Towsonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s campus and community news source
April 16, 2019
Competitive gaming has exploded into a billion-dollar industry over the last few years. Find out how the Towson Esports League has unified gamers at TU, pg. 16
Photo by Brendan Felch, Illustration by Victoria Nicholson/ The Towerlight
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MER STEPHANIE KRA T STUDEN
April 16, 2019
RIGUEZ ETHAN SRTUODDENT
LOCATED IN COOK LIBRARY
April 16, 2019
Editor-in-Chief Karuga Koinange Senior Editor Bailey Hendricks News Editor Mary-Ellen Davis Asst. News Editor Keri Luise
TIGERFEST # TRENDING.
Sophia Bates Arts & Life Editor Kerry Ingram Asst. Arts & Life Editors Alex Helms Meg Hudson Sports Editor Tim Klapac Asst. Sports Editors Muhammad Waheed
@d00ditsalexa wow tigerfest weekend used to be my fav weekend in towson when I was in college, now i’m 26, still here, and completely avoiding the bars bc it’s amateur hour
@kaycymone kinda glad tigerfest is over, that was a lot of pressure
Jordan Kendall Staff Writers Jessica Ricks Anthony Petro Albert Ivory Glenn Kaplan John Hack Suzanne Stuller Cyan Thomas Aaron Thomas Marcus Whitman Brooks Warren Jalon Dixon
@_leahhh_717 Wow tigerfest weekend was so fun and needed
Photo Editor Brendan Felch Asst.Photo Editor Brittany Whitham
Staff Photographers Liam Beard Lacey Wall Simon Enagonio Nikki Hewins Lexi Thompson Tiffany Deboer Owen DiDonna Ryan Moriarty
@_milto_ Saw so many baddies at Tigerfest .. like y’all are oc beautiful
UPCOMING YOU TUBE VIDEO: T owerlight staff surveys Towson students on how they feel about crime on and ar ound campus.
General Manager Mike Raymond Art Director Victoria Nicholson Webmaster Circulation Staff Scott Halerz Dom Capparuccini Elssa Kenfack Kirsten Tildon
8000 York Road University Union Room 309 Towson, MD 21252 (410) 704-5153 firstname.lastname@example.org 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. ©2019 by The Towerlight, 8000 York Rd, Towson, MD 21252. All rights reserved.
16-20 CALENDAR. 17 1 9 20 16 8 1
PUBLIC SPEAKING COMPETITION
The TU Public Communication Center presents a university-wide public speaking contest. Students will present on topics that address any or all of the ideas of advocacy, diversity, and leadership.
Recital Hall, CA 3060, 6:30 p.m.
FILM SCREENING OF BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY
TAKE BACK THE NIGHT
OTHER SOLAR WTMD’S 5TH SYSTEMS ANNUAL BREWS PLANETARIUM AND BANDS SHOW
Pride Mentors and the Queer Student Union are excited to present a FREE screening and discussion of Bohemian Rhapsody!
Take Back the Night focuses on eliminating sexual and domestic violence in all forms and provides a space for survivors and community members alike to break the silence associated with sexual assault and domestic/dating violence.
We live in an amazing age of astronomical discovery. After decades of searching for planets around other stars, we finally found some in the 1990s and over the last two decades discovered over 3000 planets around other stars.
Linthicum Hall, 111, 6 p.m. to 8:45 p.m.
Freedom Square, 6:30 p.m.
Smith Hall, Room 521, 8 p..m
Follow us @TheTowerlight!
Enjoy all-you-can-sample beers while rocking out to some great live music at the WTMD studios.
WTMD Studio, Noon to 4 p.m.
It’s okay to not be okay SAMUEL SMITH Columnist
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Finals are coming up, which can be a huge stressor for most (if not all) college students. And stressors, such as finals, can trigger emotional feelings. These can be normal, like feeling stressed, worried or even a little bit anxious. But for some of us, these stressors can trigger a mental health change, such as a depressive or manic episode. For some, it triggers their eating disorder. For others, it triggers dissociation or depersonalization. For me, whenever my mental illness is triggered, I can feel immensely guilty about it. I feel guilty because I sometimes can’t even get out of bed to go to class or work. I get overwhelmed. I withdraw. I cancel appointments. And I feel guilty about all these things. I feel guilty because I think “It’s just mental health! It’s no big deal!” Or sometimes I think about stopping my medicines because either they’re not working (when I’m depressed) or I don’t need them anymore because I’m cured (when I’m manic). Or I think that I must be faking it, that I’m subconsciously doing it for attention. But, I never think about a physical illness that way. I never
think me or a friend of mine should stop their meds for a physical illness, or that they’re cured, or that they’re faking it. Mental health is just as serious as physical health. When you have the flu, you take a day or two off to recover. You go to the doctor if things don’t get better. Why is mental health any different? When your doctor prescribes you an inhaler, or EpiPen, you use it as instructed. You don’t go off the medicine your doctor gave you without instruction. If you have a chronic condition, like hypothyroidism, and your doctor gives you a long-term medication, you don’t stop taking it simply because you “feel better” because your feeling better is directly caused by the medication. If you’re struggling with mental health issues, seek help. If your friend is struggling, encourage them to seek out treatment. Sometimes, treatment is therapy, sometimes it’s medicine, sometimes it’s both. In any case, it’s perfectly acceptable and
normal to receive treatment. Mental illnesses aren’t any less severe than physical illnesses. If you’re dealing with a mental illness episode, and you need to take a break, that’s perfectly okay. Your m e n tal and physical health c o m e before anyt hing else. I mean it. It comes before work, school, anything in your life. If you need to take a day or two to rest, to stay at home, to gather yourself and figure out how to best cope, then do it. You wouldn’t go to class if you had the flu or a bad cold, so don’t do it if your mental health gets that bad. And finally, if you’re currently suicidal, homicidal, or wanting to self harm, please reach out. You can call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800273-8255 or call 911. There’s also the Baltimore County Crisis Response at 410-931-2214. If it’s between the hours of 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM, you can go to the Counseling Center. It may seem scary, but trust me, it’s so worth it.
Learning to take constructive criticism KAYLA HUNT Columnist
For so long criticism has had a negative connotation, something that people tend to avoid and try to please those that are professionals in the field. Criticism is something that we’ve always been taught to accept and learn from because it gives us the means to
improve. However there seems to be a thin line between criticism that is constructive and destructive. It can be hard to distinguish between the two because criticism as a whole can be hurtful at times. The main difference between constructive and destructive criticism is the way that the messages are delivered. Constructive criticism is supposed to be useful feedback that you can learn from and work on,
whereas destructive criticism is negative, comes off as an attack and often times is meant to bring people down rather than up. The emergence of social media has made it a lot easier to not only be critical of others but also critical of ourselves. It is now very easy to provide feedback and comments on each others’ posts. - To read the rest of this column online, visit thetowerlight.com.
April 16, 2019
Starting a new chapter
Thank you for allowing me to grow exponentially KARUGA KOINANGE Editor-in-Chief
Well, I knew this would be an emotional day. Normally, when seniors leave the Towerlight they write a piece reflecting on their fondest memories working for the newspaper. But in the words of 2 Chainz, “I’m different.” I want to take this opportunity to reflect on some of the moments that I found myself in less than ideal situations. In just my second production day (when we lay out the newspaper and send it to print) as editor-in-chief, I had to leave early in order to take care of an assignment for school. I left my staff hanging a bit that day. In a cover story I wrote in the fall profiling a head coach at TU, I made a poor choice of words in the story and was called out for it by the coach. I had to go back and alter the wording online. Later in that semester, I failed to schedule a photo shoot for our cover story in time so we were left with bland courtesy photos. I bring all these bad memories up to say one thing; I’ve grown exponentially in my tenure with the Towerlight. My time with the Towerlight exposed me to a multitude of talented individuals and amazing experiences. Bailey is the best right hand woman I could ask for. Her drive and commitment to excellence, along with her unique sense of humor, makes her a true gem. Keep shining, Bails. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the homie Kerry (ay we graduating). I could always count on her to keep me in line and call me out on being an old man due to my forgetfulness. We’ve only
been friends for a year, but you the homie for life. And hopefully we work together at Johns Hopkins! Mel, you’re a beast. I hope you continue reporting in the future because you’re really damn good at it. And if you ever have a hilarious story about a guy you want to share, I’m more than willing to listen (and probably laugh at you). My fellow old man, Brendan. You’re one of the most creative, informed people that I know. I don’t care what anyone says about your rants. Keep dropping knowledge and keep taking awesome photos. Whenever I had an off day during production, I could always count on Tori to cheer me up with an unintentionally funny comment. Bless you for dealing with me sending you photos, titles and captions late. I was consistently inconsistent, and you were consistently patient with me. You always found a way to make things work and your knack for design inspires me. Tim, I know you’ve only been around for a short time, but you’re the man. You’re already doing way better running the sports section than I was when I first took over. I can’t wait to visit you at Turtle, and one of these nights you’ll have to join me on the other side of the bar to share a drink. Each of these people have helped shape the journalist and the person that I am today. But I am not a finished product. As I enter the professional field, I’ll lean on both the good and the bad experiences that I had with the Towerlight to help me survive. It’s only fitting that I end my time as editor-in-chief the same way that I began, with a Jay-Z quote. In the words of Hov, I’m “on to the next one.”
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April 16, 2019
Newell Hall floods
Thirty-two students displaced during repairs
April 14: A commuter student assaulted another commuter student duirng a soccer game at Burdick Hall. April 13: A non-affiliate was arrested for indecent exposure in Cook Library. April 12: A resident student was arrested for assaulting police officers in SECU Arena. April 11: A tool with a charger was removed from an unlocked maintenance office in Glen Complex Tower D. April 10: A mobile phone with a credit card believed lost was reported stolen when the credit card was discovered to have been used at West Village Commons. April 10: A students’ sunglasses left unattened in a classroom were taken in Van Bokkelen Hall. April 9: A found wallet resulted in a commuter student referred to Student Conduction for the possession of the identification of another in the Transportation Annex. April 9: A found wallet resulted in a resident student referred to Student Conduct for possession of false identification in Frederick Douglass House. April 8: A campus security authority was notified of a rape and an incident of stalking in Glen Complex Tower C. April 8: A campus security authority was notified of a rape that occurred in 2016 in Frederick Douglass House. April 6: A phishing phone call resulted in a comprised account and an unauthorized transaction in Carroll Hall. April 5: A resident student found a wallet, stole money from it and used the credit cards before turning it in at Millenium Hall. April 4: An apple watch was removed from an unattened gym bag in Burdick Hall. April 4: A commuter student reported unattended airpods taken in Cook Library. April 4: A bomb threat received by faculty members was investigated and determined to be non-creditable in the Center for the Arts. April 2: A resident student was issued a civil citation for under 10 grams of marijuana in Glen Complex Tower A. April 2: A commuter student failed to return property on loan from the university in Cook Library.
The Towerlight’s “Police Blotter” is a representative sample of crimes occurring on and off campus. The blotter is not intended to be all inclusive. For a list of all crime reports, visit www.towson.edu/police.
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Last month, Newell Hall’s basement and first floor flooded after a hot water pipe burst. Thirty-two students were temporarily relocated to vacant double rooms across TU until repairs were completed. MARCUS WHITMAN Staff Writer
At around 5:30 a.m. on March 27, Interim Assistant Vice President of Student Affairs for Housing and Residence Life Christina Olstad was informed of a flood in the Newell Residence Hall. The flooding, she said, began about an hour before that. A hot water pipe in the ceiling burst, flooding the basement and first floor of the building. As fire alarms rang through the halls, residents were forced to evacuate and 32 people were displaced. “It was a fire alarm that went off and I just woke up,” said Fraol Benti, a sophomore IT major who was relocated to Residence Tower after the flood. “I really didn’t hear anything, from my side.” Benti and his roommate watched as other students climbed through their windows to escape the flooding. According to him, there was no real evacuation plan. “As we opened our door, all the water was coming down from the hallway roof,” Benti said. “So, we just choose to go out the window instead of going out that way because the water was really hot.” Olstad said that the water damage from the flood was contained to the side of Newell closest to Stephens Hall. “Facilities [Management] were contacted and contracted
a cleanup crew to fix the water damage and restore the rooms,” Olstad said. Assistant Director of Auxiliary Maintenance for Facilities Management Nick Gingue said that the f looding occurred during the maintenance staff shift change, so there were extra hands available to help clean up the water. “Our staff was in there right away checking to see what the issue was,” Gingue said. “They saw that there was water coming out of the pipe, so they tried to find the valve to shut it off.” Maintenance crews had to shut off water to the entire building to slow the flow of water, which did not stop right away because the water already in the pipes was left to drain out. “Once they were able to slow down the water, the plumbing shop came in on campus to assist,” Gingue said. “They were able to find the issue and stop the water.” According to Gingue, the restoration crew got to Newell within the hour. “That is why we have these restoration companies on call, so they can mobilize quickly and come out,” Gingue said. “Then they assess everything they need to do as well, and then bring in the proper personal as well and proper equipment.” According to Olstad, the displaced students were moved to
vacant double rooms across campus until their rooms in Newell were repaired. However, students like Benti and his roommate were left to deal with damage to their personal belongings. “Some of my shoes got wet and my clothes got wet too,” Benti said. “I had to pick up my backpack and the rest of my shoes and put it on my bed before I left the building.” According to Olstad, there is an insurance claim agent students can talk to about filing a claim. Benti said that students were not given enough information about the claims process, though they were told that it would take 30 to 50 days for the claims to be processed. According to him, students have yet to see the forms they would need to fill out to make a claim. “The only thing the university [has] done, or the building has done, is they told us we could do free laundry for two days in case we have any wet clothes, but other [than] that we haven’t gotten anything,” Benti said. Though students like Benti may be having some difficulty with insurance claims, Olstad said they were able to move back into their rooms last week after a thorough check was done to ensure rooms were dry. “Some students who were displaced moved back on [April 5], while the rest moved back in [April 8],” Olstad said.
April 16, 2019
Tigers discuss intersectionality ALBERT IVORY Staff Writer @Intellectu_Al
The Office of Civic Engagement and Social Responsibility held their New York Times Talk: The Misappropriation of Intersectionality Tuesday in the University Union to help begin a discussion on the impacts of gentrification and intersectionality. The conversation was facilitated by women’s and gender studies professor Courtney Cook. Cook started the discussion by showing a video of the Good Morning America news coverage of Rashon Nelson and Donte Robinson, two black men in Philadelphia who were arrested at a Starbucks last year for sitting while preparing for a business meeting without ordering. While explaining in an interview with the show’s anchor Robin Roberts about what was happening during the incident, Robinson said he “was trying to process the situwation to myself at the time because I was thinking about my family...it didn’t really hit me what was going on and that was real.” Their lawyer, Stewart Cohen, pointed out that, “Starbucks
holds itself as a place for people to meet and have public conversations. Those are words from their website.” Cook noted in the aftermath of the incident that 8,000 Starbucks stores were closed to do “racial-bias training.” However, Cook referenced a New York Times article and summarized that “Starbucks had renewed its image and solidified itself as a helpful factor and home in the community... but Starbucks in hotbed communities can cause community healing and that they show an intersection and combination of racial and class structures.” Cook said that while the article was well-intended, it doesn’t represent the true meaning of intersectionality coined by scholar Kimberle Crenshaw. “Intersectionality is the study of how overlapping or intersecting social identities, in particular minority identities, relate to systems and structures of discrimination,” Cook said. “Intersectionality seeks to heal communities by making sure that it considers the members of those communities at the intersection of all their identity factors.” Cook recalled a graffiti that she encountered on West Mulberry
Street in Baltimore that read, “If Starbucks is so anti-racist, why no location here?” “We know that Baltimore is a predominantly Black area,” Cook said. “We also know that it has a lot of social and economic inequities that cause a lot of poverty, so we don’t see a lot of these corporate spaces, like Starbucks, starting businesses here.” Cook said gentrification is the reason for this. Gentrification is the process of repairing and rebuilding homes and businesses in a deteriorating area accompa-
nied by an influx of middle-class or aff luent people. This can result in the displacement of earlier, usually poorer residents. It also leads to rise in property value and rent costs. The opening of a Starbucks is a leading indicator of gentrification, and is associated with an increase in local housing prices of 0.5%. Starbucks earned $24.7 billion in revenue in 2018. “This is the company that has the money to give to the communities that it’s in, if it to reappropriate and move around its
funds,” Cook said. Lauren Knights, a freshman, found the talk to be important an important discussion for the TU community. “In general, this is a topic looking into marginalized populations in big cities who build these communities from the ground up and have big corporations, like Starbucks and Amazon, who target, come in, and raise the property value to push out those people into areas with even lesser opportunities,” Knights said.
We know that Baltimore is a predominantly black area. We also know that it has a lot of social and economic inequities that cause a lot of poverty, so we don’t see a lot of these corporate spaces, like Starbucks, starting businesses here.
COURTNEY COOK Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies
HEY TIGERS! Earn your stripes and some extra credits. Montgomery College summer classes begin May 28, June 17, & July 8. Tuition starting at $128 per credit. montgomerycollege.edu/visiting
Albert Ivory/ The Towerlight
Students discussed the effects of new Starbucks locations gentrifying communities during the New York Times talk last week.
Montgomery College is an academic institution committed to equal opportunity.
10 April 16, 2019
Arts & Life
Towson’s Greek Week 2019
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MEGHAN HUDSON Assistant Arts & Life Editor
Towson’s fraternities and sororities celebrated the campus’ spring 2019 Greek Week last week, with individual Greek life organizations competing against one another for a charitable cause. The bi-annual celebration consisted of a series of competitions, giving students the opportunity to earn points and raise money for the AileyCamp Baltimore. The competitions were divided into three categories: sorority, fraternity and co-ed. On April 8, a karaoke battle kicked off the competition. Winners of this competition included Delta Phi Epsilon sorority, Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity and Tau Beta Sigma co-ed. April 9 starred two new events to Greek Week, a game show competition and a volleyball tournament. While Alpha Omicron Pi sorority and Phi Kappa Psi fraternity took home first place in the game show competition, Kappa Delta and Alpha Sigma Phi fraternity stole the gold in the volleyball tournament, with Tau Beta Sigma in first for both in the co-ed category. By the end of the week, the winners of Greek Week were Kappa Delta sorority, Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity and Tau Beta Sigma co-ed. This year’s Greek Week wrapped up with the infamous Greek Sing dance
competition. This final event was held in SECU arena on April 11. “Greek Week has been an established week of competition for quite some time,” said Roodinz Vital, Coordinator for the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life. “Greek Sing started in 2011 as a way to do an event during Greek Week that encompassed more of the members and builds bonds in the process of preparing for the competition.” This semester brought a new twist to the competition: the themes laid in the hands of each group. Each fraternity and sorority brought both an original theme, as well as an original choreographed dance to the stage. Kappa Sigma opened Greek Sing, dancing to the theme of “James Bond.” The film theme continued with Kappa Delta Rho’s theme of “Men in Black,” and Chi Phi’s of “Back to the Future.” Sigma Alpha Epsilon and Phi Mu both danced through the decades, while Alpha Epsilon Pi commemorated powerful hits in their theme, “Power Hour.” A popular artist amongst this year’s song choosing was Ariana Grande. Zeta Tau Alpha’s theme of “thank you, next,” resembled Grande’s “thank you, next” music video. Alpha Phi, on the other hand, took a trip to “Alphipalooza” music festival, a spin off of “Lollapalooza.” Other spins included Tri-Delta’s theme of “Delta Airlines” and Kappa Delta’s theme of “KayDee’s Best Dance Crew.” Bringing it home with a comedic
twist were Pi Kappa Alpha with an infomercial like theme of “Frat Boyz Apparel,” Zeta Beta Tau with “ZBT Radio,” and Alpha Xi Delta with “Money,” which featured a college student dreaming of finally having money. Other themes included Alpha Sigma Pi’s western, Phi Sigma Kappa’s boxing match, Alpha Gamma Delta’s “shipwreck,” Alpha Omicron Pi as “Charlie’s Angels,” and Delta Phi Epsilon’s “search for a theme.” Winners of this year’s Greek Sing dance competition were Zeta Beta Tau fraternity and Kappa Delta sorority. This year, Greek Sing raised over $7,000 for the AileyCamp Baltimore. The camp aims to help young people explore their own creative abilities through dance and creative writing. “This year will be the fourth year we will be working with the Camp,” Vital said. “Our community at Towson has made philanthropy a primary focus since former director (now Assistant Vice President of Student Affairs) Matt Lenno took over the office in 2011. Administrators affiliated with Ailey Camp recognized the work of the community and wanted to partner in supporting Ailey Camp, and since 2016 we have done just that.” According to Erin Sherlock, director of programming for the Panhellenic council, “The Alvin Ailey Camp is the sole recipient of all the proceeds. Proceeds do not benefit anyone else but the Alvin Ailey Camp.” - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com.
Meghan Hudson/ The Towerlight
Towson’s Zeta Beta Tau fraternity took on “ZBT Radio” as their theme for this year’s Greek Sing dance competition. The group’s performance impressed the audience enough to earn them a win.
Arts & Life
April 16, 2019
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Anderson .Paak dropped his latest album, “Ventura,” last week, giving rap and R&B fans early-21st-century nostalgia, having features with famed musicians likes Andre 3000 and Nate Dogg.
Music’s .Paak-man TIMOTHY COFFMAN Columnist
Anderson .Paak has been making quite an impression on the hip-hop scene since the dawn of the 2010s. With his exquisite blend of rapping and R&B and funk grooves, his music has a throwback undercurrent while still staying innovative. This culminated in his Grammy win for his song “Bubblin” and his incredible previous release “Oxnard.” With this new “Ventura” album out in the world, how does it stack up compared to .Paak’s track record? For starters, this album opens strongly with the track “Come Home,” with a feature by Andre 3000. With 3000’s lack of output since the breakup of OutKast, this was definitely a treat to hear. The features on this album are also stellar with .Paak calling in Smokey Robinson for a track, as well as using a few takes from the late great Nate Dogg on the closer “What Can We Do?” While the features are extensive, .Paak has the beats and lyrical flow to hold his own amongst them. The album is centered around a theme of heartbreak and excess. This is seen with the achingly sad “Make It Better” and the two-part love-drug lament that is “Reachin’ 2 Much.” There are also songs which touch on more politically based issues and social messages like “King James” and “Yada Yada.” Even the fragment of a song “Good Heels” is still a great
introspective look at infidelity. This album holds together amazingly well, but there are some nitpicky things that don’t put the album over the moon for me. The biggest crime is that it has to be the follow-up to “Oxnard. While this album isn’t bad, “Oxnard” was .Paak at a musical milestone, where he was pulling in all the big name acts from Kendrick Lamar to Pusha T. Is it necessarily fair to compare this album to its predecessor? Not at all, but I would by means start with this album as your introduction to Anderson .Paak. However, the album is still a spellbinding listen when taken on the surface. The lush instrumentation gives the album a warm feeling which helps to disorient you even more when you hear about the sadness laced throughout the lyrics. The standout instrument in this album is the bass guitar. The way in which it is mixed allows it to weave throughout the songs with a sound that has a certain smoothness to it. Overall, this album is a triumph for .Paak. The streak that he has been on with his last few releases has been exciting to see. I also feel like this is a streak that is not going to diminish any time soon. At this point, the listener is seeing .Paak as an artist who has just come up in the ranks and has only begun to impress us. While his previous output has been phenomenal, .Paak definitely has the potential to release another career-defining record. In that respect, this album does its job by leaving you chomping at the bit to see what .Paak is going to be doing down the line.
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Puzzles on page 13
12 April 16, 2019
Arts & Life
A trendy farewell for Trendy Tiger Arts & Life’s Kerry Ingram looks ahead KERRY INGRAM Arts & Life Editor @Glaminista08
Hi, Towson Tigers. This is Kerry Ingram, officially writing to you from The Towerlight for the very last time. For those of you who may be unaware, ya girl is officially in her last month of her undergraduate college career. I am so excited to graduate and finish off another amazing chapter, but it also means I have to have closure with a lot of different things I’ve become accustomed to over the last four years of my life. The Towerlight is one of those things. When I came to Towson, I knew I
wanted to be a part of this newspaper my first day. I was determined to find out more about the paper, I hunted down the Towerlight’s table at the regular involvement fair the campus held, and I immediately signed my name down to be part of the video crew. As a commuter student with a very limited schedule, I quickly realized I had no availability to cover any videos my freshman year, so I yeeted out of the group with no words or heads up. I decided to try again with more determination my sophomore year, and that’s when my relationship with this paper officially began. I wanted to write about something I liked, to ensure that my writing would be authentic and consistent, and so I decided to pitch the idea of
starting Trendy Tiger. When I began Trendy Tiger back in fall 2016, I never really thought about it ending. I was a beginning journalist then, a little college sophomore with no real writing experience but an abundance of passion for fashion and using my voice. I went from being a faceless columnist to becoming part of the editorial staff, to even rebooting and rebranding the newspaper’s YouTube channel. My semesters here came and went, with each being filled with a lot of work, new experiences and life lessons that I gained at this paper. The Towerlight taught me to be consistent, to stick to deadlines, to think outside of the box while also thinking about what people want to read. It taught me to be a better edi-
tor, to break outside of my comfort zone and to open up to others in the most authentic and true-telling way, whether it be through my in-person interactions with my co-workers/ friends or through my writing. As grateful as I am for all of that, I think I am most grateful for the people that make up The Towerlight itself. This staff is one-of-a-kind, and I know that I am completely biased in saying this, however I truly feel like this crew is one of the best on campus. We meet every Monday (the most dreaded day of the week, might I add) to work diligently while also still managing to have fun with one another. We’ve become a true family here, with ups and downs, great jokes and bad puns, support and loyalty, patience and understanding. I’m going to miss working with Karuga, one of the coolest people I’ve met at Towson and my home skillet biscuit, on a weekly basis. I’m going to miss Bailey’s laughter whenever she cracks a joke in the dead silence of the office, to help add some light to our days. I’m going to miss Mel’s relationship stories, their uniqueness leaving me both in shock and amusement. I’m going to miss Tim being my early-morning-buddy and one of
the only other people who is actually fully alive before noon. I’m going to miss Tori and her subscription box unboxings she shares with me every other week in our corner of the office. I’m going to miss Brendan and his old-man tangents of explaining things in so specific detail that it makes you wonder where the heck he stores all of this information. And of course, I’m going to miss Mike and his dealing with us on a regular basis, despite how random we all may be. Being a part of The Towerlight was one of the best decisions I could have ever made, and it really pains me that today marks the last day of my time here. I can’t say thank you enough to everyone I’ve gotten the chance to work with, from older staffs to our current, as well as to my section’s writers and contributors. You all have made my college experience truly beautiful, and I hope that you know that you will always hold a special place in my heart. So here’s to looking at the future with rose-colored readers, my friends. Because reading is fundamental, and reading The Towerlight, more specifically, is all the more worthwhile. Until we meet again, Kerry Ingram
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To wrap up the longest homestand of the season, the Tigers hosted Charleston in a threegame series this weekend at Tiger Softball Stadium. After dropping game one on Saturday, Towson walked off in game two to even the series before falling on Sunday in the series finale. Going for the series victory on Sunday, the Tigers fell behind early as Charleston built a 4-1 lead through the first three innings. Towson cut into the Cougar lead in the fourth with a groundout by freshman pitcher Breanna McDowell, bringing home the runner from third. A double later in the inning by junior first baseman Madison Wilson brought the Tigers within one heading into the fifth inning. Charleston pulled ahead to begin the inning with a three-run home run, taking a 7-3 lead. Looking to make a comeback, junior pitcher Smith-Harrington stepped to the plate and hit a home run to left field
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to cut the deficit to three. But that would be all that Towson could do, falling in the final game 7-4. Sophomore pitcher Melissa Abrahamian took the loss after only managing to go two innings before the Tigers went to the bullpen. Abrahamian was unable to record a strikeout, and freshman Sara Johnson got all four of Towson’s strikeouts in the game. “Charleston kept answering, as soon as we got it close they answered back,” said Head Coach Lisa Costello. Looking to even the series in game two, the Tigers had some difficulties at the plate, collecting just one hit through the first two innings and retiring in order in the second inning. After two scoreless innings, Charleston scored the first run in the third inning coming off a base hit RBI. With the bases loaded in the fifth inning, senior utility Nicole Stockinger brought home the first Towson run with a base hit to left field. Later in the inning, McDowell brought in two more runs to give the Tigers a 3-1 lead. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com
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April 16, 2019
Get out the brooms Towson sweeps CAA weekend set of games GLENN KAPLAN Staff Writer
After scoring 16 goals on Friday night against Elon, the Tigers looked to keep its foot on the gas pedal against William & Mary in a Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) matchup. Towson’s (4-9, 2-1 CAA) offense was in sync for the entire game as they took down the Tribe (6-7, 1-3 CAA) 22-12 Sunday afternoon at Johnny Unitas Stadium. “I’m really liking the chemistry that we’re seeing on the offensive end of the field,” said Head Coach Sonia LaMonica. “It’s nice to see it’s not a flash in the pan from Friday night. We’re really clicking. Our transition is continuing to build and look good.” It has been a rare occasion this season that the Tigers scored the first goal of the game, but sophomore attacker Kaitlin Thornton bucked that trend with a goal just 2:06 into the contest. Towson scored the first three goals of the game less than six minutes into the game. The Tigers used their speed to their advantage, using a balanced approach to take a 9-4 lead into halftime.
“I think because the chemistry has been continuing to develop really well, our youngsters are getting more opportunity and continuing to get more reps,” LaMonica said. “They’re starting to understand each other’s strengths and weaknesses.” Following a strong first half, the Tigers were poised to put the game away early. After a three-goal run by William & Mary trimmed the lead to four, Towson outscored the Tribe 8-2 for the rest of the game. Thornton contributed three goals in that run. “My teammates are setting me up because they know if I have the ball, I’m more than likely going to drive because that’s kind of my role is to drive and then get the double team so they clear through for me,” Thornton said. “We’re pushing through transition and I think the chemistry is just getting better and better every time we play.” Thornton was one of four Tigers to score at least three goals in the game, along with junior midfielder Shelby Stack, senior attacker Natalie Sulmonte and sophomore midfielder Rayna Deltuva. Towson played well defensively too, limiting William & Mary to just 18 shots on goal. Deltuva was a key
part of the strong defense. “Rayna came up with some great defensive plays,” LaMoncia said. Junior goalie Kiley Keating wasn’t tested often, but she rose to the occasion and made saves when she needed to. The Tigers crushed the Elon Phoenix 16-4 Friday night at Johnny Unitas Stadium to earn their first conference win of the year. “I was really pleased, really excited for our team tonight,” LaMonica said. “They really executed the things that we’ve been talking about and working on through the week. Our tempo offensively really helped spark and generate better opportunities.” After surrendering the first goal of the game, Towson outscored Elon 9-0 for the rest of the half, including a goal scored by Sulmonte with nine seconds remaining in the first half. “I think coming off of last Sunday against JMU, we kind of just knew we needed to work harder this week and put in that extra work,” Sulmonte said. “It helped that the defense played awesome.” Sulmonte finished the game with a season high six goals. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Freshman midfielder Kerri Liucci played all 60 minutes in Towson’s victory over William & Mary on Sunday. The Tigers scored more goals in their two victories than in the previous four games combined.
Javon Fields Baseball
Freshman outfielder Javon Fields was a key factor as the Tigers earned three wins last week. Fields started in all five games and posted a .333 batting average with four RBIs, scoring seven runs. Fields hit two doubles and a triple as well as two stolen bases, earning the CAA Baseball Freshman of the Week honors for the first time in his career.
16 April 16, 2019
Tigers press play on esports league Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Senior Michael Bearer, the Towson Esports League president, alongside junior Josh Finkelstein, the Towson Esports League vice president, has worked to reboot the team. The league was revivied by Bearer after the founding member left to pursue a caeer as a commentator in the esports scene. The league currently has 39 members on their Discord app. BAILEY HENDRICKS Senior Editor @imsimplybailey
TIM KLAPAC Sports Editor @pacofkla
Playing video games is a leisurely activity to engage in after a long day. But for those who compete in esports, it is a livelihood. Towson University students who are members of the Towson Esports League may not yet be getting sponsors like some of the top professional players who receive billions of dollars to play. But, they are able to practice together and bond over their shared interest in gaming. Michael Bearer, a Towson senior and president of the Towson Esports League said, “Each game is different. It’s about getting everybody together, going into a custom game without anybody else in it, talking about things and working on team play.” Bearer is helping to relaunch the SGA-affiliated student group after the group “fell to the wayside” a few years ago. The group currently has 39 members on the application Discord to chat with each other while gaming. Bearer said the group is flexible about what games they play. “If someone wants to start a CS (counter-strike): Go team,” Bearer said. “We’re more than willing to do
that, we just have to have enough people. We’ll go into any game we can.” Popular games in the esports community include Overwatch, League of Legends, Dota 2 and Hearthstone, but there are still many other games the community plays in competitions. Towson’s league has two teams, currently: a Hearthstone team and an Overwatch team. What sets collegiate esports aside from the standard college athletics program is the money. “We can compete in other tournaments and win cash prizes instead of just scholarships,” Bearer said. Dota 2’s 2018 tournament, known as “The International,” featured a first place prize of more than $11 million. The total cash prizes exceeded $25.5 million for the top 18 teams. Twenty-seven million people watched the 2014 championship tournament for League of Legends, according to the June 22, 2015 issue of ESPN The Magazine. Nearby universities also have their own esports leagues. In February of 2018, Stevenson University opened its new student activities space on its campus, including a new home for its Esports club -- a state of the art Esports suite outfitted with gaming chairs, 25 custom gaming PCs with 144hz monitors, a flat-screen TV and a projector. Stevenson’s esports suite may sound like a pipe dream for Bearer, but he is hoping to one day have a space to practice on Towson’s campus.
“Our end goal is a space for us where CPUs are provided,” he said. “At the end of the day, esports has a threshold that you need to meet. One of those things is a capable PC. It would be great if the school could provide that so somebody who isn’t sure if they’re good enough can get a shot on a computer that we use.” UMBC, too, has an esports league on its campus. The group has over 300 members on Facebook and has been invited as guests to the finals of the Collegiate Starleague, the world’s largest collegiate gaming organization. The UMBC league has had alumni such as Maria Creveling in the League of Legends Championship series. Creveling was the first female professional player in this series for the team “Renegades.” The University of Maryland (UMD) has not shied away from the esports scene either, with 1,421 members on their Discord page. Their team made it to the national quarterfinals of a tournament on the Big Ten Network in 2017, with players winning $5,000 worth of scholarship money each just for participating on Maryland’s team. Vice President of the Towson Esports League and Towson junior Josh Finkelstein said he’s enjoyed
esports for the past few years due to its uniqueness. “It’s cool, because it’s different from sports where sometimes you sense there are real rivalries, it’s more like everyone’s like having fun, but they’re having fun on a fun, competitive level,” Finkelstein said. Finkelstein also said that the reboot of the club left members feeling hopeful. He said that “we opened it and emails [were] just pouring in” and that 20 people joined the league’s Discord in only the first week with little branding and marketing thus far. “We’re just at the beginning, Finkelstein said. “I just wanted to put out a feeler to see if it’s going to catch or anything… and people were like, ‘Yeah let’s do it 100 percent.’ And there’s some good players too.” Finkelstein is also trying to set up an official Tespa chapter for Towson’s league. Tespa is a collegiate American esports organization. “That’ll help us with events, give us a lot of ideas, and back us to help us make more of a more solid, real team,” he said. “It can draw more people and interest. I want to help the school as much as I want them
to help us. There’s over 100 schools that are registered under Tespa and having that for Towson is a good selling point.” Finkelstein also wishes to one day have a space dedicated to esports on Towson’s campus. “We’re at a good point where I want to take it to the school and really see what we can do with that, see if we can get our own space, get our own computers, have our own events with it.” Although no specific plans for an esports lounge are in the University Union’s renovation plans, Towson University President Kim Schatzel acknowledged the satisfaction of playing video games growing up. “I am outstanding at Pac-Man,” she said. “Not good. Outstanding. I spent many a quarter when I was in college on Pacman. So I would say Pac-Man is my game.” Towson freshman Zac Soper sees esports as a good way to get to know people with like-interests and is surprised with how lucrative it is. “On one hand, I think it’s kind of ridiculous that people who sit and play videogames can get paid that much money whereas working-class citizens bust their butt from 9 to 5 don’t make as much money,” Soper said. “But also, if you’re able to franchise off of your hobbies, I’m just coming from a place of jealousy because that would be awesome if something you really like and you do for fun can make you that much money.”