MSU Roundup: Tennis at Sweet 16; Volleyball Signing Class - KAUZ-TV: Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

MSU Roundup: Tennis at Sweet 16; Volleyball Signing Class

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#17 Men Upset #13 UC-San Diego, Will Face #1 West Florida

For the second straight season and third time in program history, the 17th ranked Midwestern State Mustangs advance to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Division II Tennis Championships thanks to a 5-1 triumph over 13th ranked California-San Diego on Wednesday.
 
The Mustangs (19-6) won their sixth straight, while UCSD (15-10) fell for the fourth straight match.
 
"This was a quality win for the program," said MSU Coach Scott Linn. "It was a tight one, despite the score."
 
The Mustangs are scheduled to meet unbeaten No. 1 West Florida on Thursday at noon Texas time.  UWF (26-0) was a 5-0 winner over Edinboro (Pa.) on Wednesday.
 
It wasn't an easy win for the Mustangs, but MSU prevailed thanks to a pair of wins from junior Jarrod Liston and sophomore Kyle Davidson.
 
Davidson and Kacper Boborykin, MSU's No. 2 doubles team, got the first point of the match with an 8-2 triumph over Horea Porutiu/Alexandre Miaule.
 
The Tritons evened the match as Max Jiganti/Kona Luu upset No. 11 Tomas Grejtak/Ramon Toyos 8-4 at No. 1.
 
Then Liston and Zack Santagate played an epic doubles competition against Rajeev Herekar/Mark Meyer at No. 3.  The MSU duo led 7-5 in the eight-game pro-set, only to have Herekar/Meyer battle back to knot it at 8-all.
 
Liston/Santgate answered in the tiebreaker 7-3 to give MSU the 2-1 advantage.
 
"Jarrod (Liston) and Zack (Santagate) hung tough," said MSU assistant Luke Joyce.  "After they got broken late in the match, they stayed together and played hard at the end."
 
When singles play commenced, Toyos wasted little time at No. 3, ripping Ganesh Alagappan 6-1, 6-0 for a 3-1 Mustangs lead.
 
But that was the only singles point that finished in two sets.
 
Liston held a 6-2 lead over Luu after the first set at No. 4, before Luu posted a 6-4 win in the second.  Liston roared back in the third set 6-1 for the Mustangs fourth point in the match.
 
"Liston used his forehand to dictate play in the third set," said Linn.  "He played the ball well, moving at the right times.  It was a quality third set."
 
Davidson, ranked 43rd nationally, clinched it for the Mustangs.
 
After falling behind 4-6 to Herekar at No. 2 singles, Davidson battled back with a 6-4 second set and finished with a 6-1 third for the winner.
 
"Kyle played a good match," Linn stated.  "He executed his service game in the third set and his return percentage went up.  He found weakness in his opponent, played a higher level match and finished strong."
 
In the unfinished singles play, 27th ranked Boborykin and 38th ranked Max Jiganti split sets 6-3, 3-6 with Jiganti holding a 4-1 advantage when play ended at No. 1.
 
Grejtak and UCSD's Meyer split sets 6-3, 5-7 at No. 6 that was left unfinished, and MSU's Chris Norrie trailed Porutiu 7-6 (8-6), 5-4 when the final point was scored.
 
MSU had to wait through a two-and-a half hour weather delay before starting its match with UC San Diego.  The teams had just started warmups when the delay was called.

#16 Women Fall to #4 Hawaii Pacific

The 16th ranked Midwestern State Mustangs season came to an end on Wednesday in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Division II Championships with a 5-0 loss to fifth ranked Hawaii Pacific at Sanlando Park.
 
But the Mustangs (23-4) had to endure a grueling day before seeing their 14-match win streak come to an end.

"I'm proud of our Mustangs," said MSU Coach Scott Linn.  "We're just disappointed to end the season. We had bigger plans than to just get to the round of 16.  We just didn't do it."
 
Lightning and rain caused two delays in the St. Leo's (Fla.) vs. BYU-Hawaii match scheduled before the MSU-HPU match.  Then that match went the distance (won by St. Leo's 5-4), causing the Mustangs and Sea Warriors to start some nearly three hours late.

After playing just three games in the opening doubles matches, another storm caused a two-and-a half hour delay for the teams.

"I was really pleased with the way we handled the delays," said Linn.  "Both teams handled them well."

When the teams returned, it was a battle for the doubles points, with all three contests going deep.  But for MSU, they all went wrong with Hawaii Pacific (17-6) grabbing a commanding 3-0 advantage.  It was just the second time this season MSU was swept in doubles play.
 
HPU's Lorena Gheorghe/Magdalena Smejova grabbed the first point at No. 2 doubles with an 8-5 win over the Mustangs Amy Clifton/Lauren Pineda.
 
Then the Mustangs dropped a heartbreaker at No. 1, with 21st ranked Karen Ramirez/Celina Goetti handing MSU's 20th ranked Kayla Casey/Taylor Coffman an 8-5 loss.  Heartbreaking for the Mustangs as Casey/Coffman had a 5-3 lead slip away to the Sea Warriors.
 
The battle for the final doubles point at No. 3 had to go extra, as MSU's Courtney Anderson/Paige Boykin traded games with Vivian Hansen/Lea Kruse-Utermann.  But after the eight-game pro set reached 7-7, Hansen/Kruse-Utermann got a service break from Anderson/Boykin to take a 9-7 win.

"Every doubles match was dead even," said Linn.  "HPU went after it harder late in those matches to get us."
 
Needing only two singles points to win the match, HPU got wins at No. 4 and No. 6 to end the match, while the Mustangs were hanging tough at other spots.
 
Gheorghe beat Anderson 6-2, 6-2 at No. 4 to go ahead 4-0, then ended the match when Kruse-Utermann beat Boykins 6-3, 6-2 at No. 6.
 
Coffman was up a set at No. 3 singles against Smejova 6-2, 4-5, when the match was halted.
 
MSU trailed on the other courts, but all were close in second set action.  Clifton at No. 1 had dropped the first set 2-6 to Ramirez, but was in a tiebreaker after a 6-6 second set.
 
Casey at No. 2 was down 1-6 after the first to Goetti, and trailed 3-5 in the second, while Lauren Pineda at No. 5 dropped the first set tiebreaker 7-4 to Hansen to trail 6-7, but was down 1-2 when play ended.
 
The Lone Star Conference Champions, MSU reached the round of 16 for the second consecutive season and the fourth time in program history.  The three times that beat MSU this season (Hawaii Pacific twice, Armstrong Atlantic and Southwest Baptist) all advanced to the national quarterfinals on Wednesday.

"HPU had a little more experience at the NCAA level than we did, but we are full of freshmen and sophomores.  Everybody returns next season and we will be more experienced," Linn added.

Volleyball Announces Signing Class

Midwestern State coach Venera Flores-Stafford announced the addition of four prep standouts to National Letters of Intent Wednesday.

Alvin High's Madison Andrews, Dripping Springs High's Meghan Bettis, Waco Midway High's Christy Carruth and Bastrop High's Addison Semer join Frisco High's Morgan Haire for the 2014 signing class.

"We're excited about this freshman class," Flores-Stafford said. "They bring a lot of intensity and a lot of love for the game. They will give us some depth on our roster as we've made a commitment to become deeper on the roster to overcome some of the injuries we've had the past few years."

Andrews, a two-time first-team all-district performer, is coming off of a stellar campaign while leading Alvin High to a District 22-5A title. The 6-0 middle blocker garnered All-State honors from Texas Girls' Coaches' Association and Texas Sportswriters' Association after posting 320 kills, 263 digs, 53 aces and 27 blocks.

"Madison is a six-rotation outside hitter that is definitely going to vie for a starting role," Flores-Stafford said. "She's exciting to watch because she is long, aggressive and an all around hard working girl."

Bettis also played a key role in helping Dripping Springs High to a 40-10 mark and a regional and district title on the way to the Texas Class 4A state semifinals last fall.

The 5-10 outside hitter garnered all-state mention posting 417 kills, 318 digs and 73 aces during her senior campaign. Bettis is a three-time all-district first-team performer.

"Meghan is another six-rotation outside hitter that's going to give us great depth at that position," Flores-Stafford said. "She hits a heavy ball and will also vie for starting time."

Carruth played a part in four straight district championships at Waco's Midway High School where she was a three-time all-league performer as a setter.

The 5-7 setter has competed at the top level of her age group in club ball with the Waco Juniors since she was 10 years old.

"Christy is a little firecracker," Flores-Stafford said. "She's a setter with a great attitude. She's aggressive, intense and she loves for her hitters to get kills. She loves the game so much and puts so much into it. After seeing her play, I get tired."

Semer, a 6-foot outside hitter, enjoyed a standout career as a four-time All-District 17-4A performer at Bastrop High. She earned special honors in each of her prep season including top newcomer in 2010, defensive player of the year in 2011, MVP in 2012 and offensive player of the year in 2013.

"Addison's strength is definitely in her blocking ability," Flores-Stafford said. "She plays middle in her club and high school, but we will transition her to the right side because she sets a mean block. That's what we need especially in our outside hitter driven conference."

Haire inked with Midwestern State in the early signing period as a standout defensive specialist out of Frisco High.

Midwestern State enjoyed 10-game improvement last fall finishing with a 17-13 record. The Mustangs advanced to the Lone Star Conference Postseason Tournament for the seventh time in the last 10 seasons.

2014 MSU VOLLEYBALL SIGNING CLASS
Player Pos. Ht. Class Hometown/High School (Previous)
Madison Andrews OH 6-0 Fr. Pearland, Texas / Alvin HS
Meghan Bettis OH 5-10 Fr. Dripping Springs, Texas / Dripping Springs HS
Christy Carruth S 5-7 Fr. Hewitt, Texas / Midway HS
Morgan Haire DS 5-4 Fr. Frisco, Texas / Frisco HS
Addison Semer OH 6-0 Fr. Bastrop, Texas / Bastrop HS


Madison Andrews
6-0 | OH | Pearland, Texas | Alvin High School

Notables: a four-year letter winner for coach James Stahl at Alvin High School... earned Texas Girls Coaches' Asscoation and Texas Sportswriters' Association Class 5A All-State honors after recording 320 kills with 54 aces, 263 digs and 27 blocks as a senior leading the Yellowjackets to a District 22-5A championships... also named 22-5A Offensive Player of the Year as a senior... named to the Dickinson and LISD Volleypalooza all-tournament teams... an All-District 22-5A first-team performer as a junior in 2012 finishing with 317 kills, 252 digs and 27 blocks... named Alvin High's Middle of the Year as a sophomore in 2011 finishing with 285 kills, 185 digs and 21 blocks... had 52 kills and 93 digs while seeing varsity action as a freshman in 2010... competed at the club level for AVA of Texas under coaches Jennifer Webb, Rachel McClure, Jessica Curtis and Jennifer Foley... brother, Cline Andrews, is a junior third baseman at Texas A&M-Kingsville... daughter of Robert and Kelly Andrews...

What coach Flores-Stafford said: "Madison is a six-rotation outside hitter that is definitely going to vie for a starting role. She's exciting to watch. She's long, aggressive and an all-around harding working girl."


Meghan Bettis
5-10 | OH | Dripping Springs, Texas | Dripping Springs High School

Notables: a four-year starter for coach Michael Kane at Dripping Springs (Texas) High... earned Texas Class 4A All-State honors from Collin Street Bakery/TSWA (honorable mention) and the Texas Girls Coaches Association (first team) after leading the Tigers to state semifinal showing as a senior in 2013... finished senior campaign with 417 kills, 318 digs and 73 aces... a three-time first-team all-district performer... helped Tigers to district titles in 2012 and 2013... competed on the club level for coach Ian Choi of the Austin Juniors 18 Navy... served as President of the Future Business Leaders of America at DSHS... plans to major in business at MSU... daughter of Rusty and Jennifer Bettis...

What coach Flores-Stafford said: "Meghan is a six-rotation outside hitter that's going to give us some depth in that position. She hits a heavy ball and she will vie for starting time."


Christy Carruth
5-7 | S | Hewitt, Texas | Midway High School

Notables: a four-year letter winner for coaches Janett Angel and Ryan Porter at Midway High School in Waco, Texas... helped Panthers claim a share of the district championship in each of her four prep seasons... MHS advanced to the region semifinals in 2010, area round in 2011 and 2013 and to bi-district in 2012... earned first-team all-district honors following junior and senior campaigns in 2012 and 2013 after garnering second-team accolades as a sophomore in 2011... gained all-district honorable mention as a freshman... a first-team Super CenTex pick by the Waco Tribune as a senior in 2013 after gaining second-team mention in 2012... tabbed Midway High team MVP as a junior and senior... an academic all-district honoree in each of her four seasons at MHS... competed at the club level with the Waco Juniors for coaches Jeff Cornell, Jaremiah Tiffin, Toni McGinty and Jason Janda since the age of 10... daughter of Mike and Joy Carruth...

What coach Flores-Stafford said: "She's a little firecracker. She's a setter that has a great attitude. She's aggressive, intense and she loves for her hitters to get kills. That's the kind of intensity we need. She loves the game so much and she puts so much into it. After seeing her play, I get tired."


Morgan Haire
5-5 | DS | Frisco, Texas | Frisco High School

Notables: three-year letter winner for coach Janie Litchford at Frisco (Texas) High School... helped Racoons to three consecutive playoff appearances advacing to the regional finals in 2012 and regional quarterfinals in 2012... earned All-District 9-4A first-team honors as a senior in 2013 and was a second-team honoree as a junior in 2012... presented the Frisco High School Fighting Heart Award in 2012... named FHS Defensive Player of the Year asa senior... earned Academic All-District honors in 2012 and 2013... member of the National Honor Society... competed extensively at the club level for Excel 18s (2014), Club Legacy 18s (2013), Club Legacy 16s (2012), Skyline Molten Firsco 15s (2011) and SPV Frisco 14s (2010) for coaches Christy Williams, John-Michael Stiel, Jessica Camp and Jaime and Brian Siegel... plans to major in mass communications at MSU... daughter of Randall Haire and M.J. Spence...

What coach Flores-Stafford said: "Morgan's enthusiasm and love for the game is what I love about her. You can tell that she loves to be on the court. She is relentless on defense and steady on serve receive. We are excited to add her to our defensive line-up."


Addison Semer
6-0 | OH | Bastrop, Texas | Bastrop High School

Notables: a four-year letter winner for coach Nicole Creek at Bastrop (Texas) High... named District 17-4A Offensive Player of the Year as a senior in 2013... tabbed District 17-4A MVP as a junior, Defensive Player of the Year as a sophomore and Newcomer of the Year as a freshman... a three-time All-District 17-4A first-teamer after earning second-team honors a freshman in 2010... earned Academic All-District honors in 2013... named Female Junior Athlete of the Year at Bastrop High following 2012-13 school year... competed at the club level for coach Ian Choi for the Austin Juniors (Navy) from 2011-14... club team finished ninth at nationals in 2013... daughter of Jim and Amy Semer...

What coach Flores-Stafford said: "Addison plays middle in her club and high school, but we will transition her to the right side because she sets a mean block. That's what we need especially in our outside hitter driven conference."