Team hopes killer season to dig its way up from current stats

Third-year head volleyball Coach Kecia Davis attributes the volleyball team’s rough start this season to inexperience. “We’ve got a lot of young players,” Davis said. “We only have four players returning from last year, one senior, a junior and two sophomores. So we’re very young, and we’re still trying to kind of get that chemistry working.” Coach Davis is a 1986 graduate of UMHB and played volleyaball and basketball while she attended school here. When on the volleyball team, she won an MVP award. The volleyball team has had a rocky start this season with only two wins and 11 losses in overall play. “Our expectations for the season are just for the team to learn some chemistry and especially for the freshmen to transition into collegiate sports,” Davis said. “We’re basically trying to get them together as a team and on the same page, at the same time. They’re working hard on the court and in the weight room, and if each day we have some improvements that’s good enough for me.” UMHB is in the eastern division of the American Southwest Conference. With conference play having already begun last week, the Crusader’s playoff hopes are still very much alive. Though the team’s win/loss record is not the strongest, Davis says the team still may have a chance to make the conference tournament. “In our conference we were picked third.” she said. “The way things work for volleyball is we have an east division with six teams and a west division with seven teams. The top three in each division go to the conference tournament. So we’re just trying to get our foot in the door and get that third spot so as to see what we can do in the tournament.” Players also kept a positive outlook of the upcoming challenge facing the team. “I think the season will improve greatly once we start getting a little more comfortable with one another and picking up our pace,” sophomore management major and team co-captain Erin Maenius said. “We’re adapting to a whole new team. I think a big thing is just getting to know and getting used to everyone on the court together. Once everyone starts meshing well, I think we’ll start seeing a lot more wins in conference.” Maenius was not the only player who remained upbeat about the season. “I think the best thing we can do is just to keep everyone pumped up,” freshman exercise and sports science major Kelsey Gangl said. “During the middle of the game, we start to get down, and it seems like we can’t get our energy back. So I...

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True fans ‘stand ever proud and strong,’ the lazy sit

Gossip, incessant chatter and catching up with friends are supposed to happen at parties and gatherings, not football games. Too many people go to football games and don’t even know the score of the match when it is finished. If everyone sitting in the “student section” were as motivated as our Couch Cru captains, the team could gain an even greater home field advantage. Sports are exciting for both the players and fans; each feeds off of the other’s energy. The more excited that the student body is, the more pumped the players on the field get. Players put their bodies on the line each time they take the field, but some attendees reward this with a lack of encouragement and interest while their backsides are glued to the bleachers. They complain about not being able to see over the mammoth bodies in front of them, but refuse to stand up and grant the team the school spirit and encouragement they deserve. These “fans” are a virus that starts off affecting only a small group of people that spreads throughout the game into a bigger problem. Two sit to chat, then another joins, and another small group sits down to chat, and eventually a small army is sitting, complaining and gossiping. The situation is different in extended pauses in the game such as timeouts, halftime, quarter changes, injuries and blowouts, but for the most part students who are not hurt and don’t have physical disabilities need to stand with pride for the team representing the school as a whole. The school song even states “Dear Mary Hardin-Baylor, who stands ever proud and strong.” The almamater clearly says that UMHB stands. It does not “sit ever proud and strong.” Some “park it” out of laziness and a lack of enthusiasm. The first thing that comes to mind when seeing people who feel they can’t stand for the length of a football game is the movie Wall•E. The summer hit shows the future of the human race, stuck in space (no rhyme intended) and hefty as ever. Human laziness caused the body structure to change and led to a generation of obese, lazy and flat-out boring people. Why take a seat when everything around you is teeming with liveliness, when you can join the cheering, jumping and chanting student body? There are other places to sit. Those not wanting to be a part of the rowdy and supportive crowd of the Couch Cru can sleep with the alumni, faculty and parents who like to...

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New citizen adopts rights

Claudia Nuñez, secretary for President Dr. Jerry Bawcom, became a citizen during the university’s first naturalization ceremony recently. Bawcom said, “I think it was very patriotic of her, and I am happy for her and her family.” The Honorable Walter S. Smith Jr., chief district judge, presided as 349 other people received  citizenship Aug. 12. Nuñez was honored to have been a part of the historic campus event. “It was absolutely wonderful,” she said. “The university truly made it very special, not only for me, but to everyone present on that day. People kept telling me how beautiful the university was and  how warm and friendly. I feel very honored, humbled and proud. Proud to be an American.” Nuñez, who was originally born in Columbia, came to the U.S. in 1986 for political reasons. Though she still has many relatives in Columbia, her immediate family members are all American citizens. “My mother lives in Illinois and my sister in Tennessee,” she said. “My grandmother, many of my uncles, aunts, and cousins are still in Colombia, but a few live in Florida.” Nuñez wasted no time to begin taking advantage of her rights as a citizen. She said her first act as an American citizen was to register to vote. Immigration law will be an important issue for her future vote. “I have very strong feelings about the immigration process,” she said. “There is a lot that needs to be reformed and changed. We must do it with love and compassion towards those who are truly seeking a better life not only for themselves, but for their families.” Having finally completed the entire immigration process, Nuñez had this advice to give. “To those who aren’t citizens,” she said, “start early, do not wait, do not procrastinate. To those students who are born here, appreciate the rights that you have. You truly do not know how lucky you are to be born in a country that gives you many rights and freedom. Love, honor and protect your country, be grateful for your liberty and serve your country. Serve her well.” Sophomore English major Sarah Nuñez, Claudia Nuñez’ daughter, commented on her mother’s momentous day. “It was nice to see my mom become a citizen,” she said. “She’s wanted it for a long time, so I was glad to be a part of it. She’s very happy and full of pride for her new...

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Students’ time of service rewarded
Sep30

Students’ time of service rewarded

Seniors Tatenda Tavaziva and Ryan Trask reaped the benefits of their service and hard work in both the community and campus when they received the Heavin Servant Leadership award during the annual fall convocation. The accolade is based on servitude to either the campus or community, and recipients are put in the spotlight in order to serve as an example to the rest of the student body. Senior accounting major and student body president Tatenda Tavaziva received one of the awards and decided to donate $500 to Helping Hands. He said, “It is very humbling …. I could think of 20-30 people who deserve the award before me.” Tavaziva has served the community and campus by being active in First Baptist Church, Belton; leading Focus for the month of September and actively supporting the many sports teams at the university. “I really don’t think I deserve the award,” he said, “but I am excited to get it. I wish my parents were here to see it, but they are 14,000 miles away .… I feel like I have something to prove.” Senior Christian studies major Ryan Trask received the other award and designated $500 to be donated to Com-passion Inter-national, which strives to aid people affected by poverty among the world’s poorest countries. “I chose Com-passion because I really believe in the work that they do with impoverished children in the world. Com-passion does a great job of educating people (so) that they can make a significant impact in the life of a child for a very small price.” Trask served the community through Canyon Creek Baptist Church as a youth intern and has been heavily involved in campus activities, including Welcome Week and Revival. He said, “It is incredibly humbling to be a recipient of this award.” Vice President for Student Affairs Dr. Steve Theodore thinks highly of both Tavaziva and Trask, saying, “Here are a couple of people who are doing it right. Watch them.” The selection process for the recipients of the Heavin Servant Leadership award includes both faculty and student nominations and the representation of a “servant’s heart” in each person. The honor is sponsored by a permanent endowment from Gary and Diane Heavin of Waco, owners of Curves. The award is intended to emphasize the importance of philanthropy, ministry and community service among UMHB students. “It is all about serving others.” Theodore expects great things from both students and knows that classmates look to them as role models and inspiration. He said, “Given what I know about them and their hearts, I would expect to see them continue to...

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Fast food’s dangerous spread

Some may have heard the term, “you are what you eat.” For many, this means they are walking salt-shakers filled to the brim with grease and preservatives. In the documentary Super Size Me, filmmaker Morgan Spurlock ate only food from a fast food restaurant for 30 days to prove a point on an issue that faces college students on a daily basis. They should have taken a hint from his results, but it’s not likely. Though moviegoers were likely shocked to see Spurlock’s doctor’s diagnosis that he would die if he did not change his diet, they probably grabbed a burger on the way home. Many know the gruesome effect that the fast food industry’s products will have on health in the long run, but most simply don’t care or choose to ignore it. Americans continue to spend millions of dollars a year on the same establishments that feed them the poison causing their hospital bills. In his book Fast Food Nation, Eric Schlosser points out society’s dependence on fast food. “(It) is now served at restaurants and drive-through, at stadiums, airports, zoos, high schools, elementary schools and universities, on cruise ships, trains and airplanes…at gas stations and even at hospital cafeterias.” Schlosser points out that in the 1970s Americans spent about $6 billion on fast food per year. In the year 2000, that number had risen to more than $110 billion. “Americans now spend more money on fast food than they do on higher education, personal computers, computer software or new cars,” Schlosser says in his book. “They spend more on fast food than on movies, books, magazines, newspapers, videos and recorded music combined.” Though the amount of money spent on fast food is still significantly less than on grocery store food, a study by the agricultural publication Amber Waves points out that the amount of money spent on food from restaurants, including fast food places, is on the rise, while the amount spent on food purchased from grocery stores for home use is slowly decreasing. As obesity and cardiovascular problems run rampant, this shift in where money is spent in the United States should raise concern. Though fast food chains don’t kidnap people, their convenience and cheap prices lure many citizens who won’t stand up to the urge to splurge on a shake and instead try to eat a more healthy diet. Though buying food at the grocery store can seem more expensive in a single trip, it saves money in the long run. There are a wide variety of foods to choose from, and it allows for more health-friendly choices. Going shopping and cooking at home...

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