Hot Take on Harden: He Won’t Win

By Sebastian Lewis

James Harden will not win a championship with his current style of play.

James has been playing a give me the ball and get out of the way style. While it is winning in the regular season and keeping his team’s head above water while they are suffering from injuries it will not work in the playoffs.

Harden’s historic run did recently come to an end after his game against the Atlanta Hawks. In the span of thirty two straight games Harden was scoring at least thirty points. There is only one other player that has done that in more consecutive games. It was Wilt Chamberlain who did it in 65 straight games.

But back to how James can’t win the way he is playing. I feel as though his best chance to win was last year when they had a 3-2 series lead over the Warriors but Chris Paul got hurt and the Rockets dropped two straight games and lost the series.

The only other way he could have won a championship is if he had stayed in Oklahoma city for another year or two after they lost to the heat in the finals but the thunder traded him in the offseason.

But let’s take a closer look at his style of play. At one point he scored 298 straight unassisted points. That means either he brings the ball up or whoever does bring it up passes it to him and he takes his man off the dribble usually ending in a step back three pointer.

He really only passes when he absolutely has to. He still is averaging 7.6 assists per game but that is down from his previous years were he was more of a facilitator.

As of right he has played 56 games in a 82 game long regular season and he is only 88 shot attempts away from the same amount he took last season. He is averaging about 4 more shot attempts this year and his points per game are up by about 6 points right now but his assist did slightly decline with the way he is playing right now.

I am going to say it one more time even though his isolation type of play is winning games right now in the regular season it WILL NOT work in the playoffs when  a team can game plan for you during seven game series. He will have to change something in the way he plays when the playoffs come around.

He is making a hell of a case for MVP because the Rockets would not be the fifth seed right now of it were not for him, but that man Giannis has his team as the number one seed in the east right now but that is a different argument for a different day.

Shenandoah Tennis 2019 Preview

By Tyler Derrington

Last year, SU’s Men’s Tennis team finished with a 7 – 9 record, one of the better seasons in program history. While at first glance a losing record may not seem great, it did mark only the second time that the team made it to conference play, where they lost to Washington & Lee in the ODAC semifinals.


The 2018 squad also saw two players Darian Diaz and Matt Hwang be selected for the All-ODAC team.


Going into 2019 season Head Coach Hubbard is very optimistic and excited for what the future holds for the men’s tennis team.


Due to a diminished roster, this year can lead the Hornets to be ranked in the bottom third in the ODAC. Thus, making it to the conference playoffs just this past season.


Hubbard didn’t seem to worry about potentially being ranked in the bottom of the ODAC, going into the season with 7 players – leading Shenandoah to be one of the smallest teams in the ODAC. “Our goal is to win and represent Shenandoah in the conference play, but to also keep a positive attitude and stay true to themselves and accomplish their team goals off the courts as well as on the court” said Hubbard.


Most people don’t know Hubbard is going into his 9th season at Shenandoah as the head coach for both men and women tennis teams. He has over 30 years of tennis coaching experience and multiple coaching certificates. Prior to coaching at Shenandoah coach Hubbard was the head coach at Liberty University – a Division 1 (D1) organization.


With all his coaching experience and the experience of the players that are returning it’ll be hard to count out the Hornets.


What most people don’t know Is that coach Hubbard true love wasn’t always tennis, it was actually lacrosse. Hubbard attended and played D1 lacrosse at Maryland University where he won a national championship.


Coach Hubbard’s father is the one who actually introduced and influenced the game of tennis to him, and even then, tennis was only a past time. It wasn’t until Hubbard was out of school and at the beginning of his coaching career is when tennis became a big part of his life. As a college coach you have to be involved in a university in other ways other than coaching, so coach Hubbard turn to teach tennis and the story begins.

Big Risks Equal Big Rewards For International Students

By Chris Oates

Shenandoah University students call many different places home. Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia, and various parts of Virginia are the hotspots for incoming freshmen and transfers.

While most of us can make a simple 2 hour drive back home over a long weekend or for christmas break, other students aren’t so lucky.


According to Lora Steiner, The International Student Advisor for the University, says that little over 80 international students makeup little over 3,800 total student body here at Shenandoah University.

Students from abroad come to pursue opportunities that could change their lives in a new home. Whether it is a pursuit of education and to graduate with a degree, athletics, or even just a change in scenery.


“Many of our students struggle with adapting to slang and they way we speak… our tone of voice coming from us in a sarcastic and funny way to our friends is common but to a student from another country some who aren’t accustomed to it may get offended” said Steiner. “Americans tend to value really direct communication, and we don’t ‘sugarcoat’ a lot of things”.


She goes onto say that the similar ways American students hear about Shenandoah is how international students hear about it as well. “It is shocking. Most international students hear about Shenandoah through various independent research about a program that we offer, word of mouth by somebody who formerly went here… ultimately being close to D.C is a huge part of it”.


While some abroad students research Shenandoah University about their programs. Some of our programs tend to look for ‘diamonds in the rough’ from other countries.

Harry Wall, a freshman from Wellington, New Zealand, was given an opportunity to not only come to Shenandoah University to get an education, but also was recruited to play on our Men’s Basketball team.

“I took a big risk,” said Wall. He also said he had some doubts about living so far from home. When asked about his doubts to fit in at Shenandoah. “I wanted to find out what I liked and didn’t like about it, and if I could really live so far away from home”. Wall’s flight from Auckland International Airport to Dulles Airport in Virginia was almost 22 hours.

“Many people have helped me fit right in. A lot of faculty from the International Program from the University invited me along with other kids that came from other countries” said Wall. “I met a lot of people from my FYS class and went to dinner with them…. it got me closer with people on campus.”


Wall credits his teammates and coaches when asked about how basketball has helped him with fitting into American culture. “Coach Walsh and Coach Peters have been great to me with their understanding… and have helped me with a lot of stuff since I came here.”


Wall understands that his life as a international student will always be important to him. “I miss my family, but I want to pursue things in life and I know it will be difficult, but I can do it” said Wall. “Of course at the beginning of the year, so many people asked me about my accent and how New Zealand is and it was a bit annoying, but now that we’re in the second semester they know me as Harry Wall, Shenandoah student and not just the kid from New Zealand”

Photo credits to SU Hornets

eSports Experiences Success in First Year

By Andrew Coffman

In the inaugural season of E-Sports at Shenandoah University expectations have been blown out of the water.


“My expectations for the year were to have 12-15 students and just to complete at 1 or 2 games at a national or regional competition,” said Dr. Joey Gawrysiak, the founder and leader of both the E-Sport major and team at Shenandoah University.


The team now bolsters a varsity roster of over 35 students who compete on 3 different games at the national level every week.


Even with the program being new, they’ve seen success early. “We’re number 1 right now in the region in Overwatch, we’re in the top 50% in League of Legends, and our Rocket League team is competing against professional teams,” said Gawrysiak.


With the early success and growth have come some growing pains. As the team grows, a bigger space to compete and more coaches will be needed. But Gawrysiak feels these are “good” problems to have.


Despite the quick expansion, the E-Sports team is always looking for more students to add to their growing team. “If the students want to do it, then I want to give them a place to do this,” Gawrysiak said. “That’s the point of having this organization.”


If you have interest in joining the E-Sports team contact Dr. Gawrysiak at jgawrysi@su.eduor visit the E-Sports lab in the basement of the Health and Life Sciences Building.

SU Men’s Soccer Coach Relieved of Duties

By Elise O’Neill-Eckman


The Shenandoah University Men’s Soccer Team recently completed their best season since 2007, winning six games, three of which were ODAC victories.

However, on Friday, October 26th, Shenandoah University director of Intercollegiate Athletics Bridget Lyons, Ph.D. announced, that Matt Smith has been relieved of his duties as head men’s soccer coach.

The University has given no official reason for Smith’s dismissal. Their formal statement is:

“We have made great strides in our men’s soccer program in the past two years,” Dr. Lyons said. “We are going to conduct a national search for a new coach that can continue to advance the program and is committed to the Division III ideal.”

The Buzz reached out to Scott Musa, Assistant AD/Athletic Communications Director of Shenandoah University but did not receive further comment on the matter.

We will continue updating the story if and when more information gets released about the reasons behind Smith’s dismissal.


Featured image courtesy of Shenandoah University Athletics.


Getting to Know: Dr. Bridget Lyons, The Other New Addition to the SU Athletic Department

BY: Jacob Morgan

The Wilkins Athletic Center isn’t the only new addition to the Shenandoah University athletic department. This semester, SU has also welcomed a new Athletic Director, Dr. Bridget Lyons.
Dr. Lyons earned her masters and Ph.D. at VCU. A collegiate athlete herself, she played three different sports, and pursued sports journalism before coaching at the high school level.
Dr. Lyons previously worked at Barry University, a division two school in Miami, Florida, where she served as the Senior Associate Director of Athletics. When asked what made her come to Shenandoah, Dr. Lyons said that it was her aspiration to be an athletic director, and that our mission and vision here are very appealing to her.
Dr. Lyons hopes for the future are big. She wants to continue overseeing the use of the new athletic and events center, improve our facilities and help give back to the community. Another goal is being able to have “consistent contenders for conference champions” and the opportunities to excel on and off the field. The plans she has set for our new athletic center include getting all the phases done, and getting all of the coaches and staff settled in. Plans for a new weight room are being set in motion as well as hopes for building a baseball/softball complex.
Visit to learn more about Dr. Lyons or follow the link below:
Photo Courtesy:

Winchester Welcomes Home Walsh

BY: Bethany Melvin

Adam Walsh, Winchester native and James Wood High School graduate, has come back to his roots to coach his hometown college basketball team. Before deciding to come home, Walsh coached at Centenary College of Louisiana for seven years.

“The chance that we have as a family and the chance that we have with the basketball program to not only impact and influence campus but also impact and influence the community, and I think being from here made this a very special opportunity for me.”

Walsh’s expectations for not only himself but his team intertwine the basketball team together, making a stronger impact within the Shenandoah community.

“I think there’s a lot sport can do. The guys that I coach and the guys that I will be recruiting to come here and be a part of the student body, and I think that we have to recruit the right people, and we have to have people that will be good quality parts of the Shenandoah family.”

Timing could not have been more perfect. The Walsh family just had their first child, “we were coming home with our first grandchild for my parents.” When the text message came through to Walsh’s phone notifying him of the job opening at Shenandoah, while sitting in the waiting room for their first doctor’s appointment, Walsh and his wife felt called to come home. From there, the rest is history, “everything just kind of fell in place and that it made sense for us to come home from afar.”

The transition is definitely a drastic one, as Louisiana is much different than Virginia. Walsh describes the culture of Louisiana as very different, family oriented, and everybody being a friend.

“It’s a unique environment, and we do miss it, but this is a unique opportunity for us to be where I grew up.”

Although a lot of relationships are being left behind, Walsh looks forward to
reconnecting in his hometown.

It is obvious Walsh is not only a family man, but an incredibly strong leader and influence in the lives of those he encounters, which is what makes him such a successful coach.

“I feel like, and I always have felt like I was called to coach basketball. If in your life you have the ability to merge your purpose with your passion, and those things can combine in your career, you’re going to love what you do.”

Walsh has had many people in his life lead him to where he is now, and he hopes to be one of those mentors in the lives of his players. Looking back at those who have shaped him into the man he is today, Walsh focuses on his
middle school years. Walsh does not come from an athletic family, but played basketball in middle school, managed in high school, as well as his college years at High Point University.

“I think, there’s no think, I know that basketball is where I’m supposed to be right now, but it’s not just basketball. It’s the calling of shepherding and helping to raise young men and young people through sport.”

Walsh believes God had him in the right place to learn from the right people and
experiences to be in the position he’s in today of having a love and passion for what he does.

“I hope that my family, myself, and my staff are people and examples that our players can look up to.”

Shenandoah University welcomes Adam Walsh, and his family, to the Shenandoah community.

For scores, schedules, and more information on Shenandoah’s men’s basketball team, visit

Photo Credits: Shenandoah Athletics

Hornet Buzz Heard in Wilkins Center

By: Monica Baranko

Students, faculty, and Winchester locals all gathered on a cold Wednesday night to
celebrate the opening of the new James R. Wilkins, Jr. Athletics and Events Center at
Shenandoah University.

Cheerleader, Brittany Tran shows her Hornet pride as she flies on the gym’s opening night.

To open the event, President Tracy Fitzsimmons and James R. Wilkins Jr.’s son,
Richie Wilkins, spoke about the facility. There was even more chatter coming from
the crowd.

“This place is incredible,” said SU’s Women’s Golf Captain, Emily Conrad who was in

“This building isn’t just going to benefit the basketball teams, volleyball team, or the
track teams, it’s going to benefit the university and Winchester as a whole.”

Shenandoah’s step-team performing at half-time of the men’s basketball game.

With more than 1,200 people in attendance, the 77,000-sq.- ft building was packed
with Hornet pride.

SU’s and Randolph-Macon’s mens basketball teams clap for Richie Wilkins after his speech.

The Shenandoah Men’s basketball team took a 90-56 loss to Randolph-Macon. After
being up by four in the first half, the SU Hornets dropped the ball with 25 turnovers
to the Randolph-Macon’s eight.

In the second game of the night, the Hornet Women’s basketball team crushed
Bridgewater 67-62. It was an all around special night for the Hornet women.

Senior captain Kirstyn Arcata was honored at half time for being the 19th woman in
SUWB history to achieve 1,000 points during her time at Shenandoah.

The new building will also host concerts and other university and community events
in addition to athletic events.

Shenandoah starters anxiously waiting for their name to be called.

Hornets split in final home game

In the first game, Shenandoah won 3-2. In the second game, Shenandoah lost 8-3.


By Dean Greenwood, Reporter

Shenandoah University softball split this Thursday against the McDaniel College Green Terror.

The Hornets played their final home games of the season. In the first game, Shenandoah won 3-2. In the second game, Shenandoah lost 8-3.

Senior Karli Rorabaugh hit a two-RBI single to open up the scoring for the game. In the sixth inning, sophomore Janae Hester drove in the game-winning run for the Hornets.

Freshman Katherine Seidl received the win as the pitcher for the first game.

In the second game, the Green Terror jumped to a six-run lead. Shenandoah responded with a three run inning to cut the lead in half.

The Hornets would not score again and took a loss.

Shenandoah takes the road and plays their final games of the regular season on Saturday at Randolph College. If they win both games, the Hornets will make the playoffs.

Softball falls to Lynchburg

The Shenandoah University softball team lost two home games to Lynchburg College on Wednesday.

By Dean Greenwood, Reporter

The Shenandoah University softball team lost two home games to Lynchburg College on Wednesday.

The first game was a blowout with a score of 9-1.

Lynchburg opened up the scoring with three runs in the second inning. Shenandoah responded with a run of their own. With senior Kristen Weadon on first, senior Lindsay Corbin smashed a ball that looked like it would be a home run. It ended up being a triple. She was left stranded on third at the end of the inning.

In the seventh inning, Lynchburg put the game away with six runs. Shenandoah could not make a comeback.

The Hornets had only three hits.

In the second game, senior Haley Koeninger drove in the only run for Shenandoah. Shenandoah had a chance to tie the game, but Lynchburg got two outs on groundouts, and an out on a pop up.

Freshman Katie Seidl pitched both games allowing a total of 12 hits and 10 runs.

Shenandoah will host Emory and Henry College on Saturday.

Softball suffers royal defeat

Shenandoah University’s women’s softball team lost both games against the Eastern Mennonite University Royals on Tuesday.

By Dean Greenwood, Reporter

Shenandoah University’s women’s softball team lost both games against the Eastern Mennonite University Royals on Tuesday.

The Hornets came into the games with a 2-4 record, and wanted to even their record with four wins. Unfortunately, the Hornets were swept in two close games.

In the first game, freshman Katie Seidl took the mound. She gave up six hits and three runs. She also had four strikeouts.

In the first inning, the Royals scored one run to take the lead. When it was the Hornets turn to bat, sophomore Breanne Smith made it to third base and freshman Makaela Dawkins scored to tie the game at 1.

In the third inning, the Royals scored two runs off of one hit to take a two run lead.

In the sixth inning, Smith scored on a hit by sophomore Carrie Robinson to leave the Hornets trailing by just one. With two outs, the Hornets did an aggressive double steal to try and tie the game, but Robinson was tagged out trying to advance to home.

The Hornets were shut out in the second game with only three hits, while the Royals tallied seven. Seidl pitched the whole game once again.

The Hornets have had six wins and 14 losses this season.

The Hornets will travel to Gettysburg Thursday to play a double-header.

Women’s lacrosse falls to Roanoke

The Shenandoah University women’s lacrosse team lost 7-6 against the Roanoke College Maroons on Tuesday. It was the Hornets’ first in-conference game of the season.

By Dean Greenwood, Reporter

(Photo by Damon Mackin)

The Shenandoah University women’s lacrosse team lost 7-6 against the Roanoke College Maroons on Tuesday. It was the Hornets’ first in-conference game of the season.

The first half was a goaltending battle. The Maroons scored rather quickly, but Shenandoah junior Annie McCorry came back with a goal of her own to tie the game at the 15 minute mark. The game looked as if it would go into halftime tied, but the Maroons’ Allison Beames scored her second goal of the game to take a 2-1 lead going into halftime.

The Hornets did not start off the second half well. Roanoke scored four goals within the first ten minutes to give them a 6-1 lead. Though Shenandoah was trailing, the women did not give up. They made a comeback, which left them down by just one with 14 seconds left.

As time was about to expire, junior Abby Zorrilla took a shot that went just wide of the goal.

Beames was the leading scorer in the game with four goals. McCorry had three goals, which was the most for the Hornets.

The Hornets will play on the road against Virginia Wesleyan College on Saturday.