Volume 31



Middle School Dodgeball Tournament

Ezekiel Baum ’26
Head of Middle School Jon Wimbish of the Cross Country Runners defeats Jim Coleman of Team Jay Moshlehi in the Dodgeball quarterfinals on Tuesday, May 3 during activities. (Previously posted on Spectrum as just a photo).

During the months of March, April and May, break was a chaotic time. With whistles blowing and colorful balls bouncing on the lower and upper courts, the dodgeball matches began at the start of break almost every day.

The dodgeball tournament, which had previously taken place every spring, took a short hiatus these past couple of years due to COVID. It is a Harvard-Westlake tradition that began around 10 years ago. 

This year, there were a total of 31 dodgeball teams participating. Since this was a ladder tournament, two teams would face each other and the winner would advance to play another winner. Referees including math teachers Dan Reeves ’94, Jane Zink and Jessie Shorr, middle school secretary Tim Smith and science teacher Geoff Robertson would stand courtside judging the plays. Spectators were required to watch outside the courts. 

The very first match was held at the end of February. After a two-year period without this tradition, the tournament was met with enthusiasm by the student body. Crowds of people congregated above the lower court to view the games during break. 

“It was entertaining. It brought all the grades together in a competitive way. I think there was a game where everyone thought the eighth-grade team wouldn’t win but there was this kid on the [eighth-grade] team who caught a ball from the ninth-graders and everyone was cheering for him,” Lydia Gugsa ’26 said. 

There could be a maximum of seven players on the dodgeball team which may have included up to one faculty or staff member. The players could be from any grade or gender. 

“We were on the upper courts and I was strategizing with my team AKA the ‘Oompa Loompas and Willy Winks’,” Colton Checchi ’26 said. “We had the most epic loss…but it was a lot of fun in the end.”

“It was really funny … We beat the ninth-graders when Tane [Rice ’26] dropped the ball and caught it again,” Emil Palmer ‘26 said.

Players and spectators also expressed their increased sense of community: 

“Usually you don’t see this many crowds of people … So, seeing everyone gathered to watch kind of showed the sense of community,” Gugsa said.

The winning team, “Library,” was a group of six ninth-graders led by Coach Freddy Arroyo. On the team was Chad Ward ’25, Elijah Williams ’25, Mateo Arroyo ’25, Max Warlick ’25, Nicholas Nakamura ’25 and Jaaziah McZeal ’25. 

“It felt really good [when we won] because these were a bunch of my friends and teammates,” Ward said. “I felt like we were going to win [from] Day One, but it [still] felt really good proving the doubters wrong … This was such a great thing to do with my best friends and it helped that we were already close.” 

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About the Contributors
Sofia Giovine
Sofia Giovine, Reporter
Sofia Giovine ’26 is a second year reporter for The Spectrum. She loves writing feature stories and enjoys interviewing others to gain perspective on current events. Sofia began writing at her previous school, writing a variety of feature articles. She plans to continue writing feature stories as well as news articles this year. Sofia wants to continue journalism at the upper school, hoping to join the Chronicle and chase her passion of writing further.
“I’ve always liked writing and reading ever since I was a little kid, and I always wanted to write for the school newspaper.”
Annabelle Cheung
Annabelle Cheung, Reporter
Annabelle Cheung ’26 is a second year Spectrum reporter. Cheung has been taking journalism classes since the second grade, and has always had an interest in journalism and reporting. After having a great first year in eighth grade, she wanted to come back for her freshman year before going on to the upper school. Her favorite section to write for is features, as it comes to her most naturally.
“I love interviewing people. It’s just something that I’ve always wanted to do. I love getting to know people and asking questions that wouldn’t otherwise come up in conversation.”
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