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Coaches' Blog

EU coaches share the inside scoop on Crusader sports.

The views expressed in blogs are the opinion of the individual blogger and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Evangel University.

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Coach
Date: 2/14/2014

Series at William's Baptist Cancelled

Our series against William's Baptist this weekend has been cancelled due to wet playing conditions. We will try again this coming Tuesday at College of the Ozarks.

Brenton Illum Blogger: Brenton Illum, Head Football Coach
Date: 11/11/2013

Players of the Week vs Peru State

Our men won a hard-fought battle on the road this past week at #13 ranked Peru State in Nebraska. Lots of guys put in good work and our players of the week are as follows:

O - Jesse Vaughn, WR and Beau Mabe, OL

D - Denzel Billy, DB and Ell C Teycer, DL

ST - Brett Diers, QB

Big Hit - Austin Ausbury, OL and Beau Mabe, OL

Scout O - JT Dorris, TE

Scout D - Josh Evans, LB

Next week we finish the season with a home contest against a 9-1 Benedictine team. Make plans to be there and cheer on the Crusaders!!

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Coach
Date: 11/4/2013

Fall Workouts

Fall practices are over and the workout portion of the year is now in full swing. Players get up at 6:00 AM on Mondays, Wednedays, and Fridays to take part in our lifting program. Tuesdays and Thursdays are spent working on conditioning, speed training, and agility drills. This part of the year is a great time for players to bond together as a team and prepare their bodies for the spring baseball season.

Brenton Illum Blogger: Brenton Illum, Head Football Coach
Date: 10/28/2013

Players of the Week vs Graceland U.

5 takeaways in the second half led to an exciting home win this Saturday as we beat Graceland 38-24. Our players of the week are:

O - Jesse Vaughn (9 catches for 143yards and 3 touchdowns)

D - Carlen Sims, DL and Cam Bruffett, DB. Cam had his 14th career interception which ties him for 2nd place all time at Evangel.

Special Teams - Mitch McHenry and Chase Nugent for pulling of a huge play on a fake field goal, setting up our first touchdown.

Big Hit - Corey Woods, DL, had several big hits in the game.

Scout O - Corey Murphy, freshman TE.

Scout D - Josh Carlton, freshman OL.

We head to Baker University this week to play another top-10 team in the NAIA. We are steadily getting healthier and looking forward to the game!

Brenton Illum Blogger: Brenton Illum, Head Football Coach
Date: 10/21/2013

Players of the week

I missed CMU game, so here's some info to catch you all up:

CMU Game Players of the Week:

O - Shawn Hebert, WR

D - Corey Woods, DL

ST - Shawn Hebert, WR

Big Hit - Devon Overall (LB) and Donte Young (DB)

Scout O - Josh Evans, LB

Scout D - Rudy Beltran, DB

This last Saturday we lost a hard fought game vs the #6 team in the NAIA. We were up 7-0 at half, but couldn't hold them off as they won their 18th straight conference game. Our players of the week were:

O - Brock West, RB. (Played perfect assignment football)

D - Ell C Teycer, DL. (3 tackles for loss)

ST - Shawn Hebert, WR. (Lots of contribution to our special teams)

Big Hit - Ell C Teycer, DL.

Scout O - Luke Kantola, LB.

Scout D - Darryl Calhoun, DL.

We will be back home this Saturday to face Graceland University at 1:30pm. Plan to be there!!!

Brenton Illum Blogger: Brenton Illum, Head Football Coach
Date: 9/30/2013

Players of the Week vs MidAmerica Nazarene

We lost a tough game to a very good team last Saturday, but there were still some outstanding individual performances on our squad. Our players of the week are:

Offense - Beau Mabe, Offensive Line

Defense - Kenney Bennett, Linebacker and Cephas Mitchell, Defensive End

Special Teams - Jesse Vaughn for his kickoff returns

Big Hits - Michael Bowman (WR) and Kenney Bennett (LB)

Scout O - Darryl Calhoun, freshman D-Lineman

Scout D - Corey Murphy, freshman Tight End

Homecoming is this weekend! We hope to see you there.

-Coach Illum

Brenton Illum Blogger: Brenton Illum, Head Football Coach
Date: 9/23/2013

Players of the week vs KWU and Avila

I missed week one on the blog, but here are our players of the week so far. Their pictures are posted in the Ashcroft Center on our weekly board.

Vs. Kansas Wesleyan:

Offense - Jesse Vaughn, wide receiver (3 TD's)

Defense - Kenney Bennett, linebacker (led in tackles, sacks, tfl's)

Special Teams - Stone Phelps, punter (39yd avg)

Big Hits - Antonio Green (OL), Cam Bruffet (DB)

Scout O - Brandon Staley, wide receiver

Scout D - Josh Evans, linebacker

Vs Avila University:

Offense - Andrew Brimhall, QB (207 passing, 112 rushing)

Defense - Kenney Bennett, linebacker (led in tfl's)

Special Teams - Andre Smith, placekicker (scored 11 points)

Big Hits - Kelvin Coleman (RB), Zach Reed (LB), Kenney Bennett (LB)

Scout O - Jacobi Perry, running back

Scout D - Ell C. Teycer, defensive line

Our guys are giving tremendous effort to this program and this week we will finally get to play in front of our home crowd! Join us on Saturday night at 6pm at JFK stadium!

-Coach Illum

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Coach
Date: 8/20/2013

2013 Season Recap

I am a little late getting around to this, but I wanted to give a recap of a very successful 2013 season.

First of all, the 2013 team set a new school record for wins. We finished with a record of 32-19 which put us into the conference tournament for the second year in a row and for the fourth time in the last 5 years. There were also many individual season and career records set as well as team records.

Individuals receiving All-HAAC recognition were Blake McKnight (1st Team), Brandon Cobb (2nd Team), Jeff Cullen (Honorable Mention), Christian Maciel (Honorable Mention), Matt Myers (Honorable Mention), and Jacob Childers (Gold Glove Left Fielder).

Blake McKnight also received Academic All-American honors for the second time and became the first baseball All-American since 2000.

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Coach
Date: 8/14/2013

Blake McKnight Drafted

It has been a while since I have posted so I thought I would start with the most exciting news first. It you have not heard, Blake McKnight became the first Crusader to be drafted in program history. He was taken in the 38th round by the St. Louis Cardinals.

Right now he is on the Cardinals rookie league team in Johnson City, TN. Blake has done very well and leads all starting pitchers on the team with a 2.44 ERA. I was able to go and see Blake pitch last week and he threw a great game going 6 2/3 and only giving up one run and striking out 7.

Congrats Blake!...hope to see you with the Springfield Cardinals in a few years!

Brenton Illum Blogger: Brenton Illum, Head Football Coach
Date: 4/6/2013

Spring practices have begun!

This offseason has been an interesting one. After the best season on the field at Evangel in 7 years we have invested back into the players here with an extensive strength and conditioning program. Our team has made great progress in the weight room, but some of the best strides we've made have been in character development.

We have used Tim Elmore's book The Habitudes and worked through a chapter each week in small groups and intentional conversations. Each Tuesday we've spent an hour as a team finding ways to apply the principles to our lives and our team. It's been rewarding to watch our guys as they have grown individually and collectively!

We are now one week into spring practices and our guys have taken advantage of the opportunity to learn the new schemes and grow. Spring is a great time to really teach the details of our schemes to our players as well as working on the fundamentals of the game without having to gameplan for a specific opponent.

We are allowed 15 full practices over 4 weeks that will culminate with our spring game on April 26th. Our practices are open so come on out!

-Coach Illum

Jerry Breaux Blogger: Jerry Breaux, Head Softball Coach
Date: 2/25/2013

2013 Season

Season has started and we're off and running. So far so good, team is playing very well with a fast start of 5-0. The ideal season is "start fast" and "finish strong"....so we have one part of the equation working. We are hitting the ball very well with 36 runs scored in 5 games. We are 'stinging' it and hopefully can keep this up. Some early season offensive highlights are sophomore Bethany Bacon of Kirkland, Washington hitting .430 with 2 home runs and 7 RBI's leading the team. Senior shortstop Marriana Nelson of Eden Prairie, Minnesota hitting .500 with 1 HR and 6 RBI's. Freshman Brittany Arnold of Canton, Texas with 3 HR's and 5 RBI's. Others who are also hitting the ball very well are senior Kari Tall-Domingos of Sacramento, California, junior Shelby Hoffman of Apple Valley, California, sophomore Jessica Jett of Fontana, California, freshman Katie Tollefson of Simi Valley, California. Complimenting the offense is our pitching staff 1-2 punch of senior Lenzie Boring of Humboldt, Kansas and junior Brooke Brenton of Lebanon, Missouri. Lenzie is 3-0 while Brooke is 2-0. Both are experienced pitchers who will lead the way for us in the circle. They will be supported by three other arms in freshman Mikaela Scott of Powder Springs, Georgia, sophomore Jasmine Godwin of Moberly, Missouri and freshman Desley Jett of West Plains, Missouri. Every week during the course of the season on Monday we will announce our Players-Pitcher of the Week for games played the previous week. The following players have been selected for our first week of games as having outstanding games last week:

1. Pitcher of the Week - senior Lenzie Boring of Kansas

2. Offensive Player of the Week - sophomore Bethany Bacon of Washington

3. Defensive Player of the Week - junior Jill Boeschen of Illinois

4. Bulldog (most tenacious competitor) Player of the Week - senior Marriana Nelson of Minnesota

5. Crusader (teammate) Player of the Week - freshman Desley Jett of Missouri

Congrats to these players on an outstanding first week of games. our next game was scheduled for Wednesday Feb. 27 but has been postponed and rescheduled due to the weather. We are now preparing and planning for our spring break trip and week in Louisiana and Texas. Will blog again on Monday March 11 after we return from our week long trip. Adios till then.

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Coach
Date: 2/18/2013

Pitching Record In Sight

This last win for Blake McKnight had some historical significance for him and the Evangel Baseball program. The 7-0 win for Blake was his 23rd career win. That tied the career record held by Marty Callison (1972-75) and Jim Jenkins (1973-76).

Blake will have a chance to break the record this weekend when he will start this Saturday against St. Gregory's University.

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Coach
Date: 2/18/2013

Baseball News

After receiving two forfeit wins from last Tuesday, and going 3-0 against Mid-America Christian this past weekend, the baseball team's overall record stands at 9-1.

Our bats started to come alive in the three win with scores of 7-0, 8-0, and 13-7. We had great pitching performances with Blake McKnight, Matt Myers, and Sam Garrison picking up the three wins.

This coming weekend will be a great test for us. We will travel back down to OKC and play OK Baptist. They are the #9 team in the nation and we are really looking forward to the challege.

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Start
Date: 2/13/2013

Good start

The 2013 version of the Evangel Baseball program has gotten off to a solid start. After getting two wins at William's Baptist, we were able to come home and take 2 out of 3 from Central Christian.

In game one, Koby Gaddis and Sam Garrison teamed up on the mound to lead us to a 4-1 win. Nathan Jones had 2 RBI's and Christian Maciel had 3 hits to lead the offensive attack.

In game two, Blake McKnight was dominate on the mound and picked up a 9-2 win. This win pulled Blake to within one win of tying the all-time wins mark at Evangel. The win was Blake's 22nd win and the record is 23. Darin Francis hit a grand slam in the first inning and Jeff Cullen had 4 hits to pace the Crusaders offensively.

In the final game of the 3 game set, Matt Myers threw a great game only giving up one earned run. But the EU offense went cold and was shut-out on the scoreboard, only mustering 5 total hits (4 of those came off the bats of Jeff Cullen and Christian Maciel).

The team now travels to Oklahoma City this weekend for a 4 game series against Mid-America Christian.

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Coach
Date: 2/7/2013

Season Begins

We opened up the season at William's Baptist College on Tuesday and came away with two wins. Great way to start the year. We now start a three game series against Central Christian tomorrow. We will play a 9 inning game on Friday and a doulbe header on Saturday. Look forward to opening up at home.

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Coach
Date: 1/15/2013

More Baseball Recruits

The baseball program is enjoying one of its most successful early signing periods in recent history. We have added two more players to our 2014 team this week.

The first commitment is Blake McCarty. Blake will be coming in from one of the most successful high school baseball programs in the nation, Owasso High School in Owasso, OK. Blake will be coming into our program with a focus on the pitching mound. Blake also plays in the outfield as well.

The next commitment is Austin Alfrey. Austin attends Elkhorn High School in Elkhorn, NE. Austin is a catcher and outfielder. Some of Austin's accomplishments include...Eastern Midland Conference 1st Team and All-Nebraska Honorable Mention.

We are very excited to have both of these young men come into our program next year. They are also great character guys and excellent students. We are truly blessed to have them.

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Coach
Date: 1/10/2013

Baseball Signing

We are happy to announce the verbal committment of Deric Link to our baseball program. Deric is a senior at Fair Grove HS and will join our program in the fall of 2013. Deric is a corner INF and pitcher.

As a freshman in 2010, Deric was a 2nd team all-conference performer in the infield. In 2011, Deric earned honors as an honorable mention all-conference infielder and honorable mention all-district DH. As a junior in 2012, Deric made all-conference 1st team infielder and 2nd team all-conference pitcher.

Deric is also a high character young man and a top performer in the classroom as well.

We are excited to have Deric coming into our program and look for some exciting things on and off the field from him the next 4 years.

Jerry Breaux Blogger: Jerry Breaux, Head Softball Coach
Date: 12/11/2012

Fall 2012 Semester Ends

Our fall 2012 semester coming to a close as we head towards Christmas break. The team has been very busy with indoor workouts since our fall or outdoor season ended October 12.

For two months, the team workouts have focused on three things: hitting, pitching, and strength workouts. For twice a week on Monday & Wednesday, the team workouts consisted of learning and understanding better hitting mechanics through the use of Rightview Pro Technology. This was also a time where our pitchers were doing the same with the help of RVP software.

The other two days of the week on Tuesday-Thursday, we focused on our strength workouts with strength coach Charlie Getty. Coach Getty did a fantastic job of getting our players stronger through a two-month window. Our focus was a softball strength program to gain core and overall body strength. We recently had testing day to see what kind of gains we made for the past 2 months and the results showed significant gains, some of the best we've seen under Coach Getty's leadership. The coaching staff was very pleased with the results and our player's even look stronger. We trust this will transition to the field and season for season performance, endurance and reduced injuries. Great job EU team and Coach Getty!

Player's are now focused on finishing strong with classes and final exams. Our player's are ready for christmas break but also have much anticipation for the 2013 season. It will be here sooner than we think. Merry Christmas and adios till next time!

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Basball Coach
Date: 12/10/2012

Baseball Receives Two Local Commitments

The Evangel Baseball program has received two committments from local area players.

Caleb Kauffman will join the EU program next fall from Weaubleau HS. Caleb has been an All-Conference AND All-District shortstop his freshman, sophomore, and junior years. He has also been awarded 2nd team All-State his freshman year and 1st team All-State his juniour year. We are very excited about what Caleb will bring to our program.

Bryce Wilson has been playing his high school ball at Clever HS. Bryce has been on two Final 4 teams while playing shortstop and pitching for the Blue Jays. Bryce was 1st team All-Conference and 1st team All-District his junior year. We believe Bryce is going to be a great addition to our program.

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Coach
Date: 11/13/2012

Fall World Series Sweep/Beginnig Workouts

Our fall World Series was completed a few weeks ago, so I apologize for the late update. Team McKnight did finish off the 3-0 series sweep with a 6-4 win.

Once the series was completed, the team was given a week off to relax and enjoy some time away from their coaches.

After the off-week, off-season workouts began. Right now the guys are coming in at 6:00 AM on MWF to lift. On TTH, they are starting at 3:30 PM and spending the time conditioning and doing speed and agillity work.

They are working hard and I am sure they are going to like the results of theif efforts.

Jerry Breaux Blogger: Jerry Breaux, Head Softball Coach
Date: 11/1/2012

November Update

EU Softball team currently going through their November workouts and working hard. Two days of the week they are in strength / fitness / agility training where the other 2 days are based on hitting work. Even though we are limited by association rule on how much we can do at this time of year, it is a crucial time in our belief for players to work through any problem areas of their game and individual play. We have our fall games to reference on where we need to go in fixing problem areas. These workouts are going well.

We also focus on academic life and working hard in the classroom. We monitor and check each player's progress and their attendance record. Overall our team does a really good job with their grades and excelling in their respective degree program. We are proud of the diligent work we observe on a regular basis to see each one doing and progressing towards an eventual degree completion.

Our 2013 season schedule is still under construction and should be finalized prior to the Thanksgiving Holidays. It will then be posted on the university athletic website.

Thank you for keeping up with our team and we hope to see you at some of our games next spring season. Adios till next time!

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Coach
Date: 10/17/2012

Fall World Series: Game 2

Game 2 of the series was much different than Game 1. Both teams got on the board in the first three innings with Team McKnight holding a 2-1 lead after the 3rd.

But in the top of the 4th, Team McKnight plated 3 runs on RBI singles by Caleb Ginger and Jake Garrison and an error by Team Myers.

Team McKnight continued to score runs. So by the time Wesley Clay drove in the second run for Team Myers in the bottom of the 6th, Team McKnight was sitting on a 6-2 lead.

Team McKnight then put the game away in the top of the 7th by scoring 4 more runs to take a commanding 10-2 lead. The inning was cappped off by a bases loaded triple by Jake Childers.

Sam Garrison then chalked up a 1-2-3 inning to give Team McKnight the win and a 2-0 series lead.

In today's game, Team Myers will send Justin Stockam to the mound and Team McKnight will counter with Nathan Huckaby for the series sweep.

Lance Quessenberry Blogger: Lance Quessenberry, Head Baseball Coach
Date: 10/17/2012

Fall World Series: Game 1

We are finishing up our fall season with our annual Fall World Series. This year Team Myers will be taking on Team McKnight in a best 3 of 5 foremat. Team Myers is managed by seniors Seth Bailey, Jeff Cullen, and Matt Myers. Team McKnight is lead by Storm Bailey and Blake McKnight.

Game 1 one looked like it would be a blow out with Team Myers taking a 6-0 going into the 5th inning. Matt Myers shutout Team McKnight the first four innings and Seth Bailey and Mike Headlee contributed 2 RBI's each to build the lead.

The game started to change in the 5th when Team McKnight scored on an RBI double by Blake McKnight and then exploded in the 6th with five runs. The inning was highlighted by a Blake McKnight triple that scored 2 runs and ended with a Dustin Franklin sacrifice fly that scored McKnight to tie the score 6-6.

After Nick Garvin put up a zero for Team McKnight on the mound in the top of the 7th, Nick Moore was able to get the first two batters out in the bottom of the inning for Team Myers.

With two outs, CJ Garza was able to draw a walk and Wesley Padilla ran for him. Padilla stole 2B on the first pitch which put a runner in scoring position with 2 outs for Sam Garrison. Garrison then drove a pitch over the head of the right fielder and the comeback was complete and Team McKnight had a 7-6 win.

Game 2 will match Wesley Padilla on the mound for team McKnight, and Koby Gaddis on the mound for Team Myers.

Dawn Neal Blogger: Dawn Neal, Women's Basketball Assistant
Date: 10/10/2012

Preseason is over - Inseason begins

The Women's Basketball team worked very hard in the September preseason conditioning, getting into great physical shape. We began In-season practices on Oct. 1 and we are working hard to gel as a team and learn how to work effectively as a unit. Coach Neal is constantly talking about communication as a team on the court and how it helps in every aspect of the game of basketball. Communication off the court with friends, family, professors, and most importantly with God helps in every aspect of our lives. That is one of the areas that I am most impressed with when it comes to these wonderful young women. The time they spend together off the court getting to know one another has helped them tremendously.

On October 8, 2012 Evangel University Women's basketball team's preseason HAAC ranking stands at #5. Our team Motto this year is Take Hold of your Dreams. With that mentality I think this team will work to take hold of those dreams and be a close knit group at the same time. Our non-conference schedule is a tough one and everyone is working to get better to be the best that they are capable of being. We open with HAAC games beginning on Nov. 29, 2012.

We look forward to seeing all of our fans, friends, and families at our home games and road games to support us on our road to success. May the Lord be glorified through our team.

Jerry Breaux Blogger: Jerry Breaux, Head Softball Coach
Date: 10/5/2012

Fall Softball

Fall-ball coming to a close with only one week remaining. We've been at it since first week of school and fall workouts have gone well. Returners who have stood out for us in fall workouts are sophomore Bethany Bacon (Kirkland, WA) who was stroking the ball hard with couple of HR's. Junior and two-time All-American Dani Billings (Nixa, MO) continues slugging the ball for us. Sophomore Jessica Jett (Fontana, CA) and Junior Shelby Hoffman (Apple Valley, CA) swung the bat well this fall. Senior shortstop Marriana Nelson (Eden Prairie, MN) has been stinging the ball very hard in our intra-squad practice sessions. Senior pitcher Lenzie Boring (Humboldt, KS) "the Humboldt Hummer" looks ready to lead us in the circle as our ACE...Boring had a great outing against U.A. (Arkansas). Sophomore Jasmine Godwin (Moberly, MO) looking good this fall and ready to help us in the circle....Jas is throwing hard with a hard breaking curve. Seniors Kari Tall-Domingos (Sacramento, CA) and Lauren Bunch-Bright (LaPorte, TX) are ready and poised for their senior campaign. Domingos swings a steady bat and Bright will lock down the catching duties as a strong-arm receiver. New players who look ready to provide immediate help are three outstanding freshmen, Brittany Arnold (Canton, TX), Katelyn Tollefson (Simi Valley, CA), and Mikaela Scott (Powder Springs, GA). Arnold has great speed with a strong arm who will occupy the leadoff spot and leftfield area while Tollefson provides help as a triple threat slapper and patrols centerfield. Meanwhile Scott provides immediate help in the circle as RHP and also swings the bat well. Junior transfer Rachel Rhoten (Willard, MO) is an excellent bunter-slapper with terrific speed. Junior transfer RHP Brooke Brenton (Lebanon, MO) compliments the staff as an experienced hurler coming off a national tournament team last year. Rounding out the transfers is junior Jillian Boeschen (Belleville, IL) providing the lineup with offensive power and a strong-arm corner infielder-catcher.

October 12 is homecoming Friday and the EU team will host Independence JC in a scrimmage afternoon at Crusader Field starting at 3:00. We welcome all alum to come out and take a peek at this year's squad as we wrap up our fall '12 season. Hope to see you here at EU for Homecoming '12.

Adios till next time!