Two ETBU Student-Athletes Named Players of the Week by ASC

Posted by Tiger Pride in Athletics, Honors


Two East Texas Baptist University student-athletes were recognized by the American Southwest Conference in the same week as Player of the Week in their respective sports.

Sophomore  basketball player Dylan Augustine was named Player of the Week for games played February 9-15. During that stretch the Tigers gained the first place spot in the conference standings led by Augustine’s performance on the court.

Softball pitcher Kelly Jo McLendon was named Pitcher of the Week for games played February 10-16. The Lady Tigers, ranked third in the preseason NFCA Division III poll swept Hardin-Simmons over the weekend in a three game series at Taylor Field.


Games played Feb. 9-15

PLAYER OF THE WEEK – Dylan Augustine, G, So., East Texas Baptist
Sophomore guard Dylan Augustine (Jennings, La./Hathaway HS) averaged 15.5 points and shot .667 overall in the two biggest games of the year for ETBU. He shot .778 from three-point range (7-of-9) and was a perfect 8-of-8 from the free throw line against HSU. Augustine scored a career-high 25 points and only missed one shot from the floor making all five three-point attempts against the Cowboys in the game for first place in the conference standings. In the final 31 seconds against HSU went 6-of-6 from the foul line to put the game away. With ETBU up by four with 10 seconds left, Augustine stole the ball, got fouled and made two more free throws to seal the win. Against Texas Dallas he scored six points hitting two three-pointers with his second one being made with 46 seconds left in the game to put ETBU up by one (59-58) as they went on for the 63-58 win.

mcclendon pitcher of the week

Games played Feb. 10-16

PITCHER OF THE WEEKKelly Jo McLendon, RHP, Jr., East Texas Baptist
Junior pitcher Kelly Jo McLendon (Livingston, Texas/Livingston HS) pitched a no-hitter in game three on Saturday and allowed just one walk in 17 batters faced. She went 2-0 with no earned runs in both outings as each game was a run-rule victory. In her first outing last Friday McClendon gave up just three hits and no earned runs in an 11-1 win. The next day she recorded six strikeouts with one walk in the no-hitter winning 8-0. McClendon retired the sides in the first, second, fourth, and fifth innings in the no-hitter win.

(Copy from the American Southwest Conference website.)


A Story of Love from KTBS Channel 3 Shreveport

Posted by Tiger Pride in Faculty/Staff


Screen shot: KTBS.COM

Screen shot: KTBS.COM

One of the professors teaching in the East Texas Baptist University School of Education, Dr. John Sargent, was featured in a story aired by KTBS-TV Shreveport. Dr. Sargent has been at ETBU since 2003 and over the weekend, Gerry May, evening anchor for KTBS-TV Shreveport, did a feature on Dr. Sargent and his wife, Kathleen.

Since Valentine’s Day was this past Saturday, the story for the Hometown Patriot segment, dealt with love. The Sergeants met in 1991 while serving our country in the U.S. Air Force at Dyess Air Force base located in Abilene, Texas.

To watch the story that aired on KTBS, click here.

Congratulations to the Sargent’s who will celebrate 23 years of marriage next month.

To find out more about the ETBU School of Education and its programs, click here


Tiger Softball Ranked High By NFCA

Posted by Tiger Pride in Athletics

preseason nat ranking softball

Starting off the season as one of the best NCAA Division III teams in the nation, the East Texas Baptist University softball team has been voted third in nation by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association. ETBU received 186 points and was just three points off of being the second ranked team in the nation.

ETBU returns 15 players from last year’s team that went 45-10 and finished fifth at the NCAA Division III World Series.  With their program best 45 wins, the NFCA gave them a fourth place finish in the national poll. The 45 wins were the second most in the nation behind national champion Tufts University’s 47 wins.  ETBU is also three spots ahead of fellow ASC member Texas-Tyler who is tied for sixth place.

ETBU opens up their 2015 season on Friday, February 13th with a double-header against Hardin-Simmons at Taylor Field at 4:00 p.m.


ETBC Grad Retiring After 38 years in Ministry

Posted by Tiger Pride in Alumni


Tiger Pride has learned from the latest digital edition of the Baptist Standard that East Texas Baptist College graduate Troy Richardson is retiring after 38 years in ministry.

Here is what was posted by the Baptist Standard:


Troy Richardson, Jan. 15, after seven years as pastor of First Baptist Church in Warren and 38 years in ministry. A graduate of East Texas Baptist College and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, he spent his first eight years as a pastor in Utah. Since 1985, he has served Texas churches in San Augustine, Bon Weir, Woodville, Amarillo and Warren. He and his wife, Bonnie, have four children.


Tiger Landon Price Votes As ASC’s Distinguished Scholar

Posted by Tiger Pride in Athletics, Honors

price landon asc award

East Texas Baptist University men’s cross country runner Landon Price has been awarded a prestigious academic award from the American Southwest Conference as the distinguished scholar athlete for his sport. He is the first for ETBU to receive this award under Natalie Bach-Prather.

Each school nominated an athlete for the award which was voted on by the sports information directors. Price was chosen out of seven nominees for the elite award.

The Distinguished Scholar-Athlete Teams recognizes student-athletes who achieve a high level of academic achievement (a 3.20 grade-point average or better) while competing as a starter or important reserve on their team. From that list – limited to one nominee per school in each ASC championship sport – the sports information directors from the 12 ASC member institutions select a Distinguished Scholar-Athlete in each sport. Below is Price’s bio for the award.

Landon Price (Mount Vernon, Texas / Mount Vernon HS) is a religion and missions major with a 3.89 grade point average. An Academic All-Conference selection, Price graduated in December with Dean’s List honors and is currently enrolled at East Texas Baptist as a graduate student. One of the best runners in program history, Price finished fourth at the ASC Championship and later competed in his second consecutive NCAA Division III South / Southeast Regional Meet. A two-time first team all-conference selection, Price broke the ETBU 8K record and recorded three top-five finishes last fall.


He is not a famous pastor but probably should be.

Posted by Tiger Pride in Alumni

Retiring pastor Dr. Wallace Watkins, left, presents a Bible to Central Baptist Church's new pastor, Patrick Adair. Both Watkins & Adair are alumni of ETBU. (Courtesy photo)

Retiring pastor Dr. Wallace Watkins, left, presents a Bible to Central Baptist Church’s new pastor, Patrick Adair. Both Watkins & Adair are alumni of ETBU. (Courtesy photo)

Over the weekend, the Marshall News Messenger published a story written by Cait Shields about Dr. Wallace Watkins.  Bro. Wallace has retired as pastor of Central Baptist Church of Marshall. He joined Central almost 38 years ago.

The membership of Central held a service on January 11 to say farewell to Bro. Wallace and hello to their new pastor Patrick Adair.   

Bro. Patrick, a 2001 graduate of East Texas Baptist University, was quoted in the article saying, “There’s a friend of mine who said, Wallace Watkins is not a famous pastor but probably should be.”

I agree. My first contact with Bro. Wallace came in 1997 as he was serving as the Interim Pastor of Friendship Baptist Church of Marshall and Vice President for Spiritual Development at ETBU. I called him because the pulpit search committee at Friendship was showing interest in me becoming there next pastor.

He was very gracious on the phone and encouraging as we talked “pastor things” concerning Friendship.  As we finished the conversation he said, “Mike, anyway I can be of help to you, call me.”  I served as pastor of Friendship for six years before coming to ETBU as the Director of Public Relations in 2003. During those six years, when I ran into him he always asked, not in a casual way but in a concerned, caring way, “How are you doing?” 

When I arrived at ETBU and went by to visit with Bro. Wallace. He once again offered his help and welcomed me to the Hill. Bro. Wallace has been a friend to me since that first phone call and I wonder just how many others he and wife, Susie, have offered help to in the name of Jesus Christ?  The number has to be large.  

After Bro. Wallace served the first time at Central as pastor for 18 years (1977-1995), he served at ETBU which is his alma mater, for 10 years. He has helped many churches in his role as an intentional interim pastor after leaving the university. He did this type of ministry, helping churches, for five years then was called back to Central as pastor for a second time.

Bro. Wallace reflected in the Marshall News Messenger story, “Central Baptist had been going through a difficult time in its life, and while I never expected to serve as pastor there again, I received as clear an impression from God as I have ever received about anything. I needed to make myself available to go back to Central and see if the Lord could not use me to help them move back to focusing on those things for which they were established in 1943.”

During the past five years he served as pastor of Central, I have witnessed, how God has used him to prepare a church for its next chapter of service in the Kingdom of God. 

Like was said earlier, he is not famous but should be because of his love for His Savior and the love he has for others

The Watkins will remain members at Central and is looking forward to a new perspective being out in the pew. He said to close the story in the paper, “It will be so nice to have a pastor.”   

Bro. Wallace, thank you for your service to ETBU, Central Baptist Church, and to the community of Marshall, Texas.

(Copy from Marshall News Messenger ‘From the Hilltop’ blog written by ETBU Director of Public Relations Mike Midkiff.)

To read the story published in Marshall News Messenger, click here.


Tigers On the ASC Fall All-Academic Teams

Posted by Tiger Pride in Academics, Athletics, Honors


The American Southwest Conference has announced its 2014 Fall All-Academic Teams with 34 East Texas Baptist University student/athletes on the list. More than 350 student-athletes from 12 member institutions are on the honor list and include the sports of men’s and women’s cross country, football, men’s and women’s soccer and volleyball.

To be eligible for ASC All-Academic honors, student-athletes must be classified academically as a sophomore, junior, senior or graduate student during the competition season and have been in attendance and completed at least one academic year (two consecutive semesters) at their institution. They must also have a 3.0 cumulative grade point average (GPA) as certified at the conclusion of the academic semester in which the ASC sport championship is held.

Making the 2014 ASC Fall All-Academic Teams from ETBU are:

Men’s Cross Country

Aaron Durham – Liberty, Texas

Nicolas Larzabal – Bogota, Columbia

Jack Perkins -  Anna, Texas

Landon Price – Mount Vernon, Texas

Ian Spencer – Marshall, Texas


Women’s Cross Country

Madison Kauffman – Sugarland, Texas

Megan Merrill – Mount Pleasant, Texas

Shelby Sparks – Richardson, Texas

Shelby Taylor – Flint, Texas



Travis Danford – Fort Worth, Texas

Bryce Hale – Quinlan, Texas

Ricky Jenkins – Fort Worth, Texas

Jacob McClain – Teague, Texas

Onisokien Osuamkpe – Rosharon, Texas

Cody Pruitt –  Huffman, Texas

Evan Simpson -  Dew, Texas

Josh Warbington -  Hallsville, Texas


Men’s Soccer

Justin Adams – Kilgore, Texas

Brett Forbus – Kilgore, Texas


Women’s Soccer

Kayla Cradit – Houston, Texas

Whitney Justice – Tyler, Texas

Sasha Kotowych – Humble, Texas

Erin Miller – Lumberton, Texas

Amber Pless – Willis, Texas

Christina Salas – College Station, Texas

Nicole Salom – Rockwall, Texas

Natalie Torres – Mabank, Texas



Nicole Buzzard – Round Rock, Texas

Megan Elrod – Irving, Texas

Kayla Green – Keller, Texas

Morgan Rupp – Mansfield, Texas

Mallory Sanders –  Mansfield, Texas

Kolby Sharp – Pearland, Texas

Kayla Taylor – Arlington, Texas


4th Consectutive Year: President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Role

Posted by Tiger Pride in Honors, Spiritual Life, Student Life

president's HE service logo

For the fourth consecutive year, East Texas Baptist University has been named to the 2014 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll by the Corporation for National and Community Service. This designation is the highest honor a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning, and civic engagement.

The President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll annually highlights the role colleges and universities play in solving community problems and placing more students on a lifelong path of civic engagement by recognizing institutions that achieve meaningful, measurable outcomes in the communities they serve. ETBU was recognized in the General Community Service category which recognizes institutions that have made a commitment to improving the quality of life of off-campus community residents.  

The ETBU Great Commission Center, led by Dr. Lisa Seeley, encourages students to be involved in community service projects. ETBU was named to the 2014 Honor Roll for its community and service work accomplished during the 2012-2013 academic year.

To read more about this honor, click here.


A New Semester & Congratulations to the Graduates

Posted by Tiger Pride in Academics, Alumni, Honors, Memories on the Hill, Student Life

Interim President Dr. Lawrence Ressler presents Payton Beggs with the President's Award during fall commencement. Photo by Mike Midkiff.

Interim President Dr. Lawrence Ressler presents Payton Beggs with the President’s Award during fall commencement. Photo by Mike Midkiff.

The Spring Semester at East Texas Baptist University begins tomorrow (Jan.7). Yesterday students started to move back into the residential halls. The number of students returning yesterday was light but today it will be in full force.  Classes resume bright and early tomorrow at 8:00 a.m.

Congratulations to the 72 students who were awarded degrees on Saturday, December 20, during Fall Commencement. Of those, 59 received baccalaureate degrees and 13 received master’s degrees. The Fred Hale School of Business had its first every graduates of the Master of Business in Entrepreneurial Leadership program with six. The new program began during the fall 2013 semester. The Schools of Christian Studies, Education and Natural and Social Sciences also awarded master degrees during commencement.

During fall commencement, Payton Beggs was presented the President’s Award by ETBU Interim President Dr. Lawrence Ressler.   

The President’s Award is given to a graduating senior judged by the faculty to be the best all-around student enrolled in the University. The award includes scholastic ability and development, the degree of involvement in activities which reflect the ideals of the institution, character, integrity, and general attitude.

When Dr. Ressler called her named I was watching her as she sat among her fellow graduates.  She was stunned. It appeared to me she said to herself, “Did he just call my name. Let me wait and make sure it was my named he called before I stand up.”

Payton is a young lady who was very involved during her time at ETBU. She told me she is going to miss the Hilltop very much.

East Texas Baptist University Dean of the Fred Hale School of Business Dr. Scott Ray calls the name of graduate Haley Marie Hilton of  North Richland Hills. Behind Hilton, awaiting their names to be called are sisters Kaitlyn and Karson Kent of Mount Pleasant.

East Texas Baptist University Dean of the Fred Hale School of Business Dr. Scott Ray calls the name of graduate Haley Marie Hilton of North Richland Hills. Behind Hilton, awaiting their names to be called are sisters Kaitlyn and Karson Kent of Mount Pleasant.

The Wichita Falls native graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Speech Communication. Earlier in the fall semester, she received the Bob and Gayle Riley Servant Leadership Award.  During her time on the Hilltop, Payton was a member of the very successful ETBU Debate team as well as being involved in the ministries of the Baptist Student Ministry. She also led the worship service many times for Refuge that is held on Tuesday evenings. She attended Crossroads Baptist Church while a student at ETBU.

One of the joys of serving at ETBU is watching students achieve their educational goals by receiving their degrees from ETBU.  As the spring semester begins, I am looking forward to commencement on May 2nd to witness again those who graduate from the Hilltop.  

To see the Fall graduate list, click here.


Carver Named ASC Player of the Week

Posted by Tiger Pride in Athletics, Honors

pow carver dec 15

Averaging a double-double last week, East Texas Baptist University women’s basketball player Amber Carver has been named the American Southwest Conference Player of the Week.  This is the first time ETBU has had a player of the week since February 19, 2013, when April Leonard was given the award.

Carver averaged 23 points and 10.5 points per game against the University of the Ozarks and Rust College.  She scored a career-high 29 points with 11 rebounds in an ASC loss to Ozarks and then added 17 points and 10 rebounds in the win over Rust College.  Against Ozarks, she shot .619 from the floor (13-of-21) in just 22 minutes of play.

For the year, Carver is averaging 18 points and 10 rebounds per game.  She has nine blocked shots and is shooting .567 from the floor.

ETBU is 4-3 overall and hosting Texas-Tyler on Friday at 5:30 p.m.