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Bruins strengthen program to prepare for spring sports

Despite adding a new sport this semester, BJU will field the same number of sports as last semester due to a shortage of players for the women's golf team.
Photos: Bradley Allweil

IBruins baseball begins its second season Tuesday against St. Andrews University in North Carolina. The Bruins play their opening home games against Milligan University Feb. 11-12.

The Bruins face a difficult schedule this season, but the team brought on 19 new players from the 2022 recruiting class and includes many returning players.

The Bruins have an eight game home stand later in the season, facing Toccoa Falls College, Truett-McConnell University, Covenant College and St. Andrews University at Conestee Park.

At the end of the season, the Bruins will play in the Non Dual-Affiliated (NDAG) regional tournament, and the winner will go on to the NCCAA World Series.

Bruins basketball is in full swing. The men’s team welcomed seven players to its roster for the 2021-2022 season with a strong core group of returning players. Seven student-athletes also joined the women’s team.

Despite adding a new sport this semester, BJU will field the same number of sports as last semester due to a shortage of players for the women’s golf team.
Photos: Kyle Marks

The men’s team won back-to-back home games in January against Johnson University and Southeastern Baptist College.

The Bruins beat Johnson University 81-77 as well as Southeastern Baptist, who took out the Bruins in Region Quarterfinals last season, 89-69. The men’s home game against Pensacola Christian was canceled due to COVID-19.

The women’s team opened the season with an 84-47 home win over Agnes Scott College and went undefeated in region play until a loss to Pensacola on Jan. 21.

The Bruins men’s and women’s teams will play against Pensacola in Florida on Saturday.

Bruins beach volleyball will start its inaugural season on March 4. The team kicks off the season with four matches over two days in Cleveland, Georgia, playing against Spartanburg Methodist College, Truett McConnel University, Erskine College and Lincoln Memorial University.

Several players from the indoor volleyball squad will be playing on the sand for the spring season, as well as some other student-athletes and incoming freshmen.

Caitlyn Land and Bailee Hunger, upperclassmen coming from the indoor team, “will be ready to bring the energy we need and the right team culture from the start,” Christa Schlichting, the assistant coach of the Bruins beach volleyball team, said.

This team will “bring a solid foundation and work ethic to the new program,” Schlichting said.

After breaking several school records in the 2021 season, the Bruins track and field teams are ready for 2022.

The men’s and women’s seasons will start on March 5 with the Gotta Run Invite at Southern Wesleyan University in Central, South Carolina.

The Bruins have eight meets this season in North and South Carolina and hope to qualify for the NCCAA National Championship, which will take place May 11-13 in Greenville, Illinois. The meets include throwing, sprinting and mid and distance running events.

The Bruins golf team is ready for another season. After winning its second NCCAA South Region Championship in the fall and having team captain Grant Bagwell become an NCCAA All-American, the golf team is looking forward to the spring.

“Moving into NCAA DIII, we’re playing in a lot of new tournaments; that’s going to be a challenge,” Bruins men’s golf head coach Denny Scott said. “Upperclassmen Isaac Childrey and Grant Bagwell bring experience to the team with consistency, scoring and leadership on and off the course,” Scott said.

During the more competitive spring season, the Bruins will play in six tournaments, hoping to carry the momentum from the fall.

The team will start the season Feb. 21 at the CIU Invitational in Columbia, South Carolina. On April 5-6 the Bruins will host the Competitor’s Cup at Green Valley Country Club.

This home tournament “is always a spring season highlight,” Scott said.