Swimming Continues to Roll Against Westminster

Thomas Pitney

Sports Editor

 

On Saturday, Nov. 13, both the women’s and men’s swimming and diving teams were determined to keep their undefeated 2-0 records as they took on the Titans of Westminster College at Timken Natatorium. The women asserted their dominance early and often to defeat the Titans 199-85. Meanwhile, the men won in a nail-biter by a score of 153-145.

The women’s team set the tone immediately in the first event — the 400-yard medley relay — as the team of Hallie Findlan ’25, Ollie Bream ’25, Molly Likins ’22 and Emma Connors ’24 finished in first place and the team of Mia Chen ’22, Kay Wetmore ’23, Maddie Becker ’24 and Mariam Zayour ’24 finished in second place. From there, Wooster did not let its foot off the gas, winning every individual swimming event. Wetmore’s mentality in her victory in the 100-yard butterfly demonstrated the Scots’ relentless effort. “I tried to approach the event with the mindset of giving the event everything I had left, since it was my last individual event of the meet, which I felt really helped me to win the event.”

 

This mentality allowed a slew of Scots to win individual events: Madison Whitman ’22 won the 1000-yard freestyle with a time of 11:35.72; Connors reigned supreme in the 200-yard freestyle with a time of 2:02.78; Becker finished the 100-yard backstroke in 1:03.60 and the 100-yard individual medley (IM) in 1:03.80 to capture victory in both events; Likins defeated the field in the 100-yard and 200-yard breaststroke events with respective times of 1:08.59 and 2:32.02; Bream triumphed in the 200-yard butterfly and 500-yard freestyle with times of 2:13.90 and 5:30.69; Findlan conquered the 50-yard and 100-yard freestyle races in 24.53 and 54.09 respectively; and in the last individual event, the 200-yard backstroke, Zayour’s time of 2:20.03 allowed her to capture first prize.

 

Wooster carried its momentum to cap off a stellar team performance with the 200-yard freestyle relay, in which Findlan, Wetmore, Connors and Bream teamed up to take first prize while Chen Min Kim ’23, Emma Bossaert ’22 and Carol Maag ’23 finished in third place. Wetmore credited the whole swimming team for their success in the relay, saying that “everyone was cheering us on for this last event and I believe that really helped us to finish the meet strong and ultimately win the relay!”

 

While the women ran away with a victory, the men’s team was engaged in a heated battle with the Titans, as both teams matched each other blow-for-blow. However, the Scots embraced the pressure. Josh Pearson ’24 said that “we really wanted to stay undefeated, so there was added pressure, but everyone was able to use it to their advantage and swim fast races.” For Tucker Andrewjeski ’25, “the feeling of racing in a close meet is extremely fun. The pressure is high, the swim team is loud and it creates better swims for each of us.” 

Though Westminster emerged victorious in both the 400-yard medley relay and the 200-yard freestyle relay, the Scots bounced back in the individual events to secure a tight victory. In particular, Andrewjeski, Pearson and Isaac Shaker ’25 shined for Wooster. Andrewjeski dominated the 1000-yard freestyle, finishing the race in 10:16.90, and narrowly won the 200-yard backstroke with a time of 2:22.35. Pearson stepped up to win the 200-yard freestyle in 1:49.78 and the 100 IM in 55.46. Shaker attained solid victories in both the 200-yard butterfly and the 500 freestyle with his respective times of 2:01.88 and 5:00.15.

Up by a score of 147-134 going into the final 200-yard freestyle relay event, the Scots needed a third place finish to tie and a second place finish to win the meet. The team of Shaker, Ryan Gross ’25, Graham Letkeman ’23 and Zach Fickes ’25 removed any doubt of a Wooster victory, finishing in second place with a time of 1:31.43.

The performances by both teams reinforced the Scots’ confidence and optimism for the rest of the season. Wetmore believes that “we will definitely continue to be very competitive throughout the rest of the season. We have great depth on the women’s team, which ultimately helps us score points and win events, and I believe we will continue to get faster as the season continues!” Pearson pointed out that “lots of people have put up solid times already and everyone is showing improvement as we move into the season. Especially with our mid-season invite coming up, which we will be resting up for, I think there are definitely big things on the horizon for this team.”

The Scots look to continue their undefeated seasons on Friday, Nov. 19 at 6:30 p.m. when they travel to Alliance, OH to take on the University of Mount Union Purple Raiders. 

Cross Country Finishes Strong at Regionals

Jonathan Logan

Co-Editor-in-Chief

 

On Saturday, Nov. 13, the College of Wooster women’s and men’s cross country teams competed at the NCAA Division III Great Lakes Regional Championships. The meet was held in Shelbyville, IN. The course, Blue River Cross Country Course, is a national level running facility that hosts 3K through 8K courses.

Placing 13th out of 37 teams, the women’s team put up its best regional performance since 2006 when the Scots finished in 12th place. The men’s team came in 28th out of 37 teams. The women’s race was a 6K event, while the men’s event was an 8K.

Wooster’s top three harriers, Isabelle Hoover ’22, Athena Tharenos ’24 and Kayla Bertholf ’22, all finished within the top 60 of the 266-deep field, and were also honored as All-NCAC runners prior to the regional championships. Hoover, who won the NCAC title in the 10,000 meter track and field event in the spring, finished with a time of 23:15.6, which saw her place 46th. Tharenos crossed at 23:24.2 and finished 55th. Bertholf, a senior and captain of the team, finished with a time of 23:26.6 in 58th place.

Bertholf, who has raced in regional meets with Wooster before, said that the atmosphere at these championships is “always high-energy” thanks to the “spectators screaming for their athletes and the teams knowing they will have to give it their all.” Bertholf’s time broke her seasonal personal record (PR) on a 6K course, and many others on the team also turned in seasonal bests or PR times. Bertholf added that “although we did not make it to the national level, I know each girl gave it their all. It was a hard race with great competition.”

Also placing for the Scots was first-year Dylan Kretchmar and senior Rachel Osterhouse with times of 23:36.8 and 25:52.1 respectively. Additionally, first-years Jessica Breth and Elise Greenwald debuted at the regional level, running the Blue River course in 25:55.4 and 26:55.2. Osterhouse’s time was good enough to break her old seasonal-best time and Breth’s time gave her a new overall PR. Kretchmar and Greenwald also set their own PR’s. 

The men’s team was led by Will Callender ’25, who just this season had broken the team course record for the 4K race in his first ever collegiate race. Callender placed 111th on Saturday with a time of 27:05 on the 8K course. Ben Nichols, also a first-year, posted a time of 27:25.6 in his first regional race at the collegiate level. Nichols rounded out the top-half of the 266-runner field with a 130th place finish.

Finishing in third and fourth respectively for the Scots were first years Drew Robertson and Eric Johnson with times of 27:59.5 and 28:03.6. Duncan Hardy ’24 finished next with a time of 28:34.9, followed by senior Alex DeLong and sophomore Mitch Ecklund. DeLong crossed the finish line at 28:47.9 and Ecklund at 29:06.4.

Callender, who has finished first in every race for Wooster this season, reflected on Saturday’s events, saying, “the team’s approach was to go out and run a good race, leave everything on the course.” The men’s team is very young, and Callender said that this regional appearance was also about “getting experience running 8Ks.” Overall, Callender was “super proud of how the team has done,” and was “thrilled with how [his] season went this year.”

Bertholf, who ran her last race at these regionals, had nothing but fond memories to reflect on. “My time on the team has given me some of my favorite memories and best friends. I cherish the early morning long runs and [the] understanding we share in races and workouts.” She added, “I cannot wait to see more growth and to see [the team] advance in championship meets in the upcoming years.”

Bite-Size Sports – November 19th

Langston Hood

Sports Editor

 

A Strange Week in the NFL

Week 10 featured a variety of wonky headlines as “Super” Cam Newton returned to the Carolina Panthers and led them to a blowout win over the NFC-leading Arizona Cardinals. Other interesting results included the winless Detroit Lions tying the Pittsburgh Steelers 16-16 for the first tie of the season. The New England Patriots laid waste to the Cleveland Browns in a 45-7 blowout, while the Dallas Cowboys demolished the Atlanta Falcons in similar fashion 43-3. The Tennessee TItans continued their winning ways, reigning supreme in a nail biting 23-21 win over the New Orleans Saints. The Miami Dolphins also notched a surprising win over the Baltimore Ravens, winning 22-10. 

Source: ESPN.com

 

NWSL Championship Game Set

Sunday, Nov. 14th, played host to the NWSL semifinals as the Portland Thorns and OL Reign fell to the Chicago Red Stars and Washington Spirit, respectively. These results came as a surprise as both the Thorns and Reign were the top two seeds coming into the playoffs. The Reign seemed to be on their way to victory as Eugénie Le Sommer finished off a Megan Rapinoe pass in just the third minute, however the Spirit stormed back to earn their place in the championship. Despite being outshot, the Chicago Red Stars ousted the league’s top team 2-0 to punch their ticket to Saturday’s championship game. 

Source: NWSL.com

 

NCAA Constitution Changes 

On Monday, Nov. 15th, the NCAA held a meeting to announce their newest constitution, which will be up for approval in January. Among the noteworthy changes to the constitution are the support of student-athletes profiting off of their name, image, and likeness, which signals a long-awaited shift in the NCAA’s stance against such actions. Additionally, the constitution opposes treating athletes like salaried employees, while cutting the NCAA Board of Governors from 21 to nine, one of which will include a former college athlete. Most notably, the new legislation will allow each division the “authority and autonomy” to restructure themselves as they please. 

Source: The Washington Post

Horoscopes

Jenelle Booker

Contributing Writer

 

If you think things have been intense lately, you’re right, and the stars say so too! Here’s a quick guide to the astrological transits this week, featuring the start of our eclipse season–the Taurus Lunar Eclipse happening TODAY!

Lunar Eclipse along Taurus-Scorpio Axis – Occurring at exactly 3:57am ETS, this partial lunar eclipse will exaggerate the effects of the already influential Taurus Full Moon. Illuminating the night, full moons bring attention to the deeply repressed. Although this can be a very emotional time, the full moon forces you to release, and therefore, to heal. So, as a lunar eclipse, this is a great time to hurdle over your greater roadblocks and even jumpstart your life, especially in areas ruled by Taurus and Scorpio.

For those with Sun, Moon, and/or Rising in Taurus, Scorpio, Aquarius, and Leo (but especially for my Tauruses and Scorpios) your energy is likely to be eclipsed as well–be sure to prioritize your rest! 

This is a great time to set intentions to transform or manifest in the areas of your life ruled by Taurus (finance, diet, safety and security, values) and Scorpio (shared finances, credit/loans, inheritance, relationships, sexuality, death or near-death, personal rituals).

Sun, Mercury, and Mars in Scorpio – The DRAMA! Scorpio is notoriously intense and investigative, dissatisfied with the superficial. The Sun’s placement in Scorpio sets our overarching focus on the hidden and the secret. With Mercury, the planet ruling our everyday communication and thought processes, we are likely to be more single-minded during this time. The planet of action, aggression, and sex, Mars, supplements Sun and Mercury with heightened passion and stamina. Our intense focus below the superficial is even more exaggerated by Jupiter and Saturn in Aquarius, which are what astrologers call a T-Square (90-degree angle) to the planets in Scorpio. Square aspects are hot-headed, and often inspire disagreement and action. Adding icing to our already enhanced cake, Uranus in Taurus is opposite (180-degrees) to Mars and Mercury, bringing about the eruptive release of anything constrained in the past, especially startling facts, opinions (Mercury). As a more positive aspect, the opposition will be, inevitably, for our personal and our collective improvement. This week will be eventful, to say the least, but the energy and action will help move things forward!

With Mercury in Scorpio, be conscious of your thoughts, as they are likely to be very obsessive during this time, often inspiring jealousy, vindictiveness, and manipulation. Scorpio placements are likely to be the topic of gossip at this time. Stay off of YikYak.

With Mars in Scorpio, direct your focus to the projects or areas of your life that are lacking. This is also a great time to dedicate more energy to the areas of life ruled by Scorpio. You are likely to feel physically renewed by Scorpio-related activities, such as sex.

Venus in Capricorn – Venus will be doing the heavy lifting this week to keep things slow and reserved. As the planet that rules our adoration, values, love and personal aesthetics, Venus in Capricorn makes us more likely to place value on the people or things that are more practical, reliable and enduring. This applies to our romantic attraction as well, as we are likely to be more attracted to “traditional” or reserved people during this time. Capricorn placements may be particularly attractive. In the sign of social status, professionalism, and discipline, Venus places a rosy veil over the areas of career and institutions, making it easier to negotiate and connect with your superiors and peers. This will go well to balance the explosive energy this month.

This is a great time to get ahead in anything related to career, formal education, or institutions/organizations. Ask for that recommendation! Superiors are more likely to bestow favors or become mentors. Get back on LinkedIn and go to office hours.

Generally, this is a good time to give yourself some alone time and drop into your emotions. Ruling our more day-to-day activities, the Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, and Venus are encouraging you to make a serious judgement on what aspects in your life can endure the long term. Habits, perspectives, and relationships that are detrimental or aren’t in your best interest will be snatched away, so try not to be too attached during this time. It’s for the best! All in all, this month will allow us as individuals, as well as a collective, to transform to our greater selves.

(For those desiring an individualized horoscope, look to where these planets fall on your birth chart.)

(Creative)

My Lost Love

Alice Pinney ’32

Contributing Writer

 

Please, let me relive this sad, sad story. I promise that it’s true. It started about four years ago, when I was walking home from a day at my friend Cal’s house. Cal was, and still is, my bestest friend. She is amazing. I had so much fun at her house! But, anyway, I was walking home and it started to drip.

Drip, drip, drip.

(I walked a bit faster.)

Then to drop.

Drip, drop, drip, drop.

(I could hear the hiss of the water. I ran home.)

Then to rain.

Hisssssssss.

(I ran under the nearest tree.)

It was pouring.

SHHHHHHH

I sighed. It looked like I would have to hide from the rain under a tree for a while. Suddenly, I saw a figure with an umbrella running down the lane. When I looked closer, I saw it was Cal! Cal would save me! She came over, panting, and said, “I didn’t want you to get soaked.”

There was a weird feeling inside of me and it made my stomach flutter. I moved under the umbrella. 

“Thank you so much.”

She looked at me closely.

“Of course.”

I blushed and moved closer.

“You know, you’re really amazing Cal.”

She blushed and moved closer.

“Thanks, you know, you are, too.”

Our noses were almost touching now. We looked at each other, and little did I know, she felt the same feeling in her stomach too. Suddenly, I felt very, and randomly, brave. 

Our lips touched.

 

Three years later, we had been dating secretly for, well, three years. It was World War II, but I still did the normal things I did. One day, I was washing my clothes when she ran into the house crying.

“What is it?” I screamed.

“My-my parents!” She cried, “Are taking me away! Because of the war! They say that this country isn’t safe for me anymore! I don’t even know where we’re going! And, I don’t want to leave you!” 

She collapsed in my arms, crying and I was crying too. Her parents suddenly barged in and dragged her out the door. Not even looking at me. Just dragged her. 

“We’re going,” tThey said, “You said your goodbye.”

She screamed, “NOOOO!”

I yelled, “I’ll find you! Even if it’s in heaven! I. WILL. FIND. YOU.”

She held her hand out to me, but was dragged out the door. 

I stood for a second, wishing she would come back, but I never saw her, ever again. And I knew that. And those feelings hurt me so much that my body couldn’t deal with it. Everything went black. 

Now, I wait for her spirit to come to me. One day.

The author can be reached for comment through her sister Lark at lpinney23@wooster.edu

(Creative)

Fifteen New Businesses Introduced in Downtown Wooster

Samuel Boudreau

News Editor

 

While virtually finishing her bachelor’s degree at the University of Akron in March 2020, Nicole Norris, a Wooster native, had to find a caffeinated drink to help her stay awake to finish her assignments. After searching through Facebook, Norris found a Dalgona coffee recipe, made it and loved it. “My son was very vocal about me selling the coffee,” said Norris, “so I put up a post on Facebook about delivering the coffee and it took off.” Norris’ coffee was so popular that on Sept. 10, 2020, she opened up Whippt Dalgona Coffee in downtown Wooster. Whippt Coffee is one of the 15 businesses to start up in downtown Wooster during the pandemic.

“It is my job to not only make one of the best cups of coffee you’ll ever taste, but it’s also my job to educate you about what it is. So Dalgona coffee doesn’t just offer a different cup of coffee, it offers a really different experience,” Norris said. 

Despite massive economic downturn and staffing shortages due to the pandemic, Wooster saw a proliferation of fifteen small businesses in the downtown area. The new businesses include Grigio Wine & Cocktail Bar, Son Apothecary, B. Radiant Lash, Wooster Nutrition, Boba Bowl, Whippt Dalgona Coffee, Boo Bear Brews, Sole Purpose, Bleach Custom Hairdressing, RE/MAX, Cookie Snob, Meraki Artistry Permanent Cosmetics, Studio 217, Addison Scott Hair Company and Blackbird Records.

However, downtown Wooster also lost four small businesses during the pandemic, including Everything Rubbermaid, a Wooster staple for nearly three decades, who closed their doors on April 29, 2021. The Rubbermaid location will be replaced by E&H Hardware.

When asked her thoughts on the number of new locations in downtown Wooster during the pandemic, Shannon Waller, Executive Director of Main Street Wooster, said, “It honestly took me by surprise.” 

Waller said that the pandemic led many people to pursue their entrepreneurial dreams through business endeavors. “What it seems to be is people who really had to take a hard look at their priorities when the pandemic hit and decided that if they want to go after a dream, they really should not waste any more time,” she said. 

Norris agrees with Waller. “Whippt Coffee would not be here if it was not for a pandemic,” said Norris. “This is not something that I probably would have gotten into.””

Norris, whose grandfather owned a local barbershop in Wooster during the 1970s, pointed out Wooster’s unique history of small businesses. “Wooster has always had a lot of small businesses and entrepreneurs, like Freedlanders,” Norris said, “so historically Wooster has been known to be one of the easier places to open a business.” 

Another new business in downtown Wooster is Blackbird Records, Wooster’s premiere record store. Blackbird Records’ location is the home of Wooster’s previous record store, Lucky Records, but Josh Lehman, owner of Operation Fandom, bought the store from Lucky Records owner, Dave Rodgers, and rebranded the store to “Blackbird.” While Blackbird opened their doors on March 5, 2020, the record store had to delay their grand opening due to the pandemic. 

“Our store and our goal is to make it all inclusive,” said Lehman. “We try to appeal to young and old through all different genres.” Blackbird Records offers a wide array of vinyl records, speakers, turntables and other music accessories. 

Nick Harling ’22, said he greatly enjoys Blackbird Records’ ambiance and music selection. 

“As both a music lover and a student, I love Blackbird,” he said. “It’s therapeutic to explore their eclectic inventory, and chat about my purchases with the owners. It’s a really pleasant place to visit.”

Along with Harling, Lehman said that his stores, Operation Fandom and Blackbird Records, have seen an increase in visits from College students. “Since things opened back up, I think we’re seeing an uptick in College students coming down on Saturdays,” Lehman said. “I think there is a bigger attraction to coming downtown, because you have a fandom store, record store, Sure House Coffee and Boba Bowl, so there is a good draw to get people off campus and come downtown.”

While some students are able to visit downtown Wooster to enjoy the new businesses in the area, Waller said that Main Street Wooster would like to see more students in the area, citing transportation as an obstacle for students. “We would really like to make it a lot easier for students to access downtown,” said Waller, “so we are trying to figure out if there is an easier way to get students to and from downtown.” 

On Nov. 19, from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m., Main Street Wooster will host downtown’s “Wooster Window Wonderland,” an annual event where community members can enjoy Holiday festivities and downtown businesses. “This is a tradition that we have had in downtown Wooster for a couple of decades,” said Waller, “and we are really excited to go back to the historical program that we have offered, because the restrictions on gatherings have been lifted somewhat.” 

The event is downtown Wooster’s largest annual event, as nearly 5,000 community members enjoy the festivities. The event is free to the public. 

“We know that Wooster is a strong community,” said Waller. “The economic crisis and the pandemic really showcased how strong it is, as we were able to have this positive growth during this chaotic time.” 

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