The Boys Basketball team will wear its white jerseys Friday in the WPIAL Championship game, so it’s only fitting to call for a White Out for fans in attendance.
As such, Mrs. Beck’s Visual Communications classes have been selling customized white t-shirts this week, a tradition in the buildup to a WPIAL Championship game.
With nearly 300 t-shirts sold, her classroom has been buzzing with dozens of students contributing to the effort to produce the custom designed t-shirts, which say “To The Pete.”
“It’s definitely the most t-shirts we’ve ever made before a game,” senior Nick Braun said. “We had more time to sell and make them compared to previous teams making the finals. It’s special because it’s something we can do to make everyone come together as one. It’s going to be a great experience, and it’s something everyone will always have to remember the game. If we win, it’ll make it that much better.”
Students like Nick and senior Tayla Germanich have assisted Mrs. Beck in producing customized t-shirts for school events for years.
“Mrs. Beck is an amazing teacher,” Tayla said. “She connects with every student really well and always helps us. She’s only one person, so when we can pull together and help her a lot of us step up. This is also something we can accomplish together, too. It feels like home in here, especially with a teacher like Mrs. Beck who you can always go to for anything.”
Roles get delegated in Mrs. Beck’s visual communications classes.
Some students will work on weeding the designs. Others will then press the designs onto each t-shirt. And even more will organize and label every t-shirt, which will then be delivered to staff and students.
“It’s important to have good communication so that we know what everyone is doing and so that we work together well,” Tayla said. “You just look around the room and see everyone working together. We’ve been doing this together so long that we’ve built up a lot of trust. It’s second-hand nature to all of us.”
“It really is all about teamwork and having a team process,” Nick added. “If anyone were picky or didn’t want to do a certain part, we wouldn’t be able to get 50 done let alone far more than 200 for the student section.”
Nick anticipates the largest student section – and crowd – of the season.
“This team’s accomplishment is massive, and everyone wants to support them,” he said. “A lot of people were motivated to show up to see them beat the No. 1 seed, Steel Valley. The game was tied so many times, and they did enough at the end to beat them.”
One of Nick’s best friends, Michael Butler, scored the game-winner to send Deer Lakes to the WPIAL Finals.
“He’s had so many clutch moments in soccer, so it had to come down to him last Monday,” Nick said. “It makes sense that it’d be him.”
Mrs. Beck, in between answering student questions, said she loves how much school spirit students show when a team has a successful run.
“As crazy and hectic as my classroom is during these big weeks, I wouldn’t have it any other way!” she said. “I love seeing everyone come together and participate – especially as students take on leadership roles!”
The game will begin at 5 p.m. Friday at the Petersen Event Center.