Nonnewaug High School's Chief News Source

NHS Chief Advocate

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Nonnewaug High School's Chief News Source

NHS Chief Advocate

Nonnewaug High School's Chief News Source

NHS Chief Advocate

Nonnewaug High Schools senior circle in 2015 before renovations began and changed the look of the school.
Reminiscing on the Senior Circle
Jillian Brown '24, Reporter • December 4, 2023
Nonnewaug boys soccer starters stand in a huddle before their game. This 2023 team, although down 13 seniors from last season, proved to be more successful than people had thought possible.
Nonnewaug Boys Soccer Rallied for Surprisingly Successful Fall
Brian Mohl '24, Reporter • December 1, 2023
Connor Bedard donning the Chicago Blackhawks home jersey on the ice for the first time. The picture was taken the day before his first-ever home game Oct. 21 where the Blackhawks would lose to the Vegas Golden Nights by a score of 5-3. (Blackhawks/Instagram)
18-Year-Old Connor Bedard the NHL's New Golden Boy
Sean Classey '24, Reporter • December 1, 2023
The Woodbury FFA Holiday Plant sale includes a variety of holiday-themed items for sale, including yule logs, wreaths, poinsettias, and more.
Behind the Scenes of FFA Holiday Plant Sale Prep
Culinary instructor John Dominello, left, and culinary student Case Hackett help to deliver one of the 140 meals to community senior citizens Nov. 30.
Senior Citizen Meal Continues to Bring Campus and Communities Together
Brianna Johnson '25 and Grace Nelson '25December 1, 2023
Students in Culinary Arts enjoy tending to the indoor classroom vertical gardens. Opportunities like these can be extended to even more students should a potential eight-period day be introduced.
Electives Courses Weight Impact of Potential Schedule Change
Dayton Griffin '24, Reporter • December 1, 2023
NHS News: November 2023
NHS News: November 2023
NHS NewsDecember 1, 2023
As the talk of schedule change flows throughout the school, opinions vary. For some, the current schedule is time consuming as it is. Will 8 periods be too much for students to handle?
Could an Eight-Period Day Take the Role of Friend or Foe?
Lana Manganello '25, Reporter • December 1, 2023
The Nonnewaug girls basketball team poses after a win against Gilbert last season.
NHS Girls Basketball Sees Underclassmen as Assets
Arabella Rosa '25, Reporter • December 1, 2023
An image of the six nominees for “Game of the Year” at the 2023 Game Awards. Each year, six games are chosen for this nomination, with the first Game Awards premiering in 2013.
Celebrating an Industry: The 10th Annual Game Awards
Tyler Timko '24, Reporter • November 30, 2023

50 Years After Title IX, Women Still Breaking Ground in Sports

Trzaski’s basketball experience, recent volleyball milestones prove that women’s sports are thriving
Rebecca Trzaski, back right, and her daughter, Katelyn, third from left in the back, pose after a fall season basketball camp. It’s one of the many basketball activities that Trzaski has pulled together to offer more opportunities for young girls. (Courtesy of Rebecca Trzaski)

WOODBURY — All that 10-year-old Rebecca Trzaski wanted to do was play basketball. But there was one problem: Her elementary school in Waterbury didn’t have a girls basketball team.

So she decided to do something about it.

“I wrote a note to the boys basketball coach saying that I wanted to join and then ended it with, ‘P.S. I’m pretty good,’” said Trzaski, now a social studies teacher at Nonnewaug High School.

After Trzaski submitted her letter, she recalled that the coach “marched into the principal’s office” and gave him two choices to avoid violating Title IX: “You’re either going to offer a female basketball team, or I’m taking this girl on my [boys basketball] team.”

Soon enough, the school had its first girls basketball team, which Trzaski’s mom stepped up to coach because “they called my mother and said, ‘Your daughter is a rabble rouser, so you’re going to coach the team.’ My mother knew nothing about basketball.” Eventually, an entire fifth- and sixth-grade league followed as more girls wanted to play basketball.

Fast forward to this summer, when Trzaski saw how much things have changed since the letter she wrote.

“This summer was the 50th anniversary of Title IX, and on that night we had 60 girls out on the basketball court,” said Trzaski, who helps run a girls basketball league in Middlebury. “I said to [my daughter], ‘This is what it’s about, providing opportunities for the next generation that weren’t really there.’ My mother didn’t get to play basketball because there were no girls leagues. I was able to get a league because of my mother, and now my daughter has a very strong program.”

As women’s sports are becoming more popular by the day, Title IX is viewed as the backbone of that success.

Title IX is a 1972 law which states that “no person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”

I said to [my daughter], ‘This is what it’s about, providing opportunities for the next generation that weren’t really there.’ My mother didn’t get to play basketball because there were no girls leagues. I was able to get a league because of my mother, and now my daughter has a very strong program.

— Rebecca Trzaski

In the years since, women’s sports have skyrocketed in popularity, and many young girls have been playing sports since they could walk. 

“Soccer is my passion and I have devoted many years to my sport. I’ve been playing soccer since I was 6 years old,” said Katie Farrell, a junior soccer player at Nonnewaug. “If I didn’t have the opportunities I did as a kid, I wouldn’t be where I am today.”  

Nonnewaug continued a strong track record in most women’s fall sports this year. The volleyball team was one of those great teams, only losing to one opponent during the regular season.

A main goal for the volleyball team this fall was to try to get more people to attend games. That’s where Juliette Nichols came in. She started an Instagram account that became quite popular right off the bat. This later showed positive results as games were filled for almost every home game.

From left, Kaylee Jackson, Macey Chmiel, Bella Starr, Chloe Weaver, and Maggie Keane, celebrate Sept. 15 during Nonnewaug’s win against Wamogo. (Fred Raymond)

“I mainly started the Instagram account because we really didn’t have one last year, and as seniors, this was our last chance to have a student section, so I really just wanted to get the word out about our games,” Nichols said. “We’re a good team and we deserve a student section.”

As more fans came, senior Luke Cenatiempo noticed more energy in the gym.

“The games are very exciting,” Cenatiempo said. “I think more people should show up and support our volleyball women.” 

University of Nebraska volleyball players Lindsay Krause (22) and Andi Jackson go up for a block during the Cornhuskers’ 3-0 win over Omaha on Aug. 30. Nebraska set a world record for a women’s sporting event with an attendance of 92,003. (University of Nebraska Athletics)

While Nonnewaug experienced a larger volleyball crowd this year, the University of Nebraska’s volleyball team takes the cake. The Cornhuskers set a world record for single-game attendance at a women’s sports event when they drew 92,003 fans to Memorial Stadium.

Nebraska also holds the NCAA record for most consecutive volleyball games sold out with 313, as of Oct. 20.

“I wish more people had this energy and support for more women’s sports,” Nichols said. “Seeing how many people came to the [Nebraska volleyball] game is exciting.”

Even though women now have opportunities in all sports, professional women athletes are still paid unequally even though oftentimes they have more success than some men’s teams, such as the U.S. national soccer teams.

“Yes, there are still a lot of inequalities,” Trzaski said, “but when [former U.S. Women’s National Team soccer player] Megan Rapinoe stands up and says, ‘We don’t lose; we deserve to be paid better than the men’s soccer team,’ those are the fights that we’re going to continue to have until societal expectations change. … The more we get into the media … that’s phenomenal.”

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About the Contributor
Kaylee Jackson '24, Senior Editor
Kaylee Jackson is a senior at Nonnewaug and is in her second year of the Chief Advocate program, now as a senior editor. She has played on the volleyball team for all four years of her high school career, and she enjoys writing about sports and local events. When Kaylee graduates, she wants to go to dental school and become a hygienist.
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