Singer/Actor Finds Her ‘True Self’ at Shenandoah

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Musical Theatre alumna Jesse Hooker ’10, has been cast in many stage roles, but the part she enjoys playing the most is herself. Hooker found her professional niche while attending Shenandoah, making her star shine brighter as both a performer and a person.

“In a business where we play characters all the time, it’s easy to be known for these roles,” explained Hooker. “At Shenandoah, I learned how to be myself and to enjoy who I am as a person.”

Hooker’s performance schedule has taken her across the United States and Canada. After graduation, she performed in Shenandoah Summer Music Theatre’s production of “Showboat.” She performed regional work in Kansas and New Hampshire, then landed a 10-month, national tour role in “Legally Blonde.” When the show ended, she decided to move to New York City, where she auditioned and took classes for a few months. Her new agent cast her in “Company” at the Geva Theatre, and she received an Equity Card in April 2012.

Living from one performance to the next can be very stressful, and waiting in anticipation to see if a part is hers keeps Hooker very anxious, but she stays grounded and true to herself because of what she learned at Shenandoah.

“The casting director sees many people over hours of auditioning. It is my job to focus on just being myself and not this product,” she explained. “I’m just me, and I have what I have to offer. I learned that from Shenandoah.”

Hooker has performed with the USO Show Troupe, an entertainment tradition for more than 70 years. Performing live annually for more than 600,000 troops and family members worldwide and nationally televised audiences, the USO Show Troupe presents top-of-the-line entertainment. Its cast members include performers with extensive Broadway, off-Broadway, film and TV credits. She has traveled from California to Florida, Texas and many bases in Hawaii with this ensemble, and in December, the troupe performed on “The Ellen Show.”

“We perform across the United States, and sometimes overseas, supporting the troops and their families,” said Hooker. “It’s really great, because I get to perform, sing and make people feel good.

Just before the holidays, Hooker finished playing the role of Sarah in “Ragtime” at the Milwaukee Repertory Theater. It was the second opportunity for Hooker to play this role; the first was during her senior year at Shenandoah, where classmate and best friend, Ira Lindberg Harris ’10, played opposite her. The two- year anniversary of Harris’ untimely death occurred on Feb. 27, 2014, so this role was especially important to Hooker.

“Ira and I were best friends,” she explained. “We were inseparable. He was like my twin. Playing this role again was an amazing experience for me. I think Sarah will always remain my favorite role to play.”

In February, a group of alumni, including Hooker, gathered in New York City and organized a Shenandoah Alumni Cabaret to honor Harris and the two-year anniversary of his passing. Alumni, conservatory faculty, current students and community members also made the trip to the Big Apple to remember Harris and support the Ira Lindberg Harris Scholarship Fund. Harris’ parents, Ronn ’72 and Novella West ’75 Harris, also attended the event.“

That’s another reason why Shenandoah is so close to my heart,” said Hooker. “I met someone as wonderful as Ira — and I know so many people at Shenandoah who are as wonderful as he was — so it was the least I could do to give back.”

In December, Hooker again shared her love and gratitude to her alma mater as a guest performer during the 2013 Holiday Gala. She stunned the crowd with her performances of “All I Want for Christmas” and “A Baby Changes Everything.”

“It was truly an honor to come back and sing; I had never been a part of the gala before,” explained Hooker. “It was a beautiful production and a very cool experience.”

Looking to the future, Hooker knows that in whatever role she performs, she wants to make the audience escape from reality and feel what the characters are feeling. This is why, when she was 10 years old, she knew her passion would be to connect with others through performance.

“I’m passionate about telling stories and making people feel things through the characters’ stories,” said Hooker. “I love going on this roller-coaster ride with the audience.”

Posted in Alumni, Alumni, Alumni Profile, Conservatory, Conservatory, Conservatory, Magazine, News, Spotlight, Theatre & Musical Theatre, Theatre and Musical Theatre, Undergraduate Theatre, Undergraduate Theatre |

Camila’s Lemonade Stand

Associate Professor of Marketing Giles Jackson, Ph.D., recently co- published, with friend Brian Cunningham and cousin Lizzy Duncan, the first-ever, entrepreneurial-minded preschool book, “Camila’s Lemonade Stand.” The book was born from the company, My Career Launcher (MCL), co-founded by Jackson (COO) and Cunningham (CEO). The company’s mission, and the goal of the lessons found in “Camila’s Lemonade Stand,” is “to empower children with an entrepreneurial mindset, and help them find and pursue paths where they can use it for the greatest good, i.e., for the benefit of themselves, their families, their communities, their nation and the planet.”

Camila and her friends are the Career Launcher Crew, described by the book as “seven fearless children in search of their futures.” The plot centers around a problem that Camila must solve by starting a business: A fair is in town with a thrilling ferris wheel, but Camila doesn’t have any money to ride it. Through foresight, adaptability and perseverance, she becomes a successful entrepreneur and, in the end, has enough money to ride the ferris wheel with her Career Launcher Crew friends.

“Camila’s Lemonade Stand” is garnering rave reviews among parents and educators and is beginning to receive national publicity. MCL will continue to develop “a full spectrum series of books designed to open the eyes of preschool, kindergarten, elementary, middle school, high school and college students to exciting possibilities that await them,” said Dr. Jackson.

The impetus for this entrepreneurial series of books grew out of Cunningham’s concern over a “crisis of aspiration” within the nation’s educational system. Though Cunningham found great entrepreneurial success later in life, he experienced a lack of guidance and motivation to dream big in the formative years of his education. The founding of MCL is an attempt to address this deficit, beginning with “Camila’s Lemonade Stand.” Jackson said, “We believe, in this age of uncertainty, the best insurance a child can have is an empowering, future-oriented, entrepreneurial mindset.” It is their hope that through these books, educators, parents and grandparents will gain the tools to discuss entrepreneurial themes.

A true collaborative effort, Jackson and Cunningham continue to work with experts in education, literacy and publishing from around the globe. Duncan, living on the outskirts of London, worked as illustrator and also helped in story development. Their team of experts will soon include more Shenandoah faculty members.

The next book in the series will be released in spring 2014, and it will focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics. “Camila’s Lemonade Stand” is available for purchase on Amazon and at Barnes & Noble. 


Posted in Academics, BBA, Business School, Business School, Community, Community, Economics, Entrepreneurship, Faculty, Health Care Management, Magazine, MBA, News, Sport Management, Spotlight |


On April 23, 33 students, both undergraduate and graduate, presented 14 posters at the Shenandoah University Projects & Research (SUpr) Summit. This was an opportunity for students of all majors to share their work, including empirical research, projects, portfolios, presentations and demonstrations (both ongoing and completed projects).

Disciplines represented include: environmental science, exercise science, pharmacy, psychology and public health. The poster sessions, judged by faculty volunteers, provided a chance for students to present their research and receive subjective feedback on their work.

A total of seven awards were given out in the following categories:

• Undergraduate: Kristina Troxel, “A Longitudinal Study of PTSD Predictors in Military Personnel”

• Graduate: William Spires, “Development of an iOS Vancomycin Dosing Application in a Health-Systems Setting”

• Individual Project: Christina Graham, “Facebook Wall: Who’s the Fairest of them All?” andJulie Patterson, “The Social Disconnection: Is Social Media Use Related to Narcissism and Problems with Interpersonal Skills?”

• Group Project: Paula Sorrentino, Kelsey Brewster and Mina Hailemariam, “Beyond the Big House, Making the Transition to Life After Prison”

• Research Proposal: Janisse Tate, Hana Esatu and Simara Abbas, “PEP (Prescription Education Program) Talk”

• Research Project: Ashley Landes, “Ecological Requirements of Rare Plants and their Management Implications for the Abrams Creek Wetlands in Winchester and Frederick County”

Projects were judged by Director of The Center for Teaching and Learning Anne Marchant, Ph.D.; Adjunct Assistant Professor of English Rachel Hammond, M.A.; Assistant Professor of Athletic Training Kim Pritchard, Ph.D.; and Assistant Professor of Psychology Scott King, Ph.D. (non-psychology projects only).

“The judges were all very impressed with the high quality of student work and their professional posters and presentations,” said Dr. Marchant. “So, choosing award winners was very difficult. It was especially exciting to see students doing not only interesting work, but also important work. In many cases, these projects embodied the Shenandoah values of citizenship and community engagement. Several projects included the development of apps.”

The SUpr Summit is the brainchild of Assistant Professor of Psychology Mark Chan, Ph.D., with support from the Center for Teaching and Learning. Want to see more? Watch this video about yesterday’s event.

Posted in Announcements |


Soon-to-be-graduates and their families are invited to enjoy music, entertainment, dinner and beverages – including beer for individuals 21 and over – at Grad Bash on Friday, May 9. Grad Bash is in the Brandt Student Center Ferrari Room and Food Court following Commencement rehearsal.

It’s free, but students must RSVP for themselves and their family members by 5 p.m. April 28. Use this form to RSVP: Grad Bash 2014 Reservation.

Grad Bash is hosted by the Office of Student Engagement and the Student Government Association. For more information, contact SGA member and Grad Bash event organizer Monika Debski at

Posted in Announcements |


Parking lots on Shenandoah University campuses include reserved spaces for guests and friends of the university as well as for a few specific members of the administration and faculty. While some signs offer specific information, others simply say “Reserved.”

Whether or not a “Reserved” sign specifies for whom and when the space is reserved, these spaces are not available for general parking. The Department of Public Safety (DPS) maintains a daily roster of visitors for whom reserved parking spaces have been promised, and DPS monitors reserved parking spaces for violations. Unauthorized parking in a reserved parking space results in a parking ticket; the vehicle is towed after the third violation.

Respect “Reserved” parking spaces. If you haven’t been told a “Reserved” space is for you, don’t park in it. For more information, visit DPS on the ground floor of the Wilkins Building (overlooking the big SU), call 540/665-4614 or write

Posted in Announcements |

Shenandoah Honors Faculty Retirees

This spring, the university community honors four highly respected, long-term faculty members as they prepare for retirement. Professor of Music (Theory) Donald Black, M.F.A., M.A.; Director of Church Music and Professor of Music (Organ, Harpsichord) Steven Cooksey, Ph.D.; Professor of Religion and Philosophy John Copenhaver, Ph.D.; and Professor of Political Science William Shendow, Ph.D., each leave an invaluable legacy of inspiration and academic excellence — not only for Shenandoah’s students, but for the Winchester community and their respective academic fields of study.


Professor of Music (Theory) Donald Black, M.F.A., M.A., has taught at Shenandoah University for 46 years. Throughout his tenure, he has taught most of the courses in music theory, aural skills and conducting. He also taught applied clarinet, and for 20 years conducted the Conservatory Orchestra. Black’s conducting experience at Shenandoah included many of its opera productions, and his wife, Nancy, often played piano for these performances. He conducted several different Shenandoah Ensembles at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as well as other prestigious venues. Known as “Mr. Shenandoah” in the conservatory, he has served as teacher and mentor to many successful performers, conductors and teachers. 


Professor of Religion and Philosophy John Copenhaver, Ph.D., has spent his entire 27-year teaching career at Shenandoah University. In 1992, he was honored with an Exemplary Teaching Award by the General Board of Higher Education of the United Methodist Church. In 1999, he developed and taught a course in collaboration with colleagues in biology and psychology, for which he won an award from the Templeton Foundation. Last year, Dr. Copenhaver was honored for his leadership, service and advocacy of diversity in international programs. He served as chair of the Department of Religion and Philosophy for 17 years. During that time, he oversaw development of the Christian Leadership Program and the subsequent JustFaith Christian Leadership Program with Professor of Religion Barry Penn-Hollar, Ph.D. He has served as a catalyst for interfaith understanding and cooperation, most notably as president of the Valley Interfaith Council since 2001. “Throughout his career, he has opened students’ minds to the religions of the world, modeling for them an attitude of deep respect and appreciation for all cultures and peoples,” said College of Arts & Sciences Dean Calvin Allen, Ph.D. 



Director of Church Music and Professor of Music (Organ, Harpsichord) Steven Cooksey, Ph.D., came to Shenandoah in 1972. He was responsible for overseeing the installation of the pipe organ in the Goodson Chapel/Recital Hall, and founded Shenandoah’s Bach Handel Festival which continues as one of the conservatory’s finest music festivals supported by the community. He also founded the Summer Church Music Institute. During his tenure, Dr. Cooksey designed and taught all courses in church music, and instructed music history, music literature and conducting for both undergraduate and graduate levels. He is known by his students as a “gentle giant” — always gracious, respectful, humble and unselfish. Cooksey is known for his commitment to his students, always willing to give hours of extra time to help them achieve their goals. 



Professor of Political Science William Shendow, Ph.D., in his role as professor and community service advocate since 1997, helped to create and administer a public administration/political science major and establish the Marsh Institute for Government and Public Policy. Through the former Marsh Institute (known today as the Center for Public Service and Scholarship), Dr. Shendow inspired and informed students as well as the local community about public affairs and the political process. The institute set up programs like the Kids’ Voting program, academic discussions on global politics through the International Topics Forum and summer programs on the importance of public policy for high school students. During his tenure, Shendow devoted his time and talent to educating his students and the local community. Through the creation of a political science major, Shendow conveyed his knowledge of the political process and its importance in our lives. He believed that by educating citizens to the political process, our world could become a better place. His legacy can be found in the students who participated in his classes and became better-educated citizens. 

Posted in Academic Affairs, Academics, Arts & Sciences, Arts & Sciences, campus community, Church Music, Church Music, Church Music, Conservatory, Conservatory, Conservatory, Deans and Directors, Faculty, Graduate Music, Magazine, News, Philosophy and Religion, Political Science, Spotlight |


Junior Jaclyn Mohlmann completed her participation in the 120th running of the Penn Relays on April 23, with a fourth place finish in the heptathlon.

Competing in a strong wind that negatively affected the javelin results, Mohlmann had 1781 points on day two of the two-day, seven-event competition.

Her top score on day two came in the 800 meters, where her 2:25.86 was good for 746 points, and she added 601 in the long jump and another 434 in the javelin.

Her 4364 total was just off of her school record 4403 set last spring at Ohio Wesleyan.

Mohlmann is up again next week at the Lynchburg Multis.

The men’s 4 x 100 meter relay team competes at Penn on Friday, April 25. Read more here.

Posted in Announcements |

Meet Your Alumni Board Member – Kathy Spahr Robinson ’74

“Some of the best years I’ve had in my life were spent at Shenandoah,” describes Kathy Spahr Robinson ’74, one of SU’s newest Alumni Board members. “I felt at home even before receiving the acceptance letter. I was lucky enough to spend four years surrounded by professors and fellow students who love music every bit as much as I do. To study what you love really is a reward itself. I feel that I need to give back to Shenandoah for all that it has given me.”

After earning a Bachelor of Music degree from SU in 1974, Robinson worked as a substitute teacher for a few years in hopes that it would lead to a permanent teaching position. “During that time, budgets were small and teaching positions in the arts were very few. After a few years it became evident that I needed something more permanent and I also realized that I no longer felt drawn to teaching so it was time to try other things,” she says.

Next, Robinson worked in banking for several years but didn’t feel challenged. “I was given the opportunity to go to work for the federal government (Army) and that turned out to be a wise decision,” Robinson explains. She started in finance and accounting but received an internship within one year. For about eight years she was a program analyst and performed various types of cost and management analyses. “It was in this position that I discovered that I liked working with numbers almost as much as I enjoy making music. Due to a downsizing, I moved to a position in contracting which gave me an opportunity to experience how the government obtains the goods and services it needs,” she says

During the early 1990s Robinson, once again, adjusted her career goals due to a downsizing, which resulted in relocation to another Army post in nearby Frederick, MD.  “I obtained a position as a management analyst and my responsibility was to perform analyses of our different programs to ensure that we were making effective and efficient use of the funding we received.” Since that time, Robinson has held positions in the contracting field with both the Navy and the Army. “I currently supervise a team of 12 people and we award grants to universities and small companies to perform medical research. Our grants fund research in areas such as multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury, prostate cancer and any medical conditions that can result from a battlefield experience.”

Robinson explains one of the most rewarding experiences of her profession: “I was part of a team comprised of government staff and the local power company that worked to upgrade the power grid on my installation, Fort Detrick. There were thousands of upgrades to electrical systems throughout the installation that did not require any outlay of funds from the Army. The power company will receive payment for those upgrades through the power savings over the next 20 years.” 

Robinson’s team awards grants to universities and companies throughout the world for medical research. “It is a thrill to attend scientific meetings and meet with people who have had those diseases and hear that the research we fund is making a difference in people’s lives. For several years, we’ve funded research for the detection and treatment of prostate cancer. Two new drugs have entered the marketplace within the last three years that are helping to extend and improve the lives of men with prostate cancer. The research that we fund for treatment of battle injuries is changing the way we treat those injuries and saving lives that might have been lost,” she says. Robinson’s work involves occasional travel to different parts of the country. Her favorite work-related destination is San Diego, Calif. She is looking forward to an upcoming trip to Tbilisi in the Republic of Georgia.

Robinson was fortunate to be selected for a position with the federal government that allowed her to try different things. “I discovered that I really enjoyed the “business” of government, especially the analysis of programs and numbers. Due to a downsizing, I was given the opportunity to do contracting for the government. I found that I enjoyed working as part of a team to reach a goal and the challenges that the position brings.”

Shenandoah helped Robinson reach her career goals because she learned skills that were necessary to succeed. “I learned that hard work and perseverance bring rewards. I learned that things are usually easier if you work as a team. I once had a supervisor who told me he preferred to work with employees with college degrees because they knew how to think independently, dedicate themselves to a difficult project and knew how to successfully function in a team environment. I think I have those skills because of what I learned at Shenandoah.” 

Robinson explains what she is looking forward to most at SU this year. “This is a reunion year for me! I haven’t seen many of my classmates since our last reunion and I’m looking forward to seeing old friends. The Conservatory Alumni Reunion is scheduled for March 21 and 22 so it will be great to see members of other classes at that event. I haven’t been able to attend many of the performances over the years but now that my children are grown, I hope to be able to visit more often.”

Some of Robinson’s fondest memories at Shenandoah include choir tour, studying with voice instructor, Jeri Ann Bond, whom she describes as “awesome,” being in the musicals and co-chairing the yearbook one year. “I really enjoyed being part of SAI and the friendships.”

In her free time, Robinson enjoys singing with the Hagerstown Choral Arts. She is also the organization’s grant writer. The group is led by Shenandoah alumnus, Gregory Shook ’01. Another alumnus and fellow Alumni Board member, Bob Crawford ’56, also sings with the group. Robinson also enjoys crafts such as cross stitch, needlepoint, knitting and jewelry-making. She also loves trips to the beach.

Robinson’s husband, Rick, is a district sales coordinator with a national insurance company. They are the proud parents of three daughters, Andrea, Whitney and Victoria. Andrea is an addictions counselor who is working on a master’s degree in psychology. Whitney is doing stem cell research at a research facility in Frederick, Md. Victoria, who joined the U.S. Navy last spring, will be stationed near Los Angeles. “I am definitely planning to visit her (Victoria) many times in the coming four years. Whitney is expecting a baby in May so we’re preparing to be grandparents again.”

Posted in Alumni Profile, Conservatory, Undergraduate Music |

Scrutinizing ‘Quality’ – Obama Administration Proposes New College Ratings System

In his 2014 State of the Union Address in January, President Barack Obama reaffirmed his intention to hold U.S. colleges and universities accountable for quality and affordability. As a result, higher education institutions can expect more media dialogue and governmental scrutiny
in the months to come. In an effort to clarify the issues, President Tracy Fitzsimmons, Ph.D., offers her perspective on the college ratings system proposed by the Obama Administration. Dr. Fitzsimmons currently serves as chair of the board of directors of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU). 

Q: What are the facets of the federal government’s proposed college ratings system? 

A: President Obama recently proposed a new college ratings system — set to be released before the 2015-16 academic year. According to the White House, the ratings system will “help students compare the value offered by colleges and encourage colleges to improve.” The ratings system is expected to focus upon such measures as percentage of students receiving Pell Grants; average tuition, scholarships and loan debt; graduation and transfer rates; graduate earnings and advanced degrees of college graduates. President Obama also indicated he will seek legislation to allocate federal financial aid based on the ratings system by the year 2018. According to the White House, “Students can continue to choose whichever college they want, but taxpayer dollars will be steered toward high-performing colleges that provide the best value.” 

Q: How would a system like this affect higher education in the United States? 

A: A federal ratings system could penalize those academic institutions and programs that graduate students into professions such as teaching and nonprofit work — professions that inherently focus less on earning potential, but have an untold impact on society. Higher education is not about earning potential. It is about the quality of an education a student receives. The focus of the conversation must be rooted in quality. If we stray from that foundation, we run the risk of defining an education solely through the lens of economics instead of academics. 

Q: What types of issues would be created by this rating system? 

A: If a federal ratings system were put in place, perverse incentives would be created. College presidents and deans could be forced to make value decisions about the types of students they admit — and how they spend their money based upon trying to “game” the system and increase their rating, when in reality, all of our key decisions should be driven by what is best for student learning. The beauty of higher education in the United States is that each of our campuses is different. Each offers a unique and rewarding experience for students. Boiling those attributes down to a letter grade or a stamp anywhere between “excellent” and “poor” is a great disservice to all. Being educated broadly helps people become better citizens. 

Q: What are you hearing from other college and university presidents on this issue? 

A:  I, along with many other presidents, feel the federal government is overstepping its bounds and becoming far too involved in higher education. We believe rating higher education institutions is not the role of the federal government. The proposed college ratings system is purported to be designed to contain the cost of tuition and boost the rate of graduation at colleges and universities throughout the nation. It should not be the role of the federal government to define what outcomes should be important to each family nor how to assess academic quality. The latter is the role of educators, who have already set the bar at a critically high level for each other through peer review and accreditation. 

Q: Where does accreditation fit into this discussion? 

A: We believe peer review through accreditation is better than government review, and responsibility for measuring and rating quality should remain in the hands of peer reviewers, who are better qualified and equipped to hold institutions to a higher standard. The U.S. higher education system is the strongest system in the world in terms of quality, interaction between students and professors, depth of research and a number of other factors. That is, in part, because we have a peer-review system of accreditation. We hold each other accountable, and there is no one who will push harder on quality in education. Instead of creating a new system driven by the federal government, we should put our efforts behind refining a peer-review system that has shown itself to be effective in continually improving higher education institutions. 

What is NAICU? 

The National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU) serves as the unified national voice of private nonprofit higher education. Since 1976, the association has represented this subset of American colleges and universities on policy issues with the federal government, such as those affecting student aid, taxation and government regulation. Today, through new communication technologies, an improved governance structure and increased member participation, NAICU has become an even more effective and respected participant in the political process.

The NAICU staff meets with policymakers, tracks campus trends, conducts research, analyzes higher education issues, publishes information, helps coordinate state-level activities and advises members of legislative and regulatory developments with potential impact on their institutions. 

Q: What would a federally regulated ratings system mean for Shenandoah University? 

A: No matter what happens with this college ratings system, Shenandoah University will continue to do what it has always done — focus on providing the best education and the most positive college experience to each and every one of our students. We will continue to make strides in our retention and graduation rates. We will guide students to find their academic passion and relentlessly pursue it. We will connect with students, over and over again, to keep them on the path to graduation. And, we will always strive to reach a bar that is higher than the federal government could ever hope to set. 

Q: Where do we go from here? 

A: This story is still developing. There are many unknowns, but one thing is for certain — if the quality issue isn’t broken, don’t try and fix it. If the problem is cost, students will simply not go to the more expensive colleges if they can’t afford it and don’t see value in it. But they’re still coming to college, because in the end, a student who has earned his or her bachelor’s degree will make $650,000 more over 40 years than someone with a high school degree.* We are committed to finding ways to work with the Department of Education to benefit students across the country, but we will continue to recognize that students and their parents choose colleges based upon a myriad of measurable and immeasurable factors that cannot possibly be boiled down to one simple ratings system. 

In addition, NAICU has spearheaded several major public initiatives, such as the University & College Accountability Network (U-CAN), offering prospective students and their families concise and comparable information on private, nonprofit colleges and universities; the Student Aid Alliance, an ambitious effort to enhance funding for existing student aid programs; and the nonpartisan National Campus Voter Registration Project that, in every federal election, helps all colleges and universities to conduct both voter education, registration and participation programs.

With more than 1,000 members nationwide, NAICU reflects the diversity of private, nonprofit higher education in the United States. Members include traditional liberal arts colleges, major research universities, church- and faith- related institutions, historically black colleges and universities, women’s colleges, performing and visual arts institutions, two-year colleges, and schools of law, medicine, engineering, business and other professions. NAICU is committed to celebrating and protecting this diversity of the nation’s private colleges and universities. 

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The No. 14/18 Shenandoah University begins its quest for a first-ever ODAC baseball title Thursday, April 24, at 11 a.m. when it takes on sixth-seeded Hampden-Sydney in the opening game of the tournament.

The Hornets come into their second-ever ODAC tourney as the No. 1 seed after finishing the conference slate with a 17-3 mark.

Shenandoah swept H-SC this season, winning 15-12 and 12-5 in a double dip at Hampden-Sydney on March 15.

That second victory was also the 300th of skipper Kevin Anderson‘s Shenandoah University career.

Sophomore Darrell Thompson, who co-leads the ODAC with eight wins this spring, is expected to be the Hornets starter.

Thompson started game two of that March 15 doubleheader earned the win after allowing five runs (four earned) on 10 hits and one walk while striking out four in 7.0 innings of work.

Hunter Lewis, who like Thompson has eight overall wins this season, could get the start for the Tigers. Lewis, a senior, is 8-2 with 63 strikeouts and just 11 walks in 67.0 innings pitched.

H-SC is fourth in the league in batting average (to Shenandoah’s first) with a .331 average.

The Tigers, with a 27-13 overall record, lead the league in hits, 472, and doubles, 92.

Lewis is also their top hitter with a .383 average. He plays third base when he is not on the mound.

Shenandoah comes into the tournament hitting .359 as a club and sees all nine regular starters hitting at least .321.

In conference play, Shenandoah is hitting .373 with the lowest batting average in its starting lineup .333.

Thursday’s game will be the first-ever baseball tournament matchup between the two programs.

Posted in Announcements |