Carlos Martinez elected as Student Trustee


Image taken by Ryan Prochaska

The students of Black Hawk have spoken, and there’s a new Student Trustee on campus, one dedicated to making improvements on campus for a better student experience.

Freshman Carlos Martinez, who is pursuing a degree in pre-engineering, was elected as the new Student Trustee to represent the students on the Board of Trustees. Before Election Day, Martinez squared off in a debate with fellow candidate Rowen Burroughs, in a final attempt to influence undecided voters why he would be the best choice for the position.

The debate consisted of questions about how the candidates would go about serving as the Student Trustee, and the changes they intend on making if elected.

Martinez will serve as the Student Trustee for one year, during this time, he looks forward to serving as a voice for his fellow students and hopes to ultimately make Black Hawk’s campus experience better.

Overall, the responsibilities of the Student Trustee is to serve as the voice of the students on the Board of Trustees. The Student Trustee can bring up any concerns or improvements that could be made in the best interest of the students, and that’s exactly what enticed Martinez to get involved and run for Student Trustee.

“I wanted to play a role, and actually be able to influence what’s going on,” said Carlos Maritnez. “Many times, students are only here at Black Hawk for two years, and they really don’t get involved. I want to show the students there’s an opportunity to get involved, and we can make changes on campus to make things better for the students.”

Martinez encourages suggestions on what exactly needs improved at Black Hawk, so if you see him on campus speak up and don’t be shy, it takes a voice for change.

Future holds promise for Super Tuesday winners


Image courtesy of

The 2016 Presidential race is in full swing, and candidates from both parties were primed for Super Tuesday, as primaries were held in 13 states including American Samoa.

The significance of Super Tuesday couldn’t be more evident. Since 1988, the candidate who has won the most states on Super Tuesday has gone on to win their party’s nomination.

A total of 1,460 delegates were up for stake last Tuesday, with 865 on the Democratic side and 595 on the Republican side. Continue reading “Future holds promise for Super Tuesday winners”

All about staying positive for Lady Braves

Let’s be honest, the season hasn’t exactly gone the way the Lady Braves would have of hoped prior to the start of the season.

With only four games remaining in the regular season, the program is currently 6-15 overall and 1-7 in conference play. Despite the losing record, the team remains confident they can finish the season strong just in time for the playoffs. Continue reading “All about staying positive for Lady Braves”

Lady Braves rebuilding for success

The beginning of a new season is always an exciting time for any team no matter the sport. The playing field is even and every program has the opportunity to become a championship team regardless of the past.

With a roster full of talent and an experienced coaching staff, there’s plenty of reasons for the Lady Braves to be excited about the opportunity they have in front of them. But first, let’s go back three seasons ago when excitement was very hard to come by for this program. Continue reading “Lady Braves rebuilding for success”

Lady Braves softball preview

The Lady Braves dealt with adversity for practically all of last season. The program played the entire year with only nine players due to some key injuries and a few players quitting the team. The Lady Braves look forward to working hard this fall to give them the opportunity to be competitive this spring.

Head Coach Carrie Calderon is entering her 23rd season with the program, and after a disappointing 2014 campaign she is more than eager to get back to work.

“I’m really energized and excited for this spring because I love being around people that want to work hard and challenge themselves, but who also want to learn the game,” Coach Calderon said.

Coach Calderon’s main focus point for the fall season is for her team to continue to learn every day. The Lady Braves are a young team this year with twelve freshmen and only four returning sophomores.

For Coach Calderon, the fall season is an opportunity to give the first year players important experience playing at the college level.
“They’re not playing high school softball any more, they have to make the adjustment to everything being faster and more challenging.”

Freshman outfielder Caitlin DeWitte credits Coach Calderon and the sophomore players for helping her through the learning process that comes with playing college softball. Caitlin admits the fall season has been challenging at times, but Coach Calderon has taught her that nothing is going to come easy at the college level so she has to approach the game with a never give up mentality.

The sophomores on the team have also played a role in helping Caitlin prepare for this spring. According to Caitlin, the sophomore players are always there to help whenever she’s in need, which has helped her learn from her mistakes. With the spring season five months out, Caitlin looks forward to continue preparing for the spring by working hard and learning with her teammates during practice.

Sophomore outfielder Amanda Bowen, who is a team captain, embraces any opportunity she gets to help her teammates. However, she believes the entire team contributes to the learning process.

“I’ve learned so much from the freshmen players as well. It’s a learning process where we’re all able to learn from each other, and I believe that will make our team stronger,” Amanda Bowen said.

The Lady Braves competed in seven exhibition games this fall and they recently concluded their fall season with the programs second annual Alumni game. The team will now focus their attention on conditioning in preparation for the spring season. The Lady Brave’s complete roster and schedule can be found at

Nothing Guaranteed for Braves Baseball

For the last three seasons, the Braves Baseball team has managed to come up just short of advancing to the NJCAA National Tournament, but this year’s team isn’t concerned with the past. The Braves are confident they can compete for a National title, and they understand the importance of having a successful fall season.

The fall season consist of the Braves playing in several exhibition games, including games against Western Illinois and St. Ambrose. The team currently has four games left before they finish the fall season competing in the Black and Gold World Series.

Starting right hand pitcher, Joey Fredrickson, who has reached as high as 89 mph on his fastball this fall, is confident in the team’s ability to compete for a National Title. Fredrickson admits the team needs to improve on their batting, but overall he’s been impressed with the team’s progress so far.

As a captain, Fredrickson embraces the opportunity to show the first year players the standards Coach Chavera and the program have set in place.

“As a captain, I want to make sure every incoming freshman knows the expectations of acting first class on and off the field,” Fredrickson said.

The program lost 11 sophomore players from last season, but the Braves will have eight returning sophomores and three sophomore transfers. Having 11 players with prior college baseball experience should benefit the Braves this upcoming spring, but just being a sophomore doesn’t get you in the starting line up on this team.

The fall season is all about competition for the Braves, and from day one Coach Chavera and his staff made it clear to the team that nothing is guaranteed.

“The players that are returning are pretty good, and they were starters last year for a reason, but they know in this business my job is to put the best product on the field every day,” Coach Chavera said.

Whether a player is on a full tuition scholarship or is a walk on, each player is expected to compete against one another. Coach Chavera’s goal is to create an environment where the players are competing every day to prepare them to compete against their opponents.

To establish competition on a consistent basis, the coaching staff has come up with a rather unique way for the players to embrace the competition.

Every day at practice, the Braves have some form of competition against one another. The team is split up into two groups: the Sauk Tribe and the Fox Tribe, which were two tribes led by Chief Blackhawk. The two teams can earn points by making good plays at practice or during a game, and they can also lose points for things such as showing up late to practice. The two teams can also earn points by winning competitions such as relay races and kick, pass, punt competitions. Every two weeks the points are added up and the tribe that has the least amount of points are assigned to clean up duty on the field or extra conditioning.

The coaching staff doesn’t want any player becoming complacent and content with their role on the team. They want the players to be pushed, whether it’s by the coaching staff or a teammate to ensure each player competes every day.

Every year the Braves’ goal is to bring a National Title to Black Hawk, but winning is not Coach Chavera’s number one priority. Coach Chavera believes the most important aspect of his job is helping his players develop enough to play for a four year school. The coaching staff takes pride in developing their players to be able to move on to the next level, and last year the program had seven players who were signed by Division I schools.

With the spring season still months away, it’s impossible to speculate how the season will go for the Braves, but make no mistake – this team will be competing every step of the way.

The entire fall and spring schedules, as well as a complete roster, can be found at

Staying positive equals success for Lady Braves

The 2015 Lady Braves Volleyball season is finally upon us, and this year’s team is determined to have a successful season.

The Lady Braves are coached by Head Coach Mary Davis, who is entering her twenty-fourth year as Head Volleyball Coach at Black Hawk. Coach Davis attended Black Hawk from 1983-1985, where she played on the Lady Braves Volleyball team.

After graduating from Black Hawk, Coach Davis became an assistant coach at BHC, and four years later she was named the Head Coach of the program. Coach Davis admits it was all about winning her first few years coaching, but eventually her perspective on the importance of coaching changed.

“After a few years of coaching, it became more about being a good role model for young women and teaching them how important education is for them to make good decisions and to be strong young women in life,” Coach Davis said.

As far as Coach Davis’s expectations for this season, she hopes to pick off right where the team left off last year. With a young team last year, the Lady Braves experienced a slow start early in the season, but they continued to improve and ended up finishing second in the Arrowhead Conference. The Lady Braves fell two games short of qualifying for the NJCAA Tournament last season, but this year the team is focused on staying competitive and winning their conference.

The Lady Braves will be led by their three captains this season, Katherine Fringer, Morgan Ripperger, and Courtney Cobert. All three girls are returning from last season, and they all agree that Coach Davis has taught them how important it is to be mentally tough throughout a season.

“You have to be mentally tough in this sport. If you’re not mentally tough then you’re bringing down the whole team,” Morgan Ripperger said.

Captains Katherine Fringer and Courtney Cobert credit Coach Davis for teaching them how to enjoy the moment and how to keep a positive attitude regardless of the circumstance.

Katherine and Courtney believe if you’re not having fun while your playing then you have no shot at winning the game.

The Lady Braves currently have a 9-12 record as they enter the final month of the regular season. With only eight games remaining in the regular season, the girls are focused on adding to the win column before the Regional Tournament begins in early November.