Senior girls dominate the 2022 Klassy Kickoff

Gil Ladetzky

Following their victory, the senior girls hold up the “w.”

From elaborate stairwell decorations and spirit days to the Homecoming court activities and an energetic rally, the 2022 Homecoming week was one to remember. To cap off the celebrations, the annual Klassy Kickoff game between the junior and senior girls took place on Friday, Oct. 14. Following a loss in last year’s game, the class of 2023 came roaring back and beat the junior girls by a score of 12-0. Junior Wilson Schwartz, a member of the varsity football team, served as one of the coaches and was proud of his team, highlighting the work and dedication they put in. 

“[The] girls fought really hard. I thought we practiced hard and played hard. We had a couple key mistakes that led to the loss, including dropped balls and bad defense but overall we played pretty well,” Schwartz said. 

Junior Haley Ritchey took part in the game for the first time, enjoying the experience of playing and reflecting on the team’s preparation.

“Going into the game I felt really strong. We had good practices and we looked good. We had some awesome opportunities, but in the end it didn’t go how we wanted it to,” Ritchey said. 

The game is composed of 30 juniors and 30 seniors, with players being selected by a raffle, so not everyone who wants to play is given the opportunity. The preparation for the game required the girls to wake up to  practice before school, but even with the early mornings, Ritchey recognizes the team’s spirit and camaraderie.

“The practices were super fun even though we had to wake up early,” Ritchey said. “The excitement that came with it made up for it. It was a great experience overall and I hope I [am chosen to play again next year].” 

 The senior girls were in control from the first whistle. Stopping the juniors from scoring on their first attempt, the seniors came down the field and scored an easy touchdown pass to Kallen Wank to take a 6-0 lead. The juniors never brought momentum to their sideline and dropped passes leading to the 12-0 loss.

Paige Barta was a star for the seniors, forcing double teams, allowing her teammates to evade into open space. A long run halfway through the game set up a touchdown run by Maddie Buck to take a 12-0 lead. Barta expresses the enjoyment that came with the game and was happy with her team’s effort.

Despite the loss, the junior girls “say cheese” for the camera.

“I feel fantastic [and] I thought it was a great team effort. I’m super proud of everyone for putting in that extra work. Everyone played their hearts out for the full game [and] we were ready for it,” Barta said. 

Just as the juniors did, the senior girls woke up early to practice. Barta credits her coaches for the effort they put in to help the girls prepare.

“Anytime everyone could all make practice at the same time, we were on the field. Coaches were really dedicated too. I really have to give it to them. They knew what they were doing and they led us to victory,” Barta said.

The junior girls were unable to complete more than one pass and nothing worked in the running aspect of the game either. With short runs and dropped balls, it was hard for the juniors to move down the field and ultimately led to the loss. Despite the outcome, Schwartz mentions the dedication it took from the team to get ready for the game and appreciates the girls’ efforts.

“We were putting in the work every single morning this week and last. We even had a Sunday practice. We were trying to get everyone to love the game and it showed when they all had smiles on their faces,” Schwartz said. 

The lunchtime game attracted a lot of students, creating a positive atmosphere the entire time, which Barta credits as a reason for the seniors’ victory. 

“The crowd made all the difference. We love our fans, we appreciate all of the seniors out there cheering us on and they are really who we do this for. Both teams seemed excited whether the players were on the field or not,” Barta said.

The end of the Klassy Kickoff capped off a spectacular week filled with excitement and joy, paving the way for the Homecoming football game that took place on Oct. 15 where the Giants beat San Rafael 44-6.