Carrboro Students Raising Money For Dominican Republic

For the last two years, students at Carrboro High School have traveled to the Dominican Republic to paint murals.

This year, a pair of Dominican muralists came to Carrboro and returned the favor – and now, Carrboro students are readying for a public unveiling ceremony that will double as a fundraiser for Dominican communities that lack running water.

Carrboro senior Leah Simon and teacher John Hite spearheaded the project. Simon has traveled to the DR each of the last two summers with the organization Transcending Borders; she and Hite worked together with the Global Leadership Institute to bring the Dominican artists to Carrboro this year. They produced two murals – one representing “the now” and one representing “a hopeful future.”

Those artists hail from the La Cumbre region of the DR – a region where many families lack running water and have to travel significant distances to obtain water, either on foot or by mule, several times a day. Simon and Hite say the Carrboro High community is committed to raising funds to address that serious issue.

John Hite and Leah Simon.

John Hite and Leah Simon.

On Tuesday, May 26, Carrboro High will host a public unveiling ceremony from 6-8 pm for the school’s two new murals. Everyone is invited. There will also be food, music – and a silent auction to raise funds to help La Cumbre families get better access to water.

Hite and Simon say they’re hoping to raise a total of $15,000 for the cause; they’ve already raised about $10,000 through their various fundraising efforts.

John Hite and Leah Simon joined Aaron Keck on WCHL this week:

To learn more about the “Dominican Republic Water Project” and make a donation online, click here.

To learn more about Carrboro High’s fundraising efforts for La Cumbre, click here.

Carrboro HS Students Help Meals On Wheels

Carrboro High School students with moderate disabilities have been partnering with Meals on Wheels to help improve the quality of life for Chapel Hill residents.

Every month, the students head to Binkley Baptist Church and work with Meals on Wheels to bag up to 150 packages of food donated from PORCH; the food is then distributed to Orange County residents in need.

Carrboro High teacher Melissa Barry stopped by WCHL and spoke with Aaron Keck, along with six of the students: Zoe Kofodimos, Brittany Newby, Aaron Persons, Heather Porter, Lucia Maria Romano, and Max Van Name.


For more on how you can help Chapel Hill-Carrboro Meals on Wheels, visit

Carrboro High students visiting Meals on Wheels 2

The students (and Barry) speak with Aaron Keck on WCHL.

Carrboro HS Students “Become One” With Books

Last week was National Teen Read Week – and to mark the occasion, the Carrboro High School Library asked students to take their picture with a book cover, “becoming one with the image.”

They received 60 fantastic submissions. Here are just a few:

Carrboro Library book pics 2

Carrboro Library book pics 3

Carrboro Library book pics 4

Carrboro Library book pics 5

Carrboro Library book pics 6

You can see all the photos and vote for your favorites at

WCHL And Present The Chapelboro Cup

The Chapelboro Cup will be presented to the Chapelboro high school football team with the best overall record at the end of the regular season. Bitter rivalries have formed through the years between the teams of Orange and northern Chatham counties. Four of the six teams battle for a conference title each season now with Northwood and Cedar Ridge making the move to the 3A Big 8 conference.

Chapelboro Cup Standings

Orange made it deep in the 3A state title playoffs last season, but Chapel Hill may very well be the team to beat this season. And, you can’t count out Carrboro or East Chapel Hill to play spoiler in any matchup.


In the event of a tie, the following tiebreakers will determine a winner:

1. If two teams are tied, the winner of the head-to-head matchup will be awarded the Chapelboro Cup.
2. If more than two teams are tied, or the teams that are tied did not play each other, the best team’s record against other Chapelboro teams will determine the Chapelboro Cup Champion.

The Grid: Carrboro High Jaguars

We wrap up our weekly preseason high school football series with a trip up over to Carrboro High School. The Jaguars struggled to a 4-7 finish last season. But now, a new era begins for Jaguar football with Jason Tudryn’s departure for UNC and longtime defensive coordinator Melvin Griffin stepping in to take the reins.

***Listen to the story***

A year after a 15-1 season that ended with a state runner-up finish, the Jaguars failed to replicate any of that kind of championship magic in 2013.

Coach Griffin, who assumed the head coaching duties in June, will have his hands full getting the Jaguars back to the top of the 2A Mid-State conference this fall.

Coach Griffin had been working with the former Carrboro skipper Tudryn since 2007. But Coach Griffin says their connection goes back even further, to their days playing college football.

“It was great to work under Coach Tudryn. We realized through our conversations in the summer of ’07 that we played against each other while he was at UMass and I was at William & Mary in the Yankee conference. He gave me full control of the defense,” Coach Griffin says.

The coaching duo grew close on and off the field. Coach Griffin says his former boss helped him improve as a game planner.

“We worked together for the past seven years. Our families have grown close. Our kids have grown up together. I learned a lot from Coach Tudryn about studying films and practice plans,” Coach Griffin says.

Coach Griffin says offseason workouts have garnered impressive attendance. But he says the offensive and defensive line depth remains an issue heading into Friday night’s scrimmage just a week out from the regular season opener against Cedar Ridge.

“We had great attendance. Things are going smoothly. We’re trying to replace our entire defensive and offensive lines. That’s where we’ve been slow. But we’re getting ready for our scrimmage,” Coach Griffin says.

Former head coach Jason Tudryn with players (N&O)

Former head coach Jason Tudryn with players (N&O)

What is Coach Griffin specifically looking for in the final days of preparation? For starters, he says he’s most excited about the talent and skill returning at the perimeter positions.

“We’re looking for our perimeter skill guys to compete. We have a lot of talent coming back on the perimeter. They gained a lot of experience last year playing as freshmen and sophomores due to the injuries we had,” Coach Griffin says.

The quarterback position is up for grabs at Carrboro due to an injury incurred during basketball season that opened up a signal caller showdown between two unproven seniors.

In addition to identifying a starter there, Coach Griffin says he’s stressing the importance of their protection, and that must come from the offensive linemen.

“All in all, we know the young offensive line is going to make mistakes. What we’re really looking for is for the linemen to be aggressive and fire off the ball,” Coach Griffin says.

Coach Griffin’s Jaguars face a daunting early nonconference schedule that includes competitive 3A and 4A squads. But he says he relishes the challenge and thinks it will help his team for conference play down the line.

“It helps us out a lot. We’ll see multiple formations and different styles. Northwood has a lot of talent coming back. Chapel Hill is up-and-coming this year. We do have a challenging non-conference schedule that will help us prepare,” Coach Griffin says.

As far as what will constitute a successful year for Carrboro, Coach Griffin is keeping it short and simple.

“A successful year is a return trip to the playoffs. Once we get into the playoffs, we’ll let the chips fall where they may, but we’re really looking forward to a return trip to the playoffs,” Coach Griffin says.

CHCCS High Schools Graduation Preview

All three of Chapel Hill-Carrboro City’s high schools, East Chapel Hill High School, Chapel Hill High School, and Carrboro High School, will be graduating throughout the day on June 14th at the Dean Smith Center.

East Chapel Hill High’s ceremony begins at 9 a.m., Chapel Hill High’s ceremony begins at 1 p.m., and Carrboro High’s ceremony begins at 5 p.m.

East Chapel Hill will also be streaming their graduation event live on their website beginning at 8:30 a.m. until noon.

Carrboro student-athlete honored with scholarship

The Coy Maddry Memorial Scholarship Award has selected a Carrboro High School student-athlete as its 2014 recipient.

Katie Wilson, a two-time all-state girls’ field hockey athlete, was selected among a host of nominations from teachers and coaches.

The scholarship award is funded through Orange United Methodist Church and given to varsity student-athletes in Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools in memory of one of the church’s members, Avery “Coy” Maddry. Maddry graduated from Chapel Hill High School in 1990 and died the following year as a freshman at North Carolina State University.

Wilson played a total of three sports with the Jaguars, including two years of both swimming and lacrosse. She is attending Sewanee: The University of the South to continue her field hockey career.

“Katie has all the qualifications for the award,” said Rick Strunk, a member of Orange United Methodist. “She integrates all of the traits that we look for in a very positive way.”

In its 24 years of existence, the Coy Maddry Memorial Scholarship has provided almost $40,000 to students in pursuit of a continued education.

Wilson will receive a grant of $1,000 and be recognized during the church’s worship service on Sunday, June 1.

It’s ‘Jaguars Men’s Tennis Day’ in Carrboro

It’s officially Jaguars Men’s Tennis Day in the Town of Carrboro.

At the beginning of Tuesday night’s Board of Aldermen meeting, Carrboro Mayor Lydia Lavelle performed a duty that she called “a lot of fun,” and she’s already done it twice during the five months she’s held the office.

That is, she’s twice had the honor of writing a proclamation recognizing a local high school sports team for winning a state championship.

“Now therefore, be it resolved that I, Lydia Lavelle, Mayor of Carrboro, North Carolina, do hereby proclaim Wednesday, May 28th as Carrboro Jaguars Men’s Tennis Day; and urge all residents of the Town of Carrboro to take every opportunity to congratulate these players and their coaches for their remarkable achievement, this the 27th day of May, 2014.”

Lavelle said that one of the fun parts was doing the research on the State Champion Carrboro High School Jaguars Men’s Tennis Team – and two months ago, she did the same for the State 3A Champion Chapel Hill Lady Tigers basketball team.

Here’s how Jaguars Day came to be proclaimed in Carrboro today:

“On May 17, 2014, the Jaguars captured their first state tennis title; a resounding 5-0 victory over the Brevard Blue Devils, and won the North Carolina High School Athletic Association 2A State Dual Championship,” Lavelle said.

As Lavelle pointed out, the team had a two-year streak of runner-up finishes before finding that the third time is, indeed, the charm.

The mayor called all the players up front, one-by-one, to stand for a group photo.

While doing so, she singled out the accomplishments of Carrboro High junior Max Fritsch, who was selected as the State Championship’s Most Valuable Player, as well as Conference Player of the Year.

Fritsch is also the team’s most valuable player, as well as a state doubles champion, along with teammate Jacob Zinn.

The mayor also noted freshman Jason Wykoff, who received the State Championship Outstanding Sportsmanship Award, and is the team’s Freshman of the Year.

Jaguars Coach Jon Noyes was there with his team at Town Hall. He got up behind the podium to list the numerous honors that his team members racked up this year.

And then he said this:

“You guys did a fantastic job this year, and I’m really proud of you.”

So if you see a Jaguar from the Men’s Tennis team around Carrboro today, tell him you are, too.

UNC Snatches CHS Football Coach

UNC Football didn’t have to look far for a successful high school coach that will usher in the state’s top talent.

Carrboro High School head coach, Jason Tudryn resigned this week after accepting the position as UNC’s first Director of High School Relations.

“From being in a high school setting for the last, close to, 20 years and being in Florida, where it’s a highly-recruited state and having some high school players come out of Carrboro High School, I’ve gotten to experience it from the other side of the coin, if you will, and hoping to lend some of those experiences to my new position to be able to help us here at Carolina become even better,” Tudryn says.

Larry Fedora has stated since he took the head coaching position at Carolina in 2012 that his goal is to keep the most talented Carolinians in North Carolina.

“For Carolina and Coach Fedora to be able to create a position like this that helps us reach those people and helps them see us as people that would be willing to build their futures with is an exiting opportunity for me personally,” Tudryn says. “And, it’s very important for the state of North Carolina to make sure that all the talent in the state stays in-state.”

Carrboro High was founded in 2007, and Tudryn is the only person to hold the head coaching position. He built the program to state title contention by 2012 when the Jaguars lost their only game of the season to South Iredell in the 2012 2AA NCHSAA state title game.

“That was a chapter of my life that I’ll never forget,” Tudryn says. “I really anticipated being at Carrboro until I was old and grey. My dad was a high school coach for close to 40 years. I saw first hand the ability to experience all of the positive impacts he had on two communities, really.”

He says there was no way to turn down this opportunity, especially being so close to home.

“This is just an opportunity for me that wasn’t going to come by again, and it was an opportunity that I couldn’t pass up,” Tudryn says. “When I told the kids that I was leaving, I told them chapters close and end, and the story continues. They have a chance to continue on what we’ve built on. I think we turned our program into one of the most respectable programs in the state. The challenge for the older guys is to take the lessons that we’ve taught them over the years and to have them bear fruit, if you will, in prolonging the tradition of our young program.”

Jaguar A.D. April Ross made the announcement in an email Tuesday afternoon. She said “We wish Coach Tudryn much success in his new endeavors. He is a dedicated professional who has a tremendous work ethic and commitment to excellence. He will be truly missed by the Carrboro Community.”

In turn, Tudryn says he couldn’t have been happier working for anyone other than Ross.

“It’s an untold story, really, about how important administration is in the whole process in the success of each high school program or any sports program, really,” Tudryn says. “April Ross is the reason that that school’s so successful. They’ve won multiple Wells Fargo Cups. She is a friend, she’s a mentor, and I’ve been really thankful to have her come into our lives.”

Ross said Carrboro anticipates announcing Tudryn’s replacement in early June.

Tudryn started with Carolina on Monday.

Assistant Athletic Director for Communications at UNC, Kevin Best said in an email that Tudryn will be responsible for establishing and maintaining relationships with high school coaches as well as developing summer camps and clinics.

Coach Fedora is out of town and could not be reached for comment.

Student Teachers from Carrboro High Bring ‘Language for Youth’ to Culbreth Middle

A group of students at Carrboro High School have taken the initiative to teach foreign languages to students at Culbreth Middle School.

For about a year now, Carrboro High School senior Lee Mook and some other student volunteers have been teaching classes every Thursday at Culbreth Middle School.

The classes are held between the drowsy hours of 7:15 and 8:15 a.m. Carrboro High School Junior Maddie MacMillan is one of the volunteer teachers. She admits she’s not a “morning person,” but she’s happy to be there, regardless.

“It’s so much fun going to Culbreth every morning,” she says. “The amount of motivation that the Culbreth students have is outstanding. I’m blown away by every single day.”

MacMillan will be taking over the leadership of the Language for Youth program next year after Mook, its creator, graduates. And there’s talk of expanding it to other schools.

Mook says he got the idea for the program when he noticed the small number of students enrolled in Chinese-language classes at Carrboro High. That puzzled him.

“It started as just an idea I had to go to Culbreth Middle School and teach Chinese language,” he says. “From studying Chinese for a couple of years, I’d seen that it was a very, very important thing in the world, and that it would continue to be important.”

Mook credits Culbreth Middle School Principal Beverly Rudolph for being so receptive to his idea.

“Middle schoolers don’t have the opportunity to take Chinese classes,” he says, “and so the first time they’re getting the chance to do it is in high school.”

What started as one Chinese-language class has snowballed into around 50 students learning Spanish French, Chinese, Japanese and German from teachers that are just a couple of years older than themselves.

Academically & Intellectually Gifted Specialist Helen Motta of Culbreth Middle School has also been instrumental in the program’s success. For one thing, she helped out with advertising the program to potential students and teachers.

After that, she says, the program sells itself:

“Once they started coming, they keep coming, because the classes are fun, and they learn a lot.”