Music, Hilarity, Canned Meat Coming to HHS Stage

By Norah Kelley, ’24

Staff Writer

The HHS Drama Department is excited to announce that this year’s main stage musical will be Spamalot, The Musical! Spamalot is a comedic show based on the 1975 movie Monty Python and The Holy Grail, which was adapted for Broadway in 2005. This show twists the legend of Camelot and King Arthur’s journey to find the Holy Grail, a mythical cup said to grant eternal life. Arthur looks for knights who can join him on his quest, and along the way, finds groups of hysterical characters. HHS drama and music teachers – Mr. Fahey, Mr. Wade, and Mr. Harden – are looking for talented vocalists, actors, dancers, and crew members to help make this show a success! 

“We chose to do Spamalot this year for a few different reasons,” Mr. Fahey said. “Spamalot has a decent size cast with flexible casting opportunities, great opportunities for technical elements, and many hilarious characters which the audience may, or may not be, familiar with. We love Monty Python and we’re very excited to bring this wacky, fun show to life this year! “

Auditions for Spamalot, The Musical will be held November 16 from 3:30-6 pm in the HHS auditorium. Callbacks will be November 17, 3:30-6 pm. Rehearsals will be Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 6-8 pm and will increase as the performance date nears. Mr. Fahey expects the show will be staged in February.

For any questions or for more information, please reach out to Mr. Faherty, Mr. Wade, or Mr. Harden.

Spirit Week Unites Classes in Fun Events, Friendly Competition

By Callia Gilligan and Caris Mann, ’22

Staff Writers

The 2021 Spirit Week has come and gone with great success! Thanks to the hard work of the Student Council, students were able to enjoy a great series of events Oct. 18-22, leading up to the traditional Friday night Homecoming football game!

Spirit Week started off strong with America Monday. Freshmen to seniors could be found decked out in their red, white and blue. It was a great indicator of the participation that would come throughout the week! 

This year’s Tuesday theme was Hawaiian Day, and students certainly did not disappoint! Despite the cold weather, it was a tropical climate inside the school with Hawaiin shirts and leis. 

On Wednesday, HHS took a trip out west with our Western Wednesday! Hanover saw many cowboy hats, boots, lassos and sheriffs arrive, transforming students into cowboys! A new theme for this year, Western Wednesday had some of the highest numbers of participants for the week. 

Stay gold HHS! Thursday’s theme was Outsiders’ Day where students could dress up as either a Greaser or a Soc from S.E. Hinton’s The Outsiders. Everywhere you looked, students were dressed in leather and jean jackets, bandanas, and even some letterman jackets for Soc representation. This was another new theme that the Student Council tried out this year with the belief that it connected everybody since it was required reading for all students at Hanover Middle School.

Blue, black, white, and yellow were the only colors seen in school on Friday for the traditional Class Color Day. After a vote taken among teachers, the senior class was awarded the prize for most school spirit and best class representation.

Continuing with Homecoming Week tradition, HHS had its annual pod decorating contest on Friday. Each class decorated a hallway of the school in the theme selected by their class representatives. The freshmen went with a baseball theme as “Fenway Freshmen.” decorating with bases, baseballs and their very own Green Monster! The sophomore class delighted as “Spaced-Out Sophomores” with astronauts and aliens covering the hallway. They even added the special touch of writing the names of the members of the Class of 2024 on golden stars. The juniors took us to the tropics with their Jungle Juniors theme. Monkeys and parrots could be found hanging from the ceiling with an abundance of green leaves covering the hallway. Finally the senior class stayed in true October fashion and decorated the senior pod as “Spooky Seniors.” The hallway was filled with Halloween decorations and was reminiscent of a haunted house. While all classes certainly did a great job, the Seniors ultimately took the win for this year’s pod decoration contest. 

The Spirit Week Pep Rally, cancelled in 2020 because of COVID, made its triumphant return on Friday. This year, the rally was held outside on the turf as opposed to being in the gym. It was a fun alternative and a lot of students were fans of the change. Before the rally, the senior class gathered in the courtyard and listened to Taylor Swift’s Lovestory before running onto the turf. After the senior class made its debut, the Student Council E-board announced that the seniors had swept the Pod Decorating Contest and Most School Spirit prizes, as well as the award for the loudest cheer during the rally. Then the games began with the rock-paper-scissors hula hoop game where the underclassmen beat the upperclassmen. Next up was a new game, Dizzy Bat Penalty Kicks, where students had to spin around ten times in a circle and try to kick a soccer ball into a net guarded by varsity soccer goalies Mia Pongratz and Garrett Arnold. It was hilarious to watch when people would either fall or miss the goal entirely. The next game was dodgeball with the senior and sophomore classes vs the junior and freshmen classes. The seniors and sophomores took home the win. The final game was students vs teachers tug of war with the students ultimately winning in the end. The pep rally was a lot of fun this year with new games and excited participants.

The excitement of Spirit Week carried over into Friday’s Homecoming game against Pembroke. Band, cheerleading and football seniors were recognized for their sustained dedication over the last four years. Students continued to show their school spirit and came to the game dressed in all white. At halftime, seniors Danielle Tilden and Nick Plahn were crowned Homecoming King and Queen. The football team beat Pembroke 42 to 15 and the team celebrated with the singing of “Hey Baby.” It was an excellent game and a great end to Homecoming Week!

It had been over a year since HHS saw a Spirit Week and a Pep Rally. Overall, the week was a success with lots of participation to celebrate school spirit. Until next year!

Photos from Homecoming game and dance by Mr. Ryerson

Fall Sports Update: Tourney Underway!

Special Thanks to Mr. Hutchinson, HHS Athletics Director

The MIAA fall tournaments are underway for our Hanover Hawks.  On Wednesday the volleyball team defeated Saint Paul Diocesan in convincing fashion, 3-0.  Then yesterday, the field hockey team defeated Nipmuc 1-0 by scoring late in the fourth quarter and blocking multiple shots on goal in the final minutes.

Tonight , football will host the Minnechaug Falcons at 7:00 PM.  Admission to the game is $10 for adults and $5 for students and senior citizens.  Digital tickets are required and can be purchased at gofan.co.  

On Saturday there is a soccer double-header at the Harry Gerrish Memorial Field.  At 4:00 PM, the girls host Archbishop Williams.  Then at 6:30 PM, the boys host Stoneham.  Admission to each event is $5 for adults and $3 for senior citizens.   Admission is FREE for students thanks to a sponsorship by the Don Bunker Insurance Agency of Hanover.  Student tickets are still required for statistical purposes and can be obtained at the same site, gofan.co, as all other digital tickets.

The football and soccer games will be live-streamed by Hanover Community Television (HCTV).  To watch the games, visit HCTV’s Educational Channel.  

The MIAA website is a great resource for tournament brackets, seedings, pairings, and upcoming games.  For your reference, the sports accessible on the MIAA site in which Hanover is competing are each in division 3, unless otherwise noted in this communication. 

A few currently scheduled away tournament events are below.

Volleyball: Friday, 11/5, 4:00 PM at Cardinal Spellman – MIAA Division 3 Statewide Tournament

Cross Country: Saturday, 11/13, 11:30 AM at Gardner Golf Course – MIAA Division 2 Tournament

Competitive Cheer: Sunday, 11/14, TBA at Marshfield High School – MSAA South Sectional Tournament

Staff Join Unified Sports Team for First Game of Year

By Norah Kelley, ’24

Staff Writer

After a year and a half without games due to the pandemic, the HHS Unified Sports Team resumed play on October 21. In the fall, the team plays soccer, and for this first match, school staff was invited to take part. Teachers and students played hard and showed great teamwork and sportsmanship. Family and friends came to support the Unified Team and watch the game. Even some dogs came to watch! 

“I am so proud of the Unified Soccer team. They played with so much heart and our faculty players did a fantastic job!” said Mrs. Gately, HHS Spanish teacher and the program coordinator. “It was a great day for everyone.”  Mrs. Gately thanked Ms. Nixon, Mr. Decie, Ms. Doyle, Mrs. McHugh, Mrs. Bostwick, and Mrs. Cotter “for playing with so much gusto!”

Students are eager for another game soon, hopefully against another Unified Sports Team. Other local districts including Abington and Marshfield have Unified Teams as well, and HHS has played against them in the past. For now, practice continues every week. Later in the year, the team will switch to volleyball or basketball in the winter and kickball in the spring. 

Unified Sports is part of a national program that is a branch of the Special Olympics. Its goal is to bring together athletes with and without intellectual disabilities to compete on the same team. I look forward to our Unified Sports practices every week. The team is so supportive, and everyone loves to be there. If you are interested in joining, please reach out to Mrs. Gately or me for more information! 

Football Plans to Keep Excitement Going Long into Tournament

By Ben Freedman, ’25

Staff Writer

As the students and staff know, the Hanover High school’s varsity football team got off to an excellent start. This is not only due to Hanover’s extremely talented roster, but also the significant coaching staff, and the ecstatic fanbase that attends the games. With a 5-2 record after a Homecoming win over Pembroke Oct. 22, the team is ranked 6th out of 31 teams in Division 3. This sets up exciting possibilities for the upcoming tournament, and the varsity players are planning to go all the way.

“If we are healthy, we have a team that can win the state championship,” said Dylan Rice, #3, a senior wide receiver.

David Quinlan, #2, a junior wide receiver and defensive end, agreed. “I do really think we have a shot to take it,” he said. “Everyone keeps saying ‘oh next year,’ but I truly think we can go back to back (and win this year and next year). If we have everyone healthy and at the top of our game, we really have a shot.”

Michael Landolfi, #1, a junior and the team’s quarterback, said the secret to their success this season after a disappointing Fall 2 last year, is commitment. “I think we have a lot of kids back from last year and we are very locked in,” he said.

The Hawks are captained by Rice, Quinlan, Landolfi, senior Thao Lanagan and junior Joe Curran. The team’s performance has been stunning, with the squad racking up more than 30 points in six of its seven games. For Nick Freel, #10, a junior linebacker and running back who has scored a good share of those points, the Sept. 10 game against Whitman-Hanson showed the team its potential. Hanover won 33-20.

“There was a lot of skepticism going into the season, but that game helped us realize just how good we can be,” Freel said.

Hanover fans have been psyched for the return of a normal football season. 

“I love going to the football games and it feels good after a year of not having games,” said Nieve Rowlette, a senior.

Anna Bucchianeri, a senior who sings in the chorus at the games, agreed. “I think it’s a very good social event for everyone, especially after COVID 19.”

Kaya Bianculli, a junior, said attending the games gives you a chance to see people you don’t always see in school. “The environment is really fun and energetic,” she said.

Senior Jack Johnston agreed. “They’re fun and electric!” He hopes to be there when the team comes up against Plymouth South again. Hanover’s’ 42-35 loss against them Oct. 1 was a nailbiter that the Hawks would love to avenge.

For players on the freshman and JV squads, attending the games is a preview of what’s ahead for them.

“It’s a super fun experience to go to the games, and you get to see what it’s like to watch a varsity football game,” said Noah DeMeule, a member of the freshman squad.

Michael Bean, a sophomore nose guard/defensive tackle on JV, added “Personally I feel like it’s nice to be there to support the team and the players.”

Whatever happens this year, the team and fans are confident exciting football is here to stay in Hanover.

“Next year the team is going to be even better since most of our team is juniors,” said Rice. “They will have another shot of making a deep run into the tournament and winning a state championship.”

Those long-term plans for success are echoed by junior Sam Healy, #77, a left guard/defensive tackle. “The hope is to win the following games, and then to win the championship the next two seasons,” he said. “Coach Landolfi always talks about playing like a championship team and to not let one bad play turn into another.”

Featured pictures are from the Hawks’ 47-13 win over Dighton Rehoboth on Sept. 24. For more, click on the link:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/RTt879bKBjHKLRSo6

Fall Sports Update: Teams Preparing for Post-Season

Special Thanks to Mr. Hutchison, HHS Athletics Director

Excitement for our Hanover Hawks is growing as teams prepare for the postseason.  This year marks the first MIAA Statewide Tournament, different from past years when the tournament began within regional sections.  Along with this new format is a new seeding system based on power rankings and anticipation is growing.

Current MIAA Power Rankings (for applicable fall sports)

Boys Soccer (4-9-2): Currently ranked 16th out of 62 teams in Division 3.

Field Hockey (5-6-1): Currently ranked 18th out of 54 teams in Division 3.

Football (4-2): Currently ranked 6th out of 31 teams in Division 3.

Girls Soccer (12-3): Currently ranked 4th out of 66 teams in Division 3.

Volleyball (4-13): Currently ranked 28th out of 57 teams in Division 3.

The regular season for the majority of fall sports ends next weekend.  There are a few opportunities to come to HHS to support your Hawks as they finish the regular season.  For links to schedules for each team, visit the MIAA Schedules tab on the Hanover Athletics website.

Cheer, Cross Country, Golf

There are three other fall programs that power rankings do not apply; competition cheer, cross country, and golf.  The competition cheer team will compete Oct. 23 at their first competition of the season, the Duxbury Invitational.  The squad is scheduled to perform at 11:25 AM and spectators are permitted.  Best of luck to the competition cheer team at the Duxbury Invitational.

The cross country teams have completed the regular season and are in preparation for the Patriot League Championship, hosted at the Marshfield Fair Grounds on Oct. 30.  Afterward, the teams will participate in one last invitational before competing in the MIAA Cross Country tournament on Nov. 13 at Stanley Park in Westfield.

The golf season is complete and the program celebrated its successes at a team gathering Oct. 21.  Congratulations to the coaching staff and student-athletes on a successful season.  A special congratulations to the following Patriot League Award recipients: Scholar-Athlete Liam Monahan, Sportsmanship recipient Charlie Cataldo, and All-Stars Charlie Cataldo and Chris Doherty.

Some Pictures and Media Coverage

Girls Cross Country

Boys Cross Country

Volleyball

Football

Field Hockey

Girls Soccer

Boys Soccer

As Windows and Mirrors, Books Can Build Empathy, Acceptance

By Mrs. McHugh

HHS Librarian/Advisor of The Hawk

When you go to the library or a local bookstore, can you find books where you see a reflection of yourself? Are there books that feature characters who look and sound like you, who live where you do, whose experiences are similar to what you’ve gone through?

These books are often called “mirrors,” important to help people feel valued, understood and represented in their communities. Every library strives to include “mirrors” for diverse populations – based not just on race and ethnicity but also religion, sexual identity, learning differences, disabilities, economic factors, health issues and more. For people outside of these populations, these “mirrors” become “windows,” allowing a look into someone else’s world. While mirrors validate ourselves, windows help us build empathy and tolerance for others.

The HHS Library has a display of “window and mirror” books for Inclusive Schools Week, and has focused on adding more diverse perspectives in recent years to reflect national conversations about race, equal rights and tolerance. The publishing industry, though, still has a long way to go before it truly represents the makeup of our country. According to the Cooperative Children’s Book Center, which tracks new books each year, half of all children’s books published still feature white characters. In 2018, animals, trucks and other inanimate objects were featured more often than four other ethnicities combined. Those figures focus on race, but experts say the issues are the same with books about LGBTQ and other perspectives. As depicted in the infographic, this results in large mirrors for some populations and a sliver of representation for others.

Organizations like We Need Diverse Books are working to change the publishing industry, as are young influencers using social media such as BookTok to post reviews. You can help by stepping out of your comfort zone and trying new genres or topics, and then spreading the word about books you like. Stop by the library and check out the latest display, or explore some of the resources for diverse books in this article. When we find “mirrors” in books, we feel more connected and understood. With more “windows” into others’ lives, we can become more compassionate and accepting. And as Inclusive Schools Week reminds us, we are stronger when we celebrate our differences and come together as a community.


Get in the Spirit for Homecoming!

By Ben Freedman, ’25

Staff Writer

Hello Hanover High School students! This is Ben Freedman from The Hawk to inform you on everything you need to know about this year’s Homecoming.

Spirit Week will be held at HHS Oct. 18-Oct. 22, capped off by the Homecoming football game on Friday night and the Dance on Saturday. The Student Council and Senior Class officers have organized a week of fun with the following theme days:

  • Monday: America Monday
  • Tuesday: Hawaiian Day
  • Wednesday: Western Wednesday
  • Thursday: Outsiders Day:
    • Dress as a Greaser or a Soc from S.E. Hinton’s The Outsiders
  • Friday: Class Color Day:
    • Freshmen – yellow
    • Sophomores – white
    • Juniors – black
    • Seniors – blue

During 7th period Friday afternoon, students will gather on the football field for our first pep rally since COVID. Students from different classes will compete in games during the pep rally for fun and bragging rights. That night, the Hawks will take on rival Pembroke for what’s sure to be an exciting football game. Kickoff is 7 pm, and during half time, the Homecoming Court will be crowned. It will also be Senior Night for football, cheer and band. Make sure to be there!

The Dance will be held from 6-9 pm in the HHS cafeteria and courtyard. Tickets are $40 and will be on sale Monday, Oct. 18; they will not be sold at the door. Dinner will be in the cafeteria and dancing will be outside.

Now I’m sure that the number one thing students and parents are thinking about is whether we will have to wear masks. Yes, masks will be required for every HHS student attending the dance. Most students probably feel irritated by the mask mandate, but if everyone does a good job during the dance, it will help ensure we are able to have other events for students this year.

I wanted to go over a couple of points that students and parents are probably wondering about. The first is food. The food served at the Homecoming dance is still being decided, but it is usually a buffet where students can grab what they want when they want it and sit in the cafeteria to eat. Second is dates. You’re not allowed to bring people from other towns or schools, so most students go with a group of friends. Third is the dress code. Students should wear business casual clothing, which means gentlemen should wear slacks or khakis with a dress shirt or a blouse, and for ladies, the ideal attire would be a dress or skirt.

The Student Council and Senior Class officers have been planning Homecoming festivities since the summer and encourage students to take part. You only have so many opportunities in high school to meet people and get involved. As a freshman myself, something I like to keep in mind is to get involved because I only have four years of high school, and if I miss out on opportunities I know I cannot get them back. The same goes for any other student at HHS. 

Featured Picture: Homecoming Court 2019

Mr. Mattos Brings Focus on ‘Connected Student’ to Hawk Nation

By Callia Gilligan, ’22

Staff Writer

You’ve seen him in the hallways and you’ve heard him on the morning announcements talking about “Mission Monday.” From the first email he sent this summer, everyone has been dying to know more about our new principal Mr. Mattos and his plans for Hanover High School. 

Matthew Mattos joins us from Taunton High School, where he served as principal for 16 years. He is enthusiastic about being a part of the HHS community, which he affectionately calls Hawk Nation. 

Born on Westover Air Force Base in Chicopee, where his father was stationed, Mr. Mattos graduated from UMass Amherst and earned his master’s degree from Providence College and took Ph.D. classes from Lesley University. He initially majored in journalism, but switched to social studies when he decided he wanted to become a teacher. He was inspired by working with teenage campers during his summers of high school and college. The camp experience was full of energy and engagement, which he tried to carry into his career as an educator. “When I became a teacher, I tried to incorporate a lot of those lively, enthusiastic and energetic lessons,” he said.

While Mr. Mattos eventually became a principal so he could have a greater impact on the student population, it’s evident that this energy and enthusiasm were not left behind in his classroom. He’s committed to making the school environment a positive one and is excited to contribute to a better education for each student. “I like knowing that when people get out of their cars or off the bus, that they’re in a good mood,” he said, “because you need to be in a good mood to elicit proper learning.” 

Mr. Mattos not only values the education of a student but wants them to be an active participant in it. He smiles as he remembers his own teacher, Mr. Phenix, who kept the classroom conversational and encouraged the students to stay engaged. Mr. Phenix was “just a nice dude,” he recalled. “He was very relatable, he was very rational and he involved the students.” 

Mr. Mattos also cares deeply for his students as individuals. He said that his favorite part of the day is standing out in front of the building and greeting every student. “The students are so nice. They’re so friendly and polite. I love being a part of it and I look forward to being a part of it in the future,” he said.

In fact, one thing he misses about being a teacher is getting to know every student personally. “I strongly believe that every student should feel comfortable inside the building,” he said. “They should be embraced by the Hanover High community for the individuals that they are.” 

Our individual personalities are what make up the Hawk Nation, Mr. Mattos said. While this new term for our school population, and the big banner in the office, have been met with some curiosity, Mr. Mattos says school spirit and involvement are vital for a successful student. He jokes about how often he says that “a connected student is a better student.” When students find enrichment outside of their academics, he explains, it enhances their involvement and their love for the school, contributing to a better overall environment. This can look like anything from being involved in clubs or sports teams to attending art shows or performing in concerts. 

“If a student embraces the Hawk Nation and the Blue and Gold, and the pride that comes from being a contributing student to the building, it just elevates your mood and makes you feel like you’re involved and connected and you’re a part of something,” he said.

This sense of community is a way to derive purpose from coming to school every day which can feel tedious, repetitive, and absolutely boring at times. In an even greater sense, Mr. Mattos said, academics and involvement lead to the true purpose of high school, discovering yourself. 

“High school to me,” he said “is where the child finds themselves” and begins to become “an adult and a citizen.” It’s a chance for students to say “This is the person who I now want to be.” 

Mr. Mattos and his wife, Sheri, a third grade teacher, have two daughters who are teachers as well: Jillian and Samantha. They also have a granddaughter named Averie. In his free time, he enjoys golfing, vacationing and sitting around the backyard firepit with his family – even in the winter.