What are Mercer student athletes doing over Christmas Break?

Angel Scandrick and her family in Cancun, Mexico over Christmas break one year.

Courtesy of Angel Scandrick

Angel Scandrick and her family in Cancun, Mexico over Christmas break one year.

Emily Harvey, Contributing Writer

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Once the holidays start coming they don’t seem to stop. For most Mercer students, that means looking forward to breaks at home with lots of family, down time and food.

However, for Mercer’s student athletes, nothing is guaranteed. As many seasons just start to pick up, scheduling around the holidays can be extremely difficult.

Angel Scandrick, a freshman on the dance team, faced that exact situation. With the football season coming to a close, basketball will now be the dance team’s main focus.

“I sent my dad my schedule, and he worked around it,” Scandrick said.

Although most of her break ended up being free, had there been any conflicts, Scandrick said she would have chosen to dance.

“I wanted to dance in college,” she said, “so we made it work.”

Each year, as tradition, her family picks a destination to celebrate the holidays.

“This year we’re going to Cancun. I’m really excited.”

Scandrick has traveled to Jamaica, the Bahamas and Cancun in years past.

Others, like Sam Walker, a redshirt sophomore football player, will enjoy the holidays at home. After a tough season, Christmas breaks offers the football team a chance to relax, which explains why Walker said he is excited about “not having to do anything” while home over Christmas.

Still, he said he is most looking forward to “eating [his] mom’s cooking.”

As far as traditions go, Walker said he and his family open one present the night before Christmas.

Lela McIntosh, a sophomore beach volleyball player, has a more unique Christmas experience.

Her favorite Christmas tradition pays homage to her hometown Austin, Texas. Each year, she and her family buy a normal sized tree and a small one.

“The little tree is called a Texas Tree,” McIntosh said.

The tree topped with a cowboy hat rather than a star and features cactus ornaments and jalapeño string lights.

It is Texan in every sense. However, its origin is more sentimental than just statehood pride.

“When we lived in an apartment, that was the only tree we had,” McIntosh said.

McIntosh is looking forward to reuniting with her family.  

Her brother, who is training to become a police officer, wasn’t able to make it home for Thanksgiving, but will be able to go home for Christmas.

McIntosh predicts she’ll join the majority of college students in “binge watching Netflix” during any free time over the break.

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