Merrimack College “Goes Live” This Fall

Kristi Slocum ’15

Staff Writer 

After months of planning and finalizing, Merrimack College will have its first ever Internet college radio station by this fall. Professor Jake Turner and senior Lisa Vassallo have teamed up to give students the chance to control playlists they want to hear at the station. In the near future, students can join the Radio Club and Radio Production class to determine the music and content featured on the station. Music isn’t the only feature you can take part in. If you have any interest in news casting or talking on air, you can practice your skills thanks to the radio station as well.

Promotional materials and news shows most likely related to the Merrimack community, sports and campus life, will be talked about by students like you that are part of the club or class. Professor Jake Turner shares what he is looking forward to most stating; “I’m most excited to give this new voice and new avenue for mediated communication to our students. It will be cool to see our students take to the “air” and put a stamp on the Merrimack community through the Internet radio station outlet. It’s also great professional experience for students interested in working in the media, especially professional radio.”

Lisa Vassallo also can’t wait to see this happen at Merrimack soon. Vassallo believes this will be an excellent opportunity for students, sharing “(the station will) give students great experience, especially if they are interested in working in radio or digital media in some capacity in the future.  It also has a broad reach and increases the sense of community at Merrimack, as you can listen to it anywhere you have Internet.  It gives anyone who is interested an opportunity to be featured and put their own unique touch on their own shows. I think the format of the Radio Club and the Radio Production class will work well too.”

So how are students reacting to this opportunity? John Cerrotti, a sophomore and communication major at Merrimack is one of the many students that are thrilled for the station to begin. Cerrotti explains, “This is a great opportunity for students like me who want careers in entertainment. I know this station will teach me a lot about this field of work and it will be fun to do with friends alike as well!” Students can look forward to an information session for anyone interested around mid-April. This session will include the two ways for students to get involved –either through the Radio Production course in the fall, or the SGA’s official Radio Club.

If you are interested and have any more questions, you can email Professor Turner and Lisa at: turnerjs@merrimack.edu vassallol@merrimack.edu


Relay For Life: Superheros Needed

Colleen Quinlan ’15

Staff Writer

Merrimack College will be hosting a 12-hour event known as Relay For Life on April 10. The American Cancer Society sponsors the event that recognizes survivors and remembers those who have passed away. The theme for the upcoming event this year is “Superheroes.” The theme is related to the heroes who have fought cancer and finding a hero within, the co-chair members explain.

Brianna Decina who is one of the three co-chairs of the event and explains how the event is one big party but also remembers what the event is about.

“It’s a 12-hour party with your friends, but you are also there to honor the people that are going through the disease and honor the caregivers who take care of those with the disease,” Decina said.

Decina explained the money raised goes toward not only research, but also patient services and supporting those who are going through cancer.

The event has four different ceremonies throughout the night. The opening ceremony is kicked off with the Survivors Lap, where all cancer survivors at the event take the first lap around celebrating their victory over cancer. Another event is the Luminaria Ceremony, a special event that takes place after dark where we remember those whom have lost their lives to cancer, honor people who fought cancer in the past, and support those whom continue to fight. Candles or glowsticks are lit and placed inside a personalized bag called luminaria bags, which are placed around the track.

After the Luminaria Ceremony, the third lap of the night is the Caregiver Ceremony. During this lap we recognizes who have given care to cancer patients. Last, there is a Fight Back Ceremony, where we make a personal commitment to save lives by taking up the fight against cancer.

There will be different activities throughout the night. Victoria Ellis, another co-chair member, gave a brief description of what happened last year at the event.

“Last year we had a lot of fun activities such as a giant game of musical chairs, Zumba, a smoothie bike, Mr. Relay, and Joe Andruzzi was our guest speaker,” Ellis says.

Why should students’ participant in this event? Gabriel Maechaoui co-chair members explained why he decided join.

“Originally, I wanted to get involved on campus and meet new people. I made a lot of friends and we all clicked and it was all for a great cause,” Maechaoui says.

“It is nice to see people from campus and knowing they are all in the same mind set and same mood,” Decina said. “Everyone is there for the same reason so it is nice because during the Luminaria event you might be walking next to someone you do not know but you can tell they are supporting you because of that experience. Relay for Life is a community builder.”

Relay for Life will be taking place on April 10th from 6 p.m.- 6 a.m. in the MPR located in the Sakowich Center. Create a team or donate to the American Cancer Society by checking out the website at http://www.relayforlife.org


Merrimack Intramurals

Zachary Ingalls ’15, Staff Writer 

Merrimack College has a wide variety of intramural opportunities in the spring. Intramurals are a fun and competitive way to get involved on campus with friends and fellow students. The Merrimack intramural program offers seven familiar options and one new option for the spring semester. As always, coed 5 v 5 Basketball was a hit this spring along with men and women’s ice hockey during the Spring 3rd quarter intramural session. A new edition to the intramural choices this year was badminton, which was a huge success and will surely be back next spring.

As the snow is finally beginning to melt and ground is starting to thaw everyone is looking forward to the 4th quarter intramural session, especially men’s and women’s softball. I caught up with John Flaherty the reigning fall softball session champion. His team ‘Bat Flips and Fat Dips’ won the championship handedly in the fall and he hopes to continue his intramural softball dominance this spring. John, a three year participant in many different intramural sports including softball, flag football and basketball is really excited to begin his quest for another softball championship. When asked how he thought his chances are to repeat as champion, “I feel like my new team has a very good chance to win the ship, I just can’t wait to get out on the field and have a good time outside.” I asked John if he and his team would have any preseason practice or preparation before the season began, “Yeah definitely, I think that’s what makes the difference in such a competitive league, batting and fielding practice will be mandatory for my team before our first game.” John’s favorite intramural activity is softball followed up closely by flag football. “I enjoy playing intramurals it is very competitive and such a good time, I look forward to it every week.” As you can see from John’s perspective, Intramurals at Merrimack are a great time and very competitive.

Those who want to get involved with spring 4th quarter intramurals or recreational activities should see the desk attendant at the Sakowich fitness center. The 4th quarter activities include men’s and women’s softball, Coed dodge ball, Coed kickball and open wiffleball. Merrimack Intramural program is also offering exciting recreation activities this semester including a paintball trip, ski trip to Waterville Valley, Red Sox and Celtics games and a mini golf trip.


The Merrimack Beacon Takes On Los Angeles

Nick Zwaan ’15

Staff Writer

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The Merrimack College Beacon staff packed their bags February 25th and headed west for warmer weather. Gathering their notepads and laptops they took off from Logan International Airport for Burbank, California. The staff would participate in the four day, 31st Annual ACP National College Journalism Convention held at the Sheraton Universal Hotel in Los Angeles.

With typical attendance of over 750 participants, the midwinter convention has become a breeding ground for new ideas in the journalism field. As well as shared success stories, solutions to the most challenging broadcasting and publishing problems, and more for journalism students and advisers in the United States and Canada. Covering all of its bases, the convention features sessions that touch upon ethics and law, technology and design, advertising and business operations, photography and art, how to on the latest software, and general basics for news and reporting.

It wasn’t all business though; the trip provided some fun in the sun for The Beacon staff as well. Whether it was the Santa Monica beach and pier, the Hollywood Hotel, Hollywood Boulevard, the Capital Records building, or the Universal Studio city walk, everyone had a blast.

Both the W Hotel and the Roosevelt Hotel’s were the grounds for drinks, laughs, and memories between the students. Take a step into The Beacon office and you’re sure to hear a story or joke being replayed from the trip.

Ask the Staff: What Was Your Favorite Part Of The Trip?

“My favorite part? That’s tough…probably Hollywood. The W Hotel, we were at the W Hotel and there was some sort of red carpet event, and we had some drinks and good conversation. I ended up talking to these random guys who develop independent music videos for up and coming rappers, and we ended up in front of the cameras on the red carpet.” –Brendan Doherty

“Seeing the other students from other colleges doing the same things we are, and realizing were on a very good track here at The Beacon. I think that at a future conference we will be the leaders there”-Gretchen Grosky

“Going to the Hollywood sign was really cool we had to go up all of these little hidden paths…It was really cool to see because its something that some of us have only seen on TV or in movies”-Elizabeth Fitzgerald

“My favorite part is probably bonding with my fellow editors. That was my favorite part, getting closer. It was great getting to know everyone better.”-Thomas Conley

“My favorite part was being out on the west coast for the first time with the greatest group of people you could go with. Seeing all the stars on the sidewalk on Hollywood Boulevard was pretty awesome to see”-Mathew Galvao

“My favorite part was meeting one of the stars from the movie Mean Girls in Hollywood and bonding with editors, along with meeting other editors from the other colleges”-Karamarie Joyce

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Mean Girls Star Bethany Byrd (center)

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MC Hockey Takes Huge Step in 2014-15 Campaign

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Photo Credit: Mike McMahon

Mathew Galvao ’17, Sports Editor 

The Merrimack men’s hockey team fell recently to the Boston University Terriers in the Hockey East quarterfinals in a two game sweep. The series ended the playoff run and the season for the Warriors which saw their win column improve by eight wins with a 16-18-4 record.

Merrimack finished the season in 11th place in the Hockey East standings and drew Northeastern in the first round. The Huskies were one of the hottest teams in the conference down the stretch winning the Beanpot tournament and winning 11 out of their last 18 games of the season. The two squads split the regular season series (4-2 Merrimack win) and (3-1 Northeastern win).

The series started off with a 3-2 overtime win for the Warriors. Merrimack held a 2-0 advantage in the third period before the Huskies were able to tie things up and send it into overtime. In the overtime period senior Kyle Singleton scored a shorthanded goal to give the Warriors a 1-0 advantage in the series.

Game two saw Northeastern take the one goal lead in the second period before Jace Hennig tied the game up just minutes later. The game would be sent to overtime and freshman Mathieu Tibbet jammed the puck in the net past Clay Witt to give the Warriors a sweep of the series and send them to the conference quarterfinals.

“I felt like we regained a lot of what we’ve done earlier on in the year. Ras obviously played well and our special teams was good. We got to really hard fought overtime victories,” said head coach Mark Dennehy. “I look at that weekend and it really put the stamp on the year for us. This was a really big step for our program.”

The team then drew top-seeded Boston University in the quarterfinals. It was a tough series that ended in a sweep for the Terriers and ended the season for Merrimack.

“They were the best team in our league this year. We wish we had done a better job in January and February of getting points that we should’ve had so we could maybe be home in that first round and don’t see BU until the one game elimination,” Dennehy explained.

“They’re a tough team to beat, they’re a tough team to beat twice, and they’re a tough team to beat at home. For us to have done what we wanted to do we needed all 20 guys firing on all cylinders.”

After one period in game one the teams were tied 1-1. A four-goal Boston University second period would give them the edge they needed to come away with a 6-2 win. Game two saw BU run away with it in the second period and the game by a 5-0 score.

A common theme this season has been the amount of freshman that this team has played with and have dressed in their lineup regularly. There have been up to six freshmen in the lineup on any given night. These young freshmen contributed nicely during the playoff run scoring 11 points in the Warriors four playoff games all on the road.

“Some players go their whole careers without winning a road playoff series. For this freshman class to be part of a team that’s already done that once we put that in the memory bank,” said Dennehy. “Just to win a playoff series, that’s clutch. Really good experience for them.”

Jace Hennig had a terrific first playoff scoring four goals and adding two assists for six points in four playoff games. Throughout the entire season Hennig has shown that he can compete and produce at the highest level of college hockey in one of the toughest conferences.

“Seney was our leading this season and deservedly so has got a lot of attention. Tibbs, you can’t help but notice him because of his speed. Jace has kind of laid in the weeds a little bit,” Dennehy explained. “He’s a steady, calming presence and has great hockey intellect, and good skill. He was the guy that was in the right position making the right play.”

There were many different players that were key to Merrimack’s success this season. Senior goaltender Rasmus Tirronen was the backbone of this team with his stellar goaltending throughout the season. Tirronen ended the season with a .929 save percentage which is a Merrimack record. He also finished the season with 2.30 goals against average and played in a career-high 31 games.

“He was an elite goaltender all year and he was one of the best goaltenders in the country. He gives us an effort and a chance every night. He was one one of our if not our best player every night,” said Dennehy. “I’m happy for him because I know hard hard he’s had to work to get there.”

The 2014-15 season was a year of much improvement for the Warriors. From doubling their win total to having one of the best penalty kills in the country it was an all around good year for the hockey team and a huge step for the program.

“I believe we scored ⅓ more goals than we scored last year, gave up fewer goals per game, have the best penalty kill in the league, score three more power play goals, doubled our wins and won a road playoff series,” explained Dennehy. “Is our culture growing and everybody understands how we operate will be the task, but I think the ingredients are there.”


Southern Success

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Photo Credits: Merrimack Athletics

Thomas Conley ’15, Associate Sports Editor 

Spring break might have meant a relaxing, stress-free time, surrounded by a tropical setting, but for Merrimack’s baseball team their paradise was on the diamond. The Warriors opened up their season in Fort Pierce, Florida with a double header against Nyack.

The Warriors started their season on a roll beating Nyack in both games. Merrimack’s starting pitchers for the first two games were seniors Tim Cashman, and Joe Carnevale, respectively. Both players have proved in seasons past that they are two ace-worthy pitchers, and in Florida they proved it once again. In game one Cashman threw a dominant seven innings, only allowing one Nyack hit, no walks, and nine strikeouts. Not to be outdone, in game two, Carnevale, who also threw seven strong innings, gave up only five hits, no walks, along with eight Ks. Both left the games with wins. Over the next two games, it was up to the young guns, Sophomore Perry Kulaga, and Freshman P.J. Browne to get it done on the mound against Willmington. Both showed up, accumulating 14 innings pitched, 4 runs allowed, 3 walks, and 8 strikeouts, leading Merrimack to a perfect 4-0 start.

It’s not just the pitching on Merrimack that has the Warriors looking like a threat in the NE-10, but the offense as well. Over the first 11 games the Warriors offense has posted a respectable .272 team batting average along with 61 runs. Leading the streaky offense over the first 11 games are junior captains, Frank Crinella, and Matt Brown. Crinella leads the team in hits with (16), RBI (10), and batting average with an impressive .400 average. Brown, the designated hitter, is living up to his title, posting a .353 average, and 8 RBI. Both players also have a homerun each, reminding division foes who not to pitch to when the game is on the line.

“I believe our offense is one of the strongest in our conference. We have a relentless line up, with a lot of guys who have had success in previous years. In the beginning of the trip we were antsy and anxious to get on the field but toward the end we all settled in and we’re able to be successful. Even in the games we lost, overall our offense performed pretty well. We hit bombs”, said the assured captain when asked about the team’s offense on the trip.

With NE-10 conference games around the corner, the Warriors seek to continue their streak with the hot bats, and remain dominant on the mound. Both the pitching and the line up look better than ever, all the team needs to do is live up to their potential. With a new coaching staff, promising freshman players, and confident captains, this year could be something special for the Warriors; at least that’s what junior captain Pat Florence thinks.

“Overall it was a solid trip. We’ve proved we have what it takes. If we fight for each other every game we will make a great run this year”, said Florence.


Warrior Spotlight: Frank Crinella

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Photo Credit: Merrimack Athletics

Thomas Conley ’15, Associate Sports Editor 

Despite the prolonged winter, baseball is finally underway for our Warriors, and it seems like captain, Frank Crinella, hasn’t missed a beat. During spring break the team traveled down south to Florida and North Carolina, posting a 6-3 record on their weeklong trip. Crinella was a big part of Merrimack’s offense hitting an average of .474, along with posting an impressive .842 slugging percentage and .583 on-base percentage. The junior third baseman also lead his team on the trip with hits (9), runs scored (7), extra-base hits (4), RBI (7), and steals (5).  Crinella highlighted his success down south by cranking his first homerun of the season and eighth for his Merrimack. career. With Northeast-10 Conference play coming up this weekend it is pivotal that Crinella continues his hot streak to help lead the high powered offense against in-conference foes. Now that we know what he can do with the bat, lets take a look and see who the All-American really is.

Q: What does it mean to you when you put on the Warrior uniform and represent your school?

A: It’s an honor to wear the Navy and Gold. Whenever I put on the Merrimack Jersey I know I’m surrounded by my brothers. It’s a special feeling representing Merrimack throughout the summer against kids who play throughout the country.

Q: How old were you when you first started playing baseball?

A: I first started playing baseball when I was old enough to pick up a ball. My brother and I were always outside taking ground balls with my dad in the backyard.

Q: Were you always a third baseman?

A: I was a catcher when I started out in little league and then I primarily played shortstop throughout my career until my sophomore year of college.

Q: If you could play any other position, what would it be?

A: If I could play any other position it would probably be second base.

Q: With all the success you’ve had a future in this sport for you seems possible. Where do you see yourself, baseball-wise, after you graduate?

A: I hope to see myself reaching the pro ranks. I don’t focus on that. I try to be the best I can be on a daily basis.

Q: If you could pick another sport to play, what would it be?

A: If I could pick another sport it would be hockey. I played my whole life and I miss the physical aspect of the game.

Q: How far do you see your team going this year?

A: If our team can put the pieces of the puzzle together we will be a tough team to beat. I think we have the capability of being a CWS caliber team if we are consistent with our goals.

Q: As a captain, what responsibility do you need to take on to help lead your team to success?

A: I have to push the guys to their limits so that they leave nothing on the table.

Q: Considering the strength you’ve shown at the plate, along with your average, do you consider yourself a power hitter, or more contact?

A: I try to be both. I worked a lot this summer on trying to limit my strikeouts, but keep the power behind my swing.

Q:  Why did you choose Merrimack as your school?

A:  I chose Merrimack as my school because I like the academics. It’s a great degree from a school with a elite reputation.


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