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Football puts on annual spring game

ULM shows Muddy Gras spirit

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April 15, 2019

Opinion: Politicians should be open to criticism P 4

Walk A Mile: Annual march honors sexual assault survivors

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Students unite for higher education P 3

Community raises money for suicide prevention P




April 15, 2019



Monday, April So Sweet MondayZ, 11 a.m., Hangar Overhang


Tuesday, April Kayak Races & Henna, 11 a.m., Wesley Foundation

Ouachita Parish

Hip Hop Dance Class, 7 p.m., Brown Annex Studios

Wednesday, April


International Food Festival, 11 a.m., The Hangar Zumba: African Caribbean Edition, 5:30 p.m., ULM Activity Center The Kook-Out, 6 p.m., Bayou Park ULM Brass Trio, 7:30 p.m., EmyLou Biedenharn Hall

Thursday, April International Student Gala, 6:30 p.m., The Hangar

Friday, April No events planned

Saturday, April No events planned

Sunday, April No events planned

18 19

20 21



MCT-The son of a Louisiana sheriff's deputy has been arrested in connection to fires at three black churches. The suspect has been identified as Holden Matthews, according to KATC. Two of the Baptist houses of worship, Greater Union Baptist Church, which was destroyed on April 2 and Mount Pleasant Missionary Baptist Church, which burned on April 4, were located in Opelousas, St. Landry Parish. St. Mary Baptist Church in Port Barre was destroyed on March 26. All three churches had been in existence for over a century. The churches, which were situated on rural highways, were set ablaze in the early morning hours. According to fire marshal Butch Browning about 200 officials were working on the investigation.

MCT-The Las Vegas Catholic Diocese on Friday released the names of 32 clergy members and one volunteer who were accused of child sexual abuse and who had served in Nevada within the last several decades. Bishop George Leo Thomas, who opened the broad investigation, said the "church has been in secrecy and denial for a very long time." The Las Vegas Diocese said of the 33 people listed, 21 are dead and the remainder had been removed from their positions, most before the investigation began. Thomas said all the information gathered on the accused had been turned over to law enforcement. According to Thomas, since 1995, the Diocese has paid around $15 million in settlement claims, counseling costs and attorney fees.

MCT-Sudan's military ousted and arrested President Omar al-Bashir on Thursday. It marked an end to the authoritarian's nearly 30-year rule following months of intense protests. Sudanese Defense Minister Awad ibn Ouf declared "the uprooting of this regime," saying the government, presidency and parliament were dissolved. A military council will oversee a two-year transition period while suspending the constitution, he said. Sudan's airspace was to be closed for 24 hours and its borders shut "until further notice," ibn Ouf added. Ibn Ouf did not disclose al-Bashir's whereabouts but said he was being held "in a safe location." According to ibn Ouf, security services had long been keeping track of the "mismanagement, corruption and absence of justice" in state institutions.

Suspect arrested for diamond rings theft for 3 church fires Man arrested

According to KNOE, police arrested a Monroe man accused of stealing approximately $20,000 in jewelry from a West Monroe business. Marcus Williams, 34, took the jewelry from Showcase Jewelry on Cypress St. in West Monroe on Tuesday, according to the arrest report. Police were able to track down the suspect's vehicle, which was also stolen, and found the suspect in a storage room several houses away from the abandoned vehicle. Police said Williams would not admit to stealing the rings but did tell them that he saw the rings on a washing machine where he was hiding. He was booked on charges of felony theft, resisting an officer, and illegal possession-greater than 25K.

Church releases names President ousted after of alleged sex abusers months of protest


QUOTE "Doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment."

Baton Rouge



April 15

Oprah Winfrey, media executive

Front page credits: Main photo: Amelia Wilkes Top sidebar photo: Prajal Prasai Bottom sidebar photo: Miles Jordan Top left photo: Miles Jordan Top right photo: Miles Jordan

photo by Miles Jordan

Azaria Revels swings on the Deluxe Swing Ride brought by the Campus Activities Board on Tuesday at Bayou Park. CAB brought similar attractions on campus throughout the Spring Fever week.

1912: RMS Titanic sinks at 2:27 a.m. off Newfoundland as the band plays on, with the loss of more than 1,400 people. 1952: Franklin National Bank issues first bank credit card. 1981: Janet Cooke says her Pulitzer award winning story about an 8-year-old heroin addict is a lie, Washington Post relinquishes Pulitzer Prize on fabricated story. 1986: The U.S. launches Operation El Dorado Canyon against Libya. 1991: Maximum NY State unemployment benefits raised to $280 per week. 1997: Fire sweeps through a campsite of Muslims making the Hajj pilgrimage; the official death toll is 343. 2012: Four hundred Islamist Militants escape from a Pakistan prison after an insurgent attack.

April 15, 2019




UL System

Universities come together to support higher education by Sisam Shrestha

Students from different parts of Louisiana gathered at the State Capitol on Wednesday to support higher education in the state as part of the University of Louisiana System Day. Mr. ULM 2018 Derek Healy was among the many Warhawks who made the day trip to Baton Rouge. “I was really interested to meet others at the capitol and help represent my college,” Healy said. The UL System is made of nine public universities in the state. More than 1,200 attendees including faculty, staff and alumni attended the event on Wednesday. The nine universities showcased their different academic programs and spirit groups to the state leaders. Warhawks Leah Huber and Blake Oden sang a song from the "Phantom of the Opera" that they performed this semester. According to Healy, the student attendance at the event mattered a lot. “We need voices and bodies to


show up, show support and bring some reality to these lawmakers when it comes time to talking about education. They need to see the impact they will make by meeting us," Healy said. "Showing up shows them that we care about what we’re standing for." Like Healy, Henry Diaz made the journey to the capitol to show his support for higher education. “By going to Diaz the capitol, it shows that we care what happens to our education system. It shows that we are working towards a better future, especially since we are the future,” said Diaz, a senior marketing major. photo by Prajal Prasai contact Sisam Shrestha at

TOGETHER FOR FUTURE: Ace the Warhawk along with representatives from other universities stand in front of the capitol building on Wednesday for the University of Louisiana System day.

Survey offers free parking pass for lucky student Warhawks now have a chance to win an all-access parking pass by taking a simple survey. The offer is made possible through the Assessment office which is in the process of trying to get students to complete the national Student Satisfactory Inventory survey.

The survey is open for all current students and can be accessed through a personalized link sent in their Warhawks email. Students are asked to check an email from for their personalized link. Students can take the survey and

be entered to win either 50 dollars of Flex money or a One-Of-A-Kind parking tag that can be used anywhere on campus except reserved, residential or handicap spots. According to Kelli Cole, assessment research analyst and an instructor of English, the survey “provides crucial

information to ULM, which allows us to be the Best on the Bayou.” Students are asked to contact Cole at with further questions.



April 15, 2019



Pedestrians first, not pedestrians only As students, we go through a lot of stress and sometimes in coping with the stress, we make crude or often darknatured jokes about things we shouldn’t be joking about. One of the biggest things we joke about is letting ourselves get hit by a car while crossing the streets on campus. Unfortunately, the constant joking about not caring what happens to us in the crosswalk has led to us actually not caring about what happens when we walk across campus. You can’t walk onto oncoming traffic and look at them as they’re speeding toward you, wondering if they’ll ever stop. It’s not the safest decision. Instead of doing that, survey your surroundings before crossing. It doesn’t take much time to look both ways before

Stubbs 131 700 University Avenue Monroe, LA 71209 Editor in chief - Sisam Shrestha Co-managing editor design - Prajal Prasai Co-managing editor news - Ethan Dennis Opinion editor - Alfonzo Galvan Freestyle editor - Kaitlin Maness Multimedia editor - Samrat Dhakal Photo editor - Miles Jordan Sports editor - Nate Nasworthy Copy editor - Ashlyn Dupree

crossing. There comes a certain arrogance with knowing you have the right of way when crossing the street. You think, “They have to stop for me.” They should stop for you, but nothing will guarantee they will. Don’t push your luck. Getting “paid” for being hit isn’t worth it. You won’t be able to enjoy those new-found riches while in the hospital or six feet under. And if it’s actually you struggling with suicidal thoughts, visit the counseling center on campus. There’s always another option. In the end, let’s stop with the joking before somebody gets hurt. Keep your head up when crossing, people. We’re only here for short time before we move on with our lives.

The opinions expressed in personal columns are the opinions of the author and not necessarily the opinions of the editors, staff, adviser or the university. Unsigned editorials represent the collective opinion of The Hawkeye’s editorial board, but not necessarily the opinions of the adviser or the university. The Hawkeye (USPS #440-700) is published weekly except vacation, exam & holiday periods by The University of Louisiana at Monroe, 700 University Avenue, Monroe, LA 71209. Annual subscription price is $15.00. Periodicals Postage Paid at Monroe, LA 71203. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to The Hawkeye, 700 University Ave., Stubbs 131, Monroe, LA 71209-8832.


Politicians should be scrutinized at times

Joe Biden, a favorite among democrats to win the office, has been having a rough time as of late. He can’t shake the allegations that he’s been inappropriate to women around him. While Uncle Joe and other politicians can blame the media for spreading these allegations, they can’t do their jobs and expect that they won’t be scrutinized for their actions, past or present. The problem that Biden is facing comes after Lucy Flores, a Nevada politician, said she felt “uneasy” after the former vice president kissed her on the back of the head in 2014, according to a report by CNN. Biden did little to assure his supporters that he hadn’t been inappropriate by trying to joke the allegations off. Biden isn’t the only politician facing similar allegations or dealing with backlash over something he has said or done. President Donald Trump faces

this type of treatment all the time. Have we forgotten the “Grab her by the pussy,” comment? We shouldn’t forget the comment or avoid the discussion surrounding it. The president has named the media “public enemy number one” for helping shed light on some of these incidents that have caused him trouble. Other politicians are quick to condemn the media to hell as soon as something negative comes out about them. Honestly, if it was up to them their press release teams would approve every story involving them before it ran. That’s not fair for the people though. We, as Americans, deserve transparency when it comes to our politicians and leaders. How can women vote for a man that has a history of sexual harassment? We need to know everything about who is trying to run this country. We can’t base our judgment off what they say during their campaign events. That’s just stupid. Actions speak louder than words people. Men like Biden and Trump may say they didn’t have bad intentions with the women that accuse them of inappropriate behavior but that doesn’t change the fact that the women felt violated. Attacking the accusers or media for spreading these allegations is wrong. If my future president is out their committing serious crimes, of course

he doesn’t want the world to find out but too bad we have that right. And of course, there are the critics, usually late-night talk show hosts, that use politicians and their everyday lives as comedic ammo. I don’t care if some of their jokes hurt. It’s sort of called free speech, a very big thing in this country that we value. At the end of the day, all the criticism and negative attention come with the territory. As a politician, you’ll always have a spotlight on you. Being a public figure means you’ll always be in the public spotlight. Since they are humans themselves, politicians do have a hard time with all the negative attention they get. Here’s my advice to any politician that doesn’t like being talked about or held under a magnifying glass. Quit your job and go back to being a regular, private citizen like the rest of us. As the presidential race speeds up, more and more politicians will complain about the attention they receive. Don’t ask for the scrutinizing to stop. Keep asking questions, people. A lot of them will be your future leaders and the vetting process for them to win our votes should be just as thorough as the one we’re wanting to require for immigrants.

contact Alfonzo Galvan at

Circulation director - Emerald Singh 318-342-5453 Faculty adviser Dr. Christopher Mapp 318 342 5454 Assistant director Kristin Nieman 318 342 5450 Feedback 318 342 5453 newsroom 318 342 5452 fax

Don’t agree? Let us know! Contact the writers or the editor at

cartoon courtesy of MCT Campus

April 15, 2019





Get used to other cultures, try them out Ashlyn Dupree The U.S. is ever changing. It continuously grows into a more diverse nation with different kinds of races, ethnicities, social classes, religions, genders and cultures. As the U.S. grows into a more diverse country, it’s time for citizens to try out the many different cultures that are a part of this nation. In 2017, the National Public Radio found that ethnic groups like Asian, Hispanic, Native Hawaiian and African-American increased at most

by three percent while the White population only grew by 0.5 percent. Also, according to the Washington Post, Southern states are more diverse than Northern states. Southern states have a mixture of different ethnicities like Hispanic, White and Native American. So, we are continuously growing into a more diverse nation, and as we become more diverse, we need to be willing to try out different cultures. What I mean by this is we need to step out of our comfort zone and become friends with people who have a different culture than us. We have a tendency of having friends that are like us. Normally, we have friends with similar interests as us, friends that talk like us and friends with the same religion. But when we are only friends with people like us, we miss out on the opportunity to grow ourselves. It’s time to step out of that safe bubble

of just being friends with people like yourself and step into the rich diversity that America offers. You are probably thinking, “Yeah, it would be cool to meet people of a different culture than me, but I don’t know how.” Well, I am here to give you some tips on how to try out different cultures. First, there are many opportunities right here at ULM. This week is International Week at ULM. Go meet people from different cultures all across the globe. They would probably love to share their rich cultures and pride. One great way to see the diverse culture at ULM is to attend the food festival on Wednesday. Different cultures have different ways of seasoning their food. You can learn what kind of seasonings they use and how they prepare the food. And trust me, your tummy will thank you for bringing you to the food festival.

Community Service

Another event that would be fun to attend during the International Week is the flag parade. You can see all the flags from different cultures and the people that attend ULM. There are plenty of events all throughout the year that students can attend to grow their knowledge about different cultures. Second, travel the world. I know, traveling is expensive, but you don’t have to travel far. There are places within America you can go to experience the rich diversity of cultures. Some places to visit with diversity would be Oakland, California, Queens, New York and Washington, D.C. But from personal experience, the best way to learn from a culture is to actually go to the country. I have been to Mexico on mission trips numerous times and every time I go I never want to leave. I normally stay at an orphanage and

one of my favorite things to do while I am there is to spend time with those kids. Every time I go they teach me new Spanish words and help refresh my old ones. When you go to a country with a different culture, you become saturated in the culture and it really helps you understand the richness that comes from that culture. My last advice is that if you do go to a different country or learn about a culture, let it grow. When I would come home from trips, I would stop speaking the words I learned in Spanish. I stopped trying to find ways to let the culture I had learned grow in my daily life. Expand your knowledge about the different cultures we have in America and let it continuously grow because the U.S. will continue to grow in diversity with or without you. contact Ashlyn Dupree at


Help out homeless Border problem greater as much as possible than just avocados

Killian Hicks One day last spring I decided to help out the homeless in the area, and it changed my life. There are now two homeless shelters in Monroe, the DeSiard St. Shelter and the Salvation Army. There are none from Baton Rouge to Little Rock and from Jackson to Shreveport. Anyone in search of assistance, who is not in one of those cities, is put on a bus for Monroe. There is a funding and space issue at our local shelters. When the DeSiard St. Shelter was in danger of shutting down due to lack of funding, I decided to help out. I started a charity last year called #SpareSomeChange. I took mason jars to different local businesses. Whatever pocket change people had, they could drop it into the jar for me to take. Over 30 locally owned businesses had jars. The funds went to the shelter. What was truly life changing about the

campaign was what happened when I began to volunteer at the shelter. I worked the breakfast shift three days a week. I stood outside with the guests waiting for the doors to open. We call them guests because this is not their forever home. Each guest at the shelter left an impression on my heart that will never be forgotten. It is the smallest things that can change someone’s day for the better and I saw it happen every morning. One morning after putting out the new pot of coffee, an old lady made her cup then walked over to me. She looked me in the eyes and through tears thanked me. She said, “You truly don’t understand what you’re doing. Please don’t forget about us.” It shook me to my core. Why do I say all this? It is not for a pat on the back, but to urge you to look into helping out with homeless. It doesn’t have to be in Monroe. There are roughly 554,000 homeless people across the U.S. It could be serving food, donating clothes or starting your own charity. Beginning to work with those who are less fortunate will change your life in for the better. If you would like to find out how you can help out with the DeSiard St. Shelter or the Salvation Army reach out to me or contact the DeSiard St. Shelter or the Salvation Army.

contact Killian Hicks at

John Radcliffe Around 1.3 billion dollars worth of avocados were imported into the U.S. from Mexico in 2015, according to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. President Trump can’t cast out all the avocados along with the Mexicans if he closes the Mexican-American border. It could cause horrible consequences. What would Monroe do if all of its Mexican restaurants had to stop serving guacamole? One of Monroe’s hometown favorites is literally named Avocados. It’s not just avocados. There’s also people who commute in and out of the country every day and year. According to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, not only avocados, but $112 billion in machinery, $74 billion in vehicles and $14 million in fuel were also imported in 2015 alone. Mexico is the third-largest exporter of goods to the U.S. Maybe Trump should reconsider his rash

approach to the issue at hand. Trump’s reason for threatening to close the southern border is because illegal immigrants are smuggling drugs into the country. Just because he wants to stop illegal immigration doesn’t mean he has to take extreme measures. On March 29, Trump tweeted, “CONGRESS MUST CHANGE OUR WEAK IMMIGRATION LAWS NOW.” If this does not occur, then Trump will take matters into his own hand to cut off all ties with our southern neighbors. Closing down the southern border means that all these people will lose their jobs and way home for the holidays. No more vacations in Cancun for spring break. This isn’t the first time Trump has threatened to close borders either. When Trump came into office in Jan., he made a promise in his presidential campaign to build a wall. However, over the course of the two years Trump has been in office, he has gotten carried away with this idea making it solely Mexico’s responsibility to pay for the wall. Now in this current circumstance, we’re at a standstill again. Mexico won’t pay for the wall and the U.S. shouldn’t close the border completely. It doesn’t matter who does what, the important thing is there needs to be a solution to this border crisis, or rather a compromise. Keep the avocados and hard-working people in and the drugs out. contact John Radcliffe at



April 15, 2019



photos by Ashlyn Dupree

STICKIN’ IT TO AUTISM: Keyanna Gayden (left) places superhero tattoos on two young girls’ hands at the fifth annual Superheroes for Autism 5K Run/Walk. Gayden works at The Behavior Train which is a pediatric behavior therapy clinic that offers Applied Behavior Analysis Services to Ouachita Parish and the surrounding areas.

Runners brave through storms for autism spectrum disorder

Annual 5K event entertains children, raises money

PERSISTENCE: Despite heavy rain, participants still ran in the fifth annual Superheroes for Autism 5K Run/Walk. This event was sponsored by Family Solutions’ Autism Center and The Behavior Train among other sponsors.

by Ashlyn Dupree

Tears of joy fell down Chanda Montague’s face as she saw all the people who braved the storm to come to the fifth annual Superheroes for Autism 5K Run/Walk. To Montague, the Superheroes for Autism Walk event coordinator, this meant more to her than most because her nephew, Ryan Ellis, has autism spectrum disorder. Montague said that she and Ryan’s mother, Amy Ellis, noticed that there weren’t many organizations to raise awareness about autism, and they decided to change that. “Amy loves 5K’s, and we asked Ryan who his favorite superhero was. He said, ‘Superman,’ so we decided to become superheroes for autism,” Montague said. Montague’s dream of raising awareness about ASD was made possible with organizations like the Autism Center of Family Solutions and The Behavior Train who have helped sponsor the Superheroes for Autism Walk. Keyanna Gayden, an employee

TOUCH IT, FEEL IT: A young girl plays in a pool of corn which is used as a sensory object for autistic children. At the Superheroes for Autism 5K Run/Walk, children were able to play with the corn, green spaghetti noodles and sensory balls. These objects are fun to play with and help comfort the children.

for The Behavior Train, said that having the Superheroes for Autism Walk helps people break stereotypes about those with ASD. “When a lot of people think of autistic children, they think of kids who don’t have any type of social skills, but a lot of kids just need someone to work with them one on one. I hate when people push autistic children to the side and think they will never be able to function

in the real world,” Gayden said. Mollie Cline said she learns something new everyday from those who have ASD. “These kids are so unique Gayden and each one is so different. They teach us every day how to be

more patient, to engage with others, how to get outside our comfort zones and be able to join them and their world and what they are going through,” said Cline, the clinical director for pediatric therapy of Family Solutions. At the Superheroes for Autism Walk, there were over 20 booths from around the area that helped sponsor the event, according to Montague. Each booth had fun activities to do like washable tattoos, stickers, games and sensory buckets. Cline said that she was glad that the Autism Center of Family Solutions were able to bring a fun booth with “sensory buckets” filled with items like colored spaghetti, sensory balls and puzzle pieces to paint. For the past few years, this event has been held at Kiroli Park, but due to the rain, the event was moved to

Ike Hamilton Expo Center. However, Montague said that even the rain did not stop people from running for those with autism. Cline “The people out there running in the rain are awesome because that shows they are going through obstacles of the rain just like our superheroes do every day,” Montague said. Montague also said that every year, this event has raised over $45,000 for Families Helping Families of NELA which is a resource center that serves individuals with developmental disabilities and their families. contact Ashlyn Dupree at

April 15, 2019





photos by Miles Jordan

FALLEN SOULS: Proudly wearing beaded bracelets that symbolize how suicide has affected their lives, participants at the first ever Hope Walks Here suicide prevention walk in Louisiana stride in solidarity for suicide prevention. The walk had over 200 participants and raised around $15,000 for suicide prevention.

Suicide prevention walk unites community by Kaitlin Maness ULM students and Monroe locals wearing multi-colored beads gathered in the Activity Center Saturday to participate in Hope Walks Here, an event dedicated to raising money and awareness for suicide prevention. Unlike at Mardi Gras parades, the beads worn at Hope Walks Here had meaning behind them. Each colored necklace symbolized a different way the person wearing them had been affected by suicide. The organizer of the event, Amanda Coker, said, “Almost everyone that you meet has been touched by suicide in some way.” That much was obvious staring out into the crowd of people wearing green, purple, red and other colored necklaces. Participants wore their pain around their necks and walked in honor of those who lost their lives to suicide. Coker’s passion for suicide prevention began when her brother took his own life win 2010. To this day, his death still impacts Coker and her family. Losing him is what made Coker decide to bring Hope Walks Here to Monroe. “It is such a prevalent issue in our area and nationally that just doesn’t get enough attention. That is something we need to change,” Coker said. Teri O’Neal, the coroner for Ouachita Parish, agrees with Coker’s desire to change the conversation around suicide by citing the numbers of people who have taken their lives in Ouachita Parish as 87 and counting since 2015. Due to these numbers and Coker’s desire

to enact change, Hope Walks Here had the largest turnout for any college walk in Louisiana. Even on a day that was as dreary and rainy as Saturday, hundreds of people showed up to sup- Coker port the cause. The walk had over 200 participants and raised around $15,000 for suicide prevention. The rain did not stop donations, people or even butterflies. The largest contributor to the event was the Kitty Degree School of Nursing who was awarded a plaque for their contributions to Hope Walks Here. One of the ways money was raised was through a series of raffles including a ULM merchandise basket and even community involvement with multiple local restaurants giving away gift cards. Hannah Logan, a ULM nursing student, attended the event to honor a close friend she recently loss to suicide. “He was the last person I ever imagined would take their life simply because of Logan the constant and abundant joy that radiated from him,” Logan said. Logan was happy Coker organized Hope Walks Here because she believed it could help people who are struggling with suicidal thoughts see they are not alone. “It can give others who are in a dark place in

FLYING FREE: At the conclusion of the Hope Walks Here suicide prevention walk, butterflies were released to honor those who lost their lives to suicide. According to the Ouachita Parish coroner, Teri O’Neal, 87 people have taken their life in Ouachita Parish since 2015.

their life a chance to see that people truly care and hurt when they lose someone in their life,” Logan said. Another student passionate about the event, Jewel Thompson, also wanted to make sure people knew they had support. “Growing up in a small town, everyone in your class gets to know each other pretty well and just last year, we had a classmate

commit suicide,” said Thompson, a senior nursing student. “Events like these help people who have been affected by suicide know that they are not alone and get the chance to celebrate their loved ones with others in the same situation,” Thompson said. contact Kailtin Maness at



April 15, 2019


SPRING photo by Miles Jordan

MISTER CONGENIALITY: Blake Stone was given the honor of being the second Mr. ULM Wendesney night. He wowed the crowd and won the crown with his stunts.

Stone crowned Mr. ULM 2019 by Ethan Dennis

Although heavily involved on campus, Blake Stone said he was extremely hesitant to participate in the Mr. ULM pageant, but “because of the great support I have from my friends and my [cheer] coach, I decided to turn in my application at the very last minute.” This decision paid off as the freshman radiologic technology major was crowned as the second Mr. ULM Wednesday night. Stone, or contestant number two, competed alongside four other contestants: Mason Musgrove, Hollis Walker, Phillip Vu-Nguyen and Bryce Lovelady. Contestant number three, Hollis Walker, actually competed in the inaugural pageant last year, so he wasted no time in having both his talent and spirit competition portions choreographed by the ULM Hawkline. “Competing for the second time, I knew this was not something I could do overnight. I reached out to two of my Hawkline friends for help, and they stuck with me from beginning to

end,” said Walker, a senior kinesiology major. His efforts paid off, however, as he won $150 and placed as the first runner-up. Although he did not get the title of Mr. ULM 2019, Walker said, “I will still support the title holder and Miss ULM. I will most definitely compete again next year to continue helping raise money for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.” Raising money for the Miss ULM platform, the Children’s Miracle Hospital Network, is the primary goal of the Mr. ULM pageant. Miss ULM 2018, Hagen Campbell, said she loves that the reigning Miss ULM is continuing the tradition she started. “I think it goes to a great cause, and it’s just a fun activity that students can be involved in on campus. I hope that the future of this pageant just gets bigger and better. I hope students continue to want to come, do this pageant and have fun,” Campbell said. contact Ethan Dennis at

photos by Pra

SPRING FESTIVITIES: (Top) A student enjoys free crawfish provided by the C Activities Board on Tuesday. Students were provide lunches throughout Spring Fever week by organizatio CAB, Student Government Association and Chi Alpha.

ajal Prasai

Campus ed free ons like

April 15, 2019



FEVER photo by Miles Jordan

LAUGHING OUT LOUD: Jay Pharaoh performs his famous stand up comedy act for ULM's Spring Fever Week in the coliseum last Tuesday. He was supposed to be accompanied by another comedian, Deray Davis, who got sick before the show.

photo by Miles Jordan

Jay Pharaoh fills coliseum with laughter by John Radcliffe

“I feel like a deadbeat dad. I haven’t seen my degree in years, and I’m still counting the days until I don’t have to pay for it anymore,” said AJ Foster, Jay Pharaoh’s opening act. Being that it was his first time performing in Louisiana, Foster said he was excited to open for Pharaoh. “I’m that annoying five second commercial that you can’t skip through when you’re trying to watch YouTube,” Foster said. ULM students were laughing and hollering for both Foster and Pharaoh as they made an appearance for Hawkchella Thursday Night. As a reoccurring performer for Saturday Night Live, Pharaoh is well known for his impersonations and inflections. “I’ve seen his impressions on SNL, but I’ve never seen his stand up before. I really enjoyed how inclusive he was, and he had the perfect amount of vulgarity for my taste in comedy,” said Allison Comeaux, a junior pre-nursing major. Pharoah was able to transform his voice in a variety of ways impersonating anyone from Barack Obama’s deep enunciated voice to Kevin Hart’s high-pitch, snappy demeanor.

“I’m always practicing my impersonations at some point in the day because if you stop drilling then you get rusty,” Pharoah said. Through Pharoah’s performance, anyone could see his constant practice of his impersonations. Moesha Wiley said she was very impressed with the show Pharoah put on. “Pharoah was a very well rounded comedian. He was very relatable because a lot of his material was aimed towards current events,” said Wiley. a junior secondary education major. Pharoah tied in many social figures that he identifies with. Many of them were rappers that give a voice for those who won’t speak up for themselves. “Don’t be afraid to be yourself,” said Pharoah. “Take risks and never be afraid to fail.” Many college students struggle to find themselves in this world. Both Pharoah and Foster gave insight into their stories throughout their life. Although many students were disappointed Deray Davis was a no show, Pharaoh carried the weight of the show making this year’s Spring Fever week a week to remember. contact John Radcliffe at



April 15, 2019



Warhawks walk to prevent sexual assault by Kaitlin Maness

photos by Amelia Wilkes

CLICK-CLACKING HEELS: ULM students, faculty and Monroe community members line up and march in support of sexual assault survivors. "I'm an Ally" t-shirts and teal boas were provided to make the participants look unified. Teal boas were chosen because teal is the color for Sexual Assault Awareness Month which is April.

I'M AN ALLY: Pujan Dahal, Sachin Shrestha and Sarthak Neupane rock "I'm an Ally" t-shirt as they happily strut in heels across the Bayou Desiard bridge at Walk a Mile in Her Shoes 2019. They were among the many men who donned heels to metaphorically walk in the shoes of women who have faced sexual assault.

In international student Sonya Maksimenkova’s home country, Ukraine, women rarely speak out against sexual violence. During her first year in the U.S. and at ULM, Maksimenkova joined Femhawks and learned about women’s ability to fight against issues like sexual assault. Now, she hopes to take her new-found idea of women’s rights to Ukraine with her. “I will try my best to spread the knowledge and information about how sexual assaults are prevented in the U.S. when I get home,” said Maksimenkova, a freshman computer science major. Maksimenkova was given the chance to stand up for women everywhere last Wednesday thanks to Femhawks. For the past four years, Femhawks has partnered with the Wellspring to host Walk a Mile in Her Shoes, a march practiced across the globe. The walk was designed to bring men and women together to advocate against sexual violence. Participants, both male and female, put on a pair of heels and wrapped teal boas around their necks before strutting down the bayou bridge and back to Bayou Park in honor of sexual violence victims. Although heels weren’t required, they were preferred. Femhawks secretary, Jessica Hawkins, said Walk a Mile in Her

Shoes is her favorite event hosted by the organization. “It’s my favorite because it brings attention to such crucial women’s issues,” said Hawkins, a senior psychology major. Melanie Clark loves connecting at this event. "I love getting to work with old friends and meet new ones each year," said Clark, the Wellspring’s sexual assault program coordinator and therapist. Junior psychology major Whitney Kwentoh said although Walk a Mile in Her Shoes is an important event, students shouldn’t stop their activism there. Kwentoh believes there is still work to do when it comes to sexual violence. “Remember that the fight against sexual assault and the systems in place that create and protect assaulters and abusers is ongoing, and we shouldn’t stop until the safety of marginalized people is ensured,” Kwentoh said. After walking back to Bayou Park, there was a candlelight vigil for victims. During the vigil, sexual assault survivors and supporters of sexual assault victims shared testimonies. Live music was also provided by Maksimenkova and Adam Blackburn. After performing “Never Give Up” by Sia, Maksimenkova felt that she was doing “the right thing.” “I was really nervous, but I haven’t felt this good in a long time,” Maksimenkova said. contact Kaitlin Maness at

CONSENT: Yolanda Bias(left), a sexual assault prevention specialist at the Wellspring, tells the Walk a Mile crowd about the Sexual Assault Awareness Month 2019 theme, "I Ask," which is about asking for consent. Bias also introduced Rayville High School football coach, Lent Bursey. Bursey talked about a program that has been implemented at Rayville and Neville High School that teaches the football teams about consent and sexual assault.

April 15, 2019




'Hunting Ground' documentary exposes campus sexual assault by Chelsea Terrell “No one asked for this. You do not ask for any of this. No woman asks for this. No man asks for this,” said Dovie Milstead, a senior history major. Milstead wasn’t talking about the Femhawks recent documentary screening of “The Hunting Ground,” but the film’s subject matter. “The Hunting Ground” is a film that exposes rape crimes on U.S. campuses, institutional cover-ups and the way the crimes affect students and their families. Milstead said the purpose of showing the film was “to bring awareness to students to not always be paranoid but on guard when you’re going out with friends.” Fellow Femhawk member, Taylor Beauchamp, said this is a discussion that we all need to be having. “This movie is just the start-a catalyst” said Beauchamp, a pre-pharmacy Milstead junior. There were also male audience members at the documentary screening. “To be honest, I came to watch the movie to get more information about the topic. I

don’t think I am informed enough, and I think this was a good opportunity to get the information I’m looking for,” said Jonathon Holland, a pre-occupational therapy major. The vice president of Femhawks, Princess Ayika, said the film is very important. “It helps us explain how this can happen to anyone because about around 20 percent of women who are enrolled in colleges are sexually assaulted while in college,” said Ayika, a biology junior. Ayika At the conclusion of the event, Milstead said people should speak about sexual crimes that have happened to them because it can mentally affect someone. “If this does happen to you, don’t be silent about it. Speak out about it, even if it’s just to a friend or your parents,” Milstead said. “The Hunting Ground” was a great opportunity to open student’s eyes about sexual assault which students are exposed to on college campuses across the country. Femhawks hosted the showing to go along with their 2019 Walk a Mile in Her Shoes awareness walk. contact Chelsea Terrell at

photo by Amelia Wilkes

MASS EDUCATION: Viewers at the Femhawks' documentary screening of "The Hunting Ground" learn how sexual assault has been dealt with across several college campuses in the U.S. Many of these stories saddened the audience members as university administrators often didn't support the sexual assault victims, but the agressors.

Alumni Spotlight

Clark releases children's book by Miles Jordan

Bees and children’s usual relationship is limited to just mutual fear but for ULM alumni Antoinette Clark the relationship is expanded on in her new children’s book "Kindness Matters: Sharing Bees." Clark, a 1995 graduate from Northeast Louisiana University's psychology program, combined a love and a dream in writing the book. Throughout her whole life, Clark has had a love for both children and writing, and she used these loves and her own ability to create the story. “I really wanted to write since I was a little girl. I didn’t know it was going to be this, but I am really glad and grateful to be doing this, especially in a day and time when we need it so photo by Miles Jordan much,” Clark said. PUBLISHED: Antoinette Clark, a 1995 graduate from ULM, formerly Northeast Mercedes Clark, Antoinette’s Lousiana University, stands holding her newest book, "Kindness Matters: Sharing daughter, believes the simple nature Bees." The book's purpose is to teach children that being kind and inclusive to one another is very important.

of children reading a book with children being kind to each other will make a world of difference. Antoinette said that we all need an acceptance of love, and she set out to do that in Sharing Bees. Antoinette along with illustrator Russel Wayne created a story full of human-headed bees with different hair textures, colors and styles as well as different races and hair colors. “One of the things I really wanted to focus on was inclusion- that we all are so much more alike than we are different,” Antoinette said. The book is based around a light-skinned, purple-haired bee named Sadie who exudes positivity throughout the book. Alexis Smith-Orange, assistant manager at Cinemark and the real life sister to Sadie, said the importance of the book is its ability to intrigue

kids to go outside. “I think that it’s great that [the book] is feeding into children’s minds and writing a book that inspires children and makes them ask questions about nature, bees and kindness,” Smith-Orange said. Antoinette’s desire was to do exactly those things even down to the ways bees interact with each other including having certain bees as guardians like they would be in the hive. The goal for Antoinette is to have more than just this book and expand on many of the characters over the rest of the series. “I’ll take the series as far as I think it needs to go and then we will branch off into something else. Each character in each book will have feature and will learn a different contact Miles Jordan at



April 15, 2019



Spring Fever week meets muddy end by Miles Jordan

Spring Fever opens with events on campus like a deluxe swing ride, but the closer to the end of every Spring Fever is Oozeball. Oozeball is an annual tradition put on by 31 Ambassadors that has been around for decades. It is simply a tournament of volleyball games played deep in mud. It’s a workout, it’s disgusting, but it’s an absolute blast. Junior political science major, Toni Corso, spent the first year of her college experience unable to participate, so Oozeball became a major bucket list item. “As a former student athlete, I never had the opportunity to participate, which sucked since I knew it was a huge tradition coming in,” Corso said. Corso joined a group of both former and current PREP staffers to participate in the event. The team named OIPS, standing for old, irrelevant PREP staffers, consisted of two current staffers, Corso and Danny Jones, as well as former staffers, Taylor Fadler, Cara Kuplesky, Joseph Walker and John Rankin. Like Corso, junior risk management and insurance major, Danny Jones, always wanted to play Oozeball. “The atmosphere, the students and the overall college

experience are why I decided to participate this year,” Jones said. 31 Ambassadors president Maurie Weldon credits the success of Oozeball to the university’s support. “The students and faculty have always helped us make this event a great success,” Weldon said. The support does not just come from the tradition itself, but also from students due to the fun and humor of it. “Everyone is diving out in the mud like crazy people and you can’t help but laugh and have a good time,” Corso said. For Jones, the mud and just the sheer nastiness of the whole experience makes him want to play again next year. “Everyone should experience the fun of getting down and dirty in those mud pits,” Jones said. The experience, however, did not end how OIPS would have wanted with a loss in the semi-finals to fellow corec team, sPIKEd drinks. “I definitely want to go out with a bang my senior year, who knows, maybe PREP will even win it all,” Corso said. contact Miles Jordan at

photo by Miles Jordan

MUDDY JOY: Members of Alphabet Soup celebrate a win during Ooozeball on Friday. Thirty nine teams participated in the annual tradition which is simply a volleyball game played deep in mud.

Greek Life

Donkey Basketball: Dunkin’ with donkeys by Ashlyn Dupree

photo by Amelia Wilkes

DONKEYS ON THE BAYOU: Monroe locals and ULM students got the chance to ride donkeys and play basketball thanks to Delta Sigma Phi. The fraternity held the event in the coliseum for the first time last Tuesday.

People playing basketball while riding donkeys is something anyone would want to see, especially if you are a seven-year-old girl. The only thing that would add to a sevenyear-old’s dream would be to ride one of the donkeys too. At Delta Sigma Phi’s Donkey Basketball tournament, that is just what seven-year-old twin sisters Stella and Sophia Doyon got the chance to do. The Doyon sisters said that Donkey Basketball was an event they would remember forever. They said their favorite part was getting to ride on the donkeys. Faye Doyon, the twins’ mother, said that this was a great event for the whole family to come to. Faye Doyon said she was glad she brought the twins to see it. President of Delta Sigma Phi, Bailey Landrum said that having fun

events open to the public can help break the bias ideas families might have of Greek organizations. “This event gives us an opportunity to communicate to the community that we are not the negative stereotypes popularly seen in mass media,” Landrum said. This wasn’t just fun for those who watched, but also donkey basketball riders like Sydney David and Jakob Yates. They had a “once in a lifetime experience,” according to David. “It was a super rush,” David said. “Riding on a donkey while playing basketball is something I’d never thought I’d get to do.” Jakob Yates, a junior risk management and insurance major, said that this was an unforgettable experience.But for Yates and David, at times, it wasn’t all fun and games. “My donkey Exlax had a passion for throwing me off, which he did four times. Still it was a fun time and

I loved seeing people laugh even though they were laughing at me and Exlax going round for round,” Yates said. At one point, David said she was scared. Her donkey knocked her off onto the ground and began to kick at her. Luckily, David was not hurt. While these unforeseen events did happen, Landrum said that overall Donkey Basketball was a huge success. “I believed Donkey Basketball would be a success because it was so original. I never thought in a million years that we would bring in live animals into the coliseum for an event,” Landrum said. According to Landrum, the money collected will be used to “help grow and prosper the fraternity” as well as “continually make better men on campus.” contact Ashlyn Dupree at


April 15, 2019



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67 The Big Apple, in addresses


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40 Alphabetically first of two Hawaiian maunas 41 Like some coll. courses 43 Gp. getting many returns in April 44 Regular’s bar order, with “the” 46 Nation that promotes its people’s economic and social prosperity 50 Malicious rumors 53 “Do __ others ... “ 54 Judge, e.g. 55 Like faces at a fireworks display 59 “Dream on!” 60 Meditation goal hinted at by this puzzle’s circles 62 Wander 63 Close-knit group 64 Fairway club 65 Didn’t dillydally 66 Act with excessive passion





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April 15, 2019


Women’s Basketball

Williams is worth hype


Warhawks fall to App. State, 3-2 by Tiffany Weiss

Nate Nasworthy The search for a new head women’s basketball coach is finally over. On Tuesday, Brooks Donald-Williams was announced as the new coach and all of Monroe tried to figure out if this was the right hire. Well, let me tell you-she’s the real deal. Williams has spent the last three seasons as an assistant coach at the University of Alabama. She worked primarily with perimeters and also assisted with recruiting and scouting. In three years, she led three players to 1,000 career points each. Prior to that, Williams was the head coach of McNeese State. She took a program that hadn’t produced a winning record in nearly 10 years and became the most winning coach in school history with 161 victories. Williams was the 2011 Southland Conference Coach of the Year, had six consecutive postseason appearances, four 20-win seasons in her last six years and won the Southland Conference Championship in 2011 and 2012. If anyone can turn around this program, it’s Williams. We haven’t had a winning record in the past eight seasons and interest in the program is just about dead. Sound familiar? If Williams was able to turn around McNeese and turn that program into a source of pride for the university, she should be able to do it for ULM too. It’s not like we’ll be dealing with a head coach that is cutting her teeth for the first time. We’ll have a proven winner that has had success in the SEC as an assistant and a proven winner as a head coach. The fact that Williams is such a good recruiter is something that really stands out to me. That is something that we have desperately needed for years. I’m really excited to have Williams on this campus. I have a feeling she’ll be able to take players like Arsula Clark and Jamie Means and turn them into superstars. Just watchwe’ll be conference champions in five years. contact Nate Nasworthy

Poor weather conditions traveled from Monroe to Boone, North Carolina causing rain and fog delays. The weekend was set for a Friday game and a double header on Saturday. However, the final game was delayed to Sunday when the game couldn’t be completed due to poor weather conditions. ULM took on Appalachian State and the Warhawks were given ample opportunities to defend the nest and their four-game winning streak. Unfortunately, the Mountaineers took down ULM, 3-2, on Friday and 10-8 on Saturday. “When games unfold and you start to get into it, you have to be able to shift gears. We gave too many at bats away, which was disappointing,” said Michael Federico, ULM head coach. The weekend produced some of the lowest stats for the 2019 season. The Warhawks only went 4-for-29 at the plate with 2 RBIs on Friday. However, pitcher Trey Jeans was the highlight of the night for ULM.

Jeans pitched eight innings and ended with seven strikeouts and only one earned run. Ryan Humeniuk was also able to slam a home run over the fence for one of the Warhawks’ scores. On Saturday, ULM took on Appalachian State in the first game of the double header. Senior infielder Joey Jordan got a hit early on in the game and tallied an RBI with a double down the line, bringing in Braedon Barrett for the score. ULM led until the sixth inning before the Mountaineers were able to take control and score five runs. Both teams scored five more runs in the eighth inning, but it wasn’t enough for the Warhawks. ULM is 15-20 on the season and 5-9 in the Sun Belt conference. ULM will come back home to take on Louisiana Tech on Tuesday. This will be the second matchup of the season with ULM winning the first game, 9-4. contact Tiffany Weiss at

photo by Miles Jordan

CALL YOUR SHOT: Senior Joey Jordan gets ready to bat for the Warhawks. ULM lost to Appalachian State on Friday, 3-2.


ULM falls to UTA in extra innings, 8-7 by Erika Guerrero

photo by Miles Jordan

LOOK AT ME GO: Freshman Korie Kreps gets on base during a game for ULM. ULM lost to UTA, 8-7.

ULM (7-32, 3-12 SBC) softball traveled across state lines into enemy territory this past weekend to take on UT-Arlington. However, the Mavericks weren’t the only enemy the Warhawks would face. The rain postponed the game on Saturday, but the two teams were able to battle it out on Friday. The Warhawks started the game off strong, but UTA swept in during extra innings to defeat ULM, 8-7. ULM started the game out strong with Jayden Mount as she slammed a home run over the left field fence with just one out remaining in the first inning. At the top of the third inning, Sydney McKay and Korie Kreps hit back-to-back singles with only one out in the inning. Mount then delivered a single and pushed McKay in from second to home. Kreps and Mount were then both able to score due to a throwing error by the Mavericks catch-

er. The error led to the Warhawks snagging a 4-0 lead over the Mavericks in the top of the third inning. The Warhawks continued to show out in the top of the fifth when the Mavericks’ error allowed McKay to reach base. Ana Hogan then hit a two-run single to rightcenter field and pushed McKay and Kreps in and raised the score to 6-1. The Warhawks remained in the lead until the bottom of the seventh. The Mavericks powered through by scoring six runs on four hits which evened the score at seven and caused the two teams to go into extra innings. The Warhawks fought hard at the top of the ninth as McKay began the inning with a line drive single up the middle. In the bottom of the ninth, the Mavericks pulled the winning run with a hit down the right-field line. contact Erika Guerrero at

April 15, 2019





photos by Miles Jordan

SURVEY THE FIELD: (Top) Senior quarterback Caleb Evans looks downfield to make a pass. (Right) Junior wide receiver Jonathan Hodoh makes a catch during the spring game on Friday at Malone Stadium against a defensive player. The spring game highlights offense and defense in a scrimmage against each other.

Excitement builds for new season by Nate Nasworthy

As we start to wind down on the spring semester, football is just now starting to gear up. The ULM spring game is a fitting way to end Spring Fever week. The game marks an end to the 15-day training camp that the team uses to get better for fall camp. The game saw back-and-forth action from both sides that showed the versatility of the offense and the defense. “That’s what you want to see. You want to take your chances that you’re pretty good on both sides. I’d rather have it that way,” said Matt Viator, ULM head coach.

Senior Caleb Evans returned at quarterback for the offense and went 14-of-19 on passes for 154 yards. The pressure was taken off of Evans by the emergence of junior running back Josh Johnson who zoomed off with a 19-yard run during the first drive and capped it off with a touchdown. “Josh made a good run today. I don’t know how he did it. He met two guys in the hole and made them both miss,” Evans said. Junior safety Austin Hawley set the tone for the defense with a big hit on Kayin White that forced a fumble that was recovered by Jabari Johnson.

“Coach emphasized all spring about how we didn’t get as many turnovers. We felt like that would have affected a lot of games, the ones that were close at least,” Hawley said. Sophomore kicker Jacob Meeks capped off the night with a 43-yard field goal as the game ended. The coaches will take the film and use it to develop a game plan for the upcoming season. With young receivers, a physical defensive line and an experienced quarterback, Viator will look to take the Sun Belt by storm. contact Nate Nasworthy at

Beach Volleyball

Track & Field

ULM finishes season strong at LSU

Severe weather cancels Warhawk Classic by Nate Nasworthy

by Nate Nasworthy

The season has finally come to an end for beach volleyball. The Warhawks traveled down to Baton Rouge for the Battle of the Bayou and walked away with three more wins while battling the rain at the same time. ULM quickly took down Spring Hill College, 5-0, before defeating New Orleans, 3-2. The Warhawks were at it early again the next day as they shut out Nicholls State, 5-0. Their only loss of the weekend came against LSU, 4-1. However, during the LSU game, sophomore Kayla Gallant and junior Gabby Love were able to win their match against the number four ranked team in the country. ULM ends the year 18-13 and the first winning season since 2017. The girls will switch gears and get ready for indoor volleyball in the fall lead by Russ Friedland and Sara Rishell. contact Nate Nasworthy at

photo by Miles Jordan

NOT HOLDING BACK: Junior Bailey Smith dives for the ball during a beach volleyball match. ULM defeated Nicholls, 5-0.

The Warhawk Classic was met with disappointment over the weekend as severe weather rained out the only home track meet of the season. It’s a heartbreaking end for seniors who weren’t able to partake in annual senior day activities. Track and field was able to complete the hammer throw event on Friday, but that was it. Freshmen Jakob Fudge, Ray Dixon and Jake Houston all set new personal records during the event. Fudge threw for 54.45m, which is his best ever by three feet. Senior Micah Dye and sophomore Hayden Holloway both threw seasonal bests. Both were just a meter off of their personal bests.

contact Nate Nasworthy at



April 15, 2019


Player Feature

Record-breaker McKay says goodbye by Nate Nasworthy and Miles Jordan

was priceless. It’s just a testament to her focusing on the process,” Fichtner said. Due to the magnitude of the achievement, Mike McKay was only able to get out two words before becoming emotional- “It’s awesome.” Now that Sydney’s time is winding down, it’s easy to reflect on the great times, but it’s hard to say goodbye. “It’s coming to an end now and I’m crushed,” Shelly McKay said. However, Sydney will go down as one of the hardest workers in ULM softball history. “As far as her work ethic goes, the hits speak for itself,” Fichtner said. Sydney, who graduates in May, has accepted a job with 49 Financial in Austin, Texas. “They really like to help people and make a difference in people’s lives. And that’s what really spoke to me and made me commit,” Sydney said. However, Sydney has bigger plans than just being a financial professional. “They said they had never had a woman CEO before. I’d like to be the first one,” Sydney said. All of Sydney’s success can be traced back to a batting cage built by a father. However, the cage no longer exists. “We used it during Christmas break and I knew that was going to be the last time we were in there together. But I just thought ‘Wow, this is really about to be over’,” Sydney said.

“Pippy, you get on, I get on, we run the bases all day long. Pippy, hit that ball!” Pip, better known as Sydney McKay, hit the ball with a focus and intensity that is matched by very few as she broke the all-time hit record for ULM softball this season. It all started with a little girl and a batting cage built by her father. Sydney’s father, Mike, built a batting cage for her brother because of baseball, but it quickly became her second home as well. “My mom would have to come get us because it was so late. There were no lights out there, but we’d turn the pool lights on and just stay out there,” Sydney said. Athletics came naturally for Sydney. But for a brief moment in time, there was a question whether softball would stick.

It’s coming to an end now and I’m crushed.” Shelly McKay, Sydney’s mother “I personally thought I was going to have a little ballerina. She took a couple of ballet classes and just wasn’t feeling it,” said Shelly McKay, Sydney’s mother. Sydney moved quickly up the ranks in public school and with travel ball. Her coaches had quite a lot to do with her success. However, when it came time to choose a school, Sydney was the only player on her travel ball team that was not committed anywhere. In a tournament in Oklahoma, Sydney played against another girl that would change her life. That girl’s father happened to be Corey Lyon, who, at the time, was head coach at Southern Arkansas University. “Sydney’s athleticism jumped out at me. I knew that she would be a dynamic offensive player and felt she had a lot of versatility on the defensive side,” Lyon said. Sydney would commit to SAU, but that wouldn’t last for long. Lyon accepted the head coaching job at ULM the summer before Sydney’s senior year of high school. Lyon instantly called Sydney and asked for her to make the trip to Monroe.

As far as her work ethic goes, the hits speak for itself.” Molly Fichtner, head coach photo by Miles Jordan

HITTING QUEEN : Senior Sydney McKay takes a swing at a softball after breaking the ULM all-time hits record with 249.

The rest is history. During her collegiate career, Sydney has been a consistent centerpiece for the team and a leader to lean on. “Sydney was injured in the first conference series last year. She played the entire season without missing an at bat and she never complained. She just went out there and did her job,” Lyon said.

In fact, it was a pretty serious injury. Sydney was hit by a pitch and suffered nerve damage. She has since Lyon undergone two surgeries and will face a third after this season. “I haven’t felt my hand in a year,”

Sydney said. However, this didn’t stop Sydney and on April 2, 2019, the outfielder broke the all-time hits record for ULM softball. Current head coach Molly Fichtner had the pleasure of breaking the news to Sydney. “I walked out to grab her elbow guard and told her ‘Congratulations.’ She had no idea. When I told her she broke the record, the look in her eye

And as the cage came down, it could only be signified as a new chapter in everyone’s life. “This is all I’ve known since I was five and it’s going to be gone just like that. But I’m excited for the future,” Sydney said. They say goodbyes are bittersweet. As Sydney puts it, “There’s not going to be anything sweet about it.” Sydney may say goodbye to the field, but she will never leave the Warhawks’ hearts. contact Nate Nasworthy at

Profile for The ULM Hawkeye

Full Issue 24 (April/15/2019)  

Full Issue 24 (April/15/2019)