Photographer Battle of the Voices speaks replaces on Spring ShroudConcert of Turin pg. 3 4
Subway removes chemical from bread pg. 5
SJU celebrates St. Patrick’s Day pg. 4
THERE WAS A BAR ON CAMPUS?
ALUMNI RECALL HANGING AT ‘THE RAT’ PG. 8 TORCH PHOTO/THE VINCENTIAN
Photo of the Week
Managing Board XCI
Kieran Lynch, Editor-in-Chief
Mitchell Petit-Frere, Managing Editor Shannon Luibrand Features Editor Natalie Hallak Chief Copy Editor Kyle Fitzgerald Online Editor Jenny Chen Asst. Chief Copy Editor
Samantha albanese Entertainment Editor Diana Colapietro Photo Editor
Olivia Cunningham Asst. Features Editor
Stephen Zitolo Asst. Sports Editor
Briawnna Jones Asst. Entertainment Editor
Angelica King Advertising Manager
Gina Palermo Designer
Edward Warrick Asst. Art Director
Advisor Talia Tirella Asst. News Editor
Christopher Brito News Editor Jon Perez Sports Editor diamond watts-walker Art Director Alexa Vagelatos Asst. News Editor
Directory Advertising (718)-9906756 Business 990-6756 Editorial Board 990-6444
Features 990-6445 News 990-6444 Opinion 990-6445 Sports 990-6444
Students march together down 5th Avenue in the 253rd annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Manhattan.
© 2014 Ernst & Young LLP. All Rights Reserved. ED None.
Calculated net present values. Then netted a 10-pounder.
“Last month, I joined a team in San Francisco to start working on a Silicon Valley project. Come to find out, a few of the clients share my passion for fly-fishing. And some of the best in the world is just a short drive into the Northern Sierras. Needless to say, when we head out on weekends, we take the phrase ‘Gone Fishing’ to a whole new level.” See every amazing angle at exceptionalEY.com.
Concert switched for Battle of the Voices
Dr. Geiger and committee look to accomodate budget and student diversity CHRISTOPHER BRITO News Editor A modified version of the Spring Week festivities will take place in late April due to lack of funding, according to Dr. Douglas Geiger, associate vice president of student affairs. “We wanted the spring event that had traditionally been the Spring Concert to be an entertainment event that would be appealing to the campus community,” Geiger said in an interview with the Torch. “We also realized that the budget had lots of budgetary obligations.” SGI Floor approved the allocation of the remaining balance of the $50,000 dedicated to concert purposes to fund the Battle of the Voices, Earth Day, Campus Movie Festival and the Fashion Show, pending further details about events and further costs, according to SGI Secretary Oscar Diaz. Diaz said that after last year’s Spring Concert, which featured rap artists Pusha T, Ab-Soul and Trindad James, and singer Jhene Aiko, there was a motion to form a concert committee structure to ensure that the concert will be catering as many students as possible. Diaz
also mentioned the Spring Concert has displayed a 1:3 ratio (SJU student: Non SJU student) in the past. This concert committee structure became the student entertainment committee that is run by Dr. Geiger. He has met with members since late September to discuss artist options and financial strategies to bring in a quality set of events. This committee included members of WSJU Radio, Haraya, SGI, residence students association and Greek council in order to “represent all the student voices.” This year’s tentatively scheduled events during Spring Week will include: Earth Day, which will showcase fairtrade, organic and environmentally-friendly goods, on April 22, the Fashion Show on April 24, Battle of the Voices in Carnesecca Arena on April 25 and Campus Movie Festival on April 26. Geiger said for both the Fashion Show and the Voices’, the University will recruit a “big-name host.” However, the Voices’ host will give a musical performance along with five or six student artists that have auditioned prior to the competition. The hosts will be named at later date. Part of the reason there the Spring Week will see changes this year is be-
cause there are security, staging, sound and agent fees to account for besides the artist’s compensation. “One of the problems with major artists is there are so many costs involved,” Geiger said. “We realized last year it was really expensive. We want to be good stewards of our resources.” SGI used $6,000 of its initial concert fund to hire Lupe Fiasco for Tip-Off in October, according to SGI president Lizzy Sheehan. Despite the change in programming, Geiger said to expect an “engaging event” where you will see “the best of your peers” and still have “great sense of pride.” Students offered opposing opinions on the subject, some preferring star power over talent from the school’s backyard. “Honestly, I’m conflicted in some ways because I think it’s a fantastic opportunity for young aspiring artists to get exposure for us to enjoy our talented student performers,” said Alexi-Marie Zagar, a freshman television-film major. “On the other hand, I’m a little upset since most of my friends from back home in San Francisco are attending colleges that have huge performers like Steve Aoki at Sacred Heart University in Connecticut.”
COMPILED BY TALIA TIRELLA Assistant News Editor
Museum Adminstration as a new M.A.
The University is preparing to launch a new Master of Arts in Museum Administration next semester. The 36-credit degree will be offered by the St. John’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences on the Queens campus beginning in fall 2014. The program will prepare students for careers in the evolving museum industry that has been swept by globalization and rapid technological change in recent years. The program is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Students will have the chance to visit museums, archives, libraries, and other cultural resources. They will also have the opportunity to take electives from the University’s graduate program in public history. Both St. John’s campuses in Paris and Rome will offer study abroad and internship opportunities. Applicants are expected to have completed a bachelor of arts degree with at least 24 credits in art history or a major in a related area of the humanities, as well as coursework in art history.
Support St.Baldrick’s Day and Locks for Love
Students will participate in the second annual Locks of Love and St. Baldrick’s Day event on Thursday, March 20. The event is meant to raise awareness in the fight against childhood cancer. The event will take place in the D’Angelo Center Living room from 1:45 p.m. until 3:30 p.m. Last year, students raised over $38,000. Participants are asked to raise money, with 100 percent of the profits going directly to the St. Baldrick’s Foundation. As part of the event’s solidarity with children who suffer from cancer, anyone who participates is asked to shave their head or cut their hair. For more information or to register for the event, visit www.stbaldricks. org. For more information, contact Angela Seegel at email@example.com.
FOLLOW US ON TWITTER @SJUTORCH FOLLOW US ON INSTAGRAM @SJU_TORCH
Spring Week will have a different version of the Spring concert this year in which student artists will also perform.
SJU celebrates St. Paddy’s Day
Students partake in the popular Irish holiday in different ways
JOYCE JUNN Staff Writer
Whether it was holding a banner at the parade or eating homemade Irish food, the University community celebrated St. Patrick’s Day in full swing Monday. Familiar sights of clovers and the overabundance of green clothing filled both the Queens campus and New York City as students and faculty took part in different ways to commemorate the popular holiday dedicated to the patron saint of Ireland. Known as Lá Fhéile Pádraig in Irish, the holiday was first celebrated as a religious and cultural holiday to recognize the death of St. Patrick. It is celebrated on March 17 and was made into an official feast day for Christians in the 17th century, which many Christian outlets observe. As well as celebrating St. Patrick, the Irish celebrate their culture as well as the arrival of Christianity in Ireland. Until about the 1970s, St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland was a minor religious holiday and an opportunity to have big family meals. Junior Jenny Rankin, who is Irish-American, considers St. Paddy’s Day her favorite holiday of the year. “It’s a time when I get to celebrate all the great things about being Irish,” she said. “Dancing is a huge part of my life and I love that but I also love that everyone gets involved. No matter what your background is, you are Irish on St. Paddy’s Day.” A diverse set of St. John’s students and faculty marched up Fifth Avenue Monday afternoon to take part in New York City’s 253rd St. Patrick’s Day Pa-
Students, faculty and alumni marched down 5th Avenue in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Monday.
rade. Junior Nicole Gubelli, an English major, said she would rather spend St. Patrick’s Day at home. “My whole life, my mother, brother and I celebrate the day by watching the NYC parade for my father who march-
es with the FDNY and has been for the past 18 years,” Gubelli said. “I always prepare dinner; corned beef, cabbage, carrots, horseradish and of course, my favorite, homemade Irish soda bread!” Senior James Sullivan said that celebrating St. Patrick’s Day is one of his
favorite annual traditions. “Between the Celtic atmosphere, the music and the soda bread, it’s hard not to enjoy it” he said. “I think it’s great when people find the time to recognize the cultures of the world.”
replied to the situation stating, “Venezuela, rather than trying to distract from its own failings by making up false accusations against diplomats from the United States, [the government] ought to focus on addressing the legitimate grievances of the Venezuelan people.”
Secretary of State John Kerry also replied, stating the administration’s hope for Maduro to begin “meaningful dialogue with the opposition.” President Maduro threatened to remove American media outlets from the country saying he would not tolerate war
propaganda against Venezuela. “I symphasize for the Venezualen people but also feel that the stereotypical image of American politics and media is being used as a source of propaganda for the Venezualen government.” Jules Fernandes, a freshman, said. Maduro proposed replacing CNN with Zum TV, which would allegedly provide a more accurate reporting of events. Leopoldo Lopez, a prominent political leader and economist, has become the face of the opposition. The Venezuelan government has accused him of terrorism, murder and causing the anti-government protests. After days of hiding, Lopez turned himself in before thousands of supporters. On Feb. 20 the press was informed Lopez would still be tried on three counts connected to the protests, but homicide and terrorism would no longer be included. Social media has also played an important role in the protests, with many referring to twitter as “the only free media.” However, it has been difficult to differentiate between fact and fiction, as both the opposition and the government broadcast false information via social websites. “I am from the Mexican Border, and I know about the violence in Mexico.” Joslyn Lem, an academic co-chair of LASO, said. “But there is a lot of violence in Venezuela, and it’s three times as worse than in Mexico.”
University sympathizes with Venezuelans after month of protests SAHARIN SULTANA Staff Writer More than a month has passed since Venezuelans began rioting against President Nicholas Maduro. The protests erupted after a series of social and economic problems, which casted doubt on the government and triggered overall chaos. The St. John’s University community sympathasizes with the stuggle in South Africa. Many of the protestors participating are students, but prominent political leaders and celebrities have also joined the cause. Venezuelans have taken to the streets of Caracas leading to gruesome skirmishes between rioters and the police. As of March 18, the death toll has risen to 29 deaths and 365 injuries, the most recent death being that of a Venezuelan National Guard captain. Economic policies caused high inflation and scarcity of basic goods. Today, demonstrators are demanding an end to shortages and protected freedom of speech. Some blame Venezuela’s government for these shortages because of its high level of corruption. Others blame the opposition for the country’s economic and security problems. According to CNN, top Venezuelan leaders have accused United States officials of attempting to destabilize the government. President Barack Obama
Protestors behind a riot shield which was taken from the National Guard.
Opinion Editorial Board XCI
KIERAN LYNCH Editor-in-Chief MITCHELL PETIT-FRERE Managing Editor CHRISTOPHER BRITO News Editor SHANNON LUIBRAND Features Editor SAMANTHA ALBANESE Entertainment Editor
FLAMES OF THE TORCH Focus on SJU students is a welcome step for concert Spring Week at St. John’s has always been a highly anticipated time. It is a time to celebrate the hard work we put in throughout the semester and relax before finals. It is also time for the Spring Concert. In years past, the Spring Concert has hosted big names including 2Chainz, Kendrick Lamar, Gym Class Heroes and Maroon 5—among many others. However, due to “budgetary obligations,” Dr. Douglas Geiger, associate vice president of student affairs, and the Student Entertainment Committee got together and decided Spring Week would be approached differently this year. The concert will not be like year’s past, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Along with five or six student artists who will go through a judging or try-out process, a “big-name host” will be a part of Battle of the Voices concert as well as the Fashion Show. This decision is not only financially effective, as SGI put aside $50,000 for Spring Week and less than $15,000 was used to book Lupe Fiasco for a performance during Tip-Off in October, but it also allows the St. John’s community to support their fellow students. Many students have never attended one of the spring concerts because the artists of late haven’t appealed to them. It seems the administration and SGI are
seeking to fix that issue by making sure there is input from groups that represent different students’ interests. At such a large school with people from various walks of life, we think that’s an important step. With such a large cost involved in recruiting a big-name artist, to recruit our own students to perform in our Spring Concert encourages more school spirit and a larger St. John’s audience than non-SJU, which has been an issue in the past. The Torch commends the choice to include a space for students to showcase their talent while also providing a wellknown performer. But in the future, if the University would like to continue to host a diverse Spring Concert with comparable big-name artists to year’s past, other options could be considered such as a slight increase to the admission fee, to either SJU or non-SJU students. Instead of charging an incredibly low fee for students to attend, make it something like $30 and help build funds for big names that people will be willing to spend that money for in the first place. Nevertheless, we anticipate a positive and encouraging atmosphere for the forthcoming events. The students will be able to enjoy the unique chance of seeing their friends and peers display their talents in front of the student body along with the special, currently unknown, headliner.
TORCH ILLUSTRATION/ DIAMON WATTS-WALKER
directorial debut is
SPECTACULAR.” – Pete Hammond, Movieline
“A wickedly clever
COMEDY.” – Karen Durbin, Elle
“The entire cast is
PERFECTION.” – Pete Hammond, Movieline
EDITORIAL POLICY Editorials are the opinions of the Editorial Board of the TORCH. Columns are the opinions of the author(s) and are not necessarily those of The TORCH. Opinions
expressed in editorials, columns, letters or cartoons are not necessarily those of the student body, faculty or administrations of St. John’s University.
TO CONTRIBUTE Mail letters to: The TORCH, St. John’s University 8000 Utopia Parkway, Jamaica, NY 11439 Submit letters via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
All are welcome to contribute to the Torch. Please include your full name, year, and college (or department). Letters have a limit of 500 words and may be edited for content, grammar, or space. Unverifiable or anonymous letters will not be published. All letters are subject to the approval of the Editorial Board of the TORCH.
In Select Theaters March 21 • Everywhere March 28 21272 BAD WORDS COLLEGE NEWSPAPERS 5" x 6" BW
SHANNON LUIBRAND Features Editor Today, a major chapter in my life comes to a close. As we head to print, my time as features editor at the Torch, the independent student newspaper of St. John’s University, has come to an end. The last few years as a staff writer, assistant editor and features editor has been a wild, thrilling and most of all, fulfilling ride. I am leaving this newspaper having worked as a real journalist with real journalists and having covered real issues. It has not always been easy, but it has been worth it. I could not be more thankful. I like to think some articles and columns I wrote while at the Torch made a difference and truly mattered here on campus. Maybe that is presumptuous of me, but I hope my stories mattered for at least my subjects and readers. The people I had the opportunity to interview and write about will stay with me forever— each and everyday, I carry your stories with me. At the same time, not everything I wrote was well-received— and that’s okay too. In fact, that is a good thing. Sharing my opinion has lead many of our readers to share their opinions too; it has opened up discussion, self-reflection and healthy debates. Now not all debates were pretty. If you know anything about my columns here, you know some of the debates got ugly. But I stand by my words. I learned from your opinions, and even when some of you were extremely harsh with me, I took your opinions to heart, because that is what a journalist does. I am so proud of the Torch editorial board as both a group and as individuals. Working with all of you was a great plea-
sure and I suspect we will spend many more years in the field helping each other out and reflecting on the glory days. We covered the tough issues, we faced controversy head on and we stood our ground, especially when it mattered. Thank you all for being not only a great board to work with, but also great friends. I learned so much as features editor, and I am thankful for every article I had the opportunity to write, the amazing editorial board I got to work with, every person who was willing to share their story with me, every person who stood by me when my words caused uproar and every person who read my articles (especially my parents). I could not finish my time as editor without thanking our unbelievable adviser (and former Torch editor as well) Jim Baumbach. Your guidance, support and understanding have made all the difference. As you have told us many times, these memories at the Torch will last a lifetime and there is never anything quite like it. There is so much I will miss about this newsroom and it is difficult to express it all. Lastly, I am excited to see all that the next editorial board is capable of. The Torch is in good hands. I believe in all of you. Thank you all for reading. Maybe I will have another column or two before graduation, but for now, I leave it at that. What a ride it has been—can’t believe it’s over. But I like to think that long after I am gone, my words will live on.
#SJUBB failure MITCHELL PETIT-FRERE Managing Editor
A little accountability would’ve been nice. But St. John’s basketball fans didn’t get that last night after the team crashed out of the NIT after an embarrassing first round 89-78 loss to No. 8 Robert Morris at Carnesecca Arena – as a No. 1 seed, no less. Instead, they got a few well-worded excuses from the ever-philosophical Steve Lavin. The one that stuck out most was, “With the quick turnaround from Sunday to Tuesday, we just didn’t have the energy that’s necessary to win at this stage.” They didn’t have the energy, eh? Not enough energy to prove to the committee that they would’ve been a tough out in the NCAA tournament? Not enough energy to instill a bit of pride into a fan base that stuck with them through countless ups and downs this season? Not enough energy to outwardly show more than a couple spurts of genuine effort? That lack of energy only did one thing for Lavin’s squad: it proved they are what the committee must have thought they were. From what was on display last night, the committee would be hard pressed not to be a little thankful Providence knocked off the Johnnies in the Big East tournament last week. Maybe that’s harsh, but harsh it what this team needs. Fans are tired of constant reminders after each questionable loss that there’s been steady improveShannon Luibrand is a senior journalsim ment. Especially not when Lavin has major who has gratly impressed her fellow consistently hinted that his team was poised Torch staff members by the number of Ins- to do “something special come March.” tagram likes she accumulates. Let’s flash back to September for a moment. Lavin spoke these
words: “This is a year where we’re positioned to do something special.” We’re in March now, and the only special thing Lavin and co. showed this month was that gutsy win in Marquette; and that was a lot more dramatic than it had to be. This season was an abject failure. You didn’t hear anything close to that coming from Lavin after losing in the first round of the Big East Tournament when a win would have greatly increased the Red Storm’s chances of making the NCAA tournament – an accomplishment that was more than a pipe dream back when the season started. Instead of flat out saying his team blew a prime chance at a tournament spot and decent shot at the Big East tournament title (remember, No. 1 seed Villanova was bounced in the first round), he decided to tell reporters that a place in the NIT was nothing to fret about. Plus, he said, a 20-win season had to be considered a success. Well, fresh off a brief appearance in the NIT and a 20-win season, does the St. John’s men’s basketball team look like such a hot prospect? Personally, I think it’s the farthest from it. And so do many fans. Type #sjubb into Twitter and take a look for yourself. But before you do that, hold some hope that, going forward, Lavin starts to take some accountability when his team runs into rough patches. It’s okay to lose, but it’s not okay when you don’t own up to it. Mitchell Petit-Frere is a senior English and journalism double major who is incredibly greatful and proud to have worked with Torch Editorial Board XCI. We’ve done it all. Except find @ByChrisBrito’s shirt...
Life changing break, Give Kids the World
SARAH A. TAORMINO Contributing Writer
Among the multitude of programs that St. John’s offers, perhaps the most enriching is the alternative Spring Break option. As my peers headed to destinations such as Cancun and Punta Cana for the week, I headed somewhere altogether different. A place much more special, much more influential. That place is the Give Kids the World Village located in Kissimmee, Fla. Founded in 1989 by Holocaust survivor Henri Landwirth, the Give Kids the World Village is a resort where families of children with terminal illnesses can enjoy an all-inclusive vacation free of charge. Give Kids the World is partnered with several organizations, including Make-a-Wish, to make this possible. Included in this vacation are tickets to the surrounding theme parks, such as SeaWorld and Disney World. However, families can choose to stay in the Village and still have an incredible trip. The Village boasts such onsite amenities as a theater, a wheelchair accessible carousel, pool, spa, arcade, mini golf course and themed parties each night. The families are housed in villas on the premises, and each family receives a rental car for the duration of their stay. While staying in the villas, the families can have food delivered for breakfast, lunch or dinner. At night, they can have cookies and milk and a bedtime story delivered by Village mascot May-
or Clayton. Just this past year, the Village was paid a visit by Extreme Home Makeover. 88 villas were remodeled, as well as the volunteer welcome center. The slogan for Give Kids the World is “Where happiness inspires hope.” After my trip, I believe this is more of a promise than it is a slogan. There is something truly remarkable about Give Kids the World. My initial perception was that this trip would be very sobering; I wrongfully assumed there would be something sad about it. I could not have been any more wrong. During the four days I spent volunteering in the Village, I saw nothing but radiant, happy faces of wish children, siblings and parents alike. Their happiness is contagious. From the moment you set foot onto the property, it becomes apparent that there is something special about the place. It is not merely its whimsical appearance. The Village has the incredible ability to make each family feel so special, so loved, so welcomed. Children are doted upon by volunteers, and parents have the opportunity to bond with other parents. I had the pleasure of speaking with one father, whose daughter is currently in the midst of chemotherapy for leukemia. He marveled at her progress since arriving at the Village. She undergoes daily testing to monitor the state of her illness, and her results have improved dramatically since their arrival. The story this father shared with me is not an isolated occurrence. Several parents shared similar stories with me. The constant smiles of the children are a
St. John’s Students at Give Kids the World in Florida over their spring break.
living testimony to this idea. I found my trip to be a source of strength for me in my returning weeks. I am truly amazed by the resilience of these families. Despite incredible hardships, there is such a positive spirit surrounding the Village because of them. I think of this trip every single day. It is so easy to become distracted by the melodramas of life: running late to work, bad hair days, monetary woes. When I feel myself beginning to indulge in self-pity, I reflect on my time at the Village. I think of the sheer bliss on these children’s faces as they hugged Mayor
Clayton. I think of the simple joy of coloring and having a very in-depth conversation about which Power Ranger is the best. I think of giggles as I helped make pillows at the Magic Tree. I think of the sounds of laughter as the carousel whirred. These are the things that have changed my perspective on life and on what really matters. “The most magical place on Earth” is a title that belongs to Disney World, but I am inclined to disagree. I believe whoever gave Disney World that title must never have been to the Give Kids the World Village.
Oldest fish and chips shop, adventures
KYLE FITZGERALD Online Editor
After I got back to my accommodations from a short four-hour trip to Caffe Nero in the city centre (I can spell it that way because I’m in England) on Friday, I reflexively opened up my news feed on Facebook. The first thing I saw was a Lent-inspired post from BuzzFeed regarding fish and chips. I hurriedly clicked on the link that took me to a list of 25 things I didn’t know about this dish. It was point number four that sparked a particular interest. Interestingly enough, and as a huge coincidence, I learned that the oldest fish & chip shop in the world is located in Yeadon, just outside of Leeds. “What a treat,” I thought to myself. I impatiently waited for the next morning (I was eating fish & chips while reading this post about fish and chips) to set out on my latest quest: an expedition to the oldest fish and chips establishment in the world. I took the train from Leeds and got off at Guiseley, only a 10-minute ride. From there I set out on foot for a half hour until I reached Yeadon, another stereotypical-looking British town with stone buildings and a convenient location on top of a steep hill that was sure to
set a raging fire in my calves. day afternoon and after passing a couple I reached my destination. On a small cross-lights exiting the train station, I side street to my right at 23 Sandy Way, was able to hear music. This was 10 minwith only a small sign outside its doors. utes away from where I first heard it, so I walked directly across from the estab- it was quite loud. Not that anyone cared. lishment to notice its designation This would-be-full-Irishas the oldest fish and chip man-were-it-not-for-hisshop in the world (it’s part-French-Canadibeen serving the coman-ethnicity was too munity since 1865.) excited to join the I stepped closer crowd and showto the building. I case his countnoticed it was a less arm freckbit dim, and then les. peered through I entered the window to Millennium notice that it Square. Upon was uninhabited. entry, there I then looked at were a few their hours of operthings I noticed: ation. They close at There were sever1:30 pm on weekends al hundred people in and I arrived there a little attendance. There was bit after 2:00 pm. a small carnival for the PHOTO/KYLE FITZGERALD So much for that. children. There were Speaking of Ireland, two incredibly large it was St. Patrick’s Day on Monday! and busy beer gardens. There was a stage I must have gone to Dublin, right? not too far from me to which even more Or London? Nope, I stayed right here people gravitated. in good ol’ Leeds to partake in the local I was first introduced to a group festivities. We actually celebrated it on called The Pigs. I couldn’t understand Sunday, the day before one of the great- much of what they were saying, but over est days of the year. the banjos, flutes, violins, guitars and I set out for the city centre on Sun- drums I could make out a couple words
that I deciphered as “We want to see you dance and want to see you jiggin’.” Very festive, this song was. After they were finished jiggin’, traditional step dancers took the stage. Two Irish dancing academies were showcased while I was there. Unfortunately, it was rather difficult to see these kids dance while I was behind an unusually tall crowd. After they were finished, it was back to the music, this time brought to us by the Leeds Irish Society. I counted a group of over a dozen on the stage, with instruments including a guitar, an accordion, many flutes and violins, one drum and one harp. The Irish Society played various tunes, some instrumental and some with lyrics. They even played a Scottish song; I only know this because they introduced it before playing it. The festivities continued to take place for what I’m assuming is the rest of the day; I left at 3 p.m. to satisfy some hunger issues. That pretty much sums up my weekend. Three traditions – Catholic, British and Irish – in as many days. Kyle Fitzgerald is studying abroad in England this semester and writing about his excursions each week.
Remembering campus bar, The Rat THE UNIVERSITY CENTER WAS THE HUB OF STUDENT LIFE BACK IN THE 70s AND 80s
SHANNON LUIBRAND Features Editor Toothpick dangling from his mouth, a guy named Bob pours beer into plastic cups with the St. John’s University logo on them. The lights are dim, the exposed red brick and wood paneling create both a homey and pub-like atmosphere. The year is 1979 and this is a typical Friday evening at the Rathskellar. Members of Student Government Inc., the Torch, HARAYA and WSJU Radio shuffle in and out, rubbing shoulders. Booths jampacked with students line the walls and copies of the Torch hang off the ends of the wooden tables where students sit in groups nursing their beers. Everyone is huddled close; some throw their heads back in laughter while others chat quietly about their week. Some wander around from clique to clique as a guitarist checks the microphones on stage before beginning his act. “It kind of looked like the 70s,” James Monnier, class of ’74, said. “Kind of looked like Grandma’s basement.” The University Center, located across from Jack Kaiser Stadium, now houses the Office of Institutional Advancement, where Monnier is Associate Vice President of Institutional Advancement. But long before it was an office building, the campus bar the “Rathskellar,” more commonly known as “The Rat,” was lodged there. Yes, that’s right. The campus bar. It was different times then, some 25 years ago, Monnier said. The drinking age was 18 and many campuses had bars or pubs for students. The Rat sold beer and wine Monday through Friday from about 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Then on Friday nights, in the University Commons, the larger space in the University Center, bigger events were held. But the beer was served in the Rathskellar. So much has changed at St. John’s over the years, yet it is important to remember the past. And for anyone who went to school in the 1970s or ’80s, all you have to do is to mention the word Rathskellar and it’s sure to bring back a host of memories. “It was just a place where people could go, sort of hang out, relax,” Monnier said. “And you know, just connect with people. As a 100 percent commut-
er school, it was really one of the places where folks could go to connect after or before class.” Before the D’Angelo Center was built and students lived on campus, the University Center was the hub where students gathered, said Bill Schultz, class of ’86. “The Rathskellar was a place where everyone knew your name,” John Reinhardt, class of ’82 and a former SGI president, said. “A place where we could go and meet with students to study, or unwind and discuss the great happenings at school. We would talk about Chris Mullin’s and Carnesecca’s crew having a great season once again, and plan on ways that we could join up with the team on the road games. Many times, we planned these trips around the Rathskellar. Some would often say that a lot of student government’s best ideas were developed at the Rat.” The alcohol at the Rat was provided by the campus dining services and served on tap, Monnier explained. From 1974 to 1980 Monnier was employed by the University, and part of his job was to oversee the Student Union Board, the modern day Student Programming Board. As a result, he oversaw a lot of the activities that took place at the Rat on Friday afternoons and evenings. All of the events had to be approved by his office beforehand. Friday night events were usually held by organizations, such as Student Government or Greek Life. Those events began around 7:30 p.m. and were over by 11:30. Admission was around $7 and each student received a strip of seven tickets each good for one beer. The beer was served in 8 ounce cups. On a typical Friday night, anywhere between 500 to 600 students would attend the events, often called “Beer Blasts.” “We kept the cups small, we limited the tickets. That was our way of discouraging overindulgence,” Monnier said. “I don’t ever recall breaking up a fight or any of those sorts of things. It was just sort of accepted that was the culture. You drank legally at 18. So it was no sneaking about or hiding it.” Besides campus dining providing food and drink, Monnier said, the Rat was pretty much student-run. Student Safety Cadets, acting like bouncers, tended to be
PHOTO/THE VINCENTIAN 1978-79
Interior of the Rathskellar, where students sat in booths and at wooden tables.
off-season football or lacrosse players. They stood guard at the doors, checked student IDs and made sure things were kept under control. Students hired the entertainment, as well as scheduled and ran the events. Schultz remembers the University Center as his home away from home on campus. As an active member of the Student Union and WSJU Radio, he spent a lot of time in the University Center, where the majority of student groups were stationed. The University Center also included a game room, candy shop, cafeteria and the commons. “It was a neat room, neat place,” Schultz said about the Rat. “I basically lived at the University Center when I was in college.” The University Center was built in 1972, but the Rat was around long before that. Monnier said he believes the Rat was previously housed in the subbasement of Marillac. When the University Center was built, the new Rat was built along with it. “It really was well-trafficked. It was always very crowded,” Michael Brady, class of ‘86, another former SGI president and a current employee of the University said. “It was very well managed... It was the social hub of campus. Culturally [at the time] it was okay, it was okay to have that sort of space.” But all alumni insist the Rat had more to it than just cheap beer. “It was a place during the day to just essentially hang out comfortably,” Monnier said. Added Schultz, “The central purpose of the room wasn’t necessarily to be a bar or be a pub…it could take on a lot of different vibes depending on how many people were there or what was going on there.” Monnier had two favorite events that took place at the Rat; the coffee house series and the comedy nights. Brady, Schultz and Reinhardt agreed the comedy nights were also a personal favorite. The comedy nights began in 1976 as a coffee house series known as “Beggars Banquet,” named after The Rolling Stone’s album. They were held in the Rat usually on Thursday nights. The tables were covered in checkered tablecloths with candlelight, games like backgammon and checkers were available to play. PHOTO/THE VINCENTIAN 1978-79 “The idea there was to offer alternative Students in the 70s socializing in the Rathskellar enjoying snack foods and beer.
program,” Monnier said. “Quieter, a little bit more mellow.” As time went on, the comedy night became extremely popular among students. Reinhardt said some students remember Eddie Murphy once attended before he was famous. The students would hire local and up-and-coming comedians to perform. Beer and wine were also still served, but so were coffee and food. Sometimes the line to get in would wrap around the block. In 1986 the drinking age was raised to 21. According to administrators, the Rat closed between 1991 and 1992. In the early 90s, when Brady was the Greek Life adviser, the Rat was still open, but much more controlled. Students were required to wear wrist bands and the events were closely monitored. Brady said when he eventually heard the Rat closed, he wasn’t surprised. “Times were changing,” he said. “It kind of makes me sad. [It was] part of the social fabric.” Monnier agreed. “I know it changed a lot when the law changed to 21,” he said. “The University then just made the correct decision to say no alcohol.” Schultz also understands why the Rat needed to close. He now has a son who attends St. John’s. When he came back to the campus with his son for the first time, he pointed out to him where the Rat use to be. “When I think back to college…that’s where the events were,” he said. And even though times have changed, he still believes the Rat was a very special place. “Great memories from there. That building felt like it was a student place,” he said. “The whole building itself was like an oasis.” Reinhardt said the connection the Rat provided students with was undeniable. He believes the Rat tied together the different facets of student life at St. John’s. “The Rathskellar will always hold a special place in my heart,” he said. “As it will for so many SJU students and alum.” Alumni remember the Rathskellar being spelled both as “Rathskeller” and “Rathskellar.” News stories also spell it both ways. The Torch archives spelled it as Rathskellar, so for the purpose of this article we did too.
Photo Archive: Remembering ‘The Rat’
PHOTO/ST. JOHN’S 1972-73 YEARBOOK PHOTO/THE VINCENTIAN 1972-73
Students listen to a performer at the Rat. PHOTO/DIANA COLAPIETRO
Michael Brady, SGI president in the 80s, shows the Torch pictures of the Rathskellar from his yearbook.
During the brief period when the drinking age was raised to 19 in 1983, St. John’s required students to wear wristbands to enter and drink at the Rat. PHOTO/THE VINCENTIAN 1972-73
The Torch hangs off a table in the Rathskellar where students are socializing.
Typical Friday evening at the Rat included live music, cheap beer and socializing.
An advertisement for a Rathskellar event that appeared in the Torch in 1985.
Young acts showcased on ‘Deans List Tour’
TALIA TIRELLA Assistant News Editor
The Dean’s List Tour, a forum for underground artists to promote themselves, made a stop in the Little Theatre at St. John’s this past Friday night. The event featured performances from both St. John’s students and local artists. The tour started in 2012 and has been making stops at over 25 colleges. The tour is a chance for underground artists in New York City to showcase their talents. Currently, the tour is on its second leg, which kicked off on October 18,
2013. The tour was founded by Nigel “Scott Morris” Guscott, a student at John Jay College. He created the tour in hopes of unifying students and the New York City community at large. The tour started at eight schools, but that amount has now tripled since the tour launched in August 2012 thanks to help from Guscott’s peers with connections to other colleges. While the tour focuses on artists from New York, it has expanded this year and will be making stops at colleges in Ohio, Illinois, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, and Delaware. For this season’s tour, over 250 can-
didates auditioned but only 40 were chosen to perform. All of the candidates represent a wide spectrum of musical genres, from R&B to spoken word. Students and artists are always welcome to audition for the tour. The event at St. John’s featured a DJ from WSJU who entertained the audience before the show and between acts, as well as St. John’s student performers. Local performers included Z3RO THE COMET, ONSM@SH, and Hieroglyph Thesaurus, among others. Step Ya Game Up, the St. John’s University step team, started the night with a strong performance. Captain Anscia Brown, sophomore,
TORCH PHOTO/TALIA TIRELLA
SJU step team, Step Ya Game Up, performed during the Dean’s List showcase at the Little Theatre.
said that the team was invited to perform, and they accepted the offer because it was their first chance to perform as part of the tour. Last year, the team performed on the No Boys Allowed (NBA) tour, the all-female version of Dean’s List. The NBA tour will take place again this year, and started on March 11th. The host of the event was Justina Parlay, a second-year communications major at St. John’s. She is known in the New York City area as Parlay, and is a freestyle spoken word poet. She helped with the creation of the tour while she was still attending St. Francis College last year. Parlay also performed a spoken word piece at the event. She frequently performs at other stops on the tour as well. Of the tour, Parlay said, “The movement is about being positive and encouraging students to reach for and achieve their dreams. The tour is one big family, and you get to know everyone when you’re a part of it.” She also said that representatives from the tour have recently started going to high schools “to motivate younger kids and to tell them that it is possible to go after their dreams.” Aaron Harris, a junior anthropology major, said that his favorite part of the event was the host, Parlay, and said that she was really entertaining. Ricardine Laventure, a freshman French major, agreed, saying that she “really enjoyed all of the music, as well as the host.” For more information, visit www. deanslisttour.com. To see footage from this year’s tour, search ‘Dean’s List Tour’ on YouTube.
The latest beauty must-haves for the Spring LAURICE RAWLS Staff Writer With the first day of spring approaching, it’s beyond time for all of us to unravel our scarves, peel off our winter gear and to start preparing our skin, nails and hair for the beautiful weather ahead of us. For those of us who neglect our hidden skin (AKA legs, feet, elbows and arms), it’s time to begin moisturizing now so that your skin isn’t cracking or looking dry when you take your first steps down the Strip. Try Vaseline Aloe Fresh ($4.99 at drugstores) for a light cream that refreshes and revives moisture back into the skin. The scent is clean and fresh, making it wearable for both men and women. The winter months can be tough on our faces even if you think you’re outside only for a few seconds in between classes. For those of you who have been neglecting moisturizing your face, try Eucerin Everyday Protection Face Lotion ($9.99, walgreens.com). It has SPF so it’s perfect to add to your spring/summer beauty routine. It’s crucial that your moisturizer has SPF; you never truly know how much the sun is damaging your skin.
Moisturizer isn’t only for women – men, your skin needs to be moisturized daily as well. Feel free to take a few drops of your sister or girlfriend’s moisturizer to give your face a smooth look. Smooth skin and sunshine are guaranteed to leave a smile on your face, which may provide a fear that perhaps your teeth simply aren’t white enough. When shining your beautiful smile throughout campus, in interviews and during social gatherings, make sure your teeth are clean and white with Colgate Optic White Toothbrush with whitening pen ($14.99 at drugstores). The whitening pen attaches to the toothbrush for easy, on-the-go touch-ups. With the perfect smile, make sure to moisturize your lips with EOS Smooth Strawberry sorbet ($3.29, evolutionofsmooth.com). The perfect set of teeth can be completely overshadowed by chapped lips. Make sure to keep your lips moisturized and put your best smile forward. Not only does the winter mess with our spirits, but it tends to dry out our hair and bring on intense split ends. For those of us currently suffering with split ends and not ready for a major chop, try Pantene Pro-V Split Fix Instant Split End Repair Crème ($6.29 at drugstores). Apply the crème after washing, conditioning or blow-drying your hair.
Split ends can cause extremely low hair self-esteem and avoiding unwanted hair chops is always positive. For those of you who are suffering from consistent split ends, try using Suave’s Split End Rescue Shampoo and
Conditioner ($3.99 each at drugstores). All around, this winter in New York City has been an extremely difficult one, causing a bit of neglect in our beauty routines, but it is never too late to start taking care of your body and to make
These cheap beauty hacks will have you bright and cheery for Spring.
Pharrell releases iTunes Radio exclusive MICHAEL FALLIGAN Staff Writer PHARRELL WILLIAMS G.I.R.L.
Pharrell Williams released his second studio album “G.I.R.L.” on March 3, 2013. The 70s-influenced record gives you a futuristic feel as well as the groove of the disco era. While “G.I.R.L.” is not groundbreaking or game-changing, the production proves that Pharrell has not lost his touch. The lyrics lack substance and focus but that is hidden by his smooth vocals and catchy beats. “Lost Queen” is infused with live instrumentation and tribal drums while Williams raps over the track – he gives you “Skateboard P” and “Happy” on the same track. Production wise, Pharrell is a gem to the music industry because he makes positive records that are always ahead of their time while using elements of disco and funk from the 70s. Of course the Oscar-nominated track “Happy” stands out on the album with its catchy beat and neosoul/funk tempo. Pharrell sings in falsetto throughout the song, belting his vocal range which spans from F3 to C5. While not a record to be on replay, “G.I.R.L.” is an enjoyable dance-pop album and is a break from the redundancy and over-used falsetto that is in today’s R&B music. The album features co-production from legendary producer Timbaland and backing vocals from Leah Labelle, Kelly Osborne, Miley Cyrus, Daft Punk, Justin Timberlake, JoJo, Alicia Keys, Tori Kelly and Reah Dummett. “G.I.R.L.” features 10 tracks and is guaranteed to make you “Happy.” The album is available on iTunes for $10.99. i Am Other/Columbia
For more Lifestyle updates, follow @TorchLifestyle on Twitter.
Ashanti’s ‘Brave’ fifth album BRIAWNNA JONES Assistant Entertainment Editor ASHANTI
Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. So hell, meet R&B diva Ashanti.The 33- year old songstress is letting it be known that she is heartbroken and on the road to recovery in her fifth-studio album “BraveHeart.” It seems to be an unofficial testament to her troubled relationship with rapper, Nelly. Nearly five years since her last album release, fans have been patiently waiting for this moment since she began recording in 2009. With the first single “Nothing Should Have” released almost a year ago,fans were beside themselves when Ashanti began to make promo rounds for her highly anticipated album. Opening the album with a track titled “Intro” as if it was still 1993, the sing-
er talked briefly about how the world “counted her out.” Getting really personal with fans, she went on to discuss the meaning of the title of her new album telling all who will listen that she will “continue to thrive, continue to prosper, and continue to be brave.” The first song on the album made it easy to forget the brave woman in the intro as Ashanti belted out a smooth tune about she was not going “Nowhere.” The opening track basically set the tone for the entire album as “Runaway” and “Scars”, two strong ballads, were heavy hitters having lyrics filled with heartache and pain. The singer chose these two songs to show her vulnerability as she opened up and shared details about her hopes for a home in the hills and matching Mercedes Benzs with Nelly. Maintaining her sexy, cool and crazy energy, the veteran vocalist had hot tracks such as “Count” and “Early in the Morning” featuring French Montana which were extremely fun and flirty. Although the tracks lack an upbeat tempo, the catchy, overly sexual lyrics make them lovable. Just when things began to be all about Nelly, Ashanti surprised listeners with a few tracks like “Love Games” featuring
Jeremih and “3 Words” which were both sultry and sweet, making them very easy to sing along to. Towards the end of the album, listening to Ashanti whine became very annoying. A few tracks on the album “She Can’t” and “Don’t Tell Me” were songs that people would expect from Taylor Swift. Although America is just about done with T. Story’s antics, no one wants to hear a woman over thirty years old carry on about a man whom she is no longer with. Fortunately, things picked up and the entire mood of the album shifted to the final stages of the breakup. Now that she was done telling him how she hurt, she was now ready to go out and dance with her girls in the album’s second single “I Got It” featuring Rick Ross. The last song on the album, “First Real Love,” a reggae tune featuring Beenie Man proved that if anything, Ashanti was consistent. However good or bad the album it was dedicated to a feeling that everyone knows all too well; love. Although full of heart and passion throughout the album, it was clear the songstress had mistaken the word brave for broken.
Perry’s new ‘Single Moms’ film ANN MARIE TURTON Staff Writer Single moms have always been showcased on the big screen, but they have never been given their own platform. Tyler Perry changed this with his new film “The Single Mom’s Club,” which debuted in theatres last Friday. The film centers on the lives of five women, one of which was played by “Best Man Holiday” actress Nia Long, who each come from different backgrounds. They all have one thing in common: they are all single moms. The films starts out by showing the women’s lives and how they got to this point, either through divorce, failed relationships or career-driven lifestyles. These women would have never met if not for their children whose moms, due to their hectic work schedules, forgot to pick up one day from school. Their children, led by Nia Long’s son, were caught damaging school property. Each child’s house was called, and each mom was scheduled to meet at a Parent Teacher conference. As a result of their children’s bad behavior, the mothers were ordered to work to together on a project related to the kids. In doing so they bonded over their issues as single mothers, and eventually started the Single Mom’s Club. The movie , though comical, touched on some serious topics these women face. New relationships, pain from old relationships, and co-parenting were all discussed in the movie. Guessing by the reactions of the audience, a lot of women could relate to these
struggles. Another key issue one of the mothers dealt with was introducing their child to a new love interest. Many women can relate to this problem.some manage to make things work but others do not succeed; their child or their man may not warm up to each other in the ways she initially hoped. Overall, women with help from the group found that they still have kinks to work out in their own parenting. Tyler Perry does not reprise his role as Madea in the film, but look for him and Eddie Cibrian, the husband of country music star Leann Rhymes to play other significant roles in the film. The Single Mom’s Club definitely
opened my eyes to a lot of things, many of which I already knew but never truly understood. I took my mom to see the movie, because yes I still hang out with mine from time to time but she just so happened to be a single mom at one point in her life as well. This film serves to help women in this position understand they are not alone; in the process of raising their kids they have to lead lives of their own, and have fun while doing it. If nothing else, this film showcased that being a single mom is not a death sentence. It can actually be one of the most challenging yet rewarding experiences.
Tyler Perry’s “Single Moms Club” flops its first week in the box office.
Season of hope hits rock bottom Top-seeded Storm end season with ‘dissapointing’ NIT ouster
KIERAN LYNCH Editor-In-Chief Maybe the St. John’s men’s basketball team hadn’t quite gotten over its bubble-bursting loss in the Big East Tournament. Maybe it couldn’t get excited in front of a sparse crowd usually seen at an exhibition game. Maybe it was because it was playing the lowest possible seed. ST. JOHN’S
Whatever the reason, St. John’s fell PHOTO/IDIANA COLAPIETRO to Robert Morris in the first round of the Jamal Branch scored a career-high 22 points in front of 1,027 fans yesterday. NIT 89-78 yesterday at Carnesecca Arena despite a ferocious comeback by the characterized the last few years of the No. 8 Colonials, couldn’t stop the opprogram as having made progress – par- position’s field goal shooting and even home team in the waning moments. The Colonials (22-13, 14-2) opened ticularly in the win column – but said in when the shots stopped falling, they the game on a 19-2 run and never lost the terms of achieving the goal of making couldn’t pick up the slack. Robert Morris lead despite the Red Storm (20-13, 10-8 the NCAA tournament, the season was finished 50 percent (16-of-32) from behind the arc and 48.2 percent (27-of-56) Big East) getting within striking distance disappointing. “This group went from 13 wins to 17 from the field. on a late 15-0 run. The loss ended a seawins to 20 wins. That’s clear progress,” St. John’s, who was without freshman son that started with high expectations. “We were pretty upset that we didn’t Lavin said. “Tonight was disappointing guard Rysheed Jordan because of tonsilmake the tournament, but they just start- because we didn’t bring forth the effort litis, made the same amount of 3-pointed hot and everything went in,” sopho- or purposeful play that would have al- ers, but had five more attempts for a percentage of 43.2. The big difference came more guard Jamal Branch said. “We con- lowed us to be competitive.” The No. 1-seeded Johnnies, who from the field with the Red Storm going tested [the shots]. It just kept falling.” St. John’s head coach Steve Lavin were favored by 15.5 points over the 37.2 percent.
Branch led the team with a career-high 22 points, followed by 18 from sophomore guard Max Hooper who kept the team in the game for a time starting off 3-of-3 from 3-point range and finished 6-of-12 overall. Guard Karvel Anderson, who finished with 38 points for Robert Morris, touched on mentality heading into an NIT game after hoping for an NCAA bid. Robert Morris pulled off a similar upset last year, upending No. 1 Kentucky in the first round. “A lot of teams after losing or not making the NCAA tournament, they come in with their heads down and kind of sad and a lot of people don’t feel like the NIT is worth their time,” Anderson said. “But we think differently.” Following Anderson, forward Lucky Jones had 25 points and nine rebounds, and guard Anthony Myers-Pate finished with 11 points. After a year of expectations that weren’t met by a team that had depth and experience, Lavin noted the pressures that will mount moving forward. “Next season will be the veteran group, returning as many lettermen as any team in the league,” Lavin said. “This group made progress. Naturally, the expectations will be ratcheted up with what we return.”
Ladies come a knoxing, will play USC on Saturday
STEPHEN ZITOLO Assistant Sports Editor
The St. John’s women’s basketball team found out Monday night that its ticket had been punched to the NCAA Tournament as the No. 8 seed in the Louisville region, where they will be taking on the No. 9 seed USC Trojans in Knoxville, Tennessee. St. John’s selection to the Tournament marks its fifth-straight at-large bid and the ninth tournament selection in program history. “We continue to rewrite history,” St. John’s head coach Joe Tartamella said. “Going there two years in a row as a head coach is obviously exciting, but also for our program, five years in a row is such a great testament to the players that have come through here and the coaches and staffs that have guided them. This is something that has been our goal all year, so we’re excited to get back in there and face USC.” The Trojans (22-12, 11-7 Pac-12) earned an automatic bid in this year’s tournament, the program’s 16th alltime, as they won the program’s first Pac-12 tournament championship. USC is
coming into the tournament riding a six-game winning streak and threestraight upset victories over Arizona State, No. 6 Stanford and Oregon State. Junior guard Ariya Cook averaging 15.8 points and senior forward Cassie Herbert’s averaging 15.6 points and 7.4 rebounds led the Trojans this season. “I would have never guessed that I would be going to my fifth NCAA Tournament,” redshirt senior guard Eugeneia McPherson said. “I was excited to be a part of the group that made it four years in a row but to make it five times in a row is extremely exciting for myself, my team and my coaching staff.” The Red Storm (22-10, 13-5 Big East) finished a regular season that saw them win 11 straight Big East games only to suffer losses in four of their final five conference games to finish the regular season second in the Big East behind the only other conference team to make the dance, DePaul. St. John’s had an impressive Big East tournament run, led by sophomore guard and All-Tournament selection Aliyyah Handford, who averaged 18.7 points, 5.3 rebounds and 3.3 steals, to only fall to DePaul in the Big East tournament championship. For her performance in the regular season, Handford was selected
to the All-Big East First Team. Eugenia McPherson was awarded 2013-14 Big East Sportsmanship Award; freshman Jade Walker was chosen to the league’s All-Freshman Team and junior Amber Thompson was selected as a Big East Honorable Mention. “We’ve definitely had some ups and definitely had some downs,” senior guard Briana Brown said. “I’m just happy that everyone is healthy and coming together. We have our whole
team here and we want to show people what we can really do.” “I think we have a lot of pieces, like everybody in the tournament,” Tartamella said. “When we’ve been successful we’ve defended very well. If we can do that we have the ability to possibly make a run.” St. John’s and USC will have their first ever matchup on March 22 to determine who moves on to the round of 32.
The Red Storm celebrate its fifth consecutive tournament appearance.
ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT
SJU Legends Recall the Golden Age of Lapchick
The 1959 St. John’s men’s basketball team celebrate with head coach Joe Lapchick after winning the NIT championship.
Members of the 1959 NIT Championship team (left to right): Gus Alfieri ’59C, ’64GEd, Lou Roethel ’60C, ’62G, ’72GEd and Rich Engert ’59C, ’61GEd
In a small Italian restaurant on eastern Long Island, three St. John’s legends reminisce. Teammates on the 1959 Men’s Basketball team, Gus Alfieri ’59C, ’64GEd, Rich Engert ’59C, ’61GEd and Lou Roethel ’60C, ’62G, ’72GEd enjoyed tremendous success: together, they won that year’s Holiday Festival and National Invitation Tournament. And they remember those days like they were yesterday. “Lou had a great NIT during the year we won it all, shooting 26 of 38 for the tournament,” remembers Alfieri, who still possesses an encyclopedic knowledge of the game. “We won the championship match 76-71 in double-overtime over Bradley. It was close, but that year we really clicked as a team.” Engert and Roethel nod in agreement, as more stories come flooding back: the miraculous hook shot Roethel hit at the buzzer to beat Utah in the 1958 NIT; a raucous road game in Richmond where Engert could hardly hear himself think; and Alfieri’s recollections of guarding all-time greats like Jerry West, Lenny Wilkens and “Satch” Sanders.
inspired them to do off the court. All three players were the first in their immediate families to graduate from college, and all three went on to receive postgraduate degrees – the true epitome of the term “student-athlete.” “When we became leaders on the team, there was never a need to police anyone,” Engert says. “I never had to tell Gus to get to bed early the night before a game. He just did.” “Exactly,” Alfieri agrees. “We always went to class, because why else did we go to school? None of us came from wealth. We wanted the education just as much as we wanted to play basketball.” Engert was a member of the University’s Skull and Circle Honor Society and landed a teaching job after graduating cum laude from St. John’s. He also coached basketball and was involved in local politics, all while raising a wonderful family. Roethel, meanwhile, became an esteemed mathematician, working at Nassau Community College soon after it was founded in 1960. While there, he established the college’s basketball program and watched as NCC’s enrollment grew from 632
Most of all, though, they remember the man who coached them: the legendary Joe Lapchick. “When it came to Xs and Os, Lapchick always knew how to help us,” Roethel explains. “But it’s the other stuff – in terms of dealing with people and living your life – where the man was truly a genius.” Lapchick was a hardwood legend and had just been coaching the New York Knickerbockers for 11 seasons when he decided to return for his second stint at St. John’s. The college basketball world was reeling from a point-shaving scandal in the early ’50s, but Lapchick’s return to SJU provided a much-needed boost to the popularity of the sport. “Fans were devastated by the point-shaving scandal,” Alfieri says. “Madison Square Garden was drawing pathetic crowds, but when Lapchick returned, it was like a jolt in the arm.” Lapchick led the Johnnies to a number of successful seasons, reinvigorating the Garden with his teams’ tenacious style of play. But for all their victories, Alfieri, Engert and Roethel remember Lapchick even more for what he
students to over 20,000. And Alfieri taught history – his academic passion – for over 27 years, all while coaching basketball at St. Anthony’s High School. During his tenure, he brought St. Anthony’s from a doormat program to the number-one Catholic team in the country, number-one team in New York and number-five overall team in the country. “I guess we did pretty well for ourselves,” Alfieri says, smiling at his two former teammates. “Three guys who went to class, got our degrees and also happened to win on the court for a very successful coach.” In 2006, Alfieri authored Lapchick: The Life of a Legendary Player and Coach in the Glory Days of Basketball, a loving biography of his St. John’s mentor. And as all three of these men recall, Lapchick’s influence on their careers was enormous. “I was turned down at first from the job at Nassau Community,” Roethel recalls. “They called me back soon afterwards, though, and hired me. I didn’t learn until later that Coach Lapchick wrote me a letter of recommendation, and that carried a lot of weight.”
ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT
McArdle’s record setting day carries storm
Lacrosse wins in OT versus No. 17 Hofstra Stephen Zitolo Assistant Sports Editor
The St. John’s men’s lacrosse team continued to use their home-field advantage on the season as they are now undefeated, 4-0, at DaSilva Memorial Field after beating No. 17 Hofstra 11-10 in overtime. ST. JOHN’S
St. John’s was led once again by standout senior attacker Kieran McArdle who had a record-breaking day. McArdle entered the day with 214 career points sitting five points behind St. John’s hall of famer Mike Bulger career mark of 219 points. McArdle had a career day as he had six goals, the last of which was the game winner, and two assists on the day for 8 points. This historic day put McArdle at the top of the Red Storm record books with 222 career points. “Everybody here and certainly everybody in the country knows who we are going to in crunch time,” St. John’s head coach Jason Miller said. “That’s what makes the great ones. What makes Kieran great is that he makes the plays. We’re going to work hard to give him opportunities to do what he does knowing that he has the unique ability of making the play.
There’s not another guy I’d rather have with the ball in that situation than him.” “It’s a great honor to hold the scoring record at any Division I school let alone at a great program like St. Johns,” McArdle said. “I couldn’t have done it without my teammates, who finish goals to give me assists and are always looking for me on the field. Scoring the game-winner against a Long Island rival was a special feeling, especially since I am from there.” The Red Storm’s (4-3) win versus the Pride (4-3) makes it two years in a row that an unranked St. John’s team has been able to get the better of a nationally ranked Hofstra team. The Red Storm and Hofstra were locked in a back and forth affair all afternoon as neither team could gather any momentum. Both team’s combined for an offensive explosion in the first 30 minutes of action, as St. John’s and Hofstra combined for 14 goals and went into the half tied at seven. McArdle scored five of his six goals in the first hald in the midst of his record setting day. The score would be tied at 10 at the end of regulation as the game headed to over time. In the overtime period McArdle would score his sixth and final goal on the day, a goal which won the game for St. John’s. St. John’s will try and extend their two game winning streak on the road against Stony Brook on March 22 at 1 p.m.
TORCH PHOTO/SARAH HOWARD
Kieran McArdle scored a career-high six goals versus the Hofstra Pride.
Home cooking for the Red Storm Don’t look now, but St. John’s baseball is rolling.
BRANDON MAUK Contributing Writer
After slumping to a losing record on the road, the Red Storm has won six in a row back at Jack Kaiser Stadium. They beat Fairfield 7-3 on Tuesday to improve to 9-10 on the season.
TORCHPHOTO/ CHEYANNE GONZALES
The Baseball team has won six-straight games at Jack Kaiser Stadium.
The Red Storm’s pitching shined, as three Johnnies combined for 16 strikeouts, eight by starter Alex Katz in four innings. At the dish, slugger Matt Harris led the way with three hits and two runs driven to add to his team-leading 17 RBI on the season. Shortstop Jarred Mederos went 2-for-3 with two RBI of his own. Bret Dennis also had two hits and scored twice, raising his team-leading batting average to .478. St. John’s managed to push across three runs in the first two innings on just one hit, and RBI single by freshman Troy Dixon. They then blew the game open in the sixth, scoring four runs on five hits. After an error by Fairfield third baseman Dean Sadik, Harris hit a booming two run triple to make it 6-0. Mederos followed
with a RBI of his own, making it 7-0. Fairfield did manage to put three on the board in the seventh after an error and a two-run single by Jack Giannini. However, they would go no further, as reliever Joe Kuzia shut the door, striking out two to end the threat in the inning. He would close the game out, as he allowed just one hit and struck out four in two and two-third innings. Shawn Heide grabbed his second win of the season in relief. St. John’s wraps up its ten-game home stand this week, facing off against LIU Brooklyn on Wednesday and hosting a three game series this weekend against James Madison at Jack Kaiser Stadium.
To stay up-to-date on athletics at St. John’s, follow: @Torchsports or head to: torchonline.com/sports
Beza’s shutout lifts Johnnies over Big ALLAN GOMEZ Staff Writer
Senior pitcher Ashley Beza’s strong pitching performance guided St. John’s shutout win over Cornell, 4-0, expanding its winning streak to three straight games. ST. JOHN’S
The Johnnies (11-13) had contributions all over as they responded back after dropping the opening game. Everything that head coach Kvihaug talked about last week, the Johnnies were able to implement this week with strong pitching and timely hitting. “We came out and took care of business; everyone contributed all over,” Kvilhaug said. “We’re happy with our play this weekend.” Kvilaug said. Ashley Beza was the story of the game and the weekend, going 2-0 tossing back-to-back shutouts. She pitched seven innings, allowing just three hits to earn the win against Cornell. “I felt good going in and my previous outings,” Beza said. “I was able to use my curveball and riseball.” The Johnnies got things rolling in the
Since Providence won its first Big East Tournament since 1994 and the inaugural tournament in the new realigned conference, many St. John’s fans have been saying “That could’ve been us!” or “We could’ve won the Big East Tournament.” And the answer is simple: No. No Red Storm fans, your favorite team could not have seen the same fate as the Friars. While the matchup consisted of two pretty even teams, the Red Storm were far away from Ed Cooley’s crew. St. John’s lacked many things: the inability to get over the hump, a consistent rotation and - most of all - a killer instinct, the same plagues that have been hindering the Johnnies since Nov. 2011. The entire year the Red Storm could never get over the hump and take the bull by the horns. See the Syracuse and two Villanova games, where the Red Storm
Leavin’ their Mark Fitzgerald and Beza earn spots on honor roll
TORCH PHOTO/DIANA COLAPIETRO
The softball team is all smiles as they ride a three game winning-streak
second inning as freshman utility player Monique Landini drove in Fitzgerald with an RBI single to put the Johnnies up 1-0. Later in the frame, sophomore designated hitter Carly Williams 2-for-3 drove in Landini with a RBI double to make it 2-0. “Today was a great game. we were really good from A-to-Z,” Kvilhaug said. “We were able to swing the bats well, have timely hitting and able to steal bases and our defense played fantastic.” St. John’s was able to score once more in the third inning with Fitzgerald RBI double driving in senior Jackie Reed 1-for-4. The Johnnies tacked on one more run in the six-inning when Williams’ RBI single to drive in
freshman left fielder Brittany Garcia 1-for-2. “Carly is stepping and having more consistent at-bats,” Kvilhaug said. “For her to come in I am happy with per performance.” As St. John’s rides a three game winning streak, the Johnnies were also able to take home some awards by sweeping the Big East Weekly awards for their play at the USF-Under Armor showcase. Fitzgerald earned the Big East player of the week and sophomore pitcher Tori Free took home Big East pitcher of the week honors. The Johnnies will finally play in Jamaica on March 20 against Manhattan at 2 p.m.
Jon on Johnnies: NIT is just right for SJU JON PEREZ
had the lead in and were out-played in the late stages in the second half. Or how about the home Xavier game? That was the prime opportunity for the Red Storm to put itself in the NCAA tournament and they simply blew it. It took until the middle of January for Steve Lavin to establish one consistent lineup, and once the cards stopped being shuffled the team had lost its first five games. Once that lineup was set, the Red Storm were in cruise control. It also helped that the tougher part of the schedule was already gone and they managed to knock off No. 12 Creighton for the team’s first and only signature win. Of course there is that last quality that the Red Storm will need to implement next year, and that’s the killer instinct. The 2010-11 team and this year’s team are like comparing apples and oranges, but you could see the hunger of Dwight Hardy, Justin Burrell, Paris Horne, DJ Kennedy and Malik Boothe when they took the floor. When
TORCH PHOTO/DIANA COLAPIETRO
St. John’s failed to salvage the season with an NIT run.
they were on the court with Duke, Notre Dame, Villanova and UConn, the Red Storm put them to bed early. This year’s team hangs around for 35 minutes and it’s a coin flip the rest of the way. Take this as a point of reference. When the Red Storm overcame a 17-point deficit and got within one point of the Friars, the Red Storm got the stop they needed and had a two on one with freshman Rysheed Jordan and sophomore JaKarr Sampson on the push. Sampson scooped up the loose change, passed to Jordan who passed it back to Sampson who looked like he wanted no part of that shot and blew the layup. If the situation was reversed and it was Bryce Cotton and LaDontae Henton making the run, the ball handler would’ve taken the shot. Or even to stay in the same program, Dwight Hardy would’ve never passed that ball like Sampson did. These group of players are not clutch. They didn’t rise to the occasion when they needed to and are in the NIT for the second consecutive year. The Friars were hungry, they had players who weren’t afraid to lose and instead of updating every bracketology board and calculate how many wins the team needed, Ed Cooley’s team went out and just won the tournament. The Red Storm said that winning the tournament was the goal, but there’s not one team in the conference that didn’t have winning the tournament as its goal. So unless the Red Storm gain that same killer instinct on the court that the 2010-11 team had or the Big East champions had, it’ll be a disappointing class.
Freshman Kaitlin Fitzgerald found herself on the Big East honor roll for the second consecutive week after a big weekend at the Delaware Spring Invitational. Joining Fitzgerald on the honor roll was senior Ashely Beza after her shutout victory against Cornell. Fitzgerald tore the cover off the ball, hitting .417 (5-for-12) with a couple of doubles, six RBI and a game-winning double against Robert Morris Beza had a pretty impressive weekend as well. Aside from the shutout, Beza tossed a total 17.0 innings, while striking out 10 batters in her 100th career appearance at St. John’s.
Blowin’ in the Wind “Going there two years in a row as a head coach is obviously exciting, but also for our program, five years in a row is such a great testament to the players that have come through here and the coaches and staffs that have guided them. This is something that has been our goal all year, so we’re excited to get back in there and face USC.” -Joe Tartamella
Headin’ this Way
Red Storm upcoming schedule
Women’s Basketball Mar. 22
Softball Mar. 20
Dancin’ Queens! Ladies No. 9 seed. PG. 13
SPORTS MARCH 19 2014 | VOLUME 91, ISSUE 20 |
END OF THE ROAD
JOHNNIES END SEASON WITH FIRST-ROUND NIT OUSTER
PG. 13 TORCH PHOTO/DIANA COLAPIETRO
There was a bar on campus?