Sports Spotlight
Sep16

Sports Spotlight

Ben Hammonds is a senior business administration major from Flower Mound, Texas. Growing up, Hammonds participated in many sports, but favored baseball and soccer. Once he moved from St. Louis to Dallas, he decided to pursue his love for soccer. Hammonds is currently the team captain for the UMHB Men’s soccer team and plays the position of center forward. He has contributed to the team each season. His freshman year, he scored two goals. As a sophomore, he added another goal and earned All-ASC Honorable Mention. For his junior campaign, he was named to the All-ASC Second Team for scoring four more goals. This season, Hammonds and the Cru have begun this year with a road trip to the West Coast. Hammonds enjoys the freedom of the game. “My favorite thing about soccer is the freedom of it. Aside from free kicks there are no set plays, no timeouts or stoppages. Just 45-minute halves where players are free to do what they want to beat the opponent. I love my team. My favorite thing about the team is that we are truly brothers,” he said. Outside of soccer, Ben enjoys hanging out with his friends, taking in the Austin music scene and participating in student government. He is a representative for UMHB’s NCAA Student Athletic Advisory Committee and was once a member of the school’s Student Government Association (SGA) where he served as the athletics representative. Hammonds also enjoys watching soccer matches when he’s not playing in them. His favorite team is Chelsea FC, which competes in the Premier League. His favorite player is Frank Lampard, who is currently a member of the New York City FC. Because Hammonds has big aspirations for his career, he knew UMHB would be the right fit. “I had a few other offers from similar schools, but UMHB stood out to me. Coach Bankhead was a major factor in my decision. It was clear he cared about his players deeply and they respected him as well. I also had great interactions with the players on my visits and when I watched them play. UMHB is also beautiful. It was a really easy decision in the end,” he said. “One of the best decisions I have ever made.” Once Ben graduates this December, he plans to pursue a job in college athletics. However, he has not given up the option of playing professionally or being a member of a folk rock band. But before he graduates, Hammonds will be focusing on making an impact on his squad this season. “As a senior I hope to lead this year’s team to accomplish something special as...

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Football poised for another conference title
Sep01

Football poised for another conference title

As the fall semester begins, the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor football team begins their quest of winning their first NCAA Division III National Championship. The Cru are coming off an 11-1 overall record last year and have won the American Southwest Conference championship. There are multiple new and returning faces to the UMHB football program including Coach Luke Howard and Jack Johnson. Junior exercise and sport science education major Baylor Mullins, who plays safety for the team, is ready for football to begin. “I am very excited to get this season started. Although we won the conference last year, we didn’t win the national championship which is what we are looking for around here,” he said. “We still have tons of improvement, but I feel like this could be the year.” Junior exercise and sport science major Matthew McVey is a tight end for the Cru and is ready to hit the field. “I’m definitely excited about what this year has in store for us and continuing the tradition of winning the ASC championship along with making a run for the national championship. We have a lot of talent on both sides of the ball; we also have a lot of returners coming back mixed in with some new faces,” he said. According to D3Football.com, the Cru are ranked fourth in the nation in their preseason poll. Other familiar football powerhouses at the top of the rankings includes: the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, University of Mount Union, Linfield College and Wesley College. “Home games are so much better than away games. There’s nothing like coming out of the tunnel and seeing a sea of Cru purple and yellow,” said sophomore management major, Haston Adams. “Cru-Nation is definitely deep and they are always live. The team plays more relaxed and it seems like we are sharper when we play in Crusader Stadium.” The Cru are currently 14-2 since playing their home games in Crusader Stadium. This season will mark the third year the Cru will play truly at home. This season, the UMHB football program’s motto is “Earn It.” “After an upset last season, our coaches decided to rebuild the team from the ground up and if you wanted a spot on the team you had to ‘earn it,’ McVey said. “Everyone started from the bottom and had to work their way back to the top during a competitive offseason.” The team’s quarterback, senior marketing major Zach Anderson, trusts his teammates and believes everyone is committed. “Overall I feel that we have an extremely talented team this year that is very dedicated to getting better each and every day. I believe...

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Men’s volleyball makes strides
Feb04

Men’s volleyball makes strides

The men’s club volleyball team began last spring and has continued to expand. The team has already began their season by travelling across Texas competing in tournaments and matches from Waco to San Marcos to College Station. The team competes in the National Collegiate Volleyball Federation which governs collegiate volleyball clubs all over the United States. The men are working hard to compete in the NCVF National Championships in Kansas City, Missouri, April 9-11.   This year’s Cru roster consists of 15 students of all ages, ranging from freshmen to seniors.   Aaron Jackson helped develop the club team. He is a junior double major in business management and marketing who currently serves as the team’s captain.   “My favorite part about being on the men’s volleyball team is being able to play college volleyball at the division-1 national collegiate volleyball federation level. It has always been a dream of mine to play volleyball in college, so now I get the opportunity to do so and building memories with these awesome guys,” he said.   Jackson grew up watching his sister play which sparked his interest in the sport.   “During my junior year in high school, I started playing and going to open gyms, trying to learn as much as possible. That brought me to love the sport and want to play at a collegiate level,” he said.   The team’s current coaches are Elleny Ohendalski and Ally Bermea. Ohendalski, a freshman nursing major, found out about the team last semester from last semester’s head coach.   “I joined the team this past fall, Katelyn Holm, who was the head coach at the time, asked me to practice one day. Then I just continued with it throughout the semester. Now she has graduated, and I am still staying at the position of assistant coach.”   Junior exercise sport science major Andrew Flores and junior finance and management double major Drew Davies enjoy being a part of the squad.   “It started up in the spring semester, 2014. I have been a part of it since it started. My favorite part of being on the team is just being able to play the game that I grew to love with friends,” Flores said.   “My favorite part of volleyball would have to be the sense of community. We take volleyball pretty seriously and practice four times a week, sometimes at five in the morning. It’s just a really good feeling when the whole team is helping you get to where you need to be and that I get the opportunity to help other members reach their full potential as...

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Cru sports foresee promising spring season
Jan22

Cru sports foresee promising spring season

As the new year begins, the men’s and women’s basketball teams have hit the middle of their schedules. Both teams are currently in position to qualify for the ASC Championship tournament, but need to finish their regular seasons with more wins to capture the post season spot.   The Lady Cru are in seventh place with a 8-7 overall record and 4-6 in conference play. The men are in second at 11-4 and are 8-2 in conference.   The men defeated conference top-ranked Hardin-Simmons University in overtime 90-81 last week.   Freshman pre-physical therapy major Meghan Turner plays point guard for the Lady Cru. Meghan talks about how they are preparing for the conference championships.   “We are taking every day one by one and making every practice count,” she said.   Junior exercise sport science major Tori Tucker mentions the team’s preparation.   “We work hard every day and we know what’s at stake. We want to not only do this for ourselves, but for our seniors. We don’t want to be sitting in Belton during the tournament knowing we should be there. We are ready and determined to turn this around this next go around,” she said.   Tucker also enjoys the atmosphere the Crusader fans bring to the game.   “Having students back on campus is nice for the games due to more fans and more energy in Mayborn Campus Center. Having student life back on campus also brings liveliness on games days and knowing that they will be there on game night is exciting. We love our fans,” she said.   The Lady Cru and Cru will host Sul Ross State and Howard Payne University this Thursday and Saturday in Belton. Tip-off is set for 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Thursday and 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Saturday at the Mayborn Campus Arena.   Both match ups are conference games that will impact seeding in the ASC post-season this March.   The other spring sports, baseball, softball, tennis and golf have begun the first steps in their spring seasons.   Senior exercise sport science major Angelie Juaneza is ready for the tennis season to begin.   “I’m excited for what the season has in store for us. We are going against a handful of tough teams that we haven’t played against before. It’ll be a season full of new experiences for sure,” she said. “Being a senior, I want it to be the best season ever, but tennis is a team sport, so everyone has to work together in order to achieve our goals.”   Junior sport management major Elizabeth Davis reflects on the...

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Fall sports wrap-up
Nov25

Fall sports wrap-up

With the fall semester coming to a conclusion, the season’s sports have wrapped up and the winter sports have begun.   The men and women’s soccer teams finished their year, qualifying for the American Southwest Conference post-season tournament.   The men ended their year with three wins of their last five games, tying the regular season champion, UT-Dallas. The Cru fell in the ASC Championship semifinal round to the champions, though, collecting five individual awards. The Quad-Sportsmanship Athlete of the Year was given to Isaiah Minick along with multiple All-ASC Selections: Case Carnes (1st team), Ben Hammonds and Julio Mar, Minick (2nd Team), and John Williams (3rd team).   Graduate assistant coach Ben Allen reflects on this year’s squad.   “This year was very special. It’s very cool to see how much the program has grown since I’ve played and to see this year’s seniors graduate who helped when I was a student assistant. We finished strong and would have liked to win it all, but gave UT-Dallas a very good game and have no shame of how we played,” he said.   The Lady Cru soccer team also finished their season, winning three of their last five match-ups. The ladies fell in the ASC Championship semifinals to Howard Payne.   Cameron Shivers was awarded the Offensive Freshman of the Year. Seven members were given All-ASC Selections: Charis Brantley, Kathryn Parker made 1st team, along with Shivers. The ASC 2nd team consisted of Nathallie Morales and Courtney Craig, followed by Miranda Aleman on 3rd team.   Senior business management major Ashley Teague will cherish the memories she made.   “It broke my heart knowing I couldn’t be out there on the field leading as a captain, but I knew God had a different plan in mind for me,” she said. “Even though we didn’t do as well as we hoped, I’m thankful for the memories and how far the team has come since my freshman year.”   The Lady Cru volleyball team finished their regular season on a high note by capturing the ASC title and hosted the conference championship. The ladies continued their success by winning the ASC post-season tournament as well. The Cru then travelled to nationals, where the fell in a heartbreaker 3-2 to Claremont-Mudd-Scrippes.   Senior math education major Bianca Patterson enjoyed being a part of the team.   “The trip to nationals was a great experience. We went last year, and it shows the growth of the volleyball program that we made it again this year. Winning conference was such a blessing,” she said.   Junior mathematics major Kendall Pye is excited for next...

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