TVCC Lady Cards headed to national tournament

Lady Cards softballBy Benny Rogers/TVCC Sports Information

Utah bound!

The Lady Cardinals made school history Saturday, clinching the school’s first-ever national tournament berth with a third straight win in the Region XIV Tournament in Corsicana.

Coach Ashley Johnston’s squad defeated eighth-ranked Galveston (8-2), Blinn (3-2) and Paris (7-5) to punch a ticket to St. George, Utah for the national tournament May 15-18.

The Lady Cardinals went on to finish second in the tournament, falling twice to Paris in the championship games. Paris was an 8-2 winner in the first game and took a 5-4 nine-inning decision in the second.

The Lady Cardinals will carry a 33-25 record to the national tournament.

National tournament pairings will be announced this weekend after all regional tournament play has concluded.

Other schools joining the Lady Cardinals and Paris as qualifiers to this point are Georgia Perimeter College, Pitt Community College (North Carolina), Pima Community College (Arizona), Santa Fe College (Florida) and Chipola College (Florida).

Lady Cards play for national tournament berth

(TVCC COURTESY PHOTO)
(TVCC COURTESY PHOTO)

The Trinity Valley Community College Lady Cardinals had never won a tournament game going into this week’s Region XIV Softball Tournament.

Now they’ve won two.

Friday, the Lady Cards notched a 3-2 win over Blinn in the second round after knocking off nationally-ranked Galveston in the first round.

Today, TVCC will play Paris at 3 p.m. in Corsicana at Navarro College.

The winner of the game earns a national tournament berth. The TVCC-Paris loser falls into the consolation bracket semifinals Sunday with another chance to reach the championship game and earn a national tournament berth.

The top two teams advance to the national tournament May 15-18 in St. George, Utah.

Lady Cards get historic win

The Trinity Valley Community College Lady Cardinals celebrate after defeating nationally-ranked Galveston Community College Thursday. (COURTESY PHOTO)
The Trinity Valley Community College Lady Cardinals celebrate after defeating nationally-ranked Galveston Community College Thursday. (COURTESY PHOTO)

By Benny Rogers/TVCC Sports Information

How ‘bout those Lady Cardinals!

They played bracket buster in the cold, gusting north wind and mist Thursday in the opening round of the Region XIV Conference in Corsicana. The Lady Cardinals, the No. 4 East seed, pulled off a shocker with a 5-2 win against Galveston, the No. 1 South seed and the nation’s eighth-ranked team.

Coach Ashley Johnston’s squad, now 31-23, used a four-run fourth inning to fuel the college’s first-ever regional tournament win and the biggest win in the history of the softball program. The Lady Cardinals were hitless through the first three innings.

Galveston, which defeated the Lady Cardinals 8-0 the first weekend in March, dropped to 42-16.

The Lady Cardinals are scheduled to return to action today against Blinn (32-18). Blinn was a 12-2 winner against the Lady Cardinals in March.

With a win against Blinn, the Lady Cardinals would play at 3 p.m. Saturday against the Paris-Northeast winner. With a loss, they would play at 10 a.m. Saturday against the Alvin-San Jacinto winner.

In Thursday’s other games in the opening round, it was: Northeast 5, San Jacinto 0; Blinn 9, Navarro 1 and Paris 7, Alvin 6.

The top two teams in the tournament qualify for the national tournament May 15-18 in St. George, Utah.

TVCC sets freshman orientation

By Jennifer Hannigan/TVCC Public Information

Freshman orientation has been a tradition at Trinity Valley Community College for decades. But this year, the organizers are stepping out of the box and revamping the event.

“We have had successful orientations for years, but we wanted to offer students an improved experience and a more in-depth look at the great things available at TVCC,” said Shelia Jones, the college’s assistant registrar.

Freshman orientation allows students who are taking a full schedule of classes for the first time to have help during their first registration. Students attending the event are walked through the registration process, are given a campus tour and get to meet key campus personnel before the school year begins.

In September 2012, said Jones, the college put together a group to revamp the orientation process that was held on the Athens campus. The first step the orientation committee took toward making changes was to move the sessions to Saturdays.

“We felt it was important to give parents the chance to come,” said Jones. “Not all students will bring a parent, but we wanted to give our incoming freshman that option.”

The college will host three orientation days, on June 29, July 20 and Aug 10.

During the orientation, students and parents will spend only part of the day together. When students are learning about key pieces of college life such as financial aid and campus police, parents will be given a chance to tour the campus and meet key city and college personnel.

After a joint lunch, students will be walked through the registration process while parents will be presented much of the information given to the students before lunch. Parents will have the chance not only to hear about the basics of navigating life at TVCC, but to also ask questions of TVCC personnel from a variety of areas.

“We wanted to show students how to go through the registration process online, a process they will complete in future semesters on their own” said Jones. “Students register using our Cardinal Connection. Cardinal Connection is a big part of our students’ lives because it’s involved in online classes, finding out grades at the end of each semester, and even applying for graduation. So they use that portal from beginning to end.

“We thought that while students were learning that process, it would be great for parents to have a chance to gather more in-depth information about important areas such as financial aid, campus safety and tutoring services.”

Then, after students are registered and parents are informed, the college will host a “big top” style event in the college pavilion.

College organizations and departments will have booths, games and refreshments, giving students the chance to see the different aspects of life at TVCC.

“This is an opportunity for departments to showcase what they have to offer and to allow students and parents to find out more about life here at TVCC,” said Jones.

Cost for orientation on the Athens campus is $35 per student and $5 for each additional family member.

The TVCC Palestine and Terrell campuses host their own orientation sessions each summer. On the Palestine campus, orientation is set for Tuesday, Aug. 6. On the Terrell campus, orientation will be held Aug. 6 and Tuesday, Aug. 13.

Students must register in advance for orientation and provide proof that they have completed all tests necessary to enter college in Texas.

To register for orientation on any campus, call 903-675-6200 and ask for Jones, Becca Garner or Heather Hutchison.

Students in Palestine can also call 903-729-0256 and students in Terrell can call 972-563-9573 to register for orientation.

Big finish for TVCC rodeo team

Trinity Valley Community College’ Austin Gross turns in an 82-point ride in the Wharton Junior College Rodeo this past weekend. Gross finished second in the event and earned a No. 3 ranking in Southern Region, earning him a trip to the College National Finals Rodeo in Casper, Wyo., in June. Also representing TVCC at the event will be Wesceslao “Lightning” Aguilera and Kolby Miller. (COURTESY PHOTO)
Trinity Valley Community College’ Austin Gross turns in an 82-point ride in the Wharton Junior College Rodeo this past weekend. Gross finished second in the event and earned a No. 3 ranking in Southern Region, earning him a trip to the College National Finals Rodeo in Casper, Wyo., in June. Also representing TVCC at the event will be Wesceslao “Lightning” Aguilera and Kolby Miller. (COURTESY PHOTO)

By Benny Rogers/TVCC Sports Information

It was a big finish for the Trinity Valley Community College rodeo team in the final Southern Region event of the year this past weekend in Wharton.

Austin Gross, a freshman from Arcadia, Fla., turned in an 82-point ride to finish second in the competition. The ride also gave Gross a third-place finish in the regional standings, earning him a trip to the College National Finals Rodeo (CNFR) in Casper, Wyo., in June.

Gross will join freshmen Wesceslao “Lightning” Aguilera of Athens and Kolby Miller of Alba at the CNFR. Aguilera and Miller placed seventh in team roping at the Wharton event, but finished ranked No. 1 in the Southern Region to punch their CNFR ticket.

“Considering that these contestants must compete against students from four-year universities at each of these rodeos to finish at the top is quite an accomplishment,” said TVCC rodeo coach Brent Bratton. “I am extremely proud of how our team members worked to stay in those top positions. It was a fight until the end and they did what they needed to do to win.

“We are confident for great things at the College National Finals and hoping to come home with several national champions. The team is so thankful to the supporters in the community. Without them and the support from the administration, they would not be able to live out their dreams.”

TVCC had three other team members finish in the Top 10 of the Southern Region rankings: Justus Whitcher, 8th, steer wrestling; Kacey Kirby, 9th, barrel racing; Garrett Jones, 10th, bareback.