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LIONS READY TO
Special to the N.E.T.
COMMERCE, Texas After a dramatic lineup change
from last season, the Texas A&M University-Commerce
volleyball team is ready for a challenge.
The Lions are introducing four new faces and seven
veterans in its run up to the Aug. 27 season opener at
the Harding University Classic against Missouri Western.
Second-year Lion head coach Gwendolyn Adams sat down to
discuss the new season.
Last season, the Lions started on a roll, going an
undefeated 4-0 to kick off coach Adams tenure. But
then a disappointing 1-3 performance at the Colorado
State-Pueblo Invitational sent the Lions into a tailspin,
ending in a 15-16 record and a fifth-place finish in the
Lone Star Conference North Division.
Adams says it has been a major push this off-season to
not let that happen again.
It is not a matter of what we will do. It is a
matter of what we have done. Our team dynamic is very
different from last season. We had a fabulous spring and
worked on a lot of fundamentals.
We began the season undefeated because we didnt
face anybody who challenged us. When we began facing
teams that challenged us, mentally we were broke down.
This year, our team has a different mental attitude.
We have more mental toughness. This group of girls
will continue to fight and learn even when the going gets
tough. The mental aspect is going to make a larger
difference in how we compete.
on the floor
Our offense is fast tempo with an emphasis on
middle hitters. [Chasalan] Roberts was an all-conference
player at Temple College. I expect her to make an
I recruited her out of high
school, and she ended up taking the [junior college]
route. So Ive seen her grow from a raw athlete to
someone who was an impact player.
With the addition of Roberts and Colleen Favaro in the
middle, Adams says passing stability is going to allow
for more options with the ball. Were going to
have layouts for fast attacks and with deceptive attack
But for the Lions to return to the top of the LSC, three
returning senior outside hitters are going play their
part, Adams stresses. Meagan Redfearn, [Melinda]
Townsendand Kayla Hanzelkaare going to be big
this year. We have a great group of upperclassmen. I
expect them to lead us physically as well as mentally and
Hanzelka, who had 209 digs in 86 games, is 64 digs from
cracking the A&M-Commerce Top-10 list for all-time
digs. Redfearn had 24 kills in 29 games her junior year.
Townsend had 26 kills in 20 games.
The Lions will have a freshman at setter. Coach Adams is
optimistic about North Mesquite product Jackie Orr.
She has an amazing work ethic, and she will be
ready to run some offense on the court this season.
on the Lions opponents
The Lions face Harding University in their second match.
Its a reminder of what Adams called their best
match of last season, a 3-2 win in Commerce.
The Lions have a tough swim this season, but they arent
backing down. With Division II National Champion North
Alabama, West Texas A&M, with St. Marys and St.
Edwards in their sights, theyre in a position to
catch everybody by surprise.
2004 Texas A&M University-Commerce Volleyball
Date Opponent Site Time
Aug. 27-28 Harding University Classic Searcy, Ark.
Aug. 27 Missouri Western 10:00
Aug. 27 Harding (Ark.) 2:30
Aug. 28 Christian Brothers (Tenn.) 10:00
Aug. 28 Missouri Southern 4:45
Aug. 31 Southern Arkansas Commerce 7:00
Sept. 10 at Henderson State Arkadelphia, Ark. 6:00
Sept. 11 vs. North Alabama Arkadelphia, Ark. Noon
Sept. 14 at St. Edwards Austin 7:00
Sept. 17 at Abilene Christian Abilene 7:00
Sept. 18 at Angelo State San Angelo 2:00
Sept. 20 Dallas Baptist Commerce 7:00
Sept. 24-25 Lone Star Conference Crossover Abilene
Sept. 24 Texas A&M-Kingsville 1:30
Sept. 24 West Texas A&M 7:30
Sept. 25 Eastern New Mexico 3:00
Sept. 28 Henderson State Commerce 7:00
Sept. 30 at Central Oklahoma* Edmond, Okla. 7:00
Oct. 2 at Cameron* Lawton, Okla. 2:00
Oct. 8-9 West Texas A&M Invitational Canyon
Oct. 8 Oklahoma Panhandle State 10:00
Oct. 8 Eastern New Mexico 6:00
Oct. 9 St. Marys 11:00
Oct. 9 at West Texas A&M 5:00
Oct. 12 at Southeastern Oklahoma* Durant, Okla. 7:00
Oct. 14 Midwestern State* Commerce 7:00
Oct. 16 Texas Womans* Commerce 7:00
Oct. 21 Cameron* Commerce 7:00
Oct. 23 Central Oklahoma* Commerce 2:00
Oct. 26 Southeastern Oklahoma* Commerce 7:00
Oct. 29 Ouachita Baptist Commerce 7:00
Nov. 4 Texas Womans* Denton 7:00
Nov. 6 Midwestern State* Wichita Falls 7:00
Nov. 11-13 Lone Star Conference Tournament TBA TBA
*Lone Star Conference North Division Matches All Times
Lions Look Strong
Special to the N.E.T.
COMMERCE, Texas The Texas A&M
University-Commerce Lions tested their game preparations
with a two-hour, 100-play scrimmage Saturday afternoon at
The new Lion spread offense collected 460 total yards in
the scrimmage, scoring six times.
The defense force several new possessions for the offense
and recorded one interception.
We had spurts of well executed plays and spurts
where we lost our concentration, said first-year
Lion head coach Scotty Conley. Overall I was
impressed with the attitude and desire. We just need more
The number one Lion offense was directed by senior
transfer Buster Faulkner of Lilburn, Ga./Parkview via
Valdosta State. Faulkner completed 22-of-31 passes for
232 yards and two touchdowns with one interception. He
also led the Lions to a rushing touchdown on the first
drive of the scrimmage.
Paris true freshman Bryan Hughes threw for 49 yards with
the second-team, hitting 11-of-16 passes. Senior Chris
Miller of Plano, ran the third team, completing 14-of-15
passes for 135 yards with two touchdowns. Miller also ran
in a touchdown from two-yards out.
The Lions threw to 17 different receivers in the
scrimmage as junior Victor Bennett, who led the Lions in
receiving last season, led the team with six receptions
for 73 yards. Junior Toussaint Henderson of Aloha, Ore.,
a first-team NJCAA All-American tight end from Scottsdale
(Ariz.) CC, was just behind with six grabs for 72 yards.
Both had touchdowns from Faulkner.
Junior Tony Frazier of Houston/Eisenhower, a transfer
from the University of New Mexico, led the rushers with
39 yards on seven carries and caught three passes for 51
Redshirt freshman Orlando Hernandez of Austin chalked up
six receptions for 60 yards with the third unit.
Junior linebacker Dennis Connor of Fort Worth/Wyatt had
the lone interception, with a 20-yard return.
The Lions completed 10 days of preseason camp with the
scrimmage. They open the 2004 season at home on Thursday,
August 26 against Southern Arkansas at 6 p.m. The
Muleriders are ranked 11th in NCAA Division II by
Lindys Football Magazine and 21st by Street &
August 26, 2004