Wrestling joins OWU sports family

Of all the sports and clubs offered at Ohio Wesleyan University, wrestling is not one of them. That changed when sophomores Ifa Abduljelil and Josh Pyles started the wrestling club.

The club currently has 24 members and practices from 6–8 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday with a Sunday practice from 4–6 p.m. All practices are held in Branch Rickey Arena.

“I was really surprised (with the turnout),” Abduljelil said. “I mean, wrestling is a big thing, but I didn’t expect 24 guys to be signing up at a small school like this.”

While setting up the club has taken some time, and there are currently no wrestling meets scheduled, a major accomplishment has been made – the wrestling club found a coach.

Tom Josefowicz, the new coach, has been an athletic trainer for OWU since the fall of 2009.

Josefowicz wrestled at Eastern Michigan University and worked as a graduate assistant athletic trainer for the Iowa State University wrestling team.

“I’ve known Tom from football and track. He has the famous cauliflower ear so when you see that you have to talk about wrestling,” Abduljelil said.

He continued by saying that Josefowicz was very excited that someone finally started a wrestling club and that students who are interested will finally have an opportunity.

“I look forward to getting in shape and sharing different techniques with other wrestlers,” said junior Soma Yoshida, who is studying at OWU for a year. “I’m from Japan so it’s good for me to wrestle in a different style.”

Yoshida is a free style wrestler; university level wrestling is done in folk style.

At this time the goals of the wrestling club are to continue to practice consistently, schedule meets as early as the spring semester of 2015 and establish wrestling as an official sport at OWU.

OWU radio returns

OWU radio equipment. Photo courtesy of Alex Gross.
Old OWU radio equipment from Slocum Hall. Photo courtesy of Adelle Brodbeck.

After a nearly two-year hiatus, Ohio Wesleyan online radio makes its return.

There has been no school radio since the spring semester of the 2012-2013 school year. At that time the station was ran from the third floor of Slocum Hall with outdated equipment.

The new station is located on the main floor of Phillips Hall. In a move away from traditional antenna broadcasting, OWU radio streams digitally.

The reemergence of OWU radio can largely be credited to Paul Kostyu, associate professor of journalism, Provost Charles Stinemetz and to The Transcript‘s media adviser Jo Ingles. The station also received financial backing from the office of the dean of academic affairs.

Conor Golden, who serves as the station’s general manager, has been very enthusiastic about getting it up and running. “I have been asking about the radio ever since it was shut down the spring of my freshman year,” Golden said.

A lot of progress has been made since then. An outside contractor was hired to do electrical work, heating and painting. Those updates alone took a few months. Further delays came in the form of computer software and streaming issues.

Professor Kostyu helped by salvaging what equipment he could. That equipment was moved from Slocum to Phillips, and included old, sound-proof insulation that now lines the station walls.

“We want to make sure it is professional and fun,” Golden explained. “There will be a lot more of a variety in regards to shows.”

Junior Conor Golden explains how the radio equipment works.
Junior Conor Golden explains how the radio equipment works.

While most shows will be music oriented at first, the goal is to add public affairs reporting in the coming semester.

Golden even hinted at a show possibly being hosted by Public Safety officer Jay McCann. Until then, music ranging from hip-hop to classical to hipster rock can be heard on OWU radio. And anyone can DJ.

“Anybody on campus can have a show on this station…and that’s a new thing,” Kostyu said.

“We’re really excited about the fact that students are excited and are joining in. It’s kind of a different feel than what it was my freshman year,” said junior Billy George, who like Golden was a former DJ for the station. George will be working as the station’s program director. Students will be able to listen to OWU radio at radio.owu.edu.

Seniors guide men’s lacrosse into another hopeful season

Men's lacrosse team in a huddle.
Men’s lacrosse team in a huddle.

After a successful 2014 season, the Ohio Wesleyan men’s lacrosse team is looking to build off of experience and momentum.

The team went 12-4 last year, finishing second in the NCAC behind Denison University. OWU is returning a total of 10 seniors from that team.

Senior Kyle Foster. Photo courtesy of the battling bishops website.
Senior Kyle Foster. Photo courtesy of the battling bishops website.

One of those seniors is captain and midfielder Kyle Foster.

“We’re optimistic about the season, we know what we need to accomplish,” Foster said.

Foster was named to the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association Division III All-America team as an honorable mention last season. Battling Bishop goalkeeper Ryan McMahon, who is also a returning senior, was named as an honorable mention as well.

“Personal accolades are nice but at the end of the day that’s not why you play, you play for the guy next to you,” Foster said.

OWU opens the season with a home game on Feb. 14 against Augustana College at Selby Stadium. A week later the team will go on to play Roanoke College in Virginia.

Senior Tommy Minkler. Photo courtesy of the battling bishops website.
Senior Tommy Minkler. Photo courtesy of the battling bishops website.

The Battling Bishops are looking to take it one game at a time, but it is hard for them not to have their sights set on surpassing Denison and the NCAC championship.

“For us to win the NCAC this year, we are going to have to maintain a level of consistent play that we have never had here before, which means that we cannot afford to take any days off,” said senior attacker Tommy Minkler.

Until the opening game against Augustana, the Battling Bishops will continue to practice out in the cold and brave the winter climate of Ohio.

“Every day, our goal is to improve from the day before,” Minkler said. “If we have that mentality all season long the team will be very successful in the NCAC and NCAA.”

Coach DeWitt reaches 300 win milestone

Coach Mike DeWitt. Photo courtesy of the Battling Bishops website.
Coach Mike DeWitt. Photo courtesy of the Battling Bishops website.

Coach Mike Krzyzewski of Duke University isn’t the only men’s college basketball coach earning milestone wins.

With a 76-64 victory over DePauw University on Jan. 17, Coach Mike DeWitt of the Ohio Wesleyan University men’s basketball team earned his 300th career win, 250 of which have been with OWU.

The 300 wins are not the only thing that have marked success for Coach DeWitt. He has led OWU to three consecutive, 20-plus win seasons as well as three consecutive NCAA Division III playoff appearances.

The very next game, a win over Oberlin College on Jan. 21, gave him the best winning percentage (.595) for an OWU men’s basketball coach since Raymond Detrick in 1938-1939.

But DeWitt is not one to stop and celebrate such accomplishments. It is difficult for most coaches to do so in basketball with the seasons being so fast paced.

“If you coach long enough, coaching milestones are going to happen naturally,” DeWitt said. “These milestones are a direct reflection of the quality of players I’ve had the opportunity to coach here at Ohio Wesleyan.”

One of those quality players is senior guard Nick Felhaber who has played for DeWitt for four years.

“It’s been a great experience,” Felhaber said. “For me as a player I’ve had some ups and downs with injuries and stuff. He’s remained patient with me and now that it’s my senior year, I’ve stepped up and have a big role.”

Felhaber and his fellow teammates didn’t know about the milestone going into the game against DePauw.

“We had no idea, nobody on the team knew. We found out after the game. Actually somebody put it in a group message that we have for all the players to communicate,” Felhaber said.

Now, with the 300th win behind them and a winning pace that could see another 20-plus win season, the men’s basketball team has their sights on the NCAC regular season title.

A Portable Theatre offers new take on classic ghost stories


The Ohio Wesleyan Performing Arts Series welcomed A Portable Theatre to the Chappelear Drama Center for a night of classic ghost stories.

As stated on their website, “APT is a non-profit, professional theatrical touring company based in central Ohio.”

The performance, which took place Jan. 24, was titled “Tales from the Grave” and functioned like a live radio play. It featured such ghost stories as: “The Signal-Man” by Charles Dickens, “The Cask of Amontillado” by Edgar Allan Poe and “The Body-Snatchers” by Robert Louis Stevenson.

The APT actors taking part in the first ever performance of “Tales from the Grave” were Damian Bowerman, Ed Vaughan, Jonathan Putnam and Jon Farris. Geoffrey Nelson who acts in other APT performances was playwright and director.

Though the stories were meant to be scary, there were also elements of comedy and sound effects that left the audience roaring with laughter. Comedy was often portrayed during the radio commercials that were acted out in the beginning and between each ghost story.

“I liked the comedy, it helped give contrast and a lighter mood,” junior Ciara Cooperider said. Cooperider was one of over 100 audience members.

The sound effects came from home made and store bought props including dry peas in a box, a kazoo, bricks, bells and a rainmaker.

“I also liked the fact that you had to imagine what was going on and the noise (sound effects) adds to that,” Cooperider said.

As “Tales from the Grave” came to a close with a round of applause from the crowd, the actors took a brief intermission before coming out for a Q&A. While answering questions from fans of the performance who stuck around, the four actors along with Nelson discussed rehearsing, coming up with the props and their nostalgia for performing.

“I really liked it, it was really good,” said Jimmy Russell, a senior at Delaware Hayes High School. “It was a good take on classic radio plays.”

Men’s swim team brings home more than just tans

Four Ohio Wesleyan swimmers show off their medals earned at the Bob Mowerson Sprint Meet on Saturday.
Four Ohio Wesleyan swimmers show off their medals earned at the Bob Mowerson Sprint Meet on Saturday.

The Ohio Wesleyan University men’s swim team made its way down to Florida where they trained hard, enjoyed the weather and won a few medals along the way.

“It’s my favorite part of the season. It was great heading down there,” sophomore Will Paull said. Paull medaled in the Sidney S. Asher Cup, a 100-meter freestyle event, at the Bob Mowerson Sprint Meet beside teammate and fellow sophomore Greyson Goodwin who won the race.

The team competed in the meet after training in Stewart, Fla. The meet took place at the International Swimming Hall of Fame pool in Fort Lauderdale.

“We have a good group of people. It was great to be with the team in above-freezing weather,” Goodwin joked.

Paull and Goodwin were two of four Battling Bishops to medal. The others to medal were juniors Bryce Uzzolino and Andy Cumston.

Uzzolino and Cumston both medaled in the William Post Sackett Cup race, a 400-meter event. The race is famous for allegedly being won by Olympic and American national champions alike. Uzzolino finished in second with Cumston finishing in third.

“It’s always fun to win, especially in something like that where you get this cool medal,” Uzzolino said.

Upon returning home, OWU lost a close dual meet to the College of Wooster and rebounded by defeating John Carroll University handedly.

Now the Bishops set their sights on the NCAC championship with only a few more dual meets left in the season. The NCAC tournament begins on Feb. 11 and lasts through Feb. 14.

“Right now we are really focused on our conference meet which is in mid-February. Right now that’s what our drive is towards,” Uzzolino said. “It’s pretty much the final push towards the end of our season.”

Men’s soccer primed for NCAA tournament run

Senior Colton Bloecher fires a free-kick opportunity against Kenyon College at the Jay Martin Soccer Complex on Nov. 8. Photo by Graham Lucas
Senior Colton Bloecher fires a free-kick opportunity against Kenyon College at the Jay Martin Soccer Complex on Nov. 8. Photo by Graham Lucas

With a 3-2 win over DePauw University on Nov. 6, the men’s soccer team finds themselves in a familiar spot, the North Coast Athletic Conference finals.

There they will meet Kenyon College on Saturday Nov. 8.

During the regular season the two teams played to a tie at Mavec Field in Gambier Ohio. This time the match will take place at the Jay Martin Soccer Complex here on the campus of Ohio Wesleyan.

The Battling Bishops have mustered up an impressive 9-1-1 record at home and look to continue their four game winning streak by claiming the NCAC title. The Lords of Kenyon College also come in to Saturday’s match with a four game winning streak.

“We pretty much know what we’re going to get with Kenyon. They’re big, athletic, physical and intense,” said senior Colton Bloecher.

“I think if we are able to match their intensity and defend well, we will be successful on Saturday.”

Bloecher contributed one goal on two shots and an assist in the win over DePauw.

“I think my goal last night was an important one, but I also think we should have scored a few more, myself included,” he said. “I thought Matt Cohen’s goal a few minutes into the match really set the tone for the night, and Evan Lee’s goal in the second half proved a crucial one.”

In fact, Junior Evan Lee’s second half goal proved to be the difference that would advance OWU to the NCAC finals.

“Last year they (Kenyon) lost to us in the final at our place and it is here (Jay Martin Soccer Complex) again,” Lee said. “They have the motivation to beat us and they are trying to prove that they are the class of the NCAC now. They will come out flying but if we match their intensity then we will be fine.”

Men’s basketball looking to reach new heights

The men’s basketball team will look to improve off a 20-8 season in 2014. Transcript file photo by Jane Suttmeier
The men’s basketball team will look to improve off a 20-8 season in 2014. Transcript file photo by Jane Suttmeier

If you asked any player on the Ohio Wesleyan men’s basketball team if there is such a thing as a rebuilding year for the program, the answer would be no.

The team led by Coach Mike DeWitt began practice for the 2014-15 season two weeks ago.

Over the past three years OWU has won at least 20 games during the regular season. Many players who were a part of that success have since graduated. But that doesn’t mean the goals set by this seasons Battling Bishops team is any different than past years.

“We have a young team, and as a senior, and even for the juniors and sophomores, it is important that we play at a championship level every day in order to set the standard for the freshmen,” said senior guard Nick Felhaber, who is the only senior on the team.

A lack of seniority isn’t the only problem OWU faces. Height will be another obstacle to overcome following last year’s graduation of 6 feet 7 inch center Reuel Rogers.

“We are having to make some adjustments to our offensive and defensive strategy this year because we lost a lot of size.” said Felhaber.

Junior Matt Jeske and sophomore Ryan McCron, 6 feet 5 inch post players, could be the solution to this problem. Junior Claude Gray, though undersized, has also found success in the past playing as a forward.

Additionally, junior Joey Kinsley who stands at 6 feet 6 inches will look to fill the role as well. Kinsley is coming off of a shoulder injury that saw him sidelined for most of last season.

“Coming off of a season-long shoulder injury last year, it made me really appreciate and love the game of basketball more than I already did,” said Kinsley. “I would like to help my team out in whatever way possible and necessary in order for us to succeed.”

The motivated Battling Bishops open the season on the road at Kenyon College on Nov. 18. The team will look to continue its past success in one of the toughest division III men’s basketball conferences, the NCAC.

“If we leave it all on the court and do what our coaches ask us, at the end of the day we will once again be successful.” said Kinsley.

Men’s soccer sinks Ohio Northern

By Spencer Kirksey
Transcript Correspondent

Two minutes is all it took for the men’s soccer team to see the ball crash into the back of the Ohio Northern University net.

The opening goal by Junior Brian Schaefer was the first of many for the 22nd ranked Battling Bishops. “I think it definitely relieved a lot of pressure. We have been struggling to score early all year.” Said Schaefer.

A shift of momentum in favor of the Polar Bears followed Schaefer’s goal. Ohio Northern Senior Keegan Ross attempted to tie the game with a decent shot that was saved by Ohio Wesleyan Senior goalie Colin Beemiller.

“Jay always says that in every game there will be momentum switches and we just have to get through those and that’s what we did…” explained Beemiller, referring to Coach Jay Martin.

OWU finished the first half with a 1-0 lead on nine shot attempts.

Contrary to the nights cool weather, the Bishops came out on fire, scoring three goals that were all within 15 minutes of each other.

Freshman Jeremy Brown added the final goal in the eighty-eighth minute.

“Finally scoring felt great, especially in such a big game for our team” said Brown. The fifth and final goal would give OWU a 5-1 win over a tough ONU opposition.

Brown said a win feels good but such a dominate win over such a good team always feels better.

The win snapped a two game winless streak for the Bishops.

OWU will look to build on that win in upcoming games against Baldwin Wallace University on Saturday, Sept. 20 and at home against Hanover University on Wednesday, Sept. 24.