Get involved with intramural sports

On college campuses across the nation, intramural and recreational league sports have become a huge part of campus life as they incorporate community, teamwork, and wellness into students’ lives. Even on small campuses such as the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, intramurals can play a big role in student life. UMHB currently offers six intramural and recreational sports including basketball, soccer, sand and indoor volleyball, football, and the university is open to suggestions from the student body. “Intramural sports at UMHB give me the chance to participate in sports without the big commitment of playing on a varsity team,” junior business major Coby Kidd said. “I love that I can just come together with my friends on a Sunday night and goof around,” she said. Many students just like Kidd have the same feelings towards intramural sports. These programs are the perfect option for students who enjoy exercising and being active but are not involved in varsity sports. Exercise is not the only positive attribution that intramural sports bring to college campuses, they can also be a way to avoid the party scene. According to a 2018 study by Torstveit, Johansen, Haugland, and Stea in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, young adults who participated in organized sports had a lower likelihood of engaging in unhealthy lifestyle choices such as unhealthy dietary habits, low physical activity levels, high screen time, and sleep duration. This study is one example of the positive qualities that intramural sports promote. By students replacing partying with intramural sports on the weekend, college drinking levels can decrease while overall student wellness is improved. A 2007 study in the Journal of American College Health by Ward and Gryczynski found that students who feel pressured by the partying culture, which is cultivated by American pop culture, can use intramural and recreational sports as a positive activity outside of school. Participating in intramural sports can also form a sense of community and friendship with people that would not normally meet. Students create friendships and memories with people outside of their majors, classifications, and social circles. “In high school, I was on the volleyball team and made the majority of my friends that way,” Rachel Lucas, sophomore communications major at Colorado Christian University said. “So when I got to college, I didn’t know if I would find ‘my people’ again. “Joining an intramural volleyball team helped me to form relationships outside of my major and track team. I love my intramural pals,” Lucas said. Intramurals are an easy way to be involved on campus in a casual way. They create a sense of community and fun on...

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Crusader cheer team participates in national cheer tournament in Orlando
Feb11

Crusader cheer team participates in national cheer tournament in Orlando

The Crusader Cheerleaders returned to UMHB this month with some good memories and lessons learned. The cheer team went to Disney World in beautiful Orlando, Florida to compete in the National Cheer Competition on January 17. They competed against 24 other teams and eventually ranked seventeenth in the competition. The cheer teams were judged on spirit, technique, difficulty, and a game-day routine. The UMHB Cheerleaders performed the fight song, a chant, and a timeout routine. Freshman nursing major Ansley Howard had a good time competing at Nationals and thought highly of her cheer team members. “Our performance went well for our team,” Howard said. “We all felt like that was the best we had ever done, but the judges thought otherwise.” Howard went on to say that what the team took away from the competition was that “everything happens for a reason.” Freshman Lauren Berry remembers a positive experience at Disney. “When things aren’t perfect you can still have fun,” Berry said. She went on to say that the best part of the trip was “competing at ESPN Wide World of Sports, and that “…we got to compete in front of the castle.” Berry also said that she was looking forward to “continuing to grow the [cheer] team and learn more about the competition. Even though the cheer team did not win the National Cheer Competition, they did come back to UMHB with good memories and lessons...

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The architecture of agility explained: scoring, tumbling, and acrobatics
Dec05

The architecture of agility explained: scoring, tumbling, and acrobatics

UMHB now has an Acrobatics and Tumbling team. But what does that mean? How does that differ from gymnastics in the Olympics? In women’s gymnastics competitions there are three apparatuses used: vault, uneven bars and balance beam. Men’s gymnastics involve parallel bars instead of unevens, and rings instead of the balance beam.) In contrast, acrobatics and tumbling does not involve equipment. Acrobatics and tumbling consist of tosses, tumbling, pyramids and acrobatic lifts. Teams typically compete in six events: compulsories, acro, pyramid, toss, tumbling and a team event. The meets consist of two to four teams competing in head to head and team events. The National Collegiate Acrobatics and Tumbling Association defines acrobatics and tumbling as, “the evolution of different forms of gymnastics.”  Gymnastics is defined as a physical exercise of coordination and strength. A typical meet would go like this: The first event is compulsory. Each team competes with identical previously determined skills with a 10.0 starting value. This skill can be a back salto to ground or possibly a front salto (a flip that does not involve hands) dismount. These examples were used because they are the types of skills that most people think of when referencing gymnastics or similar sports. The second event is acrobatics (often shortened as acro), which is where two to four athletes compete against another team in acrobatic movements. Teams compete to win a total of 30 points in this event. “Acrobatics looks like athletic stuff that is really hard to do, and with just one wrong move something very bad could happen,” freshman pre-med biology major Chloe Wilson noted. Event three is the pyramid; teams compete to win a maximum of 30 points. For this event, teams want to use as few athletes as possible. This can help create more difficult pyramids, thus earning more points. The athletes manipulate their bodies to create the pyramids. Next, there is a halftime of approximately 15 minutes where teams warm-up for the second half of the competition. The team may practice on the practice mats, stretch their muscles or amplify their level of excitement for the next events. The next even is the toss. This event consists of four athletes tossing a fifth athlete in the air, while the fifth athlete completes flips and/or twists forward or backward. Two of the tosses will be solo while the third while is synchronized with another athlete who is being tossed in the air by four athletes of the same team. This event has a possible overall score of 30 points. The fifth event is tumbling. This event has a maximum of 60 points. Athletes have the option...

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Crusaders defend title against Texas Lutheran
Nov26

Crusaders defend title against Texas Lutheran

  By Sterling Dube Editor in Chief and Jaykwon Thompson Contributing Writer   The atmosphere at Crusader Stadium on Nov. 9 was electric as the stands were filled with fans ready to see the final home game of the regular season get underway. The captains for the game: Jonel Reed, Keith Gipson, Joey Longoria and Jefferson Fritz  won the coin toss and gave the first possession to Texas Lutheran. As if it was a precursor to the slaughter that would happen throughout the game, the Bulldogs’ return team bobbled the ball and barely recovered it for a small gain. This slowed down any momentum that the Bulldogs had at the start of the game and resulted in a quick punting situation. The Crusader offense was off to a very early start and got the football down to the Bulldogs’ 20 yard-line. However, two consecutive false starts quickly killed any chances of an early touchdown for UMHB. Kicker Anthony Avila completed an impressive field goal in an attempt to salvage the drive. The score was UMHB, 3, Texas Lutheran, 0. While the Crusader defense prevented the Bulldogs from ever having any real momentum, it did not mean that they had an easy time. There were many plays when the Bulldogs’ quarterback, Wade Freeman, forced the defense on a wild goose chance in the back field. He was often dodging and breaking tackles for 10 seconds at a time before either scrambling the ball himself or throwing a quick pass for a gain of a couple of yards. Defensive end Khevon Shepard was one of the only people who could say they sacked the elusive QB. After getting the ball back from Texas Lutheran, the Crusaders did what they do best. They battered the Bulldog’s defense until an opening was made. Running back Marquis Duncan used that opening in the defense to run into the endzone for UMHB’s first touchdown of the day, increasing the Crusaders’ early lead 10-0 after a successful field goal (PAT). Any attempt for the Bulldogs to retaliate to the touchdown in the second quarter were snuffed completely when a 4-yard sack followed by a key interception by defensive back Jefferson Fritz killed the Bulldogs’ offensive momentum for the rest of the game. From their now advantageous field position, the Crusader offensive, led by QB Jace Hammack easily got back into the endzone with a touchdown pass to WR Jonel Reed. After a successful PAT, the score was 17-0. The half continued at a snail’s pace with neither team getting the upper hand.  The Cru eventually got within field goal range and managed to snag an additional...

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Crusaders feel the heat against the Hardin-Simmons Cowboys
Nov26

Crusaders feel the heat against the Hardin-Simmons Cowboys

  For a game that was as intense and dramatic as the Crusaders’ 15-14 victory over Hardin-Simmons turned out to be, the weather seemed to convey a sense of calm before the storm. Clear skies, moderate temperatures, and light breezes were what fans on both sides of the gridiron were met with when they arrived at Crusader Stadium on Oct. 26. The atmosphere was tense, as for the first time this season the entire “away” section of the stadium was filled to the last seat with fans from Hardin-Simmons ready to cheer their team to victory. The Crusader captains for this game, junior defensive back Jefferson Fritz, senior wide receiver Jonel Reed, senior cornerback Keith Gipson and senior defensive tackle Joey Longoria met with the captains of Hardin-Simmons to win the opening coin toss that allowed Simmons’ possession of the ball first. The Crusader defense really came to play as their airtight defense easily snuffed out any attempt by Hardin-Simmons to gain an early lead. Senior linebacker Tevin Jones made an impressive sack for a loss of 13 yards, which really disrupted the repetitive Simmons’ offense. After several failed drives from both sides it was made clear that the first quarter did nothing to break the deadlock between the two powerhouse teams of the Division III American Southwest Conference. The second quarter started off with a bang for Hardin-Simmons as the Cowboys finally found the end zone in a well-run ground assault. With that the Cowboys drew first blood and took the score to 0-7. The Crusaders could not come up with a suitable comeback as the score remained the same for most of the second quarter. That is not to say that the Crusaders did not try to get on the board. Freshmen running back Jo’Vel McDaniel, on one play, went as far as to completely jump over a defender in order to gain a few yards. With only a few minutes left on the clock for the first half, senior QB Jase Hammack connected to senior WR Jonel Reed for a diving catch into the end zone. This catch finally put the Crusaders on the board. However, a missed P.A.T failed to make it a tied game. As both teams jogged into the locker rooms for halftime the score was Crusaders 6, Cowboys 7. The third quarter continued much like the rest of the game, with both teams failing to score more points up on the board. While the Crusaders failed many times to get into the end zone, they did manage to properly execute several laterals for a gain of a few yards each time and...

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Tennis defeats Howard Payne; falls to UT Dallas
Apr02

Tennis defeats Howard Payne; falls to UT Dallas

On Friday, March 29, both the men’s and women’s tennis teams traveled to Brownwood to face the Yellow Jackets of Howard Payne University. Before facing Howard Payne, the men’s team held a 4-2 season record, while the women’s team held a 0-2 record for the season. The men’s team led 2-1 after doubles and swept singles, leading them to an 8-1 victory over the Yellow Jackets. The women’s team took the lead during doubles and swept the bottom of the singles lineup, leading them to a 5-4 victory. After the victories over Howard Payne, the men’s team stood at a 5-2 season record and a 1-0 ASC record, while the women’s team had a 1-2 season record and a 1-0 ASC record. The next day, both teams traveled to Richardson to face the UT Dallas Comets. The men’s team earned a few wins in singles, but ultimately lost 2-7, while the women’s team lost 0-9 to the Comets. After the games in Richardson, the men’s team stands at a 5-3 season record and 1-1 ASC record, while the women’s team has a 1-3 season record and a 1-1 ASC record. Both teams will face Sul Ross State University on Friday, April 5 in Belton. They will travel to Georgetown the following day to face Southwestern...

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