Patriots eye NCAA bids

 

BY PHIL HICKS

It is a busy weekend for UT Tyler sports teams as conference tournaments and meets get underway.

At stake are bids to the NCAA Division III tournaments.

Baseball, softball, tennis and track are in action.

Patriot baseball

at home

After winning their seventh straight ASC East Division crown and eighth overall title, the Patriots will play host to West No. 4 seed Hardin-Simmons Friday and Saturday at Irwin Field.

The best-of-three series begins on Friday with Game 1 at 6 p.m. Game 2 is set for 2 p.m. Saturday. If a third game is needed, it will take place after Game 2.

UT Tyler (30-10) enters the series ranked No. 12 in the nation. Hardin-Simmons has a 22-17 record.

All first-round series tournament games are nine innings and if needed, the NCAA’s 10-run rule after seven innings will be observed.

If the Patriots win their series, they will play host to the ASC Championship Tournament May 3-5 at Irwin Field. UT Tyler won the ASC championship in 2009 and 2010.

Admission prices are $5 for adults and $3 for students. No complimentary passes will be issued.

Softball Tournament

The UT Tyler softball squad will try to secure their third ASC title when the tournament gets underway on Thursday at Oran Good Park in Farmers Branch.

The Patriots, ranked No. 2 in the nation with a 38-2 record, have been in the championship game five times.

East Division champion UT Tyler and West Division champion Texas Lutheran (32-8) enter as the top seeds in the double-elimination event.

Head coach Mike Reed’s defending conference champion Patriots went 23-1 against East opponents and enter on an 18-game winning streak, while head coach Wade Wilson’s Bulldogs went 22-2 against West teams and are riding a 13-game winning streak.

UT Tyler opens play at 10 a.m. Thursday against West No. 4 Concordia Texas (25-13). If the Patriots win, they will play at 7 p.m. Thursday. The loss means they would play at 4 p.m. Thursday. Games are scheduled for Friday and Saturday as well.

Oran Good Park’s address is 13411 Tom Field Road.

Admission prices are $5 for adults (age 18 and older), $3 for children (age 6 through high school) and $3 for ASC students (with valid ID). Children under age 5 will not be charged. No complimentary passes will be issued. Only cash will be accepted (no credit cards or checks).

Cronin earns honor

UT Tyler’s Joey Cronin has been named the American Southwest Conference East Division Hitter of the Week for April 15-20.

Cronin, the Patriots’ all-time hit leader, capped off her final regular season with numerous school and conference records to her name.

The senior from Celina was 12 for 21 with three home runs, two triples, four doubles and 10 RBIs to fuel a 6-0 week for the Patriots.

Cronin also broke the conference’s all-time single-season doubles record of 22 set by Mary Hardin-Baylor’s Kacie Kripner and UT Tyler’s Lindsey Peters in 2007. She currently has 24 two-baggers.

Cronin scored nine runs and walked twice during the week. She locked up the conference’s regular season batting title with a .496 average.

This is the second time this season Cronin has taken the league’s top weekly hitting award.

Tennis change

West Division seeding and location for this weekend’s ASC Men’s Tournament has been revised following notification from Texas Lutheran University late Monday that an ineligible player had competed for the Bulldogs throughout the spring men’s tennis season.

“Texas Lutheran Director of Athletics Bill Miller notified the Conference immediately upon discovering an ineligible player had competed during the spring semester matches,” Amy Carlton, ASC commissioner said. “Changes to the season results and tournament seeding were made according to conference policy adopted by the coaches and administrators in May 2010.”

Under ASC Tennis Operating Code 1.1.1, the use of an ineligible singles and/or doubles player during a league dual match will result in forfeiture of the entire match by the offending team. Thus, this resulted in forfeiture by Texas Lutheran of five ASC West Division dual matches in the spring season and the West Division title.

Mary Hardin-Baylor now wins the West title and will host the tourney in Belton beginning Friday. Hardin-Simmons University moves to the No. 2 seed and Schreiner University moves into the No. 3 seed. No seeds in the men’s East Division were affected by the conference action.

The UT Tyler women’s team plays Schreiner on Friday, while the Patriot men, winners of the East Division, play on Saturday.

Tracksters Shine

On Saturday, four UT Tyler athletes participated in the prestigious Michael Johnson Classic in Waco.

Ed Palencia set a school record in the men’s javelin with a toss of 62.70 meters. Palencia, a senior from Longview, competed against 15 opponents, six of which were NCAA D-I athletes.

Ford Noack was seventh in 800 meters with a time of one minute and 55:12 seconds. In the 1500 meter run, Nick Huff was behind several D1 runners with a time of 4:02.34.

Junior Buck Thompson competed in the discus and shot put, throwing the shot 16.58 meters and the discus 49.46 meters, good enough for ninth and 10th place, respectively.

ASC Track & Field

The 2013 American Southwest Conference Track and Field Championships are set for Friday-Saturday at the HSU Track and Field Complex on the campus of Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene.

The field of teams includes Concordia Texas (men and women); Hardin-Simmons (men and women); Mississippi College (men and women); Sul Ross State (men and women); UT Tyler (men and women); and Texas Lutheran (women).

The league will crown a new champion on the men’s side in 2013 as 14-time defending champion McMurry has moved to Division II and the first two ASC men’s champion Howard Payne (1997, 1998) no longer competes in track and field. Texas Lutheran, under the direction of first-year head coach Darlene Holland, has won three straight women’s conference championships.

The championships get underway at 2 p.m. Friday with the high jump and triple jump. The hammer throw, javelin throw and 3000-meter steeplechase begin at 3 p.m., with the 10,000-meter run following at 4 p.m.

Saturday’s schedule begins with field events at 9 a.m. (discus, shot put, pole vault) and 10 a.m. (long jump). The track schedule starts at 1 p.m. with the 4x100-meter relay and ends with the 4x400-meter relay at 4:45 p.m. The presentation of conference awards will take place at approximately 5:45 p.m.

The ASC men’s and women’s team and individual champions do not receive automatic bids into the NCAA Division III Outdoor meet. Competitors advance to nationals by meeting event qualification standards.

——

ASC Baseball Championship Tournament Series

First Round

(Best-of-3 Series)

(Hosted by top two seeds from each division)

(West 4) Hardin-Simmons at (East 1) UT -Tyler

Irwin Field, Tyler

Game 1: 6 p.m., Friday

Game 2: 2 p.m., Saturday

Game 3: 30 minutes following Game 2, if necessary

(E4) East Texas Baptist at (W1) Texas Lutheran

Katt-Isbell Field, Seguin

Game 1: 2 p.m., Friday

Game 2: 11 a.m., Saturday

Game 3: 30 minutes following Game 2, if necessary

(W3) Mary Hardin-Baylor at (E2) Louisiana College

Billy Allgood Field, Pineville, La.

Game 1: 6 p.m., Friday

Game 2: 2 p.m., Saturday

Game 3: 30 minutes following Game 2, if necessary

(E3) UT Dallas at (W2) Concordia-Texas

Tornado Field, Austin

Game 1: 6 p.m., Friday

Game 2: 2 p.m., Saturday

Game 3: 30 minutes following Game 2, if necessary

American Southwest Conference Softball Tournament

Oran Good Park, Farmers Branch

Fields No. 3 and No. 5

Thursday

Game 1: [East 1] UT Tyler vs. [West 4] Concordia Texas, 10 a.m., F5

Game 2: [West 2] Mary Hardin-Baylor vs. [East 3] Louisiana College, 10 a.m., F3

Game 3: [East 2] East Texas Baptist vs. [West 3] Howard Payne, 1 p.m., F3

Game 4: [West 1] Texas Lutheran vs. [East 4] UT Dallas, 1 p.m., F5

Game 5 (Elimination): Loser Game 1 vs. Loser Game 2, 4 p.m., F5

Game 6 (Elimination): Loser Game 3 vs. Loser Game 4, 4 p.m., F3

Game 7: Winner Game 1 vs. Winner Game 2, 7 p.m., F3

Game 8: Winner Game 3 vs. Winner Game 4, 7 p.m., F5

Friday, April 26

Game 9 (Elimination): Winner Game 5 vs. Loser Game 8, 10 a.m., F3

Game 10 (Elimination): Winner Game 6 vs. Loser Game 7, 10 a.m., F5

Game 11: Winner Game 7 vs. Winner Game 8, 1 p.m., F5

Game 12 (Elimination): Winner Game 9 vs. Winner Game 10, 4 p.m., F5

Game 13 (Elimination): Winner Game 12 vs. Loser Game 11, 7 p.m., F5

Saturday, April 27

Game 14 (Championship): Winner Game 11 vs. Winner Game 13, 1 p.m., F5

Game 15 (Championship II): If necessary, start 30 minutes after Game 14 conclusion, F5

Sunday, April 28 for Inclement Weather, if needed.

ASC Tennis Championships

Hosted by University of Mary Hardin-Baylor

Yvonne Li Tennis Center, Belton

Men

Friday

Match 1: Hardin-Simmons (West 2) vs. Mississippi College (East 3)

Match 2: UT Dallas (East 2) vs. Schreiner (West 3)

Saturday

Match 3: UT Tyler (East 1) vs. Winner HSU/MC, 2 p.m.

Match 4: Mary Hardin-Baylor (West 1) vs. Winner UTD/Schreiner

Sunday

Championship: Winner Match 3 vs. Winner Match 4

Women

Friday

Match 1: Texas Lutheran (West 2) vs. Mississippi College (East 3)

Match 2: UT Tyler (East 2) vs. Schreiner (West 3)

Saturday

Match 3: UT Dallas (East 1) vs. Winner TLU/MC

Match 4: Mary Hardin-Baylor (West 1) vs. Winner UT Tyler/Schreiner

April 28

Championship: Winner Match 3 vs. Winner Match 4

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