Sports column: MLB dreams don’t come true
Feb08

Sports column: MLB dreams don’t come true

Published in the February 8, 2017 issue of The Bells We all have that outlandish childhood dream; that is an unobtainable goal that we think we will undoubtedly reach at some point in our lives. My boyhood dream was always to become a professional baseball player. I never realized how hard that would be to accomplish. And realizing just how far away I actually was to that dream leaves a bitter taste in my mouth. The odds each player has to overcome in order to make it to Major League Baseball (MLB) are almost insurmountable. According to the NCAA, just seven percent of high school baseball players make it to the NCAA and only .003 percent ever end up on an MLB roster. It never enters our minds that this is not just a game for these players— it is their livelihood. We see the big-time contracts on the news— players signing nine-figure contracts. But for most professional ball-players, it is a struggle. There are approximately 6,000 players currently in the MLB minor-league system. According to CNN Money, the players at the lowest level of the minor-leagues are making $1,100 a month and working close to 70 hours a week. This is well below minimum wage. So, while being a professional athlete is a full-time job, many minor league players have to get second jobs in order to continue pursuing their dream. Another thing that generally goes unprocessed, is just how many baseball careers have come to an end due to injury. This is where my story lies. While possibly possessing the necessary skills to succeed in the field, my baseball story was struck down before it had a chance to flourish. As is the case for thousands of players around the world, especially for pitchers. Injuries have become an increasingly prominent part of the baseball landscape. Any way you put it, the game so many love, has the ability to dash the dreams of exactly that many. But those of us who love the game will go on loving it until we no longer have that ability. And those with dreams of the bright lights of Yankee Stadium will keep dreaming until they wake up in Yankee Stadium or wake up in...

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Swishes coming true: An overview of intramural basketball
Feb08

Swishes coming true: An overview of intramural basketball

Published in the February 8, 2017 issue of The Bells Heart pounding. Beads of sweat dripping. The thrill of running back and forth and dribbling the ball with only one goal in mind – making a basket. Created in 1891 by a physical education instructor named Dr. James Naismith, basketball has become one of the most renowned pastimes in the United States. The sport has been ingrained in today’s culture. When most people think of basketball, they picture NBA stars such as Michael Jordan, LeBron James and Stephen Curry. Some UMHB students got the chance to feel like these mega stars for a moment, when they signed up to participate in the university’s intramural basketball league Many players have had past experience playing basketball and bring that feature to their teams. Robert Harris, a junior exercise physiology major who is on the men’s 5v5 team Play2Win, has had plenty of practice on the courts. “I’ve loved to play basketball since I was about ten,” Harris said. Another student, Sarah Moshier, a senior nursing major who is on the women’s 5v5 team TuneSquad, has also had previous experience with basketball prior to joining intramurals. “I’ve been playing basketball since I was nine or ten so it’s always been something I really love,” Moshier said. “I played basketball in high school so it just made sense to continue playing in college.” Besides having experience, another reason some have joined intramural basketball is to learn more about teamwork and getting along with a lot of different people. “[My favorite part is] just playing with my team and learning how to play with people you don’t play on a team with all the time,” Harris said. One thing that many basketball players agree on is that playing a game is a really good workout. Running back and forth on the courts can burn off a lot of calories. On top of that, basketball can also help to ease stress. “It’s good stress relief to be able to run around and do something I love in the midst of all the nursing school chaos,” Moshier said. But perhaps the most important aspect of being on a basketball team is to have fun and form friendships. Moshier has been on the same team with her friends, TuneSquad, for three years. “I have made a lot of lasting friendships since I really had to reach outside of my usual circle to find girls that could hoop,” Moshier said. Maya Kovalic, a freshman math major who is on the women’s 5v5 team Day Old Pizza, says that she enjoys playing basketball because she gets to laugh, have...

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Cru wins National Championship! – The Band, Cheerleaders,  and the Saderbelles
Jan25

Cru wins National Championship! – The Band, Cheerleaders, and the Saderbelles

Published in the January 25, 2017 issue of The Bells Despite long hours on a cramped bus, frigid Salem temperatures, and even a bus breaking down, the Black Shirt Cru Spirit Band, the Sader Belles, and the cheerleaders took the 20-hour bus ride to Salem, Virginia to help cheer Cru Football to the National Championship. The group left Bawcom Student Union for Salem, Virginia at 5:00 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 15. They were given the opportunity to spend Thursday night at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel before driving the rest of the way to Salem the next morning. The group even ran into some bus trouble as one of the buses carrying the Sader Belles, cheerleaders, and half the band had to pull over on the side of the road due to engine trouble. The students transferred to the fan buses for the remaining hour drive. Upon arriving at Salem Stadium, the band, cheerleaders, and Sader Belles put on a mini CRUise for ESPN, the football players, and the adoring fans. The band and Sader Belles performed a pre-game show on the field in lieu of a halftime performance. Sader Belle sophomore nursing major Amelia Enokian believes dancing at the Stagg Bowl is a memory she will treasure forever. “We were definitely honored that we were able to dance before the game since most schools don’t really take their dance teams,” she said. “I remember exiting the field, and I had smiled so much that my teeth were so dry that I couldn’t stop.” During the game, the group cheered, played stand tunes and kept the enthusiasm alive as the temperatures steadily dropped. “I was glad that we could support our team and provide the spirit necessary to lead them to victory,” senior bass drummer Music Education major Ashley Wallace said. “I had a blast getting to hang out with my friends at the Gaylord Hotel, as well as enduring the cold...

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Cru wins National Championship! – The Fans
Jan25

Cru wins National Championship! – The Fans

Published in the January 25, 2017 issue of The Bells In December, students, parents and fans alike all traveled to Salem, VA to cheer the Crusader football team to their National Championship win. These fans got to experience the game of a lifetime for any UMHB football fan. Mike McCarthy, director of the Campus Activities Board sent six buses full of students, a total of 336 fans, to help cheer on the Cru football team. Although planning for this adventure started about a week-and-a-half before the Stagg Bowl, it didn’t take long for every spot on the fan buses to be filled. The lucky fans who earned a spot on the trip received transportation, a stay at the Opryland Hotel, a ticket to the game, a t-shirt, and a spirit sign. “It was a lot of quick planning, but it was totally worth it to give that experience [of going to a national championship game] to the students,” McCarthy said. Isaac Felan, a sophomore EC-12 Physical Education major, was one of the students that was able to go to the game. He said the experience was a memorable one. “It was an experience for a lot of students; being the loudest we’ve ever been at a game, but also the coldest,” Felan said, “It was awesome to see the guys play and win.” Sharon Rately, a parent that attended the game said, it’s not every day that the “small town” guys become the heroes. “Small towns and thriving cities alike were able to be united as one to support our Crusaders,” she said. The fans that were able to attend the National Championship game cheered their hearts out for the purple and gold, even in the frigid Virginia temperatures. But most attendees said it was worth it to create lasting memories and watch their team become National Champions for the first time in the history of the UMHB football...

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Cru wins National Championship! – The Legacy
Jan25

Cru wins National Championship! – The Legacy

Published in the January 25, 2017 issue of The Bells We all have moments that we know we will remember for the rest of our lives. But when those moments coincide with the 70 men standing at your side, all working toward the same goal, it becomes something much greater. The NCAA Division III National Championship game was a special moment shared by the Cru football team that they will never forget. Unfortunately, few people will ever know the feelings and excitement of this moment. But, through the stories and recollections of those lucky enough to share the moment, those left out can try to understand. “It was great. Honestly, it was a relief, not just for me and the team but for the whole city of Belton. It was great to win one for them,” senior receiver Wykeyhe Walker said. He also shifted the glory to his defense, saying that throughout the whole game the defense was amazing and when senior linebacker Matt Cody caught that pick, he knew the team had won. “At that point I was just looking for my mom,” Walker said. “I climbed in the stands with my helmet on and everything. I was just happy.” Senior quarterback Blake Jackson said he just wants the legacy to live on forever. “For people to remember this as the team who was the first team, not only to win the first national championship, but the team that showed great brotherhood,” he said. Jackson, more than anything else, spoke of the familial feeling among the team. “That whole experience of celebrating with coaches and my brothers was a great feeling and will definitely be a memory I hold on to forever,” he said. Sophomore receiver T.J. Josey said the team really wanted to win not only for themselves, but for the past teams, alumni and the community. “The support for this team is outstanding and it was time to give back,” he said. This is a true testament to what can be accomplished when a team becomes more than just a group of teammates. This was a family, and that camaraderie carried them to the highest honor they could possibly achieve together....

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Cru Baseball preparing for the 2017 Spring season
Jan25

Cru Baseball preparing for the 2017 Spring season

Published in the January 25, 2017 issue of The Bells With a little over three weeks away from the first pitch of the 2017 season, the Cru baseball team has been hard at work trying to prepare for what looks to be a tough but promising season. Coming off an 11-28 record last year, this team has a lot to prove. But Head Coach Ben Shipp is confident that they can do it. “We are apprehensive and excited to start the season,” Shipp said. “We had a tough season last year. We got hit with the injury bug and we weren’t deep enough to handle it. Obviously going into this season, we don’t want to experience that again.” Shipp said the team has worked to overcome last year’s injury struggles and is looking forward to getting back on the field. “I’m always excited this time of the year,” he said. “I just can’t wait to get started.” This year’s team has been improving every day in many different areas, and Shipp believes that these improvements will lead them to a successful season. “I really like our pitching staff this season. We have been young for several years and we are finally getting to be a little older. I’m hoping that they are going to be the glue that holds us together,” Shipp said. He thinks the team has also dramatically improved their speed. “Pretty much everyone can run well,” he said. “We’re looking forward to playing a little different type of game than we have in the past. That’s always fun.” Shipp and the rest of the team know there are areas that they need to continue to improve on and they have their sights set on doing so this season. “This [year], we are aiming to cut down on the number of walks. We had way too many free passes last year,” he said. “Also, we want to be a little more aggressive at the plate. Last season, I felt like we took too many pitches and weren’t aggressive enough.” In order to reach their goal of winning the American Southwest Conference, Shipp believes there are many steps that this team must take. “Our first goal for every season is to win our conference championship. But along with that, there are steps we need to take. The first step is to get this team to play with confidence,” he said. “They are all very talented, but if we can get them to play with confidence, I think we can do a good job. The second step is to get the team to play together and believe in each...

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