Women’s volleyball gets national bid
Nov20

Women’s volleyball gets national bid

For the first time in program history, the Crusader volleyball team has received a bid to play in the NCAA Division III National Championship tournament. Following a season in which they won a school record 29 games, the team received an at-large bid after failing to secure an automatic berth by winning the conference tournament. Head coach Rob Frost said that the team’s determination has been one of the main reasons for its success. “I’m very excited,” Frost said. “The girls have worked extremely hard, and I’m very happy for them. There is no substitute for the girls’ hearts and the amount of effort they have put in.” The Cru opened the conference tournament Nov. 7  with a 3-1 win over East Texas Baptist University in Richardson.  The team lost the first set 25-19, but managed to win the next three by scores of 26-24, 25-14 and 25-23 to take the match. Sophomore hitter Lauren Powell, who led the Cru with 17 kills in the match, said the win gave new energy to the team. “We were fired up and had set our minds on winning the whole thing,” Powell said. The Cru advanced to face Hardin-Simmons in the next round where they were swept by scores of 25-16, 25-17 and 25-13. Sophomore setter Shelby Prather racked up 12 assists in the match to go along with nine digs. Powell said the loss was a surprise as the team wasn’t able to play to its full potential like they knew they could. “I believe we expected to be able to control that match better than we did,” she said. “In the end, we couldn’t pull it out, and I think that frustrated us because we knew exactly what we were capable of doing, and it just didn’t happen for us.” The team then faced ETBU for a rematch in an elimination game. The match was a mirror image of their first-round meeting as the Cru managed to win the first set 25-18, but lost the final three by scores of 25-20, 25-20 and 25-13 to force their elimination from the tournament. Powell led the team with 15 kills while Prather and sophomore setter Kendall Pye accumulated 23 and 19 assists respectively. Sophomore hitter Cheyenne Dowdey thought the team was competitive in the tournament given the lack of experience and youth . “I think we carried ourselves well in the conference tournament considering we are such a young team,” she said. “I think everyone on the team played their hearts out and put everything into the wins we received.” Powell said that following the loss, many of the players believed...

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Sport Spotlight: Alison Bullock
Nov20

Sport Spotlight: Alison Bullock

Alison Bullock is a senior exercise sport science major from Rockwall, Texas, and  attended Heath High School. Bullock has been a key player for the Cru all four years and served as a team captain. Her freshman year, she earned Honorable Mention All-ASC. Her junior year, she received Third Team All-ASC Honors. This season, Bullock earned First Team All-ASC Honors and was also named to the All-ASC Tournament team. Bullock helped the Cru this year to a school record of 14 wins. The Cru fell in the ASC Championship Tournament semifinals 1-0 to UT-Dallas. Once Bullock learned about UMHB, she stuck with her plan of becoming a Crusader. “I looked into the school, and I came here, and I thought it was a really nice campus. I liked a lot of the girls that played on the (soccer) team, and it just drew me in,” she said. Bullock has enjoyed the relationships she has made playing soccer. “I really just like the friendships you make … Especially here, UMHB, it was like a huge family,” she said. Her favorite soccer experience happened this fall. “The conference tournament this year was my favorite memory. We hadn’t made it until this year and it was just a great way to end my senior year,” she said. Bullock’s sister, Taylor is also a part of the team. Taylor played for the the Cru and now serves as an assistant coach. Both sisters have enjoyed success with the Cru program. Alison said, “It’s nice to have her there all the time. She’s always been involved with soccer just as much as I have. It was fun being able to spend that time with...

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Lady Cru soccer finishes season after loss to UT-Dallas
Nov20

Lady Cru soccer finishes season after loss to UT-Dallas

The ball crosses the line as the crowd erupts in screams of joy as the women’s soccer team makes it to the semifinals of the American Southwest Conference playoff tournament. Head Women’s soccer coach and UMHB Alumnus Barry Elkins said. The shot “was the most amazing finish I’ve ever seen. In all my years of playing soccer, I’ve never seen a winning goal like that.” Elkins, a former soccer player for the university from 1992-95, became head coach last year. He has already helped coach the team into its first winning record in four years and received ASC Coach of the Year. The tournament Nov. 7-9 put the team to the test. Elkins said, “This was our first trip, and I had no experience in the ASC tournament. We played pretty good, finishing 2-1 against Concordia scoring the last second, [then] played University of Texas at Dallas in the semifinals. Although the Cru fell short, there was still plenty to be proud of. “They had a goal in the end to win the game. We didn’t make any real mistakes that stood out,” Elkins said. The team featured seven freshmen starters. One is freshman nursing major Kathryn Parker. She received ASC Offensive Freshman of the Year after leading the ASC in shots (74). “No one knew what to expect. I felt really good though. I had my goals, but I didn’t know if I could accomplish them,” Parker said. The Cru faced adversity all year but fought through it all.Parker said the training “was working for us. The closer we got to the tournament you have more injuries that you have to worry about because you’re worn out from the season.” A big loss came when the team had to play without one of their leaders. “Our center back Charis Brantley got hurt and it really affected our second game because of how much she contributes to the team.,” Parker said. The Cru have a lot to look foward to next season. Elkins said, “as well as we did, we can improve. This gave us a cornerstone for what’s to...

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The Cru remain undefeated
Nov20

The Cru remain undefeated

The Cru finished out ASC conference play this past weekend against Mississippi College in a 56-30 win against the Choctaws in Clinton Miss. The win boosted the Cru’s overall record to 10-0 overall and undefeated in conference play. The Choctaws played the Cru closer than any other team this season, trailing only by a touchdown at half. But after the 56-yard pass to senior tight end Eric Nelson early in the second half, the Cru never looked back and cruised to victory. “Mississippi College is a good football team and we knew we would have to come out and fight. We weathered the storm and came out with the win with the help of big plays on offense and defense,” senior safety Cody Jones said. Jones was the leading tackler for the Cru with nine tackles and two intercepted passes to set up the Crusaders explosive offense with good field position. The competitive play was no surprise to the Crusaders, who had been preparing for a tough match all week in practice. “Mississippi College is playing well and keeping everything within the framework of the offense and defense. They have beaten everyone in the conference except Louisiana College,” head coach Pete Fredenburg said. Quarterback Zach Anderson kept up the good work, passing 14-20 with three touchdown strikes, tallying up 180 yards in all. The Crusaders were balanced against the Choctaws with senior running back Elijah Hudson carrying the ball well and racking up more than 100 yards on the ground. “I think we played well, it was good to get out there an get tested a little bit. But even 10 games in we still have work to do,” Hudson said. Most programs would be content going into the postseason 10-0 and crushing their opponents by at least three touchdowns every game.  But the Cru are not done polishing their skill sets in all aspects of the game. “We are working hard to improve our front four pass rush and our screens on offense,” Fredenburg said. But Fredenburg does acknowledge the success that his squad has had this season. “We are playing very well right now and hope to continue the improvements each week,” he said. It does not matter who the Cru face in the playoffs, players know  they own their own destiny from here on out. “I feel like we are one of the best teams in the nation, but at this point that doesn’t mean anything. From here on out, each game will be the biggest game of the season,” Hudson said. Winning on Saturday was something that will stick in the minds of all of...

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Military honored with Crusader victory
Nov20

Military honored with Crusader victory

The Cru dedicated their last home football game of the season to the military. Active duty members and their families received wrist bands, free food and admission to the Nov. 8 game against East Texas Baptist University. The Cru won 65-10. In honor of the guests, the university’s ROTC program presented the colors as the Black Shirt Spirit Band performed the national anthem. At halftime, the Sader Belles joined the ensemble to put on a show that paid tribute to the brave and wowed spectators who applauded loudly. Junior pre-physical therapy major Holly Millican attended the Nov. 8 event. She’s been  and active member in the ROTC program for the past four semesters. “I enjoyed representing ROTC at the Military Appreciation Day. UMHB recognized the military and service members who attended the game as well as the ROTC Color Guard. My role was to represent the Army and … ROTC by attending the game in uniform and receiving thanks from civilians at the game,” she said. Millican believes it’s necessary to take time to honor those who serve because, “soldiers sacrifice their time on a daily basis to defend our country and give each and every one of us freedom.” Another student who has been a part of ROTC since 2011, junior economics major Gabriel Martinez, who is originally from Puerto Rico, believes Americans should recognize the sacrifices soldiers make. “My favorite aspect of Military Appreciation Day is the total recognition of our hard-working Americans dedicating a lifestyle to serve our country,” he said. “Only one percent of the United States (population) serves in the military, so I think it’s very important for us as citizens of this nation to honor the brave men and women.” Junior music major Lantz Crosthwait is a trombonist in the Black Shirt Spirit Band. He thought it was a privilege to be involved in the event. He said, “It was an honor to recognize all those who served and be a part of a university that appreciates our...

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Kickball players don crazy costumes for festive game
Nov06

Kickball players don crazy costumes for festive game

The Avengers, Napoleon Dynamite, Crunk and a Whoopee Cushion were all present at the second annual Costume Kickball. Or at least good representations of these iconic characters all came out to the rec fields to compete for the second annual kickball championship. Campus Recreation hosted the event Oct. 31 to help celebrate the Halloween holiday. The event took the popular activity of kickball and combined it with traditional costumes to create an atmosphere of comedy and good sport. “This type of event targets all students, but specifically students who just want to have fun,” Director of Campus Recreation Sue Weaver said. “Students who might not be quite as competitive or athletic might also be attracted to this type of event, so we like to find events that might be attractive to this type student.” Weaver and the campus rec staff have started holding more of these stand-alone events lately in addition to the typical intramural activities. “A lot of students also don’t have the amount of time an intramural league sometimes requires,” she said. “One-night events are also great for them.” Four teams signed up for the kickball tournament: Trans-Am, Suns out Guns out, Here Come the Runs and last but not least SGA, a group comprised of the university’s politicians. Play commenced at 5:30 p.m. and from the outset it was apparent that the teams’ focus was on a good time, not necessarily a flawless kickball performance. The good nature shared between the competitors became obvious at one point when a first baseman toppled over into the mud in a tangle of ostrich and human legs; the victim along with everyone else shared a good laugh. Junior marketing and economics double major Ryan Sewell was dressed as a whoopee cushion when he showed up to play for team SGA. He enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere but was also trying to make some noise in the championship run. “I like that people have some ridiculous costumes and it’s just really laid back and people are having fun,” Sewell said. “I mean I’m trying to get an intramural championship shirt, so once I found out I get a shirt for winning, no holdbacks.” Luckily for Sewell and company they won their first game in dominating fashion, getting their chance to play for a kickball title. In the championship game, SGA got off to a quick 8-0 lead. For a while it looked like SGA would run away with the game, but Suns Out Guns Out wasn’t going to go away without a fight. In the bottom of the seventh inning Suns Out Guns Out finally got their offense going kicking off...

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