Joseph Ramos, Ryan Cole, and Ryan Van Kirk

As someone who everyone looks up to, senior sports editor Ryan Van Kirk is back on the court for his fourth quarter of high school. As the varsity basketball captain and the sports editor for The Sentry, Van Kirk lives and breathes sports.

“I’m a huge basketball guy. I am a point guard and I am 5’9, so the options are limited,” Van Kirk said.

However, Van Kirk also enjoys giving back to the community. He leads a club called Yorktown AFAC (Arlington Food Assistance Center).

“[The club] gives people volunteer opportunities, we hold food drives and we just try to raise awareness in general at Yorktown,” Van Kirk said.

But Van Kirk is not just focused on extracurriculars. A true scholar, Van Kirk’s best subject is math, but he is also interested in learning about history.

“There is just something about learning about the past. There are all these stupid, crazy stories that are unbelievable, but they are true,” Van Kirk said.

When he is not shooting hoops or tracking down an exclusive lead, Van Kirk enjoys spending some of his free time watching comedy television. When asked to choose to watch only one show for the rest of his life, he was torn between two.

“It’s between Its Always Sunny In Philadelphia, and The Office. Jim and Pam’s relationship is just so beautiful… but Always Sunny is so funny and there are so many hard, hard laughs that I gotta go with that,” Van Kirk said.

While on the topic of television, Van Kirk revealed that if he was making a movie about The Sentry, he would cast John Krasinski, the actor who plays Jim in The Office, as himself.

“I mean, you gotta give it to John Krasinski. Obviously he’s got a little height on me, but that’s who I would want because he’s the man,” Van Kirk said

Just like Jim, Van Kirk is just a regular person. He strives to do things well, but sometimes he makes mistakes. What really matters though, is his ability to laugh at himself and learn from those faults.

“I have called my teacher mom before, which is awful,” Van Kirk said.

He also described a time during his sophomore year when he was saying something in front of the newspaper class and then said the word decision with a lisp. The head editors still make fun of him for it.

“They are pretty ruthless,” Van Kirk said.

But now, as the sports editor here at The Sentry, Van Kirk has shown he will not quit in the face of adversity, much like the publication he most looks up to: The New York Times.

“They are really professional. You have to respect that kind of character, and the way they handle themselves, despite being attacked all the time,” Van Kirk said.

Van Kirk’s work ethic and attitude seem to resemble that of The New York Times. Despite his position on the team and within the newspaper, Van Kirk is a very humble and kind person. These attributes will hopefully help him to be a great role model and leader both on and off the court this year.

 

 

Junior Joseph Ramos is a reader of the Boston Globe, a fan of Chance the Rapper and a three year veteran of the varsity hockey team. Entering his second year on staff as a Sentry reporter, Ramos’s experience is invaluable.

Ramos is a big dog lover. He has a lab-pitbull mix named Gus at home. When asked which he liked more, cats or dogs, Ramos’s answer was profusive.  

“Dogs all the way. It’s about the companionship,” Ramos said.

An active member of the school community, Ramos is involved in several different extracurriculars.

“I have been on the Yorktown varsity hockey team for three years. Writing for The Sentry is also a big hobby of mine,” Ramos said.

When talking with him, it is clear to see that he is an outgoing and engaging person. However, he wishes he could be an even more convincing speaker.

“If I could be great at one thing, it would be the ability to convince people of anything. Being a good negotiator,” Ramos said.

As a lover of the beach and surfboarding, Ramos’s summer vacation location is his ideal trip.

“Every summer [I] drive up to Boston [where] my grandparents live. They have a house in a town north of Boston, Manchester. They live right by the beach and I’ve got a surfboard. Some of the boys will sometimes come up,” Ramos said.

Chance the Rapper is many people’s favorite artist and with Ramos it is no different. But when listening to music, he sometimes likes to switch it up.

“I love Chance the Rapper, but sometimes I’ll listen to throwbacks. “Angels” by Chance the Rapper is consistently one of my favorite songs, but it changes a lot. I like to keep it fresh,” Ramos said.

Ramos loves his music and is not afraid to share his opinion on his most and least favorite songs, albums, and artists.

“I was not a fan of Taylor Swift’s last album. But I’m still a big Tay Tay fan. Old Kanye is better than New Kanye. I don’t like rap beef. I do not want to see hate in the community, it’s all about the love,” Ramos said.

Ramos is all smiles, his energy is contagious and he is fun to be around. This is why Ramos does not watch movies that will make him cry.

“Deadpool 2 made me cry, there is one scene that really got to me. I avoid movies that will make me cry, I don’t want to get too much into my feels,” Ramos said.

As a reporter, Ramos looks up to a couple journalists that are at the top of their fields.

“Journalistically, I’m big fan of Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein. All the President’s Men is one of my favorite books. It is about the Watergate scandal,” Ramos said.

As a hockey player and reporter, Ramos has a couple quotes which really speak to him.

“There is a good hockey quote that says ‘nobody cares, work harder.’ I also like a quote by Trevor Noah, he says ‘We live in a world where nuance is in short supply.’ It ties into journalism because people are labeling things but they are not seeing the bigger picture,” Ramos said.

The Sentry is lucky to have Ramos on staff this year. His positive attitude and love for reading and journalism will be appreciated.

 

 

Ryan Cole is entering his first year on staff with The Yorktown Sentry; however, the piano-playing, Office-loving freshman is intent on taking his journalistic career beyond the scope of high school newspaper.

“I want to be a journalist when I grow up. I found that out when I realized I could not play a professional sport. Joining The Sentry is one of the steps in that process,” Cole said.

Cole, who cited legendary sportscaster Al Michaels as someone with whom he would want to switch lives with for a day, is also a huge sports fan. This is evident through his extensive wardrobe of D.C. sports apparel, which includes tee-shirts celebrating the recent championship won by the Washington Capitals. As a long-time fan of the Caps and D.C. sports as a whole, Cole was overjoyed with the recent victory. However, he fears that his actions leading up to the triumph have had unexpected consequences.

“I am a big D.C. sports fan and it has been a rough ride over the years. I am also a very emotional sports fan and I yell a lot at the television. One of my favorite lines that I used to say was ‘I just want one of my teams to win something’. Now that the Capitals have won, all of the other Washington teams seem to being doing poorly. I believe that I have cursed D.C. sports. I am not going to see another championship because of that line that I used to say,” Cole said.

Aside from his passion for sports, Cole enjoys playing the piano, which he has been doing for eight years. He also is a clear academic, selecting a book, a pencil and paper as items that he would bring with him on a stranded island. He also chose to bring his cell phone, but only for the purpose of having it in his pocket to give him a sense of assurance and connection to society.

While Cole has garnered expertise in the realm of music, he still hopes to broaden his skill set throughout high school. His present pursuit is to improve his culinary abilities.

“One of my personal goals is to learn how to cook. The last time I cooked something was in third grade cooking camp. That was a long time ago. I do enjoy warming up pizza though,” Cole said.

When asked to summarize himself in one word, Cole took some time to ponder just what that word should be. After spending a good thirty seconds haggling between possible adjectives, Cole quipped that “indecisive” could describe him well.

In choosing the role that would best fit him in a nomadic society, Cole further displayed himself as a self-honest person. Faced with either being a hunter or gatherer, Cole chose the latter, despite the masculine allure of the former.

“Part of me thinks that it would be much more cool to say hunter, but I do not think I              could kill something,” Cole said.

Despite his lack of aggression, Cole still has much potential to be an ambitious journalist. With his light-hearted and upbeat disposition, The Sentry is very fortunate to have Cole on staff at the beginnings of his budding journalistic career.