Lady Bulldogs take on LSU and UK Basketball Teams

Article and photos by Cody Cunningham, graduate assistant in sports information

Coming off of a Sweet Sixteen appearance and a Gulf South Conference Championship in the first season eligible for the NCAA postseason, Coach Mark Campbell and the Lady Bulldog basketball team decided to take on some of the best teams in the country. To open up its season Union traveled to Louisiana State University and then on to the University of Kentucky for exhibition matches to provide a revealing test for the 2015-16 squad.

_MG_5957 Playing in Division I venues is a far different experience than taking on opponents in the Lady Bulldogs home gym, Fred Delay Gymnasium. For a comparison, The Fred holds 2,200 fans when at capacity. In contrast, LSU’s Pete Maravich Assembly Center holds 13,215 spectators. However, the differences don’t stop there. The SEC arenas come adorned with video boards along and above the courts as well as marching bands behind the goals, just to name a few.

_MG_5983 The big lights might be a shock for some of the Lady Bulldogs, but for one they are all too familiar. Carnecia Williams, a junior transfer from Mississippi State, has played in these gyms for the last two years, and that experience certainly has its advantages.

Although games against the elite college basketball teams in the country seem like a morale killer to those on the outside, Coach Campbell likened it to an “impossible mountain to climb” said it shows his team what needs improvement.

_MG_6040 “Ultimately, I think it accomplishes what we want it to accomplish,” Campbell said. “People are going to have better players than us. They are going to be taller, going to be faster, and stronger … and that exposes our weaknesses.”

Although the Lady Bulldogs lost both contests versus SEC teams, they won their other exhibition match against Division III Rhodes College, 87-63. Union kicks off conference play Dec. 3 at 6 p.m., hosting Shorter.

For complete coverage of Union basketball, visit uuathletics.com and follow along on social media @UUAthletics on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram._MG_6350 _MG_6355 _MG_6377 _MG_6414

Lady Bulldogs to Host NCAA Div II Tournament Games

Congratulations to the Lady Bulldogs, who captured their first Gulf South Conference title and earned a No. 1 seed in the South Region of the NCAA Division II Women’s Basketball National Tournament. As the top seed, Union will host the entire South Region, with the Lady Bulldogs taking on No. 8 seed Albany State this Friday, March 13, at 5 p.m.

We would love to see the Fred Delay Gymnasium full of fans and students. To help us fill it up, use #fillthefred on social media to promote the game. Fans not able to attend the tournament in person can watch or listen to the game online.

The Bulldogs, meanwhile, earned an at-large bid to the South Region of the national tournament in Lakeland, Florida. This will mark Union’s first appearance in the NCAA National Tournament since the 1968 season. Union, the No. 7 seed, will face No. 2 seed Barry University on Saturday, March 14, at 2:30 p.m. Watch or listen to the game online.

Go Bulldogs!

The Lady Bulldogs after their Gulf South Conference tournament win

The Bulldogs kicking off the season at Bulldog Madness

Mark Campbell Reaches 500 Career Wins

Team photo from Mark Campbell's first year as head coach

Mark Campbell, far right, in his first team photo as head women’s basketball coach.

Mark Campbell has been head women’s basketball coach at Union University for 15 seasons and has time and time again proven his merits as a coach. If asked about his achievements, he credits his assistant coaches and players more than himself. This humble, team-centered attitude is at the root of what makes him a great coach, and last night was an important milestone for him. The 77-66 victory over Valdosta State marked his 500th career win. Check out UUAthletics.com for more on this story and Mark Campbell’s career.

Photos below are from the game against Valdosta State.

Mark Campbell talks with a player during the gameMark Campbell cheers during a game Mark Campbell watches the action unfold from the bench Mark Campbell yells out a play Mark Campbell watches the intense action under the goal Mark Campbell and players during a timeout Mark Campbell yells plays from the sideline Mark Campbell instructs players Mark Campbell discusses the game after the win Mark Campbell celebrates with the players in the locker room

Union basketball boasts tremendous start for 2014-2015 season

Post by: Lydia Wright, senior public relations major

The men’s and women’s basketball teams are both undefeated after the first three weeks of competition. With conference play beginning this week, both teams hope to make a statement in the Gulf South Conference as they are eligible for NCAA Division II postseason play for the first time.

The men’s team is currently 6-0 with one of those wins coming from an overtime victory against Stillman College on Nov. 22, as part of the University of Alabama Huntsville Classic. Senior guard Corieon Pearson hit a three pointer with 20 seconds left in overtime to give the Bulldogs the lead, 79-78, and ultimately the victory.

Senior guard, Pedro Faller, looks for a pass in the homecoming game

The Bulldogs have reached 90 plus points twice already this season, as they scored 99 points in their season opener against Lemoyne-Owen College and 96 points in the win against Rust College.

The men’s team opens conference play against Shorter University on Friday, Dec. 4, in Rome, Georgia, followed by another conference game, Saturday, Dec. 5, at Lee University in Cleveland, Tennessee.

As for the women’s team, while most students were at home visiting family over Thanksgiving Break, the Lady Bulldogs traveled to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, to participate in the Nova Southeastern Classic. At the time, Nova was ranked number one in all of NCAA Division II.

Amy Philamlee, senior sports medicine major, plays defense

On Friday, Nov. 29, the Lady Bulldogs faced off against Sunshine State Conference member, Barry University, (Fla.) with the women coming out victorious, 70-61.

Saturday brought the second and final match of the tournament for the Lady Bulldogs, as they were set to play the host team, Nova. The Bulldogs came out victorious once again, beating the top team in the nation 83-78.

The two wins at Nova brought the Lady Bulldogs to an overall record of 4-0, making a combined record of 10-0 for Bulldog basketball so far this season. Along with the men’s team, the women will also face off against Shorter and Lee University this coming weekend.

With the way these two teams have begun playing, the GSC teams look like they are in for some tough competition from the Bulldogs and Lady Bulldogs this season.

Bulldog Madness – Athletics Season Kickoff

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Post by Katie Woodruff, associate director of athletics and senior woman administrator

If you weren’t at Bulldog Madness last night, you missed out BIG TIME! It was the biggest pep rally and spirit-building opportunity we’ve had in my 12 years at UU. This is going to sound weird, but it was somewhat of an emotional moment for me. To see so many different groups on campus come together as one to support our student-athletes was great!

In addition, to see the culmination of our hard work being enjoyed by all and supported by so many students, in that moment, was so gratifying.

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“It was great to see so many students come together in support of our athletic teams,” senior psychology major Kevin Morgan said. “Last night there weren’t Greeks and indies or athletes and students, we were all Bulldogs.”

Alec Beard, a junior international business major who filled in as dancing Buster, said he enjoyed seeing the energy and enthusiasm of the crowd.

The evening involved black lights, glow sticks, hyped up music, selfies and more energy than I’ve ever felt before in The Fred. We were intentionally building school spirt through a remix of the flash mob from a performance earlier in the day, introduction of a student-led cheer support team called the Fred Fanatics, a performance from the cheerleaders, some minute-to-win-it games, 10-minute scrimmages by both the men’s and women’s basketball teams and a scrimmage between faculty/staff and students.

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Dr. Oliver then led a “Never Forget” cheer on the court, surrounded by all the students.

“It was really neat to see the student body come together for a fun event supporting our basketball teams,” said Jesse Dahms, a junior business management and psychology major. “The blackout was really awesome and a great way to build hype. I think we are excited and ready for this upcoming basketball season.”

What a night! Our hope and desire in athletics is to continue to build school spirit. Bulldog Madness brought different campus groups together — the Student Athlete Advisory Committee, cheerleaders, the student group Fred Fanatics, volunteers from campus organizations and classes as well as student-athletes. It takes synergy to build energy and enthusiasm. I think we are heading in the right direction, and I’m excited.

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Scott Lancaster, multimedia producer, put together this short video of the events from last night:

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Summer Sports Camps at Union University

Each summer at Union University, there are various summer camps taught by our coaches and athletic teams. Options include baseball, basketball, cheer, soccer, softball and volleyball. Several of the camps took place during the month of June, but there are still opportunities to sign up for the full week boarding basketball camp, several different soccer camps, softball boarding camp and volleyball camp. For more information about each of these, visit uuathletics.com/camps.

These camps are an excellent way to teach children the fundamentals of these sports, but it also serves as a way to teach them the importance of teamwork. Other non-athletic camps and classes can be found here: uu.edu/summers.

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