The Wessex Wire

The Student News Site of West Essex Regional High School

The Wessex Wire

The Wessex Wire

Marching band drums up a win at MetLife

Photo courtesy of Alex Chen
West Essex’s marching band finished with the highest score among their group on Oct. 7 at MetLife Stadium.

West Essex’s marching band finished in first place in the Ludwig Musser Classic at MetLife Stadium on Oct. 7, the first time in school history they have won such an honor.

West Essex was pitted against 12 other schools within the Tri-State Area at the midseason competition. In the Group 2A division, West Essex won best color guard, visual and music. Additionally, they accumulated the third highest score among 50-75 other bands at the whole event.

Band teacher Elise McAloon led the Knights to this feat, and said she felt pleased with the win after the hard work that went into preparing for this incredible competition. 

 “It felt really good to see the look on their faces when they called us for first place,” McAloon said. “West Essex has never won this particular competition before in the past, let alone get such a high score. I felt rewarded just to see them succeed.”

A good marching band must be tightly-knit and well-coordinated when performing, which is certainly not an easy task. However, West Essex’s Marching Knights are just that, thanks to one of McAloon’s mottos.

“We use the saying ‘Practice like you’ve never won, perform like you’ve never lost,’ ” McAloon said. “And that’s helping them progress through the season and keep them pushing towards getting better.”

The grind of being in the marching band is certainly large, and its tough to keep the large group composed and coordinated together. However, McAloon truly believes in her “practice like you’ve never won, perform like you’ve never lost” motto to keep students going.

“Be very confident when you’re performing … because confidence will help them succeed and help them put on a great show,” McAloon said.

The Marching Knights have strong chemistry, and the band members have gotten close over the year. They became like a family to achieve this tremendous accomplishment.

“Everyone has strengths, everyone has weaknesses,” McAloon said. “I call them a family a lot of the time because they are as strong as your weakest player, so they need to always encourage each other, help each other and work on improving themselves throughout the season.”

Members have been able to master their craft performing in the marching band and have enjoyed their time as well. Senior Aidan Leifer has been a part of the marching unit since his freshman year, and is delighted to have spent four years with a great group of people.

“The best thing about band is getting better at instruments and spending so much time with a cool group of people,” Leifer said.

Behind the Byline
Ryan Conway
Ryan Conway, Sports Editor
Ryan is a Sports Editor for the Wessex Wire (Class Of '24) that likes sports and video games. Usually raging about the Mets or Jets, Ryan enjoys bonding with friends and family, and discussing sports with others.
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