Rice University’s Student Newspaper — Since 1916

Sunday, June 04, 2023 — Houston, TX

Ian Chiang

SPORTS 4/17/13 7:00pm

Club baseball aims toward trip to Nationals

Rice University's baseball team is currently ranked No. 23 in the nation. However, another baseball team exists on campus that many students may be unfamiliar with despite its similarly impressive track record. Formed in 2004, the Rice club baseball team has now played in more than 100 games, but the team had a rocky start.

NEWS 4/10/13 7:00pm

Female tennis star, Beazant enjoys life both on and off the court

With the women's tennis regular season coming to an end tomorrow, the Rice Owls' record stands at 16-4 following an 11-game winning streak. The hard work and perseverance the team has invested this season has led it to be ranked as high as No. 20 in the nation. As the team rides an 11-game winning streak and looks to carry the momentum into the post-season, one player has majorly contributed to the team's success. 

SPORTS 11/1/12 7:00pm

Rice Women's Cross Country excels at Conference

The Rice women's cross country team took its talents to Hattiesburg, Miss., on Oct. 29 to compete in the 2012 Conference USA Cross Country Championships, hosted by the University of Southern Mississippi. Last year, the women finished in third place behind Southern Methodist University and the University of Tulsa. This year, the women found themselves finishing in a tie for fourth place with University of Alabama at Birmingham. They finished behind SMU, Tulsa and East Carolina University.

NEWS 9/19/12 7:00pm

Marie Thompson returns healthy and ready to race

Injuries are a part of sports. Whether it is at the professional level or just high school athletics, injuries can plague athletes and prevent them from practicing and competing. Yet the toll injuries can take on athletes, both mentally and physically, is unknown to the average sports fan. What exactly does an athlete at a highly competitive level go through during the process of recovering from a severe injury? Marie Thompson, a senior on the Rice women's cross country team, experienced firsthand how serious injuries can be to an athlete but now focuses her attention to the current season post injury. On Sept. 14, Thompson and nine other runners competed for Rice at the Rice Invitational. With a time of 13:01 in a 3,800-meter race, Thompson led the Rice squad to a second-place finish. She finished seventh out of 138 runners, noteworthy considering this was her first race back after battling injuries for the last 18 months.  "I was so excited to race - it was so fun to be back on the line again," Thompson said. "I was nervous a few weeks ago, but last week, we had a workout where I felt great, and something in my brain switched from 'I'm healthy' to 'I'm healthy, and I'm ready to race again.'"  Head Coach Jim Bevan said he was incredibly pleased with Thompson's performance over the weekend.  "She picked up where she left off. Thompson is going to be much better as the season progresses; she got started with a very good race after a long break, and I know she will only get better," Bevan said. Thompson, who said she had apprehensions about her first race back, was also pleased.  "I think the race went pretty well," Thompson said. "Nothing can really prepare you for that special kind of race day pain, but overall, I thought it was a good effort, and I'm happy and relieved to have a solid start." Thompson said her injury was concentrated around her hip. "It's a long story, and we're not really sure how it started, but toward the end of my junior year cross country season, my legs were not right," Thompson said. "I continued to race into that indoor season, but by then I had a lot of pain in my right hip. Over the course of the next year, I saw a lot of doctors, trainers, surgeons, physical therapists and chiropractors who each had different opinions of what was going on." Thompson described the pain she persevered through last year as a junior.  "Essentially, through over-training or bad shoes, the back part of my right leg had shut down," Thompson said. "My glutes and hamstrings were just not firing, and the front of my hip, quad and IT band had to compensate. By the time I stopped running and realized how serious the issue was, there were strains and inflammation in a lot of muscles in the front of my hip, and it was a frustrating trial-and-error process of rehab and treatment to see what my body would respond to." Injuries can be physically deteriorating for an athlete. However, injuries can also impact the mental toughness of an athlete. It can be extremely difficult to cope with missing competitions while enduring through the entire recovery and healing process.  Bevan understands what it takes for an athlete at the college level to recover from injuries.  "It is very frustrating for any high-achieving athlete," Bevan said. It is even tougher when they enjoy the basic act of running and they can't run without pain. It is very much a day-to-day situation, and not being able to do what is their instinct is very tough." Thompson went on to explain the other struggles she faced outside the physical pain of her injury.  "It takes you away from a sport you love, from teammates you love, and from competition you love," Thompson said. "There were absolutely periods of time where I was really lost, in pain, cross-training alone and completely frustrated."  Fortunately for Thompson, she had a supportive cast of coaches, teammates, friends and family that helped her along the way. This cast included Rice alumna and past All-American runner Becky Wade (Martel '12). Thompson said she was incredibly thankful for teammate Wade's support during the ordeal.  "Wade, who graduated last year and went through a huge injury herself, had some great advice: Sometimes, you can't control the situation, but you can always control your perspective," Thompson said. "That was kind of the philosophy I lived by for a while, and even though there were bad days, in the long term, I knew it would be worth it." Bevan also said that Thompson was able to mature because of the experience.  "Thompson has done a great job of learning about her body and where she is at and what needs to be done," Bevan said. "In addition, she has stayed optimistic about running and racing throughout her period of time away from racing," Thompson explained that she was able to learn and draw motivation from her teammates. "Being a distance runner is riding a fine line between hard training and injury sometimes, and some of the most talented friends and athletes I know on this team - Halsey Fowler, Keltie John, Jo Ohm, Gabe Cuadra, Matt Carey - have all been through some tough times with injuries," Thompson said. "Being there for each other and helping each other get back was huge for me." Competing at such a high level as the NCAA Division I means athletes need to put in extra dedication and hard work in order to put themselves in the game.  Injuries may seem to derail athletes, but according to Thompson, the same amount of determination needed to compete needs to be translated to a strong impetus for recovery. "The discipline, motivation and just sheer work ethic it takes to rehab, get treatment and cross-train day after day can be mentally and physically exhausting," Thompson said. "We're not coming back because we want to be able to run again. We're coming back from injury because we want to compete with the best, and to do that, there's no cutting corners."  In order to stay healthy for the rest of the season, Thompson said she has taken on a variety of injury-preventive strategies. "No distance runner is going to feel great all of the time, but I make sure I'm constantly stretching, foam-rolling and keeping up with my strength stuff," Thompson said. "I've learned to be completely honest with my coach and my trainer if something isn't right and that it takes more guts to call it and be safe than it does to train through the pain." While injuries are obviously never considered a positive experience, Thompson said that they do have certain positive aspects, including helping her to develop a new perspective and outlook on her passsion.  "I've come out of this a stronger person and a stronger and definitely smarter runner, and that's invaluable," Thompson said. "My whole perspective about why I run and race has changed. I'm so happy and thankful to be healthy and to have the opportunity to run for Rice again with an amazing coach and an incredible group of girls." 

SPORTS 9/13/12 7:00pm

Soccer freshmen score

With Conference USA play slowly approaching, the Rice University women's soccer team has a total record of two wins, four losses and one tie. So far this season, it has been the youth of the soccer team leading the charge and performing well in games. This has proved crucial to the team's overall success because last year's team leader in points and shots, junior Jessica Howard, is out due to injury. "Howard's phenomenal play last season led to so many attacking opportunities." Head Coach Nicky Adams said, "With Howard out, some key players stepped up and help contribute in Jessica's absence." This year's soccer team welcomes seven freshmen, highlighted by Holly Hargreaves and Lauren Hughes. Sophomore goalkeeper Amy Czyz has also played extremely well, proving that the younger members on the team have stepped up and cemented their roles on the team. In the first game of the season against Baylor University, Czyz defended the Rice goal well, posting a career-high of eight saves. Though she performed well, the Baylor offense had an advantage over the Owls with 24 shots to eight. Hargreaves led the Rice offense with three shots. Hargreaves improved on her performance in the second game against Louisiana State University, scoring her first career collegiate goal from 35 yards out to give Rice a 1-0 lead. Czyz had yet another career game, helping her team with 11 saves for a new career high. The game went into two overtimes after LSU tied the game in the 74th minute. The game resulted in a 1-1 tie with no team scoring during the overtime periods.The freshmen on the team again showed their prowess as Hargreaves and Hughes both scored goals against McNeese State University for the team's first victory of the season. In a loss to Texas Christian University in which Hargreaves led the team with five shots; Hughes followed with four attempts. Another freshman, Jasmine Isokpunwu, had three shots and the Rice Owls won against Texas State University 2-1. In this game, Hargreaves and Hughes again both had goals as two other freshmen, Danielle Spriggs and Isokpunwu, were also in the starting lineup aiding the cause. Although the team went on to lose two games against Stephen F. Austin University and Okla-homa State University, the Rice women's soccer team looks to be headed towards C-USA competition in good shape. The games that have been played so far have displayed the youthful movement on the team. While Czyz defends the goal, the freshmen duo of Holly Hargreaves and Hughes lead the offense. Their performances show how promising the future looks for the Owls. "The transition to the college level of competition has been smooth," Hargreaves said. "Though the practices have been difficult and intense. It is a very different atmosphere than anywhere else. It is truly a privilege to be a part of Rice soccer." She attributes her performance in games to both the team and the coaching staff. "We work together on everything as a unit," Hargreaves said. "If we are successful it is because of everyone as a whole. It's really an amazing thing to be a part of." Hargreaves also made a point to praise the other years on the team. "There is a lot of talent with every class as well," Hargeaves said. "I think we can truly accomplish whatever we, as a team, set our minds to do." Adams also spoke glowingly about the freshmen class. "Our freshmen class as a whole is a tremendous class and every player has contributed significantly," Adams said. "Each of them is competitive and driven and wants to win. It is very contagious." Adams spoke about how Hargreaves and Hughes have stepped up to score goals. She continued to rave about other freshmen, including the versatile Danielle Spriggs. Other freshmen who have impacted the team and have made their mark include Becca Koval, Jasmine Isokpunwu, Kara Dugall, and Caroline Scruggs. As the team enters C-USA play soon, Adams mentioned the competitive schedule the soccer team has played so far this season. "We play a challenging non-conference schedule to prepare us for conference play," Adams said. She pointed out tough games with nationally ranked the University of Memphis and University of Central Florida. "We have a number of home games left in the season, and we would love to have a big student turn out," Adams said.

NEWS 9/6/12 7:00pm

Women's XC starts season at Houston Invitational

Last Friday, the Rice University women's cross country team entered the Houston Invitational, marking the start of the 2012 cross country season. Even with the loss of last year's top four runners, including All-American and recently named Conference USA Woman of the Year Honoree Becky Wade (Martel '12), the women's team is looking forward to what hopes to be a promising season. The Houston Invitational proved to be a great opportunity for the team to prepare for their upcoming races. Rice entered the meet with six runners taking part in a two-person six-mile relay race at McGregor Park. Though the whole team did not compete in the race, the athletes who did run showed what looks to be another season filled with potential. The pair that consisted of  fifth year senior Keltie John and senior Lindsay Miller finished in fifth place with a time of 38:17. Freshman Eileen Brady and junior Kylie Cullinan finished in eighth place with a time of 39:11. In 12th place was the team of seniors Amanda Gutierrez and Frances Hsu. They finished with a time of 43:25. Coach Jim Bevan was very happy with the team's performance at the race because many of these runners had not run for a long duration.  With the first race of the season behind them, the Rice women's cross country team will look ahead to the Rice Invitational on Sept. 14, followed by a trip to Bethlehem, Pa. for the Paul Short Invitational on Sept. 27. Compared to last year's team, this year's squad includes four new freshmen and other returners that were unable to compete last year. When asked about the team this year, Bevan said, "This team will get better throughout the year. Because we are a mixture of new athletes and returners that haven't raced in awhile, we will need to progress as the season goes on." He described the team as having a wealth of potential and stressed that, "The team needs to focus on staying healthy and managing [their] daily tasks, both in training and in studying and life in general."  The women's cross country team will be led by seniors Marie Thompson and Farrah Madanay, both ready for a breakthrough season. John and seniors Johanna Ohm and Marie Walsh both return from injuries, and sophomores Allison Schaich and Laura Michel both vastly improved over last year's season. Bevan also mentioned the hopeful return of a healthy junior Meredith Gamble, who is a past winner of the C-USA Freshman of the Year award. As for the incoming freshmen, Bevan highlighted the presence of  freshmen Cali Roper and Eleanor Wardleworth, as well as the twins Audrey and Chrissy Wassef.  The Rice women's cross country team looks to continue their success this season.