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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

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Volume 31 • Issue 21

Lynchburg, Va.

Election impacts


Falwell encourages student to vote

Greg Leasure

Sophia Hahn

With Lynchburg City Council Elections approaching May 10, Liberty University President Jerry Falwell said he would like to encourage students to participate in the local political process. “It only takes a small turnout to make a difference during these offseason elections, 3,000 votes is all it takes to swing the election one way or the other,” Falwell said. During the 2008 presidential election, more than 4,000 students registered to vote and were responsible for a 70 percent voter turnout rate in Ward III, according to a 2008 Liberty Champion article. Because of this a precinct was opened on campus, Falwell explained. “The only reason that we have a precinct on campus is because 4,000 students not only registered to vote but came out and voted,” Falwell said. “We used to have to bus them to the polls.” According to Falwell, when students vote, they benefit from their effort in many ways. “(When) we used to go to build something here, (city council required us) to get a conditional use permit, …” Falwell said.

Courtney Russo | Liberty Champion

MAGIC — Alluvion’s production of Mary Poppins opened April 11 with a sold-out performance. See full story on B8.

See VOTE, A8

DIGI students represent Sony

New book launches

Towns writes study Bible

James Ebrahim

Emily Webster

Author and Liberty University Cofounder Elmer Towns has completed his newest work since the announcement of his sabbatical during the fall of 2013 – “The Prayer Bible,” which will be released April 27. According to the book’s press release, Towns co-wrote this prayer Bible with the late Dr. Roy Zuck. Towns translated each verse of the New Testament and the poetical books of the Bible into a prayer, and Zuck translated the remaining books of the Old Testament. “In addition to paraphrasing each Bible verse into a prayer, there is a prayer attached to every chapter and a footnote for every verse that applies it to prayer principles,” the press release states. Towns stated in an email that he believes “The Prayer Bible” will make publishing history.


Covering an expanse equivalent to the size of 35 football fields, more than 93,000 employees of major companies in the broadcast world from all 50 states attended the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Show in Las Vegas, among them a Liberty professor and two Liberty students. Sam Farnsworth and Jerusha O’Dell, communications majors at Liberty, represented Sony on the floor of the NAB show. “I helped inform people as they came to the Sony booth and asked questions about our products,” Farnsworth said. According to O’Dell, the students learned much from the experience. “We got thrown onto the floor with only a few hours to memorize as much information

about a product as possible,” O’Dell said. “So I learned all about what Sony has to offer as well as what everyone else is offering.” The NAB show gave students the opportunity to network with some of the big names in broadcasting. Among the companies attending the event were Gannett Broadcasting, BBC World News, ESPN and CNN, according to the NAB website. “I learned more about networking and just the emphasis on how important it is,” O’Dell said. “I knew it before, but it was reinforced from this trip.” Farnsworth emphasized the importance of interacting with fellow colleagues and business people. “Network, network, network,” Farnsworth said. “This business is all about who you know.”

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APRIL 15, 2014

Ukraine crisis impacts student’s family Tension involving Russia’s attempt to gain possession of Crimea evokes concern from relative in Lynchburg Sophia Hahn

Research Contributed by: Joseph Park

Sarah Babb, a Liberty University senior whose parents are working as missionaries in Ukraine, explained that when she heard about what was going on in the country, she immediately wanted to get in contact with her parents. “When I saw the news and the situation seemed to escalate, my initial reaction was to call my parents right away to figure out what was going on,” Babb said. “My parents had a difficult time trying to figure out what was really going on.” According to Babb, her parents did not leave their apartment for nearly three weeks. “They made sure that they were ready to leave to a nearby country if the U.S. Embassy told (them) to do so,” Babb said. “They were told to stay away from the areas in downtown Kiev where the demonstrations were happening. Other missionaries with little kids actually ended up leaving to a nearby country for an extended amount of time, so it was a time of big

confusion for all of us, as missionaries.” Babb explained that much of how the media is portraying the crisis in Ukraine is much worse than it actually is. “Most of what I hear on the news seems like it is all coming from a Russian propaganda,” she said. “The country is not as divided to the extreme as the mainstream media portrays it to be, and only a small portion of the government is pro-Russia — most Ukrainian people do not want anything to do with Russia.” According to Babb, patriotic Ukrainians are being depicted as people who do not care for their country’s wellbeing. “Looking at it from a historical perspective, since Ukraine went away from the Soviet Union in the early 1990s—they became a very prosperous, nationalistic country,” Babb said. “Ukrainians are very patriotic to their country, and what the media seems to portray isn’t an accurate representation of what is actually happening in Ukraine.” Because those who are pro-Russia are trying to seize control of Ukraine, Babb explained she thinks the United States should help Ukraine remain their own country. “I think that for any country to have their freedom taken away like Ukraine, the U.S. and the United Nations has the

Breann Black | Liberty Champion

CONFLICT — A dispute over Crimea has attracted the attention of world leaders. right to press on harder on Russia, even by the means of military intervention, to make sure that things like this do not happen again,” she said. Babb encouraged people to pray for peace and discernment, especially for the missionaries working in Ukraine. “As everything about this crisis is still up in the air, we would appreciate your prayers for peace for the country

and for discernment for my family and other missionary families as they figure out what is going to happen next,” Babb said. HAHN is the news editor. PARK is a news reporter.

TOWNS continued from A1 “There have been all types of translations and paraphrases of the Bible, but never has anyone attempted to turn every verse in the Bible into a prayer and then reinforce the verses with footnotes explaining the various principles and methods of prayer,” Towns said. This prayer Bible will allow readers to pray the words of scripture as they read, the press release states. “My prayer is that this Bible will revolutionize the life of Christians who read the scriptures,” Towns said. “They no longer will just read the Bible, but they will talk to God as they read the scriptures. And when believers pray scripturally, obviously they will pray better.” In advance of its release Sept. 16, 2014, the book will be promoted with various things, such as a DVD featuring some of America’s leading evangelical leaders read aloud excerpts from the book, radio interviews with Towns and an opportunity to receive a personalized, autographed copy of “The Prayer Bible.” According to the press release, those interested can download free samples of “The Prayer Bible” through and “change your spiritual life and your church.” WEBSTER is a copy editor.

Danae Samms | Liberty Champion

TECHNIQUE — Members of the Cyber Defense Club put their knowledge to the test and succeeded in the regional finals.

Cyber club places second

10 Books by Towns

Students implement computer safety techniques to succeed in regional finals

1. Daniel Fast for Spiritual Breakthrough

Zachary Pinkston

2. The Ultimate Guide to the Names of God 3. Bible Answers for Almost All Your Questions 4. Fasting with the Lord’s Prayer 5. How to Pray when You Don’t Know What to Say 6. My Angel Named Herman 7. The Beginners Guide to Fasting 8. 365 Ways to Know God 9. Praying the 23rd Psalm 10. Walking with Giants: An Extraordinary Journey of an Ordinary Man

Liberty University’s Cyber Defense Club placed second in the Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition at Johns Hopkins University March 28 - 29. After placing top eight at the virtual qualifier for the competition, which was done remotely from Liberty’s campus, the Cyber Defense Club, which teaches students computer security techniques, was invited to Johns Hopkins for the regional finals. Dr. Mark Shaneck, associate professor of computer science at Liberty, led the Cy-

ber Defense Club and was with them at Johns Hopkins for the competition. “(The virtual qualifier was) … a threehour competition, a scaled down version,” Shaneck said. “We were in the top eight, and we got to progress to the next level, which was the regional finals.” According to Shaneck, this was the Cyber Defense Club’s first appearance in the regional finals, and at the end of the weekend, they had won second place. “The scenario this year was the cyber blizzard,” Shaneck said. “It was the idea of a massive snowstorm in

Maryland, and they weren’t prepared for it, so it’s disaster management time.” Shaneck explained that the competition incorporated professionals from the military and other software companies trying to hack into the students’ systems. The goal was to get the software back up and running during this blizzard, all the while blocking out the hackers who were trying to force their way past the computer security. “It was pretty intense,” Shaneck said. “They were going nonstop from 9 (a.m.) to 5 (p.m.).” According to Sha-

neck, Liberty’s team captain, Hannah Kirse, was really challenged in this competition but held strong throughout, especially when she was given a mock interview by the “supervisor.” “The hackers had destroyed the machine she was going to use to type up the report, so she hand-wrote the report in a notebook,” Shaneck said. “She brought it in, and the guy tore it up. He was really hard on her, but she handled herself so well that she actually received the highest points in that area. So out of all the team interviews, we got the highest amount of points in that round.” Shaneck said Tow-

son University took first place, and Radford University came in third. The Cyber Defense Club is a club on campus that is open to all students. Shaneck said any student looking to get involved with the team or get more information about the events they take part in should email or find the club on Facebook at PINKSTON is a news reporter.



An error by the Champion staff forced portions of last week’s “From the Desk” to be omitted. The entire story can be viewed online at under the “Opinion” section of the Arpil 8 edition.


Liberty Champion/A3

APRIL 15, 2014

Club promotes autism awareness Autism Speaks U holds events to encourage students to support and reach out to children with special needs Tiffany Samuels

In honor of Autism Awareness Month in April, Liberty’s Autism Speaks U is hosting several events in order to raise awareness about autism among students and Lynchburg residents. The month kicked off April 2 on the steps of DeMoss Hall for World Autism Awareness Day. There, Autism Speaks U celebrated Light it Up Blue, a global initiative that raises awareness about autism. At the event, students were handed blue cotton candy and information on autism. Emily Abel, president of the Liberty chapter of Autism Speaks U, said the event educated students. “Our main goal is to advocate on behalf of those who have autism and those who have children with autism,” Abel said. “We also work with those associated with autism.” According to Abel, the Liberty chapter began two years ago. An estimated 150 members, mainly from education and psychology departments, make up the organization. She said members as well as volunteers are able to help out with events around campus. “We recently had a bake sale at

NAB continued from A1 Dr. Carey Martin, Digital Media & Communication Arts professor at Liberty, also attended the event, but not to represent Sony. Martin spoke for the Broadcast Education Association, an organization he has been a part of since 1997. Martin spoke in two panels, one being the importance of content versus technology in production instruction. “I played devil’s advocate,

Dale Carty II | Liberty Champion

RACE — Coleman’s Run raises funds for autism research. a movie night hosted by Student Activities,” Abel said. “We make opportunities available to spread the word about our organization and autism to the students.” In addition to the events on Autism Awareness Day, students were able to participate in the Coleman’s Run 5k race held Saturday, April 2. The race, according to the Coleman’s Run 5k website, raises autism awareness as well as funds for autism research. because this was set up by our writing interest group, and I said technology is always more important,” Martin said. “As a writer myself, I was taking that more as an intellectual position, not necessarily what I am emotionally connected to.” The other panel Martin participated in discussed civility and violence in the classroom. When Martin was not participating in the panels, he had the opportunity to visit other panels and take part in the NAB display floor.

Photo Provided

ADVOCACY — Students kicked off Autism Awareness Month with a “Light It Up Blue” event. Additionally, the organization seeks to reach out to families around Lynchburg. According to Abel, the organization has recently established “Parent Date Nights” for people who have children with autism. These parents are able to leave their children in the care of the Autism Speaks U members on campus while they go out and enjoy a date night. “I have had parents who have told me that they have not

been out in 10 years since we started this,” Abel said. “It is awesome to hear how the organization is playing a part in the community.” According to Abel, the chapter often sets up tables at grocery stores and events around Lynchburg in order to spread the word about autism. Throughout the month, the organization will host more events and fundraisers, according to

Abel. Meetings are hosted and events are posted and updated frequently on Liberty’s Autism Speaks U Facebook page.

“(The convention) is crammed with technology,” Martin said. “I confess I only got to see a small part of that, but I got to see a good part.” Like O’Dell and Farnsworth, Martin had the opportunity to network. “As with any convention, there is a lot of informal networking where you catch up with old friends and make new ones, and that was very fruitful this year,” Martin said. Martin even reconnected with

one of his students whom he first met when he was a graduate assistant at Florida State University. “It was very gratifying to me,” Martin said. “I am very grateful to Liberty University that they support (us) faculty in being part of such a great conference and a great organization.” Farnsworth said anyone interested in the broadcasting field should attend the event. “When I say that everyone in this business is there, literally ev-

eryone in this business is there,” Farnsworth said. “If they are in the media or technology field, we met them.” For more information about Liberty’s School of Communication & Creative Arts, visit communications/.

SAMUELS is a news reporter.

EBRAHIM is a news reporter.

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APRIL 15, 2014

Afghanistan: a victory for the US, women

The recent presidential election in the Middle East may be a sign that the region is making increased progress Tré Goins-Phillips

I saw the headlines, and it was as if I was reading a fantasy, something that could not be true—under any circumstances. As I have Googled information about the Afghani election, I have been met with headlines calling the day at the polls a “victory,” “success,” “shock” and, the most surprising of all, “relatively peaceful.” The presidential election, held April 5, was a grandiose display of patriotism. This second national vote displayed an unequivocal desire to see the nation’s seemingly innumerable woes resolved. Among all of the victories, the United States and Afghani women were big winners. The power and presence of the Taliban seem to have diminished, a topic many speculate for different reasons. According to Michael Kugelman of the Huffington Post, it is because the Taliban is worried about its image and wants to have a better standing with the coming administration as a political entity. Others have said it is because of the United States’ “War on Terror” that has weakened the power of the Taliban. In either case, this is a time of great opportunity for the West and for women. America’s engagement in Afghanistan has produced great

successes. According to the U.S. embassy in Kabul, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), in collaboration with the Afghan government, has built more than 680 schools since 2002, enrolling nearly 7 million students. Of those students, 37 percent of them are female. This stands in stark contrast to 2001 when the Taliban still ruled the nation, and less than one million students were in school—and not a single one of them was a girl. For women, this was a major shift from the heavily patriarchal Afghanistan. In an era where the rules of the Taliban seem to be dwindling, three women threw their name in for vice president. “Of course, to be in politics as a woman is a risky task,” Dr. Habiba Sarabi, first female governor in Afghanistan’s Bamiyan province and vice presidential candidate, said in The Independent, a British news source. “But we have to take the risk, otherwise we cannot achieve our goal. We cannot expect everything can be soft or everything can be clear on our way.” Ashraf Ghani, the frontrunner for president, has broken an age-old tradition by including his wife, Rula Ghani, in his campaign. Rula Ghani claims to be a Lebanese Christian and has been called the “most Westernized woman among the Kabuli elite,” by several Afghani news sources.

Google Images

DEVELOPMENT — An Afghanistani voter shows his inked finger to show that he has voted. Educated in the United States, Ashraf Ghani is the former finance minister of Afghanistan and the former chancellor of Kabul University. He is known as a scholar of political science and anthropology, and he worked at World Bank on international development assistance. Ashraf Ghani has agreed to sign President Barack Obama’s agreement to keep foreign troops in the country after their scheduled withdrawal date at the end of 2014. The United States’ continued presence is critical for the continued advancement of freedom.

Afghanistan’s women know that, and they took their civic duty seriously. According to the Independent Election Commission of Afghanistan, 35 percent of the 16 million voters were women. With the coming of a new regime, Afghanistan and the U.S.—along with the rest of the Western leaders—have the opportunity to forge strong relationships and continue moving into greater freedom. The final results of the election are not expected for a couple weeks, and there are bound to be many bumps along the way. The

Taliban is not gone, and radical Islam is still around. However, there has been great progress. All in all, I am proud of our armed forces, hopeful for the Afghani people and optimistic that long-term efforts to build strong alliances in the Middle East will be launched in this great window of opportunity. GOINS-PHILLIPS is an opinion writer.

Supreme Court drops donation limits The Supreme Court decides to no longer limit the amount of money one can donate to a political campaign Tyler Beaston

In a 5-4 decision Wednesday, April 2, the U.S. Supreme Court removed the limit on political campaign donations from individuals to federal candidates, according to a Washington Post article by Robert Barnes. The justices of the Supreme Court ruled to remove the cap because it conflicts with a person’s First Amendment right to free speech. Obviously, the issue hardly relates to speaking, but more generally to freely supporting candidates. I side with Chief Justice John Roberts, Jr. and the other four justices who opposed the limit on donations, solely because I believe people should be allowed to do with their money whatever they like, short of illegal dealings. The Washington Post article quotes Roberts, who said, “There is no right more basic in our democracy than the right to participate in electing our political leaders.” In a time marked by a significant growth of government regulation in the economy and high taxes, this recent decision up-

by Greg Leasure It has been 39 days since Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 disappeared. In that amount of time, relatives of the 239 people on board have been waiting to be told what became of their loved ones, whether or not they will ever see them LEASURE again.

Could it not be that each Supreme Court justice voted not based on their political persuasions but on their convictions?

holds individuals’ rights to use their property at their own discretion — a refreshing change of policy in my opinion. The opposing justices and their supporters see the removal of the donation cap as an opportunity for some of the country’s wealthiest people to unfairly contribute to candidates. Opponents of the decision fear that people giving money will find loopholes to give even more funds, according to a CNN article by Bill Mears and Tom Cohen. Additionally, a relationship between money givers and receivers could appear to be based on favors. For example, someone might give money to a candidate in return for a political benefit. The concern is legitimate enough, and these under-the-table transactions cannot

The search for Flight 370 has been relentless, and multiple countries, including the United States, have joined in the search. But as time passes, bringing more questions than answers, hope has continued to dwindle. Initially, the search covered a massive area, spanning much of the Eastern Hemisphere. Next, there were reports of debris floating in the ocean, but still, nothing was found. Eventually, the search strategy shifted to efforts to track pings from the missing plane’s black box that might lead to its location before its 30-day

— TYLER BEASTON be condoned. But what opponents must recognize is that devious dealings will always transpire and loopholes will always be exploited — it is in human nature to do so. The existence of a donation cap could never change a person’s unethical inclinations. There is still a limit on the amount that donors can give to individual candidates, so dissenters have little reason to complain. Donors can give no more than $5,200 to one candidate within a two-year election cycle, Mears and Cohen wrote. In keeping with governmental precedents, this court case has been politicized like everything else that comes out of D.C. It has become positively tiresome, the talk of partisanship that supposedly influenced the justices’ decision. Of course,

battery life failed. Now, according to CNN, Australian Chief Search Coordinator Angus Houston announced Monday they will abandon the search for pings and begin using a Bluefin-21 unmanned, underwater vehicle equipped with side-scan sonar technology to search the bottom of the ocean for the lost plane. The situation is enough to make anyone wonder — how can something as big and normally so welltracked as an airplane be lost? The search, now that it has shifted to the ocean floor, is almost reminiscent of the search for the Titanic.

it was the Republicans or Conservatives who supported the limit’s removal. And of course, the Democrats and Liberals stood for its continuation. “It again reveals a court deeply divided between Liberals trying to preserve campaign finance restrictions they say are essential to ensuring democracy is not distorted by the wealth of the powerful, and Conservatives who think the First Amendment trumps efforts by the government to control who pays for elections and how much they spend,” Barnes wrote. Could it not be that each Supreme Court justice voted based not on their political persuasions but on their convictions? I disagree with limiting individual donations in spite of my conservative tendencies, not because of them. Any mention of political parties in relation to this case is really quite irrelevant. BEASTON is an opinion writer.

“This will be a slow and painstaking process,” Houston said of the Bluefin-21’s mission. After all, the vehicle is only capable of searching approximately 15 square miles every 24 hours. Despite the slow pace, the search must continue, not only for the sake of the people who are waiting to find answers about what happened to their loved ones, but also to find any information about how to prevent something like this from happening again.


APRIL 15, 2014

Liberty Champion/A5

70th Anniversary

Salute to Normandy veterans FYI 160,000 Allied troops invaded the beaches of Normandy in the summer of 1944.

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INVASION — American soldiers stormed the shorelines of Normandy Tuesday, June 6, 1944, ready to bring an end to Adolf Hitler’s reign of terror.

Remembering D-Day sparks national pride

70th anniversary of Normandy invasion inspires Americans to “accept nothing less than full victory” Emily Webster

Imagine staring death in the face. Imagine knowing that you are about to die in a foreign country, and the majority of people for whom you are dying do not even know your name. Now imagine having the courage to continue on in the face of this almost certain death. The men who fought gallantly during the D-Day Invasion did not have to imagine these things. They lived them June 6, 1944. As 160,000 Allied troops approached the French coastline, there was no time for secondguessing and no time for turning back in fear. There was only moving forward. It takes more than courage to do something like that. It takes the belief that what you are fighting for is of greater worth than your life. These soldiers clearly believed that protecting this country and the world carried more importance than their own lives. They were able to put aside comfort and familiarity for the future of millions of people.

“We’ve got to remember the folks who did it and those who still do it—the 1 percent who go into harm’s way for the benefit of the (other) 99 percent,” Dave De Soucy, a retired officer who served in combat during the Vietnam War, said in an article on the United States Army’s website. This day in United States history is arguably one of the most important days in our past. This was the beginning of the end for Adolf Hitler. It was a huge step in ending World War II. But it was also the end of thousands of soldiers. Their last act on this earth was fighting for freedom for not only their families, but also for strangers. How should this knowledge affect the way we as Americans live our lives? Should knowing that men who fought nearly 70 years ago to ensure that we can live in freedom influence us in any way? If this knowledge affects anything, it should at least affect our pride in this country and in our soldiers. We should admire the fact that these men took enough pride in their country to give up their lives for its safety and for





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Gabriella Fuller



Ashley McAlpin

Derrick Battle

Nicole Steenburgh FEATURE EDITOR


Emily Webster COPY EDITOR


Courtney Russo



Shelanne Jennings

Tom Foote

Leah Stauffer






the safety of those living in it. “It is important that (people) recognize that the freedoms they enjoy today are a result of the sacrifice of millions of people from all over the world that ensured their liberty,” Joseph W. Westphal, under secretary of the Army, said in another source on the United States Army’s website. “No greater act of bravery was ever carried out than that of millions of citizen soldiers, and civilians, who faced and defeated tyranny and rebuilt this country and the world.” This day should be an inspiration to those of us who may never stare death in the face. It should inspire us to be strong and stand up to whatever our personal Normandy beaches are. And, just as Dwight D. Eisenhower said, we should “accept nothing less than full victory” when we storm these beaches. WEBSTER is a copy editor.

The Champion encourages community members to submit letters to the editor on any subject. Letters should not exceed 400 words and must be typed and signed. The deadline is 5 p.m. Friday. Letters and columns that appear are the opinion of the author solely, not the Champion editorial board or Liberty University. All material submitted becomes property of the Champion. The Champion reserves the right to accept, reject or edit any letter received—according to the Champion stylebook, taste and the Liberty University mission statement.




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APRIL 15, 2014

Legend’s daughter ‘Kelly tough’

Freshman Erin Kelly, daughter of NFL Hall-of-Famer Jim Kelly, relies on faith as family faces medical troubles Greg Leasure

For the past four weekends, Liberty University freshman Erin Kelly has boarded a plane bound for New York City. Each Thursday night, she packs some homework and anything else she might need for the trip and returns three days later, ready for class Monday morning. These weekend getaways are not for sightseeing or exploring the big city, though. Instead, Erin spends her weekends with her parents, visiting her father in the hospital. To Erin, the man she visits every weekend is just “dad.” But to Buffalo Bills football fans, he is Jim Kelly, the Hall-of-Fame quarterback who led his franchise to four straight Super Bowl appearances. Jim was first diagnosed with cancer in June of 2013. According to an article by Sports Illustrated writer Peter King, doctors soon decided to remove a cancerous portion of his jaw, and he returned to life as usual until learning in early March that his cancer had returned, this time in the form of many small tumors located near a nerve in the back of his head, which are threatening to move to his brain. Erin’s father, who used to take punishing hits from professional linebackers and defensive linemen for a living, is faced with an uphill battle, this time against his own body. He still has a long road of treatments ahead, but he and the rest of the Kelly clan holds a positive outlook. There has been no shortage of support for the Kelly family since Jim’s original diagnosis in June of 2013. The hashtag “PrayersForJK” took social media by storm after both of his diagnoses, especially among Bills fans and NFL followers. Now, the hashtag has become both a rallying cry for the Kelly family and a reminder of the God in whom they believe wholeheartedly. “First round of chemo. DONE,” Jim’s wife, Jill Kelly, tweeted Tuesday, April 8. “Be glorified even in this Lord! #PrayersForJK.” One picture in particular that Erin posted to her Instagram, Twitter and Facebook accounts showed her how much people were interested in her family’s well-being. The scene was simple, yet profound. Erin, sporting a grey T-shirt with a large Bills logo, lay next to her dad in his hospital bed as they watched a Syracuse University basketball game on television. In just a few days, the picture began popping up next to countless articles about her dad, a poignant reminder of the human side of professional athletes. Erin’s love for sports always connected her with her father. It was only natural, considering his line of work. Whether it was swimming, softball or basketball, he was almost always on the sideline. “I’d be on the court playing, and I could hear him from the sideline saying, ‘Box out!’ or ‘Post up!’” Erin said. “So he is the best coach I could have ever asked for.” After every hard foul drawn or poor decision made, Jim was always in his daughter’s ear with a word of encouragement. “You have to be Kelly tough,” he would always say. According to Erin, the Kelly tough motto comes from her father’s childhood. What attribute other than toughness could have come from Jim growing up with five brothers? Even though the Kelly tough tradition began long ago, the real Kelly toughness had not begun until Hunter James Kelly came along. Born a few months before Erin’s second birthday, Hunter was diagnosed with


Krabbe Disease only months after birth. According to the Mayo Clinic, Krabbe Disease is a type of leukodystrophy, a rare genetic disease that affects the central nervous system. There is no cure. Krabbe Disease manifests itself in many ways, but for Hunter, breathing was difficult. Vision deteriorated, and physical therapy was an everyday necessity. Not long after his diagnosis, the Kelly family opened their home to a team of caregivers, which also became known as Team Hunter, in order to help provide the round-the-clock care he needed. Even though Hunter could not speak, the family taught Hunter to communicate in other ways, such as blinking once for “Yes” and three times for “I love you.” Jill would go on to share the story of “Hunterboy,” as the family affectionately called him, in a New York Times bestselling book titled “Without a Word.” “I remember everything,” Erin said. “I remember just hanging out with him and playing with him and just being his big sister. I also remember times just watching him struggle, because he struggled every single day of his life.” Jill’s book includes numerous entries from her personal journal and memories from Hunter’s life. Though the Kelly family was often stressed almost to its breaking point, nearly at the expense of Jim and Jill’s marriage, their intense love and care for Hunter never faltered. As Jill and the rest of the family coped with the knowledge that Hunter would someday die from Krabbe Disease, Jill found herself relying on God to get through the heartache, documenting her conversations with both God and Hunter in her journals. “Though he struggled, he brought so much joy to our family,” Erin said. “This disease was killing him, yet he was bringing so much life to our family.” Although Hunter finally succumbed to his disease Aug. 5, 2005, at eight years old, the memory of him lives on through Hunter’s Hope, an organization created by Jim and Jill to give hope to other families affected by the disease. The organization not only seeks to provide a support system for families, but it also works to combat the disease through newborn screening and researching for a cure. Erin was only 10 years old when her brother died, but his battle with Krabbe Disease led her to major in exercise science at Liberty, with the goal of pursuing a career in physical therapy for people with incurable diseases like Hunter’s. “We watched him fight every single day of his life, and he is the strongest person I’ve ever met,” Erin said. “I can say that without a doubt. He is the strongest person I’ve ever met. So now, I look at my dad, and he’s the second strongest person I’ve ever met.” That signature Kelly toughness remains

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BILLS PRIDE — Erin Kelly watches television with her father, Bills QB Jim Kelly. engrained in each one of the family members, but things have been especially difficult for Erin and her sister Camryn, currently living with her grandparents as a high school student in Western New York. For the time being, Jim’s medical needs require both he and Jill to live in New York City full-time. According to Erin, she has been able to deal with the distance by leaning on a support system of friends at Liberty that might not have come together if she had chosen another school. One of those close friends is someone she describes as a “second mother,” Liberty Athletics Sport Nutrition Specialist and Strength and Conditioning Coach Donna Barber. Donna struck up an immediate friendship with the Kelly family, Jill in particular, in the fall of 2013. Gayle Gill, wife of Liberty Flames Head Football Coach Turner Gill, invited the visiting Kelly family to watch a football game in a suite with Donna’s husband, Athletic Director Jeff Barber. Donna said the connection between she and Jill was almost immediate. Half a year later, Donna and Jill talk multiple times a week, and Donna talks with Erin almost every day. Erin said caring people at Liberty have been a key to dealing with hard times, but Donna said faith has been paramount for both Erin and the rest of her family. “I don’t mean to simplify things, but I know it’s their faith,” Donna said of the Kelly’s source of strength. “God is so real, and they feel it every day.” Another example of Liberty’s support

for the Kelly family arose in early March of 2014. Erin and Jill were on a spring break trip to Israel organized by Liberty when they learned Jim’s cancer had returned. According to Erin, the group began to pray for her entire family, something that impressed both Erin and Liberty Senior Vice President for Communications Johnnie Moore, one of the leaders of the trip. “It was amazing to watch the team rally around (Erin and Jill) and even more amazing to watch how strong their individual faith was in spite of their personal crisis,” Moore said. “These folks love Jesus and believe and trust in him like few people I have seen.” Now that Jim has begun his treatments, the Kelly family anticipates rough going as the champion of Kelly toughness fights through chemotherapy and radiation treatments intended to diminish the size and number of tumors before surgery can become an option. But according to Erin, if the Kelly family can take away one positive from his situation, it is their increased ability to share their faith with others in response to the attention Jim has received. Yes, each member of the Kelly family still believes in the family motto. But each of them is quick to admit the real source of their Kelly toughness — a source that neither cancer, nor Krabbe disease can touch — is their faith in God. LEASURE is the editor-in-chief.

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APRIL 15, 2014

Liberty Champion/A7

Degree Completion Plans change Majors undergo revision to allow for students to have greater opportunities in classrooms and careers

Evelyn Hylton

After months of contemplation and strategizing, many departments within Liberty University have decided to alter their Degree Completion Plans (DCP) in an effort to accommodate the growing needs of the student body. According to Center of Academic Support and Advising Services Executive Director for Administration Dwayne Melton, the DCP changes offer students more options to complete general education requirements. A few of these changes will allow students to take program specific courses that meet the core competencies to fulfill general education requirements instead of adding to the total credit hours needed to complete their degree program. Melton encouraged freshmen and sophomores with questions to meet with their advisors, while juniors and seniors should meet with their faculty mentors or advisors. In addition to changes within the College of General Studies, various departments are planning to undergo a restructuring process that will better cater to the changing needs of Liberty students entering today’s work force. Although the majority of proposed changes remain unofficial, the School of Communication & Creative Arts (SCCA) has made significant progress in solidifying its new structure, according Digital Media & Communication Arts (DMCA) Chair Bruce Kirk. “We went from four DCPs, or what you might call concentrations, to now 10 concentrations, so we more than doubled the number of concentrations that we had before,” Kirk said. “As

Ana Campbell | Liberty Champion

TRANSITION — Incoming students will register under the new DCPs.

...(W)hat we realized was we felt like we could make our program more robust and more specific for students that have particular areas that they are trying to grow in. — BRUCE KIRK

we looked around the country at other universities, other benchmark schools, what we realized was we felt like we could make our program more robust and more specific for students that have particular areas that they are trying to grow in.” Kirk explained the old DCPs did not fully encompass or represent the jobs and opportunities that are out there. “Now, for example, if you look

at digital media, we have a performance concentration, which we did not have before, we have a video concentration, we have an audio concentration, we have a trans-media concentration and we have a social media and interactive (concentration),” Kirk said. According to Kirk, the new changes will primarily affect incoming students and underclassmen within the department who

have not yet begun their majorspecific courses. However, upper-level SCCA majors also have the option of switching from the old DCP to the new one. At any level, every SCCA student wishing to change concentrations will be paired with a faculty adviser who will aid the student in the transition from one concentration to the next. “If you’re a student in DMCA right now and you’re a junior or a senior … bring in your old DCP, bring in a copy of your new DCP that you’re thinking about moving to,” Kirk said. “We put them side by side, and we look at what you’ve completed on the old one, and we see how that impacts the new one. Then you can determine what route you want to take after you sat down with your adviser and looked over all your courses.” While departments like SCCA

are focused on expansion, others, such as the Department of English and Modern Languages (EML), for example, are focused on integration, according to EML Department Chair Dr. Matthew Towles. He said he plans to exchange its current DCP for a new one that condenses current courses into courses that are less specialized but more rounded and foundational in certain areas. “For the B.A. in English, we incorporated two beginner courses into the major,” Towles said. “(These) cornerstone courses provide students with a broad overview of literature itself.” Cornerstone courses, according to Towles, are the basic building blocks of the department’s new DCP, which were developed to provide students with a more rounded foundation in both reading and writing than that offered by the old DCP. Building off of the 200-level courses, Towles said, EML will introduce 300 and 400-level courses “to reflect the two skills English majors should have: reading and writing,” and ending with a “capstone” course to complete the degree with an integration of all skills learned from previous courses. Towles said that although many course titles and numbers will change for the fall 2014 semester, current English majors will still remain on the same DCP. Incoming students and underclassmen, however, will begin the newly-structured program beginning with the cornerstone courses. HYLTON is a news reporter.




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APRIL 15, 2014

Quiz Bowl ranks 20th at nationals

Team defeats six universities, scores 190 points against tournament champion Harvard in first trip to ICT Shae Leitz

Liberty University’s Quiz Bowl team ranked 20th in the national Intercollegiate Championship Tournament (ICT) March 29, according to Jim Nutter, Quiz Bowl coach. The tournament took place at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Rosemont, Ill., which is a suburb of Chicago. Liberty’s team took eight people, including their five players. According to Nutter, Liberty entered the tournament ranked 26th out of the 32 teams invited to nationals. The ranking was based on the 335 points per game (PPG) the team scored in the sectional tournament that was played at Virginia Tech in February. The rise to 20th in the national ranking was due to Liberty’s team garnering six wins at the nationals, which were against Truman State, Broward College, The University of Alabama, Valencia Col-

lege, Carleton College and Northeastern University, according to Nutter. Harvard’s team won the tournament, but Liberty scored 190 points against them in a loss. “This was our first trip to nationals, so I was really impressed with our six wins, especially the 315-195 win over the University of Alabama from the Southeastern Conference,” Nutter said. “These six wins at nationals increased our team win total to 39 for the season, which is an all-time record for the program.” According to Nutter, graduate student Catherine Hardee finished in 14th place out of 123 players and is the primary reason that the team made it to nationals this year. “It was a thrill to realize we had done so well at Nationals,” Hardee said. “This is my last year with the team, since I am graduating in May, and to go out on such a strong note is a real blessing. I’m so proud of all my teammates

VOTE continued from A1 “(The city) used it to put a lot of requirements on us by making us build highway ramps or tunnels. That was money we didn’t have back in those days, so it came out of tuition money and resulted in increased tuition for students. Now, because students registered to vote, we have the new institutional zoning rights. … And we only got those rights because students voted, and we could just as easily lose the rights again if our (students) stop voting.” Voters can influence City Council’s actions on matters such as meal taxes, lodging taxes, entertainment taxes and real estate taxes, Falwell said. At present, meals tax is 6.5 percent in the state plus 5.3 percent going to the city for a total of

and what we were able to accomplish.” Hardee said she joined the Quiz Bowl team in 2010 during her junior year of her undergraduate degree at Liberty and is currently working toward her master’s degree in history, which she will complete this semester. Even though the team has come across some difficulties, they have achieved a number of impressive accomplishments, Nutter explained. The team finished in second place with seven wins and one loss in the nineteam Big South Conference Tournament in January and fourth place with nine wins and four losses at the 14-team National Academic Quiz Tournaments (NAQT) Sectional Tournament in February. According to the NAQT website, Quiz Bowl questions range over the entire spectrum of a college curriculum such as literature, history, geography, government, the sciences, math, music, art, and religion

11.8 percent. Meals tax is an item that is often discussed as a means to add income to the city budget. Another added benefit from students being more involved in the local political process is the Wards Road pedestrian bridge. “In my opinion, the city paid for the bridge over Wards Road as a result of Liberty students registering to vote,” he said. Falwell used this as an example to show how important it is for Liberty students to vote. “If you vote, (City Council) pays attention to you, which is good for Liberty students,” he said. “It is just good citizenship. You are going to school here, and you are here nine months out of the year.”

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SUCCESS — With a 20th place finish, the Quiz Bowl team had its best season in school history. and may also include a der pressure, but the ré- Nutter said. certain amount of current sumé and graduate school For more information events, sports and popular application also benefit, about Liberty’s Quiz Bowl according to Nutter. culture. team, email Nutter at jh“(M)any of our Quiz or call There are a number of benefits Liberty’s Quiz Bowl alumni have gone 434-592-3303. Bowl team provides to on to attend medical members. Players not only schools, law schools and LEITZ is a news learn to think quickly un- other graduate schools,” reporter. The election day coincides with the last day of Liberty’s final exams, May 6. While many Liberty students will still be in town for exams or to participate in Commencement May 10, some students may have already left campus. According to the Lynchburg Registrar’s Office page at, students can vote in person for the City Council election as they normally would May 6. However, if students are planning to be out of town on the day of the election, they will not be left without recourse. Students who are already registered can participate in absentee voting by visiting the Lynchburg Registrar’s Office and filling out an absentee ballot application before the April 29 deadline. Once the application is turned in, they will be mailed

a ballot. Falwell explained that this is Liberty’s last shot to vote for at large City Council seats for the next four years. “I hope students will vote locally in support of their university and this city,” he said. “I would appreciate the favor as well because, when students get involved, it makes our job as university administrators a little easier.” LEASURE is the editor-in-chief. HAHN is the news editor.


APRIL 15, 2014


G-Webb 5

Liberty 3

W. Lacrosse

Coastal 7

Liberty 6

M. Tennis


Red 52

White 70


W. Tennis

Liberty Campbell 2 5

Liberty Richmond 6 1

National recognition

a taste of fall

Dot Richardson to coach Central Virginia All-Stars Ryley Rush

Courtney Russo | Liberty Champion

TAG —Liberty’s football team gave fans a sample of next season in its first public scrimmage.

Offense triumphs Defense falls short in football’s annual red vs. white spring game Alex Tichenor

Fans took in their first glimpse of 2014 Liberty football at the annual spring game Saturday, April 12, in which the white team prevailed over the red squad 70-52. Yes, 70-52. The final score was a result of an unorthodox scoring system rather than a Vesuvius-like offensive eruption. Points were awarded for various tasks on both sides of the ball. For example, five completed passes in a row gave five points to the offense. There were 34 different ways to earn points for the offense and the defense in addition to the standard ways of scoring. Teams were divided very simply — white was offense and red was defense. The defense was given a few more ways to score under the system to make up for not being able to score touchdowns or field goals. The game was also split into two halves instead of

four quarters, with a 25-play limit per half. There was also another wrinkle the coaching staff threw into the game — no tackling allowed. Offensive players were ruled down immediately after getting touched. Head Coach Turner Gill said preventing injuries was the biggest reason for the rule change. “(Playing one-hand touch) was different,” wide receiver Darrin Peterson said. “I didn’t like it at all, but you don’t want to get people hurt right now. For me, it was frustrating, because when you got touched, they said you were down. But a touch doesn’t mean you’re down in football.” Running the ball was made nearly impossible with the tackling rules, so the passing game was on display for most of the afternoon. The offense got off to a sluggish start, missing both deep throws and routine check-downs early in the game. It was not until the first drive of the second half

Courtney Russo | Liberty Champion

SWAT— Players fight for the ball in the spring game. that the white team found the end zone, with quarterback Josh


Liberty’s Lady Flames softball Head Coach Dot Richardson has represented USA softball as a player often, from her first time making a national team at 17 years old to five world championships and the Pan American Games, but she has never gone against her country — until this summer. When USA softball sets out on a trial tour this summer to finalize its World Championships roster, the team’s first stop will be Lynchburg, Va., Richardson will be coaching against them in a showcase game June 13 at City Stadium. “I get to select 15 players for what they’re calling the Central Virginia All-Stars,” Richardson said. “So what I did was look at colleges within Virginia, though some of the players may not be (from in-state).” Due to NCAA regulations, Richardson cannot select any current Liberty University softball players for the team to face the United States. Graduates, on the other hand, are fair game. The five graduating seniors on this season’s Flames softball squad — pitcher Alyssa DiMartino, outfielder Katie Zavodny, utility player Marybeth Sciolino and infielders Grace Nordan and Sammi Shivock — will have spots on Richardson’s roster, while assistant coach Paige Cassady is looking to pitch and graduate assistant Morgan Price hopes to catch for the team. Richardson mentioned additional player possibilities from Longwood University and Radford University and expected the roster to be finalized within the next month. The national team will also be practicing on Liberty’s campus from June 9-12, either at the Lady Flames new stadium or on their current field. “It’s extremely exciting, because … I feel that Lynchburg is starting to get some recognition and some commitment in the sport of softball,” Richardson said. “There’s discussion about building additional ball fields in the community, and I think that Liberty is interested in being a part of that in some way.” Richardson’s own experience with USA softball in itself is a major factor in Lynchburg’s growth into a softball city, and this summer, she will get a chance to further it from a whole new angle. RUSH is a sports reporter.

Flame Train rolls over Lancers Ryan Seiz stays hot, going 7-12 with two home runs in Liberty’s three-game sweep against Longwood Greg Leasure Derrick Battle

Courtney Russo | Liberty Champion

SPRINT — Nick Lacik runs to first base.


Baseball vs. James Madison April 15 @ 6 p.m.

Liberty 10, Longwood 4 The Liberty Flames (29-8, 14-1 Big South) baseball team found itself in unfamiliar territory in a series-opening matchup with the Longwood University Lancers (14-23, 4-11 Big South) Friday, April 11. After the Flames jumped out to a 1-0 lead on a first-inning Ryan Seiz single, the Lancers responded just as quickly in the bottom half of the inning. First came a leadoff double.

Softball vs. Winthrop April 18 @ 2 p.m.

A sharp single followed. A double play turned by second-baseman Seiz and shortstop Dalton Britt killed the developing rally, but the damage was done. Only three hitters into the game, the Flames streak of 60 and 2/3 straight scoreless innings against Big South opponents was snapped, the game tied at one. Flames senior starting pitcher Trey Lambert hoped to settle down in the second inning, but a leadoff triple soon found the alley in right field. Two batters later, an RBI groundout from Longwood’s Marc McCafferty made it a 2-1 Lancers lead.

Softball vs. Winthrop

April 18 @ 4 p.m.

“We might have come in today too relaxed and just kind of got comfortable,” Lambert said. “Things weren’t as easy today, so you just have to grind and have faith in the guys to put crooked numbers up on the scoreboard.” As the early innings wore on, both teams continued to scratch out runs one at a time. Flames leadoff hitter Nick Lacik drew a walk to begin the third inning and later scored on a fielder’s choice ground ball to third hit by Becker Sankey, but Danny Grauer later left the

M. Lacrosse vs. Virginia Tech April 18 @ 8 p.m.


Softball vs. Winthrop April 19 @ 1 p.m.


APRIL 15, 2014

Liberty Champion/B2

Pursuing dreams professionally

Avery Warley continues her basketball career at the highest level, whether it is playing in the WNBA or overseas Tom Foote

Not many women have an opportunity to play professionally in the WNBA. In fact, only a few more than 100 players have the opportunity to suit up for one of the 12 teams in the league. Liberty University’s all-time leading rebounder and 2011 Big South Defensive Player of the Year Avery Warley, is one of those players who made the transition from college to the WNBA. Warley credited her years playing at Liberty as the main reason she has been able to pursue her dream. “Liberty is one of the reasons I’m able to make it mentally and physically as a professional athlete,” Warley said. “… Playing at Liberty, the three major things, (among others), it taught me (were) a tremendous amount of patience, discipline and hard work.” After graduating from Liberty in the spring of 2012, Warley went undrafted but signed with the Phoenix Mercury in 2012, describing the experience as surreal. “I don’t even believe there is a word that can best describe the way I was feeling that day,” Warley said. “I am very blessed. It was nothing but God, and I knew that. Here I am as an undrafted player from Liberty University, taking the spots of

ROLLS continued from B1 bases loaded and the game tied at two. In the bottom of the third, Lambert surrendered two straight singles to Longwood’s Matt Dickason and Kyri Washington. The Lancers took a one-run lead on an RBI double to center by Brandon Delk, but the Flames again minimized the damage on the play by throwing out Washington at the plate by 10 feet. In a game that featured almost exclusively one-run innings — the teams combined for nine of them — the Flames finally broke the game open in the fifth inning, taking advantage of sloppy play by Longwood to send 10 hitters to the plate and score five runs. Seiz began the rally with one out

drafted players. The feeling was breathtaking.” According to Warley her twoyear stint in the WNBA has been a bit of a rollercoaster ride so far, as she was bounced between four different teams before eventually landing with the Chicago Sky, the team she will be with when the season restarts in May. “I learned that when it’s all said and done, God is in control,” Warley said. “God has the final say. It reassured me (as I moved between different teams). … And although life can be unfair at times, through all of those teams, God has still blessed me. I finally found the (team) where I belong.” During the offseason, Warley brought her game overseas to Israel and Turkey, where she says many WNBA players decide to go in the offseason due to better pay and the WNBA’s short regular season. Warley admits that adjusting to life outside the United States has not always been simple, but she has embraced playing in Israel and Turkey. “Playing in these countries has taught me a lot, but most importantly, (it’s taught me to) be grateful for the little things — the things you sometimes can get caught taking for granted, such as always having hot water (and) seeing and talking to your family and friends,” Warley said. Despite being overseas, Warley

explained how instrumental her friends and former teammates from Liberty have been in her life. “When you play for Liberty, the girls become a sisterhood, not just teammates,” Warley said. “I have amazing people that I still visit and who mean so much to me that are still at Liberty.” Along with the support from friends and teammates, Warley reminisced on how Liberty Head Coach Carey Green has influenced her career as both a basketball player and as a well-rounded person. “(Green) has helped groom me as a player and as a person,” Warley said. “One of the reasons I came to Liberty was because he cared more about me as a person. … He was my biggest encourager and my biggest critic. He did what he thought was best for me every time. I might not have (always) liked it, but I respect him and will forever be thankful for that.” Wherever she ends up, whether on the court or off, Warley said she is going to continue letting God be in control of her life. “God has the wheel, (and I’m) just sitting back and enjoying the ride,” Warley said. “… My journey called life is different from every one else. God has a plan for me no matter what it looks like.”

by taking a fastball to the ribs, and a barrage of singles, walks, stolen bases and errors kept the line moving to create a 7-3 Liberty lead. “We knew that the offense needed to come through today,” Seiz said. “… It’s nice to know that our offense is capable of doing that when our pitching isn’t there necessarily.” Lambert, who owned a 23-inning scoreless streak of his own before Friday’s start, had more success his second time through the Lancers lineup, relying heavily on his fastball. He finished the day with seven strikeouts and eight hits allowed in seven innings of work, moving his record to 8-1. “It was not an easy day on the mound,” Lambert said. “There was a lot of difference from the last two weeks. It’s unbeliev-

able to see the guys come out week after week and just pound the ball.” Solo home runs by Sankey and Seiz added to the Flames lead in the later innings, and a ninthinning insurance run made it a 10-4 Flames win. “They swung the bat very well, especially the top-of-the-order guys,” Flames Head Coach Jim Toman said. “Lambert didn’t have his greatest stuff. He had to battle through it just to get through seven innings. And obviously he didn’t have his best stuff, but you give credit to Longwood’s hitters.” Friday night’s win marked the first of five straight games for Liberty, a stretch that will test the team’s pitching depth, according to Toman. With usual Saturday starter Carson Herndon unavailable due to injury, the Flames looked to lefthander Blake Fulghum to face the Lancers Saturday.

Courtney Russo | Liberty Champion

BIG HITS — Andrew Yacyk has 12 RBIs this season.

FOOTE is the asst. sports editor.

Liberty 8, Longwood 5 Liberty continued its dominance in Big South play, improving to 13-1 in conference and collecting an 8-5 victory against Longwood Saturday, April 12. Fulghum gained his third win of the season and pitched his first complete game of his Liberty career, striking out three giving up 11 hits and four earned runs, while walking four. In the top of the first, the Flames jumped out to a 2-0 lead. After Lacik singled and right fielder Will Shepherd grounded

Ruth Bibby | Liberty Champion

SKY’S THE LIMIT — Avery Warley will suit up for the Chicago Sky during the 2014 WNBA season. out, advancing Lacik to second, Seiz singled to right field to drive Lacik home. Due to a Longwood error, Seiz safely got to third and was brought home on a Sankey sacrifice fly. The Lancers answered with a run in the first inning and took a 5-3 lead in the bottom of the fourth on Dickason’s RBI double and Delk’s RBI single to center field. In the next inning, Liberty came within one when Seiz hit his second solo home run of the series for his ninth of the season. After a shaky four innings, Fulghum settled down and held the Lancers to one hit for the rest of the game. Liberty regained its lead in the top of the sixth, pushing three runs across home plate. With two outs, Longwood pitcher Brandon Vick unraveled and walked two consecutive batters, forcing the Lancers to bring Aaron Myers in from the bullpen. With the bases loaded on a 1-0 count, Shepherd singled to center field to bring two runs home. A third run went across home plate after another fielding error by Longwood. With a 7-5 lead, Sankey gave the Flames an insurance run on his second sacrifice fly in the top of the ninth inning to push the final score to 8-5.

tered five runs in a sixth inning that was highlighted by a threerun home run by Grauer. Pitcher Parker Bean threw his first complete game, collecting 11 strikeouts and allowing five hits, one run and a walk. Bean did not surrender a hit until the bottom of the fifth inning. For the first five innings, the Flames struggled to garner any offense against Myers. However, Liberty began to manage some offensive production against Myers in the top of the sixth inning. Longwood committed two errors to begin the inning, and Seiz scored on a sacrifice fly from Britt. With one out, after Myers walked Close, Grauer launched a three-run home run over the left-field wall, giving Liberty a 4-0 lead. Mitchell Kuebbing relieved Myers but also struggled, walking his first batter and hitting another later in the inning. With two outs, Shepherd brought home another run, increasing the Flames lead to five. Bean continued to mow down batters until Delk smashed a solo home run to left field. After the home run, Bean pitched two more innings to solidify Liberty’s victory. Liberty will host James Madison Tuesday, April 15 at 6 p.m.

Liberty 6, Longwood 1 Liberty completed its threegame sweep against Longwood Sunday, April 13, defeating the Lancers 6-1. The Flames mus-

LEASURE is the editor-in-chief. BATTLE is the sports editor.


APRIL 15, 2014

Liberty Champion/B3

Pitching staff maintains dominance Suffocating pitching and frequent shutouts have driven the Flames as they try to repeat as Big South champions Greg Leasure

Baseball players have long observed that hitting can sometimes be contagious. For the Liberty Flames baseball team, the same is true of pitching. The team has started conference play with a record of 14-1 (29-8 overall), including four straight series sweeps against High Point University, Presbyterian College, Virginia Military Institute (VMI) and Longwood University. That success is due in no small part to the team’s stellar pitching. At one point, the Flames even racked up more than 60 straight scoreless innings against Big South Conference opponents. “It’s enjoyable when they can get in and out like that and get us back in the dugout to hit,” senior catcher Danny Grauer said. “And whenever we put up runs like we have been, it gives them that much more confidence. So we’re kind of working off each other.” The Flames normal Friday starting pitcher, senior Trey Lambert, leads the team with 63 and 1/3 innings pitched and an 8-1 record. The rest of the Flames starting pitchers have followed suit, as

Carson Herndon, Parker Bean, Jared Lyons and Blake Fulghum all own ERAs under 3.00. Even when the Flames had slow starts — a rare occurrence in 2014 — the bullpen has stepped up. Shawn Clowers, Matt Marsh and Ashton Perritt have stood out, allowing only a combined nine runs in more than 66 combined innings in relief. The Flames have used only eight pitchers for more than 90 percent of the Flames total innings pitched this season — mostly because the top half of the pitching staff has been so good. However, Flames Head Coach Jim Toman said he anticipates having to rest some of his pitchers during the second half of the season in preparation for tournament time. “It’s a marathon, not a sprint,” Toman said. “… We need to keep playing well. The end of the year is when you want to be playing your best, so we have to make sure our pitchers are well-rested come tournament time.” Coming off a 2013 year in which thensenior catcher Trey Wimmer anchored the team by starting 64 of the team’s 65 games, Lambert said that Grauer’s presence behind the plate has helped make the transition away from Wimmer a

Leah Stauffer | Liberty Champion

COMMAND — Liberty’s starting pitchers have a combined record of 24-6. smooth one. role of Saturday starting pitcher against “I think one common factor that a lot Longwood April 12 with a complete of people are looking over is Grauer,” game, but time will tell how Herndon’s Lambert said. “He’s been back there re- absence will affect the Flames. gardless of who’s throwing, and he’s doing “Everyone on the pitching roster wants a great job of calling the game, control- to compete with each other to get the most ling the game.” strikeouts and get the most wins and that Another emerging star is freshman kind of stuff,” Bean said. “When one guy Parker Bean. The 6-foot-5-inch right- does well, the guy the next day wants to hander came within two outs of a no- follow up with a performance as well and hitter against VMI Sunday, April 6, and help the team get the (win). At the end of threw his first collegiate complete game the day, it’s all about getting the win, and I against Longwood Sunday, April 13. think that’s what we’ve done so far.” “Parker was really good in the fall, so our expectations were Sunday starter or midweek starter,” Toman said. “It’s very LEASURE is the editor-in-chief. difficult for a freshman to do that, but he has the arm to do it. He’s still learning how to pitch a little bit, but he was obviously excellent (against VMI). We needed him to pitch as a freshman, and he’s done The Flames pitching staff well.” has compiled a Big SouthBean will be especially important now leading 2.49 ERA through given the Flames uncertainty about the the Flames first 37 games health of usual Saturday starter Carson Herndon, who is currently sidelined with this season. a forearm injury. Blake Fulghum filled the


Courtney Russo | Liberty Champion

ACE — Trey Lambert leads the Flames with an 8-1 record and a 2.27 ERA.

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Liberty Champion/B4

APRIL 15, 2014

Leah Stauffer | Liberty Champion

BACKHAND — Shea Thomas is one of the most successful tennis players in Flames singles history and hopes to continue his career professionally after graduation.

Shea Thomas prepares for curtain call The senior tennis player hopes to finish his career on a high note before embarking on his future endeavors Ryley Rush

Liberty University senior Shea Thomas’ parents plunked him onto a tennis court for the first time at three years old. With a racket roughly as large as his pintsized body, it was hard to tell whether he was swinging the racket or the other way around — but he seemed to have a natural talent for the sport. At six, Thomas played his first tournament, coming in third in the under-10 group. From that point forward, he played more and more, eventually landing in Lynchburg years later as a member of the Flames tennis team. Now, graduation is just weeks away, and

it is hard for Thomas to fathom the point he has reached in his tennis career. “It’s going to be kind of crazy today,” Thomas said just hours before his April 4 senior day downing of Radford. “It’s surreal, playing my last match on the home courts here. I remember the first day I stepped on this campus — pretty vividly, actually — and growing on and off the tennis court over my four years here has been remarkable.” From a solid freshman season that included a five-match win streak in the No. 3 position during spring dual matches to a junior campaign where he compiled a team-record 27 wins in singles and doubles competition, Thomas has always stayed consistent.

Now in his final season as a Flame, Thomas is on the brink of tying Siim Tuus for the most singles victories in Liberty Flames history. After posting nine wins in doubles this season, he surpassed Giancarlo Lemmi for the most wins in Liberty doubles history. While Thomas’ on-court skills are crucial, of course, it is the intangibles that he considers his greatest assets. “I think leadership is one of my strengths, being able to lead from the top court, as well as the fight that I give on every play to pump up the guys the entire match,” Thomas said. Now, with the end of his senior season fast approaching, Thomas’ energy and ability are more important than ever.

Season struggles continue Liberty’s women’s lacrosse faltered versus conference rival High Point Nate Haywood

The Liberty Lady Flames lacrosse team (211, 1-2 Big South) surrendered an early one-goal lead and fell to the conference-leading High Point University Lady Panthers (7-5, 3-0 Big South) 17-5 Friday, April 11. The Lady Panthers struck first when sophomore Emily Meier spun past a defender and scored her 15th goal of the sea-

son to give High Point a 1-0 lead after less than two minutes of play. The Lady Flames tied the game at one when redshirt junior Morgan Becker scored her 18th goal of the season. After a High Point shot was deflected by Liberty senior Kristen Masullo, senior Christie Dougherty scooped up the ball and scored to give the Lady Panthers a 2-1 lead. At the 20:02 and 19:00 marks, sophomores Alyssa Kidder and Kallie Brit-

Leah Stauffer | Liberty Champion

LOW POINT — The Panthers outshot the Lady Flames 31-16 Friday, April 11.

ton each scored a goal to give the Lady Flames the lead. Thirty seconds later, the Lady Panthers tied the game at three. High Point scored three quick goals to retake the lead when Becker scored to cut the deficit to two. The Lady Flames did not score again until 28 minutes later. But that was not the case for the Lady Panthers, as they scored 10 unanswered goals to increase the lead to 16-4. Junior Kendyl Gardner scored three goals in the last seven minutes of the first period, which ignited a 10-goal run. Senior Alec Perry scored less than 30 seconds into the start of the second period. After that, Puliese and Kuhlman added goals. The High Point lead reached 10 when Callaway scored. The Lady Panthers added two more goals to make the score 16-4. “Unfortunately, we lost the momentum,” Masullo said. “They got goals on us, and we started playing down.” With less than five minutes in the second period, Kidder scored her second goal of the game and eighth of the season from a free-position shot. Kidder’s goal ended the Lady Flames run and concluded the scoring for Liberty. High Point added another

goal as sophomore Kristina Renner scored with 43 seconds left in the game. “We talked a lot about this week, about just coming out and playing our game, you know,” Head Coach Kelly Nangle said. “… And you know, we just really didn’t do the things that we talked about that we were going to do today, unfortunately.” Liberty was coming into this matchup after its first conference win of the season. However, the Lady Flames were held to five or less goals for the first time since their Feb. 18 matchup against Navy, when they only scored three. The Lady Panthers had six more shots than Liberty in the first period, but in the second, High Point had increased that margin to 15. Liberty had more turnovers than shots on goal in the game. “They just need to play with more confidence,” Nangle said. “It’s tough. You know, you’re going up against the No.1 team, but they need to go into games expecting to win and not hoping to win. That’s the difference right now.” The Lady Flames will continue conference play Saturday, April 19 against conference rival Winthrop University at 12 p.m. HAYWOOD is a sports reporter.

While every season has its ups and downs, Thomas and his teammates are not satisfied with their play so far and hope to finish the season stronger than they began. Once his collegiate career comes to an end, Thomas plans to try playing professionally over the summer. If all goes well, he will stick with it. If not, he will go into his field of business finance. Either way, Thomas is as doggedly optimistic as the three-year-old who was as big as his first racket. Whether or not this season is his last, as the postseason draws near, Thomas is determined to make it his best yet. RUSH is a sports reporter.

TRIUMPHS continued from B1 Woodrum hitting Peterson in stride for a 65-yard bomb. “Coming out, we kind of knew it was going to be an uphill battle,” Woodrum said. “Since we were playing touch, we knew we weren’t going to be able to run the ball like at all. We were going to come out and throw the ball a little bit, and we just took advantage of what they were giving us on (Peterson’s touchdown).” Incumbent two-year starter Woodrum finished his day 4-8 passing with 88 yards and a touchdown to lead all passers in yards, but all four quarterbacks on the roster saw action on the day. Javan Shashaty completed 70 percent of his passes and threw the touchdown pass to running back Todd Macon that clinched the game for the white team. Redshirtfreshman Stephon Masha showed positive glimpses as well, using his legs to get outside of the pocket and make some strong-armed throws. Bo Swanson saw the least amount of time, only launching three passes. Former defensive lineman Cory Freeman was awarded the Luke 2:52 Award at halftime, which is presented to the graduating senior with outstanding whole-person development. In other spring award news, a pair of youngsters won the Samkon Gado Award for most improved player over the course of spring practice — redshirt freshman wide

receiver Justin Fritts on offense and sophomore cornerback Ray Ferguson on defense. “I think (Fritts) can make an impact,” Gill said. “He has good athletic ability. He has really good hands. Probably his best asset is his ability to catch the deep ball. (Ferguson) has made plays. He’s made some interceptions in practice. He’s now a guy we feel we can put on the field.” Fritts finished with two catches for 11 yards, while Ferguson was credited with one tackle and one pass breakup, swatting away a deep ball from Woodrum to Gabe Henderson in the first half. A walk-on, Ferguson has worked his way towards competing for a starting role in the secondary in just his second year with the team. “I’ve put in a lot of hard work on and off the field and it’s paid off for me,” Ferguson said. “I’m excited about where I’m at on the depth chart. Today was kind of a stepping stone for what the summer will bring.” TICHENOR is a sports reporter.


The Flames return their top four leading receivers and top five leading rushers from the 2013 co-Big South Conference Championship team.


APRIL 15, 2014

Liberty Champion/B5

Run for charity

Students to raise money for nonprofits Jacob Tellers

Courtney Russo | Liberty Champion

Snowboarding for speed RACE — Students competed in the first official Quiksilver Quikrun at Liberty Mountain Snowflex Centre.

Snowflex closed out the school year by hosting the Quiksilver Quikrun competition

Lauren Glossner

Liberty student skiers and snowboarders were invited to participate in the Liberty Mountain Snowflex Centre’s first official Quiksilver Quikrun Saturday, April 12. According to Ryan Leeds, a Snowflex employee who helped with the Quiksilver Quikrun race, the event had unofficially taken place once before during the summer. “This is the first time we have done this event during the school year,” Leeds said. “We did a small competition like this during the Snowflex summer camps, and it went pretty well. We figured we should try to in-

corporate this into the normal Snowflex competition schedule, just to give competitors something different to compete in.” During the event, participants experienced sunny, 70-degree weather. Registration at the Liberty Mountain Snowflex Centre started at noon, and the race started at 1 p.m. Seven riders competed to see who could make it down the slope in the shortest amount of time. Five competitors were male and two were female. “The event got started with an idea to have a race down Snowflex while using the terrain park features,” Leeds said. “The idea is to get the fastest time. However, you can get time taken off of your run if you do

some tricks that have a higher level of difficulty.” Each rider was allowed to have one practice run and one real run. One girl took a pretty bad fall during her practice run and contemplated not doing her official run. After resting a few minutes, she decided to continue to ride. “This is not a big event. It’s meant to be a fun (and) less serious event where people can just go out and have fun,” Leeds said. “This is an event that anyone, no matter what their skill level is, can go out and possibly win.” The prizes were different types of Quiksilver snowboarding gear. The winner received a backpack. Other participants

walked away with facemasks and lunchboxes, and everyone who competed received a prize. The winner was 2012 alumnus William Scheren, whose winning time was 18.45 seconds. Scheren has been snowboarding for 15 years. Although he now lives in Baltimore, he still comes back on some weekends to snowboard at the Liberty Mountain Snowflex Centre. To find out about other Snowflex events, visit liberty. edu/snowflex or call 434-5823539.

GLOSSNER is a feature reporter.

Giving back to the community Honor students reach out to the Lynchburg youth by volunteering at the Jubilee Center Jessica Jordan

Alpha Lambda Delta (ALD) officers went to the Jubilee Center Wednesday, April 9 to host an Easter Outreach event for nearly 30 elementary-age students. According to its web page on, ALD is an honor society on campus made up of students who complete their academics with excellence. Throughout the year, ALD hosts many events in Lynchburg in an effort to reach out to the youth in the community. One such event is the Easter Outreach.

This year marks the fifth year the Easter Outreach has been held by ALD, according to faculty advisor Dr. Marilyn Gadomski. Seven ALD members and officers spearheaded the project and spent their Wednesday afternoon running the event. The officers began the event with a craft, chosen by ALD historian Anna Charuhas. The craft turned a paper bag and colorful tissue paper into trees, from which students hung a notecard with the verse John 15:5 written on it. During snack time, the volunteers took the opportunity to

tell the kids the story of Adam and Eve. “I learned how to do this activity on a missions trip in Peru, and I thought the students at Jubilee would enjoy it,” Charuhas said. “It was great that it was a tree because it worked perfectly with the verse we chose to focus on with the kids.” The students began arriving from school around 3:45 p.m. and trickled in as they completed their homework. “At some of our other events, we don’t have a huge turnout, so it was cool to have so many kids show up,” sophomore ALD member Abby Coyle said. “… I

was grateful today went so well, because I think our gospel story was a good reminder to the kids on why we celebrate Easter. … I would love to help out with the event again next year.” The ALD officers ended the day by taking pictures with the kids and going to the Jubilee Center gym to play more games. For more information about ALD and future events, call 434-582-2080 or email

JORDAN is a feature reporter.

The Fish and Bread Project and One Community Church are hosting a charity 5k trail run Saturday, April 26. The race will take place at 10 a.m.-1 p.m. at One Body in Christ Ministries at 406 Briar Cliff Road, Lynchburg, Va. The Fish and Bread Project is a ministry involving all of the men’s dormitories on the hill, whose purpose is to help support two non-profit organizations. Matthew Short, the resident director for dorms 18 and 22, said he began The Fish and Bread Project in the fall of 2012 as a way to encourage Liberty students to be active in supporting ministries through both giving and prayer. The Fish and Bread 5k was organized as part of an ongoing effort to raise money for the two ministries the project supports, the Blue Ridge Pregnancy Center and Axiom Sports United. The Blue Ridge Pregnancy Center, located in Lynchburg, provides support for pregnant women. According to the center’s website, the ministry attempts to serve both the practical and spiritual needs of these women by providing financial support as well as biblical counseling. Axiom Sports United is a sports camp ministry whose mission is to spread the gospel through the universal appeal of sports. Nearly $10,000 has been raised so far for the race, but the goal is to raise $30,000 by April 26, according to Short. According to Resident Assistant James Snyder, the money raised from the 5k will be split equally between the two organizations. Participants can contribute money by creating an account on the Fund Easy page for the race and getting people to sponsor them, Snyder explained. According to Snyder, the Fund Easy page can be reached through The Fish and Bread Project Facebook page. According to the event website, every runner who raises at least $25 will be entered in a drawing for a $50 Chipotle gift card. The top 25 male and female finishers in the race will be eligible to win a Go Pro Hero 3+ Camera if they have also raised a minimum of $25. For more information on how to sign up for this race, visit or The Fish and Bread Project’s Facebook page.

TELLERS is a sports reporter.


Liberty Champion/B6

APRIL 15, 2014

‘Most delightful,’ Mary Poppins takes stage Brittany Jones

Mary Poppins walked, umbrella in hand, onto the Tower Theater stage April 11 and lit up the room with song and dance in Alluvion Stage Company’s first Disney production since Tarzan. According to Liberty’s website, the show based on the books by P.L. Travers and the classic Walt Disney film will be showing through May 11. “The shows we perform are decided as a department, but Mary Poppins was offered to us (by Music Theatre International) after we did Tarzan,” Linda Cooper, artistic director of the Alluvion Stage Company and Liberty’s Theatre Arts department chair and associate professor, said. Cooper thought the cast’s first rehearsal of Mary Poppins was amazing and is excited to see the audience’s reaction to each show. “It’s so full of life and color,” Cooper said. “The audience will love the big musical numbers that they know so well.” According to Alluvion’s website, Catharine Kay, a Shenandoah Conservatory alumna, is filling the role of Mary Poppins. “I have never worked with her before, but she blew me away,” Cooper said. “She was Mary Poppins as soon as she opened her mouth.” Cooper said she has also been excited about Carson Burkett, a Liberty alumnus filling the role of Bert. Although the lead role of Mary Poppins will be played by someone from outside of Liberty, the show will feature many Liberty graduates. “I think it is important to have Liberty alumni (in the shows), because it keeps us connected to each other and to our mission,” Cooper said. According to Liberty’s website, the Department of Theatre Arts holds to its purpose of developing observant, sensitive theatrical artists who, with skills, training, knowledge and professional attitudes, can glorify Christ through their craft and the testimony of their lives. Alluvion also works with Liberty to promote the students’ talents and uphold Liberty’s mission through theatrical arts, according to Alluvion’s website. Cooper said she sees the importance of the professionalism and skill of the actors as being vital to their careers as well as being their duty to God to share the gospel. She believes Mary Poppins has been a great way to push the cast and crew in their abilities. “If you aren’t any good, then no one will want to listen to your testimony,” Cooper said. “We tried very hard to raise the bar of excellence in all areas, including music, dancing, lights and costumes.” According to Cooper, the performance of Tarzan accomplished the goal of excellence and resulted in the offer of performing Mary Poppins. Other shows have been offered as well, including Disney’s The Little Mermaid, which will be premiering Sept. 5. For more information on current and future shows, visit or call 434-582-2078.

• • • • •

Courtney Russo | Liberty Champion

LAUGH — The audience enjoyed a Disney classic brought to life on the Tower Theater stage.

FAMILY continued from B8 “Among other things, (Mary Poppins) teaches (the Banks family) to cherish each other, which is one of my favorite lessons from the production,” Osterhus said. Besides being an actress in the play, Osterhus is also one of two dance captains. She and fellow actress Sarah Seaman are responsible for keeping up with all the choreography and making sure everyone’s dancing is on point. The casting process began in November. Auditions involved singing and dancing as well as monologues. Lind said the cast has been in rehearsals since the end of February. Much of that time involved learning chorography, according to Osterhus. “We had our choreographer from Broadway (showing) us original ‘Mary Poppins’ Broadway choreography, so you can imagine it was pretty hard to learn right away,” actor Jonathan Hogue said. Despite the large time commitment, he said learning the dances is rewarding. He was enthusiastic about being a part of all the dance numbers and the show in general. “I think this story is just such a joy, and every rehearsal I’ve gone to, you can see that the rest of the cast feels the same way,” Hogue said. “They all love this story and this music, and they want to contribute to the joy and magic that it’s sharing.” And according to Osterhus, it is not just the story and the end result but also the pieces in between and pulling it all together that makes the process worth it. “For me, this process has been challenging, overwhelming, exciting, frustrating and rewarding,” Osterhus said. “It’s been such a joy to be part of such a wonderful cast under wise and excellent

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directors and managers.” Osterhus said students should enjoy the musical because of its fun and heartwarming nature. Hogue added that people should see the musical because it is bigger than anything the Tower Theater has hosted before. “‘Mary Poppins’ is the kind of show that anyone and everyone can enjoy,” Lind said. “Students will walk out of the theater humming the familiar tunes

that they know and love from the movie, as well as (having seen) a great message about the importance of family and the love a family has for each other.” For more information about performance times and ticket prices, visit or call 434-582-2078. BROWND is a feature reporter.

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APRIL 15, 2014

Race for Haiti


Liberty Champion/B7

5 and 10k to raise money and awareness for orphans Dylan Friberg

Runners will flock to Percival Island Saturday, April 19, in order to compete in a 5 or 10k race to raise money and awareness for orphans in Haiti. The race, titled “Love Endures,” is being coordinated in partnership with the Hands and Feet Project (HAF), founded by Audio Adrenaline in 2004. According to race coordinator Ryan Wheeler, the goal is to raise money to put toward saving homeless Haitian children. “We are trying to raise $5,000 to help HAF build a brand new orphanage to help save more of the 750,000 children who are homeless in Haiti,” Wheeler said. According to fellow race coordinator Courtney Woolfolk, they are expecting between 100 and 150 people to show up for the race but are optimistic for more. “I am personally hoping for somewhere around 300,” Woolfolk said. “I believe we serve a big God that likes to blow our minds and exceed our expectations.” According to Wheeler, the race is also being sponsored by Liberty University’s psychology club, PsyComm. The sponsorship came about through lead coordinator Josiah Henderson’s connections with Liberty’s Department of Psychology. Wheeler said Henderson, a psychology major and avid runner, inquired about the sponsorship through psychology professor Dr. Anderson and discovered that the club would be delighted to help. According to Wheeler and Woolfolk, the race course is a mostly flat trail that is paved and easy-going. Wheeler said the 5k is an easier course than the 10k, as the longer distance requires racers to turn around and run up some difficult hills. Other than that, Wheeler said, the course is trouble-free.

“The course is paved, so racers don’t have to worry about looking at the ground the whole time for roots and rocks,” Wheeler said. “It is, for the most part, flat and runs parallel to the James River, which makes for a gorgeous view on a Saturday morning run.” According to Wheeler, HAF partners with many groups nationwide to put on fundraiser races. The HAF staff is very knowledgeable, Wheeler said, and helps make the process of setting up a race as simple and hassle-free as possible. “One of the HAF staff helped provide us with posters, graphic designs, a registration website and a donation website all for free,” Wheeler said. “I think the hardest part of the process was actually just setting up additional sponsorships with local businesses in Lynchburg.” Wheeler said he got involved with the project after Henderson approached him at church to tell him about the opportunity. “After researching the organization and seeing how they are really making an impact in Haiti, I had to jump aboard to bless others who have been devastated by natural disasters and poverty,” Wheeler said. According to Wheeler and Woolfolk, anyone can get behind the cause and partner with HAF to coordinate a race and help make a difference in the lives of thousands of Haitian orphans. The race’s address at Percival Island is 1600 Concord Turnpike, Lynchburg, Va., 24502. For more information on the Love Endures race, visit the Facebook page by searching for the event “Love Endures: 5k/10k Race for Haitian Orphans.”

FRIBERG is an opinion writer.

Dale Carty II | Liberty Champion

AWARD— Guidelines for the garments included the use of 60 percent recycled materials.

STYLE continued from B8 “In this (show), you (could) definitely see everyone’s creativity come along.” Isidro said. “Just the whole idea of using garbage bags or … all of these different kinds of materials is really cool.” Isidro received the Best Use of Color Award, the Audience Choice Award, and the Judges First Choice Award for her designs, which included the use of coffee filters, brown paper, and duct tape. “Every year, we pick a charity to donate (the) proceeds from our show to,” Goodrich said. “This year, our charity is Channel Initiative, (which) was actually started by Liberty University alumna Dominique Vidale-Plaza. Her charity is over in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Her goal with that organization

is to minister to the underappreciated women and families over (there).” The show’s intermission began at 9 p.m., during which the audience was offered refreshments. By 9:30 p.m., the models came back out with their designers, and Goodrich came back to the stage to present the fashion show awards 15 minutes later. The show came to a close just after 10 p.m., when Goodrich closed with prayer. Daniel Kraus, a student at Liberty’s Aviation Technician School, attended the show to watch his wife model the design by their friend, Lisa Povrik. “There were some pretty awesome dresses,” Kraus said. “It was fun to watch (the models) afterwards, when they came out with the designers.” Though this was her first time as a designer, Ramsy was glad

she was able to display her talent in the show and hopes students who are unsure of their talents will gain confidence, just as she did. “I (encourage students) just to try everything, even if (their) friends aren’t gonna try,” Ramsy said. “There’s, like, so many opportunities at Liberty to get involved in really random stuff. Just go with it.” Isidro also believes students should not let their fears hold them back. “Don’t be afraid to try new things,” Isidro said to students. “Don’t let fear get in the way because, once you let that go, your talents just show through.”

BROWN is a feature reporter.

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APRIL 15, 2014

Courtney Russo | Liberty Champion

CONCERT — Christian rap artists such as Trip Lee (left) and Tedashii (at left in bottom right photo) bring a night full of energy to the Vines Center during CFAW.

Concert encourages students Tedashii, Trip Lee and Christon Gray urge students to keep God at the center of their lives every day Kathleen DeWitt

The crowd fell silent with anticipation as the lights in the Vines Center dimmed for the Tedashii, Trip Lee and Christon Gray concert hosted by Student Activities (SA) Saturday, April 12. Fans surrounded the stage and screams erupted as the performance began. Gray opened with “Long Way Down” and immediately had the audience involved. Whether clapping, snapping or raising hands in the air, Gray encouraged everyone to focus on God and give him glory. “As Christians, we need to stop being so serious about ourselves, because that is when we take him (God) more seriously,” Gray said. Concert attendee Mary Beth Barnes said Christian Gray was her favorite art-

ist at the concert. Barnes came to Liberty University for College for a Weekend and appreciated the opportunity to listen to rap music that focuses on glorifying God. “I’ve always wanted to go to a rap concert, and it is really cool that there is Christian rap that I can enjoy,” Barnes said. When Tripp Lee took the stage following Gray’s performance, nearly the entire audience rose to its feet. Red and yellow lights danced around the room as Lee performed popular songs, including “King Like Mine” and “One Sixteen.” He moved rapidly across the stage as he rapped and shared the gospel, paving the way for Tedashii’s performance. As soon as he took the stage, Tedashii began rapping and made sure to communicate the purpose behind his music. “I like rapping, but I want to keep the main thing the main thing,” Tedashii said.

“Jesus is the main thing.” The crowd danced and cheered as Tedashii rapped and beat boxed from the stage. During his performance, he pulled one audience member on stage to rap on the spot. Tedashii performed “Dark Days, Darker Nights” and “Fire Away,” two songs from his album “Below Paradise,” set to release in May 2014. He stopped between songs to share pieces of his story with the audience. Through song and speech, his resounding message was “You (God) must increase, and I must decrease,” as he stressed the importance of following God faithfully in the midst of persecution and difficult circumstances. Tedashii then took audience members on a trip down memory lane as he brought back some of his older hits. “I’m

a Believer” and “Envy” sparked intense energy, as groups from across the room began dancing to the beat of the music. As Tedashii ended the show with “Bravo,” the energy throughout the Vines Center increased. According to sophomore Liberty student Andre Beckles, the finale was particularly memorable. “During the finale, the music was louder, and the crowd was more engaged,” Beckles said. “It felt like a home environment where you belong.” This vibe lingered as the performance ended, and some people were still rapping as they left the building and headed back to their dorms. To find out more about future SA events, visit DEWITT is a feature reporter.

Green trend expands

Saving the planet one stitch at a time at the annual fashion show Olivia Brown

Liberty students showcased their design skills at the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences’ (FACS) eighth annual fashion show Saturday, April 12, in the Schilling Center. For this year’s theme,

Dale Carty II | Liberty Champion

COLOR — Eco-friendly fashion takes the stage.

“Go Green, Go Glam,” student designers were required to create outfits that incorporated at least 60 percent recycled materials and 40 percent of any other materials. “We (had) designers using everything from old CDs to newspaper to WalMart bags,” Fashion Show Director Kristen Goodrich said. “The possibilities (were) literally endless, and (the designers) have (used these materials) in such an incredibly beautiful way.” The show displayed designs from 20 students, which is the largest group that has participated in a Liberty fashion show, according to Goodrich. “Most of the designers are students from the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences, the fashion-merchandising program.” Goodrich said. “(However), we do have some students come in

from other departments who just love to sew, and they just want to get involved and they want to design. So, it is just open to all students of Liberty.” For Devon Ramsy, a senior at Liberty, this was her first time participating in a fashion show as a designer. “I think it is really cool that we could piece together eco-friendly and fashion all together into something that I think Liberty (stands) for,” Ramsy said. “I think (going green) is something that’s really evolving to be a big trend right now (around) the whole world. I think it’s cool that we can kind of take a sector of it and make it our own in fashion.” Ramsy went on to win the Green Elegance Award later that night. Returning designer and Liberty Senior Amanda Isidro, also said she enjoyed the theme.


Courtney Russo| Liberty Champion

CLASSIC — The audience enjoyed a night of family-centered entertainment.

Alluvion premieres play ‘Mary Poppins’ focuses on the bond between relatives Elizabeth Brownd

With the success of the recent film “Saving Mr. Banks,” the beloved character of Mary Poppins is making a comeback, and it is fitting that Liberty’s Tower Theater will end this season with a theatrical version of the wellknown story.

“‘Mary Poppins’ is a fun-loving, family friendly musical that teaches love, respect and the importance of family through singing, dancing and a flying nanny,” Rachel Lind, one of the members of the play’s ensemble, said. Lind said the plot of the musical follows that of the “Mary Poppins” movie, but it also focuses more on the

relationship between the children and their parents. There is also a slightly larger emphasis on the change of heart in Mr. Banks, a side of the story that was specifically highlighted by the recent film. Actress Rachel Osterhus agreed that the musical is definitely more familycentered.


Liberty Champion April 15 2014