco brotherhood,” said Nathan. 

With yet another accomplishment under the belt of the wrestling program, Head Coach Jeff Anderson, Class of ‘98, believes that the team showed significant improvement, but he also expressed the proverbial coach’s mantra.

“There is still room for improvement,” Anderson said.

The Bosco Wrestling program, which is now ranked fourteen in the nation per MatScouts rankings, performed fantastically in the Five Counties tournament. This tournament was highly competitive, with 84 teams competing for first place. The Bosco wrestling team scored a tournament high of 186.5 points, firmly securing the spot of first place.

Not only did the wrestlers take home first place, but ten wrestlers placed in the top ten individually. 

In the lower weight classes, freshman Sean Willcox placed second in the 106-pound weight division, freshman Issac Torres placed seventh in the 113-pound weight division, freshman Nathan Carillo placed second in the 120-pound weight division, freshman Tigran Greyan placed fifth in the 132-pound weight division and sophomore Joseph Antonio placed second in 145-pound weight class division. 

“Tigran Greyan has been developing very well. He has taken a couple of tough losses but seems to learn and improve each and every time,” said Coach Anderson.

In the higher weight classes, junior Yazir Tellez placed third in the 152-pound weight division, senior Julian Barajas placed fifth in the 170-pound weight division and senior Mark Ayala placed second in the 195-pound weight division. In addition to these eight wrestlers who placed in the top ten, senior Nicco Ruiz took first place in the 160-pound weight division, while also being named the Middle Weight MVP of the tournament. Sophomore Nicholas Sahakian also took first place in the 220-pound weight class division.

After winning the tournament, Coach Anderson was impressed by the performance each wrestler gave, but he also noticed areas of growth as the team looks ahead to CIF Team Duals. 

“Sometimes they start thinking too much on the mat wanting a more strategic match instead of letting the training take over,” said Coach Anderson.

The Braves have high hopes of showing further growth in upcoming CIF competition.  

Around Bosco: Historic Winter Formal King Crowned During Homecoming Basketball Game

by Isaac Mays, Sports Editor

At St. John Bosco High School’s very own Thunderdome, St. Joseph’s Associated Student Body (ASB) revealed the Winter Formal Dance King, Phansidilang “King” Dina, who is the first ever international student elected King.

Anticipation arose leading up to Friday, January 20th, where the court and King was celebrated. During halftime of the Bosco Basketball Homecoming Game, all nominees lined up for the reveal. Much of the study body gathered to watch the Braves face off against the Servite Friars, as they also cheered on their classmates in the race for Formal King. 

One senior would be crowned as the King, while the others would serve on the Winter Formal Court. The 2023 senior nominees included Alex Palmer, Ryan Gutierrez and King (Phansidilang) Dina. Additionally, junior princes Max Abrahamson and Grant Hidalgo-Villanueva were given the opportunity to serve on the court after winning their respective elections.

During halftime, candidates were escorted by Saint Joseph’s ASB onto the gym floor. Senior Grace Maxwell crowned King Dina as the official 2023 Winter Formal King. The crowd erupted into applause as the King, King, would now be supported by Ryan, Alex, Max and Grant as his Formal Court.

“I feel like I belong somewhere. I am also representing Asian communities out there, not just Saint John Bosco or Saint Joseph’s,” King said.

King is an international student from Phnom Penh, Cambodia, and is a member of the Bosco’s International Exchange Program. King has become the first exchange student to win the title of Formal King in school history. King participates in extracurricular activities, such as Kairos, and also maintains a job as a barista at a local boba shop.

“I just want to say thank you to Bosco and Joseph’s for voting me on as Formal King.” 

Spectators were also very impressed with the overall preparation that the Bosco administration had put into the event. All of the pairs walking up to the gym floor were dressed in formal attire as they processed in perfect fashion.

“I think [the court] all looked very good…I think [Bosco Student Life] did a really good job planning,” said senior Ryan Cirrincione.

King Dina would later go on to perform his duties as the Formal King, the most significant of which being leading the slow dance Saturday evening at the Winter Formal Dance. King and his St. Joseph’s dance partner, Emma Persi, danced to “Take My Breath Away” by Berlin.

King and the rest of the formal court saw themselves as the stars of the evening, as this election played a significant role in the course of the evening. Held at The MODERN in Long Beach, near the Long Beach Airport, Winter Formal was a smashing success.

After the festivities, the Bosco Braves executed a dominating victory against the Friars, 73-45, solidifying the night for the Bosco community.

Life Of A Brave: Senior Privileges Are Awarded To The Class Of 2023

by Brett Baligad, Senior Editor

As the class of 2023 begins their eigth semester, the Senior Board approves class privileges based on the behavior of the overall class. Through spirit wear on finals week, college sweatshirts and extended access to the Oratory, the class of 2023 reflects on their final months at Bosco.

With graduation in sight for the class of 2023, the much anticipated senior privileges have just been implemented. The privileges are conditional, as they represent the leadership and maturity of the school. Throughout their time at Bosco, the seniors had the opportunity to move up the ranks and learn how to lead by example. In turn, the decision to initiate the requested privileges was granted.

“By being role models in the first semester, the administration determines our worthiness of deserving senior privileges and how many,” said Associated Student Body Co-President Ryan Gutierrez.

In collaboration with the administration, the senior class board was able to come to terms with what would be appropriate class privileges.

The first privilege is to have the opportunity to wear college sweatshirts everyday. By April, a vast majority of the senior Braves will have all of their heard back about their college application. With many students already being accepted through early decision, early action and outright athletic scholarships, the past few weeks have already featured college sweatshirts from across the country.

“I think it’s a great privilege to wear our college gear,” said senior Sam Hentges, who will attend the Air Force Academy next year on a baseball scholarship. “All of us have worked really hard, and I am excited to see seniors representing top schools from across the country.”

In regards to uniform, during finals week, seniors are allowed to wear Bosco affiliated shorts, sweats, sweatshirts and t-shirts rather than a typical Bosco uniform. This promotes a relaxing environment during the final week of testing for the class of 2023. Many Braves are now able to represent the various sports teams, extracurriculars and other Bosco related affiliations they maintain that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to wear at school.

“It’s sad our time is coming to an end at Bosco, however, being able to wear spirit gear lets us worry about one less thing during finals week,” said senior Evan Chavez.

Lastly, the seniors are now able to have lunch in The Oratory. The Oratory is a lounge with food and games open to the student body before and after school. This concept of having hospitality on campus was inspired by St. John Bosco himself. 

On select days, the class of 2023 will have access to the room during lunchtime. The first time the Oratory became open was this past Friday. The senior board sold pizza, students played games and rested on the couches.

“I enjoyed hanging out in the oratory. My friends and I played pool and ping pong,” said senior Matthew Casas. “I hope the senior board makes this a more regular thing.”

These privileges represent a culmination of the hard work completed by the senior class. Being four months from ringing the Victory Bell for the last time, many seniors grow reminiscent of their time at Bosco.

“These privileges reflect all of our hard work as class. At the same time, it is bittersweet as it serves as a reminder of our little time left at Bosco,” said Associated Student Body Co-President Tyler Baligad.

Life Of A Brave: St. Joseph’s High School Host Winter Formal Dance

by Carter Daley

After a relaxing Christmas Break, St. John Bosco and St. Joseph’s High Schools celebrated their Winter Formal Dance at The MODERN, a venue known for unparalleled views and private jet runways.

The MODERN is located on the top floor of the Sky Harbor Hanger giving a fantastic view of not only the city of Long Beach, but also the award-winning Long Beach Airport. The venue is most notably used for weddings.

The event began at 8pm on Saturday as students arrived in party buses and carpools. Upon entering, students were greeted by each school’s respective faculty as they checked in. Accompanied by two private elevators, the area also includes a lounge where students can dance, a center bar to serve food and beverages along with a terrace that overlooks the dance floor. The appearance of the venue allowed students to have a great time in a smaller environment. 

“Saint Joseph’s ASB Board wanted to take a more intimate and smaller approach to this year’s Winter Formal dance, as opposed to this year’s Homecoming Dance,” said Vice Principal of Student Affairs Ms. Jen Schnorr.

The Winter Formal Dance Planning Committee at Saint Joseph’s did an excellent job providing great food and beverages. Students were able to stay energized with iced coffee and blueberry grape lemonade. Sliders and fries were served as appetizers throughout the night. 

“We knew going into the dance the love of coffee St. Joseph’s and Bosco shared, so when we got the inspiration from the administration to bring in coffee. We decided on vanilla mocha. It was a way to keep people energized,” said St. Joseph’s Associated Student Body (ASB) President Xochitl Moreno.

Many St. John Bosco students brought dates to accompany them. Whether from St. Joseph’s or other schools around the area, many students had the opportunity to meet one another and enjoy a night of dancing.

A key highlight of the night came at the very end where students were offered milk and cookies. This was a sweet and savory treat to rap up a great night of excitement. 

“I didn’t have one but I saw a few teachers walking around with a big plate of cookies on top and a pitcher of milk under it. The whole thing made me laugh,” said senior Anthony Beyelia.

Chosen by St. Joseph’s ASB, DJ Brandon Wright kept the dance floor lively. Playing songs like the “Cupid Shuffle” and “Cha Cha Slide” kept students on their feet and happy to be around one another.

As St. John Bosco and St. Joseph’s students approach the last few months of the school year, they will continue to enjoy memories like these together as sisters and brothers.

Around Bosco: Bosco’s 3 vs. 3 Intramural Basketball Tournament Catches Buzz Across Campus

By: Brett Baligad, Senior Editor

During Winter Homecoming week, the Braves hosted their second annual Intramural Basketball Tournament. The finals took place last Friday in St. John Bosco’s Thunderdome during the Winter Sports Rally.

Photo by SJB Student Life

Basketball is in full swing on St. John Bosco’s campus. Despite the excitement surrounding the Braves’ varsity basketball team’s eight-game winning streak, it seems that Bosco’s second annual intramural basketball tournament has garnered the focus of the entire student body, who were fixated about who would come out on top. Founded in 2022 as the proverbial successor to “Bosco NBA,” the inaugural tournament featured the teachers, “The L.B. Dawgs,” winning it all, as they knocked off “Wavy Navy” in the finals.

In order to join, teams registered their three person roster, an alternate and a team name. From there, the bracket and game schedule were created. Executive Board Co-President Tyler Baligad was a major contributor to organizing the rosters.

“I know the student body really well and I wanted to make sure there were exciting first round matchups. By doing so, it would attract a lot of viewership over the two weeks, and I believe that was achieved. I also [felt] like we [had] a pretty solid group of teams heading into the Final Four,” Tyler said.

The tournament has taken place over two weeks leading up to the finals this Friday. With four rounds, the finals will take place in front of the student body at the Winter Sports Rally. The games are single elimination with all baskets being worth one point up until the finals where three pointers are awarded two points. Lastly, games are played with a fifteen minute game clock.

The Final Four teams included “Chadwell (Linda),” “Top 2 Not 2,” “Fantastic 3” and “The Teachers.”

“There have been a lot of close matchups and upsets coming into the final days of the tournament,” Tyler said. “Gutta Ave. vs. Teachers was decided by a buzz beater.”

Video by SJB Student Life

Chadwell (Linda), an all senior team, included Joaquin Ramirez, Anthony Rodriguez and Lanson DeGuia. Formerly known as “Smoothmobile,” the team entered in the inaugural tournament last year and made it to the Elite 8. Coached by varsity basketball senior Victor “Smooth” Murillo, Chadwell (Linda) lived and died shooting from behind the arc. Even with their relative lack in size going into the Final Four, the senior squad put on a show.

“I’m really excited that we went to the Final Four,” said senior Anthony Rodriguez of Chadwell (Linda). “My team was in the tournament last year, and I am happy we came back for another run.”

Top 2 Not 2 was another upperclassmen team in the Final Four. Featuring Bosco Football varsity quarterback Caleb Sanchez, as well as Dillon Rickenbacker and Jack Nyman, size was a huge advantage for the squad. Top 2 Not 2 came in hot with an impressive victory over “Only Wins” and would defeat Chadwell (Linda) in the Final Four on Thursday.

The Teachers, the third team in the Final Four, went on a notable but heartbreaking run. Coming into the tournament as the reigning champions, the Teachers had a lot of pressure to go back-to-back. The squad featured Dean of Students Mr. Jon-Paul Masciel, Entrepreneurship Pathway Coordinator Mr. Shane Beatty and Religion Teacher Mr. Juan-Pedro Garcia-Esparza.

The Teachers were battle tested coming into the Final Four after defeating the notorious “Gutta Ave.” with a buzzer beater on Wednesday. Unfortunately, they fell short to the red hot Fantastic 3 in the Final Four, which some attributed to the injury Mr. Masciel sustained in Wednesday’s game against Gutta Ave.

The Fantastic 3 was the final team that was in the Final Four. The team was not one to take lightly, as they produced convincing wins against the “Chess Club” and the “Robotic’s Drive Team” coming into the semifinals. Fronted by juniors Will Mckissick, Corey McFarland and Xzavion Elder, The Fantastic 3 went on a deep run, but ultimately they fell short in the finals against Top 2 Not 2 after defeating the Teachers in the Final Four on Thursday.

Friday’s game did not disappoint. With a dominating interior performance by Caleb Sanchez and Top 2 Not 2, they routed The Fantastic 3. With a 15-8 victory for the squad, Dillon Rickenbacker felt that the tournament was “too easy for him.”

With plenty of action and highlights, the Oratory’s playground was in full effect with the competitive spirit of the tournament bringing the Brave community together.

Sports: 2022 CIF State And National Champions Sign National Letters Of Intent

by Christian Angel, Managing Editor

The CIF State and National Champion St. John Bosco Braves continue to excel as the number one team in the nation by MaxPreps, as twelve senior student-athletes signed National Letters of Intent over the Christmas break to compete and study at schools across the nation.

Photo by @boscofootball (Twitter)

The twelve student-athletes who signed on Wednesday, December 21 were:

DL Vaka Amasio-Hansen, San Jose State University
LB Deven Bryant, University of Washington (Early Enrollee)
QB Pierce Clarkson, University of Louisville (Early Enrollee)
CB Jshawn Frausto-Ramos, Stanford University
OL Sean Haney, Colgate
S RJ Jones, UCLA
S Ty Lee, UCLA
WR Jahlil McClain, University of Louisville
DB Hunter Nowell, San Jose State University
WR Israel Polk, University of Pittsburgh (Early Enrollee)
TE/DE Matayo Uiagalelei, University of Oregon (Early Enrollee)
CB Aaron Mikey Williams, University of Louisville

This signing day was special to Bosco Football, as many of the student-athletes who signed shared how this signing day was very heartfelt and special. Many thanked their parents, family members, coaches, trainers and all those who helped them get to where they are. Many of them shared their personal journeys.

For many of them and their families, it was a sacrifice coming to Bosco with the process of getting into their dream universities and making the ultimate decisions for the upcoming years. For many, it was not easy, but the student-athletes proved how hard they work on and off the field. This can be credited to the opportunities they have had at Bosco.

Safety Ty Lee, who signed to UCLA thanked all the Bosco Football coaches and staff. Notably, he gave thanks to Coach Chris King for being a mentor and friend while allowing him to be a leader for the defense. Ty also thanked Mrs. Jessie Christensen for being the backbone of the Bosco Football program and teaching him to be a great person on and off the field.

Defensive lineman Vaka Hansen thanked the two most important people in his life: his parents. He thanks his dad for being the reason he fell in love with football and inspiring him to be the best man he can be. He credits his mom, although she could not attend, for working hard everyday to put food on the table. Through this love and support, Vaka’s value of family within a team is what ultimately led him to San Jose State University.

“I really love the family environment. Coach Seumalo was a reason why I went there, as he coached NFL player Stephen Paea… and I think that is a great place for me to playing with Coach Brennan, he is a really good head coach and looks like a really good father figure for me,” said Vaka.

Unfortunately, tight end and defensive end Matayo Uiagalelei was not able to be present at the ceremony. Matayo had been hospitalized due to a blood transfusion and was recovering at home. In his place, Coach Jason Negro announced Matayo’s commitment to the University of Oregon.

“I have never had an opportunity to announce where I’m going… so I’m going to take full advantage of this and I’m going to do this right. Ready? The University of Oregon,” said Coach Negro.

Shortly after National Signing Day, WR Deandre Moore Jr. announced his commitment and officially signed to the University of Texas at Austin. Deandre picked the Longhorns over the University of Louisville and University of Georgia.

Many Bosco Football’s student-athletes will sign in early February for the second round of signees. For many St. John Bosco student-athletes who are still uncommitted in a variety of sports, many of them will continue to achieve their dreams and find places to continue their academic and athletic careers.

A+E: The Best Films of 2022, Cult Classics vs. Mainstream Masterpieces

by Mark Lutke

These films from 2022 reflect several elements of what makes film great – beautiful artistry, powerful messaging and, occasionally, satisfying blockbusters that serve as great eye candy.

  1. Cult Classic – Vortex – Gaspar Noé

This movie by French director Gaspar Noé focuses on an elderly couple suffering from dementia. They use various medications to cope with their crumbling reality, in which their son is the only family who they can remember. He tries to take care of them but is held back by drug-problems of his own.

Instead of the descent-into-madness thriller that Noé is known for, this movie serves more as a descent-into-madness drama. That is to say that it makes the viewer think about their own life, rather than just going along for the ride.

For some less-seasoned viewers, it may come across as slow, but for many, it will catalyze the existential crisis that serious film-goers crave.

  1. Mainstream Masterpiece – The Banshees of Inisherin – Martin McDonaugh

By all metrics, The Banshees of Inisherin is the most visually beautiful film on this list. Its story is solid, but its cinematography is where it truly shines. 

The film takes viewers on a trip to 1920’s Ireland in the midst of civil war. But this film isn’t about battle strategies or history, rather it’s about the relationships between its characters, who all live on an island.

When Colm (Brendan Gleeson) severs his lifelong friendship with Pádriac (Colin Farrell), each of these character’s worlds begin to change. Pádriac is understandably distraught and much of his character arc is about developing a backbone and learning to live without Colm’s approval.

Pádriac’s sister, Siobhán (Kerry Condon), also has her own plot line. Her story demonstrates the mental and emotional impact that living on an island can have on a person, as well as the effects of finding oneself in isolation.

The Banshees of Inisherin has something to offer for everybody.

Whether one wants a humanistic take on island life, or to be dazzled by beautiful cinematography, this film will undeniably sit well with the masses. Which is why it came as no surprise when it took home three Golden Globe awards (Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, Best Actor (Farrell) Musical or Comedy, and Best Screenplay)

  1. Cult Classic – We’re All Going to the World’s Fair – Jane Shoenbrun

Jane Schoenbrun (Collective: Unconscious and The Eyeslicer) has already achieved cult status among fans and critics alike. This is all the more impressive when one considers that they have only released one full-length film. 

We’re All Going To The World’s Fair is a psychological horror-drama that showcases a descent into abstractions and surrealism. It explores themes of isolation, gender identity and existential dread, which Schoenbrun catalyzes with Black Mirror-esque social commentary primarily focused on the isolating effect of technology. 

Alongside these elements stands Anna Cobb’s unassuming yet jarring performance as Casey, a lonesome teenager whose primary motivation is human connection in a lonesome and unaccepting world. To achieve this Casey joins an online role-playing horror game in an attempt to find excitement and adventure. Instead, she is met by JLB (portrayed by Michael J. Rodgers of Beyond the Black Rainbow ). JLB is a sadistic predator who tries to take advantage of Casey’s isolated state. 

We’re All Going To The World’s Fair portrays the internet as a manipulative cesspit full of consumption-driven false promises. This depiction rings true to many who have praised the film’s brutally honest and realistic tone.

Herein lies the essence of We’re all Going to the World’s Fair, a cautionary tale about the dangers of being a disaffected youth with unrestricted internet access and living in a world that seeks to turn everyone and everything into a commodity.

  1. Mainstream Masterpiece – Nope – Jordan Peele  

Perhaps no modern American filmmaker is more misunderstood on a than Jordan Peele. His newest film, Nope, is no exception. Many have theorized about this movies’ meaning and many subplots, as there is no discernable connection between story threads on a first viewing.

However, if one looks at Nope as a critique of blockbusters and spectacle, interpreting it becomes a far easier task. In a world full of Superhero movies and shallow action flicks, like Top Gun: Maverick), Nope brings some much needed nuance to the modern blockbuster. The movie’s apparent lack of depth can be deceiving, but it is through this lack of depth that Jordan Peele is able to craft compelling themes. If the movie was less abstract, it wouldn’t be as fun to pick apart.

Furthermore, Daniel Kaluya’s performance as OJ is reminiscent of the stoic personalities often seen in many Western protagonists. This could be seen as Peele referencing the Westerns that shaped the spectacle of old. It could also be seen as a subversion of stereotypical racial dynamics by placing a black actor in a role similar to that of a John Wayne performance (performances that are often portrayed by white male actors, specifically).

Whatever one’s take on Nope is. It is undeniable that Jordan Peele is a master provocateur of serious and productive discussions through cinema.

Around Bosco: The Black Student Union Will Host Their First Annual Cookout

by Noah Dawson

The St. John Bosco’s Black Student Union (BSU) cordially invites everyone to their inaugural BSU Cookout event, an occasion to celebrate the diversity and culture of the greater community.

Get ready for a day of fun and food on February 4th, as the cookout event marks a unique opportunity for members from across the Bosco community and beyond to come to participate in games, eat food and connect with students from across the Los Angeles area and celebrating the strength of different cultures.

From 2-4:00 pm, the event is open exclusively to Bosco students and faculty, as the Brave family will be treated to an array of mouthwatering Cajun dishes from local caterers that represent black culture and business in partnership with Black on the Block. There will also be side dishes, such as potato salad, coleslaw and baked beans. The event opens to the public starting at 4:00 pm and ending at 8:00 pm. Food will be still be available to purchase during that timespan for those non-Bosco attendees and latecomers.

Following food, there will be an array of games and activities. This includes a three-legged race and a water balloon toss sponsored by St. Joseph’s High School’s Black Student Association. The night will conclude with a showing of the film Do the Right Thing.

“We are incredibly excited to be partnering with St. Joseph’s to make this happen. This is going to be such an amazing opportunity for all of the black students from different schools to come together, meet each other and form partnerships for years to come,” said BSU faculty moderator Mrs. Michelle Dolphin.

The excitement is palpable, as students, teachers and staff eagerly await the cookout in the school’s Mary Help of Christians Quad.

“I am beyond thrilled that we are hosting our first-ever cookout,” said counselor Alyssa Skipper. “Celebrating different cultures and putting our amazing Black Student Union at the forefront is so important for our school community. This is going to be a fantastic event that brings everyone together.”

This is an incredible opportunity for the Bosco BSU to bring together students from different schools to celebrate our diversity and culture. The Bosco BSU will welcome peers from other schools, such as Harvard-Westlake, Loyola and Marymount to the cookout.

“I can’t wait for the cookout! It’s going to be an amazing time, and the people are going to be great. I’m looking forward to all the delicious food, the games and just hanging out with friends,” said senior Ryan Simien.

At the cookout, the Bosco BSU will be offering pre-orders for limited edition t-shirts and hoodies. These items will only be available for pre-order at the cookout, so don’t miss out on the opportunity to own a piece of St. John Bosco history.

“The energy behind this student organization is truly exciting,” said Principal Dr. Kris Anderson. “With its purpose to empower, teach, discuss and uplift the experiences of our students, I see a great opportunity for students to advocate for themselves and others. This cookout is going to be a fantastic representation of that energy and support.”

*Editor’s Note: Noah Dawson serves as President of St. John Bosco’s Black Student Union.

Sports: Bosco Basketball Knocks Off The “Team In Red” On The Road In Historic Trinity League Victory

By Brett Baligad, Senior Editor, & Isaac Mays, Sports Editor

After a blowout win against Servite High School, Bosco Basketball managed to hold on to a late game thriller in Santa Ana against the “Team In Red,” giving them a share of the top spot in the Trinity League. The victory marked the first time the Braves knocked off the “Team in Red” on their home floor and the first time the “Team in Red” has lost a league home game since 1998.

Last Friday, the Braves hit the road to Orange County to face Trinity League rival, the “Team In Red.” The much anticipated matchup featured at the time a 15-3 Braves squad coming off two commanding wins against Servite High School and San Ysidro High School. Mater Dei came into the matchup with a 13-2 record and a six game winning streak. 

The Braves and the Monarchs have a notorious rivalry across all boys high school sports. The last time the Braves beat the “Team In Red” this year was at the Rose Bowl in the CIF-SS Football Championship, 24-22. With that in mind, the Braves basketball team have had their rivalry matchup circled on their calendars for months.

“We’ve been thinking about that game all year,” said sophomore guard Elzie Harrington. “Everything we did leading up to that game, we just told ourselves that we could beat them, and we thought that it would be an upset if we lost.”

Early on in the game, the Braves found themselves trading buckets to keep themselves competitive. It would be sophomore Kade Bonam’s 11-point first quarter coupled by three shots behind the arc that would help push the Braves to a 19-19 first quarter. Bonam stands at 6’ 7” and weighs in at 205 pounds, and with a high level of post work, Bonam confidently uses his frame to dominate the interior.

With zero points coming off the bench during the entirety of the game, the Braves would begin to slow down heading into halftime. Paired with an impressive 13 point quarter from the home team’s freshman Luke Barnett, the Braves found themselves trailing 30-37 heading into the locker room at the half.

“It’s hard playing at Mater Dei. it’s like everything is against you there with their home court advantage. You’re going to get a slow spurt in the game, but we stuck together and got through it,” said junior guard and Loyola University of Chicago commit Jack Turner.

With the leadership of Head Coach Matt Dunn and the support of sophomore Elzie Harrington’s 14-point second half, the Braves forced a late 63-57 lead. Harrington’s ability to get teammates involved once again demonstrated leadership to show why he deserves the number one ranking in California and twelfth in the nation for the class of 2025.

“I’ve been trying to find different ways to contribute. We have people that can score. So yes, I want to shoot, but I know I can get rebounds and can I assist my teammates,” said Elzie Harrington.

Through a few late misses by the Braves and a plethora of free throws by the “Team In Red”, the home team went on a run to push the game to 63-63 down the stretch. It would be a knockdown jumper by Harrington and late game free throws by Turner, who scored 15 points in the game, resulting in the Braves taking the 67-64 final score. Even with two solid late game looks by the “Team In Red,” the Braves defense stood tall to hold off their greatest rival.

“At the end of the game, the team got the ball in my hands to shoot the free throws. They had confidence in me, and I had confidence in myself, so I just knocked them down,” said Turner. 

Last Friday’s historic win gave Bosco co-ownership for the top spot of the Trinity League with Santa Margarita. The Brave’s matchup against Santa Margarita is slated for next Wednesday in the Thunderdome at 7:30 pm.

“I think we can go undefeated in the league because we won that game at Mater Dei by 3 and we didn’t even play the best we could,” said senior guard and captain Delyle Williams. “We had a lot of mistakes that we made and if we just cleaned those up I feel like we could beat anyone”.

News/Op-Ed: Pope Benedict XVI’s Impact on the Salesian Community

by Connor Sheehan, Editor-in-Chief

The reluctant pontificate has passed away, and as the Catholic world grieves the loss of the Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, his colorful papacy leaves a strong impact on the Salesian order and community.

Photo by Kai Pfaffenbach/Reuters

Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger, the birthname of Pope Benedict XVI, was one of the more controversial and complex popes of the 21st century. A fierce defender of Catholic tradition, he fought for cornerstones of the faith such as the doctrine and the liturgy. 

Pope Benedict’s resignation in February 2013, is notable for being the first modern pope in six centuries to resign since Pope Gregory XII, who was, unlike Benedict, forced to resign from the papacy. 

He began his faith journey in the midst of World War II. Seeing his family forced into Nazism, he developed a disdain for fascism and grew strong in his Catholic faith. He served as a teacher, like St. John Bosco, of young minds as a professor of Theology at the University of Bonn, the University of Tubingen and the University of Regensburg for the first decades of his time as a priest.

Pope Benedict believed that education was vital, as he saw places of Catholic education as “a place to encounter the living God who in Jesus Christ reveals his transforming love and truth.”

Indeed, Pope Benedict believed that Salesians play a critical and active role in the education of Catholic youth throughout the world. Addressing the Salesian Order, he praised the tradition that Don Bosco pioneered when he stated, “The special tenderness and commitment to young people… are characteristic of Don Bosco’s charism.”

Pope Benedict, indeed, held a great love for Don Bosco. He addressed the saint as a “shining example of a life marked by apostolic zeal” and praised his motto of “give me souls, take away the rest.”

St. John Bosco students can see that motto everyday on the outer wall of the pool written in Latin and facing the stadium parking lot.

Like we emphasize in Salesianity, Pope Benedict was a strong advocate of the arts as a core aspect of the Catholic faith tradition and a device for the expression of those traditions.

“The great music born in the Church makes the truth of our faith audible and perceivable,” Pope Benedict said.

The pope undoubtedly held the Salesians in high regard, seen when he humbly spoke of his stay at a Salesian Parish, St. Paul, in Luanda, Angola, when they celebrated mass there in 2009.

“Finally, let me offer a particular greeting to the Salesian community and the faithful of this parish of Saint Paul; they have welcomed us to their church, without hesitating to yield the place which is usually theirs in the liturgical assembly. I know that they are gathered in the field next door, and I hope, at the end of this Eucharist, to see them and give them my blessing, but even now I say to them: ‘Many thanks! May God raise up in you, and through you, many apostles modeled on your Patron,” said Pope Benedict.

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVII lies at rest in the Monastero Mater Ecclesiae in the Vatican City.

The Salesian Community offers the same greeting to the Pope Emeritus Benedict – may God raise him up and the apostolic lineage continue to be strong. Requiescat in pace, Papa. 

« Older Entries