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Zahid Valencia

Zahid Valencia, a wrestler from Arizona State, shocked the wrestling world heard about Valencia will be suspended for using substances right after he won gold at the Matteo Pellicone International. Although it was a recreational drug and not a performance enhancement drug, Valencia was still suspended. Arizona will now had to rely on a new starter (Austin Clayton) for their last two competitions of their season. The Pac 12 championships were coming up soon and it was unclear if he would wrestle or not. If he was not able to wrestle he would no longer be able to wrestle at the NCAA tournament.

Valencia had a 3-0 record that led to dual victories. Valencia wrestled at 184 pounds and was ranked No. 1 for his weight class. Valencia was also a two time NCAA champion while wrestling in the 174 weight class. His overall record was 121-3, one of the highest amount of wins in ASU history.

His season record was 20-0. While Valencia was suspended for use of drugs, he was also not able to compete in the U.S. Olympic Wrestling trials. Losing Valencia as a starter for 184, ASU had a major disadvantage for winning the NCAA Championship. ASU’s coach Zeke Jones said. “Our goals remain the same, we want to kick some butt. This is still a really exciting group of guys. That’s why I’m keeping my chin up.”

Even though ASU lost a major contributor to the team, they still had multiple nationally ranked wrestlers including his brother Anthony Valencia who wrestled at 174 weight class. In his 2017 season, Valencia earned No.1 seed by being undefeated. He had to wrestle Mark Hall from Penn state, where he had lost and placed third in the championship. That was the same place Zahid Valencia made a name and reputation for himself.

About the Writer
Photo of Riley Thomas
Riley Thomas, Breaking News Editor

Riley is a Junior at Durant High School. He is the new Photo Editor and Business Manager for the PawPrint Newspaper. He also wrestles for Durant and loves...

Lily Belcher Feature

Lily Belcher has written for the Durant PawPrint since her sophomore year, where she made tons of friends that share her love of writing. Belcher said ,“I love journalism because I am able to talk to and interview people and then being able to get to know them and tell their story.”

Belcher will be freelancing for the Osprey this year. Belcher loves to write about sports, specifically baseball. Belcher said “I grew up watching baseball with my dad, we love watching our favorite team the Tampa Bay Rays. I love the organization with baseball, the field is not crowded with players, like football or soccer, but it is only ten people on the field playing at once, that allows you to see the different relationship between the players, the batters and the catchers.”

Belcher loves baseball, but she played flag football for freshman and sophomore year. She played flag football in middle school with a friend, so they both tried out for the Durant team.

“I love Durant`s flag football team because it has amazing coaches,” she said. “I`ve made a lot of friends through the team,” including another PawPrint staff member, Rachel Hesse. Belcher is an amazing addition to the PawPrint and will help continue to improve the PawPrint as Chief Editor this year.

About the Writer
Photo of Riley Thomas
Riley Thomas, Breaking News Editor

Riley is a Junior at Durant High School. He is the new Photo Editor and Business Manager for the PawPrint Newspaper. He also wrestles for Durant and loves...

Nick Travis Feature

Nick Travis is the Social Media Coordinator for the Durant PawPrint this year. He is currently 16 and in his junior year at Durant High School.

He has been working with the PawPrint ever since his sophomore year (2019-2020) when Mrs. Jennifer Kious inspired him, and fellow broadcast journalist Mason Gourley, to join newspaper and expand upon their writing and broadcasting skills.

Together, Travis and Gourley have become the face of a new source of news, the Durant PawPrint – YouTube Channel. They create fun, entertaining, and informative videos about Durant life, news, and just exciting features to make students’ weeks a little brighter. Their videos can be found at:

As a journalist this year, Travis aspires to become a better broadcast journalist and hopes to be recognized in this year’s FSPA (Florida Scholastic Press Association) video competition with an award.

Outside of school, Travis can be found working out and spending time with his friends. He can also be found working as either a cashier or grocery bagger at the local Winn-Dixie.

After high school Travis plans to go to college to be an orthodontist. After college, he plans to intern at an orthodontics office; then, either take over as head at a previous office, or open his own office.

About the Writer
Photo of Rachel Hesse
Rachel Hesse, Managing Editor

Rachel Hesse is a senior at Durant High School and the Managing Editor for the PawPrint Newspaper. Although new to the PawPrint this year, Rachel has been...

Bell Schedules 2020-2021

Bell Schedules 2020-2021

Stacie Cleary

Stacie Cleary

Competition season approaching soon for Cheerleading


One of the elite teams invited to the 2018 MAJORS competitions.

As competition season rolls around for cheerleading, many cheerleaders are preparing for MAJORS with their team. MAJORS is the most selective competition that only the “best of the best” get invited to attend. This competition is for senior level six teams to showcase the highest level of skills in front of the teams they will be competing against soon once again.

The 2019 MAJORS will be held in Indianapolis on January 17th, with over 5,000 spectator and thousands more watching online at home. The cheerleading world stops to watch these elite teams perform and compete for the title of MAJOR champion. They will display their elite level of talent, skills, and sportsmanship while they are on stage and during the readying processes beforehand. 

As of now the invites have been sent out to each team to get them excited and ready for MAJORS. They have been selected based on previous Worlds and MAJORS placements and their popularity in the cheer world. This year fans will see many familiar teams performing along with some new ones that have joined in all the excitement.

Before the competition even gets started these teams are in the gym practicing perfecting their skills along with filming. Each competing team will create a video showcasing some of their tumbling and stunting, as well with some of their athletes and coaches speaking on what hard work goes into this competition and why MAJORS is so special to them.

The various teams competing in MAJORS love taking part in this experience as it not only celebrates these athletes on stage but off the stage as well. Traditionally the MAJORS staff holds a reception the night before for the teams. The teams dress up and celebrate qualifying for MAJORS and spend quality time with one another from their team and the many others.

Friday the teams will line up to compete. While competing, the competitors are giving everything they’ve got to make their routine perfect on stage. Each stunt and tumbling pass they do must be executed perfectly in order to receive their highest scores possible. Once these athletes are on stage this is their chance to bring the title of MAJORS champion back to their home gym.

About the Writer
Photo of Marina Hawkins
Marina Hawkins, Social Media Coordinator, Photo Editor

Marina Hawkins is a junior at Durant and is the Photo Editor and the Social Media Coordinator for the PawPrint newspaper. She is also part of the Varsity...

About the Writers
Photo of Mason Gourley
Mason Gourley, YouTube and Multimedia Editor

Mason is a Junior at Durant High School. He is the Design Editor for the PawPrint Newspaper. He is a fan of the Chicago Cubs baseball team. He writes about...

Photo of Nick Travis
Nick Travis, Social Media Coordinator

Nick Travis is a Junior at Durant High School and the Social Media Coordinator for the PawPrint. He has an outgoing and creative personality. When isn't...

Summer Construction at Durant

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Disney Bans Smoking and Over-sized Strollers in its Theme Parks



Smoking regulations are now in affect at Disney theme parks.

Earlier this year, Florida’s Disney theme parks concluded that the toleration of designated smoking and large strollers would be banned from their facilities. Claims state that the announced ban will allow for guests to have a more enjoyable time in each park. The removal of such will allow for guests to move along more freely without the feeling of being congested by others who are taking up too much space.

While the ban has set to be in effect as of May 1st, Disney has also reported that loose and dry ice, generally carried by a guest containing the ice in a cooler, to also be banned. The report states the the loose and dry ice ban is in effect immediately after announcement.

Various sources have expressed their views on the matter and while some believe that the new policy is a plausible decision, others have expressed their annoyance with the ban.

According to the New York Times, the President of the International Theme Park Service, Dennis Speigel, stated that the Disney theme parks chose the “right course.” He continued to explain that in a family-oriented setting, nobody wants to encounter a person smoking.

Alongside the distraction of a smoking individual in a family-crowded facility, smoking in general poses a health risk toward the other guests inside the Disney parks themselves.

At Durant High School, 12th grader, Kyle Harper, explained that those who are smoking in the theme park create a hazard toward guests who have a difficulty breathing or struggle with asthma-related symptoms.

“Including myself, it’s not fair for those who have to worry about other people spreading hazardous smoke in the air at a theme park like Disney, where they should be able to enjoy their visit without worrying about symptoms acting up,” Harper said.

Even though smoking may be an enjoyable way for people to relax at their favorite theme park, other guests are put at an unfair risk. With the new rule being put in place, Disney hopes  that their action will allow all of its guests to feel safe from hazardous chemicals that put their health at risk.

According to a New York-based study in 2007, provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,  scientists concluded that the implementation of laws prohibiting smoking in restaurants, bars and other indoor workplaces would reduce the amount of hospital admissions for myocardial infarction in 2004.

Disney’s new rules will completely reduce the number of guests who are victim to secondhand smoking on theme park property.

In addition to the composed health risks, guests who are victim to secondhand smoking would face congestion within the theme parks due to guests taking up space to smoke. Confirmed in an interview by the Tampa Bay Times, the communications manager at Walt Disney World Resort, Lisa Mendillo, stated that designated smoking areas will no longer be available to guests to clear space in the park.

Another ban taking place to clear up the congestion within the walkways of Disney parks is the prohibition of oversized strollers. Strollers that exceed a width of 31 inches or a length of 52 inches will now be prohibited nder Disney’s new restrictions.

Photo credit to
Among the list of banned strollers, the infamous “wagon stroller” (pictured above) is no longer accepted into Disney theme parks. Photo by

Similarly to the smoking ban, the banning of oversized strollers will allow Disney fans to walk more freely among the parks.

Durant High School seniors, Delton Newsome and Omar Gonzalez, shared their views on the current circumstance of oversized strollers in Disney parks.

“A larger stroller could be used to contain important supplies that a parent may need to provide aid to their kids,” Newsome stated.

While it is important for a parent to meet the needs of their children, Newsome agreed with the Disney’s restriction because certain strollers may be excessive. Restricted oversized strollers allow for guests to walk around the park with more ease.

“The rule is justified for those who want to walk around the parks more freely because too many families take advantage of the walking space that Disney provides for every guest,” Gonzalez added.

In order to make the parks safer and easier to maneuver to guests, Disney’s new restricts are now in affect until bigger issues arise. For more information regarding Disney’s park restrictions and policies, visit the official Walt Disney World website.




Dark Chocolate is the newest ‘Oreo’ flavor on the market

Ever since it’s first production in 1912, the “Oreo” has not yet ceased to bring happiness among cookie fanatics everywhere. With it’s classic ‘cookie sandwich’ format, the presumed “milk’s favorite cookie” has made itself marketable to every person with multiple flavors and styles for the preferences of every individual.

Flavors such as “Chocolate,” “Cool Mint,” and “Birthday Cake” are among the most popular types of Oreos to date, and have been readily available since their distribution. As of late December, Nabisco announced that a new “Dark Chocolate” Oreo will start distribution at the beginning of 2019.

The dark chocolate-filled Oreo is an Oreo that replaces the original creme with a new dark chocolate flavored creme that is sure to make lovers of the cookie to crave another bite. As expected, the creme features a slightly bitter taste that will spark the taste buds of every dark chocolate fan.

Those who like the original chocolate-filled Oreo and are eager to taste a slightly more bitter version of the cookie are bound to enjoy their first bite of the new flavored Oreo.

Fortunately, every fan of the dark chocolate flavor will be excited to find out that Nabisco has officially confirmed that the “Dark Chocolate” Oreo will be a permanent flavor to stay on the shelves alongside other popular favorites.

Moving forward, more Oreo surprises are expected to continuously hit stores starting in early 2019.

As featured in another recent announcement from Nabisco, a limited addition flavor of the cookie is already available on store shelves to accompany Valentine’s Day in February. Nabisco pitched the cookie as a ‘sweet and tangy’ Oreo according to their description on the package.

To give these Oreos a taste, find their availability at a local retailer or visit the Oreo company store on

Saves The Day releases New Album titled “9,” pays tribute to the band’s career

Saves The Day is an American rock band that originated in 1997 in the state of New Jersey. They are well-known for their hit albums Through Being Cool (1999) and Stay What You Are (2001) which received very positive reception from both critics and fans. With darker themed lyrics combined with melodic hooks that catch the listener’s attention, Saves The Day has influenced many hit rock bands that will eventually make their own mark on the music industry.

Following their pop-punk release of the self-titled album, Saves The Day (2013), the band is back with a brand new album titled “9,” out of respect for the release being the ninth studio album officially produced by Saves The Day.

Saves The Day’s frontman, Chris Conley, took a different approach when he wrote the newest album. While their 2013 release featured more lighthearted songs with pop-punk vibes that differentiate the record from their past albums, 9 tells the story the band’s journey over the years. This time around, Conley sings of “walking the crescent moon castles in English sand” and “20 years go by like pages from a calendar blowing in the wind.”

From the early beginnings of the Can’t Slow Down tours to the current state of the band, Conley covers it all. The record’s run-time clocks in at about 44 minutes and features the song “29” that runs at about 21-minutes to describe Conley’s entire personal journey.

Below you can find the full tracklisting of 9 and a link to Saves The Day’s lead single for 9, titled “Rendezvous.”

  1. Saves The Day (2:34)
  2. Suzuki (1:19)
  3. Side By Side (3:12)
  4. Kerouac & Cassady (3:43)
  5. It’s Such A Beautiful World (2:11)
  6. Rosé (3:39)
  7. 1997 (2:47)
  8. Rendezvous (3:37)
  9. 29 (21:30)

The full album is available via Equal Vision Records. For more Saves The Day, visit

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