Page 1


THE LUMBER JACK OCT. 14, 2021 – OCT. 20 2021

Online at

From the Editor


was terrified before this semester — terrified of not making any friends, of failing my classes and most of all, terrified I wouldn’t measure up to expectations in my new role at The Lumberjack. I’m happy to say I was terrified for nothing. I have met some pretty cool friends, most of whom also work here at the paper. I’m not failing any classes so far, and I’m actually really enjoying my time as assistant Op-Ed editor. Starting freshman year at the pinnacle of the pandemic left me confused and frustrated. I felt behind in the friends department, and I still deal with major impostor syndrome. But diving into new things head-first has been miraculous for my growth. I am learning to be more sure of myself, to take MARLEY deep breaths and that generally, nothing is as bad as it seems. GREEN I can best describe my experiences this semester by saying this: I have ASST. OP-ED taken a lot of small leaps of faith. No crazy, big risks; just small ways to push EDITOR me out of my comfort zone. The first leap of faith I took this fall was taking this position; it has worked out well so far. Another has been making efforts to befriend everybody around me, and that has gone pretty well, too. My most recent was auditioning for Elevation, NAU’s premier mixed acapella group. To my shock, that also went in my favor. Of course, it won’t always. But in my book, failure after making an effort beats never trying. There is a small win in the fact that I tried at all, and besides, I likely learned something. The Aries in me wants to be the best. I’m learning now that I don’t need to be, I just need to try. I appreciate my new friends and experiences more than anything — and they each became reachable when I took a few small leaps of faith. Thank you for reading.


Phone: (928) 523-4921 Fax: (928) 523-9313 P.O. Box 6000 Flagstaff, AZ 86011

Editor-in-Chief Nathan Manni

Managing Editor Camille Sipple

Copy Chief Trevor Skeen

Faculty Adviser David Harpster

Print Chief Ash Lohmann

Director of Digital Content and Social Media Emily Gerdes

Stay up to date with local and campuswide breaking news at

Online at Latest Edition & Archive Social media

Media Innovation Center Editorial Board News Editor Mark Fabery Asst. News Editor Tess Stafford Op-Ed Editor Kylie Soto Asst. Op-Ed Editor Marley Green Features Editor Olivia Charlson


Asst. Features Editor Lauren Anderson

Sports Adviser Rory Faust

Culture Editor Katelyn Rodriguez

Director of Photography MacKenzie Brower

Asst. Culture Editor Haylee Emch

Asst. Dir. of Photography Brian Burke

Sports Editor Brenden Martin

Director of Illustration Diana Ortega

Asst. Sports Editor Will Hopkins


Director of Multimedia Shawn Patti

On the cover Freshman running back Kevin Daniels (22) rushes against Idaho State at Walkup Skydome, Oct. 2. Brian Burke | The Lumberjack

Corrections & Clarifications The Lumberjack is committed to factual correctness and accuracy. If you find an error in our publication, please email Nathan Manni at

PoliceBeat Oct. 4 At 8:34 a.m., a student requested an escort from Flagstaff Medical Center (FMC) to Allen Hall. NAUPD responded and provided assistance. At 11:38 a.m., a SkyView resident reported they believed someone was in their apartment. NAUPD responded and provided information. Oct. 5 At 9:19 a.m., a High Country Conference Center employee reported a nonstudent trespassing. NAUPD responded and searched the area, but no contact was made. A work order for solid waste was placed with Facility Services.

compiled by Mark Fabery

At 1:58 p.m., a student reported a suspicious subject in the Communications building. Officers responded and determined the subject was a staff member.

nonstudent, but witnessed no criminal activity. Officers took a report. Oct. 9 At 1:02 a.m., Cowden Hall staff reported an intoxicated student. NAUPD, At 10:42 p.m., a Reilly FFD and GMT responded. Hall RA reported a broken The student was deferred for room placard. NAUPD minor in consumption of responded and took a report. alcohol and transported to FMC. Oct. 7 At 4:20 a.m., an Adel At 9:55 a.m., a student Mathematics custodian reported damaged concrete in reported finding the building the SkyView Parking Garage. unlocked. NAUPD responded NAUPD responded and found and witnessed no criminal no safety risk, but staff was activity. notified. At 5:26 p.m., a Campus Heights resident reported a suspicious odor. Officers responded and found the heater caused it. Facility Services was notified.

At 2:04 p.m., an Allen Hall RA reported the theft At 11:07 p.m., a Hilltop of showerheads. NAUPD Townhomes resident requested responded and took a report. a welfare check on a person sitting in a vehicle. NAUPD At 8:34 p.m., a student responded and contacted one reported a suspicious person nonstudent, who was arrested near the NAU Bookstore. on an outstanding warrant. NAUPD and University Safety Aides (USA) responded to Oct. 8 search the area, but the subject At 1:44 a.m, a student was gone upon arrival. requested assistance with an intoxicated student at the At 10:37 p.m., a Reilly corner of Knoles Drive and East Hall resident reported Runke Drive. NAUPD, USAs, suspicious subjects throwing FFD and GMT responded and objects at cars. NAUPD the student was transported to responded and provided FMC. The student was also information. criminally deferred for minor in consumption of alcohol. Oct. 6 At 10:21 a.m., a Health At 4:57 p.m., the Professions staff member Biological Sciences Annex requested assistance for a received a burglary alarm. student who passed out. NAUPD responded, searched NAUPD, Flagstaff Fire the area and determined Department (FFD) and the alarm was caused by an Guardian Medical Transport employee. (GMT) responded, and the student was transported to At 9:39 p.m., a student FMC. reported two couples fighting in lot 32. NAUPD responded and contacted a student and

At 7:26 p.m., a Honors College RA reported harassment. NAUPD responded and determined no harassment had occurred. At 10:09 p.m., NAUPD reported a propped door on the west side of the Student and Academic Services building. An officer cleared the building and witnessed no criminal activity.

Total Number of COVID-19 Vaccine Doses Administered: 160,957 Total number of people who have recieved at least one dose of COVId-19 vaccine: 74,747 Number of people fully Vaccinated: 27% Community Transmission Rate: High Number of current positive cases: 385

Oct. 10 At 3:51 a.m., a Cowden Hall resident reported a subject in their room without their permission. NAUPD responded and deferred a student for minor in consumption of alcohol. At 3:29 p.m., a student requested medical assistance for another student having a seizure in Gabaldon Hall. NAUPD, FFD and GMT responded, but the subject refused medical transport. At 6:30 p.m., a student reported the odor of gas in McKay Village. NAUPD and FFD responded, but detected no odor and cleared the area as safe Work Control was advised.

Subscribe to our newsletter! The LJ Express is the weekly newsletter curated by the staff of NAU’s student newspaper, The Lumberjack. Subscribing allows the best stories of the week to conveniently arrive directly in your inbox.

OCT. 14 - OCT. 20, 2021 | THE LUMBERJACK


Arizona Students’ Association launches ballot initiative mark fabery


he student-led Arizona Students’ Association (ASA) has launched a statewide ballot initiative, called the “As Nearly Free As Possible Act.” If included on the ballot and approved by voters in 2022, it will ensure funding for higher education in the state, while limiting tuition and fee increases. ASA’s website described the ballot initiative as something that will cap tuition and fees, in addition to investing in higher education, making Arizona’s three public universities more accessible and affordable for all residents. If passed, the measure will require the Arizona State Legislature to fund at least 50% of tuition and fees for undergraduate students from Arizona. However, if the state fails to allocate the funds, a 2% surcharge will be added to the state’s corporate income tax. Along with investing in higher education, it would guarantee tuition and fee rates for the four years a student attends college, and further limit tuition and fee increases from the Arizona Board of Regents (ABOR) or universities themselves, mandating that any increase is limited to the prior year’s cost-of-living increase. ASA organizing director Kyle Nitschke said the act is designed to hold the state government accountable to Arizona’s Constitution, which states higher education “shall be as nearly free as possible.” “Due to continuous increases in tuition and fees, along with continuous budget cuts, more students are being priced out of a higher education,” Nitschke said. “If passed, this act will make the state cap tuition and fees while investing in higher education, making our public universities more accessible and affordable for all.” Nitschke explained the ASA decided to launch the ballot initiative for the upcoming 2022 midterm elections because per student funding for Arizona’s public colleges and universities is 55% below 2008 levels. During that time, the average price of instate tuition increased by $5,384 for public four-year universities, while there was a $3,669 cut in per-student funding and tuition, according to data provided by ASA’s website. During this time, the rate of spending for prisons has outpaced that of education in Arizona. According to a Department of Education report from 2016, the rate of spending for state and local prisons jumped by 303% compared to public schools. The state has continued the trend of increasing funding for prisons by allocating $1.3 billion to the Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry for the next fiscal year, as reported by The Arizona Republic. As funding for state prisons has grown, so has the cost of attending Arizona’s three public universities, according to figures from ABOR. During the 2010-11 school year, base tuition and mandatory fees for in-state undergraduate students at ASU, NAU and UArizona ranged from $7,600 to $8,000. Over the course of a decade, costs at these schools reached $11,000 to $12,700, which represented 44.7% and 58.7% increases from the lowest to and highest figures, respectively. Moreover, Nitschke said he is hopeful about the initiative passing, which would force the state legislature to allocate more money to higher education. “This initiative will force the state to allocate more money to



Spokesperson for Arizona Students’ Association Nicole Whitten speaking at First Amendment Plaza, Oct. 5. Jonah Graham | The Lumberjack

“This initiative will force the state to allocate more money to higher education.” – ASA Organizing Director Kyle Nitschke higher education,” Nitschke said. “I mean if the state has enough money to fund prisons, then they sure as hell have enough money to alleviate the burden of the high cost of tuition and fees that residents face when attending college.” NAU Young Democrats President Jacob Carter said the state has failed its promise of making education reasonably priced. Carter noted the ever-increasing in-state tuition at the three public universities make it harder for lower income and minority students to attend college. “The Arizona Constitution says that education should be ‘as nearly free as possible,’ but when you have for in-state residents a $11,000 tuition price tag with a $6,000-plus price tag for housing,” Carter said. “What this does is make getting into higher education a lot more daunting, especially for communities that are of lower income, [and for] majority minority communities, which historically do not have the resources to be able to afford massive loans or be able to apply for different scholarships.” In addition, Carter expressed that the As Nearly Free As Possible Act will make it easier for students to get advanced degrees in engineering, law and medical sciences. If passed by voters, Carter said the state will be able to have more qualified entry-level

employees joining the workforce to bolster the economy in the long run. He also said if the state is able to eliminate the possibility of resident undergraduate students taking out loans to attend college, it will lead to more money being pumped into the economy. “We see this ticket for higher education being negated by this outrageous price tag that only a certain few are able to take on — or you have to be OK with being $50,000 in debt when you graduate,” Carter said. “It’s not good for the economy when you have $200 to $300 being taken out of someone’s paycheck each month, just to pay for student loans.” During an Oct. 5 press conference announcing the ballot initiative, councilmember Adam Shimoni said he is excited to see the proposal move forward. Shimoni explained the current structure of paying for higher education will continue to discourage young adults from attending college, and in turn will affect the country’s competitiveness on a global level. “A quality of education is so important to the future of all of us, of our societies, our ability to be resilient as communities and to be competitive at the global level,” Shimoni said. “If we want to create a resilient community, we must start with quality education that is affordable and attainable that doesn’t leave students in shackles.” Nitschke said in order to have the initiative added to the ballot for the 2022 midterm elections, the ASA hopes to gather roughly 287,000 signatures. The ballot will be finalized by July 2022.


Design phase of Beulah/University roadway project concludes sophia swainson


lagstaff City Council concluded the design phase of the Beulah/University roadway project, which will extend South Beulah Boulevard and realign West University Avenue at its Oct. 5. Flagstaff City Engineer Rick Barrett and Capital Improvements Project Manager David Pedersen gave a presentation to describe the final design plans. The project involves an intersection at South Milton Road, where University Avenue is unaligned with University Drive and Beulah Boulevard. As a result of prior discussions with council and public input, emphasis was placed on changes made to the plans for pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure on the roadways. Barrett introduced the project as one that began due to issues with public safety at the intersection. “That intersection is one of the more accident-prone places in the city,” Barrett said. “We’ve known this for over 20 years.” Pedersen described the project’s design and the logistics associated with it. The former Arizona Department of Transportation office on Milton Road was relocated to allow for the continuation of West University Avenue. The new roadway

will continue University Drive, and Beulah Boulevard will be extended to connect to it and Yale Street by a roundabout. New bike and pedestrian lanes, in addition to parkway lanes for snow moved by plows, will be constructed and existing infrastructure along the roadways that are relevant to the project will be expanded. The project also involves the construction of a tunnel below Milton Road to offer bikers and pedestrians a way to cross the road without coming into contact with the intersection’s traffic. Pedersen’s presentation included a visual rendering of what the Milton Road tunnel, which will be 114 feet long, will look like once construction is finished. Vice Mayor Becky Daggett expressed concerns over whether or not pedestrians will feel safe using the tunnel. “It looks like you can see very easily to the other side,” Daggett said. “I’m wondering if that is going to be the case on the ground, because that seems like a great distance to be able to see the other side so clearly.” While Pederson confirmed the rendering was created to scale, Barrett was unable to verify that the other side of the tunnel would be as easily visible when entering, as the image depicted.

Barrett described that, despite not being able to answer Daggett’s question, he shares her concern. “We’d certainly like what we see here,” Barrett said. “We want to be able to see, before entering the tunnel, what’s in the tunnel and how far it is to get to the other end of the tunnel.” Councilmember Adam Shimoni recognized visibility as being important to address, especially in avoiding bikers and pedestrians crossing Milton Road in dangerous ways due to not wanting to use the tunnel. Solutions to the safety considerations created by the tunnel’s length were discussed, including adding video surveillance throughout the passage and livestreaming that footage at each end. “I have my comments and my critiques, but nothing is perfect,” Shimoni said. “This is pretty darn good.” Shimoni noted there has been significant progress toward resolving the issues with this intersection which has, historically, posed a safety threat to drivers, bikers and pedestrians. As the design phase of the Beulah/University roadway project is now concluded, those issues will soon be solved as construction begins in late spring of 2022.

This conceptual image shows what the pedestrian underpass will look like. Photo Courtesy of the City of Flagstaff

OCT. 14 - OCT. 20, 2021 | THE LUMBERJACK



Clouds begin to cover the San Fransisco Peaks looking toward East Copeland Lane off Highway 89, Oct. 5. Megan Ford-Fyffe | The Lumberjack




OCT. 14- OCT. 20, 2021 | THE LUMBERJACK



NAU parking sharks feeding on students' pockets John Chaffeur

Star-studded relationships are not for observation


ohn Mulaney was once stand-up comedy’s token nice guy, loved almost universally. But a stint in rehab for drug abuse and a subsequent divorce from his wife of five years contributed to his dethroning. Fans took this news, along with the revelation of a new relationship with Olivia Munn, poorly. Mulaney had been MARLEY mentioning his wife and his adoration for GREEN her in shows for years. They felt invested ASSISTANT OP-ED in his marriage, until he left his spouse for EDITOR another woman and his persona suddenly dissipated. Making matters worse, from an optical standpoint, is the couple’s confirmation of rumors they are expecting a child. The timeline is unclear — there is speculation the two relationships overlapped. The debacle has begun a heated debate among fans. Some longtime supporters felt betrayed and hurt, equating it to the feeling of parents getting a divorce. Others defended Mulaney and asserted those fans were overreacting. There’s likely a bit of truth to any perspective on Mulaney’s personal life. But at the same time, average fans couldn’t possibly know the ins and outs of either of these public relationships, and they’re even further from knowing about his addiction and how that may have affected the situation. It’s possible the marriage was on the ropes for a long time before anyone on the outside knew. This is true of nearly any celebrity scandal. As in life, these issues are not black and white. Fans don’t know what truly happened, and likely never will. Relationship troubles, and divorces, don’t necessarily transcend celebrities — nearly everyone faces them at some point. Most of the time, it’s impossible to know the first thing about the intricacies of anyone’s interpersonal relationships. For some reason, people are much better at understanding that when it comes to private citizens. Given hostile public reaction and media coverage when a celebrity’s relationship goes south, the general consensus seems to be that they are not owed that same graciousness nor privacy. I’m not saying celebrities shouldn’t face scrutiny for their decisions, as they set examples for the whole of society. Of course, their words and actions matter. Sometimes it’s hard to find compassion for them when many times, they choose to lead their lives in the spotlight. Still, their personal lives should be free of unnecessary speculation — the same respect we hope would be granted to us.




AU tuition averages about $25,000 for out-of-state students and a little over $10,000 for in-state students. Looking at these numbers, we can see two things: The price of college tuition has skyrocketed over the past decades, and the existing price of university is almost unaffordable for four or more years, depending on each student’s path. Along with this ridiculous price of tuition for students, they're responsible for covering costs of books, food, housing and other nonacademic activities. More often than not, this means students have to get a job. While some study during the week and have weekends off, a large number have to work to get their degrees — so they never truly have a day off. Still, millions of students have to decide to sign their life away by taking out loans to cover their costs. These decisions, in totality, reach almost $2 trillion. Contributing lots of money to higher education becomes overwhelmingly difficult for students, in addition to the huge time commitment and the impact of other expenditures. Adding to the disaster of debt is NAU Parking Services, which generated $6 million in revenue during the pandemic. When college was already wallet-burning, the inflated price of parking adds up. According to U.S. News, “23% of students have cars on campus,” meaning over 6,000 attendees end up paying hundreds of dollars each year for parking passes and violations. Parking on campus is costly, especially when considering the financial difficulties many students faced in the wake of the pandemic. NAU didn’t eliminate parking fees during 2020, but the city of Flagstaff supported citizens by giving free parking downtown for several months during lockdown. For instance, paying daily at San Francisco Parking Garage costs $10. If a student parks Monday through Friday, that's $50 per week, $200 monthly and roughly $1,600 for the academic year. If students pursue the alternative of getting a semester or annual parking pass, they still face a massive and unreasonable price tag in their LOUIE accounts. Annually, a permit costs between $470 and $640. Semesterly, passes range from $352 to $480, excluding evenings and night-only permits. Tickets run at about $90, and it's especially unreasonable that once fines reach $150, NAUPD could boot, impound or tow the car — after only two parking violations. Assuming each student and faculty member gets one or two parking violations during their time at NAU, and they pay for parking in some way, expenses could add up to thousands. Hypothetically, if someone doesn't have the funds to pay for their parking fines in addition to the blasphemous tuition price, they’re simply out of luck. Others may argue NAU benefits from the revenue it makes from parking, fining and towing. However, the university has put tens of millions of dollars into unfinished projects.

There are two major, costly projects that the university has worked on in recent years. The Walkup Skydome $26 million revamp took place in the early 2010s, and the Student-Athlete High Performance Center in progress that broke ground in 2020 has a receipt of $46 million. That's a whopping $72 million for something that only benefits 467 students. The school has obvious priorities that don’t concern the larger student body. If we can afford a $46 million dollar upgrade to our practice facilities on campus during a pandemic, I'm sure the university can budget to help students and faculty struggling with parking expenses. When times are tough for all, NAU should try to make improvements by creating reasonably priced parking methods for the entire school community.

Illustration By Christian Ayala


White veganism: Supremacy on a platter Kylie Soto


ave you ever taken your privilege into account when glancing in your shopping cart at the grocery store? Nothing outstretches the reach of white supremacy, which goes far beyond police brutality — not even your diet. Faunalytics, a nonprofit animal advocacy organization, conducted research on the demographics of vegetarians and summed up their findings by saying “it is skewed female, white and more educated than the population overall.” The majority of vegans are, noticeably, white women on Instagram. Now, brands are quick to hop on to the trend for the sake of making money. They hold the reins in terms of advancing the lifestyle. Considering the history of vegetarianism and veganism, this is utterly mind-boggling. The term veganism was first coined in 1944, but Time noted “the concept of flesh-avoidance can be traced back to ancient Indian and eastern Mediterranean societies.” Despite the ease of crediting white people for the creation of the trend, it was not this demographic which expanded the idea of abstaining from animal products. Time added, “Followers of Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism also advocated vegetarianism, believing that humans should not inflict pain on other animals.” Today, minorities — namely, Black Americans — can and should be recognized for popularizing the diet. A 2016 Pew Research study found that 8% of Black Americans described themselves as either vegan or vegetarian, whereas only 3% of the total population identified as vegan. But the movement doesn’t stop there: Hip-hop artists also have a hand in promoting veganism. From members of the WuTang Clan to Beyoncé, perhaps some of the most influential people are not those who are recognized; instead, a viral piece of avocado toast at brunch will get more accolades. Racial disparity doesn’t stop at police brutality — even the food we eat has history.

Illustration By Diana Ortega puts it best: “The growing trend of ‘white veganism’ perpetuates the idea that veganism goes hand-inhand with health and wealth, while erasing Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) from the conversation. The poster children of the movement — the ones with the most followers

who, in turn, work with the most brands — are often white, able-bodied people.” Some white vegans have even gone as far as to compare genocides of BIPOC to the killing of animals for food. The insensitivity is jarring. No white people have the means to compare the suffering of BIPOC to anything, no matter how passionate they may be about animal rights and environmental activism. Additionally, many white vegans fail to recognize the socioeconomic implications their actions have on matters outside the internet. A Vox article stated “The average price for a meat alternative sold in a grocers’ meat department in the US last year was $9.87/pound. The average price for beef? $4.82/pound. Chicken is even cheaper, at $2.33/ pound.” This vast difference in price prevents many people from practicing veganism, as many are concerned about the costliness of meat substitutes. Aside from this, white vegans often don’t recognize the serious human rights breaches across the globe when People of Color who work for large agricultural companies are on strike for unfair pay, benefits or worse. To top it all off, they often don’t criticize the capitalistic systems that breed unethical farming practices. The main focus I see online is on the environmental impact of the meat and dairy industry, in which white vegans explain how their black bean burger led them to an epiphany about the earth’s ozone layer. White veganism will not save the planet one Beyond Meat burger at a time. In fact, white vegans are muffling some of the most important voices: BIPOC. A lot of the progress should be credited to Indigenous people and Black Americans. Yet, we are stuck looking at a gallery of white social media influencers’ meatless brunch plates. If the world is to advance at all, the silencing must stop, along with the blatant disregard of other human rights violations.

OCT. 14- OCT. 20, 2021 | THE LUMBERJACK



Indigenous Peoples’ Day empowers tr Octavia Freeland


here are 113 Indigenous tribes represented at NAU, according to the Native American Cultural Center (NACC). At the university, Indigenous Peoples’ Day is now a celebrated holiday, but it took a long time to recognize its value. From the moment Christopher Columbus arrived in 1492, these individuals has persevered through struggle and hardship. For many tribes, lives were uprooted from that day forward, and their cultural teachings and traditions were cast away in favor of lives they did not ask for. According to Insider, 90% of the Indigenous population died from diseases that Columbus and other Europeans brought when they came to America. In 1830, per, President Andrew Jackson signed the Indian Removal Act, which relocated tribes to different lands across the western United States in order for the U.S government to use their former homes. Many Indigenous lives were lost due to the act. In 1860, Indigenous tribes were forced to send their children to boarding schools, according to The Atlantic. They had no choice but to abandon their traditional teachings and endure harsh treatment until 1978, when the last of these schools finally closed. Despite all the struggles the Indigenous community has fought and continues to face, many youth embody the resilience, strength and power their ancestors held. Freshman Soma Freeman, who is Navajo, explained that she feels valued and empowered by her tribal membership, including its matrilineal culture. Growing up, Freeman said she learned the Navajo language by attending a tribal school, but started to forget it while continuing her education, because Navajo courses were not offered at many schools. However, Freeman continues to learn and practice her people’s traditions, along with the language. Since she was a baby, Freeman has grown out her hair. A teaching that she explained as close to her heart is one she learned from her grandparents, which is to never cut hair because it represents one’s knowledge. Additionally, she said butchering sheep with her family one of her favorite cultural activities. Freeman explained there is a lot of misrepresentation of Indigenous people; for instance, that they are homeless or alcoholics,


“T’áá hwó ají t’éego” ‘only you can do it yourself.’” – Senior Vernandria Livingston’s favorite navajo phrase

Illustration By Tonesha Yazzie



ribes following years of oppression which she said is inaccurate. Another misconception is that Columbus discovered the U.S. “People say Columbus discovered America, but you can’t really say that because Indigenous people were here first,” Freeman said. “And [Indigenous tribes] were the ones who invited [Columbus and Europeans] over into this world, because we could have done something entirely different than how it was. But we didn’t; we were more friendly and Columbus was just basically like ‘Whatever, we’re just going to take over your land and make it ours.’” Senior Massai Gonzalez, part of the Mexica tribe commonly known as Aztecs, continues to practice many cultural teachings while being away from his people, who are located in Mexico City. In order to keep his culture alive, Gonzalez said he uses the practices taught by his grandparents and parents. Cultural dances are his way of life, Gonzalez explained, and a source of guidance through everything he does. A phrase Gonzalez said he values in his language is “Mexica Taihui,” which translates into “to keep on moving forward.” Despite hard times, people can persist. Gonzalez explained that, to him, being Indigenous means a responsibility to preserve Mother Nature. By doing so, Indigenous people are also protecting their identity. He added that one is able to survive, adapt and persist by conserving nature. Similar to Freeman, Gonzalez noted that Columbus inflicted pain and is still causing suffering to many Indigenous communities — so he does not participate in Columbus Day. Gonzalez explained that its celebration is offensive and ignorant of Indigenous history. However, Indigenous Peoples’ Day has received recognition within the last few years, and the city passed it as an official holiday in 2018. “I feel like it’s a good step to making these histories known,” Gonzalez said of the holiday. “[We] continue to suffer and we continue to resist colonial powers even today. We might not see it, but the governments are still after us, and they still don’t want us to succeed. Our communities have high rates of suicide, alcoholism and drug usage — these are all problems that colonialism has caused. “[Colonialists] have driven us away from our traditional lifestyles that kept us healthy, that kept our community safe,” Gonzalez

added. “And now we have to deal with all these hardships. … Slowly, we’re continuing to make that change and try[ing] to go back to our traditional lifestyle as best as we can.” Senior Vernandria Livingston is a member of the Navajo tribe, and she explained the importance of sharing traditions through her peers and Navajo classes. However, Livingston said she did not have the opportunity to learn from her elders while growing up, which impacted her knowledge of traditions. Navajo teachings are deeply rooted in the elders, because they hold all the stories to pass on to their children and grandchildren. Livingston shared her favorite phrase in the Navajo language — “T’áá hwó ají t’éego” — which can be translated to “only you can do it yourself.” She explained this phrase as showing responsibility for an individual’s decisions and growth, because the path they choose is up to them and no one else. The phrase is a motivator for Livingston while in college, and she explained doing good for herself can do good for others. She also works as a peer mentor at the NACC, which includes helping Indigenous students. One of the reasons she became a peer mentor, Livingston said, was to help these students navigate their first year of college. Livingston said working at the NACC has contributed to her efforts to learn her language and culture by connecting with other Navajo staff, who help in teaching her this history. “Being Indigenous to me personally is empowering, because it’s a reminder that through all the historical trauma and all the oppression that we face — then and now — it’s a reminder that we’re not supposed to be here, but we are,” Livingston said. ”It’s about being connected to your culture and your clan and your people. It’s having an obligation to your people to go back and help them in any way that you can, whether it is through education or work.” The Indigenous people embrace their struggles and continue to fight for their culture through big and small measures. As they navigate a world that suppressed their ancestors, and a society that continues to stigmatize them, this group is fighting to protect and continue its traditions. The strength this community has shown through its history truly expresses how empowering it can be to be Indigenous.

OCT. 14 - OCT. 20, 2021 | THE LUMBERJACK



Health Care Theater classes test out nursing students Jalyn Knight


hile NAU’s Department of Theatre and School of Nursing may seem like an odd combination at first, the university recently created a program that encourages them to use distinct abilities and aid one another in learning. For the first time, students in these programs will exercise their skills while working together in educational roleplays. Theater students will act out various diseases and illnesses, while health care students work to diagnose their theater “patients” through the new Health Care Theater class. Within the School of Nursing, NAU offers students the weekly opportunity to engage in clinical coursework. This work entails students getting firsthand practice within professional health care locations. Throughout these clinicals, students are able to observe medical practices and conduct minor procedures, as well as basic patient care. With the new Health Care Theater class, the opportunity exists for nursing students to encounter a diverse range of diseases demonstrated by real people, rather than mannequins. Though the actors are technically healthy, they provide crucial practice for health care students, which they appreciate. Students in the health care program are able to gain experience in identifying diseases and illnesses. They also have access to advanced resources designed to promote learning and provide hands-on experience. One such resource is a Sim, also known by students as a SimMan. According to the manufacturer,

Illustration By Jessie Siemens


Laerdal Corporation, the Sim is an advanced training mannequin that creates a safe and riskfree learning environment. The mannequin can blink, simulate breathing and replicate heart sounds — it even has a voice. Junior nursing student Genevieve Standifer explained the importance of receiving more opportunities to practice while getting an education in health care. Standifer partakes in several labs each semester, in addition to attending her weekly clinical training. However, she said she believes the new program is a great way to gain even more preparation for her demanding profession. “Learning how to interact with real patients in a clinical setting takes time and experience,” Standifer said. “We would get to practice listening to and seeing the differences in different people; everybody is different, and seeing that helps.” While nursing students take labs with the SimMan seriously, some expect situations acted by real people to be even more intense. Problem-solving for students is the same in both simulations, yet treating a real human cannot be fully comprehended when using an advanced mannequin. Standifer said she suspects seeing the reactions on a real face will hold more weight. “We have to act like real nurses and problem-solve without the help of someone who is a nurse,” Standifer said. “With real patients you could actually do some harm, depending on what skills are being practiced; making mistakes is a given, [and] we do labs so we can make mistakes and learn from them.” Nursing students are not the only group to benefit from the Health Care Theater class, however. The implementation of this coursework opens the door for many in the Department of Theatre to practice the process of portraying their character as a patient with an illness. Junior Asher Robinson is studying theater with an emphasis on theater studies. He said the new program provides valuable experiences, while proving that acting and theater can be applied to help outside the stage. Robinson explained his excitement for the science and art programs coming together to benefit other people. “I think it’s a good experience, having to know so much about your character,”


Robinson said. “I think it will help me be able to flesh out my characters realistically in plays that I write or act in, and to get that training right now opens a lot of avenues.” The Health Care Theater class is designed to help students understand their respective studies and enact scenarios in a back-and-forth way. The student acting as the patient will present their case, while a nursing student must utilize their knowledge to respond, Robinson said. He also explained theater students react accordingly to the care provided; here, a deep comprehension of the character is needed to respond with the correct feedback — whether positive or negative. Robinson expanded on this idea by comparing the interaction to a “play.” Each scenario carries a guideline and plot, wherein theater students must be able to interact based on the choices made in their treatment. “Improv is a huge part of the simulation,” Robinson said. “If a nurse does something poorly, the character would react differently than if the nurse does something as they’re supposed to. Every simulation will be different depending on who is involved, but it’s a realistic performance that prepares [health care students].” One theme is giving students the tool of experience, which they may take into future endeavors, whether academic and professional. Through the process of practice, skills are developed and refined. These scenarios are not expected to flow perfectly, as Standifer expressed that mistakes are part of the learning process. However, they allow students to strengthen the skills already possessed, on both the acting and nursing sides. Junior Kelsey Brown is a theater major with an emphasis in performance, and she said she looks forward to the start of the program, along with the opportunity to be a performer. Brown explained her belief that the entire process — from planning to performance to assessment — will prove beneficial to her learning, and in turn aid in her professional development. “A lot of creative freedom comes with the opportunity to do this — we don’t have specific lines, and it really is just imagining and understanding your character and backstory,” Brown said. “Simulations actually continue in the professional world, and with the experience we gain we can continue to do [them].” Brown said through improvisation, as well as the time and research theater students put into their performances, this group will receive better insight into professional roles. Additionally, Brown said the acting of theater students will hopefully make their nursing counterparts more

comfortable as they similarly prepare to enter the workforce. “I’m just excited to actually do the simulation and have the experience and tools under my belt,” Brown said. “It’s awesome being able to collaborate with [nursing students], especially because we never really had a relationship between our departments until now.” Brown and other theater students, along with some in the School of Nursing, have already started preparations for their first performances. Meanwhile, some students recently completed their first simulations on Oct. 6. The early stages of the program led to an overall feeling of excitement for most participants. For the remainder of the academic year and well into the future, theater and nursing students will continue to work through their respective skills as a team. Although an uncommon collaboration, students from both programs look forward to working with one another for betterment as a whole. Hard work on both ends will make for an uncommon, but interesting, beginning of a program students will continue to look forward to on campus.

“A lot of creative freedom comes with the opportunity to do this — we don’t have specific lines, and it really is just imagining and understanding your character and backstory. Simulations actually continue in the professional world, and with the experience we gain we can continue to do [them].” –Junior Kelsey Brown


OCT. 14 - OCT. 20, 2021 | THE LUMBERJACK



What if Tom Holland is the only Spider-Man in ‘No Way Home?’


he film “Spider-Man: No Way Home” is potentially the most anticipated release of 2021. This is due, in large part, to the general belief — despite numerous denials by those involved — that all three live-action Spider-Men will appear together in the film. Spidey fans have been in a tizzy since rumors started swirling about Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield joining the cast of Marvel Studios’ latest Spider-Man flick. Among others rumored to KODY appear are Kirsten Dunst, Emma Stone and Jamie MALOUF Foxx, each reprising their roles from their respective corners of the Spider-Verse. WRITER The first trailer for Spidey’s latest big-screen outing was released Aug. 23, confirming the return of Alfred Molina’s Doctor Octopus and Willem Dafoe as the Green Goblin. Both villains are crossing over from the Sam Raimi trilogy, which should mean that Maguire and Garfield aren’t far behind, yet inquiries are still being met with outright denials. Garfield denied being in the film during an interview on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” on Sept. 13, claiming that a leaked video allegedly showing him on the Spider-Man set was photoshopped. Garfield’s acting is pretty good in the interview, but the video in question was confirmed as authentic, meaning that our second Spidey is playing the short game and denying everything before he’s finally able to talk about it. Maguire has been silent since rumors about his casting sprang up, not doing interviews or press of any kind, continuing his half-decade of basic nonexistence in the public eye. Garfield’s denial shouldn’t come as a great shock, as the Marvel marketing team has made a living off keeping anyone not named Mark Ruffalo or Tom Holland in check when it comes to spoilers. It wouldn’t surprise me if Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige was sitting right off screen during Garfield’s Zoom interview with a contract in one hand and a weapon in the other. To quote Christian Bale’s Bruce Wayne, they’re playing this one pretty close to the chest. This is what Marvel does: Lie, and a lot. The entertainment company is known for omitting the truth, or flat out lying to fans in order to keep a surprise intact. In 2018, leading up to the announcement of the thenuntitled “Avengers 4,” fans flooded the internet with guesses as to what the title of the latest Avengers movie could be. One of the most popular ideas was “Endgame,” stemming from Doctor Strange’s use of the term in the closing moments of “Infinity War.” Feige outright denied that “Endgame” was the film’s title, only to reveal that the film would in fact be titled “Avengers: Endgame” some time later. Marvel has also been known to digitally add or remove characters and key story elements from trailers in order to keep fans on their toes, so don’t be surprised if some scenes from the “No Way Home” trailer are different in the context of the film, such as adding another Spidey or two. Continue reading on



Oct. 4-9: Spinoffs galore and the BET Hip-Hop Awards Katelyn Rodriguez

Recent releases:

“MAMMAMIA” by Maneskin (single) Top five stories of the week: 1. Singer Adele announced her return Oct. 5 via “Boyz” by Jesy Nelson featuring Nicki Minaj (single) Instagram and Twitter, in which she revealed her new single “Easy On Me” — released Oct. 15. “Ghost” by Justin Bieber (music video) 2. R&B duo Silk Sonic, which consists of Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak, revealed their debut album, “Friends That Break Your Heart” by James Blake “An Evening with Silk Sonic,” will be released Nov. 12 (album) via an Instagram post. 3. According to Deadline Hollywood, actors “Justice (The Complete Edition)” by Justin Bieber Kurtwood Smith and Debra Jo Rupp are set to star in Netflix’s spinoff series of “That 70s Show,” which will be (album) called “That 90s Show.” The actors will reprise their roles “Colors” by Lauren Jauregui (single) of Red and Kitty Foreman. 4. According to Variety, there’s a “WandaVision” “No Time to Die” (in theaters) spinoff series in the works at Disney+ that will star Kathryn Hahn’s character Agatha Harkness. “The Manor (Welcome to the Blumhouse)” (in theaters) 5. On Sunday, actor Timothée Chalamet posted the first look of himself as Willy Wonka in the upcoming prequel film “Wonka” on Instagram and Twitter. Top 15 charting songs: 1. “My Universe” by Coldplay featuring BTS Award show update: BET Hip-Hop Awards 2. “Stay” by The Kid LAROI featuring Justin Bieber 3. “INDUSTRY BABY” by Lil Nas X featuring Hip-hop album of the year: “Call Me If You Get Jack Harlow Lost” by Tyler, the Creator 4. “Way 2 Sexy” by Drake featuring Future and Young Thug Song of the year: “WAP” by Cardi B featuring 5. “Fancy Like” by Walker Hayes Megan Thee Stallion 6. “Bad Habits” by Ed Sheeran 7. “good 4 u” by Olivia Rodrigo Hip-hop artist of the year: Lil Baby 8. “Kiss Me More” by Doja Cat featuring SZA 9. “Knife Talk” by Drake featuring 21 Savage and Best hip-hop video: “WAP” by Cardi B featuring Project Pat Megan Thee Stallion 10. “Levitating” by Dua Lipa 11. “Essence” by Wizkid featuring Justin Bieber Best new hip-hop artist: Yung Bleu and Tems 12. “Save Your Tears” by The Weeknd featuring Best collaboration: “WAP” by Cardi B featuring Ariana Grande Megan Thee Stallion 13. “MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)” by Lil Nas X A full list of winners can be found on BET’s website. 14. “Shivers” by Ed Sheeran 15. “Heat Waves” by Glass Animals Song data from Billboard’s The Hot 100 Chart


Photo courtesy of the NAU Lumberjack Activities Board

The All American Haunting summons the Halloween spirit Emily Rehling


he spirit for all things scary is in the air, as Halloween creeps closer. NAU’s Lumberjack Activities Board (LAB) is bringing everything spooky to set the atmosphere for the scariest night of the year. The All American Haunting event on Oct. 9 at Prochnow Auditorium marked the first of many chilling events organized by LAB. Presented by performers Anthem and Aria Flint, also known as the Psychic Soulmates, the Haunting included a theatrical seance filled with eerie happenings and illusions. The partners welcomed attendees to join them at the seance table as they contacted the spirits — an aspect Anthem said was important to include in order for their audience to feel an attachment to one other and with the performance. “Not only did all these people connect over this, but it also gives them something to talk about,” Anthem said. “We exclude ourselves from [people who are different from us] but really, that’s depriving ourselves of something, right?” Anthem explained the performance allowed the audience to focus on the collective experience rather than what makes them

different from each other. He highlighted it as a unifying human experience. Although real spirits are not summoned during the performance, the eerie illusions conducted by Anthem and Aria may have been enough to spook even the strongest of skeptics. Attendees were eager to participate, with many students volunteering to sit at the table. Even more audience members volunteered from their seats with questions about the other side, which were answered through Anthem and Aria’s conjuring abilities. Throughout the show, the Psychic Soulmates utilized the help of their spirit guide, who they said was the ghost of a famous 10-year-old medium named Teddy. Anthem and Aria told the audience they had connected the night they first summoned Teddy, and he had been their guide ever since. While Teddy was not visible to the audience, Anthem followed his presence through the crowd as Aria stayed blindfolded on stage for a mind-reading illusion. Anthem approached audience members Teddy was interested in, and Aria described what they were holding. Each time, she was correct. At one point, Aria read aloud the serial number of a dollar bill held by an audience member, naming each digit precisely as it was printed on the bill.

The Flints have worked together for nearly eight years, but their love of all things supernatural is something they described as lifelong. Anthem said he has been intrigued by magic and mind-reading since the age of 5, a sentiment Aria echoed. “I can’t really explain it; I’ve just always loved the weird, spooky part of life,” Aria said. “I don’t know if there was ever a moment where I was like, ‘I now like spooky things!’ I think it’s just always been that way.” Anthem explained that their shared interest in performing arts, as well as their psychic abilities, sparked the idea for their performances. “There’s always more curiosity,” Anthem said. “The more I studied magic and illusion, the more I realized that much of the spiritual phenomenon around us is actually from our minds that we projected out to cause that to happen. But [Aria] was the thing that opened my mind the most.” While the performance was not too frightening, there were absolutely moments that could make one’s blood run cold. At one point, the audience screamed in terror as a spectral face appeared onstage for a brief moment. This theatrical approach to their psychic engagement proved to be quite popular, as evident by the raucous applause at the end of the

evening. The electric audience excitedly chatted the entire time exiting through the lobby, where a member of Anthem and Aria’s team conducted tarot readings for curious guests. LAB Event Coordinator Joy Johnson said the evening was hosted to get people into the Halloween spirit. She also clarified there were not, in fact, any real ghosts. “We really wanted to bring the scare,” Johnson said. “We just wanted to have a more, like, not horror, but spookier than normal thing going on.” Johnson said the All American Haunting was the first of a series of Halloween- themed events for students to enjoy. Although unconfirmed, she said LAB will likely host an annual fall dance called RainBoo, in addition to Fall Fest. Johnson said LAB is hoping for the latter to include a corn maze, s’mores and scary stories. Whether or not one believes in the paranormal, or the ability to reach the other side, the All American Haunting allowed attendees to explore the creepy side of life in time for Halloween. After Saturday’s seance, one can be sure that spooky season is in full swing at NAU.

OCT. 14 2021 – OCT. 20, 2021 | THE LUMBERJACK






Fall Foliage Across Campus

Page 16 Top: Students commute to class during an afternoon rainstorm, Oct. 5. Page 16 Bottom Left: A view of the San Fransisco Peaks from the NAU campus during an afternoon rainstorm, Oct. 5. Page 16 Bottom Right: A wall of ivy begins to turn red and orange near the Physical Sciences Building, Oct. 5. Page 17: A student walks alongside the Knoles Drive Parking Garage after a rainstorm cleared through campus, Oct. 5. Brian Burke | The Lumberjack

OCT. 14 2021 – OCT. 20, 2021 | THE LUMBERJACK



Blue and Gold in action A kicker is the 2021 Cardinals’ top addition


here are some luxuries a NFL team and its fans may not appreciate until they don’t have them. High on the list? A reliable kicker. Big games are often won and lost on field goal attempts. Think Chicago’s Cody Parkey and his double-doink off the upright against the Philadelphia Eagles in the 2018 playoffs, or seemingly every MICHAEL Minnesota Vikings playoff loss. MANNY The Arizona Cardinals have known this reality all too well. The team had WRITER stability at the position with Neil Rackers and Jay Feely from 2003-2013, but from 2016-2020, the kicking situation shifted back-and-forth from average to disastrous. The team was expected to take strides toward ending its playoff drought last year, in quarterback Kyler Murray’s second season, especially with the addition of superstar wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins. One of the reasons they collapsed to an 8-8 record after a 5-3 start? The play of kicker Zane Gonzalez. Gonzalez was 16-of-22 on field goals last season (72.7%). Those numbers were average, but what made them worse was the timing of the misses. Gonzalez missed potential game-winning kicks against the Seattle Seahawks, Miami Dolphins and New England Patriots. He was able to redeem himself against Seattle, but only after an interception by then-rookie linebacker Isaiah Simmons in overtime. With third-year kicker Chandler Catanzaro, Arizona’s 2016 season was much of the same story, and none of his misses were more memorable than a missed chip-shot in a 6-6 tie vs. Seattle. This history is exactly why kicker Matt Prater is the Cardinals’ best signing of 2021. Formerly on the Denver Broncos and Detriot Lions, Prater has one of the strongest legs in the business. Until recently, he held the record for the longest field goal in NFL history: 64 yards for the Broncos in 2013. Plus, he holds the Lions, and now the Cardinals’, franchise records in longest kicks, with 59 and 62 yarders, respectively. Kicks past 50 yards aren’t automatic, but for Prater, they’re a specialty. Last season with the Lions, he broke the league record for most career field goals of 50-plus yards with 59. Against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 3, Prater attempted and came up a few yards short on a 68-yard field goal. The kick was returned 109 yards for a score, but the fact that it was attempted at all is a testament to Prater’s ability. With the Cardinals starting 5-0 for the first time since 1974, which was also the last time they were the lone unbeaten team, the franchise finally has a kicker who can win big games in January and beyond.



Recent game scores Volleyball NAU @ Sacramento State Thursday, Oct 7, 7 p.m. Final: (W) NAU 3 - SAC State 0 NAU @ Portland State Saturday, Oct 9, 7 p.m. Final: (L) NAU 1 - POrtland State 3

Soccer NAU vs Weber State Friday, Oct 8, 7 p.m. Final: (W) NAU 4 - WEBER State 1 NAU vs Idaho State Sunday, Oct 10, 1 p.m. Final: (w) NAU 2 - Idaho State 0

Upcoming games Volleyball

NAU vs Idaho State Thursday, Oct. 14, 6:30 p.m. (Rolle Activity Center) NAU vs Weber State Saturday, Oct 16, 6 p.m. (Rolle Activity Center)


NAU vs Southern Utah Sunday, Oct 17, 1 p.m. (Lumberjack Stadium)


NAU vs Southern Utah Saturday, Oct 16, 1 p.m. (Walkup Skydome)

The Lumberjacks sing the NAU Fight Song after winning 48-17 against Idaho State at Walkup Skydome, Oct. 2. Brian Burke | The Lumberjack


NAU soccer on three-match winning streak after Idaho State shutout Brenden Martin


fter a slow first half, NAU soccer was able to put together a few goals in the second half to defeat the Idaho State Bengals, 2-0, on Oct. 10. After a dominant 4-1 win over Weber State two days prior, the Lumberjacks were primed and ready to finally get on a hot streak after a less-than-ideal start to conference play. The first half was defined by the numerous offsides calls on NAU. Not even a minute in, senior forward Madison Montgomery was called offsides after running by defenders and getting the ball on what would have been a good chance to score early, had the play continued. Within the first 10 minutes, NAU had three offsides calls against them. “Honestly it’s hard for me to tell because I’m at center field — so I can never see — but I think it’s from a starting point scenario, and I think our players just aren’t getting in a better starting point,” NAU head coach Kylie Louw said of the offsides calls. “We did talk about it in the second half, and I thought that there were less offsides.” The Lumberjacks did seem to get a grasp on the issue after halftime, since only four of the team’s 11 offsides calls came in the second half. “I do think it was fair,” senior forward Kylie Kapustka said about the officiating. “I think we just need to be a little more disciplined. I mean, refs are going to call some good calls and they’re going to call some bad calls, so it’s just kind of rolling with the punches, having discipline and respecting the refs.” Despite the modest and respectful approach the players walked away with after winning the game, the feelings may have been different in the heat of a tied match. While the score at halftime was 0-0, the Lumberjacks had possession for almost the entire time. NAU managed to take 11 shots in the first half, with six of them on goal. Idaho State freshman goalkeeper McKayla Wetsel had her work cut out for her, but throughout the match, she saved 12 of 14 shots on goal. NAU’s best chance to score in the first half was in the 24th minute, when a shot from senior forward Sam Larberg went off the right post and back to Wetsel. Though only 20 seconds in, the second half already had more action than the first. Idaho State started with the ball and the team looked to pass back to its defenders. However, Montgomery came out of nowhere, intercepting the ball on a bad touch by freshman center back Bella Anderson. With Montgomery in possession and heading toward the goal, Anderson grabbed her from behind before Montgomery could get a shot off, just as she was entering the box. After officials deliberated, Anderson was given a red card and ejected from the game, allowing Montgomery a penalty kick. However, Montgomery’s attempt was blocked by Wetsel. After deflecting the kick, she quickly got up and jumped on it, giving the Bengals a reprieve. Idaho State could not rest easy, however, as the team was now down a player for the first time this season. NAU, already leading the possession battle, now had an even greater opportunity to score. After a few more shots handled by Wetsel, the Lumberjacks finally got on the scoreboard after a shot by Larberg was deflected up in the air, but she beat the goalkeeper back to the ball and sent

Graduate student midfielder Mikhail Johnson (17) focuses to win possession at Max Spilsbury Field at Lumberjack Stadium Oct. 10. Brian Burke| The Lumberjack

it through the net. “In the first 10 minutes, we said we were going to put this game away,” Larberg said about the fast pace her team played in the second half. The loss of a defender continued to hurt the Bengals just minutes after the penalty. Just over four minutes after Larberg’s fifth goal of the season, Kapustka sent a shot from the far-right corner of the goal box over Wetsel, who had no chance to save it at the 67th-minute mark. “It was a good team goal,” Kapustka said about the quick score. “Our movement, winning the ball back right away, finding each other and ultimately getting the ball in the back of the net was just such a rewarding feeling and so much fun to know that we came out on this Sunday and we got a W out of it.” NAU continued to push the momentum on Idaho State even after its two goals. The Lumberjacks attempted 12 total secondhalf shots, one more than the first half, to reach 23 in total. Idaho State only had two shots and none until the 83rd minute by freshman outside back Maddie Bean. Two minutes later, freshman forward Deborah Pond attempted Idaho State’s only shot on goal, which was saved by freshman goalkeeper Natalie Manzo — her only save in her third career shutout. With 3:51 left in the match, the intensity was remarkably high for a game that was pretty much decided. Larberg set up a potential shot in the box, putting the ball on a collision course between Wetsel and sophomore winger Victoria Pucci. The two collided when Wetsel dove for the ball, resulting in Pucci tripping over her and hitting the ground hard.

Officials stopped the game to allow trainers to attend to Pucci for a significant amount of time. They were able to help her up, but she couldn’t put an ounce of weight on her left ankle. Pucci was placed on the injury table to be examined more thoroughly, though she was clearly in pain. Even after the game, she remained on the table and required crutches to walk off the field. “I thought she had made a really tough tackle to try and score a goal,” Louw said about the play that led to Pucci’s injury. “We’re going to get her evaluated; it’s hard to say right now, but she’s obviously in some pain. So we’ll probably have some more answers in the next coming days.” NAU (5-10, 3-3 Big Sky) is currently on a three-game winning streak, the longest of the season. The Lumberjacks moved to fifth in the Big Sky standings and will look to improve with just three games left in the regular season. Idaho State (1-131, 1-4 Big Sky) is ninth in the 10-team conference. The Lumberjacks will have a week off before they play against the last-place Southern Utah Thunderbirds (1-12-1, 0-4-1 Big Sky) at Lumberjack Stadium on Oct. 17 at 1 p.m. All three of NAU’s remaining games are against teams behind it in the standings, making the battle for the finals spots in the Big Sky Tournament next month all the more dramatic.

OCT. 14 - 0CT. 20, 2021 | THE LUMBERJACK



NAU looks to use bye week as a tim Evan Mcnelia


AU got its second win of the season on Oct. 2, moving to 1-1 in conference play heading into the team’s bye week. The Lumberjacks put up a season-high 649 yards on offense, absolutely exploding after finding their rhythm in a big way. “We kind of dug ourselves a hole the first game, but we bounced back,” redshirt junior safety Morgan Vest said. “Coach [Chris] Ball’s message to us last week was to respond, and I feel like we really did that.” Freshman quarterback RJ Martinez was awarded his first Big Sky Offensive Player of the Week for his efforts in the win over Idaho State. Martinez completed 26 passes on 45 attempts, good for 369 yards and three touchdowns, and he also tacked on 57 rushing yards — including a 41-yard scramble for a score. With both of NAU’s wins this season coming with Martinez under center, it is hard not to get excited about his potential. After the offense seemingly found its footing last game, it will be important to see how players respond coming off their rest week. On the defensive side of the ball, Vest received Player of the Week honors for his two-interception performance against Idaho State. He also added two tackles to his stat line, bringing his season total to 42, the fifth-most in the conference. Vest’s two interceptions have him tied for second in the conference early in the season. “Obviously, my parents were excited,” Vest said. “My grandparents called and congratulated me, but other than that, I guess it’s a great award and I appreciate it. But at the same time we’re still looking to get better and improve every week, so that’s where my focus has been this week.” Graduate linebacker Harrison Beemiller has been another pivotal leader on NAU’s defense as he received a Player of the Week award of his own for his efforts against UArizona. Beemiller ranks sixth in the conference with 7.5 tackles for loss, and his total of 30 tackles on the year puts him at 20th in the conference. He also has a forced fumble. On the defensive line, NAU graduate student Carson Taylor has been the man. With four sacks on the year, Taylor leads the team and ranks fifth in the conference at getting to the quarterback. His seven tackles for loss are good for eighth in the conference, joining Beemiller in the top 10 of that category. He also has a forced fumble to his credit early in the season. As a defensive unit, NAU faced stout competition through the early stages of the season. In their first two games, the Lumberjacks gave up 42 and 34 points and lost both games. However, over the last three games, the team has not allowed an opponent to reach 20 points, posting a 2-1 record over that stretch. The Lumberjacks held Northern Colorado and Idaho State to 17 points each, and UArizona to 19 points. NAU’s defense is currently ranked sixth in the conference in points allowed per game, and it continues to rise after more stellar performances. In terms of yardage, the defense currently ranks fourth against the rush and seventh against the pass, and its six interceptions are fourth-best in the conference. However, the squad has struggled


Redshirt freshman quarterback Jeff Widener’s (9) helmet sits on the turf after a tackle by Sam Houston State University, Sept. 2. Jonah Graham | The Lumberjack

to get to opposing teams’ quarterbacks with only nine sacks on the year, pushing it into the bottom four of the conference in that category. “I think we really just started playing for each other,” Vest said. “We love playing next to each other, we really gelled. We really just simplified everything and made it our mantra to play harder and want it more. I think you can see that in our effort in the performances we’ve been putting together.” On special teams, graduate student and All-American kicker Luis Aguilar has hit a slump early in the season, making just four of his nine field-goal attempts through the first five weeks. Aguilar is 10-of-11 on PATs, however, and his only miss came Oct. 2 in the win against Idaho State. Getting a little more consistency from Aguilar would go a long way in helping this NAU offense down the stretch. Graduate student and All-American punter DJ Arnson has been a bright spot for this squad early on. He was NAU’s other recipient of Big Sky Player of the Week for his role in the win against UArizona. With 32 punts on the year, Arnson is averaging 45.9 yards per punt and has moved 1,469 yards of field position, the most yardage of anyone in the Big Sky. He also hit nine punts over 50 yards, tied for most in the conference. His 11 punts downed inside the 20 are the second most in the Big Sky, and he only has three touchbacks. To say he has been a force in the special teams game would be an understatement. Football teams live and die with field


position, and Arnson has been one of the most consistent punters in college football in flipping the field for NAU’s defense. The Lumberjacks’ offensive inconsistencies have been their kryptonite in the early days of the season, with the lowlight being a 10-point outing in a defensive battle against Northern Colorado that saw them come up short on a fourth-and-1 in overtime. Against Idaho State, NAU bounced back from the poor performance, and the focus will be on replicating that success coming out of the bye week and moving toward the rest of the season. NAU’s offense currently ranks in the bottom four in the conference in points per game, with an average of just 20.4. However, the Lumberjacks rank sixth in the conference in both passing and rushing yards, and the offense ranks fifth in yards overall. NAU has been able to move the ball, but has struggled to turn possessions into points with kicking inconsistencies and turnovers. However, after last game’s offensive explosion, it will be interesting to see if this offense has officially clicked going forward. “It was great to see the offense start clicking,” Vest said. “It all works together: The defense gets off the field more, we get the offense more chances to score and the more the offense scores the easier our job becomes. I think both sides of the ball worked extremely well together in the last game. If we can keep it up, I think it’s a really deadly combination, and I think we’re capable of doing that.”


me to lock in before Southern Utah

Freshman running back Kevin Daniels (22) rushes against Idaho State at Walkup Skydome, Oct. 2. Brian Burke | The Lumberjack

Freshman running back Kevin Daniels has been a bit of a surprise breakout for NAU. He currently ranks fouth in the conference with 335 rushing yards, averaging 4.9 yards per carry. He has one rushing touchdown and four receptions for 22 yards. At 6-foot-2 and 225 pounds, Daniels is built for this NAU offense, but he only accounts for 33% of the team’s carries with other talent in the backfield. Fans were also introduced to freshman running back Draycen Hall in the shortened spring season. Hall leads running backs in receptions with 18 for 138, as well as 104 on the ground, but has yet to find the end zone this season. With his versatility in the rushing and passing games, Hall could find himself playing more snaps later in the season. As a unit, NAU’s group of wide receivers has caught the ball pretty evenly. Redshirt sophomore Jamal Glaspie has 17 catches for 210 yards and a touchdown. Meanwhile, redshirt freshman

Coleman Owen has 16 catches, leads the team with 272 yards and has also posted two touchdowns. Sophomore Hendrix Johnson has recorded 13 catches for 189 yards and also has two touchdown grabs. Graduate student Stacy Chukwumezie, who has been a year in, year out team leader, suffered an injury Week 4 against Northern Colorado and missed last week’s game, but had 16 receptions for 213 yards and a touchdown beforehand. NAU has a number of players who can get the job done in the receiving game, along with a lot of young weapons who should be threats for years to come. For NAU, consistency and effort are going to be key in whether or not it pulls out wins through these final six games. Coming off a big win and bye week, the Lumberjacks can enjoy that victory, focus on the things that went well, fix whatever did not and continue building on those successes. “Both a personal goal for me and a team goal is to win the

Big Sky,” Vest said. “We’ve said that since [head coach] Ball has been here; we are going to win the Big Sky, and we all truly believe that.” The Lumberjacks continue their run toward the Big Sky title next Saturday against Southern Utah in NAU’s homecoming game. Sitting at 2-3 overall and 1-1 in the Big Sky, conference games round out the remaining schedule for NAU. The Lumberjacks will face Southern Utah Oct. 16 for their Homecoming game; Sacramento State Oct. 23; Idaho on Oct. 30; UC Davis on Nov. 6 for its Native American Heritage Game; Montana on Nov. 13 for Senior Day; and conclude with Cal Poly on Nov. 20.

OCT. 14 - 0CT. 20, 2021 | THE LUMBERJACK




Millions discover their favorite reads on issuu every month.

Give your content the digital home it deserves. Get it to any device in seconds.