Destination: State

April 24, 2015 by ·  


artwork by Alex Villescas

Two of TJ’s freshmen will be competing at the Destination Imagination State competition.

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Rolling Into The Season

April 22, 2015 by ·  


Seniors Kelly Cordes and Quinn Roder prepare for an upcoming game. photo by Sasha Mesropov

New changes bring hope and energy to the girls’ soccer team.

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Coming Home

April 21, 2015 by ·  


Kenny Muniz brings strength and spirit to the Spartan teams. photo by Susie Sundeen

For senior Kenny Muniz, high school has been a wild ride.

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Kicking Her Dreams Into Full Gear

April 18, 2015 by ·  


Marinah signs her letter of intent to play at Trinidad, surrounded by her family and friends. photo by Jay Wilson

Senior Marinah McGinnis has received a full ride to play soccer at Trinidad State Junior College.

When Senior Marinah McGinnis began playing soccer at the age of 5, little did she know that her new hobby would pay for her college education. The entire McGinnis family shares a passion for sports. McGinnis and her older sister grew up playing soccer and basketball, but as they both grew older they knew soccer was the sport for them.

McGinnis knew that she had a love for soccer when she started playing on her first club team. “The first team I ever played on was the Montbello Pandas. My parents were the ones who started it up and coached it,” stated McGinnis. As McGinnis grew, her talent grew as well. She has played on a variety of different teams such as Storm, Wheat Ridge, and Rapids. “I have been playing with the Rapids since I was 12. I love everything about this club. This past year I have been playing with the U-18 Rapids Academy Team. This team is considered to be at the highest level in the club. Many scouts come to our tournaments and have talked to me as well as many of my teammates,” explained McGinnis.

The first year of high school soccer was very intimidating for McGinnis: “I was nervous for my first high school soccer season. I heard that high school is far more competitive than middle school soccer,” said McGinnis. At the end of tryouts McGinnis was hoping to have made the team. “I ended up making varsity and I was so excited. Making varsity as a freshman is a huge accomplishment for me,” explained McGinnis.

Throughout McGinnis’s four years, she played as right midfield as well as forward. “I really enjoy playing right mid because I have played it most of my life. It comes naturally to me and it’s a plus that I’m right-footed and that I like to whip it in,” stated McGinnis. Sara Andolsek, CCTM ProTech and former varsity soccer coach, thought very highly of McGinnis. “Marinah was best used as an outside midfielder mostly because of her speed but she also had a great cross in, whether on the ground or in the air. So you could definitely say she had a good foot on her,” recounted Andolsek.

McGinnis has always desired to play college soccer, so when she started receiving offers from a variety of schools, her excitement grew. “It was difficult for me to choose where I wanted to play because so many great schools were offering me scholarships. My older sister Braelah plays at Trinidad, so I already knew some facts about that school. When they offered me a full ride I knew it was a perfect fit not only because the soccer team is amazing but because I had family who went there,” explained McGinnis. Teacher and assistant varsity coach Jon Poole knows McGinnis has a great future ahead of her. “ I think Marinah will do very well in college, I think because of her focus and her coachability she’ll be successful. She does have areas to improve, as all players do, but because she is so willing to be coached, she will make those improvements. I hope she does very well.”

When McGinnis isn’t playing soccer, but she loves to help manage her dad’s basketball team. “My dad coaches the basketball team at Mrachek Middle School. I really enjoy helping him because this gives me a way to learn how to coach. I can take what I learned from my dad coaching his kids and help be a leader for the girls’ soccer team,” stated McGinnis. Heading into college, students must undergo the search of what they want to study. McGinnis is interested in Sports Event Management. Although Trinidad does not offer it, she hopes to pursue it after completing her two years at Trinidad.

McGinnis is excited to be playing at Trinidad State in the Fall of 2015 as a Trojan. She has left a huge impact on the girls’ soccer program at Thomas Jefferson and is fortunate to be moving onto a higher level to pursue her dreams.

TJ’s Night Out

April 16, 2015 by ·  


artwork by Sara Andolsek

A fun new tradition promises to bring back Spartan pride.

In the past year, TJ has made great strides to be recognized within the community and DPS. Attendance has gone up, test scores have improved, and TJ is trying to become one of the top DPS high schools. Even though the school has made improvements, school spirit and traditions have decreased.

Staff and parents have been working on establishing a greater sense of pride in brown and gold, and have been incorporating old tradition with new ones. Sara Andolsek, a TJ alumni and Pro Tech, along with gym teacher Brittany Penn and DECA sponsor and teacher Matthew Nicolo, have organized a free night for the students. Night Out will be held on Friday April 17th from 6:30 to 9:30.  For $10 students can put together a team to participate in a volleyball tournament. Portions of that money will go towards prizes for the participants. SVCIO, comprised of student DJ’s Travis Domagala and Weston Wilkins, will be performing for their fellow Spartans. Food and drinks have been donated by local businesses and TJ parents and staff and have volunteered to be servers for this event. Seniors will be recognized that night with their own VIP section and “best of ” awards.

To attend the event, students must bring their ticket and their school ID. The tickets can be picked up from Andolsek, Nicolo, Penn or Jennifer Sonheim. Tickets are free to anyone, but if students forget their ticket there will be a $3 charge at the door.  The event is exclusive to TJ students, and bouncers at the event will have a list of students who have picked up a ticket. The theme of the event is black, white, sparkle, and gold, so students should plan their attire accordingly.

Overall the Night Out is going to be a fun event that will hopefully bring some sparkle and spark pride in our school that will continue on for years to come.

The Aspen Challenge: Be a Voice

April 11, 2015 by ·  

The Be a Voice team after their presentation. Back row: Nick Davis, Dawite Abate, Nancy Enriquez, DPS Student Board of Education Anne Rowe, Henry Cooper, Matt Santambrogio; front row: Erin Thompson, Hannah Smith, Eric Perry, Obed Munoz, Langston Mayo, Principal Suzanne Morris-Sherer and DPS Superintendent Tom Boasberg. photo courtesy of Anne Rowe

TJ’s team of eight Leadership students competed in the Aspen Challenge Competition.

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Meet the Prince

April 10, 2015 by ·  


Kamara works hard to better himself as a wrestler. photo by Sasha Mesropov

Twelve years ago, Mouctar Kamara embarked on a journey that has changed his life for the better. 

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Unified for One, Unified for All

April 9, 2015 by ·  


Team members from left to right: Coach Pitrone, Jack Willson, Jonny Sundeen, Shi Vargas, Coach Enzminger, Dane Washington, Conner Sutton, Jazz Moore, Coach Novak (not pictured: David Johnson, Madisyn Higgins, Jaylin Johnson)

TJ’s Unified Basketball team headed back to the State championship on March 20th hoping to be victorious again.

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Showing Off Skills

April 7, 2015 by ·  


artwork courtesy of SkillsUSA

TJ students eagerly prepare for the upcoming SkillsUSA State Championships.

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TJ’s Black Box Brought to Life

April 7, 2015 by ·  


Palmieri poses with the new equipment. photo by Savannah Orth

TJ’s black box theatre received new equipment, creating a new experience for drama and stagecraft students.

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