Towsonâ€™s campus and community news source
March 27, 2018
The enduring legacy of two Towson club sports, pg. 20
Photo by Karuga Koinange, Photo Illustration by Victoria Nicholson /The Towerlight
March 27, 2018
ONECARD USE IT FOR EVERYTHING TOWSON.EDU/ONECARD
HANNAH RDEODNTRIGUEZ STU
March 27, 2018
Editor-in-Chief Marcus Dieterle Senior Editor Jordan Cope News Editor Bailey Hendricks Asst. News Editor Mary-Ellen Davis Assoc. Arts & Life Editor Kerry Ingram Asst. Arts & Life Editor McKenna Graham Sports Editor Karuga Koinange Asst. Sports Editor Billy Owens
Senior Staff Writer Sarah Rowan
Leah Volpe Keri Luise Rohan Mattu Muhammad Waheed Deb Greengold Sophia Bates
Assoc. Photo Editor Brendan Felch
Staff Photographers Jordan Cope
Lacey Wall Joe Noyes David Kirchner Tiffany Deboer Isaiah Freeman Lexi Thompson
Sarah Rowan General Manager Mike Raymond Art Director Victoria Nicholson
NEW YORK TIMES TALK
Noon, University Union, Loch Raven Room.
Marcus Dieterle Brittany Whitham
Proofreaders Alex Best
In this workshop users will learn how to create and grade assignments, tests, discussion boards and discover other features that Blackboard has to offer.
This group is focused on bringing first-generation college students together for support as they navigate the challenges that come with higher education.
5 p.m., University Union, Room 313.
David Fisher Simon Enagonio
Amanda Jean Thomas Katerina Duerr
BLACKBOARD - TESTS AND ASSIGNMENTS
10 a.m., Cook Library, Room 404 A.
Jill Gattens Jessica Ricks
Meg Hudson Albert Ivory
Staff Writers Desmond Boyle
Senior Staff Photographer Alex Best
Students, faculty and staff are welcome to join as the Office of Civic Engagement and Social Responsibility host the New York Times Talk. Students are encouraged to get engaged with prevalent social occurrences across the globe. Towson University students will be volunteering with Pickersgill, a retirement community in the area. Volunteers will be playing Pokeno with residents.
VOLUNTEER AT PICKERSGILL
10 a.m., Administration Building, Room 224.
ASIA’S HEALING ARTS
Explore the diverse healing arts of Asia which are now popular worldwide. Yoga, taiji, acupuncture and more are part of this exhibition.
1 p.m., John B. Schuerholz Park.
Webmaster Circulation Staff Shawn Halerz Dom Capparuccini Elssa Kenfack
8000 York Road University Union Room 309 Towson, MD 21252 (410) 704-5153 email@example.com thetowerlight.com The Towerlight print edition is published by students of Towson University on Tuesdays. The Towerlight is owned by nonprofit Baltimore Student Media Inc., BaltimoreStudentMedia.com. The Towerlight’s advertising deadlines are firm: Wednesday noon for space; Friday noon for art. Classifieds appear online and in print and are self-service at TheTowerlight.com/classifieds. We encourage letters to the editor and online feedback. Commentaries, letters to the editor, editorial cartoons and other editorials express the opinions of their authors and not necessarily the views of the newspaper. The Towerlight does not discriminate based on age, color, condition of handicap, marital status, national origin, race, religion, gender or sexual orientation. ©2018 by The Towerlight, 8000 York Rd, Towson, MD 21252. All rights reserved.
TRENDING. @rkscout48 Proud to be marching in support of #Guncontrol at #MarchforOurLives with @CollegeDemsMD and @ TU_Democrats!
@eggzachtlyy we repping towson in philly
MORE EVENTS CAN BE FOUND AT
MARCH FOR OUR LIVES
this march made me have hope for the future, and I will never forget the strength and unity I felt today.
@ericatimchula because enough is enough. VOTE THEM OUT. THE MONEY THE NRA IS GETTING IS COVERED IN OUR CHILDREN’S BLOOD.
March 27, 2018
The blue wave Let their stories be told continues to grow Gun reform takes center stage in the United States The Towerlight editorial board
Hundreds of thousands of protesters attended the March for Our Lives in Washington, D.C., on March 24 to advocate for gun reform. Activists denounced the NRA and condemned politicians who receive money from the organization. Marchers, including several survivors of the Feb. 14, shooting that occurred at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, demanded that such violence #NeverAgain happen. Not even a week before the march, a male student at Great Mills High School opened fire on his fellow students. The gunman died after being confronted by an armed school resource officer, but not before shooting and injuring two students. One of those injured students, 16-year-old Jaelynn Willey, died on March 22. Willey was a competitive swimmer and had seven younger siblings, according to BuzzFeed News. The #NeverAgain movement has reignited the push for gun control and elevated that fight to a level of visibility that we have yet to see in a while – and arguably, ever. What these young people have done is not just remarkable in the scope of gun reform; it’s a lesson
in democracy and a message of hope for the upcoming generation of voters. The #NeverAgain movement leaders are deserving of all the praise coming to them. But so are the black and brown activists who have and continue to fight every day to create a world where #BlackLivesMatter. 11-year-old Naomi Wadler called on march attendees and #NeverAgain movement supporters as a whole to fight for the black lives who aren’t given as much attention as their white counterparts. "I am here today to acknowledge and represent the African American girls whose stories don't make the front page of every national newspaper.... For far too long, these names, these black girls and women have been just numbers,” Wadler said. “I'm here to say ‘never again’ for those girls too." David Hogg, a survivor of the MSD shooting and one of the leaders of the #NeverAgain movement, spoke at a D.C. high school the day before the march where he addressed how some media organizations provide biased coverage or no coverage at all when the victims of violence are people of color. “Many of these [non-white] communities are disproportionately affected by gun violence, but they don’t get the same share of media attention that we
do,” he said. As journalists, we’re told our job is “to give a voice to the voiceless.” But that’s just flat out wrong. People of color and other marginalized people have strong voices of their own – they’re just not being listened to. There are many news organizations who are putting in the work to truly provide fair and balanced coverage, particularly of those marginalized voices. But I would be remiss to think that’s the case across the board. Courtlin Arrington was an Alabama high school senior who had planned to go to nursing school before being fatally shot on March 7. She deserves to have her story told. Stephon Clark was an unarmed father of two who was shot and killed by police in his own backyard on March 18. He deserves to have his story told. Phylicia Mitchell, an Ohio transwoman who worked as a hair stylist, was killed on Feb. 23. She deserves to have her story told. And not just told, but learned from to spark the same kind of momentous change for people of color who are the victims of gun violence and other forms of violence as the victims of the MSD shooting have sparked across the nation.
PHOTO OF THE WEEK
Ryan Kirby/ The Towerlight Towerlight columnist Ryan Kirby (left) attended the March for Our Lives event in Washington, D.C.
RYAN KIRBY Columnist
On March 13, 2018, Pennsylvania voters from the 18th congressional district went to the polls to pick who would hold the seat after Rep. Tim Murphy resigned. Murphy, a pro-life Republican, resigned on Oct. 21, 2017, after it was revealed that he asked his mistress to have an abortion. The 18th congressional district is incredibly safe for Republicans. Trump won the district by 20 points in 2016. Murphy went unopposed in the past two elections, and he crushed the last opponent he had by 28 points in 2012. One would expect that Republicans should hold on to the seat without any problems. Spoiler alert: Democrat Conor Lamb was able to overcome the 20 point Republican advantage and win the district by just 627 votes. So what can we learn from this election? First of all, this is yet another case of how every vote counts. I cannot stress this enough. It doesn't matter if you live in a Republican stronghold like I do. Your vote counts and your vote matters. This election also showed that Democrats need to have a 50 state strategy. There are 119 districts held by Republicans that are more liberal than PA-18. We won't win all 119 races, but if we don't fund them, give them access to resources and volunteer our time for them, then we won't be able to take back the House. A lot of Republicans have tried to spin the election as a fluke because Lamb was a conservative and Saccone ran a terrible campaign. Lamb ran against Nancy Pelosi, against the Republican tax scam, and for universal healthcare.
Sure, he wasn't Bernie Sanders, but he definitely wasn't a conservative. Both candidates were well within the range of normal candidates. Any attempt by Republicans to declare this race as insignificant is just spin. My biggest takeaway from the election is actually not the result, but the strategy that the GOP used. For the weeks of Feb. 4 and 11, two-thirds of the ads the GOP aired mentioned taxes. However, during that time Lamb continued to make up ground on Saccone, and polls showed a dead heat. The tax message became less frequent and by March, were nonexistent. Instead the GOP decided to air ads about sanctuary cities and MS-13 crime. For the record, PA-18 has no documented crime related to MS-13. According to Paul Ryan, the tax cuts were supposed to save the Republican majorities. The PA-18 election shows that the GOP tax cuts are not going to be as helpful as they would have liked. Instead, the new rallying cry of the GOP seems to rely on stoking fears about crime and immigration. To me, this signals a dramatic shift away from traditional Republican orthodoxy as Reaganism disappears and Trump reshapes the Republican party in his image. Republicans had better prepare themselves for the 2018 election. Democrats are fired up and ready to vote. There are a countless races that are more liberal than PA-18 and Democrats are planning to fight in every single one (I'm looking at you, Governor Hogan). It is time we put candidates in office who will fight for progressive values.
March 27, 2018
Biased districting TU Athletics deserves more credit in Pennsylvania TIM LEONARD Towson University Athletic Director
CONNOR McNAIRN Columnist
The United States Constitution is riddled with vague language and a plethora of ambiguities, all of which complicate the collective interpretations of the document. The Constitution separates powers between the legislative, executive and judicial branches, each of which is tasked with making, enforcing and interpreting the laws, respectively. But what happens when the legislature contests the way that the judiciary interprets a law? Which branch’s stance prevails in such a conflict? While there is no clear and certain answer to this question, the current debates in Pennsylvania regarding the constitutionality of gerrymandering may establish a lasting precedent. The case of importance – League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania – originated in June 2017 and concentrated on the constitutionality of partisan gerrymandering in the state. The plaintiffs (League of Women Voters) claimed that the state’s 2011 congressional map so blatantly favored the Republican Party that Democratic voters were deprived their Free Expression and Association rights enumerated in Article I of the state constitution. The plaintiffs argued that the state’s overly partisan 2011 district design should be discarded for future use and that the Pennsylvania General Assembly, the body tasked with drawing district lines per the U.S. Census, should refrain from using political data (registration, affiliation, membership, etc.) when drawing maps in future, as this information could specifically harm particular groups of voters. In January 2018, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled in favor of the League of Women, finding that the 2011 district map was unconstitutional. Moreover, the court also ruled that the General Assembly submit a new district map by Feb. 15. Naturally, the Pennsylvania legislature failed to submit a new district map within the three-week deadline, and in response, the court released its
own district design, which was drawn by Stanford professor Nathan Persily. Because the court-issued map aims to increase political equality in the state, Republican lawmakers have repeatedly challenged the judicial act. After facing two U.S. Supreme Court rejections, Pennsylvania Republicans have taken their challenge a step further. State lawmakers have actually moved to impeach the state’s Supreme Court justices. According to State Rep. Cris Dush, who is joined by a handful of Republican colleagues, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court waited far too long to release its opinion on the 2011 map design; in fact, while the lawmakers were given three weeks to redraw the districts, the court waited until two days before the Feb. 15 deadline to issue its official opinion. What is more, the main thrust behind Dush’s impeachment push concentrates on the state Supreme Court’s supposed infringement of legislative processes. According to Dush and other Republicans, by releasing its own district map, the court fundamentally violated the Pennsylvania General Assembly’s right to draw and establish representative districts. To some Republican representatives, the Court unconstitutionally and unilaterally enforced a plan of action that ought to be decided by the legislature. But what institution ought to draw districts when the body originally tasked with the responsibility proves derelict? While Dush and other Republicans maintain a strong stance on the issue, House Republican Leader Dave Reed argued that while the judiciary’s move is provocative and wrong, “disagreement over the outcome of any particular case should not be grounds for impeachment.” Aside from establishing tremendous precedent with regard to the future of gerrymandering and state representation, this case questions what remains of political civility in an increasingly partisan republic. Thus far, few judicial decisions, both at the state and federal levels, have motivated impeachment proceedings. - To read the rest of this column online, visit thetowerlight.com.
I am writing in response to your opinion article describing the performance of the Towson University (TU) athletics department. You are correct, we have not recently achieved our competition goals in football and men’s basketball. In these two sports, our goal is the NCAA postseason. The TU athletics department is committed to achieve these goals and we are confident in our programs heading into the 201819 athletic seasons. Your piece omits the success of other programs, including men’s and women’s lacrosse. Our men’s lacrosse team has won three-straight Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) championships, reached the NCAA quarterfinals in 2016 and advanced to the Championship Weekend in 2017. Our women’s lacrosse program has won four of the last six CAA championships and advanced to the
NCAA Tournament in eight of the last 10 years. In addition, our volleyball program has gone 104-26 over the past four years [Editors Note: Jordan Cope had mentioned the success of the University’s volleyball program in the regular season, but noted its postseason struggles] and swimmer Jack Saunderson just earned All-American honors for a second-straight year. UMBC earned its trip to the NCAA Tournament and its historic win against Virginia is inspiring. As you know, TU men’s basketball has beaten UMBC in each of the last five seasons. In addition to our winning streak against UMBC, we have beaten Morgan State five-straight seasons, Loyola each of the last three seasons and the last three games against Coppin State. In head-tohead competition, TU earned the title of Greater Baltimore’s premier men’s basketball program. In other head-to-head competition
against UMBC, our men’s lacrosse and women’s basketball teams have won seven-straight games against the Retrievers, and our women’s lacrosse team has won six straight. In addition to our commitment to athletic competition, TU athletics is committed to academic success and community engagement. We are proud to have the highest graduation success rate in the University System of Maryland (USM) and our student-athletes have completed over 10,000 community service hours for the fifth consecutive year. Our mission in TU athletics is to produce student-athletes who are champions in competition, in the classroom and in the community. I invite you to the Towson Center to sit down and discuss your opinions on the Towson University athletics department and learn more of our comprehensive commitment to our student-athlete experience. Go Tigers!
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March 27, 2018
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March 27, 2018
Cox shares story of transition and triumph BAILEY HENDRICKS News Editor @imsimplybailey
When Laverne Cox was in the third grade, she went to Six Flags on a church trip and brought a “very little bit” of spending money for the park gift shop, Cox said. “The moment I walked into the crowded gift shop, there it was,” she said. “Hanging there. A handheld fan. It had peacocks on it. It was fabulous. The moment I saw this handheld fan, I knew I had to have it.” Cox spoke to members of the Towson University community in SECU Arena on March 13 as part of the Division of Student Affairs’ Diversity Speaker Series. A few weeks prior to visiting Six Flags, Cox had watched “Gone with the Wind.” After she returned from the trip with her new fan in tow, Cox spun around her third grade classroom, fanning herself in true Scarlett O’Hara fashion. Cox’s third-grade teacher, Ms. Ridgeway, said “Come here and bring that thing with you.” Ms. Ridgeway marched Cox down to the classroom of Ms. Farely, a fifth-grade teacher in Cox’s elementary school. “Show her what you were doing with that thing,” Ridgeway said to Cox. “Okay. Stop. Now go back to class.” Cox’s mother received a call following this incident, and took her child to a therapist. Cox said she remembers sitting in the therapist’s office, and the therapist asked her if she knew what the difference was between a boy and a girl. “And in my infinite wisdom as a third-grader — because third-graders are so wise, right? — I said ‘there is no difference,’” Cox said. Cox said everyone was telling her that she was a boy, even though she knew she was a girl. “I knew in my heart and my soul and my spirit that I was a girl,” she said. “So, I reasoned that there must not be any difference.” Cox started to go to therapy, and although she assumed her mother wouldn’t know what she told the therapist, she did. Cox didn’t have therapist-patient confidentiality as a third-grader. When Cox’s mother found out what Cox was saying to the therapist, she yelled at Cox and insisted that she was a boy. “It was another moment in my childhood where I was deeply
shamed for something that felt really natural for me,” Cox said. “When I look back, there’s something kind of adorable about a third-grader wanting to fan themselves like Scarlett O’Hara, right?” After a few more sessions, her therapist suggested she get injected with testosterone to make her more masculine. Cox’s mother didn’t feel right about injecting her third-grader with testosterone, and took her out of therapy. “So, the therapy was discontinued, but the damage was done,” Cox said. In sixth grade, Cox started to go through puberty. She described it as a “confusing and tricky” time for her. “I remember going to bed every night and praying to God ‘please don’t let me wake up and turn me into a man,’” she said. “The idea of that was horrifying to me.” But Cox went through puberty and realized she was attracted to boys. She felt shame because she was told in church that such attraction was a sin. In sixth-grade Cox’s grandmother passed away, adding a layer of pain to her adolescent life. “When she passed away, it was a very difficult time for me and my family,” Cox said. “She was an incredible woman. She raised 10 kids basically by herself.” One night when Cox was grieving her grandmother’s loss, she lay in bed and couldn’t sleep. As she lay there, she imagined her grandmother was looking down on her. Cox also imagined her grandmother knew every single thought she was having, including the thoughts she was having about boys. “And in my mind, she was extremely disappointed in me having those thoughts,” she said. “I had learned in church that even the thought is a sin. And so, the idea of disappointing her made me not want to live. So, I went to our medicine cabinet, took an entire bottle of pills, and swallowed them. I went to sleep hoping not to wake up.” When Cox woke up and survived, she promised herself she would suppress her feelings about boys to make her mother and grandmother proud. According to the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey, 40 percent of transgender people reported having attempted suicide, nine times the national rate at the time. In her efforts to suppress her gender and sexuality in middle school, Cox stayed busy and became an overachiever. She was a straight-A student, member of the National Junior Honor Society, countywide
Lexi Thompson/ The Towerlight
Laverne Cox spoke at Towson University’s SECU Arena March 13 about her journey as a transgender woman during the SGA’s Pride Fest week and the Division of Student Affairs’ Diversity Speaker Series. public speaking champion in eighth grade, and vice president of the student council. “[Becoming vice president of the student council] still, to this day, is pretty remarkable because the student body voted for me and if you recall, they didn’t like me,” she said. “They bullied me, they made fun of me.” Cox decided she wanted to go to the Alabama School of Fine Arts. She loved to dance, but her mother didn’t let her take ballet growing up, and the ASFA only offered ballet in their dance program. She knew she also needed a scholarship. So, Cox got a scholarship through creative writing and later switched her major to dance. While at the ASFA, Cox started being able to express herself more by customizing her own clothes she would find at Goodwill and The Salvation Army, and she started wearing makeup. “I remember I had this pair of polyester leopard print bell-bottoms,” she said. “They were so cute. They pooled on the floor behind me as I walked down the hallway in the Alabama School of Fine Arts. They were quite the hit in homeroom.” After she graduated from the ASFA, Cox went to Indiana University for two years with a dance and academic scholarship. She then transferred to Marymount Manhattan College in New York City. During her time in New York City, Cox began to learn more about her sexuality and gender. “I continued to be a pretty good
student at Marymount, but my education really happened in the nightclub scene of New York City,” she said. When Cox would go to the huge nightclubs in New York City in the 90s, there would be a line around the corner, and often people didn’t get in at all. Often you got to go in based on how you looked, Cox said. Cox would go to the front of the line and never had to wait, pay to get in, and would often get free drinks even though she didn’t drink at the time. “It was the first time in my life that my gender expression was looked upon as something that was valuable, that meant I should cut to the front of the line,” she said. “And it was an amazing, incredible time for me. And some of the people that I would meet in the nightclub scene would change my life.” Cox became friends with Tina Sparkles, who she met in the city’s nightclub scene. When Cox first met Sparkles, she noticed the acne on her skin, but also said she was “one of the sweetest queens you would meet.” “Over the next several years of knowing Tina Sparkles, I watched her transform. I watched her transition from a statuesque pain to a beautiful, elegant, sophisticated woman – with flawless skin, thank you very much. Flawless…. I remember saying to myself, ‘If Tina can do this, what can I do?’” Cox said if it weren’t for Tina Sparkles and all of the transgender women she met in the nightclub scene of New York City, she might not have ended up going to get her
first hormone shot to start her medical transition. “I just got to a point where I was sick of lying to myself,” she said. “I was sick of not being in the truth. I think we all get to a point in our lives where we can no longer lie to ourselves, so we have to stand in our truths and begin to manifest that truth outwardly. I hope all of you are in that space now today, where you can live in your truth. And if you’re not there yet, you’ll get there. It’s a process, it’s a search.” Cox reminded the crowd that not all transgender people are as celebrated as Cox was this night by the audience. According to the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs, trans women of color experience the highest rates of violence within the LGBTQ+ community. “In 2017, we saw more reported homicides of transgender people than we ever have since we’ve been tracking the murders of trans folks,” Cox said. The unemployment rate in the transgender community is three times the national average, and four times the national average for trans people of color, according to the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey. According to the survey, 47 percent of all transgender people have reported experiencing sexual assault. “If you are a transgender person in this country, far too often you are under attack,” she said. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com.
March 27, 2018
First-ever Pride Fest finishes Univ. considers
parking counters Could save students and faculty time finding spots MATTHEW BENDER Contributing Writer
Katarina Duerr/ The Towerlight
SGA President James Mileo poses at the first-ever Pride Fest’s closing ceremony and rally March 15. Pride Fest featured a week of events to celebrate Towson University’s LGBTQ+ community. KERI LUISE Staff Writer
Administrators and student leaders demonstrated their support for members of Towson University’s LGBTQ+ community at a closing ceremony and peace rally on March 15 in Freedom Square, marking the end to TU’s first-ever Pride Fest. Student Government Association President James Mileo called on Towson community members to educate themselves about the complexity and intersectionality within the LGBTQ+ community beyond white gay men. Mileo also urged allies to actively demonstrate their support by combating homophobia, transphobia, racism, sexism and other forms of prejudice whenever they witness it. “Pride has and forever will be a fire within this community to continue our fight for equality and the right to exist in straight cis spaces without the fear of being discriminated against, marginalized, or physically threatened,” Mileo said. Pride Fest spanned from March 2 to 15, and it featured several events including documentary screenings, social gatherings, giveaways and opportunities to decorate the campus with LGBTQ+ pride. Members of Towson University’s LGBTQ+ community, Student Government Association, Center for Student Diversity and Office of Civic Engagement and Social Responsibility organized Pride Fest to celebrate the LGBTQ+ community and increase their visibility on campus. SGA Director of Communications Kaitlyn McClanahan said Pride Fest was meant to educate the Towson community about their LGBTQ+ peers.
“All of the events gave students an insight or information about the queer community,” McClanahan said. On March 12, the SGA held a Pride Fest Celebration and resource fair for students to learn more about the LGBTQ+ community and receive free giveaways. “The resource fair offered an opportunity for people to play queer trivia to get a free shirt and a paper with queer-related and mental-health related resources,” said freshman Frank Biggs, a Pride Fest planning committee member. “Other student organizations like SAPE and QSU set up their own tables and offered their own resources.” Students and other members of the Towson community packed into SECU Arena on March 13 to see actress and LGBTQ+ advocate Laverne Cox, who visited TU’s campus to share her story of triumph and the issues facing black trans people in today’s community. “My favorite part of the show was when she would talk about her childhood,” Biggs said. “I think it’s really important for non-trans allies to understand what childhood is like for people struggling with their identity expression.” Pride Fest also highlighted the experiences of being black and queer in today’s world. There has been a push for more acceptance of people of color in the LGBTQ+ community. “The Black Student Union hosted an event and spoke about being queer in the black community,” Biggs said. “The meeting consisted of queer terminology and issues facing the queer community specifically.” Some members of Towson’s LGBTQ+ community believe that
Towson University can and should be doing more to promote LGBTQ+ acceptance on campus. CSD Associate Director of Student Diversity & Development Mario Rodriguez said TU should “have students, faculty and staff continue to attend programs, be inclusive and attend an ally training or a LGBTQ+ program or event.” Some TU organizations are making a push for campus to be more welcoming to students from all kinds of backgrounds and identities. “Aside from the social aspects of Pride Fest, students were able to receive support resources, hotlines, and LGBTQ+ support group information,” McClanahan said. “[TU President Kim Schatzel] mentioned that this time next year, there will be more LGBTQ+ policies in place for students.” During the closing ceremony, GenderBlur Vice President Noah Barr called on Towson Univesity to implement a “preferred name policy” so students and other community members could go by a chosen name other than their legal name. GenderBlur is a student group for transgender and non-binary individuals. “In the case of trans students who already go by a chosen name, each time their legal name is used by the University, it outs the student, exposing them to risk,” Barr said. They said legally changing one’s name to match a preferred name creates an economic barrier for many trans people who cannot afford a legal name change or could be shunned by their family if they change their name. - Marcus Dieterle contributed to this story. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com.
With Towson’s student body increasing and the parking garages on campus receiving more use, SGA President James Mileo and SGA Vice President Breya Johnson sent a request to the University to have electric parking counters installed in Towson’s parking garages. Towson University originally denied the SGA’s request to add electric parking counters into parking garages around campus, but is now reconsidering the possibility of adding them on campus. “At the request of the Interim VP for Finance, Bob Campbell, we are relooking at counters and pulling together some cost estimates for various types as well as considering a webinar to learn more,” Associate Vice President of Auxiliary Services Daniel Slattery said in an email. Electric parking counters use sensors under each individual parking spot to monitor whether parking spots are occupied or open. Garages that have these parking counters display the number of spots open on each garage floor based on readings from the sensors to help people find parking spots. At the Student Fees Open Forum on Feb. 8, Slattery said the University is looking into adding parking counters to the University’s parking garages. “As you know, auxiliaries are self-supporting,” Slattery said. “We don’t get any money from the state on this, so it must come out of the
parking fees charged to students, faculty and staff to support the operation. As for the driving around and looking for parking, we are currently looking into the electronic counters to aid and assist everyone looking for spaces.” Director of Parking and Transportation Services Pamela Mooney said the University is considering establishing parking counters, but that nothing has been finalized. “As Mr. Slattery indicated at the meeting, we are again looking at counter systems,” Mooney said. “At this point, we are only gathering the latest information and there has been no decision on whether or not to purchase a system.” Some students around campus support the possible implementation of parking counters in garages. Adrian Bell, a commuter student, said she hopes the University moves forward with installing the electronic parking counters. “I live in West Village and drive to York [Road Building] everyday and go floor to floor looking for a free spot,” Bell said. “It’s really annoying blindly driving around the garage hoping to find a place to park. Having parking counters would save me so much time.” Towson student Jerry Smith also sees the benefit of adding counters to on-campus parking garages. “I don’t have a car on campus but I can see how it would save a lot of time for student drivers,” Smith said. “I hope Towson finds a compromise and adds these to the garages.” - Sophia Bates contributed to this story.
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Electronic parking counters could be added to Towson’s parking garages to make it easier for people to find open parking spaces.
March 27, 2018
Prof. creates weather app Feminist club ANTHONY PETRO Contributing Writer
A 2015 Towson alum and current adjunct professor developed an application that will turn your alarm clock off when school is cancelled or delayed. Jal Irani graduated from Towson University in 2015 with a bachelor’s degree in computer science, and then received his master’s degree from Johns Hopkins. After a trip to Bill Bateman’s Bistro with a few friends during his senior year, Irani went to a friend’s house. That night, Irani and his friend Audrey came up with an idea for an application called SleepIn. SleepIn allows the user to connect the app to their school’s alert system and their alarm clock app, so if any closures or delays occur, SleepIn will turn their alarm off. “SleepIn is my baby,” Irani said. “It launched earlier this year (December 2017) and has around 600-700 downloads now.” Irani said the app references two separate databases to get accurate information about your school’s clo-
sure or delay. “I had a proud parent moment when I downloaded SleepIn and it worked,” said computer science professor Josh Dehlinger. Dehlinger taught Irani when he was an undergrad. “[Irani] told me about the idea a year ago,” Dehlinger said. “It was a small idea, but he was very excited when it released.” Nilashree Shirodkar, a junior studying for her master’s degree in applied information technology, has Irani as her professor in a server side programming course. “I think he has done a great job by developing this application,” Shirodkar said. “It is a help for students and it feels great to see an app up in running that we have had discussions about during our classes.” Irani has developed two other applications on his own, another with the University, and even runs a mobile contracting company called Apptzr. “I always consider him as my mentor whom I can count on,” Shirodkar said. The other apps he has developed
include Corrie Health, SmartAddress and Wavy Leaf. Corrie Health is an app designed to remind patients recovering from cardiac problems to take their medication. SmartAddress is an app Irani launched in January 2017 designed to allow the user to save addresses of their current location and then compare Uber and Lyft rates to this location in the future or other locations. Irani worked on the app Wavy Leaf with Dehlinger while studying as an undergraduate student. According to Dehlinger, this app was created as a joint project with the biology department as a way to map and track invasive species. Irani’s company Apptzr is a mobile contracting company that designs applications for bars and restaurants. These apps allow these places to digitize and then solve and process everyday problems. As Irani said, SleepIn is his “baby” though. Currently it is only available in Maryland, but updates occur regularly, and Irani hopes to expand the app’s radius.
makes comeback ALBERT IVORY Staff Writer
The Feminist Collective, an on-campus organization which focuses on unpacking myths about feminism and examines women’s empowerment and leadership, is relaunching after being inactive for the past two years. Brenda Oduola, a graduate assistant for the Center for Student Diversity’s Women’s Resources Department, and CSD Associate Director for Student Diversity and Development Mahoor Ahmed hosted an interest meeting on March 14 to brainstorm and restart the program. Ahmed said that one of the reasons they wanted to have the interest meeting was to gauge how the club plans to grow and prosper. “The idea was that the other people who were involved hadn’t stepped up to take on leadership roles in order for the group to be
a formal student organization,” Ahmed said. She said that in previous years, the Feminist Collective had weekly meetings which turned into biweekly meetings and later turned into monthly meetings. The group also hosted presentations, Feminism 101 workshops for the general public, fundraisers and other events. During some meetings, members would find an article or a book related to feminism and have a discussion based on the source. One of the biggest events the Feminist Collective put together in the past was a production of “The Vagina Monologues.” This year’s performance of “The Vagina Monologues” was held on March 9 and 10, and it was sponsored by the CSD and Office of Student Activities. All proceeds went to the House of Ruth Maryland. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com.
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What is Love Baltimore? Love Baltimore started in response to the Baltimore riots in response to Freddie Gray’s death. Cru saw how the riots not only affected Baltimore, but Towson as well. We realized we could make a difference.
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12 March 27, 2018
Arts & Life
Kevin Hart brings laughter to MD The Irresponsible Tour visits Baltimore KERRY INGRAM Assoc. Arts & Life Editor
There’s not a lot of comedians that can truly make me laugh, but Kevin Hart manages to get tears and cackles out of me every single time he speaks. Saturday night was no exception. Hart brought his latest comedy tour, The Irresponsible Tour, to Baltimore Friday night, performing to a reportedly sold out Royal Farms arena. The show, which is his sixth comedic tour, was explained by Hart as being inspired by the recent heat he’s received in the media, due to the mistakes he’s made in his personal life (Hart vaguely addressed this in the beginning of his show, never specifically calling out the “messups” he’s done; I assumed he was referring to the rumors of his infidelity with his current wife and rumored sex tape). I’ve watched all of Hart’s specials - his last tour was the first one that I went to the theatres to see, my fanhood increasing with each joke released. From his famous “alright, alright, alright” joke referencing his uncle, to his anecdotes about his children, Hart has always been my favorite comedian. I knew that he was going on his sixth major tour, however I had no idea he was coming to Baltimore until I got an event alert on Facebook, and as a virgin to
live comedy, I figured Hart would be the best comedian for me to share my first experience with. I was lucky enough to get tickets to Saturday night’s performance, having avoided the reviews from my peers who had seen him the night before. I can rewatch Hart’s older specials and still laugh to this day (especially at his ostrich joke in “Seriously Funny”), however I wanted every joke to sustain its freshness this time around. The arena was crowded with tons of people, some sharing that they had come from different states just to see Hart and his openers. As a newcomer to seeing live comedy, my excitement only increased as I heard more and more people speak of how great he’s been at live shows in the past. The show’s openers made for a great start to the night. Writer and actor Joey Wells was the first to open the show, greeting the audience and serving as the emcee for the night. His jokes were funny yet lighthearted, and served as a great way to grasp the large crowd’s attention. He wowed the crowd with the reference to his age (and gave me hope that it is possible to continue looking youthful even after making it “over the hill.”) Will “Spank” Horton was next to perform, being given a little more time than Wells. His jokes had more grit to them; his comedic approach was a hard, careless mentality (his voice reminded me a lot
of DMX, which made his jokes that more hilarious). Horton addressed topics ranging from public school teachers to marriage, all putting humor into bad situations to be in. He even counted down his jokes, commenting bluntly that he knew no one came to see him. His rough approach worked in his favor - the crowd cracked up and cheered for his performance. At this point, I was eased into my seat and ready for Hart to take the stage. The last opener (and my personal favorite) was comedian Na’im Lynn. Lynn, who was given the longest amount of time of all the openers, was absolutely hilarious. He had a similar comedic style as Wells, however told all of his jokes in the form of relatable stories. He was able to address the sensitivity of society in today’s world, and was able to make jokes surrounding groups of people without playing into stereotypes. Every time I thought he might say something touchy, he surprised me with a completely different response, and I think that is what made his performance so great. Once Lynn finished his performance, the crowd buzzed with noise and excitement as Wells came back to the stage to introduce the star of the show. As seconds passed, I readied myself for what was about to be comedic gold, up close and personal. Before Hart was introduced, Wells did have to address an elephant in the room – prior to the
Courtesy of kevinhartnation.com
Kevin Hart addresses his mistakes and overcoming critics in his new comedic tour, “Irresponsible Tour.”
Courtesy of kevinhartnation.com
Hart’s “Irresponsible Tour” is the sixth of his major comedy shows. show’s start, there were signs plastered everywhere saying that no cell phones were allowed to be on or in sight. Guards had been pacing back and forth each section, reporting and escorting people out who did not follow the strict rule. Wells had reported that at the time before Hart’s start, more than 50 people had been kicked out of the show. Although the measures seemed extreme, Wells lightened the mood by making jokes about people getting kicked out, and advised the crowd to abide by the rule for the comedians’ sake. He even poked fun at some of the guards, making jokes about how serious they were to allow for the audience members to take in the rule with a little more ease. After Wells last warning, it was time for the main event. The stage’s video screen, in the shape of a rectangular box, lowered to the stage, as an introductory video played. The video showcased all of Hart’s accomplishments, from addressing his popular past tours to the movies he’s been featured in since his career took off. As the video continued, I was worried it was going to just be a promotional video of Hart, but then it addressed the fact that despite all of his success, he still managed to screw up and make mistakes, bringing the audience to the central point of the night’s show. As the video neared its end, the sound of heartbeats blasted throughout the arena, and the screen
began to rise alongside the volume of the crowd. Hart was found standing central stage, standing on a stage overlay of a red heart with a “K” in the center, a heart-shaped spotlight illuminating him. The amount of energy that burst throughout the arena was electrifying. Hart’s performance, which lasted roughly 90 minutes, was fresh and unique, yet still told in his wellknown, relatable style. He spoke of his children, relationships, and all the trouble he’s gotten into in the media, each subject being told in the form of funny anecdotes. During his Saturday night performance, there was even a moment in which he shed a few tears, telling the crowd to “let me get it out” as he struggled to finish acting out a joke due to all of the laughter it was causing. By his final joke, my face hurt due to all the smiling and cackling I had done. Hart’s show was an absolute blast to attend. At the end of the show, he allowed everyone to take out their phones, and he spoke to Baltimore about how much he appreciated the area and all the support he’s gotten from us throughout the years. As the crowd cleared out, the energy never left, and by the time I got to my car, I was more than satisfied with the way I had spent my night. Kevin Hart may be an irresponsible “grown little man,” but he’s seriously funny.
Arts & Life
March 27, 2018
Hair meets tech Five underrated bands to listen to TIMOTHY COFFMAN Columnist
There’s no set system for how certain bands become popular. Many of the surges in popularity for artists simply come from the artist in question being at the right place at the right time. However, while most of the popular bands have been able to stick, there are some bands and artists that deserve so much more attention. Here are five artists that have eluded mainstream appeal but should definitely be in your musical collection. 1. Travis- This group came out of the Britpop era of music that was all the rage in the late 1990s. While the heavy hitters included Oasis and Blur, many forget about Travis, a group that had more of a pop-tinged sound and laid-back attitude than their contemporaries. The singer, Fran Healy, is brilliant at crafting a melody that may not settle in at first, but grows on you like a fungus. His writing and singing style is a blend of gravel and soulful croon, which paved the way for bands like Coldplay. Truly one of the 90s undiscovered gems. Essential album: “The Man Who”. 2. The Replacements- This band came to prominence in the mid-80s and laid the benchmark for alternative rock along with The Smiths, R.E.M and The Cure. While sounding drunk on some of their records, each album from their glory years has a shimmery tint to it that gives writer Paul Westerberg’s stories of downtrodden heroes to shine through. This went on to influence almost every alternative rock outfit of the 1990s. An underrated band singing about the lives of underappreciated people…what’s so wrong about that? Essential album: “Tim”. 3. Big Star- This group created some of the greatest power pop in the history of the genre. While many bands of the 70s focused on disco or prog rock, Big Star came out with songs about teenage melodrama with The Beatles songwriting sensibilities. Each song captures a certain angst that can be seen in all of the classic pop music that we are still trying to steal from today. Essential album: “#1 Record”. 4. The Foxboro Hot Tubs- Okay… this may be cheating just a little bit. This next entry is not a band but more of an offshoot for Green Day. While these guys certainly have their
Courtesy of rollingstone.com
“The Velvet Underground & Nico” is just one of the underdog albums columnist Tim Coffman rwecommends showing some attention to. fair share of attention, their album “Stop Drop and Roll!!!” still holds up as a throwback to the garage rock of the 60s. This album also borrows heavily from the garage rock revival sound of the early 2000s. Think Green Day trying to play like The Strokes and you’re almost there. While bizarre on paper, this project is very entertaining from start to finish and a great party album. 5. The Velvet Underground- This band is a classic case wherever every fan who likes this band got it… afterwards. The Velvet Underground eponymous debut was met with a
resounding “eh” in the 60s by critics and fans, but now can rightfully be considered a masterpiece. They captured the griminess of the hometown of New York City with uneasiness and subtle beauty seeping through. The Velvet Underground makes the listener feel trapped in this concrete wasteland but also peppy and hopeful for the future, sometimes within the same song. This group essentially captured the New York City aesthetic into a synthetic concoction and the rock world shines a little brighter thanks to it. Essential Album: “The Velvet Underground & Nico.”
Colour app rescues curls KERRY INGRAM Assoc. Arts & Life Editor
If you have any type of texture to your hair, you already know the struggle can be very real. From figuring out how to keep the moisture in your mane, to how to truly embrace and love your locks, wavy to curly hair has had a lot more attention paid to it in the past decade, with tons of new brands emerging and “hair gurus” creating tutorials on YouTube. Despite the increase in attention, there has still been a lack of truly useful innovations when it comes to tackling hair that isn’t naturally pin-straight. That is until now. Colour, an app made for women with textured hair, has emerged and risen to popularity in recent months due to its Bumble-like efficiency in matching users to knowledgeable stylists ready to slay your hairstyle. The app, which launched in 2016, was made as a way to bring inclusivity into the beauty industry, specifically for women of color. “Could you imagine a world where women were rushing to the salon to get their hair teased up into afros
in the same quantity that women, who are Black, are getting their hair straightened?” said Debra Shigley, founder of Colour, in an interview with Ebony. “We have an entire beauty industry that is not geared toward women of color.” Shigley launched Colour as an app to provide on-location hair services to women of color. The app aims to provide quality salon-style services that are both convenient and affordable. The stylists are chosen through what Shigley calls “auditions”. Each stylist showcases their specialty or overall hair talent, being graded on things from their styling method to professionalism. Those who pass that stage are then interviewed and go through a background check to ensure that they are a right fit for the Colour team. The app, which is currently only available for IOS devices, allows customers to browse through a selection of styles to choose from, before setting a time and day for when to receive a hairstyling service. Although the app is currently limited to users in the Atlanta area, Shigley noted her plans to expand to more metropolitan areas, including Washington, D.C. and Baltimore. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com.
14 March 27, 2018
Arts & Life
Beautiful people will ruin your life Dollars don’t dominate The Wombats revamps signature style “Atlanta” takes on power ALEX HELMS Contributing Writer
Courtesy of ksdbfm.org
The Wombats rings in its 15th year as a band with its latest album, “Beautiful People Will Ruin Your Life.” CHLOË WILLIAMS Columnist
British rock band The Wombats released their new album, “Beautiful People Will Ruin Your Life”, on Feb. 9, an album that revisits the band’s alternative roots while still maintaining the soundscapes most prominent in their last album, “Glitterbug”. “Beautiful People” promises more of the unique lyrical prowess of frontman Matthew “Murph” Edward Murphy, as well as a range of musical variations compared to past albums. In its essence, the album is entirely what you would expect from The Wombats, but with noticeable maturity and variety. The album begins with the upbeat “Cheetah Tongue,” which takes the listener on an audio journey that plays with several varied elements. The audience is presented with an ethereal swirl of instrumentals leading into the echoing bridge where time would seem to stop, save for the rhythmic snapping that leads us back into the track’s familiar guitar riff. The song eventually leads into the equally bouncy “Lemon to a Knife Fight”. This song contains lyrics of perpetual unpreparedness in terms of relationships, as well as more of the clean indie rock guitar that this time finds itself transforming into a tease of pop synthesizing before returning back to its original state. We are then slowed down with the beautiful vocal writing and cloudlike instrumentals of “Turn.” This song floats through a decidedly pop universe, yet is constantly supported by an ever-present and chiming guitar. The focal point of “Turn” is its powerful ending that intensifies the dreamlike world of the track but delivers a more
pungent restatement of the chorus. As the song fades into the air, the album continues on with the biting opening distortion of “Black Flamingo”. This gritty piece plays with The Wombats’ signature mix of rock and pop elements before settling into a steady groove during supported by various percussive elements. The dark, croaking vocals underneath the lead help to add a layer of depth, further cultivating the complex swirl of components that join forces to create “Black Flamingo.” Borrowing from “Black Flamingo,” “White Eyes” opens with a dirtier guitar before taking the approach of a dance song. This style is reminiscent of the “This Modern Glitch” album, but altered with the band’s newfound appreciation of celestial-style soundscapes. “White Eyes” has the most energy of any song on “Beautiful People,” made possible with its use of feminine supporting vocals, prolonged yet still spirited build-ups, and dynamic drum fills that lead into the intensely satisfying backbeat of each chorus. This high energy subsides with the approaching of next track, “Lethal Combination” which presents itself in the form of soft, uptempo waves. The juxtaposition between peppy backbeat with atmospheric guitar and swirling instrumentals with pulsing drum-work supports the affectionate melancholia described in the lyrics. “Out of My Head” is the first track where the bass takes the forefront. In doing so, it takes a vital role in creating an overall dark and quintessentially indie feel. Fairly unique from the rest of “Beautiful People,” this song features particularly expressive vocal moments and the first distortion guitar solo of the album. As the bass leads us out of the song and into “I Only Wear Black,”
the listeners will be taken to the very start of The Wombats; cheery little tunes about rather unfortunate anecdotes. Beginning timidly with piano before building to pounding drums and quickly strummed guitars, this simple song about emotional instability sounds like came straight off of the group’s “A Guide To Love, Loss & Desperation” album. We are now placed into the modern, artful “Ice Cream” which first establishes itself with reverberating clean guitar and lively bass. This environment is then viciously interrupted with the full force of clashing cymbals and deep, lyrical strings. The resonating vocals mixed with low, burrowing elements is highly reminiscent of Arctic Monkeys’ “AM”, yet still retains the archetypal instrumental stylings and anecdotal writing expected of The Wombats. The penultimate piece “Dip You in Honey” is a feel-good alternative track that lands in a bubblegum pop world in its chorus. The verses do rely on considerably repetitive guitar-work, however the switch to livelier sections is far more prominently established because of this. Though not as slow or emotional as other tracks on the album, “Dip You in Honey” is perhaps the best love song on the album. “Beautiful People” comes to a close with the slow, somewhat haunting song, “I Don’t Know Why I Like You but I Do”. This song drifts through an evening soundscape that starts off gently mysterious before building into a heightened atmosphere of soulful guitar work, supportive drums, and pleading vocals that simply cease into the air. This track is perhaps a lyrical reflection of the album as a whole, pondering the trials and triumphs of complicated love, confusing emotions, and an overall strive for optimism.
WARNING: This recap contains spoilers from season 2, episode 3 of “Atlanta.” Van (Zazie Beetz) finally returns to “Atlanta” in “Money Bag Shawty.” The episode’s director, Hiro Murai, even plays with the reveal a bit, choosing not to directly show Van’s face during her first lines of dialogue. While the actual entrance lacks on-screen fanfare, it’s one of the episode’s biggest surprises, precisely because of how casual it is as she greets Earn (Donald Glover) with a simple, “Hey, babe.” Although the first season ended with Van and Earn on good terms, it seemed as if her absence since then hinted at an off-screen falling out, but “Money Bag Shawty” shuts those theories down. Despite their turbulent history, they seem to be at one of the best places in their on-and-off relationship, financially and emotionally. In fact, Van and Earn are probably more pleasant to each other in this one episode than they were during the entire first season. Just as Earn’s career has reached a new high with his latest paycheck, his relationship with Van has grown with it. However, when Earn decides to celebrate that paycheck by only paying with hundred-dollar bills, his stubbornness proves to be his downfall. Taking Van to an upscale movie theater, a hookah bar, and even a strip club, Earn tries to find a way to use even just one hundred-dollar bill, but he’s constantly denied that privilege by the cashiers and business managers he meets along
the way. The movie theater claims to reject Earn’s large bill due to a new policy, but the cashier doesn’t put up any fight when the white customer in line wants to pay with a hundred-dollar bill. Van offers to pay for the tickets instead, but Earn insists on fighting the theater’s racist policy. He’s not wrong for trying to expose the racist business practices he encounters throughout the night, but “Atlanta” shows that he’s fighting a losing battle. There is a system of practices, whether conscious or not, that prevents minorities in America, especially black men and women, from enjoying equal opportunity and treatment. But in many cases, fighting against it is a double-edged sword. Even in Clark County’s experience, the people who have the power to offer opportunities, such as “The Fast and the Furious” soundtrack appearance that Al (Brian Tyree Henry) coveted, aren’t very generous with them. Sometimes in order to succeed at all, you have to participate within that system rather than trying to desert it altogether. Earn’s refusal to accept this is exemplified in the episode’s final sequence, with his foot-race against former NFL quarterback Michael Vick in the parking lot of a strip club. Although the show cuts away from the race after Earn’s first step, it’s clear that he lost miserably when it cuts to Van and Earn silently riding back home, sitting as far away from each other as the back seat will let them. Earn’s stubbornness and pride having ruined the night, Van reminds him bluntly that, of course, he couldn’t win, “It’s Michael Vick.”
Courtesy of vulture.com
Glover showcases systematic racism in episode three of “Atlanta,” showing how no amount of money can overcome discrimination.
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16 March 27, 2018
tu soars in eagl championship closing DESMOND BOYLE Staff Writer
Towson posted its second-highest score in East Atlantic Gymnastics League (EAGL) Championship history behind a first-place finish from junior Mary Elle Arduino on beam at SECU Arena Saturday evening. Towson finished fourth in the event with a score of 195.675 which was behind first-place N.C. State, second-place New Hampshire and third-place George Washington. Towson finished in front of Pittsburgh and North Carolina, who finished fifth and sixth, respectively. “We started the meet on floor and we just had a lot of energy and you could see the team was having fun,” Head Coach Vicki May said. “Performing like that with that
kind of confidence at a meet this big was great to see, and I think being at home helped a lot.” On floor, Gabriella Yarussi led the Tigers with a fifth-place finish and a score of 9.900. The senior helped the Tigers score a 49.100 in the event, while sophomore Melissa Temkov and junior Cortni Baker both scored a 9.850 to finish 12th. On vault, Yarussi continued to lead with a 9.850, earning a careerhigh score and fourth-place finish. Freshman Kyla Gamble and senior Tyra McKellar each placed 13th with a 9.800, with Gamble also earning a career-high score. “To see so many of our gymnasts have some of their best performances at a championship meet like this, against such good competition, was awesome for us as coaches to watch,” May said. On the uneven bars, freshman
Tess Zientek placed 12th with a 9.800, while McKellar finished 15th with a 9.775. Noelle Harada also returned for bars after missing most of the season due to injury. The Tigers put their best performances out on beam, as Arduino became the first Tiger to earn a first-place finish at the EAGL Championships in two years. She scored a 9.950 to tie her own school record, while Yarussi and McKellar both finished in the top-10, placing fourth and 10th respectively. “To be the only team that is not fully funded in terms of scholarships, facilities and coaching staff, and to finish very close to the top three is a big accomplishment for this team and this program,” May said. In the all-around, McKellar placed sixth with a score of 39.175. Several Tigers earned All-
Tournament first and second team honors at the Championship. Yarussi earned first-team honors on floor, vault and beam, while McKellar earned first-team in the all-around as well as second-team in vault, bars and beam. Arduino also earned first-team honors on beam, while Temkov and Baker earned second-team on floor. Gamble earned second-team honors on vault and Zientek earned second-team on bars. The EAGL Championships completed the team portion of the gymnastics season. The Tigers finished out the season with a 15-19 record, improving six wins from last season. Towson will wait to see if any of its members qualified for the NCAA Women's Gymnastics Championship, which will be hosted at Stegeman Coliseum at the University of Georgia on April 2.
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out strong MUHAMMAD WAHEED Staff Writer
Senior Ksenia Safonova placed first in the hammer throw as Towson competed in the Victor Lopez Classic at Rice University’s Wendel D. Ley Track in Houston, Texas, this weekend. Safonova’s first-place throw of 192-6 was a season-best. She was one of three Tigers to compete in the event. “She’s one of the top throwers on the East Coast and we expected her to do that,” Head Coach Mike Jackson said. “She’s just one of the best, so this wasn’t a surprise for us.” Junior Lauren Coleman placed fourth in the hammer throw with a 176-3, while junior Taylor Giles came in eighth place with a personal-best mark of 167-7. Junior Phontavia Sawyer placed fourth in the discus throw with a 152-6 mark, setting a new school record in her first season after transferring from Virginia State. Junior Ashleigh Stallings held the previous school record of 150-11 which was set in 2016. “She’s getting better in the discus,” Jackson said. “She’s really known to be more of a shot putter, but it was a pleasant surprise and a great performance for her, so she’s going to keep building on that. We’re looking to strengthen discus, which is an area we feel that we need to get better in this year.” Three athletes finished in the topfive for throwing events this past weekend, continuing their success from the indoor season. “They’re going to bigger meets and still doing well and winning, so it was just a great transition for them,” Jackson said. “They work very hard. They’re very diligent, and we have coach [Jeff] Rebholz who’s a great throws coach; they’re great athletes, he’s a great coach and it’s a great combination.” Junior Liz Reid placed second in the 400-meter run in 54.92 seconds. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com
March 27, 2018
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18 March 27, 2018
towson fights for win over florida KARUGA KOINANGE Sports Editor
Towson women’s lacrosse earned a hardfought 14-11 win over No. 6 Florida Wednesday night at Donald R. Dizney Stadium. This victory marks the team’s second top-10 win of the season. Despite the impressive win, Head Coach Sonia LaMonica does not believe that the team is playing at the highest level it’s capable of. “As coaches, we’re always pushing to be better,” LaMonica said. “We always want to get a little better each day and that’s the goal of this journey each year. Do I think we had our best game? No, but I think we had a real team effort last night. They played their hearts out and played together.” The Tigers (6-2) started off sloppy, allowing the Gators (6-3) to capture
a 3-0 lead just under 10 minutes into the first half. Redshirt senior attacker Gabby Cha finally got Towson on the board midway through the half on an unassisted score. The road team remained aggressive throughout the period, forcing several fouls on Florida’s defense. The Tigers earned a free position attempt and sophomore midfielder Shelby Stack cashed in on the opportunity with a goal to cut the Gators lead to one. “Our players remained aggressive and they were ready for physical play from Florida which we definitely saw, but they matched up to that and played tough,” LaMonica said. The Gators looked to extend their lead, but could not get any shots past sophomore goalkeeper Kiley Keating. She finished the game with a career-high 11 saves, leading a stingy Towson defense.
“[Kiley had] incredible focus,” LaMonica said. “Kiley was really locked in. Her defense in front of her was crushing it and allowing Kiley to see shots. That worked in her favor. She also stepped up and made some outstanding saves.” The Tigers turned defense into offense as they cleared the ball of Keating’s save and tied the score on a goal from freshman attacker Kaitlin Thornton. Thornton also posted a career-high with four goals on the day. “The style that we played with really opened up opportunities for her and for others,” LaMonica said. “She did a great job of finishing which is something she focused on doing a little better job of. She really dialed in and focused on her part and she finished hard against a great goalie in Florida.” - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com
File photo by Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Towson battled Coastal Carolina at Johnny Unitas Stadium. The Tigers came away with a 15-3 victory over the Chanticleers.
tigers serve up spring break wins BILLY OWENS Assistant Sports Editor
Towson completed its spring break campaign with four wins in five matches, giving the team its first winning record of the season this past week. The Tigers earned three of their wins at the USTA National Campus in Lake Nona in Orlando, Florida, as they defeated Denison 7-0 Monday, Hofstra 6-1 Wednesday and Hamilton 7-0 Thursday. Their lone loss in Florida was a 5-1 defeat to Keiser Tuesday. “We have the majority of the CAA matches in front of us,” Head Coach Jamie Peterson said. “We still can put ourselves in a better position to advance, which is going to be really important over the next few weeks.” Sunday afternoon, Towson earned their third straight win with a 5-0 performance against Rhode Island at the Brigade Sports Complex in
Annapolis, Maryland. The match was played in a condensed 4+1 format. The Tigers took an early 1-0 lead by seizing the opening doubles match, as AJ Gomer and Renate van Oorschodt paired to defeat the team of Mihaela Codreanu and Nicole Legler 6-4, 6-2. Towson continued its success in singles, as the team won all four singles matches in straight sets. No. 1 Nicole Shakhnazarova beat Rachel Smilansky 6-4, 6-2 and No. 2 Lucy Williams defeated Ariel Haber 6-0, 6-2, while No. 3 Jane Shusterman topped Halah Davis 6-2, 6-3 and No. 4 Lucy Gloninger ousted Paige Alshon 6-1, 6-1. “I told the girls that it’s really important that we get off to a fast start,” Peterson said. “They did a really good job of that, for the most part, and were very efficient. We didn’t play our greatest, but we did everything necessary to be efficient.” Thursday morning, Towson routed Division III opponent Hamilton 7-0
for its second shutout of the week in Lake Nona. The Tigers went a perfect 3-0 in the doubles and 6-0 in the singles over the Continentals, with no Tiger dropping more than four games in any of the singles matches. Wednesday morning, Towson posted a 6-1 win over conference rival Hofstra in Lake Nona. The Tigers swept the three doubles flights and won all six singles flights without dropping a set. The win marked Towson’s ninth consecutive victory over the Pride since the 2009-10 season “We had one singles loss, but we won some tough singles matches in straight sets,” Peterson said. “We really needed that win, and to win it in a convincing fashion, too.” Tuesday morning, Towson fell 5-1 to No. 3 Keiser of the NAIA in Lake Nona. The Seahawks only dropped five games overall between all three doubles flights and won four flights in
singles to claim the win. Towson’s lone point was a 7-5, 7-6 (4) win at No. 5 singles by Gloninger over Emma Henriksen. “They happened to play a bit better than us,” Peterson said. “The matchup level between the two teams was really even, but we didn’t adjust well enough to the conditions and got off to a slow start.” Monday afternoon, Towson rolled past Division III opponent Denison 7-0 in Lake Nona, ending a three-match losing streak and giving the team its first win in just over a month. The Tigers started with three wins in the doubles flights, before going on to take all six singles flights over the Big Red. The team won five of the six flights in straight sets, with the only dropped set coming in No. 6 Claire Bedi’s match against Charlotte Purnode. Bedi would come back to win 0-6, 6-4, [10-8] in the deciding set match tiebreaker. The Tigers will travel to the
Philadelphia area later this week to take on Villanova at the Villanova Tennis Complex in Villanova, Pennsylvania Thursday afternoon, before facing off against CAA foe Drexel at the Vidas Courts in Philadelphia Friday afternoon. “This is crunch time,” Peterson said. “It’s time for us to put up or shut up.”
We still can put ourselves in a better position to advance, which is going to be really important over the next few weeks. JAMIE PETERSON Head Coach
March 27, 2018
USTORE hens rule the roost TU drops first CAA series of 2018 to Delaware
ATHLETE OF THE WEEK Gabby Cha Women’s Lacrosse
File photo by Amanda Jean Thomas/ The Towerlight
Towson competes in a game early this season at John B. Schuerholz Baseball Complex. This weekend, the team dropped its first conference series at the hands of rival Delaware at Bob Hannah Stadium.
JILL GATTENS Staff Writer
Towson opened up Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) play with a visit to local rival Delaware, dropping two out of three games in a series at Bob Hannah Stadium this weekend. The series was originally slated to be played at John B. Scherholz Park, but inclement weather moved the two teams up I-95. Sunday, the Tigers (4-17, 1-2 CAA) took an early lead over the Blue Hens (12-9, 2-1 CAA) after senior outfielder Colin Gimblet plated junior infielder Richie Palacios in the top of the first inning. Redshirt junior outfielder Mark Grunberg later scored on a wild pitch to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead at the end of the inning. The Blue Hens got a run back in the bottom of the second, but the Tigers answered back in the third when senior infielder Billy Lennox scored on an RBI single to right field from Gimblet. Palacios then scored on a sacrifice bunt from senior infielder Logan Burke to extend the road team’s lead. Towson plated four runs in the top of the fourth inning, begin-
ning with a bases-loaded walk from Grunberg to score junior catcher Trey Martinez. Gimblet then delivered a bases-clearing triple, scoring Grunberg, Palacios and Lennox to give Towson an 8-1 lead. The Tigers added two runs in the top of the fifth inning when Martinez plated sophomore infielder Noah Cabrera and junior infielder Richard Miller with a single. Towson’s early offense propelled them to a 10-2 victory over Delaware in the series finale. Senior pitcher Michael Adams (1-2) secured his first win of the season after striking out 10 batters through eight innings of work. “The offensive execution was spot on,” Head Coach Matt Tyner said. “We need to stay with what we’re doing well. We kept the offense moving and putting pressure on their defense.” In game one of Saturday’s doubleheader, Delaware took an early lead in the first inning from a sacrifice fly. They added another run in the bottom of the second to take a 2-0 lead. The Tigers got on the board in the fifth inning after Martinez scored on a failed pickoff attempt, but the Blue Hens looked to extend their lead again. They answered
back in the bottom of the fifth with two more runs to take a sizeable 4-1 advantage. In the seventh inning, the Tigers pulled within one as Lennox drove in a run with a sacrifice fly. Palacios followed with an RBI single to bring the score to 4-3. The Blue Hens extended their lead by scoring a run a in the seventh and eighth innings which led to a 6-3 victory for the Tigers rival. “Every game was consistent,” Tyner said. “We’re a lot closer to turning it around.” In game two, the Blue Hens scored their only two runs of the game off a single and triple in the bottom of the third inning. Towson scored its lone run in the eighth inning after pinch runner Craig Alleyne scored on an RBI double from Lennox. Despite a strong effort, the team would fall 2-1. “Everybody is starting to build on the momentum we were creating,” Tyner said. “It started with the execution of what was being called.” Towson travels to face George Washington Wednesday. The first pitch scheduled for 3 p.m. The team will continue conference play by hosting CAA opponent Hofstra for a three-game series this weekend. First pitch of the series is scheduled for 3 p.m. on Friday.
Redshirt senior attacker Gabby Cha scored two goals, registered one assist and recorded three points in Towson’s comeback victory over Florida. Towson is 6-2 on the season and ranked No. 9 in the NCAA.
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20 March 27, 2018
sport clubs create lasting bonds KARUGA KOINANGE Sports Editor
Bridget Carrig was skating in a show at Iceworld in Abingdon in December of 2010 when she ran into a familiar face during the dress rehearsal. Carrig, president of the figure skating club at Towson at the time, recognized Brienne Fiske, her longtime coach who had been giving her private skating lessons since Carrig was nine years old. At the time, Carrig was flooded with her duties as president, along with managing her scholastic career. She had taken over as president in her freshman year and inherited a difficult situation. The club barely had any money left, had very few skaters and no sense of direction. Overwhelmed with trying to rebuild the club while participating in competition and taking classes, Carrig asked Fiske to join the club as the head coach. “I said ‘woah,’” Fiske said. “She explained to me how it had been too much. And I knew when she came back to competition she had been frustrated because she did not compete as well as she wanted to, and it was because she was trying to do too much.” With her three children grown up and in college, Fiske said she felt she had the freedom to accept the offer. She also wanted to take some weight off of Carrig. “You can’t coach, drive, organize, compete, sleep [and] eat,” Fiske said. “She was trying to wear too many hats.” Erin Brockmeyer, current co-president of the club, chose to attend Towson specifically to join the figure skating club. Similarly to Carrig, Brockmeyer was named president her freshman year in 2017. She acknowledges that it can be difficult to have so many duties, but she said it can be fulfilling when things are running smoothly. Brockmeyer shares her presidency with fellow sophomore Lindsey Armah. The two joined the club in the same year. Their tasks as co-presidents include managing fundraising, setting up community service events, scheduling practices and setting up competition events. “It’s stressful, but it’s really fun,”
Brockmeyer said. “It’s really rewarding to see the rec team learning how to do new things and how excited they become when they accomplish their own goals.” Though contributing a large amount of time and effort into the team can be exhausting, Carrig, Fiske and Brockmeyer each shared one sentiment; the club creates connections that go beyond skating. “It’s a lot of camaraderie,” Fiske said. “If somebody has a bad skate, everybody rallies around them and makes them feel better. If they have a great skate, they’re thrilled for them.” Brockmeyer said that opposing teams share locker rooms during competitions, do homework and eat together in the stands, and even root for each other when they are competing. “It’s great because everybody understands the struggles of skating so they’re always encouraging one another,” Brockmeyer said. “Even though we’re technically competing against other schools, we help each other out with whatever we need.” Eight years after beginning their Towson partnership, Carrig and Fiske are coaching together. Fiske coached the team solo until Carrig graduated in 2014 and joined as an assistant coach. “[The transition] was pretty easy,” Carrig said. “I was one of the only people [on the team] that had graduated so I knew most of the team still and that helped.” Fiske has over 40 years of skating experience as a coach and competitor, while Carrig provides a relatable personality for the skaters on the team since she is closer to their age. Carrig said she and Fiske work well together to offer unique perspectives as leaders. “We need each other,” Carrig said. “It’s kind of a balancing act. Since I’m so young and so new at this, I look to her to learn how to coach others.” Fiske affectionately refers to Carrig as her “co-coach” due to her quick learning and as an acknowledgement of Carrig’s ability to keep the club afloat while she was still in school. “Bridget had to do a whole lot of work,” Fiske said. “She had to renew funding again and get a lot of people to do it, but she was bound and determined so we are here now because of her.” Though the two mesh well, making sure that everything is operating cor-
rectly is no easy task. There are several factors to keep track of. The team is composed of two groups: a recreational team full of skaters who have joined simply for fun or to work on their skills, and a competitive team that partakes in shows against other schools. The roster fluctuates throughout the year because of varying schedules among students. Towson is in the East Coast Division, so competitions can be anywhere on the East Coast. There are three competitions per academic year, each including three disciplines: ice dancing, freestyle and a team event. A primary building block of unity among the team is being able to travel together. This year, the team has competed at New York University, MIT and Pittsburgh. Carrig said that spending time travelling together helps the team bond and get to know each other better, but that going on the road can sometimes be difficult because there is no team bus. “The freshmen don’t have cars, so to get to an ice rink is a very difficult thing,” Fiske said. “We do a tremendous amount of carpooling, but not everybody’s schedules coincide. If you could walk to a rink on campus it’d be a big difference.” Another issue the team members have to deal with throughout the season is the fact that they don’t have their own ice rink to practice in. Carrig and Fiske work at local ice rinks and talk to several skaters who have interest in Towson because of their unique club and to save money with in-state tuition, but the lack of a nearby ice rink can sometimes deter interest. “There is a severe need for a decent ice rink in the Baltimore metropolitan area,” Fiske said. “There are ways that it could be done. It would take some effort, but if it was marketed properly [it could be done].” Kristen West, skating director for the club, helped start up the club with Rick Reyor in 2003 and said she is proud to see the organization thriving over a decade later. “It’s special to me that it’s continuing over the years,” West said. “I just have a love for skating and to see people continue it through school is just an awesome thing.” The figure skating club demonstrates a unique club with a unified
community, but they are not the only sports club on campus to foster a family-like environment. Towson’s boxing club also provides a chance for young athletes to improve their skill sets while connecting with a diverse range of people. Robert Roman founded the club in 2009 with his childhood friend Patrick Genova. The two volunteered at a gym in Loch Raven where they taught boxing and became inspired to bring the sport to Towson. Roman and Genova didn’t know anything about the process of forming the club until Herbert Hollidge, a volunteer coach for the club, stepped into the picture. “We met Coach at Towson and he helped take us over the hump because he knew the process,” said Roman, who serves as the club’s vice president. “It was just a great partnership.” Hollidge guided Roman and Genova through the initial stages, but once the foundation was set the club quickly took off. Several students wanted to compete as amateur boxers, so Roman and Genova trained them individually at local gyms before convincing them to join the club. “I was the guy with the dreadlocks and things like that so a lot of people shied away from me,” Roman said. “Once I spoke and talked to fellow students at Towson, it was all a family-like environment.” After Hollidge helped form the club, he stepped into the role of coach where he trains boxers and sets up fights. The club is composed of 10 active members who practice Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings. Hollidge said he relishes the chance to give students the confidence and ability to defend themselves. “I pride myself in taking a college student who’s never boxed at all and making them a good boxer,” he said. “As a coach, my challenge is the personal involvement. I love it when I can take a timid person who does not have the self-esteem to think they can be a good boxer, and I don’t turn them into a ferocious killer, but I give them confidence.” Hollidge said one of the first boxers he ever trained was a 5-foot-4-inch, shy woman. After she trained with Hollidge for some time, she was able to beat a few males in the club. Hollidge said he not only wants to give boxers the tools to win, but wants
them to understand the mindset that it takes in order to succeed. “I don’t have a thug mentality when it comes to boxing,” Hollidge said. “The average person can become a boxer without wanting to hurt people…. Most thugs don’t make it in boxing because of that mindset.” Hollidge acknowledged that there is an element of danger that plays into boxing. However, he said most people who are serious about fighting are fully aware of what they are getting into and use boxing as a way to express themselves rather than a way to hurt others. “How do you appeal to somebody to get hit in the face?” Hollidge said. “If you don’t have a strong inclination to want to do it, it’s not an easy sale. People imagine it to be violent. A lot of people don’t come to the gym to beat people up. They’re there to work something else out in their life, and that happens to express itself in the form of boxing.” Philip Carpenter, transitional officer and former president of the club, shares Hollidge’s excitement about getting in the ring. “It’s pretty exciting,” Carpenter said. “The work is a lot worse than the actual competition. It’s pretty fun and exciting.” Carpenter transferred to Towson in 2015 and heard about the club through interest meetings. He attended a few practices and gained interest as time went on. He was elected president this fall, but graduates this May so he is currently teaching the younger members the duties they will have to inherit. The team recently travelled together to train at the Upton Boxing Center, a ring in the heart of Baltimore and near the scene of the Freddie Gray shooting. “There’s a lot of kids whose lives are changed in that gym and whose lives are saved there,” Hollidge said. “It’s a real experience.” Hollidge said most boxers he encounters are afraid to get into competition, but he stressed that it’s important to get past any initial fear in order to excel. He said the boxing community is accepting of all boxers who are looking to better themselves. “You become family,” Hollidge said. “Once you get in the ring and show that you’re there to work on [technique], most of the people embrace you and accept you as one of them.”
Published on Apr 4, 2018
Towson University's figure skating and boxing clubs reminisce on their enduring legacies, and how their clubs' athletes have formed family-l...