Tag Archives: sports

Mack lures transfer students — with sports and community

Breannie Robinson Aronisha Smith, 16 College Ready

by Anastasia Walton

Most transfer to McClymonds for sports, but others yearn for community, after feeling lost in the shuffle of students on bigger campuses like O’High, Tech or Skyline.

Some even come from afar: Vallejo, Manteca, or even San Francisco.

Jenero Rodriguez, sophomore, wakes up at 7:30  am,  gathers his backpack and books and heads for the door.  If he catches the 8:10 am bus from North Oakland he might make it on time for Spanish class.

Rodriguez is starting a new school year at a new campus with new faces, 33 of them (out of 265 students). After wearing a Bulldogs uniform for one year, he proudly dons a Warriors orange and black jersey.

According to the Oakland Unified School District’s student assignment office; there were twelve 9th graders, eleven 10th graders, three 11th graders, and seven 12th graders who transferred to Mack this current school year.

Like Rodriguez, Louis White, junior, 16, switched from Tech to McClymonds and to Mack’s Silver Bowl winning football team.

“The teachers at Mack really care.  They take the time to help you and make sure you get the material, unlike the teachers at my school [Tech],” stated White.

Who are these new faces you might ask? Well it was a question I was asking myself as well. I wanted to know whether the transition was easy and how they adjusted. The main difference, students said, was the encouragement from staff to prepare for college.

Jermaine McCann, an 11th grader said “The staff really pushes you and talks about college, where at my other school, they barely even brought up college.”  “Mack is  one big family,” he added.

Students who leave McClymonds are usually looking for more AP classes and more extracurricular activities, says Rolanda McGhee, Care Manager.

Fitting in at McClymonds may be easier than integrating elsewhere. Principal Kevin Taylor  said, “Students at Mack are very friendly and open so it isn’t hard for new students to settle in. As for the staff, I don’t really think they mind helping to teach a new mind.”

Warrior Gets A Facelift

photo by Sana Saeed

by Sana Saeed

Have you seen the really big tall warrior mural in the McClymonds gym?

The artistic facelift of the gym began when art teacher Rosemary Marr sauntered into the gym in September and commented  that it looked “oh so plain.” The school’s top ranked basketball team deserved a better looking gym, she said.

Soon it turned into an assignment for the advanced art class and ten students were assigned  jobs.

Mayasa Bennett and Brandie Hamilton grabbed black sharpies and started tracing a warrior that Marr  projected on the wall. Danny Sola and Marr traced the triangular Indian tribal designs over the bleachers.

The following days, Sana Saeed, Mayasa Bennett, and Toyia Banks grabbed paint brushes and black paint and started painting the traced warrior mural. Marr and the rest of the students finished tracing the other designs.

Marr created a transparency for the word “WARRIORS” in very bold letters. When Marr projected it, she, Mayasa, and Jaylen Kimmel, took black sharpies and traced over it.  As they completed the letters, they grabbed black paint and started painting. Marr purchased $75 in supplies, which included painters’ tape, paint brushes, and of course paint. Her goal was to finish the entire gym by the end of January.

As the work progressed, Marr wanted to paint “MACK HOUSE” in thin black letters with a dream catcher inside of the “O” of HOUSE. And this would go on the opposite side of the gym.

The class also plans to decorate the top of the bleachers with the tribal designs.

To show much appreciation, the basketball team gave Marr a big Thank You card for all her hard work.

One of the students who helped paint the gym, Danny Sola, 17 and a senior, said that her role in painting the gym was to help trace the Indian tribal designs and paint them. She said that she liked what it has become and its progress.

Selena Williams, 17 and a junior, who did not work on the project said, ” It’s cool and it gives the gym a new look.”

Why Oakland Shouldn’t Impose A Youth Curfew



by Romanalyn Inocencio

It’s late at night.  I’m stumbling to the bus stop after an exhausting basketball practice with my fellow Lady Warriors.  My feet ache, arms pulsate, and hunger sets in, making my guts screech.  I need to eat.  If I catch the bus on time, I might make it to Taco Bell before it closes. But will I be able to make it back home?

The public relations stunt supported by Mayor Jean Quan and Police Chief Howard Jordan would make THAT impossible.  And that’s why the youth curfew introduced last year (but not yet approved) would be a bad idea.

I don’t think the police will punish teenagers who live in the Oakland hills–I don’t even think they will stop them. They will only stop teens in areas like West, East, and even North Oakland.  Due to the stereotype of being black or brown–any color actually–and being after hours, that person is automatically viewed as a criminal.  But not the puny, sheltered white kid from the hills coming home from playing the violin with the Oakland Youth Orchestra.  He’s safe from being searched or stopped.

What if I, a varsity basketball player with a 3.5GPA,  ready to graduate,  have a late game and I need to walk home? Is the police going to arrest me for coming from a game? They might, when they see me walking down the street with a bag strapped across my shoulders and baggy shorts.

If the purpose of this curfew is to reduce crime rates among youth, then adults should be targeted as well.  Adults are the master minds in all these situations when they supply teenagers with weapons and often with dope.

We don’t have enough police to patrol teenagers in case of a curfew and who will keep the center (where they are held) open all night?  I don’t think Oakland has enough money for that, and if we do, then it should be used for something that won’t criminalize innocent teens who make their way home after hours.

The curfew will corral teens and cage them inside their homes.  Besides it’s not like criminals would follow the law and stay indoors after hours and become respectable citizens.  They will  just become more sneaky and move their business indoors.

I think police should focus on making sure that teens are not skipping class during the day and making sure they are where they need to be. Day time is not much different from the night.  Fights, shootings, and murders (many of the 100-plus in Oakland) occur during daylight. Let’s focus on keeping our schools safe, first.

Triple Crown for McClymonds: best in Oakland in football, basketball and track

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Kevin Vaughn – junior (center)

Dajaun Ford – junior (left)

Kelton Reynolds- (freshmen) right

Bomani – freshmen (right) p/3

by Sharday Hardy

The McClymonds track  and field boys’ team — competing in its first year — came in first in the Oakland Athletic League.

Outstanding performances included relay race and distance running.


Ouch!! Mack takes a loss


with stats from MaxPreps

by Eric Gant

The bus ride back from Sacramento must have been  brutal.  Half the team didn’t show up for school the next day.

The McClymonds Warriors played with passion and determination, but lost to the No. 2-seeded Sheldon Huskies 59-55 in the Northern California Division 1 semifinal in Sacramento on Tuesday night.

“A very tough loss,” said Dalvin Guy, junior.

About 50 students traveled to Sacramento by bus to cheer the team. They were joined by alumni, parents and other Mack students, decked in orange and black.

Sheldon took an early lead, but by halftime, the Warriors had tied the game 25-25.

“The most exciting moment was when we were tied,” said Angelique Villasana. “It was uphill but then downhill from there.”

Sheldon once again took the lead 51-36 in the fourth quarter, as McClymonds attempted three-pointers and narrowed the lead to 51-46 with 1:49 to go.

“Our missed free throws lost us the game,” said Mack coach Brandon Brooks.

Lawrence Otis led McClymonds with 14 points and Dulani Robinson had 13.

Alum Day at Mack: Bill Russell Views His Portrait


Photo and text by Pendarvis Harshaw:

Pen: Does it look like you?

Mr. Bill Russell: I wish I looked that good!

32 Minutes of Chaos

copyright photo of sophomore guard Gabby Gaines (out for several games now) by  Eric Taylor 1st String Magazine

stats provided by Max Preps

by Eric Gant and Stephen Vance

It’s the shortest in height, but also the scrappiest team in the OAL (Oakland Athletic League).

“Lady Warriors’ basketball is 32 minutes of chaos,” says head coach Dennis Flannery.

Despite its current slide, the McClymonds girls’ varsity basketball team “has a bunch of confidence,” says Flannery, a veteran coach with 26 years of experience who suffered a heart attack four weeks ago, but is back. “Our young players just need to step up.”

Its tallest player is only 5-foot-11, with 6-foot-plus players from rival teams towering over her. The other players are even shorter, much shorter.

Off to a promising pre-season start, the Lady Warriors (14-4) hit a snag, losing its two last games to #1 Skyline and Castlemont.  The team’s slide in standing to 4th place in the OAL is due mainly to the loss of two key players, sophomore guard Gabby Gaines (who hasn’t played since Jan. 6 and averaged 17.3 points a game)  and injured senior Therica McCord, as well as the absence of  Flannery at five key games. He was cleared to coach a few weeks ago.

In the first 14 games, Mack averaged 60.3 points a game. In the last four games, it averaged 39.5 points a game.

“It’s a challenge,” adds Flannery. “This team (if everyone is healthy and plays) could go deep into the playoffs.”  This team surpasses last year’s team in speed and shooting ability, he says.

The Lady Warriors  made sectional playoffs for four years in a row –quite a feat given McClymonds’ size of under 250 students. In the last two years, the team’s GPA was 3,1 of which Flannery is most proud.

The players don’t consider themselves Warriors or Lady Warriors, says Flannery. In fact, they end the game, shouting, “We’re family.”

“Coaching at Mack is like I had died and gone to heaven,” Flannery told macksmack in an interview in early December.  Just stay healthy, coach.