To conclude their season, the men’s tennis team competed at the HCAC Men’s Tennis Tournament at the West Indy Racquet Club this past weekend. Beating Hanover College in the first round, the Engineers would though fall short against top-seeded Earlham College in the semifinal round. Earlham would go on to win the HCAC Tournament with a victory over Transylvania University in the championship match. The win marks the third-straight conference tournament victory for Earlham. Rose-Hulman would finish the season with an 11 - 8 record, highlighted by eight wins in their concluding 10 matches.Four Engineers were named to the all-HCAC men’s tennis team. Seniors Ben Paras and Devon Fritz received first-team all-conference honors with honorable mentions all-conference awards going to junior Nate Moore and freshman Matthew Conrad. With 16 doubles victories, the pairing of Paras and Fritz at No. 1 doubles set the Rose-Hulman school record for wins and highest winning percentage. Also earning recognition from the HCAC was senior Randy Billingsley who captured a spot on the league’s all-sportsmanship team.
Leading the men’s golf team with an eighth place finish at the HCAC Conference Championships held over the past two weekends, freshman Sanders Park became the first Rose-Hulman men’s golfer to win all-conference honors since 2000. As a team, the Engineers finished fifth overall out of the eight competing HCAC teams. Claiming the title for the seventh consecutive year was Transylvania University followed by Hanover College in second. Park fired scores of 78 and 75 in the opening two rounds of the championship at the Aston Oaks Golf Course in North Bend, Ohio. To conclude the championship, Park came home strong with rounds of 77 and 73 at the local Rea Park Golf Course. With his eighth place finish, Park also earned the HCAC Freshman of the Year honor, which recognizes the highest placing freshman finisher at the HCAC Conference Championships. Finishing 10th overall, junior Travis Whithaus recorded scores of 77, 79, 78, and 75. Coming third for the Engineers was junior Jeremy Walters with rounds of 86, 91, 80, and 77. Senior Eric Kamer would win the All-Sportmanship Team award for Rose-Hulman.
In a year highlighted by a sixth consecutive outdoor title for the men’s squad and multiple school records by individuals on both the men’s and women’s teams, the Engineers were rightly recognized by the HCAC in results released by the league office this week. In total, the Rose-Hulman track and field team combined to capture 16 all-HCAC outdoor track and field awards. Senior Liz Evans was named HCAC Women’s Field Athlete of the Year, marking the sixth time Evans has won this award. Head coach Larry Cole was named Men’s Head Coach of the Year for the 10th time in his career. Among the seven first-team all-HCAC winners for Rose-Hulman were Tyler Hannan in the 400-meter dash and senior Collin Crowson in the men’s pole vault. Joining them were seniors Jeremiah Edwards and Travis Stallings, junior Clay Becker, sophomore Jake Kelley, and freshman Tyler Duffy. Seniors Greg Larmore and Trey Cahill were named second-team all-HCAC, while junior Andrew Thompson earned the All-Sportsmanship Team award. On the women’s side, the Engineers combined for five all-HCAC awards which included seniors Liz Evans, Creasy Clauser, Tanya Colonna, Gloria Boxell, and junior Erin Cox. Ryann-Rebecca Montgomery earned second-team all-HCAC honors. In addition, Clauser also won the All-Sportsmanship Team award.In competition, the Engineers also had a fruitful day at the Billy Hayes Invitational at Indiana University on Friday evening. Rose-Hulman recorded four top-five finishes and 11 top 10 finishes at the event, which included teams from NCAA Divisions I, II, and III. With a jump of 5’ 7 ¼” in the high jump, senior Liz Evans earned second overall. Senior Creasy Clauser came home in third with a time of 58.13 seconds in the 400-meter dash. Among the other top-five finishes were junior Ryann-Rebecca Montgomery with a fourth-place finish in the 1,500-meter run and senior Tyler Hannan, who finished fifth in the men’s 400-meter dash. Attempting to qualify for the NCAA Division III Outdoor National Championships later this month, senior Trey Cahill competed in the North Central College invitational on Thursday. Cahill would finish fourth in the men’s hammer throw with a toss of 175’ 10 ¼”. With a season-best toss of 185’ 9”, he currently ranks 15th nationally. Seniors Liz Evans, Tyler Hannan, and Travis Stallings will travel to the Louisville Cardinal Invitational this Friday in preparation for the NCAA Division III Outdoor National Championships on May 23-25 at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.
Eric Abegglen • staff writer
For overall team performance in the athletic department, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology captured the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Men’s All-Sports Trophy. This marks the fifth time that the Fightin’ Engineers have earned the honor in the last six years.The Men’s All-Sports Trophy is based on league finishes in 11 men’s sports. Points are calculated by these finishes and the award goes to the HCAC institution that scores the most combined points. Finishing just ahead of Franklin by half a point, Rose-Hulman tallied 66.5 points, with Hanover coming in third with 53 points.In the Commissioner’s Cup standings, which feature the combined performance of the men’s and women’s teams, the Fightin’ Engineers came in second, falling to Franklin by 5.7 points. Rose-Hulman has finished in the top three in the Commissioner’s Cup standings six times in its seven-year HCAC history. Rose-Hulman’s most recent Commissioner’s Cup win came three years ago in the 2009-10 year.To earn the 2013 Men’s All-Sports Trophy, Rose-Hulman relied on four team championships and one runner-up placement. Team championships for the Engineers occurred in basketball, soccer, indoor track and field and outdoor track and field. Second-place honors from the cross country squad and a maximum amount of points provided by the swim team helped to contribute to the overall department score.Rose-Hulman also hosted several championship events this year including the men’s basketball and men’s golf championship. The 2012 NCAA Cross Country Nationals, a first round game in the Division III NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, and the six- or eight- team 2013 NCAA Mideast Baseball Regional were among other championship events that were held on campus this year.
Adam Nolte • faculty writer
With the summer drawing near, I thought I would write about an outdoor hobby that I particularly enjoy—coffee roasting. The specialty coffee industry in the United States has grown enormously in the past few decades. At nearly any grocery store, next to the cheap, big-label, pre-ground tubs one can find any number of whole-bean “specialty” coffees that offer modestly improved taste for an often significantly higher price tag. Thus, the question: “Should you buy up?” To add a moral dimension, many higher-priced brands argue that purchasing their products results in increased economic benefits to the farmers (often in developing countries) from whom they obtain their coffee. To be sure, a full cost-benefit analysis of the fundamental coffee choice (“cheap” vs. “specialty”) would require a four-credit course spanning wide-ranging topics from consumer taste preference and psychology to questions of global sustainability and fair trade. Nevertheless, if you would like to drink great coffee at affordable prices while simultaneously encouraging fairer economic practices and consumer awareness, I offer a solution: Buy your coffee green and roast your own.Home coffee-roasting offers a number of advantages. The most attractive benefit is the incredible taste. There is simply no comparison between drinking coffee brewed from beans roasted two days ago versus beans roasted two weeks (or even months) ago—even if those beans were packed fresh into special bags or cans with that cool little one-way valve. Another benefit is cost; depending upon the country of origin, high-quality coffee beans can cost as little as $5 per pound. Even if you add an approximately 15% markup to that price to account for the loss in water weight during the roasting process, your intensely awesome home-roasted beans will come in at roughly half the cost of a bag of Starbucks.Yet another benefit to home coffee roasting is the fun factor. Granted, I’m a chemical engineer, and we love nothing more than taking raw materials and turning them into finished goods. Still, I believe nearly anyone could gain enjoyment from coffee-roasting—it is time-efficient (10-15 min per batch) and, like any good hobby, easy to learn but challenging to master. Home coffee-roasting equipment does not need to be fancy. Though you can drop hundreds of dollars on a specialty home roaster, I use a cheap hand-cranked Whirley-Pop popcorn popper on an outdoor propane grill and get equally good results. Some hot-air popcorn poppers work extremely well, too. With a little practice, you’ll be roasting your coffee to your own exacting taste specification, whether a cinnamon-brown breakfast blend or a coal-black French roast. Heck, sometimes I’ll pull half a batch at light roast and continue with the second half to a darker level; mixing them produces otherwise unattainable flavor profiles. All of this fun can be yours when you roast your own.A final benefit I have come to appreciate from roasting my own coffee has been an increased global awareness of where my food comes from and whom my consumer choices support. I purchase most of my green beans from Sweet Maria’s (http://www.sweetmarias.com), and those folks do an admirable job of visiting and documenting (in text and pictures) the various farms, families, and workers from whom they source. This has encouraged me to learn more about the various coffee-producing countries throughout the world, many of which unfortunately are marginalized and less developed, and therefore have cultures and histories less familiar to many of us.If you are interested in getting started roasting at home, the Sweet Maria’s website listed above has a particularly well-stocked e-library of resources for the beginning roaster. Perhaps in the fall when we reconvene for classes, I can share some of my favorite roasting tips and bean choices. There is something to be said, however, for the voyage of discovery—so, if you are looking for a summer pastime, read up, buy yourself a Whirley-Pop, order some beans, and dive right in!
There are few words to describe how long these ten weeks for classes can feel for a student. Homework needs completed and turned in between multiple classes while others have team meetings and projects due. Some have presentations and others may have papers and take home tests.No matter what the schedule looks like, the final weeks are grim. Many students “check out” mentally weeks in advance of finals. However, that does not mean we have to give up.This “Final Stretch” is the culmination of all students have been preparing for. With nearly fourty percent of a class grade for the average class still waiting in that final, the cards are not yet on the table.Though sleep deprived, irritated, pressured for time, and having little personal time until those tests are taken, we as students need to remember that we are almost there.Olympians don’t slow down when the finish line is in sight. Instead, that final burst of speed, a moment of adrenaline, lets the athlete push through full force to the end.Even sitting here, writing this article with two tests tomorrow, a mild headache coming on, thinking about my team meeting tonight, I continue to trudge on towards that goal.Summer will give me all the time necessary for sleep along with the relaxation required to destress from exams. This is the moment for every student to shine. “Senioritis” has struck most of those graduating this May, giving a sense of lethargy to the entire campus. This is evident in the trend of students missing that one Friday evening class that finishes up the day or the morning class because the bed is just too comfortable.Beds will be more comfortable during the summer when a student knows they gave their all to their finals and may reap the rewards of their labors. There is no greater feeling for me than that of accomplishment. Knowing that the good works I am basking in were of my own doing.So maybe that first hour class at eight in the morning sounds nice to skip over once or jetting out early so that a nice nap or a movie could be caught if you just “forgot” to go to that last class. However, every little assignment and day missed will add up. Just stick through and things will turn out for the best.I can only hope that everyone can push through, making the end of this school year an amazing one. So let thanks go out to all who had an impact on any student, faculty, or staff here at Rose-Hulman.With so much hard work put into making this school the one we all know and love, as students we should honor that dedication with a last push on this “Final Stretch” of Spring Semester.Good luck to everyone these final days and best of wishes. I am personally looking forward to hearing new opinions from all over the campus next year, along with finishing this semester with a strong work ethic and knowing this ended with my best foot forward.
For those seeking something new and a little weird, Unproductive Fun Time has just the thing for you. “OFF” is a game, recently translated from the French in which it was written, that is surreal, unsettling, and highly addictive. The game follows the quests of The Batter as he endeavors to “purify” the land of evil spirits.As you travel through various bizzare zones, The Batter will grow in strength and learn new moves. There is, of course, the obligatory merchant to sell better weapons, armor, and restorative items. You’re accompanied throughout the game by a somewhat discomforting feline which sports a grin taken from young childrens’ nightmares.The game features some grueling random battles not unknown to players of games like “Pokemon,” and is displayed in an 8-bit style. The battles feel a little like “Final Fantasy,” but the storyline is the game’s real hook. You’ll more than likely find yourself gritting your teeth and pushing through some very frustrating areas for the sake of finding out just a little more about the game’s mythos.At times the gameplay has a difficult time supporting it. Later levels might leave you feeling like you’re grinding away through red tape, wishing you could just read the story, but the game makes you work for it. The puzzles are clever, but traveling through the land filled with random battles becomes grating.That said, the game is worth a playthrough. It’s much more of a story and an experience than what most of us think when we hear the word “game,” but it shines despite its flaws. “OFF” is certainly not for everyone, but if it does get you hooked, you’ll love the journey.Rating: 3/5 elephants
“Iron Man” is a movie series that has frequently been hailed as not only the beginning of the Marvel Movie Franchise, but of the “modernized” comic book heroes who all mostly had their origins in the 40’s. The first movie, “Iron Man,” was correctly hailed as a great comic book movie, adapting the character’s origins to a more modern interpretation, complete with the desire to change the world and himself, sacrificing much in order to do so.“Iron Man,” the first one, is also remembered as the last good “Iron Man” movie, at least by me.“Iron Man 3” is a film that retreads already beaten, worn, and basically abused paths of both movie, comic book, and even a few game story arcs. It begins with Tony Stark haunted by his dreams because of the invasion of New York City. You remember it as the climax of “The Avengers,” a scene you probably celebrate. Stark does not agree. Paranoid because of the experience, he builds several Iron Man suits out of boredom and a little preparation. You already know where this is going.Cue several terrorist attacks from the Mandarin, a villain who actually looks like his comic book counterpart, for once. Tony, the loveable selfless guy he is, doesn’t give it a passing nod until one of his personal guards is injured. Then it becomes personal.I can’t even continue along this plot without already stating what you either already know or can simply speculate. The whole “knocked down to get back up” story line has been done so much and repurposed so often that I nearly fell asleep in a few parts. I would have, too, if the explosions didn’t keep rocking me out of my seat.Ah yes, explosions: the sure fire sign that a movie is a serious A-List contender. Make the most obscene and unbelievable set up for an explosion, complete with some final showdown occurring just before or after it, and you’re sure to guarantee more than a few hungry movie watchers who secretly dream of dropping bombs from airplanes. It’s easy to admit that the action is the star of the movie, because the plot sure isn’t, and I don’t even want to kid about the characters. One out of ten is interesting. That’s all and it isn’t nearly enough.“Iron Man” was a great movie because it had some great comedy that stopped on a dime once a bomb went off and everyone started getting into the mood of a battlefield. No jokes were cracked, no plot armor was forged, battles were deadly, fierce and real. Queue “Iron Man 2” and you see the action stop on a dime now because someone has some great joke they want to crack. Once he successfully delivers said message, he is granted +1 plot armor, making him immune to damage for the next ten minutes. This doesn’t change in Iron Man 3. That’s a hint.A lot of people are talking about the twist being very original and clever. I won’t spoil it, but I also won’t praise it too much. I’ll admit I didn’t see it coming, mostly because I like where it was going without it, but if I had stopped to think for five minutes and compared the first hour of the film to the prior two “Iron Man” movies, I’d realize they weren’t targeting the same crowd of people as the villains. Good thing the plot twist fixed that one.Over all, “Iron Man 3” is a severely over-praised movie, still riding on the waves of the original and not looking to jump off the board anytime soon. Who knows? Next movie we might get to see Tony jump a shark.Rating: 2/5 Elephants
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