Freshman track student aims for Olympic trials in 2020

Some athletes bring an entirely new meaning to the phrase “bred for success.”

Michael Stewart, Assistant Sports Editor

Some athletes bring an entirely new meaning to the phrase “bred for success.”

Freshman Hadyn Ashley can easily be placed in that category.

Hadyn Ashley has won the heptahlon and finished seventh in the high jump contest at the NCCAA championship. / Photo Courtesy of Dakota Kapelle

Only in his first track campaign as a Bison, Ashley carved his name into the Oklahoma Baptist University history books as a NCCAA (National Christian College Athletic Association) National Champion and an NCCAA All-American.

“It is truly something I will never forget,” Ashley said. “The trip to New York for nationals was the best moment of my freshman year so far.”

The freshman won the heptathlon event with a facility-record 4,935 points.

He was also seventh in the high jump at 1.83 meters.

In addition to his National Championship, Ashley was named Field Athlete of the Meet and NCCAA Athlete of the Week for his efforts.

To put it simply, God’s gifts are on full display every time Ashley competes.

Ashley, the former No. 1 ranked high school decathlete in the U.S., is now a 15-time All-American over the course of his career.

“Some of my personal goals coming into my freshman year were to win the NCCAA indoor and outdoor national championships as a team and as an individual,” Ashley said. “Also, my goal is to be recognized as a Division Two All-American for indoor and outdoor track all four years as a Bison.”

So far, Ashley seems to be in the right track to become a first-class athlete.

“Thanks to Coach Mastin and Coach Heard, I have grown a lot this year in all of my events,” Ashley said.

“They have shown me things I have never really thought or heard of before, and they have really tried to push me to strive for a higher level.”

The sky is the limit for Ashley, who still has three more years to learn and grow.

“The track team pushes each other to be the best we can be,” Ashley said. “It has really paid off.”

Ultimately, after his first season as a Bison, Ashley’s end objective is to qualify for the Olympic Trials in 2020 in Eugene, Oregon, and make the U.S. Olympic team.

With his stellar indoor track season wrapping up, Ashley now turns his sights toward outdoor track season and fulfilling his expectations.

Second home win for OBU Lacrosse

“We have been doing a great job defensively lately,” Morrison said.

By Kervy Robles, Sports Editor

Last Friday, the Oklahoma Baptist lacrosse team hosted the University of Saint Mary (Kan.) in search of its second- straight home victory.

The Lady Bison celebrate a 16-3 victory over University of St. Mary (Kan.) last Saturday. / Photo Courtesy of OBU Athletics

“We always do a film study on each team before we play them,” junior Allison Ingrim said. “We knew we could out perform them if our intensity and effort was up.”

It was only the first minute of match when senior Paige Morrison scored the first of five goals she registered Friday night.

“It was a great feeling be able to help my team,” Morrison said. “I have been working hard and seeing that pay off is always rewarding.”

The Lady Bison finished the first period with a momentary 13-1 score. Freshman Lauren McCormack contributed two goals while senior Hannah Dowell tallied a hat-trick (three goals in a match).

“I got one of my goals from a feed and the other two came from driving to the goal,” Dowell said. “I always push myself to be the best player I can be in hopes of bringing energy out of my teammates.”

In the beginning of the second period, the visitors reacted with a couple goals that put the Lady Bison in trouble.

“We have a bad habit of letting our opponent come back the second half,” Ingrim said.

“However, we were able to keep playing how we have been taught to play and scored another three goals.”

Despite St. Mary’s attempt to get close, the Lady Bison finished the game with a 16-3 score and showing key strengths.

“We have been doing a great job defensively lately,” Morrison said.

“We are also strong in offense making plays happen.”

The lacrosse team will make its RMAC (Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference) debut against No. 17 Regis (CO) March 11 at 11 a.m. at the OBU Lacrosse Complex.

The Lady Bison holds a 2-2 overall record in the 2016 campaign.

OBU pom squad qualified for nationals

“I am so ready to go to Florida and support my team,” sophomore Ellen Mathews said.

By Jaden Jennings, Contributing Writer

Courtesy Photo

Dancing at Oklahoma Baptist University is a relatively new activity.

However, the pom team has already secured a spot to dance at Nationals in Daytona, Fla., April 4.

“This will be my first ever team to take to Nationals,” head coach Amelia Patterson said. “The team goal is to make it to finals, but my goal for the team is just to walk away knowing that they did the absolute best they could.”

Despite the fact that nerves are running high for most, many of the girls are just as excited to be a part of the experience. 

“I am so ready to go to Florida and support my team,” sophomore Ellen Mathews said.

“We have been practicing all semester, and the team deserves to win at Nationals. I will be supporting them every step of the way.”

Sophomore Anastasia Robinson focused on the excitement and expectations toward Nationals.

“My personal goal is to just gain a memory that we are never going to forget,” Robinson said. “As well as to solidify relationships that will never fade.”

The team has already started an intense routine in order to reach their goals.

“The competitive team practices about 15 hours a week,” Patterson said. “This does not include the game day team, which practices about eight hours a week. Not necessarily in regards to the demand of the talent, but in regards to the work ethic required.”

Practice and work ethic is the main key for the Lady Bison, who also emphasizes on being positive individuals on and off campus.

Mathews analyzes more how dancing at OBU has helped her overall college experience.

“OBU is the best university I have ever been to,” Matthews said. “We are considered athletes as dancers, so it has pushed me academically and athletically overall.”

The team is not only striving to be better as individuals, but also really understanding what it means to be part of a team.

“My favorite part about the team is that we support each other,” junior Kayla Ham said. “We support each other not only in dance, academics and social events, but most importantly, we support each other in our spiritual walk.”

Finally, Patterson reveals why she decided to take the coaching position at OBU.

“The opportunity to work in such a Godly and Christ-like environment, it was very attractive to me,” said Patterson.

“On top of all of that though, I get to teach my passion of dance and make women not only better dancers, but better women of Christ.”

Lady Bison score 5-4 win over No. 9 NSU

“Before jumping into the court, I had a great feeling about the game,” Moosbacher said.

Kervy Robles, Sports Editor

Oklahoma Baptist women’s tennis team faces the 2016 season with new prospects in the roster.

Successful players such as Katya Shkot and Anastasia Baranova left a legacy hard to fulfill.

“It is a team with new faces,” student assistant Baranova said. “We did not know what to expect from the girls because the fall season was short.”

Freshman Kim Moosbacher has payed a significant role in the successful start of the season. / Photo Courtesy of OBU Athletics

However, the Lady Bison have gone over the expectations and accomplished an impressive 4-1 overall record in the beginning of the campaign.

The women’s tennis team has showed important strengths throughout the first five matches of the season.

“We have a very deep lineup, and we all really get along as a team,” senior Olivia Charvat said. “We like to go out with the mindset of ‘this just another match that we need to win’ no matter who our opponents are.”

Last Saturday, OBU visited Tahlequah in search of another Top 25 win against No. 9 Northeastern State University.

“Going into the match, we did not feel the pressure of facing a ranked team,” sophomore Madeleine Boepple said. “We know the type of game we all like to play, and we have been able to win in big moments so far.”

Charvat and Boepple won their single matches by 7-5-6-3 and 6-0-6-3, respectively.

However, NSU reacted rapidly and showed resistance winning two singles matches against freshman Rouxanne Janse van Rensburg and senior Alex Morales. 

With a tied overall score, it was turn for freshman Kim Moosbacher to give OBU a momentary lead.

“It was hard for me to win the first set, and in the second [set] my opponent got better and better,” Moosbacher said. “In the final set, I controlled my emotions, and it became one of the best matches of my life.”

Moosbacher won the match in a frenetic 6-4, 3-6 and 6-3.

It was time for sophomore Alex Bowers to extend the score for the Lady Bison.

“It was a very close match where my opponent never gave up,” Bowers said. “I try to always fight every single match. It was happy to be able to win for my team.”

Bowers dominated its opponent with a 7-5-7-6 match. Posteriorly, the Lady Bison struggled losing two doubles matches.

With parity in the overall score, Moosbacher and van Rensburg were responsible for the last match point.

“Before jumping into the court, I had a great feeling about the game,” Moosbacher said. “She [van Rensburg] makes everything easier for me and it ended up being a big win for the team.”

The Lady Bison earned a vital triumph, 5-4, against a powerful rival on the road. Now, the expectations are high for this talented team.

“We are looking forward to face new challenges,” student assistant Baranova said. “We are capable to get a ring. We all want to win that NCCAA championship.”

The Lady Bison will host Central Oklahoma March 1 at 2 p.m.

Vicente, un ejemplo de superación

“I was going to go to another university but I did not pass the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language),” Vicente said.
“Fortunately, OBU offered me to study in the English program with the option of playing football.”

Kervy Robles, Sports Editor

Kervy Robles, The Bison 

No hay duda que para alcanzar grandes metas, uno debe superar los obstáculos que se presentan en el camino.

Las diferencias culturales y el lenguaje son algunas de las barreras que los estudiantes internacionales encuentran a su llegada a la Universidad Bautista de Oklahoma.

Vicente Castillo, alumno de educación física, recuerda sus primeros días en esta institución con mucha gratitud.

“Yo iba a ir a otra universidad pero no aprobé el examen TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language),” dijo Vicente.

“Afortunadamente, OBU me ofreció estudiar en el programa de inglés con la opción de jugar fútbol.”

Vicente, originario de Peralta en el norte de España, enfrentó ciertos inconvenientes en sus primeros meses en Oklahoma.

“Al principio todo me costó mucho por el idioma,” comentó Vicente.

“El primer semestre fue muy difícil para mi, pero la gente en esta universidad me recibió con mucha amabilidad lo cual me servía de apoyo.”

Ante la severidad de las adversidades, el alumno Vicente estuvo cerca de rendirse y tomar una decisión crítica.

“En mi segundo semestre, le dije a mi madre ‘me voy a casa, no puedo más’,” expresó Vicente.

“Ella apoyaba mi decisión pero mi padre insistía que yo tenía que seguir con mis sueños. Lo pensé mucho y decidí tomar el desafío.”

Poco a poco, la familia Castillo dejó de recibir llamadas de nostalgia y comenzó a ver cambios en Vicente, quien se mostraba más optimista.

“Tratábamos de llamar todos los días por que andaba deprimido,” dijo Alejandro Castillo, hermano menor de Vicente.

“Las buenas actuaciones en el fútbol llegaron de la mano con buenas calificaciones. En poco tiempo, Vicente ya se había convencido que su futuro estaba en OBU. ”

El estudiante Vicente reconoce las grandes oportunidades que los Estados Unidos le ofrecía en comparación al sistema establecido en su tierra natal.

“En los Estados Unidos, el sistema educativo y el deporte están juntos” comentó Vicente.

“En España, tienes una sola opción: o juegas al fútbol o te dedicas a estudiar. No puedes hacer las dos actividades a la par.”

Por esta razón, Vicente emigró a este país en busca de determinados objetivos.

“Mi meta era obtener una carrera universitaria y jugar al fútbol,” expresó Vicente.

“Esta institución ofrece una educación excepcional y se ha vuelto mi segunda casa en estos cuatro años.”

Vicente no solo ha superado desventajas en el ámbito académico, de igual manera ha sobrepasado retos en el entorno deportivo.

“Llegué con 17 años y físicamente me faltaba mucho,” dijo Vicente.

“Al principio no encontraba el ritmo de competición y el primer año jugué poquísimo y no pude anotar ni un solo gol.”

A pesar de un primer año improductivo, Vicente trabajó duro para mejorar y los resultados no tardaron en venir.

“Me propuse seguir trabajando y ser perseverante,” comentó Vicente.

“El equipo empezó a mejorar y yo encontré mi mejor nivel. Poco a poco me volví un referente y comencé a marcar goles.”

Vicente no solamente se caracteriza por ser un alumno sobresaliente, sino que también es un atleta distinguido.

“Siempre he tenido en mente, que para ser mejor, solo queda trabajar,” dijo Vicente.

“Pasé de tener un pésimo año a terminar mi carrera como mejor delantero en la conferencia y siendo el capitán de mi equipo.”

El sueño aún no acaba para el estudiante Vicente, quien ve el futuro con ilusión.

“Voy a tratar de jugar fútbol profesionalmente en los Estados Unidos, ” expresó Vicente.

“Luego, voy a continuar una maestría de negocios en España.”

Vicente es un gran ejemplo de superación para muchos estudiantes internacionales y finalmente deja un consejo para los jóvenes.

“En el inicio uno se siente solo y deprimido, pero es cuando más fuerte debes ser. No has venido desde tan lejos para rendirte tan fácilmente,” dijo Vicente.

For an English translation of this profile over Vicente Castillo, contact Kervy Robles. Check out next week’s Bison for another Spanish article.

Green and Gold Gala will feature Archie Manning

“Just as he took advantage of the opportunities he had in his football career, our students do likewise in the way they study, build community and worship while at OBU,” she said.

By Allison Jarboe, Features Editor

NFL retiree Archie Manning will be featured at the Gala at 7:00 p.m. March 7. / Courtesy Photo

The OBU Green and Gold Gala is more than a fundraiser that makes a valuable education experience possible for so many, it is an opportunity to experience the traditions and values of OBU. In the past, this event has hosted public figures like Lou Holst and Benjamin Carson, and this year’s gala will feature retired NFL quarterback Archie Manning.

The event will be hosted in the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum at 7 p.m. March 7. Doors will open at 6 p.m. Tickets are now on sale for sponsorships or corporate tables, as well as individuals. and interested partied are encouraged to purchase as early as possible. Seating is determined from sponsorship level and purchase date. The price is $150 per ticket, with $75 going as a tax-deductible gift toward OBU scholarships. The cost of the ticket includes dinner.

Doors will open at 6 p.m. for a silent auction and live music.

“Our primary purpose in hosting the gala is to share the compelling story of Oklahoma Baptist University while raising crucial scholarship dollars for worthy students,” said Dr. Will Smallwood, senior vice president for advancement and university relations.

Crystal McKee, Director of Development for Annual Operations and Special Events, explained that many of the virtues that OBU stands for will be represented in Manning’s emphasis on the importance of faith and family and the value of hard work, among other values.

“Just as he took advantage of the opportunities he had in his football career, our students do likewise in the way they study, build community and worship while at OBU,” she said.

“This gala raises money for scholarships for students, to afford even more of these opportunities to more students in the future, so that they, too, may take advantage of those chances and excel in their calling.”

Individual tickets or tables may be purchased through OBU University Advancement at (405) 585-5427 or by emailing Crystal McKee.