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Sights & Sounds of Christmas Traditional holiday event begins this week

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4 3 Photos by Kristen Lefebvre, Staff Photographer

1) The Sights and Sounds of Christmas opened its gates for the 26th year Nov. 28 and includes carnival rides such as a ferris wheel and drop tower. Food and games are also available to attendees. 2) Mary Vigil holds her son Anthony as he throws a dart at balloons. 3) Isaiah Garcia, 9, turns ducks over for a chance to win prizes. 4) Carnival rides are a main attraction at the Sights and Sounds of Christmas. Attendees can choose from a carousel, ferris wheel and many others.

For more info or questions contact Tondra Moore: or visit

If you require an accommodation (information in alternate format, sign language interpreting) due to a disability, contact ( Tondra Moore, Accommodation requests should be made at least 72 hours in advance of the program start time to ensure availability.

2 | Thursday November 29, 2012 | The University Star | Trends

Kristen Lefebvre, Staff Photographer

Braxton Wise and Megan Pizana, San Marcos Baptist Academy students, play a carnival game Nov. 28 at the Sights and Sounds of Christmas festival in San Marcos Plaza Park. Carnival attendees had a chance to press their luck at games scattered across the park.

Token of San Marcos holiday season begins

By Paige Lambert Trends Reporter For 26 years, Sights and Sounds has marked the beginning of the Christmas season in San Marcos, offering an environment to set the mood for fun, laughter and warmth from being surrounded by loved ones. The festival is a four-night event, providing a carnival, Bethlehem scene and other holiday treats for the residents of San Marcos and Hays County. This long-standing tradition has not been without hiccups along the way, however. Last year it was closed for two nights because of rain. The weather not only cut the event short but also lessened the amount of funds that could be used for this year’s festivities. Brian Olson, president of Sights and Sounds, said this would be a regrouping year for the program. Even with the tight budget, Olson said more sponsorship from local businesses

and a chance at a new attendance record will help build it back up. “We’ve had to buckle down, but I think the attendance record will be even higher than last year,” Olson said. “It’ll be a combination of the usual crowd and others who were disappointed about missing out last year.” Along with the anticipated rise in admission revenue, Olson said almost 500 runners are signed up for the Sights and Sounds 5K. Because all the proceeds go to Sights and Sounds it will provide the financial boost the program is looking for. Even with the focused push to build up Sights and Sounds, it is also giving other programs and nonprofits a chance to fundraise for their own endeavors. The San Marcos Education Foundation runs the Christmas Tree Display, where librarians from each school are encouraged to decorate a tree as they please. Visitors are encouraged to vote on their favorite tree or school by placing tokens in the buckets nearby. The tokens are then turned into funds that are put into

the respective school’s library. “The trees are an open canvas. So, we get to see the thought and creativity of each school,” said San Marcos Mayor Daniel Guerrero, director of the education foundation. “Last year was our first to try this out. It brought in a lot of funds for the schools, and that was when we didn’t get to utilize all four nights.” Along with facilitating local organizations with fundraising opportunities, this event has become a lasting part of San Marcos culture. Families and students alike mingle to welcome in the holidays, each making new memories and recalling old ones. “It’s a nice place to take a date or just hang out with friends,” said Randall Ondrusek, accounting senior. “Either way you’ll have a lot of fun. The Bethlehem place is always fun with all the live animals, and you have got to hit up the hot chocolate.” Olson, who was involved long before becoming the head director, made plenty of memories while volunteering.

“I got stuck with the cotton candy booth, and I would be covered with the blue and pink fluff the whole night,” Olson said. “I’d go home and still find cotton candy behind me.” Guerrero remembered the original ice rink from when he was a boy. It was a linoleum square with Pam sprayed all over it. The “skaters” then slid around in their socks and sprayed more Pam to keep the slick ice feel. The four-night festival now has a carnival, live music and countless vendor and activity stations. While providing all the new experiences, Sights and Sounds has kept true to its traditions and family fun atmosphere. “After you get your ticket and tokens, you have to get a traditional, warm biscuit,” Guerrero said. “Then enjoy the music the schools put on, and maybe spin around the 75 foot tree. All of those traditions will help you see what Sights and Sounds has been for 26 years. Everything else is just the star on top of the tree.”

Local coffeehouse reinvents self, quiets down By Xander Peters Trends Reporter Since pulling the plug on Tantra’s days as a live venue, those behind the bar of the local coffeehouse have re-evaluated what the business can bring to the community and its members. Earlier this year, Adam Lilley, manager of Tantra Coffeehouse, had to make a decision regarding his career as a small business owner in San Marcos. He realized the java shop would not succeed in the long run as a music venue. “It was almost like (the music scene) overshadowed what this place is really here for, which made it hard to get our overall message across to the community,” Lilley said. “In the time that led up to dealing with the cops every weekend and issues with permits, it all just became an uphill battle.” Since returning to their core of food and beverages this past summer, the coffee shop’s revenue and clientele have slowly begun to improve, Lilley said. But the rocking scene most were used to at Tantra may not have the same aesthetic feel. Taylor Whitmore, barista, has worked at Tantra since September. In that time, Whitmore has noticed a whole new variety of diverse people begin to appear at his work, instead of just the regular Tantra music lovers.

“I used to hang out here before there wasn’t music,” he said. “It was always the same people every day of the week. Since the vibe has toned down a lot and there’s less craziness at night, it has all opened up a lot.” Other regulars agreed there was a change in the scenery, people-wise, since adopting the more traditional coffeehouse route. “As soon as the music stopped, they started doing the mini-pitcher special,” said Dylan Stowers, San Marcos local. “So, it kind of went from a music scene to a drinking scene.” Live music is still very important to those on both sides of the shop’s bar, even though the white tent that housed the weekend funk is no longer adjacent to the south wall of the shop. A songwriter’s showcase will take place Friday at the coffeehouse, featuring Grace Park & the Deer, Jason Weems and Jack Wilson. Tantra is planning a spring concert series for this next semester, the owner said. As time goes on, Lilley hopes to bring back music a little at a time to his local business. “It’s great because we have such a pool of talent in this town,” Lilley said. “There will be a smaller crowd, but it’ll be more intimate with an earthy vibe. There’s a real itch for that kind of show. We have a Madelynne Scales, Staff Photograher great community here so we’re going to Tantra Coffeehouse continues to host its popular bluegrass night every Wednesday despite cutting continue investing in each other.” live music earlier this year.

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The University Star | Thursday November 29, 2012 | 3


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Stock Report WAC Football

Star File Photo

Texas State will take the field for the last time this season to battle it out with New Mexico State. The Bobcats have a record of 3-8 after last week’s loss to UTSA.

Bobcats look to end losing streak for seniors By Jordan Brewer Assistant Sports Editor

In what has been a step forward for the Texas State football program, the first and last season in the WAC will be critiqued after the season finale this Saturday. The Bobcats (3-8) have lost five games in a row with the deficits ranging from seven to 31 points. A win against New Mexico State University would send the seniors off with a refreshing memory of their last game at Bobcat Stadium. A loss could have lingering effects of a six-game skid starting the 2013 season in their new home, the Sun Belt conference. “We have to play better on defense,” Coach Dennis Franchione said. “We gave up 300 yards rushing to UTSA, 200 yards passing. We just have to get better on that side of the ball. We have to find a way to make some stops.” The Aggies currently hold a 10 game losing streak, dating back to the first week of September when they lost to Ohio University 51-24. Their only victory of the season came in August when they defeated Sacramento State University 49-19. New Mexico State has dropped every conference game, with the closest deficit coming against the University of Idaho, 26-18. “This is our bowl game, our championship,” said Aggies coach DeWayne Walker. “I’m going to rev it up this week for our seniors. We’re going to have some fun, but at the same time, we want to win and this is the last shot we get.”

Star File Photo

Shaun Rutherford, senior quarterback, will play his last game with Texas State Dec. 1 against New Mexico State at Bobcat Stadium.

The Aggies are averaging 17.2 points per game while giving up 37 points per game. They have been outscored 407 to 196 this season. One stat the Bobcats could benefit from is the unsuccessful play of the Aggies in the third quarter this season, as opponents have outscored them 125-31. The same quarter has plagued the Bobcats in 2013, being shut out five times in the third. Coach Walker and the Aggies rank lower than 100th in nine statistical categories. They are 119th in turnover margin, -14; 120th in scoring offense, 17.8 points a game; 120th in rushing offense, 90.9 yards; and 113th in total defense, 471.5 yards. Their offense is manned by sophomore quarterback Andrew Manley, who has completed 53.8 percent of his passes for 2,516 yards. Manley has tossed 16 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. His main target is sophomore receiver Austin Franklin, who has caught 69 passes for over 1,000 yards and nine touchdowns. Germi Morrison is a key running back with 644 yards on 140 attempts. Morrison has one touchdown in 2013 but carries a 4.6 average per rush. Tiger Powell is next with 198 yards on 62 carries, leading all rushers with five touchdowns on the season. Senior quarterback Shaun Rutherford will be playing his final game in maroon and gold, after completing his most impressive passing game of the season. Rutherford had 324 yards and two touchdowns on 31 of 42 passing in the loss to the University of TexasSan Antonio. He will be facing a defense that has given up over 270 yards per game. On the flip side, senior running back Marcus Curry is coming off of a 19-yard performance against UTSA. Curry is the Bobcats’ leading rusher with nearly 600 yards on 106 attempts, giving him a 6.7 average. Curry will also be playing his final game as a Bobcat against the Aggies. “(Last week) was a real gut check for us,” Franchione said. “I think we are fortunate that we have another game, and we are fortunate we get to go home and play and try and send our seniors out the right way. We get a chance to play again.” The Aggies are coming off a 50-14 drubbing at the hands of Brigham Young University last week. The Aggies surrendered 520 yards of offense while only mustering 187 yards. BYU had 384 yards passing and got to Manley five times. The Aggies have an experienced defense with zero underclassmen holding starting spots. Safety Davis Cazares leads the team in tackles with 110. Linebacker Trashaun Nixon is second among Aggie defenders with 88 tackles, 8.5 of those behind the line of scrimmage. Nixon is second on the team in sacks with two, while rush specialist Donte Savage has three. The secondary for the Aggies has produced three interceptions this season, two of them coming from free safety George Callender. Twitter: @jbrewer32

Stock up: Utah State

The Aggies won the 2012 WAC Championship with a 45-9 win over Idaho last weekend. Utah State was only a few plays away from having an undefeated season, with its only losses coming at Wisconsin, 16-14, and 6-3 at BYU. Wisconsin is playing in the Big Ten Championship Game this weekend, and the Cougars finished their year at 7-5 and will make a bowl appearance. Their 10 victories this season were the school’s highest win total in Utah State history.

Stock up: San Jose State

The San Jose State Spartans finished 10-2, despite having the worst average attendance in the WAC with 10,400. This finish was their best record since 1987 when they won 10 games. The Spartans, originally picked third behind Utah State and Louisiana Tech, finished ahead of the Bulldogs in the final standings. San Jose State’s David Fales finished third in the nation with a 170.9 quarterback rating.

Stock up: UTSA

The Roadrunners were picked to finish last by both WAC Media and coaches. However, the team finished its first FBS season 8-4 and fourth in the WAC after being blown out by the top three WAC schools and Rice. The team ended up defeating Idaho and Texas State in the final two weeks of its season. Those wins were two of their three against FBS opponents. UTSA did have one of the easiest schedules in the FBS, going 4-0 against non-FBS opponents. It had an average attendance of 29,226, the highest in the WAC.

Stock down: Louisiana Tech

A lack of any defense finally caught up with the Bulldogs, and two straight losses sent Louisiana Tech spiraling to a 9-3 record to end the year. The Bulldogs, once ranked in the top 25 Associated Press poll, ended up allowing 48 or more points five times this year, including in their 62-55 victory over Texas State in San Marcos. Louisiana Tech lost its last two games by 100-84 combined. Report compiled by Cameron Irvine, Sports Editor Twitter: @txstcamirvine

4 | Thursday November 29, 2012 | The University Star | Sports


Basketball’s first three weeks

NEXT BOBACT GAME Texas State (3-8)


Average points per game for men’s basketball through its first six matches, currently the highest in the WAC. However, the Bobcats have given up the most points in the conference so far this season, 73.3 ppg.

The women’s basketball team currently has three of the top 11 scorers in the WAC, with senior guard Diamond Ford leading the way with 23.0 ppg, second in the conference. Other top scorers include junior forward Ashley Ezeh and junior guard Jasmine Baugus.

3 80.5


Average points per game for women’s basketball through its first five matches, which leads the WAC. Like the men, the women give up points: eighth most in the conference, 78.0 ppg.


The Bobcats have lost five straight since starting 3-3 in the season. New Mexico State has lost 10 straight and has not beaten an FBS opponent this season. The Aggies have lost 16 straight WAC games on the road but are the least penalized team in the conference. Texas State’s silver lining is that it is fourth in the nation in punt returns, averaging 16.7 yards. However, its returner, Andy Erickson, is out with an injury and will not play in the season finale. Texas State’s defense now ranks 122nd, dead last in the FBS, and is trailing in the nation in sacks with six. Stanford has 53 sacks, leading the nation. Saturday December 1, 3:00 p.m.



Average attendance for women’s basketball, which ranks second in the WAC behind Louisiana Tech’s 2,130 mean. The Bobcats’ efficiency could be the reason fans are showing up. Texas State is best in the conference in assist-turnover ratio. It is also best conference-wise in turnover margin, blocked shots, average defensive rebounding and three-point defense and offense.


The Aggies will play in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl on the blue turf in Boise, Idaho, following their WAC title, clinched last week. Utah State could face Bowling Green (8-4), Ball State (9-3) or Toledo (9-3). Saturday December 15, 3:30 p.m., ESPN


Despite allowing 73.3 ppg, men’s basketball has not hurt itself in the turnover department. Texas State holds a 4.67 advantage in turnover differential, second in the WAC behind Louisiana Tech. The Bobcats are second in free-throw percentage, 73.3 percent, trailing Denver in that category.

New Mexico State (1-10)

San Jose State (10-2)


San Jose State will take on Ohio in the Military Bowl, as projected by Phil Steele’s College Football, pro and high school preview magazines. Thursday, December 27, 3:00 p.m., ESPN Louisiana Tech (9-3)


Louisiana Tech will take on Louisiana-Monroe in the Advocare 100 Independence Bowl, as projected by Phil Steele’s College Football, pro and high school preview magazines. Friday December 28, 2:00 p.m., ESPN

Bobcat News and Notes More realignment

Texas State’s future conference has once again started getting picked apart. The Sun Belt had built up its conference to 10 members in preparation for 2013. However, it has lost Florida Atlantic University and Middle Tennessee State University to Conference USA starting with the 2014 season, according to ESPN’s website. The change means the Sun Belt, as of this news release, will be a 10-team conference only one year before dropping to eight schools. Conference USA, the new home for the University of TexasSan Antonio in 2013, will have 14 mem-

bers by 2014, and 15 the following year. In another realignment, the University of Louisville will move from the Big East to the Atlantic Coast Conference in time for the 2014 season. Tulane University and East Carolina University will leave Conference USA in 2014 to join the Big East. This was in response to the Big East losing Louisville and Rutgers University to the Atlantic Coast Conference this past week.

Strength in numbers

Texas State football played the 69th toughest schedule in the country in

their first WAC season, according to the Jeff Sagarin ratings based on strength of schedule rankings. The Bobcats played the second toughest schedule among non-BCS automatic qualifying conferences, behind only the Big East’s Syracuse University. UTSA, which finished its first WAC season 8-4, had the 125th toughest schedule in the country, and the fifth easiest schedule in the FBS.

Signing on as Bobcats

Women’s basketball and volleyball had more players sign national letters of intent to begin play in 2013 at Texas

State. The basketball program will bring in Carrie Kirchner, Correy Moyer and Kaitlin Walla. Premier Basketball Report ranked Kirchner as the ninth best center in Texas. Moyer is a three-star recruit and ranked 40th at her position in the country, according to Hoopgurlz. Volleyball looks to add Jocelyn Hillyer, Alexandra Hubicsak and Kelsey Weynand. Hillyer is a three-time all-district first team selection from Somerset High School. Report compiled by Cameron Irvine, Sports Editor Twitter: @txstcamirvinev

Sports | The University Star | Thursday November 29, 2012 | 5


Texas State faces ‘big, physical, inside-out team’

By Samuel Rubbelke Sports Reporter Last weekend sparked different results for the University of Utah and Texas State, who play Friday at Strahan Coliseum. The Utes enjoyed a three-win feast at home for their Utah Thanksgiving Tournament while the Bobcats struggled at the Great Alaska Shootout with a 1-2 record. The Utes come to San Marcos with a 5-1 record, their only blemish coming in the form of a 74-71 loss to Sacramento State. The Utes are led by a balanced attack of four players who average double figures in scoring. Sophomore center Dallin Bachynski leads the team in scoring and rebounding, averaging 13.2 points per game and nine boards. Guard Jarred DuBois contributes 12 ppg, freshman forward Jordan Loveridge supplies 11.8 points and Glen Dean adds 11.4 to the mix. Utah utilizes its bigs to establish an inside out game, with ball screens then roll and replace for the guards. Typically ball screen offenses are designed to loosen up space for the guards, but Utah operates more toward its duo of seven footers. The Utes average 41 rebounds per game and hold a 10.5 margin over their opponents. The Bobcats have only one player who is 6 feet 10 inches or taller. “We’re constantly being challenged by

size,” said Coach Doug Davalos. “They’re a very big, physical, inside-out team, and they out-rebound their opponents. It’s been our Achilles’ heel, not being able to finish defensive possessions. We just have to take to heart to show up on the rebounding.” Utah is coming off three consecutive double-digit victories at home. The team won its opening tournament game over Idaho State 57-46, then rolled on against Central Michigan 67-51 and finished with a 66-54 victory against Wright State. In the team’s most recent victory over Wright State, freshman Jordan Loveridge marked a career high with 22 points along with grabbing nine rebounds. Dallin Bachynski and Jarred DuBois accompanied Loveridge in the double figure club to finalize the sweep of their hosted tournament. Bachynski finished with 16, while DuBois filled the stat sheet with 12 points, dishing out a career high seven assists and hauling in six rebounds. Points can be important, but efficiency is the key to success in basketball, and through five games Utah has shot 49.4 percent from the field. “We have to establish a weakness for us, which has been defending points in the paint,” Davalos said. “We have to make sure that we don’t give up second shots. Make sure we do a good job of post defense with ball pressure on the perimeter, so they don’t get comfortable in the paint where the highest percent shots are made.” In his second year of coaching the Utes, Larry Krystkowiak’s team is outscoring its opponent by a margin of 18.6 points per game. The Utes have limited the opposition to 54.4 ppg during that stretch. “The main thing is execution,” said senior forward Matt Staff. “We really need to get down to the nuts and bolts and execute our offense. We’re scoring alright, but we really need to get everyone involved and run the offense the way we know how to run it.” The Bobcats are averaging 75.8 points per a game this season. In Texas State’s final game at the Great Alaska Shootout, the Bobcats distributed the ball evenly with 19 assists against University of California—Riverside. Texas State had four players score in double figures, including junior transfer Corey Stern, who led the Bobcats by scoring a career high 17 points. Staff added 16, junior forward Reid Koenen Star File Photo supplied 12 and senior

Star File Photo

Texas State will take on University of Utah Nov. 30 at Strahan Coliseum. The Bobcats have a 3-3 record. guard Vonn Jones posted 10 points and seven assists. Utah has yet to go on the road and be challenged or face the adversity of a grindit-out game, apart from the loss to Sacramento State, a 74-71 defeat dating back to Nov. 16. Utah’s first five games have all been in the luxury of its own arena. No longer being able to enjoy the comfort of home, the Utes will book their first traveling arrangements and go on a

mini Lone Star State tour. Before heading to San Marcos, Utah will play Nov. 28 against Coach Larry Brown and the SMU Mustangs. Texas State will look to match the series 1-1 and avenge the 74-59 loss back in 2005 with its upcoming Pac-12 opponent. Friday will mark the first time Utah plays at Texas State. Twitter: @SamuelRubbelke


Bobcat rebounding issues lead to loss to Cowgirls By Odus Evbagharu Sports Reporter Texas State gave up 30 offensive boards and was out-rebounded for the fourth time in five games this year in a 90-55 defeat at the hands of No.17 Oklahoma State University Wednesday night. “Rebounding is just something that we are just going to have to do to compete and win games, period,” said Coach Zenarae Antoine after her team was outrebounded 67-34. “We have to make up for our lack of size and depth in a particular position of the four spot. It’s obvious that teams are going to try to figure out where we’re weak at and take advantage of that.” The women raced out to an early lead with freshman forward Erin Peoples outscoring the Cowgirls 8-2 in the first four minutes of the game. Peoples would end the game with 16 points, six rebounds, a block and a steal. The Bobcats maintained a lead of 25-20 before the Cowgirls went on an 18-6 run to take the 38-31 lead into halftime. Texas State came out of halftime slowly cutting away at the lead to make the contest 46-40, the smallest score gap for the remainder of the game. Oklahoma State shot the next eight to grab a 14-point lead in the midst of outscoring the Bobcats 5224 in the second half. “When we get on the road, it’s just really tough,” Antoine said. “It’s tough in Big 12 country. They have a lot of fans. Our ability to play and stay poised is going to be important going forward.” Senior guard and the second-leading scorer in the WAC, Diamond Ford, was held to just 1-14 shooting in 35 minutes of action. She scored five points, 18 off her season average. Junior forward Ashley Ezeh contributed 16 while junior guard Jasmine Baugus added 11 points. Coming into Wednesday night’s contest, Oklahoma State was the No. 1 scoring team in the nation, averaging 90 points a game. The Cowgirls shot 44 percent

from the field in the second half and scored 5-13 in the game from beyond the arc in rout of the Bobcats. Antoine attributed the Cowgirls’ scoring to a lack of rebounding and poor defensive play. “Honestly, rebounding is what did it for us,” Antoine said. “Rebounding, rebounding and rebounding. In the way we play, you have got to crash the boards. Anytime you give up 30 offensive boards, that’s the name of the game. We just have to rebound better.” The team made 11 field goals and jumped out to an early 16-6 lead in the first half.

However, Texas State went cold in the second half going 7-32 from the field. The women shot less than 30 percent as they went 18-61 from the field for the contest. The Bobcats only made 12-22 free throws for the night, 54 percent. “It was tough, and I thought we got some good shots, to be honest,” Antoine said. “You just have to adjust on the defensive end to win games. You get stops, and you get easier opportunities to get the rebound and get going, but I got to give some credit

to Oklahoma State. They are 17th in the country, and there is a reason why they have that number in front of their name. They did something as well that kind of stifled us with the way were able to play.” The Bobcats have not beaten a Big 12 opponent on the road in seven years with the loss to the Cowgirls. Texas State falls to 3-2 for the season and heads to El Paso to take on the Miners on Dec. 1 at 8 p.m.


Twitter: @odus_Outputs

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11 29 2012 Section B  
11 29 2012 Section B